Transcript Based on a Sermon given 20 June 2009

Fruit of the Spirit - Meekness

Jon Bowles

(PLAY FROM START)

There was once a boy, and he was taught by his parents to fear God. Later in his teenage years, he had some foster parents, and he was taught by these foster parents, who happened to be another race from him and his parents. His foster parents actually put him through a very expensive school, probably one of the best schools in the land. He had this modern godless education, which was there at the time. And he therefore graduated from there and came into the army and he worked his way through in the army and became a General.

As a General, he actually saw action in the south of the country. He then graduated beyond that and became a judge. He condemned people to death with these judgments; and he actually saw that these sentences were carried out. He wasn't a judge who would let the wicked go free. He dealt with cannibals. He had a violent temper. He then sought political asylum and he lived with a Bedouin tribe for forty years.

At the age of eighty he entered the political arena, and he openly opposed probably the most wealthy ruler that happened to be at that day. And of all people, God called him the meekest man alive, at that time. How do you get 'the meekest man alive' out of that kind of individual? How can that be the case?

Because when we look at the subject of meekness, when we look at the subject of being meek, we think of somebody who wouldn't say; 'boo to a goose'. Now I don't know whether you have ever kept geese? But you can almost understand people not wanting to say 'boo' to a goose, because geese can be the most onerous kind of creatures around. They are very protective, in fact the Romans even used to use them as their watchdogs. They used to put geese along the front of their fort and they would warn of anybody who tried to get over the brambles that they used to put around their fort at the time. The phrase; 'wouldn't say boo to a goose', there is something that's a little bit uppity, and you wouldn't even say; 'boo' to it. In other words, you're very meek, very mild, and very mild mannered.

How can this individual - Moses - be indeed described as meek? In fact, turn over to Numbers 12:3 and have a look and just remind ourselves of this. The Living Bible says:

"...(Now Moses was the humblest man on earth.)" (Numbers 12:3-4 Living Bible)

It's not a translation but that's how they interpret this section - In the King James it says:

"(Now the man Moses was very meek, above all the men which were upon the face of the earth.)" (Numbers 12:3)

So of anybody that was there, this individual in his eighties, was the meekest.

Today we are coming to the last but one of the characteristics of the Fruit of the Spirit found over in Galatians 5:22-23. So it is meekness as one of the characteristics of the fruit of the Spirit. I want to show you basically that it means humble. Yes certainly, it does mean humble. In fact it is actually translated as that in certain places. But it is not referring to somebody who can't say 'boo to a goose', who wouldn't have courage, to somebody that is just retiring all the time, a shrinking violet, a wallflower. That is not what the word meekness means. So that's what I would like to do today. The areas I want to go into:

Humility and Fasting (PLAY FROM 05:25)

So let's have a look at the subject in the context of humility and fasting first of all. For those of you who want the Strong's numbers in the Greek the actual word being used is 4236 'praotes', and it literally does mean mild, but it also implies, and the usage of it is;'mild before God'. That's the essential ingredient.

Moses wasn't mild - just look at him; as a General, and the way in which he actually handled the Israelites, he wasn't mild. But before God he was. Before God he was teachable. Teachable before God is certainly the meaning as far as the Greek word here is being used.

In the Hebrew such as Numbers 12:3, it's 'anav' 6035. Again, it means poor, humble. The inference is always 'before God', always teachable by God. This is the inference continually that you find. Turn over to Micah 6:6:

"Wherewith shall I come before the [Eternal], and bow myself before the high God [how do we approach God, what is the approach that we need to use]? shall I come before him with burnt offerings, with calves of a year old [and that's worth several hundred pounds, a good healthy animal probably about three quarters of a ton]? Will the [Eternal] be pleased with thousands of rams [you're looking at tens of thousands of pounds there], or with ten thousands of rivers of oil [multiple millions of pounds there]? shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul [of course that is incalculable, you can't find any price to replace your children]? He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the Lord require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?" (Micah 6:6-8)

So one of the key points is to walk humbly. It can actually be translated 'to be humble in order to walk with God'. The humility is there that is necessary in order to walk with God. This is a key ingredient. With humility and fasting, we've got to have a humility in order to walk with God. That is part of what God requires of us; "...to do justly, and to love mercy..." (Micah 6:8). Yes those two things are very important but so is that third as without that we wouldn't have the walk with God.

Turn over to Matthew 18:1. Christ deals with this particular aspect, and He shows again, if we are going to be in the Kingdom of God, if we are going to be born sons in that Kingdom, there is a frame of mind that we have got to have, and it has got to remain with us:

"At the same time came the disciples unto Jesus, saying, Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven [who is the greatest in this Kingdom that we are looking forward to, and expecting, and here is Christ as the Messiah] And Jesus called a little child unto him, and set him in the midst of them [which tells you something about little children in that day, that they weren't like little children many times today], And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted [from what we are today],and become as little children, [you won't even be in ]the kingdom of heaven." (Matthew 18:1-3)

Unless we have a totally converted and changed attitude and frame of mind, and it is a childlike attitude. There is the meekness and the humility. That is why we fast. We fast because we then start to see ourselves as we really are; which is very, very human. Being very, very human we start to have the relationship between ourselves and God put on its right even keel, because so often the relationship gets out of skew. It is no longer as it should be. Matthew 18:4:

"Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child [it's the humility that is involved, that is what is necessary], the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven." (Matthew 18:4) That is where the greatness actually comes from.

Isaiah 58 is the chapter more than any other you would turn to if you were discussing the subject of fasting. Let's face it, when we fast, we get again this same frame of mind, this childlike attitude before God. It's not just a childlike attitude; it's not somebody who wouldn't say 'boo to a goose'. A child at goose level, would hesitate to say 'boo', he really would! But that's not what's being looked at, it's that approach before God, having that kind of approach before God. Isaiah 58:1:

"Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and shew my people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins. Yet they seek me daily, and delight to know my ways, as a nation that did righteousness, and forsook not the ordinance of their God [it's not talking about physical Israel, it's talking about spiritual Israel here, the Church, directly talking to us]: they ask of me the ordinances of justice; they take delight in approaching to God. Wherefore have we fasted, say they..." (Isaiah 58:1-3)

So people have fasted. How many people do you know out in the world that fast within physical Israel? I don't know of any. So it's got to be talking about people within the Church predominately. Isaiah 58:3:

"Wherefore have we fasted, say they, and thou seest not? wherefore have we afflicted our soul, and thou takest no knowledge? Behold, in the day of your fast ye find pleasure, and exact all your labours [all the things that you are grieving others with, you are doing it for a wrong reason, not for the correct reason]. Behold, ye fast for strife and debate, and to smite with the fist of wickedness: ye shall not fast as ye do this day, to make your voice to be heard on high." (Isaiah 58:3-4)

