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September 30, 2014 | Featured | The “Good Man” Syndrome in the Church

Many men think they are good, morally upright and ethical which makes a relationship with Jesus unnecessary because they are good enough. But being a good man is not a great plan. The world doesn’t need more good men who “go to church”, are morally rooted, and don’t cheat on their wives. More specifically, the world doesn’t need more affiliated Christian men. The world, however, desperately needs activated disciples on Jesus.


Affiliated men will go to church, put on a good attitude at work, and try to be a good person in life. I call these men the “Sleeping Giant”in the church because they may be affiliated with the Christian faith, but they are asleep at the wheel when it comes to an activated Kingdom calling.


The "Good Man" Syndrome in the ChurchSleeping Giants are everywhere. They are good men without a mission. Good men who shy away from taking steps of faith. Good men living without a greater purpose in life. And good men escaping reality with a secret double life filled with fantasy. Eventually, the trials of life catch up and crack their code, revealing a hairline fracture in their faith that can lead to destruction in their livelihood, family and marriage. And, that’s exactly what our enemy hopes for.


Unfortunately, the Sleeping Giant perceives he’s not needed in the church. He neither sees nor feels significance there, that no investment is necessary, and that greatness is found outside vs. inside the Kingdom to which he belongs.


In the Bible, there’s a story about an affiliated man who sensed something was missing. He asked Jesus in Matthew 19, “What good thing must I do to get eternal life?” The man had kept all the commandments, but still wondered, “What do I still lack?” Clearly, he felt affiliated but not activated.


In verse 21, Jesus gives an example of how to go from being good to great, from affiliated to activated.


  • “If you want to be complete, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.” — Matthew 19:21


See Jesus’ point? “If you want to be complete,” Jesus says, go take an authentic step of faith for you!  This answer made the man sad because he had great wealth. He valued earthly treasure over heavenly treasure. Jesus told him to “let it go”and “follow me”which required surrendering to God, trusting that He’s got your back.


The unexpected scenario is this: what if the rich man did as Jesus said and went home, liquidated all is property, and started giving it to those in need — maybe a food kitchen for homeless, a shelter for abused women, or a building a church that provide schooling and a safe harbor for children? Most likely, he would have been fine financially, blessed personally, and impacted others eternally.


That man would have moved from affiliated to activated and become a great man. In earthly terms, he would have earned greater respect among his family, would have influenced generations from his gifts, and sowed seeds that would leave a legacy. Don’t make the same mistake. Jesus said, “The man who seeks to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake and for the sake of the Gospel will find true life,” (Mark 8:35). FACT: Women, children, victims of injustice, communities and countries are waiting for the Sleeping Giant Men to rise, the way Jesus prescribes here.


In my book, “Sleeping Giant: No Movement of God without Men of God, I outline a scalable blueprint for Men’s Ministry to move men from bystanders to the front lines, enabling pastors to turn their crowd of affiliated men into a core of activated men. Join the Premier Partner churches who are committed to waking and activating their Sleeping Giant men.


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Kenny Luck is the president and founder of Every Man Ministries. As the former men’s pastor at Saddleback Church in California and current leadership pastor at Crossline Community Church, Kenny has found the proven way to improve men’s ministries around the world. Sleeping Giant is this blueprint, and gives men the tools they need to lead and understand their own men’s ministry. Watch Kenny’s teachings at and start your men’s group today!

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