Gentleness is a strength. It is highly desirable, and Jesus shows us the way by His own gentleness. Jesus challenges me to gentle, thoughtful, caring and compassionate.
But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, reasonable, full of mercy and good fruits, unwavering, without hypocrisy. | James 3:17
Gentleness is a mark and a part of the character of a follower of Jesus. We know from Galatians 5:22 that gentleness is a fruit of the Holy Spirit. How do others know I am following Jesus? They see my gentleness. Jesus himself, in His Manifesto (aka the Sermon on the Mount) , said “Happy are those who are gentle (meek) for they will inherit the earth.”
The Greek word is πραΰτης praëtēs, prah-oo´-tace meaning mildness, humility or meekness. Jesus himself said we would be happy if we are gentle (meek). The benefit is we will inherit the earth.
The Apostle Paul reminds us that if since we have been chosen by God, we will show compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. In each of these passages, gentleness is linked to other critical characteristics of the life of a Disciple.
Gentleness doesn’t come to us without these other attributes. It doesn’t and can’t stand on its own. I can’t be gentle without love and compassion. It takes great humility to be gentle. Patience is critical to gentleness.
Here are some good words from the scripture.
- Matthew 5:5 — “Blessed are the gentle, for they shall inherit the earth.”
- 1 Peter 3:1–4 — In the same way, you wives, be submissive to your own husbands so that even if any of them are disobedient to the word, they may be won without a word by the behavior of their wives, as they observe your chaste and respectful behavior. Your adornment must not be merely external—braiding the hair, and wearing gold jewelry, or putting on dresses; but let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the imperishable quality of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is precious in the sight of God.
- Proverbs 15:1 — A gentle answer turns away wrath, But a harsh word stirs up anger.
- James 3:17 — But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, reasonable, full of mercy and good fruits, unwavering, without hypocrisy.
- Proverbs 25:15 — By forbearance a ruler may be persuaded, And a soft tongue breaks the bone.