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Summary: A real man HANGS OUT with SAVED friends. A man HUGS his wife lots. A man is HAPPY with his STUFF. He HOLDS his wife till "death-do-us-part."

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The title today is a question every husband must answer: "IS YOUR WIFE MARRIED TO A MAN OR A MANIKIN?

This “Dear Ann Landers” letter appeared in the newspaper from a wife:

“My husband doesn’t talk to me. He just sits there night after night, reading the newspaper or looking at T.V. When I ask him a question, he grunts "huh, or Uh’huh." Sometimes he doesn’t even grunt uh’huh. All he really needs is a housekeeper and somebody to sleep with him when he feels like it. He can buy both. There are times when I wonder why he got married.”

It sounds like the man she married turned into a manikin somewhere along the road.

God has designed you to be the spiritual backbone of your family! Step up to the plate gentlemen and take your rightful God-ordained place. Is there a man in the house or a manikin in the house? One is real; the other is fake. The problem with the manikin is that it can look good. But it is hollow and lifeless, a shell of a man. How can you tell the difference? I have four keys by which to recognize a man from a manikin in the house.

This sermon is for everyone today. For those ladies who are unmarried, don’t even hold the hand of a man who does not show the four basic Christian characteristics I share with you today. If you do, you will end up kissing a manikin. And that would not be a pretty sight! To the young unmarried bucks hearing this sermon, learn these four qualities of a godly family man and will make yourself very eligible. To all men who are married, I challenge you to shape up, become full of the Holy Spirit and be the family man God has designed and destined you to be.

Key 1: A Man HANGS OUT with SAVED people.

A Manikin RUNS WILD with UNSAVED people.

A family man reaches for God’s blueprint on how to run his home. He seeks for direction and “know how” from the manufacturer. Turn to the words of a man named Solomon. He was inspired by the Holy Spirit to write a book of saying or proverbs to help us live effective and godly lives. He speaks to every home in Proverbs 24:3:

“3 By wisdom a house is built, and through understanding it is established.”

Notice the two different words in verse 3 to describe our homes. First “by wisdom a house is built.” To build a home is to develop a family. It means to create relationships. It means to find a saved Spirit-filled wife or husband, date, and launch out on the exciting adventure called marriage. It means sharing your heart and mind with that person, having kids and growing old together. All of us are somewhere in the process of building a home.

But then you must “establish” your home. To establish your home means to build it on a concrete slab, on a firm a strong foundation. If encourage you to get the tape of two weeks ago on laying a concrete foundation for your home. It is entitles “Home Sweet Home or Little House of Horrors.”

We all know that our family relationships are going to be bombarded with fierce storms. Jesus warned us in John 10:10 that Satan has one intent, to “steal” your partner, to “kill” your love for each other, and to “destroy” your love relationship and vows. And unless husband and wife establish their relationship firmly on the rock Christ Jesus, it’s over between the two of you. Jesus had this kind of “establishment” in mind when he spoke about the wise family man and the foolish family manikin in Matthew 7:24-28,

“Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. [It was “established.”] 26 But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man [like a manikin] who built his house on sand. 27 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.”

We want you to establish your life and home and business and church on the Word of God. My desire if to hear you confess with David in Psalm 119:105,

“Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path.”

He talks about two different kinds of lights: a “lamp” and a “light.” They are not the same. A “lamp” is a small light. David says, “You Word is like a small light, a flashlight, for every individual step I take, for every thought that flashes through my mind, for every small decision I must make.” He has in mind a laser beam kind of light. A “light” is a large lamp. “Your Word is also like a large light, a spotlight, for my path, for my direction in life.” He has n mind an outside street kind of light. “Your word is a flashlight for my feet and a spotlight for my path.”

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