In Luke 18:12 it talks about the Pharisee who declared that he fasted twice in a week. Apparently some of the sects of the Pharisees did. They fasted twice in the week to try and show how righteous they were. This Gnosticism, this Kabbalah is actually discussed in Colossians 2:23. It is described as will worship. It wasn't just will worship in the Judaic religion. It was will worship throughout the ancient world at that time. It was the Gnostic philosophy within all kinds of different religions. All the gentiles have their Gnostic philosophy as well. It was a will worship, a worship of the will. It says; "...ye fast for strife and debate..." (Isaiah (58:4); to try and gain the edge. If we try and do that, that is not going to work. That is not the way it works. Isaiah 58:5:

"Is it such a fast that I have chosen? a day for a man to afflict his soul? [which gives you an indication of the normal period of time for a fast,] is it to bow down his head as a bulrush, and to spread sackcloth and ashes under him? wilt thou call this a fast, and an acceptable day to the Lord? Is not this the fast that I have chosen? to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke?" (Isaiah 58:5-6)

That's the purpose of fasting. It's; "...to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke." (Isaiah 58:6). Now what is it talking about? If you notice where it says in Isaiah 58:9 that you've done a correct fast. It says:

"Then shalt thou call, and the [Eternal] shall answer; thou shalt cry, and he shall say, Here I am [you need a King James to really understand this]. If thou take away from the midst of thee [it is singular, not plural, it is not talking about in the midst of the Church, it's us, individually! This is where the humility comes from - get the relationship right and we start to see ourselves in the way that we need to.] the yoke [so that you break every yoke. Where is the yoke? It is in the midst of 'thee', singular, not 'you' plural] the putting forth of the finger, and speaking vanity; And if thou draw out thy soul to the hungry, and satisfy the afflicted soul; then shall thy light rise in obscurity, and thy darkness be as the noon day:" (Isaiah 58:9-10)

So it is talking singular. Fasting is our relationship between ourself and God. Not pointing the finger at somebody else, not trying to be will worshipers and forcing God to do our will. It's not trying to puff ourselves up in any way. It's not to smite with the fist the wickedness. It has nothing to do with that. It is that we look at ourselves. Why? Because when we do start fasting we start to have a humility because our stomachs are empty and growling and we become very human. We recognize the humanity that we are, and the relationship then between ourself and God is put into the right spheres.

Fasting is a tool to get that relationship right. It allows us to contrast the flesh, the clay, the 'adamah', [Strong's 127]. The word Adam that you have in Hebrew comes from the word 'adamah', which means soil, dirt. That's what we are. We are 'adamah'; "...for [dirt] thou art, and unto [dirt] shalt thou return" (Genesis 3:19). So that's where the word comes from. Whereas God is Spirit, God is so much higher above us. The relationship has got to be right. The relationship we have with Him has got to be right. We've got to recognize our problems and our difficulties and make sure we put ourselves under the One who is certainly over us. No question about that.

So when we look at meekness, it is this relationship between ourself and God, the humility. We can put that right through fasting. But we fast not the way that the world fasts, to try and do will worship like Gandhi used to fast.

I always remember a particular story of Gandhi that was told to me at one time. That was, that with Gandhi, he was having some kind of a meeting, and a mother came up with her son, and said; "Will you tell him to stop eating sugar?" He said, "Well, you come back next week." I don't think her son was actually with her. I think her son was outside. She said, "I want you to tell him something. He's eating sugar, and it's rotting his teeth and creating a real problem for him." He said, "Well come back next week." So next week she comes back. He says; "Right, bring your boy in here." She brings him in. He says, "Stop eating sugar." That was it. That was the end of it. She said; "Why didn't you do that last week?" He said, "Last week I was eating sugar."

It was this will worship. It was that he was an aesthetic. That's what he was. That was his philosophy. It was aestheticism. That's what you find in Colossians. That's not the purpose of fasting. The fasting that he did was to try and force his own will onto a situation. That's not what we do. We fast to get ourselves submissive towards God, to God's will and purpose and to get the relationship between ourselves and God right.

Therefore, the meekness, the true meekness, the true humility, comes from that approach. It doesn't come from will worship. It doesn't come by forcing our own will. It comes from that approach towards God.

The Potter's Clay (PLAY FROM 18:43)

Coming to the next point about the fact that really we are very much the potter's clay, we can find here in Jeremiah 17:9,

"The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it? [it's a rhetorical question, who can know the human heart and really understand it? The answer:] I the [Eternal] search the heart, I [test] the reins, even to give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings." (Jeremiah 17:9-10)

Eventually, God is going to work with every human being. He will test the reins. I think it actually means the kidneys. The reins are on the back of an animal when you have them on a carriage, or something like that. Therefore the reins are on the back where the kidneys are, this is where the testing and trying the reins is. "I...search the heart, I try the reins, even to give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings." (Jeremiah 17:10). But here in Jeremiah 18:1 it says:

"The word which came to Jeremiah from the [Eternal], saying," (Jeremiah 18:1)

From this Eternal who recognizes the heart is deceitful above all things and is desperately wicked, and in order to test it, He will search the heart and test the reins. Jeremiah 18:2:

"The word which came to Jeremiah from the [Eternal], saying, Arise, and go down to the potter's house, and there I will cause thee to hear my words." (Jeremiah 18:1-2)

Now notice: He will cause Jeremiah to listen to what He is actually saying in this context. Therefore we need to read what is being said, and listen to what He has to say within the context found in this particular chapter, Jeremiah 18:3:

"Then I went down to the potter's house, and, behold, he wrought a work on the wheels [presumably they would actually spin the wheel with their feet, and a big heavy weight that the wheel would go round on]. And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter: so he made it again another vessel, as seemed good to the potter to make it." (Jeremiah 18:3-4)

So in other words, something went wrong and he just squashed it all down and remade whatever it was. He could do that. He could take a lump of clay and turn it into a mould, and he could make a brick out of it. Or he could take that clay and work that clay in such a way that he would make a fine vase of some description, or perhaps a cup for a king. Again, the clay that he would use would have to be malleable, it would have to be plastic in the tactile sense. Jeremiah 18:5:

"Then the word of the [Eternal] came to me, saying, O house of Israel, cannot I do with you as this potter? saith the [Eternal]. Behold, as the clay is in the potter's hand, so are ye in mine hand, O house of Israel. At what instant I shall speak concerning a nation, and concerning a kingdom, to pluck up, and to pull down, and to destroy it; If that nation, against whom I have pronounced, turn from their evil, I will repent of the evil that I thought to do unto them." (Jeremiah 18:5-8)

