J. Upton Dickson, a Christian humorist, joked after writing a pamphlet called “Cower Power,” that he was thinking about founding a society called D.O.O.R.M.A.T.S. The society would adopt a yellow caution light as their logo, and using Matthew 5:5, the D.O.O.R.M.A.T.S.’ motto would be, “The meek shall inherit the earth…if that’s okay with everybody.” Of course, the society didn’t last very long because Upton gave up the plan when someone objected!
Joking aside, to be considered “meek” is not a compliment in today’s society. It carries the stigma of being a coward. A dictionary search will render definitions such as “easily imposed upon, overly submissive, spineless, spiritless, docile, and compliant.”
The world’s view is – meekness is a sign of weakness.
Yet, Jesus declares from a hillside in Galilee, that along with recognizing our spiritual poverty and mourning sin, as His disciples we need to also embrace the characteristic of meekness!
“Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.” Matt 5:5 NIV
Is the meekness of which Jesus speaks the same as being DOORMATS?
Biblical meekness is a result of having the first two Tudes2B in our lives – “poor in spirit” and “mourning over sin.” The Tudes2B (Beatitudes) are like a chain; each attitude “link” leads into the next. They are progressive in nature and characterize our growth as His disciples. The Tudes2B are opposite to the world’s thinking and philosophies. Thus, they are the qualities of Christ displayed in the lives of His followers, through the transforming power of the Holy Spirit.
Meekness was the one quality that Jesus used to describe Himself (Matt 11:29).
In the Garden of Gethsemane, right before His arrest, Jesus demonstrates for us that true meekness is not being weak or passive, and it most certainly is not cowardly!
Jesus agonized over doing the Father’s Will, but He willingly submitted, not out of weakness, but because as hard as the task was, he understood it was worth the pain. (Matthew 26:36-44)
Jesus did not flee from the task, He instead ran to face it head on! He did not just allow it to happen. Confidently, He made it happen and fulfilled His mission. (Matt 26:45-46)
Jesus refused to use force to fulfill His task and induce obedience. (Matt 26:47-54)
Jesus does not defend Himself by lashing out with words or actions (that would be aggression), but He speaks the truth boldly without shame and to the point. (Matt 26:55)
“Blessed are the meek…”
The word Jesus uses for meekness refers to a well-trained, spirited horse. In their wild state, horses are out of control, even dangerous, and therefore not of much use. However, when that strength is trained or made meek, their power can be harnessed for constructive purposes (Proverbs 25:28).
Meekness does not kill the horse, it tames it!
Jesus could have called ten thousand angels to free Him from the cross but He did not. THAT is strength under control!
In His disciples, meekness is strength under control.
Also, meekness does not mean thinking less of yourself than of other people. It does not mean having a low opinion of your own gifts. Meekness means freedom from thinking about yourself at all!
Meekness is willing to suppress its own “rights” for the sake of the greater good (Phil 2:5-11).
Meekness endures injury without bitterness, recognizing that ultimately, God is in control. It does not pay evil for evil.
Meekness is active, lived out daily. (I Thess 5:14-15)
Meekness is not something I can muster up on my own. It comes from daily and hourly submitting to the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit (Gal 5:23).
“…They shall inherit the earth”
An inheritance is something one usually receives upon the death of a relative. However, in spiritual life, we receive our inheritance upon our death. Jesus’ blood bought back the title deed to this earth. One day, God will make a new heaven and a new earth and the dominion that was lost in Adam’s sin will be restored to all those who became children of God and entered His Kingdom (Gal 3:27, I Peter 1:4, Rev 20:6).
Yet, there is a “now” aspect of Kingdom living I inherit when I walk in meekness.
Meekness causes me to be bendable and flexible in the storms of life, as I rest in my Father’s unfailing love to guide and see me through.
I am not constantly on the defensive with others because meekness seeks to defend God and not myself.
I am free from rebellion and pride.
I am content with what I have, knowing that it is better to have God and little than to have much without God.
As His disciples, we are not called to be DOORMATS, but to be bold, yet gentle; to be direct without aggression; to deal with sin, but with love; change the world we live in, not by revolution, but by revelation!