The new you… meek = weak?
“Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.” (Matthew 5:5)
Jesus’ next glimpse into the new you brings a sharp contrast to the ways of this world – whose mantra is based upon the value of self-assertiveness and willful exertion. The deeply-rooted view that: “If it is to be… it is up to me.” Or: “If you want anything in this life you are going to have to take it.”
To hear Jesus talk about being “meek” is ludicrous. No one gets anything in this world by playing it passive or safe.
Yet, Jesus is clearly promising that those who are meek will inherit the earth!
In other words, what this world so diligently seeks to own – is the promised possession of those who choose an exactly opposite path to ownership.
One would think that Jesus would extol the virtue of the strong, the bold, the driven, the passionate. But instead, He speaks of a quality that this world not only rejects, but tends to despise.
So many, in this world, have the perception that Christians are a bunch of “wimps.” We come off as weak, or cowardly, or too passive – and these are not prized virtues of anyone who wants to be successful in this world.
Who can blame them? If Jesus is calling for a bunch of “wimps” – who needs it?!
But is that what Jesus is saying?.. “Come, be weak… and everything will be okay.”
Not at all. The Bible does not equate meekness… with weakness. In fact, it is just the opposite. Meekness, in God’s eyes, is a strength so powerful that you could take whatever you wanted, do whatever you like – but you refuse to do so, out of consideration for others. The meek are those who could trample down the rights of others to assert their own, but they choose not to do so.
When a very manly Jesus said: “I am meek and humble in heart,” He wasn’t kidding.
He was God. He could have come to earth and forced us all to love Him, or worship Him, or pledge our devotion to Him. Even more to the point… He could have come, and wiped us all from the face of the earth. He had the power to do so. He even had a possible motive to do so (The Bible says: “we were His enemies!” Romans 5:10!)
But He didn’t. Instead, He went to the cross, suffered unbelievable suffering and humiliation – and died in our place, for us! This is the very definition of “meek.”
It is strength to endure in the midst of unbearable cruelty, or hardship. Strength to live in joy, in spite of rejection and betrayal. Strength to rise above what would only be natural – and BE something other-worldly.
Something just like God. Whose Own meekness is centered in His enduring love for us. Who has the power to destroy – but chooses to extend unmerited, and unlimited, mercy.
This is the very makeup of the new you.
Prayer focus: God, help me to see the strength of meekness and humility.