So He can make whatever He wishes out of that clay. It is entirely in His hands to do whatever He wishes. He is God. He made them in the first place. Remember, we are talking about Adam, the sons of Adam. The sons who came from 'adamah', who were made of clay. The analogy between the two is very profound. Jeremiah 18:9:

"And at what instant I shall speak concerning a nation, and concerning a kingdom, to build and to plant it; If it do evil in my sight, that it obey not my voice, then I will repent of the good, wherewith I said I would benefit them. Now therefore go to, speak to the men of Judah, and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, saying, Thus saith the [Eternal]; Behold, I frame evil against you, and devise a device against you: return ye now every one from his evil way, and make your ways and your doings good. And they said, There is no hope: but we will walk after our own devices, and we will every one do the imagination of his evil heart." (Jeremiah 18:9-12)

So the actual word was illustrated by God to Jeremiah, by saying; go down to the potter's house, have a look at what actually is going on. And here is mankind, made of clay because that's all we are. Yes, there is a spirit in man, but physically our breath, our life comes from the blood, it comes from the air, it comes from oxygen that goes through that. It is a physical existence that we have. When we die, we go back to the clay. We are just like the clay on the potter's wheel. We are being made and fashioned, and the potter can go ahead and fashion whatever he wishes.

So if we are going to become what He wants us to become, if we are going to become fine china, the only way that is possible is that we are malleable, that we are plastic in His hands. If we are not, if we are dry - well, you've seen clay that is dried out? You put that on a wheel and try making anything out of that! Your bits will be going here there and everywhere! It just will not work. It's got to have water on it. That water has got to soften it, it has got to be allowed to soften it, allowed to go and run through it. In running through the clay, you can then start to work it. You have to leave it for a while, you have to leave it to cure. That pottery can then start to be made, to begin to be worked with.

If you want something which is soft, fine china clay with enough water on there - which is able to be moulded - then humanly speaking, it has got to be teachable. Because it is the Word of God that fashions us. It's the Word of God that moulds us, it's His Word - along with His spirit - that allows His hands to work with us; and allows Him as the Master Potter to give us what we need to make sure that we can become the kind of fine china that He needs. If we turn over to Isaiah 45:5 we find here:

"I am the [Eternal], and there is none else, there is no God beside me [equal to me, as far as human beings are concerned. This was Jesus Christ as the only member of the Godhead dealing with them at that time]: I girded thee, though thou hast not known me: That they may know from the rising of the sun, and from the west, that there is none beside me. I am the [Eternal], and there is none else. I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the Lord do all these things [He allows evil to arise, to actually be used to repay evil. In Jeremiah 26:3, you can see that process taking place]. Drop down, ye heavens, from above, and let the skies pour down righteousness: let the earth open, and let them bring forth salvation, and let righteousness spring up together; I the [Eternal] have created it." (Isaiah 45:5-8)

He has created the entire universe. He has created this earth, so that righteousness eventually will spring up and become fruit within this earth. Isaiah 45:9:

"Woe unto him that striveth with his Maker! Let the potsherd strive with the potsherds of the earth [if you want to go and fight somebody, you don't fight the Potter! If you are a pot, go and fight some broken pot somewhere; two pots can go ahead and be smashed together - wonderful fight! That's what he's saying; let them fight together but don't go fighting with your Maker]. Shall the clay say to him that fashioneth it, What makest thou? or thy work, He hath no hands?" (Isaiah 45:9)

He has hands all right; "That they may know from the rising of the sun, and from the west, that there is none beside me. I am the [Eternal], and there is none else." (Isaiah 45:6). There is nothing like the Individual that is actually working with us. Jesus Christ is today working with us - under the Father, yes - but He is working with us, certainly on an individual basis.

So this concept of the potsherds of the earth actually fighting together is a graphic one. Yet it's talking about not striving with your Maker. You don't go ahead and turn around to the Potter, and say; "What are you doing?" The only way you can work with the Potter is to become malleable, because the Potter is actually working with you. You can't go ahead and strive with God; you can allow Him to work with you. Isaiah 45:10:

"Woe unto him that saith unto his father, What begettest thou? or to the woman, What hast thou brought forth? Thus saith the [Eternal], the Holy One of Israel, and his Maker, Ask me of things to come concerning my sons, and concerning the work of my hands command ye me. I have made the earth, and created man upon it: I, even my hands, have stretched out the heavens, and all their host have I commanded." (Isaiah 45:10-12)

In other words, all the creation that He has made is for a reason, for a purpose. Isaiah 45:17:

"But Israel shall be saved in the [Eternal] with an everlasting salvation [an everlasting rescue]: ye shall not be ashamed nor confounded world without end [what He's creating, the reason He is working with us is not just for now]. For thus saith the Lord that created the heavens; God himself that formed the earth and made it; he hath established it, he created it not in vain [not tohu and bohu], he formed it to be inhabited: I am the [Eternal]; and there is none else. I have not spoken in secret, in a dark place of the earth: I said not unto the seed of Jacob, Seek ye me in vain: I the [Eternal] speak righteousness, I declare things that are right. [verse 22] Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else. I have sworn by myself, the word is gone out of my mouth in righteousness [this Living Word, the One that became Jesus Christ, the One under the Father, yes - but He was the One that did everything, nothing was made that was made except by this Individual], and shall not return, That unto me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear. Surely, shall one say, in the Lord have I righteousness and strength..." (Isaiah 45:17-19,22-24)

So basically, we have got to make sure that we understand that the Plan of God is not going to be thwarted. The potsherds can go ahead and fight among themselves, but for something being created on the wheel, to then argue with the One creating it, is foolishness. What does that piece of pottery that is being formed need to do? It needs to soak in the water, and it needs to become malleable. Soaking in the water, soaking in the very Spirit of God, and becoming malleable; having a meekness before that One who is doing the creating. That is the key ingredient.

