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Marks of a Real Man of God

Updated on October 3, 2014

Focusing on being men of God

Before we get into the nitty gritty of discerning a man of God, watch this short video (immediately below) on being a man of God. It is 3 minutes well spent!

Men of God

Diagram for discerning men of God from men of Satan
Diagram for discerning men of God from men of Satan

Defining what "man of God" is

People have their own ideas about what is a man of God, but the term means a man which pertains or belongs to God. God has his heart and life, and God uses that man as God sees fit. A "man of God" is therefore a man given over to God wholely and fully. He is a man that seeks God, and throws himself into God's work with all his heart and strength.

What makes a man of God is not that miracles happen at his feet, or that he commands heaven and hell to bow before him. Power does not equal being a man of God. People think because he has power, he has to be a man of God. Satan has his men also, and for every one of them, Satan will give his sargents supernatural power. So you cannot go by any kind of power, fame, supposed "blessings", etc. Pharaoh's magicians had the same supernatural power as God's man, Moses. You cannot go by the outward signs of power, fame, glory, etc. You define a man of God by that which defines him.

Power does not define a man as being a man of God. What defines him is what his heart is given over to, what totally dominates his thinking, actions, being. This is to be so absorbed in the work of God and in the will of God that nothing else matters. Also Satan's man is defined the same way.

John 4:34 Jesus saith unto them, My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work.

John 8:44 Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.

A man is defined as being "of God" because he shows that in his life.

Where are the men of God?

Tract on Discerning between Sheep and Goats

Discerning the False "men of God"

As Jesus correctly separated the Pharisees of his day from their supposed connection with God, we must do the same. Not all men who are in "God's work" are in it for God and God's purposes. Many men are in it for their own personal profit and motives.

Matt 7:15 Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. 16 Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? 20 Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them. 21 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? 23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity. 24 Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:

God demands that every Christian be a fruit inspector. By this I mean that you must examine the fruit of a minister's ministry and life, and from that deduce what kind of minister he is. In this passage, God clearly speaks of disguised ministers which are very dangerous (7:15) Moreover Jesus warned us that "not every one that says unto me, Lord Lord will enter heaven." There are many pretenders out there. The key to discerning between the true man of God and a fake is the element of his disposition towards the will of God.

Note that these pretenders will have ministered "with spiritual power", and this power which proves their validity (at least in their own minds, and what they will tell you to convince you) is that (1) they received special revelation from God, (2) they exercised power in the spiritual world (over demons), (3) that they performed miracles and wonderful works that astonded people. None of these things validate a person as a Christian, much less as a man of God or minister of God. Satan's men all use these to validate themselves, and God disapproves them in the end.

These ministers, as innocence and good as they may present themselves, are God's opponents, and God will send them directly to hell. Why? Because they do not do God's will. What marks a man of God is that he is absorbed in doing God's will. He leaves these three elements to one side in order to focus on performing the will of God. We can break this doing God's will down further into parts: (1) Recognition by study of God's Word, (2) execution of God's Word by spiritual activity. (3) validation of that activity by a correct attitude and motive behind the act (he does it because God commands it, not because it is popular, easy, or provides him with benefits here on earth in any way.

Discerning False Prophets

Characteristics of a Man of God: Christ first in his Heart

John 3:30 He must increase, but I must decrease.

When it comes to the task of discerning a true man of God, it really is not all that hard. A man of God is somebody that has God dominating his thinking, his actions, his character, his life. If you see that obviously in a man's life, then he is a man of God. This can be analyzed in different ways, but they all go back to the same point.

A man of God is not self-centered but Christ centered. He is a man that has Christ as his first priority, first concern, first desire. He has lost "self" in his relationship to Christ.

Acts 13:22 And when he had removed him, he raised up unto them David to be their king; to whom also he gave testimony, and said, I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after mine own heart, which shall fulfil all my will.

The quality that identifies a man as being "of God" is this total commitment to God's will. He looks to be a "favorite" of God because he does whatsoever pleases God, and this is his pleasure, his purpose, his life goal. King David was such a man. He was given over to doing God's will.

John 4:34 Jesus saith unto them, My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work.

Jesus was such a man. "Meat" in this verse means his daily obsession. Men work every day to fill their stomach. No matter what you do, your stomach will always remind you to feed it after a few hours. It will always bring you back forceably to give attention to it. This is the way a man of God sees God's will, God's work.

God's will may be varied and different for different people, but God's work is clearer. God desires for men to hear the Gospel, repent of their sins, and then be saved. After that God's will is that these redeemed men would serve God by congregating in a local church and doing the work of God. This is the will of God for all men and women. A "man of God" has this focus as central in his life, and becomes a great servant of God in accomplishing this will of God.

How to become a man of God

Truth and Virtue

Exod 18:21 Moreover thou shalt provide out of all the people able men, such as fear God, men of truth, hating covetousness; and place such over them (the people of God)...

"Able men" means men of force, strength, or virtue. Virtuous men are men who have spiritual strength to do something for God. God's men are men who can get things accomplished. They are not lazy people. They are not people that are weak, powerless, or unmotivated. They are people who see a job, plan it, attack it, and accomplish it. They are capable people who are equipped to accomplish things. They study life so as to be prepared, able, serving, and useful to God in His work.

"Such as fear God" means these men have more respect and fear for God and what God (in his pleasure or in his anger) can do to them that what men can do to them. These men have a distinct persuasion about them. They are not men pleasers, but God pleasers. They are not easily moved by man's threats, bribes, or influences. They are men that order their life after God's will, because they are fully convinced in their own heart that (1) that is the best way to do things, (2) that is the only way to do things so that life "works out" for the good, (3) that God's wrath is to be avoided at all costs, and this means not disobeying God, not pursuing God's will. (4) dedication and commitment to God and His will are the only way to live so as to avoid problems and receive the blessings and rewards of God both here and in heaven.

"Men of truth" means the man of God is fully given over to truth. Truth means being honest, telling the truth. It means standing against lying, deception, and trickery. A man of God will never manipulate, lie to, or deceive people because he has taken a stand in his nature against those things.

Leonard Ravenhill on "A Man of God"

A few Good Men

The video below is a southern Gospel type song on "A Few Good Men". I don't really like Southern Gospel type music (Gaither type), but the message of the song is very impacting. If you want to get motivated, listen to this song. It has a good message to it.

A Few Good Men (Song)


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