The Christian church has a surplus of two things: Beautiful, godly women and 30-year-old boys with beards. As a result, we are witnessing church-wide extended adolescence, the general acceptance of mid-life singleness, and a silent increase of pornography use.
Now before we start, this article is going to upset three groups of Christian readers. First, the immature men. In a culture being overtaken by an ungodly form of feminism, men are increasingly feeling intimidated. Now, instead of growing up, knowing up, and showing up—most men, even Christian men, have opted for passivity in the form of workaholism, video games, and guy nights. This article shames each of those reactions as the Bible never embraces the idea of men evading their Biblical roles nor does it support the position of a lone man being a good thing (Genesis 2:18).
Secondly, I will likely upset unbiblical women. Because I ultimately blame the church’s singleness epidemic on men, assertive women who are unwilling to walk in the female roles which the Scriptures prescribe, become easily offended at the insinuation that their desired future is somewhat dependent on a man and not just themselves.
Thirdly, I will upset irrational single Christians. Because singleness has become an issue of pain for many, people will somehow become victims by convincing themselves that this article is somehow against being single. An ideology I am clearly not presenting.
That being said, there is a large group of devout Christian women who will accept my suggestions in hopes to better locate the man God has for them.
But why take advice from me? For those of you who don’t know me, I’m a home church Bible teacher, husband to Veronica, and father to three children. In addition, I’m a researcher and writer of hard topics surrounding faith, family, and culture.
Along my journey, I have received hundreds of emails from single Christian women desperate to find a Biblical man in our broken world. A man walking in purity, a man willing to commit, and a man able to lead, provide, and protect. Now one would assume if these men existed anywhere, they would be within the four walls of the church. However, it seems as if much of the male population in our Sunday gatherings have given themselves over to the criteria of the culture, instead. Which in turn, has led many single Christian women toward feelings of hopelessness and to even question if their spiritual standards are unreasonable.
Below, is my attempt to help women know what they’re actually looking for. To not be fooled by a man’s fleeting charm but to have a sound definition of a biblical man.
- He’s Not An Escape Artist
The Bible is progressively becoming hate speech to the culture and our churches have taken note. For those who are paying attention, I’m sure you’re aware of the church’s recent increase in the avoidance of controversial topics and inconvenient passages of scripture. This dodge of difficult conversations combined with pastors who litter their sermons with phrases like, “What this scripture is really saying…” or “Remember, this instruction was for Christians over 2,000 years ago…” has left both men and women with two dilemmas: First, because many pastors have implied that the real truth of Scripture can’t be found in English but in the Greek and Hebrew, many Christians doubt if they are even capable of understanding their Bibles. Secondly, the avoidance of culturally unpopular passages have confused Christians on which scriptures, if any, have real authority in they way they behave.
What does this have to do with finding a biblical man? We live in a time of male escape artists. Men who are so incredibly proficient at explaining away the jurisdiction of Scripture. Subsequently, this destabilized relationship with the Bible allows them to justify all types of unbiblical behaviors that you, as a woman, must be capable of identifying.
2 Timothy 4:3-4 says, “For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables.” NKJV
My instruction to Christian women is to search for a man who approaches the Word of God with reverence. Paul even instructs the position of “fear and trembling” in Philippians 2:12. Because a man who is careful, who fears the Lord, and is diligent to rightly divide the truth is a safe man to marry. But a man who is determined to twist scripture to vindicate his own will is a dark valley for a woman to walk in.
- He’s Faithful Even When He’s Single
I don’t know about you, but I am highly skeptical of a Christian man who is perfectly content with a drawn out relationship with a young woman. In other words, a twenty-something male raging with natural testosterone and a healthy sex drive, yet decides to postpone commitment by embracing a 2-3 year dating period followed up by the hesitancy of a proposal.
