Mildness is sometimes misunderstood for weakness.
When one reads the life of Christ as told by the writers of the four Gospels he sees Jesus as a mild-tempered man. But be sure to read the 23rd chapter of Matthew and see Jesus as a forceful denouncer of wickedness.
He was fearless. He had perfect love, and such love throws fear outside. With those who wanted to learn he was amiably gentle, tempered in his feelings and behavior toward all. Because of his mildness Jesus was able to teach people. He told them: “Become my disciples, for I am mild-tempered and lowly in heart, and you will find refreshment for your souls.” (Matt. 11:29)
They put confidence in him. They did not become afraid when Jesus spoke plain truth, because he did it in love. They were ready to listen. Paul knew the value of mildness and said to Timothy: “A slave of the Lord does not need to fight.” Fighting is not the way to help one gain the truth.
Paul went on to say: The Lord’s slave “needs to be tactful toward all, qualified to teach, keeping himself restrained under evil, instructing with mildness those not favourably disposed.” (2 Tim. 2:24, 25) The Word of God properly stated is what makes a person repent, not force.
What a different course the Roman Catholic Hierarchy, which still wields great power in the world today, took during the years of the Inquisition. That false religious body can never live down its history of torture, putting men and women on the rack, tearing their limbs out of their bodies, hanging persons by their thumbs.
These inquisitors professing to be Christians—yes, priests, who arranged for Jews, Moors and “heretics” to suffer excruciating pain—certainly did not have a mild spirit. These religious leaders fought to drive people into the Roman Catholic Church. What have they accomplished by their wars and tortures? A world of peace and unity? No! False religion has been driving people away from God with its wars and crusades.
Christianity will never be brought about by the use of carnal weapons. If anyone accepts the truth it will be because the minister is mild and patient toward those not favourably disposed toward the Bible message.
Jesus used that method, and so did the apostles. True Christians today must use the same method. Mildness is a fruitage of God’s holy spirit, and its use brings lasting results in declaring God’s kingdom.
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