A Man of One Woman
In both of Paul’s descriptions of an elder (leader) in the early church he followed the same pattern. In 1 Timothy 3, and Titus 1 it is stated that the leader must first have a good reputation (be blameless) and secondly be a husband of one wife. More literally translated it means “a man of one woman”. This is not to be taken as coincidence, as is nothing in the Holy Spirit inspired Bible. Paul purposely put the first condition of a good reputation is to be a “man of one woman”. Let’s briefly explore the reasons why this particular attribute is so vitally important to being a “Man of God”.
Moral purity was an elusive quality in the days of Paul. The Gentile population he worked with gave little thought to having multiple wives (and/or mistresses). Maintaining a moral standard was largely ignored, so Paul’s call to restrain and limit sexual expression was challenging at best. But he pressed forward with that call knowing the resistance he would face. He knew that men needed to adhere to the Biblical standard God had established, from the beginning, so they could reach the potential God had for them. Maintaining moral purity is essential because of the effect sexual sin has on an individual. See 1 Cor. 6 for more detail in this area.
Sadly we are not much different today than the culture facing Paul. The constant barrage of sexually explicit TV shows, movies, and ads bombards our senses every day. Casual sex is almost a given, cohabitation is widely accepted, and abstinence is thought of as an impossibility. Marriage, for many, is passé. The family unit is under attack and single parent households become more and more the norm. And with the breakdown of the family unit comes increased poverty, juvenile delinquency, unplanned pregnancies, etc….
But the call still remains: “man of one woman”. Sex outside of marriage clouds men’s minds, opens doors for other sins, and creates havoc in the family structure God created. If a man will betray his wife, he will lie, cheat, and generally be unfaithful in other areas of his life. For more on this subject click the link below. Dr. Gene Getz in his series “Measure of a Man”
expounds on this and many other areas of what it means to be a “Man of God”.