Our study on the fruit of the Spirit today brings us to meekness. (Galatians 5: 22, 23). As I started to think about this, I soon found a problem with my understanding of the word “meekness”. To some they say it is a weakness that allows other to put us down, some say it is a strength, some translate it as “gentleness”. For me it is knowing who we are in God, and not using that power to lord it over others.
To see meekness in action let us look at how Jesus was with other people. (sorry for the lack of references) When Jesus called the disciples he just said come and follow me, he left the task of following him up to them. As he healed people he often told them to go and sin no more. He did not follow them around to make sure they did not sin. When the crowd wanted do something to him, he just walked away. When he was on trial before the roman ruler he did not argue with him, Jesus just stated the fact that his kingdom was not of this world and if it had been his followers would have protected him.
The meekness that Jesus portrayed was a strength to him. Why was he able to be meek? The answer to this is found in his knowledge of who he was. He was the Son of the most high. He was sent to do the will of the father. He was to fulfill the scriptures. He did not come to force people to believe or to follow him. He wanted to gather the people under his wings but they would not let him. He could have called a legion of angles to protect him. He had all the resources of heaven at his disposal and could have called on them at any time yet he did not.
Now he calls us to abide in him. We are to put on the Lord Jesus Christ. As we become as Jesus, we will also become meek in our lives. Our meekness will be an asset not a liability to us. We will know who we are in Christ and know that nothing can separate us from the love of God. We to will have the same resources that Jesus had because he lives within us.
A problem that I have seen in the church is the application to not think more highly of ourselves than we should. This is often thought of as being meek. When we apply this to our lives we often put ourselves down but this is not the context of this verse. We are children of the Most High and yet, as Christ, we are not to use this position to lord it over others. When someone is week in the faith we encourage them. When they attack us we do not seek revenge, see David and Saul.
Jesus did not allow others to over power him. He knew when it was time to take a stand and when to walk away. As we live in the Spirit of Christ, he will show us as well when we are to stand our ground and when we are to walk away from the situation.
May we all learn to be meek as we imitate Christ.