Thursday, June 7, 2018

Matthew 5:5 -- On Meekness and Inheriting the Earth

"Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth."
Matthew 5:5

There is an interesting footnote on the word meek here. It says "GR gentle, forgiving, or benevolent; the Hebrew in Ps. 37:11 characterizes as the humble those who have suffered."  I like the idea that we learn gentleness, forgiveness, and benevolence through the things that we suffer... and so the meek who are going to inherit the earth are the people who have suffered--been tested and tried--and thus have learned meekness and patience and love.  Perhaps the meek inherit the earth because they are the ones still standing. :)

I think "meekness" is often misunderstood to be weakness, but if it is something forged through suffering, as is implied in the footnote, then I think instead that it is a very clear choice rather than fear or lack of strength.  The meek have the power and the knowledge to compete and likely prevail, but they choose, instead, to be kind and loving and patient with people who might misunderstand, misjudge, or even condemn them.  They don't have to prove anything or win at all costs.  ... Sounds a lot like Christ.

Today let's look at meekness differently.  It isn't being weak or a loser or a doormat.  It's actually the supreme power of self control--of being calm and okay even when provoked, of loving our enemies, and repenting and learning from our mistakes, and from the people around us.  It's recognizing that other people have value and have something to offer even when they don't respect us or conform to our standards.  Let's start working on the whole inheriting the earth thing by making it a better place for us all.

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