If we turn over to Isaiah 64:1, so often we want what it says in the beginning here:

"Oh that thou wouldest rend the heavens, that thou wouldest come down, that the mountains might flow down at thy presence [we want Christ to return, we want Him to go ahead and do what we want Him to do; but that's not the way it works], As when the melting fire burneth, the fire causeth the waters to boil, to make thy name known to thine adversaries, that the nations may tremble at thy presence! When thou didst terrible things which we looked not for, thou camest down, the mountains flowed down at thy presence. For since the beginning of the world men have not heard, nor perceived by the ear, neither hath the eye seen, O God, beside thee, what he hath prepared for him that waiteth for him." (Isaiah 64:1-4)

At it says; "But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit..." (I Corinthians 2:10). Isaiah 64:5:

"Thou meetest him that rejoiceth and worketh righteousness, those that remember thee in thy ways: behold, thou art wroth; for we have sinned: in those [ways] is continuance, and we shall be saved. But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf ['adamah, just dust of this earth]; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away. And there is none that calleth upon thy name, that stirreth up himself to take hold of thee [it's not for us to go and try and take hold of God - God is working with us! And what is our job? We have got to be malleable, we have got to be plastic, we have got to have the Spirit of God working in us]: for thou hast hid thy face from us, and hast consumed us, because of our iniquities. But now, O [Eternal], thou art our father; we are the clay, and thou our potter; and we all are the work of thy hand." (Isaiah 64:5-8)

Now this isn't just for ancient Israel way back when. This is for the Church today, and certainly ancient Israel into the future. It very much applies to us today. Isaiah 64:9:

"Be not wroth very sore, O [Eternal], neither remember iniquity for ever: behold, see, we beseech thee, we are all thy people. Thy holy cities are a wilderness, Zion is a wilderness, Jerusalem a desolation [today in the Church this is the case]. Our holy and our beautiful house, where our fathers praised thee, is burned up with fire: and all our pleasant things are laid waste. Wilt thou refrain thyself for these things, O [Eternal]? wilt thou hold thy peace, and afflict us very sore?" (Isaiah 64:9-12)

He says basically; "Now O Eternal you are our Father. We are the clay and you are the Potter. We are all the work of your hands." We have got to get that part right. We have got to make sure that even though Zion is a wilderness, even though the Church is in disarray, in many cases. We've got to have the meekness there, we've got to be as clay. We've got to allow that water to permeate, and allow ourselves to soften under the hand of God, to listen to what He has got to say, because that really is the key. It's the listening which is the absolute crucial thing.

Students Must Be Teachable (PLAY FROM 34:44)

Students or disciples have got to be teachable - we as clay are students, we are disciples. We are learning the Way of God. In order to learn that Way, we have got to be teachable; we have got to be malleable. We have got to allow the Potter to work. Here in Psalm 25, we find many links to how the meek are meek, so that they can be taught. This link between teachability and meekness is very clear within this psalm. It says in Psalm 25:4:

"Shew me thy ways, O Lord; teach me thy paths. Lead me in thy truth, and teach me: for thou art the God of my salvation; on thee do I wait all the day." (Psalm 24:4-5)

Those that are led by the Spirit of God are the sons of God. It is not just led, willy-nilly as a feeling comes over us, that is not what is being talked about. We are led by the Living Word of God. We are led as far as what this Word has got to say, Psalm 25:8:

"Good and upright is the [Eternal]: therefore will he teach sinners in the way [He will teach us and guide us out of the sinful ways and into His ways]. The meek will he guide in judgment: and the meek will he teach his way." (Psalm 25:8-9)

You have got to be malleable, and the only way that we can be taught by God is to have this malleability, this plasticity. Psalm 25:12:

"What man is he that feareth the [Eternal]? him shall he teach in the way that he shall choose. His soul shall dwell at ease; and his seed shall inherit the earth." (Psalm 25:12-13)

As we go on we will see that; "the meek shall inherit the earth..." (Psalm 37:11). The only ones that are going to inherit the earth are the ones who are teachable. Why? Because they are going to have to be teachable in order to be disciples. If we are not disciples, if we are not students, we can't inherit the earth.

That's why even the format of services is the way it is. The reason services are as they are; which are two lectures, with some hymns between, is because Mr Armstrong saw that the purpose that God has for the Church, is to learn. It's to train the trainers, it's to teach the teachers. Therefore, there are two lectures, separated by announcements and a few hymns, but it is predominately lectures so that we can actually learn.

It's the meek He will guide in judgment. It's the meek He will teach His ways. It's the meek who will become students, and are able to become students, and are able to learn, because we've got to have this plasticity.

Turn over to James 1:16. Here again we see this need to listen and to receive the Word, but we've got to do it a certain way. It's actually brought out here in James.

"Do not err, my beloved brethren. Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning. Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures." (James 1:16-18)

So here is the Father, begetting us through the very Spirit of God, with the Word of Truth, and it's the Living Christ, because that's where the Word came from. The Word came from Jesus Christ as the Logos of old. James 1:19:

"Wherefore, my beloved brethren [because of that, this what it's all about, it's by listening to what that Word has to say to us], let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath [don't get angry about being under that Potter's hand]: For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God. Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and [overflowing of evil], and receive with meekness [the same word being used here as used in Galatians 5:23, meekness as one of these qualities, a part of the fruit of the very Spirit of God] the engrafted [or implanted] word, which is able to save your souls." (James 1:19-21)

So it is absolutely vital that we do - as that is how the Word is to be received; it is through this teachableness. It is not just being meek and mild; it's not just not saying boo to a goose. It's making sure that we are submissive and humble before God, so that He can then teach us, and work with us, as a Potter with the water that's on the clay - which we are. Yes, certainly that way, but more than that, also with His Words that came through Jesus Christ, the Living Word of God, and gave us an example. He came and died to give us an example. Yet, how many times we don't do that?

It is interesting, if we go back to that example of Moses over in Numbers 12 and notice what the problem was here, and why was this little insert in verse 3 is there. Numbers 12:1:

"And Miriam and Aaron spake against Moses because of the Ethiopian woman whom he had married: for he had married an Ethiopian woman." (Numbers 12:1)

So he had married an Ethiopian woman. Now who exactly this one was is not absolutely clear. It is probably, according to Josephus, a wife from an Ethiopian campaign. There is however, the possibility that she could be a Cushite, a daughter of Jethro in Midian, where he stayed for forty years. I personally don't think that, that is most likely the case. Whoever it was, there was a criticism of him, the criticism was valid, it was genuine. But I want you to notice what the problem really was, Numbers 12:2:

"And they said, Hath the [Eternal] indeed spoken only by Moses? hath he not spoken also by us? And the [Eternal] heard it." (Numbers 12:2)

It was, where did the Word of God come from? That was the problem. Where was that Word coming from? "Is it only through this guy, Moses?"" Now remember, who is actually making this criticism? Miriam and Aaron. Aaron was three years older than Moses. He was his elder brother. Miriam was even older still, an older sister, who could well have been that girl who was watching in the bulrushes, and saw Pharaoh's daughter pick him up out of the bulrushes. She probably cleaned his backside, and gave him nappies and all the rest of it; that was Miriam.

