Nine times in the Beatitudes Jesus pronounces a blessing that comes with the Kingdom. His Kingdom is not of this world, and in fact is counterintuitive to this world. Jesus teaches that being poor in spirit, mournful, meek, etc., are the ways to inherit His blessing. We live on earth, but we live for Heaven. Matthew 5:5 says, “Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.” Let’s breakdown the word:
We live in a world that thinks meekness is weakness and humility is timidity. Nothing could be further from the truth! Meekness is power under control. The Greek word was used to describe medicine. The proper dose heals, but an overdoes kills. It was also used to describe wind. A gentle breeze refreshes, but a hurricane or tornado destroys. It is also the picture of breaking a horse. The idea is not to break the horse of its strength or speed but rather the goal is to break the horse of its stubbornness and self-will. Anyone who continues to live independently and wildly will never experience the blessed life.
The Bible lets us see what meekness (also described as humility or gentleness) looks like in the lives of others. Abraham gave Lot the choice of land in Genesis 13. He could have said, “I’m the oldest. I get the first choice.” Instead, he preferred Lot (see Rom. 10:12 and Phil. 2:3) and let him choose first. Verse 14 tells us that after he did that, the Lord gave him the land as far as he could see. Joseph was mistreated, falsely accused, and thrown in prison, but God exalted him. When his brothers came begging for food, he had the power to get even and seek revenge, but meekness is the opposite of violence and vengeance. It is power under control. David was anointed to be King, but Saul was hunting him down like an animal. On two occasions David had the opportunity to kill Saul before Saul killed him. His men urged him to do so, but David chose to restrain himself and honor the Lord and Saul’s position (1 Sam. 24:6). The ultimate example of meekness is Jesus. Jesus, the Lamb of God, was led like a lamb to the slaughter yet he opened not his mouth (Is. 53:7). “For to this you were called, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps” (1 Pet. 2:21).
Meekness is essential for the Christian life. It’s necessary for peace and prosperity. Many believe Jesus was quoting from Psalm 37:11 when he talked about meekness in Matthew 5: “But the meek will inherit the land and enjoy peace and prosperity.” Looking at the full context of Psalm 37 gives further understanding. Meekness is also essential to understanding God’s word (Ja. 1:19-21), to restoring a brother or sister (Gal. 6:1), for unity (Eph. 4:1-3), when people disagree (2 Tim. 2:24-26), and to win unbelievers (1 Pet. 1:15). We can’t argue the lost into Heaven. We can’t beat people over the head with a Bible, but we can be friendly, have trust-building conversations, show them the love of God, and point them to Jesus.
Moses saw injustice toward his people and in anger killed a man. God put him on the backside of a desert for 40 years, broke him of his stubborn self-will, and gave him strength to lead the children of Israel. Moses was the meekest man, humbler than anyone else, on the face of the earth. Before his conversion, the apostle Paul used his power to arrest and kill Christians. God blinded him and broke him on the Damascus road and brought him to his knees. Inheritance comes when someone dies. Before we can inherit the earth, we have to die to self. We have to stop taking matters into our own hands being impatient, proud, arrogant, and strong-willed. We are to be yielded to God and under control of the Holy Spirit. There is only one gospel and only one way to Heaven. His name is Jesus. “Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father” (Phil. 2:9-11). The book of Revelation says there is coming a new heaven and a new earth and all who inherit it will fall down and worship Jesus saying, “Worthy is the Lamb!” The only way to get the blessing of the Lord is to come on bended knee. Will you today, bow the knee of your heart and confess Jesus Christ is Lord?