Today we are looking at the third step toward happiness. We have seen in these verses that one first needs to be poor in spirit (realizing their own sin) and then be in a state of mourning over this sin. Now we see that the next step is meekness. This will be todays focus.
I think that the word meek is greatly misunderstood today. Most believe that in order to be meek one must become a door mat. The common thought is that those who follow Christ are never to defend themselves (either verbally or physically). It is as if we are to allow every one to walk all over us and to treat us with contempt. Although there are some situations that may merit these passive actions, not all do. Meekness has a very specific and understandable definition.
Meekness is the realization of ones standing with God and others. One who is meek is one who realizes their place. I like to look at it as a chain of command. When in the Army, I had people under my command. These soldiers were to take direction from me and it was my job and my position in which to lead them. Although I had men underneath me in rank, I had a great deal more men that out ranked me. So, to some, I led and after others I followed. I did not allow the men under my command to do what ever they felt they needed to do because I was in a position to guide them. I also did not decide to do what ever I deemed necessary because I had those over me who were in charge and I was obedient to them. I had respect for both groups mentioned above, but there was a difference in how I held myself in their presence. In a relationship with Christ we must have this type of meekness. We need to know our place in view of God who is our master and with men in whom He loves.
Once again, this third step is impossible without the first two steps. One will never know their position in Christ if they do not come to the realization of two things: The first is the knowledge of the righteousness of God, and secondly the depravity of ones sin. Only when these things play out can one truly become meek. It is impossible to “fall in line” if we have not yet realized where we are in this chain of command. We will also view others differently when we mourn over our sin. instead of being prideful and looking down our noses at those who are lost or have found themselves in the mess of sin, those who have mourned over their sin and have realized the awesome grace of Christ, will reciprocate that grace. So, in effect, our being poor in spirit allows us to better view those around us and have empathy for them. We are able to do this due to the knowledge that we also were once lost in our own ocean of sin. We had no way to get out from under that sin other than the mercy of Christ Jesus.
Tomorrow we will look at the fourth step toward happiness; a desire for righteousness. Guess what…this step requires the first three steps in order to take hold in our lives.