But the Word of God is the Word of God, and where it comes from is absolutely vital. We need to receive that Word with meekness and listen to it, recognizing the source - and that was the problem. It wasn't whether he married or didn't marry an Ethiopian woman. The problem was, they were not recognizing the Word of God when they heard it. That was the major problem. They didn't accept it with meekness, and in that context it says in Numbers 12:3:

"(Now the man Moses was very meek, above all the men which were upon the face of the earth.) And the [Eternal] spake ['yelled', is what the Hebrew actually says, He shouted at them, this was the One that became Christ, He shouted at the three of them] unto Moses, and unto Aaron, and unto Miriam, Come out ye three unto the tabernacle of the congregation. And they three came out." (Numbers 12:3-4)

And he dealt with Miriam. The source of the problem was obviously Miriam. Christ had no messing about. He made sure she stayed out of the camp for a week. It is very, very clear, that even though she was his big sister, even though Aaron was his elder brother; that did not cut it at all with God. There was a respect for the Word of God that was coming and it was to be received with meekness, the way Moses received that Word. That is why that verse is in there, because Moses received the Word with meekness.

How did he do that? The Spirit of God was working with him, certainly. It was working with him, allowing him, giving him that water to make him malleable. Christ certainly dealt with this situation. Christ as the Logos, was actually angry with what was going on, was angry with them.

Turn to Galatians 5 and have another look at that. Remember it does say, as we have many times brought out, if we; "...Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh." (Galatians 5:16). If we have the Spirit of God working through us, we have the characteristics coming as fruit. That is the way you combat the fleshly problems that we've got. As it says here in Galatians 5:18:

"But if ye be led of the Spirit, ye are not under the law." (Galatians 5:18)

The law has no effect on you. Why? Because you are led by the Spirit. Your mind is going down the same way, and the same mindset as God's mind. God does not break His Law. God keeps His Law. So if we are led by the Spirit, if we have the fruit of the Spirit, we will keep the Law; "For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God." (Romans 8:14), and you don't therefore fulfil the works of the flesh. Galatians 5:22:

"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law [the interesting thing is, it then goes on...]. And they that are Christ's have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit [you put to death the old man, but now you walk in the Spirit, being led by the Spirit as a very child of God]. Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another." (Galatians 5:22-26)

That doesn't have any part to play within that context. Galatians 6:1

"Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual [you who have got this Spirit working in you, that know the way forward, and know the path of life], restore such an one in the spirit of meekness [not only is the meekness on the person who is being taught or corrected there, but the one doing the restoring has got to be meek also]; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted." (Galatians 6:1)

In meekness, as we are dealing with one another. Let the potsherd strive against each other? No, no, no - not if we are converted. Each piece of pottery has got to be relaxed sufficiently and has got to have the water on it sufficiently within it, so that it is malleable and can then be used. As one works with the other, we have got to make sure that we have this same malleability, this same meekness, this same teachableness because we are all students together.

Turn to I Peter 5:1, where it talks about the ministry:

"The elders which are among you I exhort, who am also an elder, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that shall be revealed [looking into the future, and being part of the very family of God]: Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; Neither as being lords over God's heritage, but being examples to the flock." (I Peter 5:1-3)

That's what it's talking about in Galatians 6, verse one. "...[let him] restore such an one in the spirit of meekness..." (Galatians 6:1). And we in the ministry have got to be meek. That is something that unfortunately was not so true in the past and not always true today in certain areas. We have got to make sure that that is the case. We are students, we are all students together. A student or a disciple has got to be teachable, and the teachability is the meekness.

Where does it come from? It comes as a product with the Spirit of God. The Spirit of God produces the teachableness so that we are supple, we are flexible. It's like water going onto clay so that we as the clay, as the Adam, as the sons of Adam and daughters of Adam, the 'adamah, can be moulded by God. That flexibility is given to that clay and allows that process to take place.

It is unfortunate that this was not always true, it was not a case that we are always examples to God's flock. "...considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted." (Galatians 6:1). All of us have got to make sure that we do that. When I say all of us, I don't just mean us ministers; I mean all of us, because we are training to be teachers. We are carrying on in the same frame of mind, as Christ Himself was. He did say; "...for I am meek and lowly in heart..." (Matthew 11:29). It's talking about even Christ Himself was meek. He was submissive to God. He didn't do anything except the Father told Him.

Part of the reason I bring that out, is because I gave this sermon many years ago, twenty years or more ago. I gave this sermon previously and wondered why so many begin being teachable within the Church, and yet you come towards the end of their life in the Church, or you see people down several years in the Church, and they are no longer teachable. It is only now, in hindsight - looking backwards at the problem that we saw - we find that no, these people didn't have the Spirit of God, probably. Now it's not for me to judge. That's for God to make these decisions.

It is interesting that it talks about; "They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us..." (I John 2:19), which we will read in a minute. We've got to be led by that Spirit of God and softened. When I prepared this sermon, I thought what is the problem? Why are some teachable before, when they were baptized, yet down a few years they are no longer teachable, no longer malleable, no longer being flexible, having this meekness, this plasticity of the clay.

Meekness Must Grow (PLAY FROM 51:55)

Let's have a look at the fact that this meekness has got to grow, because it is not something we would have at baptism but then disappears.

What I think happened in the past, what I think actually took place, is that people used to come into the Church and they accepted the doctrines. They accepted the Sabbath, they accepted unclean meats, they accepted going to services with a suit and a tie, and all these bitty changes that people make when they first come into the Church. Having done that, that's it - what more do I lack? "If you want to enter into life, keep the commandments". So they start keeping the commandments on a physical level, and have no concept at all of the spiritual. They have never been converted. They have never become as little children. Therefore, this meekness isn't there. Therefore they come into Church, they get all the boxes ticked, they get all the bits put right, they then sit up proudly and say, "Well that's it, that's me, sorted." I think that actually took place.

We haven't even started to go past first base, doing those few basic physical things - it's the righteousness of a Pharisee. It doesn't mean anything, because it's the heart that's got to change. It's got to be leadership from the very Spirit of God. Meekness has got to be as a Fruit of the Spirit, of the water of the Spirit of God changing our very internal approach to everything. That has got to be there; "For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God." (Romans 8:14). Led by the Holy Spirit if we are to be the very sons of God.

