sermon: Blessed Are the Meek
Another Difficult Fruit of the Spirit
Richard T. Ritenbaugh
Given 20-Dec-14; Sermon #1245; 84 minutes
Richard Ritenbaugh, reflecting on the fiery, feisty, vindictive temperament of Andrew Jackson, and his response to Presbyterian minister Dr. Edgar's question about willingness to forgive enemies, asserts that forgiving one's enemies is a defining mark of a real Christian. Andrew Jackson, after Dr. Edgar's persistent probing, finally displayed a tiny bit of one of the fruits of God's Spirit, prautes, or gentleness (meekness), possibly the second hardest fruit to develop, beginning with humbleness of mind and ending with longsuffering. In the apostle Paul's enumerations of Christian attributes, meekness always appears at near the end, reflecting the difficulty of attainment. Our modern understanding of meekness seems to be at variance with Paul's understanding of prautes. Sadly, language changes linguistic drift have degraded the original understanding, replacing it with "overly submissive and docile," tantamount to weakness and not having a backbone, a notion reinforced by Charles Wesley's hymn, Gentle Jesus, Meek and Mild. The combined force of these connotations makes Jesus look like a doormat. The original denotation of the Greek prautes denoted a quiet confidence, strength, and self-composure, a sign of inner power and self-control, having trust and confidence in God. Meekness is the gentle, quiet spirit of selfless devotion to God, the very antithesis of arrogant pride. It is a quality prompted by God's Holy Spirit on the inside manifesting as graciousness on the outside. The meek person accepts what God is doing as a good thing. Meekness is humble submission to God, allowing us to bear injury without being turned emotionally inside out. Love is a major facet of meekness, a quality exemplified in Moses as he serenely shrugged off the abuses and slander from Miriam, Aaron, and other disgruntled, complaining Israelites. Jesus Christ exercised meekness in response to all the false accusations from the Sanhedrin, scribes, and Pharisees, exercising forbeara
Absence of feeling better than others Acts 8: 27-35 Afflicted Anav Andrew Jackson: His Life and Times by HW Brands Charles Wesley Colossians 3: 12 Compliant Demureness Docile Down-to-earthness Dr. Edgar's probing questions Embracing the fullness of a Christian's duty I Corinthians 13:5 I Peter 2: 18-24 I Timothy 6:11 Fruits of the spirit Galatians 5: 22-23 General Andrew Jackson General Jackson's temperament Gentle Jesus, Meek and Mild Gentle Jesus Meek and Mild Gentleness Granting amnesty to scoundrels Hermitage Herod Humbleness of mind Humbleness Humbly patient Jackson dueling in behalf of his own and his wife's honor Jonathan Edwards July 8, 1838 Kind Longsuffering Love chapter Lowliness Luke 23: 8-11 Mark 14:55-61; 15:1-5 , 33 Matthew 5: 3-5 Meekness as a large flowing river Meekness as quiet inner strength Mississippi River Modesty Mousey people Numbers 12: 1-15 Pilate Progression of virtues The Life of Andrew Jackson - Robert V. Remini Richard C. Trench Patience Proverbs 16: 32 Self-control Slow to anger Overly Submissiveness Susquehanna River
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