To me, this is telling. Either he is a rare, incredibly cautious and self-controlled man or he fits the statistics—meaning he’s releasing himself in front of a computer screen. The latter seems to be the case for most relationships today. Furthermore, this removal of God’s natural tool of marital acceleration explains his unnatural endurance to sustain your dating marathon.
My advice ladies, if you’re concerned about your boyfriend’s faithfulness, be direct. Look him straight in the eyes and ask him, “Have you been looking at pornography?” Let the Holy Spirit be your discernment. Whether he admits his sin or covers it up, remember as a girlfriend (and not a wife), he is not your project to fix. He is not your opportunity to grow patience and compassion. Sex with yourself is sex outside of marriage. Viewing pornography is a very real form of adultery. If he will cheat with his heart, he’ll eventually cheat with his body.
Jesus tells us in Matthew 5:27-28: “You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.” NKJV
A pornography habit is a choice. Pornography doesn’t magically happen to men. We are not victims of sin but victors over it. Sure, it can be difficult to walk in righteousness. Our bodies can even develop biological addictions. But complete and utter righteousness is God’s expectation for men and it should be yours as well. The last thing you need is to start your marriage repairing your husband’s fleshly indulgences.
Instead, look for a man who is slow to kiss, slow to touch, but fast to commit. Look for a man whose intention is marriage, whose voice is filled with purity, and whose view of pornography in sinful, dangerous, and absolutely unthinkable.
- His Mom Isn’t Paying For His Netflix
Ladies, if you’re dating a guy whose parents still cover his cell phone and Netflix bill, you have a problem. The church has continually increased the age of independence for young men and it’s not healthy. The shedding of adolescence should occur between the ages of 13 to 16. Not 18 to 30. A man who hasn’t moved out or cannot pay his own bills is a man unable to prove his ability to care for a wife.
1 Timothy 5:8 says, “But if any man does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.” NKJV
A male who hasn’t walked through the appropriate rights of passage is simply a boy masquerading as a man. A biblical man, however, has prepared himself for the care of a bride. He has ordered his finances, his career, and his household to welcome the addition of another.
Sadly, society has normalized this idea of leeching off your parents years into your marriage. The culture and media have approved the notion of remaining unsteady up through the age of thirty. But this is not a biblical idea. Biblical marriage requires the birth of a separate unit. A oneness that doesn’t include mommy and daddy. Now, can you turn to your parents in an emergency? Sure. But that’s not what’s occurring in society. You’re looking for a man who has learned how to separate the differences between his needs and his wants. You’re looking for a man who’s riding without training wheels. Essentially, finding a man who has learned what it requires to sustain himself in this world is a strong sign he can sustain you.
Now, I imagine many of you are convinced that this type of man doesn’t exist in such a broken world. May I remind you of how the wives of Noah’s sons must have felt prior to meeting their husbands. They lived in a world completely absent of Godly men. The only men left approved were Noah and his three sons. Talk about little to no options.
In other words, our world isn’t as broken as Noah’s. There is hope. These men do exist. And through a walk combined with prayer and diligence, they can be found.
However, you can’t expect to find a biblical man without being a biblical woman. In my experience, we attract who we are. One of the greatest strategies to find yourself within God’s will is walking in accordance to His word.
Lastly, I’d also like to make a caveat. Don’t shut down every eight and nine because he’s not a ten. Ultimately, look for a man whose yielded to the Word. Sometimes the physical needs time to catch up with the spiritual and removing flexibility from this process might leave you alone when you didn’t have to be.
Finding your husband is ultimately the most important moment outside of finding Jesus. It requires discernment, wisdom, faith, risk, and love. The key to protecting your marriage before it even begins is to measure your man today against the Word. A godly man is a man who aligns with God’s character. He’s a man who yearns for his bride. He’s a man who loves children. He’s a man of obedience to Christ. He’s a man worth following.
Dale Partridge is a Wall Street Journal Bestselling author, social media influencer on faith and culture and the founder of UnlearnChurch.com. He lives with his wife and three children on their farm in Oregon.