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Blessed are the Meek by Pastor Youngjae

posted Jun 2, 2014, 10:00 AM by Bowmansville UMC   [ updated Jun 2, 2014, 10:01 AM ]

“Blessed are the meek for they will inherit the earth.” (Matthew 5:5)


“Meekness” is defined according to Merriam Webster “the absence of any feeling of being better than others.”  Its synonyms are “gentleness,” “humbleness,” “lowliness,” and “modesty.”  Antonyms would be “arrogance” “self-conceit” “egoism” “loftiness” “lordliness” “pride” “superiority” and so on.


Meekness, gentleness, or humbleness is not an inborn or natural characteristic.  It is a kind of quality that can be learned and obtained by the grace of God, namely by crucifying the sinful nature with the help of the Spirit of Jesus Christ. 


The Bible says it is one of the fruits of the Holy Spirit.  (Galatians 5:22-23)   It is the fruit of the Holy Spirit that is filled with those who are poor in spirit and who mourn for their sins.  The first and second beatitudes are connected to the third.  They are like the whole package just like 9 fruits of the Holy Spirit: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.  They are not like the gifts of the Holy Spirit.  Gifts are many and given differently to various people even if the Spirit is the same.  Fruits are named as many but they are somewhat related.   Just like fruits of the Holy Spirit eight beatitudes are correlated with each other.


Meekness is the quality that is growing in those who see themselves before God.  When a person sees himself or herself hopeless and bankrupt before God and is filled with godly sorrow he or she becomes humble, gentle, or meek.  Therefore the meek, humble, or gentle attitude and conduct come from true realization of who we are before God.


The meek seeks for God’s will, not self-will.  Aren’t we always praying that our will come true and that God keeps and follows our will?  Do we ever ask where God’s will is in any situation?  If there is a cross before you would you take it up?  Remember Jesus’ prayer on Gethsemane - “My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me.  Yet not as I will, but as you will.” (Matthew 26:39) 


With reference to God, meekness means resignation of our will, but with reference to ourselves, it becomes patience or contentedness because we believe God’s promise.  With reference to others, meekness means gentleness toward all human beings, but especially toward the evil and unthankful. 

 How do you deal with the evil?  Don’t we have to repay evil for evil?  Remember the moment when Jesus was arrested by Judas and soldiers sent by the chief priest and the elders.  One of Jesus companions reached for his sword, drew it out, and struck the servant of the high priest, cutting off his ear.   Jesus said to him.  “Put your sword back in its place, for all who draw the sword will die by the sword.” (Matthew 26:52)


Paul said “Do not repay anyone evil for evil.  Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody.” (Romans 12:17)  This is a very challenging order.  It is hard to follow.  However, the reason is clear.  If we repay evil for evil we shall be overcome by evil, instead of overcoming evil with good. (Romans 12:21)  Paul said, “If someone is caught in a sin, you who are spiritual should restore him gently.  But watch yourself, or you also may be tempted.” (Galatian 6:1)   We are quick to analyze, criticize, judge, and try to fix others, but what we need to do is to ask ourselves who I am to judge and fix others.  Remember that we are all hopeless and in need of God’s grace. Jesus said, “Why do you look at the speck of saw dust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?”(Matthew 7:3)  Our focus should be ourselves.  We need to watch ourselves not to fall into temptation.  Even when others sin against you our focus should still be on ourselves.  Do not repay evil for evil but overcome evil with good.

Paul said “A man reaps what he sows.”(Galatians 6:7)  “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.”(Galatians 6:9)  Meekness is not weakness although it may look like it.  Meekness does not mean giving up.  It rather means zealous passion for the good and endless and consistent pursuit of the good and continuous and silent fight against the evil.


Our Lord Jesus said that they will inherit the earth.  He does not mean that he is going to get you some estates or properties if you are good enough.  What he means is that what is his is yours.  The earth is his and so it is yours.  Paul said, “All things are yours.  ….the world or life or death or the present or the future – all are yours, and you are of Christ, and Christ is of God” (1 Corinthians 3:21-22)

People who live in the kingdom of God may be “sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; poor, yet making many rich; having nothing, and yet possessing everything.” (2 Corinthians 6:10)