Blessed are the Meek, for they shall inherit the earth. [Matthew 5:5 ESV]
One of the tools used by the world, our own flesh and our Adversary is the redefining of words to cause confusion and division. People change the way they think as the meanings of words change and are used over and again. A fetus is a fetus but when you call a fetus a baby people think of something they have seen and possibly held and for whom they have cared. When we allow ourselves to think of “meekness” as characterized by weakness we lose the power of the word and cannot think correctly. While the definitions of words may change over time and with use the truths taught by God and His Son in the Scripture do not change. How we understand and use the words form our thinking which in turn motivates our actions which ultimately shows the evidence of our relationship with God.
Our definition of meekness and the discipline of the person who is meek cannot be over emphasized. We cannot spend too much time on the subject. We can spend too little. Meekness is first God’s strength just naturally under God’s control. God gives His strength and many other tools, to the person who has relinquished control of self to God.
Here is a baffling paradox: How does a person corrupted by sin do that which is completely against his fallen nature? How do I relinquish control of myself to God when I am, even knowing I am His, continually rebelling against Him? Only in God Himself is an answer found to these questions.
He takes those who are His through the process of sanctification where they recognize the fact of sin and then realize its consequences, which is separation from God who is the source of life. God expects obedience coming from His strength. Though we are responsible to obey His commands He does not want us to use our own strength because it is defined by rebellion against Him. He demands obedience from the whole self, the whole person, from our minds, emotions and wills. This obedience isn’t to a checklist of requirements like the Mosaic Law but the deep motivation of listening to and hearing His voice followed by a desire to obey out of love for Him. He calls those who are His to recognize their sin and that of the world and then to realize the consequences of sin, followed by repentance, faith and obedience.
He tells us to be perfect and to be Holy but not under our own efforts. We can do nothing to make ourselves either perfect or holy. We can recognize His Son died for our sin and realize His blood covers us so that when He looks at us He does not see our sin but the perfect sacrifice of His Son. Relinquishing control demands a change of the thinking of our hearts from deciding to work in our own strength to actively deciding to continually relinquish control to Him who capable of fulfilling His promises. We are at war with sin. This war is for the weak to fight in His strength, not for the strong to fight in their own.
He gives the tools and weapons we need to fight the war raging against and within us. As citizens of His kingdom His expectation for obedience is absolute. There can never be a battle fought with even the smallest atom of our own energy and won. We must use the tools and weapons He has given in His strength having relinquished our own self to Him. This is meekness and this is why the world views meekness as weakness and with disdain. We do not fight the way the world fights.
One of the chief characteristics of Godly meekness is Godly leadership. A Godly leader has first learned to serve having completely relinquished control of self to the goals of their master. Only then can they be used by God to lead. This does not mean they will lead but that by knowing how to serve they have learned how and are continuing to learn how to lead. In Scripture the greatest leaders are the humblest servants who have placed themselves under the complete authority of God.
Jesus says “Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth” [Matthew 5:5 ESV]. Those who are truly meek do not want the earth. They want God. They do not want to serve themselves. They want to serve God. They may gain much in the world but they gain God completely. Nothing else matters.