All Men Should be Gentlemen

I heard Cindy and Ray on STAR94 (atlanta radio) talking this morning about “aren’t there just some things guys should do?” They were sighting a popular celebrity couple where in resent pictures the woman was pumping gas while the guy stayed in the car. There was some speculation whether the guy was texting while she fill the car up. Either way, CIndy and Ray posed a good question: shouldn’t the guy have enough manners to always pump the gas for a lady he’s with? Whether they are in a relationship or not?

I agree totally that there are some things guys should just do. All boys should be taught by their parents how to be gentlemen perpetuously. Still, I have to admit that I am guilty of letting my wife pump the gas now and then. Frankly, I was never taught to pump the gas for my mom. :-) Maybe if I had I wouldn’t be sitting in the car now with my wife. Granted, if the weather has ever been rainy or cold I’ll pump the gas for my wife, but I forget to be chivalrous at times when the going is easy.

The radio hosts went on to encourage women to call in with there opinions. Really? You think men should be gentlemen like and you want the women to tell them to? Doesn’t that entirely defeat the purpose? I agree with Cindy and Ray that men should be properly respectful to the women, but if the women are instructing them as adult men to do so I would think it takes the significance out of the mannerly gestures. If a man holds the door open for a lady, that’s courteous. If the women tells him to as a personal favor, it’s not his will but her will he’s acting upon, and so opening the door for the lady is less than going the unexpected extra mile to pleasantly surprise the lady with his manners.

The Old and New Testament admonish men to love their wives. Love, in the scriptures, is defined as action—not emotion. To love is to demonstrate kindness and selfless acts of love to others. The love doesn’t mean romantic love in this context, but charitable good will toward mankind. So to be a gentlemen is consistent with God’s Word with the nature of real love. Also, good manners likely originated from the biblical faith. Without God-honoring culture, everywhere it has been absent, men are less than courteous to the women. Any culture practicing manners without the presence of Christianity is borrowing from biblical virtue. Restoring gentlemen behavior in society would restore Christian good will.

My cousin in town over the weekend gave me an example of a man totally depraved of Christian manners. The man’s life consists of working, eating, sleeping, and sitting at the computer at home constantly playing online games. There’s nothing morally wrong with playing online games, but at the expense of disrespecting the people he lives with it is inconsiderate and ungentlemenly, such as the case with this guy. My cousin who at times is at this man’s house asks him if she can use the computer briefly to pay bills, find instructions to install a household appliance, etc. The guy inevitably, and true to his form, never respects her greater need for the computer, but always puts her out saying “can it wait?” “It’ll be awhile.” “I’m busy.” “This is important too.” While playing computer games! Incessantly!

This sort of disregard reminds me why I appreciate the Christian worldview. To be consistently Christian is to be a gentleman. 1 Peter 3:8:

Finally, all of you, live in harmony with one another; be sympathetic, love as brothers, be compassionate and humble.

And Leviticus 19:32:

Rise in the presence of the aged, show respect for the elderly and revere your God. I am the LORD.

(And there is more I could pull from a topical study of God’s Word on the subject.) So good manners are to be displayed toward all mankind; men to the women; women to the men; children to the elderly, and elderly to the children.

I want to encourage you to consider one new way you can be courteous to your fellow man. Find some everyday occurance where you can make a difference in others lives by showing them respect. It’s always cool, admirable, and manly (or lady like) to selflessly aide your fellow man.

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