Q: How did we receive the Word of God?
A: We received the Word of God through holy men who wrote as they were led by the Holy Spirit.
Knowing this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture comes from someone’s own interpretation. For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit. – II Peter 1:20-21 (ESV)
For Further Reflection
Read Acts 1:15-17 & 4:23-26
A soft (gentle) answer turns away wrath (anger), but a harsh (grievous) word stirs up anger (wrath). – Proverbs 15:1 ESV (Other Translations)
A gentle (soothing, wholesome, healing) tongue is a tree of life, but perverseness (devious) in it breaks the spirit. – Proverb 15:4 ESV (Other Translations)
We see here the power of words. Gentle words can diffuse an angry conflict and bring healing and life to the hurting. Harsh words can stir up conflict and break the spirit of the bruised and battered. God calls us to turn from harsh words and grow in gentleness.
Do your words tend to be gentle or harsh?
What situations tend to stir up harsh words from you?
Ask God to help your words become more gentle.
The more we know his love – the love of our suffering, saving King – the more we are able to endure all things for him.
– Phil Ryken in Loving the Way Jesus Loves
To speak evil of (malign, slander) no one, to avoid quarreling (brawling, be peaceable), to be gentle (considerate, kind), and to show perfect courtesy (meekness, consideration, gentleness) toward all people.
– Titus 3:2 ESV (Other Translations)
The word “gentle” is also translated “considerate” or “kind.” A gentle person considers the needs and feelings of others. A gentle person, in consideration of the other person, is then kind towards them instead of mean.
Other characteristics in the verse all relate to gentleness too. A gentle person doesn’t attack others with her words. She doesn’t speak evil of people, slandering and maligning them. She doesn’t fight with others, quarreling or brawling. A gentle person is courteous, considerate, and polite towards others.
Are you gentle like this with others in your speech and actions?
At work? At school? Driving in your car? On Facebook?
How well does this verse describe your life?
Presque Isle River in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan
The heavens declare the glory of God,
and the sky above proclaims his handiwork.
– Psalm 19:1
For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature,
have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world,
in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.
– Romans 1:20
Behold the Lamb’s glorious Bride, The Lord’s Holy City
The people for whom Jesus died, Arrayed with God’s glory
Dwelling in God’s brilliant presence, In loving unity
Forever in God’s remembrance, With radiant beauty
Behold our God’s new dwelling place, Ablaze with His glory
Home of the redeemed human race, The great holy city
The nations bring their glory in, The gates open always
There’ll be no wickedness or sin, In these glorious days
To the tune of “We Sing the Greatness of Our God”
What we need is more of the love of Jesus
– a deeper awareness of his love for us
and a growing measure of his love in us
as we learn to love other people.
– Phil Ryken in Loving the Way Jesus Loves
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness (meekness), self-control. – Galatians 5:22-23a ESV (KJV)
If the these nine qualities are fruit of Spirit, then Spirit must possess these nine qualities, including gentleness. The Spirit is gentle, like the Father and the Son.
And the gentle Spirit works in our lives to make us a gentle people in the image of our Triune God. The gentle Spirit works in our lives to make us gentle in situations where we otherwise couldn’t on our own. The Spirit works to replace our tendency towards harshness, loudness, and quarrelsomeness with a Spirit-led gentleness.
Where in your life do you need to see the Spirit work the fruit of gentleness?
In what ways are you opposing the Spirit’s work of gentleness in your life?
How do you need to better cooperate with the Spirit’s work of gentleness?
Here are some good posts for your weekend reading:
The Lost Spiritual Discipline – Tim Challies
Watchfulness is “a careful observing of our hearts and diligent looking to our ways, that they may be pleasing and acceptable unto God.”
Eight Ways to Become More Humble – Jane Tooher (GTF)
Thankfulness stops pride growing. We can thank people for things that they do and who they are, and that’s important and encouraging for them. But we’re to thank God for that person, for the way he has worked in them. Thankfulness is a sign of a believer.
Organic Food, Essential Oils, and the Gospel of Grace – Stacy Reaoch (DG)
When promoting our own choices for food and medicine is becoming the latest form of evangelism, we are showing where our hope really lies — and that we are close to forgetting the gospel we say we hold dear.
Your 7 Job Responsibilities as a Church Member – Jonathan Leeman (TGC)
Will you sit back and stay anonymous, doing little more than passively showing up for 75 minutes on Sundays? Or will you jump in with the hard and rewarding work of studying the gospel, building relationships, and making disciples? We need more hands for the harvest, so we hope you’ll join us in that work.
Hope you have a great Lord’s Day with your local church!