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Sabbath: Meekness in the Crucible — 8 Comments

  1. The beatitudes are seen as a contradiction to the way we think about ourselves in the modern world. Today we like to think about progressing to the top of the pile. We are successful if we win, and are a failure if we give in to others. Next time you drive on a road where traffic has to merge, watch carefully as drivers try and get in front of the other cars they have to merge with. I do it myself. Woe betides the driver who tries to push in front of me.

    But, the Sermon on the Mount turns that idea completely on its head. Mourners, the meek, the hungry and thirsty, the merciful, the pure in heart, the peacemakers, the persecuted, and the reviled are encouraged to be happy. That is madness.

    If you go to a footy match and your team wins, you come home happy and excited and you want to celebrate and tell everyone about it. The Newcastle Rugby League team won the grand final once (it was a long time ago now) and just about every overhead bridge on the highway between Sydney and Newcastle was crowded with fans celebrating their victory. The losers? Well, who were they anyhow? (Newcastle has not won for a long time now and nobody wants to know about them)

    But, Jesus tells us to be happy in meekness. Those are tough words. Meekness goes against the grain in many things we do. I think there is a lot more to this meekness thing than some of the stereotypes we associate with the term and hopefully we will understand what it really means as we study this week.

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  2. I am not sure where today's lesson got it's definition of meekness as "enduring injury with patience and without resentment” from. That is an aspect or perhaps outflow of meekness for sure, but the concept of the Greek praeis is considerably broader.

    Praeis is an inseparable combination of strength and humility - or more specifically, God's empowerment/strengthening manifest in a controlled manner such that the strength is only used to authentically benefit others. This is why meekness is not weakness - it is precisely the opposite. And as such it is a reflection of the nature and character of God - infinite power only ever expressed in perfect beneficence. It is the strongest form of strength and strength expression that exists (see Philippians 2:5-8 that resulted in Philippians 2:9-11).

    I will leave you to reflect more deeply upon this across this week...

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  3. Meekness and humbleness to me mean having laid down the sword of strife. Knowing from whom all blessings come, we demonstrate through meekness and humbleness that we trust that our heavenly Father will set the right course for our life.
    It is not our ego which influences the path we walk; we have given this power to the Father when we believed His Word and live according to it by faith. It is the Father’s spirit which inspires us and encourages us to trust Him explicitly. This provides peace and joy in our heart which overflows to bless others around us.

    I am looking forward to learning more about it. In my view, humbleness and meekness are often misunderstood and considered as weakness. Instead, they are just the opposite; they free the strength of the Lord’s right hand to work freely in our lives according to His Wisdom.

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  4. The author of a quarterly from some years ago defined meekness as "calm and poise while being provoked". The supreme example of this is Christ; we also see that trait exhibited in others in Scripture.

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  5. Reading the book of Numbers 12:3 (Now the man Moses was very meek, above all the men which were upon the face of the earth.), and after having looked at the life Moses leading the Israelites in the wilderness, then I can conclude that meekness is being able to absorb all afflictions of life. Moses was the most afflicted servant of God who ever lived. Afflicted by a people he led.
    Meekness is the character of Jesus, it's being compliant and submissive even when provoked by your subjects.

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  6. Notes from SDA Bible Commentary on Matthew 5:5

    5. Meek. Gr. praeis, singular praüs, “mild,” “gentle,” “meek.” Christ spoke of Himself as “meek [praüs] and lowly in heart” (Matt 11:29), and because He is, all “that labour and are heavy laden” (Matt 11:28) may come to Him and find rest for their souls. The
    Hebrew equivalent of praüs is ‘anaw, or ‘ani, “poor,” “afflicted,” “humble,” “meek.”
    This Hebrew word is used of Moses, who was very “meek” (Num 12:3). It appears also in the Messianic passage of Isa 61:1–3 (cf. on Matt 5:3), and in Ps 37:11, where again it is translated “meek.”
    Meekness is the attitude of heart and mind and life that prepares the way for sanctification. A “meek” spirit “is in the sight of God of great price” (1 Peter 3:4).
    “Meekness” is often mentioned by NT writers as a cardinal Christian virtue (see Gal 5:23; 1 Tim 6:11). “Meekness” toward God means that we accept His will and His dealing with us as good, that we submit to Him in all things, without hesitation. A “meek” man has self under complete control. Through self-exaltation our first
    parents lost the kingdom entrusted to them; through meekness it may be regained. See on Micah 6:8.
    Inherit the earth. Compare Ps 37:11. The “poor in spirit” are to receive the riches of the kingdom of heaven (Matt. 5:3); the “meek” are to “inherit the earth.” It is certain that
    the “meek” do not now inherit the earth, but rather the proud. Nevertheless, in due time the kingdoms of this world will be given to the saints, to those who have learned the
    grace of humility (cf. Dan 7:27). Eventually, says Christ, those who humble themselves—those who learn meekness—will be exalted (see on Matt 23:12).

    [Moderator Note: comments should not solely consist of quotes]

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  7. Meekness is definitely not weakness, it's being resilient against life challenges whilst being able to uplift/serving others in the process of facing our own struggles.

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