Blessed are the Meek, for They Shall Inherit the Earth II

It is important for fully engaged Christians who have their hand to the plow to keep in mind that the teaching of Jesus on the Beatitudes unveils a progressive order for God’s work of grace in the lives of determined and intentional believers as we are awakened to the blessings and relevant power of righteous and godly living.

First, there was the challenge of finding the mark with those that Jesus called “poor of spirit: the mark was found in the acknowledgement and embrace our human insufficiencies and nothingness without the active work and presence of God’s Spirit. If we can find it, Jesus said, the Kingdom of heaven would belong to us.

Second, there was the call to a purposeful and timely mourning over the unsaved and sinful malady of humankind; coupled with the expressed need for a deep godly sorrow over the devastating impact of the present darkness and evil aggression against God. The remedy Jesus said was the comfort and consolation of His Holy Spirit.

Third, meekness and humility were introduced last week in verse five, as the call came forth to surrender the intentions of our heart, the transformation of our worldly and arrogant attitudes, and for the recalibration and righteous re-set of our personal character. The meekness and humility would culminate and manifest itself as favor and blessing here on earth.

For those whom are allowing to the Spirit of God to lead us into this surrender and subsequent change, it is truly producing a sense of nothingness and of need, as ones being brought low and laid into the dust before God.

The sensation and realization of God being allowed once and for all to make literal and lasting change in us is valued far more than the words needed to describe it are worth. Two passages of scripture came immediately to mind.

Psalm 139:1-12

O LORD, you have searched me and known me! You know when I sit down and when I rise up; you discern my thoughts from afar. You search out my path and my lying down and are acquainted with all my ways. Even before a word is on my tongue, behold, O LORD, you know it altogether. You hem me in, behind and before, and lay your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high; I cannot attain it. Where shall I go from your Spirit?

Or where shall I flee from your presence? If I ascend to heaven, you are there! If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there! If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me. If I say, “Surely the darkness shall cover me, and the light about me be night,” even the darkness is not dark to you; the night is bright as the day, for darkness is as light with you.

2 Corinthians 10:3-6

For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh, for the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh, but divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses. We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ, and we are ready to punish all disobedience, whenever your obedience is complete.

The weapons that the apostles used were the searching, deeply persuasive, and humbling truths of Scripture. As these truths were weaponized by the Spirit of God and not the flesh of men the light of the world in Christ Jesus pulled down the strongholds of sin, death, and darkness, and exposed clearly the deep-seeded hostilities and self-righteous pride where ungodly men often take refuge. Nothing is new under the sun…The battle-lines and weapons required for spiritual war against all-unrighteousness and the kingdom of heaven are the same today for both sides - good and evil. Proud, arrogant, immoral imaginations or reasonings—the enmity of the human mind and the aggressive opposition to a new life of salvation and redemption; the regenerated and renewed mind now captive and obedient to Christ, and finally, the singular and narrow path to God in and through Ye’shua the Messiah.

Simply put, we desired to stand before God on the basis of personal merits and accomplishments; we would prefer to exchange our idea of good deeds for our salvation; it is our human nature to win heaven by our own doing. God’s way of salvation is too humbling to suit the carnal mind, for it removes all ground for boasting. Until now. Until the moment we surrender ourselves before Christ as ones poor in spirit, capable of mourning with godly sorrow, in and attitude of meekness and humility. And in that moment of complete surrender we have accessed the blessing and favor of God, and unleashed the arsenal and weaponry of heaven against the prince and power of darkness in this world.

I love the connection here to the story of Naaman. Let me read it to you from the New Living Translation.

2 Kings 5:1–19

The king of Aram had great admiration for Naaman, the commander of his army, because through him the Lord had given Aram great victories. But though Naaman was a mighty warrior, he suffered from leprosy.

At this time Aramean raiders had invaded the land of Israel, and among their captives was a young girl who had been given to Naaman’s wife as a maid. One day the girl said to her mistress, “I wish my master would go to see the prophet in Samaria. He would heal him of his leprosy.”
So Naaman told the king what the young girl from Israel had said. “Go and visit the prophet,” the king of Aram told him. “I will send a letter of introduction for you to take to the king of Israel.” So Naaman started out, carrying as gifts 750 pounds of silver, 150 pounds of gold, and ten sets of clothing. The letter to the king of Israel said: “With this letter I present my servant Naaman. I want you to heal him of his leprosy.”
When the king of Israel read the letter, he tore his clothes in dismay and said, “Am I God, that I can give life and take it away? Why is this man asking me to heal someone with leprosy? I can see that he’s just trying to pick a fight with me.”

But when Elisha, the man of God, heard that the king of Israel had torn his clothes in dismay, he sent this message to him: “Why are you so upset? Send Naaman to me, and he will learn that there is a true prophet here in Israel.”

So Naaman went with his horses and chariots and waited at the door of Elisha’s house. But Elisha sent a messenger out to him with this message: “Go and wash yourself seven times in the Jordan River. Then your skin will be restored, and you will be healed of your leprosy.”

But Naaman became angry and stalked away. “I thought he would certainly come out to meet me!” he said. “I expected him to wave his hand over the leprosy and call on the name of the Lord his God and heal me! Aren’t the rivers of Damascus, the Abana and the Pharpar, better than any of the rivers of Israel? Why shouldn’t I wash in them and be healed?” So Naaman turned and went away in a rage.

