Wednesday, June 25, 2014

June 26, 2014

"Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth."  Matthew 5:5

Meekness is not, passive submission, not cowardice, not indecisiveness, nor is it shyness. The Greek word translated meekness (praus) and is used to describe a soothing medicine, a gentle breeze, colt that has been broken and domesticated and a mild or soft word (Proverbs 15:1). A soothing medicine brings comfort; the wrong medicine can bring death. A gentle breeze cools and soothes; a tornado kills. An unbroken colt is destructive; a broken colt is useful. A soft answer brings calm; an angry answer leads to more anger.

Tied up in the word meek is the concept of power under control, the idea of being submissive to someone greater than ourselves. Perhaps the idea of power under control is best translated by the English word "gentleness."

Meekness is power under control.

In case you ask yourself, "Why should meekness matter to me?", let me see if I can help you.

Meekness matters because it is one of the eight attitudes necessary to glorify God in His Kingdom. The Beatitudes reflect the mindset of those who wish to enter the Kingdom of God and live under the blessing of God's approval.

To appreciate the scope and significance of the Beatitudes remember why Jesus gave them to us. The purpose of the Beatitudes is not primarily for our happiness, they were given so we will know what makes HIM happy. Jesus reminded us that it is HIS Kingdom designed for HIS glory. As believers, His happiness should result in our happiness.

Let me ask you a  few questions:

"When you lose control of your emotions or your passions, do you bring glory to God?"

"Are you tired of doing damage to yourself and others by not being able to control your emotions/passions?"

"Do you often lose control and express your emotions/passions in hurtful ways?"

"Is it important to you that you be able to control over your emotions/passions in a way that brings glory to God?"

If those are concerns of yours, meekness should matter to you!

Kent Hughes in this book on the Sermon the Mount notes some practical benchmarks by which you can assess whether you are manifesting the meekness Christ's calls for...

• Harshness: If you are mean in your treatment of others, if there is an absence of gentleness in your treatment of others, take heed.

• Grasping: If you make sure you always get yours first, if being number one is the subtle driving force in your life, if you care little about how your actions affect others, beware.

• Vengeful: If you are known as someone never to cross, if you always get your "pound of flesh," be on your guard.

• Uncontrolled: If rage fills your soul so that life is a series of explosions occasioned by the "fools" in your life, watch out.

Again, this is not to suggest that you are not a Christian if you fall into these sins, but rather to point out that if they are part of your character, if you are a self-satisfied "Christian" who thinks that the lack of gentleness and meekness is "just you" and people will have to get used to it, if you are not repentant, you are probably not a Christian.” [R. Kent Hughes. “Sermon on the Mount: The Message of the Kingdom.” (Chicago: Crossway Books, xxxx) p. xx]

The meekness Jesus requires of His followers is power/passion/emotion under control - His control.

Will you place your power under His control today?

Will you ask Him to help you be angry at the right times and the right things and in the right way?