Welcome to Christian Holiness Sunday, where we post messages from old-time holiness preachers and writers. Today’s abridged message is from Phineas Bresee, and it called
Blessed are the Meek.
Meek – We are to find the term by its application to character. We find there is no one thing that is so exalted and so insisted upon, or so held up as the crowning glory of Christian life as meekness. Perhaps it is because it is not simply one thing but a blending of many things.
Jesus Christ applies it to Himself as making up much of His character, “Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart.” Paul in writing to the Corinthians said, “Now, I Paul myself beseech you by the meekness and gentleness of Christ,” and in writing to Titus, He makes a very touching appeal to the church. There were many things they should not do, and many things they should do, in the trying condition in which they were placed, the sum of which was that they should show of all meekness and to all men.
One of the elements of meekness is humility. Humility is essentially a Christian virtue. It is not simply an absence of pride and arrogance, but an adjustment of our feelings toward others which comes from having been made a partaker of the Spirit of Him a who regards every human being as of infinite value.
Humility is not an underestimate of self. No one who properly values others can fail to feel and be thankful for his own relation to God, and for God’s thoughts of him. He realizes his own infinite value in the site of God, that he is one of this great family, all of whom he knows are anxious to serve Jesus.
Gentleness is also an element of meekness. That sweetness of spirit, of touch, that reverence for established usages, a readiness for every good work, speaking the evil of no man.
Meekness is the ability to bear and to endure. That great passive quality by which a man pursues his way regardless of difficulties. It receives the opposition of the enemies without becoming their enemy. It receives the blows of this world without resentment. This does not mean that a meek person is never to contend against the wrong, nor that he is never to resist personal violence. It means that back of all is faith in God, and love to all men.
Blessed are the meek; for they shall inherit the earth. The earth here means “land” and as reference to the promised land. What the land was to Israel, what it prefigured to the Church of God, is the meaning of this promise. The histories of the Old Testament or full are spiritual lessons for the New. In all of them there is a meaning far deeper into other than what appears on the surface. God has intended that it should be so. He has intended that that these histories should be types of human life and that through them He should be able to pour the light of His love.
Have you ever looked with earnest longing into the Word of God to see if there was a better way? Have you heard the clear statement of God’s Word in reference to the hear being mad holy and even commanded to be holy? Have you heard, “For if the blood of bulls and goats, and the ashes of an heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh: How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?” Do you wait in the attitude of desire and expectancy? Can you say, with Charles Wesley:
Lord, I believe a rest remains
To all Thy people known,
A rest where pure enjoyment reigns,
And Thou are loved alone.”
Does the hope looking up in you as you wait sing out with these words:
Oh glorious hope of perfect love!
It lifts me up to things above,
It bears on eagles’ wings;
It gives my ravished soul a taste,
And makes me for some moments feast
With Jesus’ priests and kings.
Holiness is, perhaps, the most misunderstood concept in Christianity. Anyone who has striven to follow the life of Christ can likely tell you that it is impossible to do. No one can match His love, His grace, or His compassion. For no one but Jesus is perfect. Once the believer is filled with and empowered by the Holy Spirit, though, he or she is filled to the brim with the love of Christ, and desires nothing more than to please God and follow in Christ’s steps. The love of sin is gone. In its place is a love and passion for others. That is Christian Holiness. This is Christian Holiness Daily.