But his officers tried to reason with him and said, “Sir, if the prophet had told you to do something very difficult, wouldn’t you have done it? So you should certainly obey him when he says simply, ‘Go and wash and be cured!’ ” So Naaman went down to the Jordan River and dipped himself seven times, as the man of God had instructed him. And his skin became as healthy as the skin of a young child, and he was healed!

It was in that moment when Naaman bowed before the humbling word of God’s servant that he was healed of his leprosy. In the same way, when we in meekness and humility own our humanity, Divine favor is shown to us. We receive the Divine words of Jesus: "Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth." Speaking anticipatively through Isaiah, the Savior said, "The Lord hath anointed Me to preach good tidings unto the meek" (Isa. 61:1). And again it is written, "For the Lord taketh pleasure in His people: He will beautify the meek with salvation" (Ps. 149:4)

While humility of soul in bowing to God’s way of salvation is the primary application of the third Beatitude, it must not be limited to that. Meekness is also an intrinsic aspect of the "fruit of the Spirit" that is manifested and produced through the Christian follower (Galatians 5:22, 23). It is that quality of spirit that is found in one who has been mentored to meekness and temperance by discipline and suffering and brought into a sweet surrender to the purposes and will of God. When we put this into practice, it is that grace in the us that causes us to endure difficulty and hardship, insults and injuries, that makes us ready in humility to esteem and consider others more highly than ourself (Philippians 2:3). We are learning to ascribe all that is good in us to the sovereign grace of God.

On the other hand, true meekness is not weakness. A striking proof of this is furnished in Acts 16:35-37. The apostles had been wrongfully beaten and cast into prison. On the next day the magistrates gave orders for their release, but Paul said to their agents, "Let them come themselves and fetch us out." God-given meekness can stand up for God-given rights. When one of the officers smote our Lord, He answered, "If I have spoken evil, bear witness of the evil: but if well, why smitest thou Me?" (John 18:23).

The spirit of meekness was perfectly exemplified only by the Lord Jesus Christ, who was "meek and lowly in heart." In His people this blessed spirit fluctuates, oftentimes beclouded by risings up of the flesh. Of Moses it is said, "They provoked his spirit, so that he spake unadvisedly with his lips" (Ps. 106:33). Ezekiel says of himself: "I went in bitterness, in the heat of my spirit; but the hand of the Lord was strong upon me" (Ezek. 3:14). Of Jonah, after his miraculous deliverance, we read: "It displeased Jonah exceedingly, and he was very angry (Jonah 4:1). Even the humble Barnabas parted from Paul in a bitter temper (Acts 15:37-39). What warnings are these! How much we need to learn of Christ!”

“Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth." Our Lord was alluding to, and applying, Psalm 37:11. The promise seems to have both a literal and spiritual meaning: "The meek shall inherit the earth; and shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace." The meek are those who have the greatest joy and recognition for the good things in the present life. Delivered from a greedy and grasping spirit, they are content with the things God has given and blessed. "A little that a righteous man hath is better than the riches of many wicked" (Psalm 37:16). Contentment of mind and heart is one of the fruits of meekness of spirit. The arrogant, proud, and restless do not "inherit the earth," though they may own many acres of it. The humble Christian has far more enjoyment in a humble home than the unrighteous has in a mansion. "Better is little with the fear of the Lord than great treasure and trouble therewith" (Proverbs 15:16).

"The meek shall inherit the earth." As we have said, this third Beatitude is an allusion to Psalm 37:11. It is very likely that Jesus was using Old Testament language to reveal New Covenant truth. Like He did with the flesh and blood "bombshell" of John 6:50-58 and the abruptness of the "born of water" revelation of John 3:5. These are more than what is generated on the surface - they regenerate a deeper spiritual meaning. It is the same here with Jesus words "inherit the earth or land." Both in Hebrew and in Greek, the principal terms rendered by our English words earth and land may be translated either literally or spiritually, depending upon the context.

His words, literally understood, are, "they shall inherit the land," i.e., "the land of promise." He speaks of the blessings of the new economy and value system in the language of Old Testament prophecy. As the people of God, the body of Christ under the New Covenant and grace to "inherit the land" is to enjoy the unique and designed blessings of the people of God under the new economy and value system; it is to become inheritors of the blessing and favor of Christ while in this world but not of this world, heirs of God and joint-heirs with Christ [Romans 8:17].

Ephesians 3:1-10

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, 4 even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love 5 he predestined us for adoption to himself as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, 6 to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved. 7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, 8 which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight 9 making known to us the mystery of his will, according to his purpose, which he set forth in Christ 10 as a plan for the fullness of time, to unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth.

[Reference and Resource]: The Beatitudes: An Exposition of Matthew 5:1-12 by Thomas Watson; The Beatitudes by Arthur W. Pink; Reading The Sermon on the Mount by John Stott; An Exegetical Study of the Sermon on the Mount by Abernathy, David, Tehan, Thomas; Lexham Theological Word Study by Magnum, Douglass, Brown; Word Studies in the New Testament by Vincent, Marvin R.

About Reunion Community Church

We are a Bible teaching Christian church in Peoria, AZ. We love God and teach His Truth. We invite you, your family and friends to join us on the faith journey, growing closer to one another, the Christian community of believers at Reunion, and most importantly with God. Read more about the timeless Truth we build our lives and faith in Christ on HERE.

We are conveniently located just off the 101 on 83rd Ave and Cactus Rd. Join us on Sunday mornings, Weds. evenings, and throughout the week at our small groups, meeting in homes around the Valley, including Surprise, Glendale, Peoria, Phoenix, Goodyear, Litchfield, and more. Connect with us on Facebook and watch our live streaming service on YouTube.

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