About Jesus   Steve Sweetman

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Meek Isn't Weak

In Mathew 5:5 Jesus told us that the meek, or gentle, will inherit the earth.  This statement would have seemed utterly ridiculous to those who heard it.  Men didn't rise to international supremacy by being gentle.  Ruthless and brutal men used all their military might and resources to plummet nations in their attempt to inherit the earth.


Matthew 11:29 states that Jesus considered Himself to be meek and gentle, and that He was.  In Matthew 21:5 He quoted Zechariah 9:9 that predicted this very fact.


There's no doubt that Jesus was meek, but let's not confuse meekness with weakness.  Being meek is being confidently gentle in the midst of adversity.  Being meek isn't getting bent out of shape and defensive when falsely accused.  Meekness is a product of being secure in who you are.  Such security allows you to stand on the side of truth in humble confidence no matter what is said about you.  For Christians it's not about defending yourself anyway.  It's about defending truth.  When it comes to Jesus, let's not forget that He will return to earth in a dynamite display of authority and power.  The bottom line is that meekness is gentle strength


In the gospel accounts we see Jesus calmly and without hesitation speaking out against the Israeli authorities. "You hypocrites, are you trying to trap me"? (Matthew 22:18)  Jesus didn't retreat in fear when He called these Jewish rulers hypocrites to their face.  Being meek is having the guts to stand for truth.


Notice how Jesus responded to the no-it-all Roman authorities.  I really like this one.  Pilate told Jesus that he had the authority to release Him or execute Him.  Jesus didn't crawl into a corner and pathetically wimp out.  Again, He calmly but confidently spoke the truth.  "You would have no power over me if it were not given to you from above". (John 19:11)   In other words, "cool the rhetoric Pilate.  You're not the one in charge around here".  Meekness doesn't cave in when faced with injustice. 


Look at the apostle Paul.  A close reading of his life and letters shows him to be a meek man.  Being meek didn't mean Paul could be pushed around by the Jewish establishment or bullied by the Roman authorities.  After being unlawfully arrested he systematically set forth the truth in a court of law in His defense of the gospel.  Paul didn't wimp out by accepting this injustice.  He used his Roman citizenship rights to defend the truth of the gospel.  He appealed to Caesar, the highest court in the empire. (Acts 25:11)  Then, when his fight was over, he had the quiet confident strength to face his executioners.   


Look at the apostle Peter.  After being told to stop preaching in the name of Jesus by the Jewish authorities Peter simply said, "Judge for yourself whether it is right in God's sight to obey you rather than God.  For we cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard. (Acts 4:19 - 20)  In other words, "sorry guys, we can't oblige your demand to stop preaching Jesus.   We have a higher authority than you to obey".  Being meek is being secure in knowing the final authority in life.


Insecurity plagues many of us.  It makes us irrationally rant and rave.  It can make us overly defensive, angry, and at times delusional.  This shouldn't be the case with those who find their security in the Lord Jesus Christ.  The Holy Spirit gives us the ability to demonstrate gentle strength and confidence in the face of adversity.  If our security in Jesus bothers the insecure, that's too bad.  We'll position ourselves on the side of truth no matter the cost.  So, as our culture becomes more anti-Christ in nature, we'll have ample opportunity to demonstrate Biblical meekness.  Enjoy the ride ahead. 



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