Saturday, January 6, 2018

Meekness is not Weakness

UV 2877/10000 Meekness is not Weakness
Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.
Matthew 5 v 5
When we are at our peak, we should be meek. When we are weak, we should be strong. The meekness that Jesus recommended and modelled is not weakness but strength and power. Meekness is not weakness but might under control or supernatural restraint, human nature under the control and leadership of the supernatural. The best metaphor to illustrate meekness is “breaking a horse.” The horse is not literally broken down or harmed or injured but it is brought under the discipline of its rider. The horse so broken will prove more powerful, not harmful but useful to all concerned. A tamed horse is better for even itself as its needs are better taken care of in terms of getting enough fodder, water, rest, exercise and appropriate shelter. The needs of the meek are better met in and by the Lord. Likewise, meekness in a follower of Jesus is coming under the discipline and direction of the Holy Spirit in the use of all of our faculties and senses. Just as the horse that is ‘broken’ is only useful to the rider or owner and its power is put to proper use, the followers of Jesus are broken in the same way. Their passion and power comes under the sovereign control of Jesus. The white horse that Jesus rides in Revelation is a symbol of the believer who has a bit in his mouth and the reins of the Spirit of God- the word firmly attached to the bit to make him go right or left as the Lord desires and to halt, trot or gallop under the direction of the Lord. He reigns and rides us with the help of these invisible reins. Suffering and painful human experiences are like the stirrups that are used to stir our spirit and make us go faster in the direction the Lord takes us. A horse that is not tamed and under control of its rider is as good or worse than a donkey for with some carrot or a stick even a stubborn donkey can be persuaded to move in a particular path or direction. Meekness is like the process by which a dam controls a gushing river to tap its water for greater and better uses than to allow it to run waste into the sea or ground.
A meek person then is one who lives in submission to the Lord. He subjects and submits both his strengths and weaknesses to the Lord to use as He wills. Scripture promises that such a person inherits all the blessings of this earth. His needs will be met for the Lord will undertake for him. He will enjoy abundance of peace. He will be able to give an answer to defend his faith without offending anybody. He disciplines his tongue and uses his words with careful deliberation. He is assertive without being aggressive even as Jesus scattered the merchants in the temple in order to cleanse it. A meek person is never in competition with another to prove himself right and another wrong. A meek person waits patiently and with hope for a perceived wrong to be set right. Meekness is not retaliating by repaying evil for evil or insult for insult, betrayal for betrayal. Meekness is waiting patiently for the Lord to act, judge, defend, acquit, avenge or vindicate us.
Jesus wants His followers to emulate Him on these two qualities more than anything else: to be humble and meek like Him. We are blessed and become a source of blessing when we are meek. A meek person is not a “doormat” or a “pushover” but he voluntarily lowers or humbles himself to take a position than what he is entitled to. A meek person does not think or speak ill of others. St Paul for instance though certainly one of the greatest of apostles referred to himself as the worsest of sinners. He forgot his credentials, achievements and accomplishments of the past as mere garbage but he did not forget his sinful past when he hunted and killed the followers of Jesus. Though he was washed of the guilt and cleared of condemnation in the eyes of God, he used it to remind himself to be meek. We too when we are at the peak can recall that we are actually MS or Miserable Sinners saved by grace. It will keep us from pride and from the easily acquired habit of judging others. Meekness is getting divested of all the pettiness and vanities that afflict the human race from the time of Adam and getting invested in the kingdom qualities redeemed in, by and for Christ. To sum up, meekness comes from learning, leaning and living by the wisdom of Jesus. Meekness is not the excuse of the weak but the strength of the wise.
Prateep V Philip

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