January-February 2019 – According to ancient Jewish custom, a boy of 13 was no longer a child. He had reached the age when his behavior was his own responsibility. And his rite of passage from childhood into manhood was celebrated in a ceremony called a Bar Mitzvah.
Literally meaning “son of the law” in Aramaic, the Bar Mitzvah capped off a year of religious study following the boy’s 12th birthday. It was a very public coming-of-age ceremony recognizing a young man’s legal and spiritual age of accountability.
Bryan Fischer, host of Focal Point on American Family Radio’s Talk Network, believes our society has lost the true significance of the Bar Mitzvah. Consequentially, we no longer raise sons of the law who demonstrate godly integrity and responsibility.
In a conversation with AFA Journal, Fischer explained that his new book, The Boy to Man Book: Preparing Your Son for Manhood, was written to counter that loss. He hopes it will serve as a timeless, user-friendly resource for Christian fathers to help prepare their 12-year-old sons for adulthood.
“The Boy to Man Book is predicated on the idea of the Bar Mitzvah when a boy became a son of the law,” said Fischer. “Jewish society was saying, ‘From this time forward, we are treating you like a man. We expect you to behave like a man who is mature, righteous, and a model for others to follow.’ And they were definitely onto something.”
The idea for The Boy to Man Book surfaced seven years ago during Fischer’s daily Bible study when he realized Solomon used the phrase “my son” 23 times in the book of Proverbs.
“It occurred to me that Solomon was telling us what he wanted his own sons to know” stated Fischer. “It was all of the distilled wisdom he wanted his sons to have as they grew toward manhood. In essence, it made the book of Proverbs a training manual for fathers and
Fischer began to study the book of Proverbs intently. Keeping in mind that the Hebrew word for wisdom is literally skill, he painstakingly classified each verse into subheadings centered on common life skills. His final product, The Boy to Man Book, has 24 chapters, each incorporating verses from Proverbs, real stories, and insightful biblical application that today’s Christian fathers can pass on to their sons.
“I wrote the book I wish someone had written for me when my son was 12. That’s why I used experiences from my own life with my son, J.D.” Fischer said. “I hope fathers will take it and read it aloud with their sons, drawing them out and finding opportunities to approach topics that might otherwise be hard to discuss.”
Accordingly, Fischer wrote The Boy to Man Book from the perspective of a father, rather than writing as a talk show host or even from his previous perspective as a pastor. In fact, Fischer sought his son’s thoughts on the book before he seriously began writing, and J.D. encouraged his dad to share his relevant, timely wisdom with young fathers.
So began The Boy to Man Book, and Fischer prays that it will become a practical tool in the hands of loving Christian fathers and grandfathers who desire to scripturally teach their boys what it means to be real men, real husbands, and real fathers – true sons of the law of God.
Bryan Fischer hosts Focal Point, a radio program heard weekdays at 1 p.m. CT on American Family Radio.
Purchase The Boy to Man Book at afastore.net or call 877-927-4917.