Prize Fight

Is it possible to be meek and unassailable?

Meekness is a hard concept to understand because it is not a word that is used terribly often in modern society.  The modern definition is akin to calmness and gentleness.  As followers of Christ, we are called to behave meekly in all matters.  Christ did not come to call us to being completely submissive or compliant with the world though, but to challenge it openly.  Now some might say that is a paradox, but I don’t believe it is.

I believe it is completely possible to be meek and strong at the same time.  What strikes me is odd is how much focus is on Christians being meek.  The word “meek” appears four times in the entire Bible (1 Kings 21:27, Psalm 37:11, Zephaniah 3:12, and Matthew 5:5).

David may be our best example from the Bible about being openly meek.  Throughout the Psalms, he shows humility and deference to God, but was David weak?  Was he a pushover?  David routed those that came against him and Israel because he was centered and controlled.  He was gentle, he was humble.

Could meekness be strength under control?  The writer of Proverbs seems to think so.

The wise prevail through great power,
    and those who have knowledge muster their strength.

Proverbs 24:5

This is all well and good because we are called to draw strength from God through faith, but how can we apply this to the world today.  Why does this matter?

We are in a prize fight.  Christ says that the “meek shall inherit the Earth,” but never stated how.  The world, as I have mentioned before is fallen and at war with itself.  The one constant in human affairs since the beginning of recorded history is that war is never far in the past and never far in the future.  How does a people seek to live meekly without appearing weak and ready for conquering or slaughter?

President Theodore Roosevelt may have best summed up this paradox resolution with the philosophy of speaking softly with a big stick.  In order to be gentle, one must be strong first.  Meekness is controlled and disciplined strength.

Being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience.

Colossians 1:11

Strength uncontrolled is rage and destruction.  Humility without strength is an invitation to those with strength to attack you.  Strength and humility in tandem is a powerful combination as it allows you to respond patiently.  Why did Christ direct us to “turn the other cheek?”  Not to offer it up to be hit again, but in order to confront our attacker directly.  To dare the striker to try it again while we are looking, ready, aware, and able to respond.  Why else then would David praise God in this way?

Praise be to the Lord my Rock,
    who trains my hands for war,
    my fingers for battle.

Psalm 144:1

David understood the way strength, meekness, humility and faithfulness all must be intertwined in order to sustain yourself in the world.  In order to achieve the peace and prosperity promised, in order to gain the inheritance promised, strength was needed.  That strength was harnessed though by his faithfulness to God.

Great you might say, but how does that matter today?

Consider the incidents in Benghazi and Cairo on September 11th, 2012.  American soil was attacked.  An Ambassador was killed along with other American citizens.  The President of the United States, together with the other talking heads of his administration, have waffled about this issue.  They have stated that it is our own fault by blaming our freedom of speech and the movie maker of some two-bit piece of junk that has been online for months anyway.

The administration has blamed terrorists within Libya of the attack, but without acknowledging the command and control exhibited by the attackers which allowed them to not only overwhelm the Consulate in Benghazi, but also the former Navy SEAL bodyguards with the Ambassador, and the supposedly secret safe house.  

They have blamed the passion of the mob, but independent reports from inside Libya have said there was no mob in Benghazi prior to the attack.

The lack of coordination here is not the patience I spoke of above, but rather than ineffective understanding of the fundamental problem that the United States, and western civilization as an whole, has with the Islamic world.  We look weak.  The United States has enough firepower and destructive power pent up that we could destroy every square inch of this planet, yet the person who wields that mighty gauntlet is weak because his personal viewpoint of America’s role in the world is not one of strength and preeminence, but one of supplication.  The President has been deferential, has promised more flexibility in the future, and has literally and figuratively bowed before the world.

This invites disaster.

Why have American deaths in Afghanistan in Obama’s not quite four year term totaled 1458 when President Bush’s term ended with 575 American deaths?  Is it because we are winning the peace and the war is “winding down?”

No, it is because the current Commander in Chief does not understand the basic precept of si vis pacem, para bellum (“if you wish for peace, prepare for war”).

David did not shy away from war.  He was humble. He was obedient. He was faithful.  He was a warrior with strength under control.  Our current President has neither strength, nor control, and that lacking is an invitation to the forces arrayed against us in this world to challenge us.

Just look at the news for examples of those challenges.  China and Japan are potentially heading toward a war over uninhabited islands.  A peace deal with the Taliban has been scrapped (the fact this was even considered is a sign of weakness too). Russia is reestablishing it’s influence in it’s former Warsaw Pact states.  The U.S. is running out of Benghazi with it’s tail tucked between it’s legs.  North Korea has increased it’s belligerence and threats of war. Drugs, weapons, invaders, and war has spilled over our southern border more than once during this President’s administration.

Instead of being meek, we have a President who is weak.  The rest of the world knows it too and are taking advantage.

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  1. Intel « freedomsbrushfire

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