Turn to I John 2:1, and let's have a look and just understand that this meekness as a fruit, has got to grow. It's not something we have at baptism, and we get it all sorted and then we stand up very, very proud and think, right, now we're sorted! That's not the way it works at all. So what I saw, and what I was witnessing, when I gave this sermon previously, I was trying to explain it. I was looking at something which only now, looking backwards do I see. There were an awful lot of people there that were never with us, and never part of us. I John 2:1:

"My little children [it actually says, my 'infants', you go check it, Strong's 5040 the word there is infant, little tiny baby], these things write I unto you, that ye sin not [that's your basis, your start, you don't sin, you don't break God's Law]. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous:" (I John 2:1)

The blood of Christ covers all sin. Down in verse 5:

"But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected [it is a process, so meekness doesn't just stop; you don't just have it at baptism and that's it, it's got to go on and actually grow and increase]: hereby know we that we are in him [this is how we can see that we are living in the same kind of flesh that Christ had, as a Son of God]. He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also so to walk, even as he [that is Christ] walked." (I John 2:5-6)

So we have to make sure we walk in a certain way. In verse 12 it says:

"I write unto you, ['infants', I stress that because it uses a different word when it talks about little children in other places] because your sins are forgiven you for his name's sake." (I John 2:12)

That's the starting point. As far as I can tell, he is talking in this first batch of this particular passage about spiritual infants, who have just started to come into the Church, and just started to understand. The first basic understanding is, that their sins are forgiven. Their sins are wiped away, wiped clean. You start with baptism - that's your starting point. I John 2:13:

"I write unto you, fathers [those who have been around for a long time] because ye have known him that is from the beginning [you have a relationship with Him, and that has progressed from merely having your sins forgiven, you now have progressed to actually knowing Him, to having daily contact with Him]. I write unto you, young men, because ye have overcome the wicked one [somebody who is not an infant, but not a father - in between - who has found how to actually overcome sin, to grow, develop and overcome Satan]. I write unto you, [young] children, because ye have known the Father." (I John 2:13)

Because you have actually established this knowledge of getting to know the Father; "...I write unto you, [young] children..." (I John 2:13). There's a different word used, Strong's 3813, you can check it. It bridges the gap between the first passage which is talking, I personally feel, spiritually, and the second group, probably talking physically, people who have been around a certain length of time, physically. I John 2:14:

"I have written unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. I have written unto you, young men, because ye are strong, and the word of God abideth in you, and ye have overcome the wicked one [these are young men that are in the Church]. Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him." (I John 2:14-15)

They are incompatible. You can't love this age and be completely immersed in this age and also have a love of the things of God, because this age is the counterpoint to the things of God. I John 2:16:

"Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever. [young] children..." (I John 2:16-18)

Now here are people who are young children. What does he say about young children? "...I write unto you, little children, because ye have known the Father." (I John 2:13). You that know the Father, who now have this contact with the Father and have had your sins forgiven. This is the next stage. You now know the Father. I John 2:18:

"...it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist shall come, even now are there many antichrists; whereby we know that it is the last time." (I John 2:18)

We are right at the end time. Remember, the section here is that meekness as a fruit has got to grow. There is a progression there that he is referring back to between verses twelve and fourteen. It is a progression within the Church, it develops and grows. We have got to allow that Word, as His disciples, to grow and develop. I John 2:19:

"They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us..." (I John 2:19)

If they had been in this growth process, if they had indeed been growing, if they had indeed been meek and that meekness was growing as it should, they wouldn't have gone out away from us. And here we find ourselves today, a certain position, and we read scriptures such as; "...because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved." (II Thessalonians 2:10). That's the problem. Another one is; "...they sit before thee as my people, and they hear thy words, but they will not do them...[they listen] as a very lovely song..." (Ezekiel 33:30-33). They just like something that is human in its form. I John 2:19:

"They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us: but they went out, that they might be made manifest [you can see what is going on] that they were not all of us. But ye have an [anointing] from the Holy One, and ye know all things." (I John 2:19-20)

You are different, that's the difference. It is this anointing; it is this Spirit of God that is given to us so that there is a growth process. It is growing even in this meekness, in this teachability, being able to understand and being able to be taught. It says in I John 2:27:

"But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things..." (I John 2:27)

As we went through last week about faith, the Spirit of God is given to us and brings to mind the things we have learned, to reveal to us, and allow us to see. That seeing allows us to then be taught, but we have to have the meekness there as well. We have got to be teachable to be taught. We have got to be teachable if we are to be a disciple, to be a student, and the moment we lose that teachability, we cease to learn. It is the meek that will inherit the earth, as we will go on and see. I John 2:27:

"...the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him. And now, [infants], abide in him [get yourself sorted and make sure you understand that even as the infant, your sins are forgiven you for His name's sake, for His authority sake]; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming." (I John 2:27-28)

Keep your foundation there all the time; the sacrifice of Christ covering sin. Then as little children make your contact with the Father, as young men, overcome the wicked one, as fathers - you know Him. You get to really know Him, that is from the beginning. It is a progression, it is something that has got to grow, and this meekness, this teachability as a student has got to grow.

We can see some bad examples how this didn't happen, we see that for a king. Here we see a king who didn't remain teachable, who didn't allow that teachability to grow, which he should have; and then God obtained somebody who was after His own heart who He then put the very Spirit of God in, which was David. Here in I Samuel 9:21 it says:

"And Saul answered and said, Am not I a Benjamite, of the smallest of the tribes of Israel? and my family the least of all the families of the tribe of Benjamin? wherefore then speakest thou so to me?" (I Samuel 9:21)

What Samuel said was; "...And on whom is all the desire of Israel? Is it not on thee, and on all thy father's house? (I Samuel 9:20). He said; "Who are you talking to? I am a member of the smallest family and the smallest tribe." That was his attitude and frame of mind. That was his meekness at that time. But over in I Samuel 15:17 you find:

"And Samuel said, When thou wast little in thine own sight, wast thou not made the head of the tribes of Israel, and the [Eternal] anointed thee king over Israel?" (I Samuel 15:17)

Now we are to become kings and priests. It is the meek that will inherit the earth. And finally in I Samuel 16:1:

"And the [Eternal] said unto Samuel, How long wilt thou mourn for Saul, seeing I have rejected him from reigning over Israel? fill thine horn with oil, and go, I will send thee to Jesse the Bethlehemite: for I have provided me a king among his sons." (I Samuel 16:1)

So if we are not teachable, if we are not remaining little in our own eyes and in our own sight, we cannot remain as kings. The very example we have physically of Saul, and the reason why it's here - this is not here for them, this is here for us, for us as kings. Look at what happened to the first king and realize the problem. What was the problem that actually took place? Let's have a look at I Samuel 13:9:

"And Saul said, Bring hither a burnt offering to me, and peace offerings. And he offered the burnt offering." (I Samuel 13:9)

