Monday, March 18th, 2013
Everyday Heroes (Part 9)
But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy.
James 3:17 (NKJV)
Learn from Me, for I am gentle.
Matthew 11:29 (NKJV)
Your gentleness has made me great.
2 Samuel 22:36, Psalm 18:35 (NKJV)
Everyday heroes are gentlemen. A gentleman is 'a well-mannered and considerate man with high standards of proper behavior' (American Heritage Dictionary). Jesus is the consummate Gentle Man.
Gentle with what? With us. God is gentle with His teaching, gentle with His preaching, gentle with our bodies, gentle with our fears, our tears and our years. He is gentle with His strength.
Like how? He teaches by example. He gives us answers in advance. Even more, Jesus took the final exam for us and aced it. All we have to do is sign our name to His fame. 'Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children' (Ephesians 5:1).
He preaches by truth. His Words never fail. When we cling to Them, we stand tall and cannot fall. 'Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away' (Matthew 24:35). Nothing can harm us when we stand in His Word.
He heals by power. His Spirit casts out demons like a laser casts out darkness. 'He cast out the spirits with a Word, and healed all who were sick' (Matthew 8:16). Jesus provides for us: mind, body and soul.
He fights by love. 'Perfect love casts out fear' (1 John 4:18). His greatest act of love defeated the enemy's greatest act of war. At the end, Jesus fought without hands, feet, weapons or words--proving once and for all, 'Love never fails' (1 Corinthians 13:8).
He comforts by kindness. He opens His Arms to us as a Father to a child: 'Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest' (Matthew 11:28). 'Weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning' (Psalm 30:5).
He leads by patience. 'The Lord is slow to anger and abundant in lovingkindness, forgiving iniquity and transgression' (Numbers 14:18). Why? 'The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance' (2 Peter 3:9).
He conquers by gentleness (a.k.a. meekness). The meek 'Will inherit the earth' (Matthew 5:5). Why? Because Jesus is a Gentleman. 'Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me' (Revelation 3:20).
He expects us to be gentlemen, too. 'Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand' (Philippians 4:5).
Gentleness is a requirement for godly success.
To Be Continued...
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the Everyday Heroes series.