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Text Box: The 3rd Step: Be Mighty in Your Gentleness!




Text Box: (Matthew 5:5 NIV) “Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.”
(Matthew 5:5 GWT)  “Blessed are those who are gentle. They will inherit the earth.”
(2 Corinthians 4:10-12 NIV)  We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body. For we who are alive are always being given over to death for Jesus' sake, so that his life may be revealed in our mortal body. So then, death is at work in us, but life is at work in you.
(Ecclesiastes 2:26 NIV)  To the man who pleases him, God gives wisdom, knowledge and happiness, but to the sinner he gives the task of gathering and storing up wealth to hand it over to the one who pleases God. This too is meaningless, a chasing after the wind.
(Psalms 37:10-13 NIV)  A little while, and the wicked will be no more; though you look for them, they will not be found. But the meek will inherit the land and enjoy great peace. The wicked plot against the righteous and gnash their teeth at them; but the Lord laughs at the wicked, for he knows their day is coming.


Text Box: Being poor in Spirit (humble) and compassionate toward your opponent will produce a gentle soul.  Truly happy and satisfied, Jesus says, are the gentle (meek = power under control).  These will win souls because they carry about the death of Jesus in their flesh (having crucified their desires) so that the life of Jesus is evident through their love for others (their love for God’s will compels them) (2 Corinthians 4:10-12). The word used for gentle in the Greek could be better translated as "meek". Meekness never implies weakness.  In contrast to weakness, meekness is controlled strength -- or "power under control".  
A meek person is the person whose convictions about the truth are rock-hard, yet they always expose a soft heart in their relationship with God and others.  A meek person is a moldable person -- a person who is willing and able to grow in their love for God and others.  This person has impact upon contact because they are a jar of clay carrying the message of salvation within them (2 Corinthians 4:7); thus, the power that is displayed through their actions is the power of God and not of themselves!  It is the people who are meek that receive from the Lord everything they need on this Earth.  They will inherit the Earth.  We know Jesus is not talking about the afterlife in this previous sentence. He must be referring to this current life.  After all, don't we have everything we need for this life and godliness (2 Peter 1:3)? Doesn't our God meet our every need in Christ (Philippians 4:19)?
Jesus is the ultimate example of meekness.  The very moment Jesus could have defeated His enemies and show Himself absolutely powerful over them, He submitted to their abuse and pitied them.  
(Matthew 26:53 NIV) Do you think I cannot call on my Father, and he will at once put at my disposal more than twelve legions of angels?
(Luke 23:34 NIV)  Jesus said, "Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing." And they divided up his clothes by casting lots.
Instead of vengeance and offense coursing through His mind, love and mercy were pouring from His heart.  That’s why God gave Him the right to rule over everything (Philippians 2:8-11) – the Earth itself being a footstool for Him!
(Isaiah 66:1 NIV)  This is what the LORD says: "Heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool. Where is the house you will build for me? Where will my resting place be?
How often do we find ourselves longing for something on this earth when the Lord Himself has promised everything to us when our desire is to serve Him!?  The meek person truly inherits the Earth and is blessed, but the selfish are cursed (Hebrews 6:7,8).



In His Footsteps © 1998




Text Box: The 3rd Step: Be Mighty in Your Gentleness!




Meekness could be misunderstood by many to mean “weak”, “pushover”, “mild-mannered”, etc.  Although it is true that we need to be gentle and submissive, meekness is not necessarily synonymous with gentleness and submissiveness.  Meekness has to do with to whom or to what you give your power or control.  To be meek is to be so incredibly strong that you are in control of how your strength is used.  Your strength doesn’t control you -- you control it.  Read Exodus 2:11-15.  After reading this passage, do you think Moses was a pushover?  Do you think Moses was a strong man?  Was he afraid of people?  He was even able to escape Pharaoh!  Now read Numbers 12:3-8.  What do you think made Moses different from any other man?  What made him so humble?  Answering the following questions with the input of a brother or sister would greatly benefit you.  List some qualities that you feel good and strong about in yourself.  How are you using these strengths?  Are you using these strengths for your glory or God’s?  Similarly, if you seem to be “out of control” with certain things or in certain situations, what could you do to be more “in control”?  What can you learn from Moses’ attitude?



Horses are beautiful, strong and passionate animals.  However, they are of little use to humans unless they are tamed.  When a horse is tamed, we say it is broken.  In this “broken” condition it does not lose its beauty, power or spirit.  The horse’s strength becomes focused and useful for its master as opposed to running “wild” under the control of the horse.  The word for meek was used by the Greeks to describe horses that had been broken.  Read Psalm 51:17.  What is it that our Master desires from us?  Look up the word “contrite” in the dictionary.  How does this word compare to “broken-hearted” or “meek”?  Read Isaiah 57:15-21.  In this passage, God describes the attitude of those who receive His mercy.  In Isaiah 66:2-4 God describes what is in store for those who will not relinquish their control to Him.  How are you allowing God to tame you?  Who is in control in your life?  Have you relinquished control and given it to God, or are you still trying to guide yourself?  According to the Scriptures you have read today, what should you do with your strengths, desires and passions?



Greed and covetousness are direct opposites of meekness. Read Ecclesiastes 2:26.  What does God give to the man who pleases Him?  What task is given to the man who does not please God?  Who eventually gets the wealth and material things that were collected?  What is your primary task as a Christian:  to collect wealth or to please God?  Won’t you receive every blessing there is to receive in the end, anyway?  Will you receive what you want, or will you receive what you need?  Have you ever considered that sometimes God may give you something that someone else might need (1 Timothy 6:17-19; 2 Corinthians 9:5-15)?  The focus then, is to use whatever God has blessed us with for His glory and for the furtherance of the gospel.  It is obvious that we are not here as collectors of wealth or property, as Jesus says in Matthew 6:19-24.  Read this passage and answer the following questions.  From verse 19, what must we stop doing?  What must we begin to do when we hear Jesus teaching us these words?  Property and wealth are not evil in and of themselves, it’s how you use them and why you have them!  It’s a question of where your heart is in this matter (verse 21)!  It’s also a question of how you see things (verse 22 and 23).  Whom do you serve?  Where is your heart?  Worrying is a result of having the wrong focus: i.e. greed, covetousness, etc.  Peace and joy are the result of submitting everything to God and forsaking everything else.  This is meekness.  The meek know by faith that everything is theirs already (1 Corinthians 3:21-23).



Learning meekness is all about learning self-control.  Today, use the concordance in your Bible to find every passage that includes the words self-control or self-discipline  (or any variations thereof).  Read through these passages with a brother or sister and discuss this week’s theme in light of these Scriptures.  Open yourself up to the Lord’s words!



The Greatest example of “power under control” is Jesus Himself.  Having at His disposal 12 legions of angels to save Him the moment He gave them command, He decided to submit entirely to God’s will saying, “Not my will, but Yours be done (Matthew 26:37-46).” Jesus did this because He had us in mind (John 3:16).  What makes a person powerful is not necessarily what they can do, but what they refrain from doing for the sake of others.  This self-control (meekness) is the trademark Jesus said His people would have in His Kingdom.  The Beatitudes we are studying are the trademarks of the Kingdom-minded.  They are qualities of those who have chosen to be sons and daughters of the Most High.  Let them become your qualities as well!


Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him. James 1:12

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