He offered the burnt offerings because Samuel didn't come in time. Is that somebody who is meek and teachable, who didn't put himself forward as previously - the way he was in I Samuel 9? No, it was a different type of attitude, a different type of approach. In I Samuel 14:24 it talks about how he actually declared a fast in battle for whatever reason. In I Samuel 15 is the real major problem - it was a problem also in chapter 13 as well, but in chapter 15 it says:

"Samuel also said unto Saul, The [Eternal] sent me to anoint thee to be king over his people, over Israel: now therefore hearken thou unto the voice of the words of the [Eternal]." (I Samuel 15:1)

It is the Word of the Eternal coming from Samuel, coming from His prophet. This was direct to Saul, this was not something he dreamt up himself in any way. I Samuel 15:2:

"Thus saith the [Eternal] of hosts, I remember that which Amalek did to Israel, how he laid wait for him in the way, when he came up from Egypt. Now go and smite Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have, and spare them not; but slay both man and woman, infant and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and ass." (I Samuel 15:2-3)

Now you say, "Why is it that God said to do that?" Well you go and look in some of the history of these areas and some of the stuff they dig up. These people were having sexual worship with animals involved. So everything had to be destroyed, just wiped off the face of the earth. They were sacrificing children. They were worshiping Baal and Ashtoreth in evil ways. God's command was to wipe them off the face of the earth. Why? Because He had seen right down into the future; when He was going to resurrect them and actually deal with them in the future. But in I Samuel 15:9:

"But Saul and the people spared Agag, and the best of the sheep, and of the oxen, and of the fatlings, and the lambs, and all that was good, and would not utterly destroy them: but every thing that was vile and refuse, that they destroyed utterly." (I Samuel 15:9)

So they only obeyed what they wanted to obey. They weren't obedient, they weren't meek, they weren't teachable. It was Saul that was specifically commanded. I Samuel 15:17:

"And Samuel said, When thou wast little in thine own sight, wast thou not made the head of the tribes of Israel, and the [Eternal] anointed thee king over Israel? [Verse 22] And Samuel said, Hath the [Eternal] as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the [Eternal]? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams [to have a meekness there, which he had before, he was teachable, he was pliable]. For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the [Eternal], he hath also rejected thee from being king." (I Samuel 15:17,22-23)

It's something that doesn't just have to be there when you are first made king, or first baptized. It's got to grow. It's got to remain there all the way through. Contrast that with David's approach, and David's conversion grew over his time. It grew. He made some horrendous mistakes, but the meekness remained and the meekness itself, even grew. He was converted. As it says in I Samuel 15:34:

"Then Samuel went to Ramah; and Saul went up to his house to Gibeah of Saul. And Samuel came no more to see Saul until the day of his death: nevertheless Samuel mourned for Saul: and the [Eternal] repented that he had made Saul king over Israel." (I Samuel 15:34-35)

Turn over to II Corinthians 3:12. We are to become kings, so we are looking at meekness as a fruit that has got to grow. We as kings - is what is being talked about here - and this meekness as a fruit that has to grow, and this is how it grows:

"Seeing then that we have such hope, we use great plainness of speech: And not as Moses, which put a veil over his face, that the children of Israel could not stedfastly look to the end of that which is abolished ['being set to one side' - as eventually his face would stop shining]: But their minds were blinded: for until this day remaineth the same vail untaken away in the reading of the Old Testament; which vail is done away in Christ." (II Corinthians 3:12-14)

They can then start to see. They start to be able to be taught once that sacrifice of Christ is applied. They are able to have the meekness that is necessary. II Corinthians 3:16:

"But even unto this day, when Moses is read, the vail is upon their heart. Nevertheless when [that heart] it shall turn to the [Eternal], the vail shall be taken away." (II Corinthians 3:15-16)

They will suddenly begin to see and be able to understand. The understanding is given when repentance takes place, when they turn from one way to another way. When they meekly submit to the Word of God, and allow that Word of God to be able to change them. Allow the Spirit of God to be able to soften, and allow us to become malleable as a potter's clay. And allow this human frame, this clay as we are, to be worked with by the Master Potter, to be worked with by God, Himself. II Corinthians 3:16:

"Nevertheless when it [the heart] shall turn to the Lord, the vail shall be taken away [that starts the process, and then it has got to grow]. Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty [Christ is working through the very Spirit of God, that is given to us; He, and the Father work through that Spirit, and how is it done?]. But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass [in a mirror, it's like all of us looking in one with an open face] the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image [there's the image of Christ, you look in the mirror and you see your own image subtly changing day by day by day from one to the other] from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord." (II Corinthians 3:16-18)

It is being transformed, being completely converted, being changed. That's the meekness that has got to grow, that willingness to allow that Spirit to work on us. The king has got to remain in a malleable state all the way through.

The Meek Will Inherit the Earth (PLAY FROM 1:12:46)

Let's read over in Matthew 5, where it talks about the meek inheriting the earth because that's really what we are looking at. This is the reason for it, this is why it's part of the Fruit of the Spirit. This is why it is one of the characteristics that are given over in Galatians 5:22-23. Matthew 5:5:

"Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth [that's a quotation from Psalms 37:9,11; notice the next verse;] Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled." (Matthew 5:5-6) We fast, literally fast. We hunger and thirst so that we can have righteousness, and it is in the same context of meekness.

Turn over to Psalms 76:1, the entire psalm is very interesting because it is talking about Jesus Christ returning:

"In Judah is God known: his name is great in Israel. In Salem [or, the Peace, you are looking at the dwelling place of God, Jerusalem] also is his tabernacle, and his dwelling place in Zion [the Church is so often referred to as Zion]. There brake he the arrows of the bow, the shield, and the sword, and the battle. Selah. Thou art more glorious and excellent than the mountains of prey [you can get masses and masses of prey, that's the spoil, all the goods you want].The stouthearted are spoiled, they have slept their sleep: and none of the men of might have found their hands. At thy rebuke, O God of Jacob, both the chariot and horse are cast into a dead sleep." (Psalm 76:1-6)

We probably will see this happen when Christ returns and we are resurrected and we see Him fight against the enemy. It talks about the actual flesh just falling away from people, just disintegrating. Psalm 76:7:

"Thou, even thou, art to be feared: and who may stand in thy sight when once thou art angry? Thou didst cause judgment to be heard from heaven; the earth feared, and was still, When God arose to judgment, to save all the meek of the earth. Selah." (Psalm 76:7-9)

You think about that, 'Selah', which is what Selah means. "...God arose to judgment, to save all the meek of the earth..." (Psalm 76:9). That is why He is returning. If we are not meek, if we don't have this quality, this aspect, this very part of the Fruit of the Spirit, what is the point in Christ returning? We have got to be teachable. We are to be students, disciples. That requires a certain frame of mind that allows God to work on us like a potter. The next verse is very interesting. Psalm 76:10:

"Surely the wrath of man shall praise thee: the remainder of wrath shalt thou restrain." (Psalm 76:10)

In other words, when you come back, the wrath of man against you, which will happen, it says it will praise you because they will be wiped out. The remainder of the wrath - the remainder of anything against you - you will restrain, you will put down. Psalm 76:11:

"Vow, and pay unto the [Eternal] your God: let all that be round about him bring presents unto him that ought to be feared. He shall cut off the spirit [breath] of princes: he is terrible to the kings of the earth." (Psalm 76:11-12)

He is going to put down all the kings of the earth. Who will be there? Zion will be there, and the meek will be there. He says; "When God arose to judgment, to save all the meek of the earth..." (Psalm 76:9). That is why He is returning.

