All Believers Are Called to Be Meek
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God's Word emphasizes meekness as one of the most essential traits a believer can have. In fact, this quiet but powerful endurance is one way that we are set apart from those of the world. According to Scripture, everyone who desires to please God will:
- See the value in meekness, embracing it as part of a Godly life.
- Desire to grow in meekness, knowing we can't do it without God.
- Pray for opportunities to show meekness to others, hoping it will lead them to God.
The Old and New Testaments are full of lessons and reminders about this characteristic. Many of the early heroes of the faith lived it out.
"Now Moses was a very humble man, more humble than anyone else on the face of the earth" (Numbers 12:3).
Jesus taught over and over about humility and loving our enemies. Those two elements show that being meek is not passive, but making an active choice motivated by God's love.
"You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven" (Matthew 5:43-44).
In this passage from Matthew 11, Jesus spoke of Himself in this way, then invited others to join Him.
"Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls" (Matthew 11:29).
Jesus showed us the ultimate example of meekness during His trial and crucifixion. He willingly tolerated abuse and then death because He knew the result would be salvation for us. Isaiah shared a prophesy of this event that reads, "he was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth; he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before its shearers is silent, he did not open his mouth…" (Isaiah 53:7).
Later, the Apostle Paul encouraged the new church members to respond to Jesus' meekness by “putting it on” themselves, and letting it govern their behavior.
"Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience" (Colossians 3:12).
As we think more about meekness, though, we need to keep in mind that we are not meant to stay silent all the time. God always takes care of us, but He may call us to speak out and defend Him to others, maybe even loudly. Jesus provides us with a model for that as well. He knew the passions of His Father's heart, and let those lead Him during His ministry. For example:
"When he had said this, Jesus called in a loud voice, ‘Lazarus, come out!’” (John 11:43).
"So he made a whip out of cords, and drove all from the temple courts, both sheep and cattle; he scattered the coins of the money changers and overturned their tables. To those who sold doves he said, ‘Get these out of here! Stop turning my Father’s house into a market!’” (John 2:15-16).
Photo credit: Unsplash/Aaron Burden