|Volume 20 Number 4 April 2018||
The inspired writer, James, talked about the tongue and spoke of how hard it is to control (James 3). All of us need reminding of the poisoning that the tongue can do from time to time. A reminder of a few basic concepts will be good for us all. I know that I need this reminder from time to time.
Always ask, “How will what I say make others feel?” Way too often we “let our mouths run before we put our minds in gear,” as the old saying goes. It is one of the most desperate feelings when you realize you have said something that should not have been said, and you realize that once it is said it cannot be “unsaid.”
Always ask, “Why am I saying what I am saying?” In other words, what is my motive for saying this? Sometimes, we talk just to be talking. Sometimes, we really want to communicate with others. Sometimes, if we are not careful, we speak to hurt others. At those times, we use words as weapons, and they can be weapons of destruction—even mass destruction!
Always ask, “What is the best thing I can say in the present circumstance?” If I am going to speak, I need to carefully consider what the most beneficial words will be. I have often thought that we ought to have training classes on how to speak to people who are ill or in the hospital, to children, to expectant mothers, to those who are mourning, etc. Too often, our words cause more harm than good, if not well thought out.
Always ask, “Is this a time when silence will be better than talking?” I think that one of my biggest problems is feeling like I have to say something and forgetting that sometimes “silence is golden.”
The bottom line is simple; we need to think seriously before we talk—all the time. That is a simple idea, but it is hard to put into practice. We would be much better off if we would think seriously first—before saying anything.
Blessed Are the Meek
Possessing a proper attitude brings about good results. One proper attitude with good results is exhibited in the biblical phrase, “Blessed are the meek” (Matthew 5:5). The meek are the mild, the gentle, the lowly, the patient and the tame.
Meekness is not weakness. When the Greek word is applied to an animal, for instance, it describes a horse that is tame. A tame horse is gentle, holds no grudges, offers no resistance—even when under abuses—and works faithfully without resentment wherever it is put. The meek are those who willingly and gladly accept God’s will. They do whatever God gives them to do without complaint or disagreeing (1 Corinthians 10:10). They lose their own will by doing the will of God (Galatians 2:20). Christ completely possesses them, and because of this, they are in full possession of self.
A good Bible example of meekness is Moses (Numbers 12:3). The Christian is exhorted to be a meek person. He is to do all things in meekness (Ephesians 4:2). The child of God must put on meekness (Colossians 3:12). He is to follow meekness (1 Timothy 6:11). Subsequently, the Christian instructs others in meekness, too (2 Timothy 2:25). Every child of God likewise receives the Word of God with meekness (James 1:21). When necessary, an erring Christian is restored with meekness (Galatians 6:1). Faithful or practicing Christians show their works with meekness (James 3:13) and show meekness to all men (Titus 3:12).
The meek will be rewarded; they shall inherit the earth. Keep in mind that to “inherit the earth” is a spiritual reward—not a physical one. This simply means that the meek shall enjoy the benefits of the earth. It is theirs (1 Corinthians 3:21-23). God made the earth for His people, and there is not a thing on it or in it, when used as God intended it to be used, that does not belong to them (Psalm 24:1).
The earth belongs to them because they use it in the right way. They use it as God wants His children to use it. They do not permit it to use them, but rather, they use it.
Contrariwise, as we look around us, we may think that the world belongs to the selfish and arrogant. “No, no—not so.“ The meek truly possess the earth. God’s servants are using God’s things in God’s ways, and because of this, they are the masters of the earth. The earth is theirs because God has given it to them to use.