Let's have a look at just a few verses in Isaiah. It is the kings - the meek kings - who will inherit the earth. Those who are being students to be kings and priests, they are the meek ones that will inherit the earth:

"And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots: And the spirit of the [Eternal] shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the [Eternal]; And shall make him of quick understanding in the fear of the [Eternal]: and he shall not judge after the sight of his eyes, neither reprove after the hearing of his ears: But with righteousness shall he judge the poor, and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth: and he shall smite the earth: with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips shall he slay the wicked." (Isaiah 11:1-4)

Why? "...for the meek of the earth..." (Isaiah 11:4). The meek of the earth is the reason for Him coming back; "...but for the elect's sake those days shall be shortened." (Matthew 24:22). They are the meek of the earth, those that are destined in that direction. Let's turn over to Isaiah 66:1:

"Thus saith the [Eternal], The heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool: where is the house that ye build unto me? and where is the place of my rest? [Where is this temple to whom Christ is going to return, this spiritual temple? Where is it? What's it like? What are the qualities that are necessary?] For all those things hath mine hand made [heaven my throne, earth my footstool, all that I've made], and all those things have been, saith the [Eternal: they aren't just freshly created, they were created many, many, years ago] but to this [house, this new creation, this dwelling place] will I look, even to him that is poor and of a contrite spirit, and trembleth at my word." (Isaiah 66:1-2)

So it's a meekness that is there, a teachableness. Teachableness under the Word of God can be understood, because the Word of God has a place to go. It has the Spirit of God there that is making it malleable, that is allowing the clay to be softened, so that the Word of God can go in there and can then construct whatever God wants as the Master Potter. "For all those things hath mine hand made, and all those things have been [all the heavens and the earth, they were made ages ago] ...but to this man [this dwelling place] will I look, even to him that is poor and of a contrite spirit, and trembleth at my word." (Isaiah 66:2). That's the important point. Isaiah 66:3:

"He that killeth an ox is as if he slew a man...Yea, they have chosen their own ways, and their soul delighteth in their abominations. I also will choose their delusions, and will bring their fears upon them; because when I called, none did answer; when I spake, they did not hear: but they did evil before mine eyes, and chose that in which I delighted not." (Isaiah 66:3-4)

So when we read that in the context in which we find ourselves today, and the context of the apostasy, that took place in the Church, it makes the hair stand up on the back of your neck, if you really understand what it's talking about. The context here is coming after the new heavens and the new earth, the hundred year period, and going back into the Millennium, and then it says; "Thus saith the [Eternal], where is this temple to which Christ is going to return?" (Isaiah 66:1 paraphrased). Isaiah 66:5:

"Hear the word of the [Eternal], ye that tremble at his word [the meek of the earth, the teachable, the ones that have got the Spirit of God that makes them malleable]; Your brethren that hated you, that cast you out for my name's sake, said, Let the [Eternal] be glorified: but he shall appear to your joy, and they shall be ashamed." (Isaiah 66:5)

We need to understand that. We need to make sure that we allow that Spirit of God to make us malleable, make us soft in the Potter's hands; to make that human clay not stiffnecked any more, but allowing Him to actually form us to whatever He has to make us the kings of the earth. Isaiah 66:6:

"A voice of noise from the city, a voice from the temple, a voice of the [Eternal] that rendereth recompence to his enemies. Before she travailed, she brought forth; before her pain came, she was delivered of a man child [here is spiritual Israel, the Church, before she even started she had a man child, which was Christ]. Who hath heard such a thing? who hath seen such things? Shall the earth be made to bring forth in one day? or shall a nation be born at once? for as soon as Zion travailed, she brought forth her children." (Isaiah 66:6-8)

We are looking to the travail of Zion, the Church, and the children of God coming at the resurrection. Isaiah 66:9:

"Shall I bring to the birth, and not cause to bring forth? saith the [Eternal]: shall I cause to bring forth, and shut the womb? saith thy God. Rejoice ye with Jerusalem, and be glad with her, all ye that love her: rejoice for joy with her, all ye that mourn for her: That ye may suck, and be satisfied with the breasts of her consolations; that ye may milk out, and be delighted with the abundance of her glory. For thus saith the [Eternal], Behold, I will extend peace to her like a river, and the glory of the Gentiles like a flowing stream: then shall ye suck, ye shall be borne upon her sides, and be dandled upon her knees. As one whom his mother comforteth, so will I comfort you; and ye shall be comforted in Jerusalem [in the future, in that New Jerusalem that He will make, He says that we will indeed]. And when ye see this, your heart shall rejoice, and your bones shall flourish like an herb: and the hand of the [Eternal] shall be known toward his servants, and his indignation toward his enemies." (Isaiah 66:9-14)

But this house that He is talking about, and talking to, are these people that are of a poor and contrite spirit, that have a meekness there, a teachability, so that they do indeed, 'tremble at My Word.' They do listen to the Word of God.

Let's go back to Matthew 18:1 and just remind ourselves of this scripture because it is so crucial to this particular subject:

"At the same time came the disciples unto Jesus, saying, Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven [who's the greatest king, of all the various kings and priests that we are going to be]? And Jesus called a little child unto him, and set him in the midst of them, And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted [are changed from being stubborn clay, clay that is only human, clay which is 'adamah, sons of Adam; you have got to be converted and become as little children, malleable, workable, receive with a meekness the engrafted Word that is able to save us], and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven." (Matthew 18:1-3)

The righteousness is only Pharisaical. You won't even be there. This has been a large problem of the past. This is why the apostasy largely was able to take place. I personally believe; that a lot of the problem was, there was an awful lot of Pharisees, and that was foolishness. Matthew 18:4:

"Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven." (Matthew 18:4)

And it is indeed. Blessed are the meek, the people who are teachable disciples led by the very Spirit of God, for they shall inherit the earth.