What does it mean to be meek?


#1

What did Jesus mean by

Blessed are the meek:
for they shall inherit the earth.

?

What does it mean to be meek? Is this something we are to be in relation to one another or is Jesus defining his relationship between God and man?

Would it be more like, “Blessed are the gentle” or “Blessed are those who are as meek as the clay”, in other words formed by God?


#2

I’ll be waiting to see answers to this as well!


#3

I think meek in Jesus’ time meant you only used your anger for good. Self-controlled.


#4

My dictionary defines it as “humbly patient or docile, as under provocation from others.”

To give you an example, a friend of mine defends our Catholic faith elsewhere on the internet. Some of the people she interacts with have called her a number of blasphemous names and have not only told her she’s damned to hell but that they want a front row seat so they can enjoy watching her being thrown into the eternal lake of fire.

She has not responded in kind.

It takes a lot of strength to be meek.


#5

Humility in all our relationships and most importantly before God is the key to entering the kingdom- to union with Him.
**“Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. 4 Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. **Matt 18:3-4


#6

Interesting question.

The Catholic Cultures definition of meekness is

The virtue that moderates anger and its disorderly effects. It is a form of temperance that controls every inordinate movement of resentment at another person’s character or behavior.” Source: catholicculture.org/culture/library/dictionary/index.cfm?id=34829

But that doesn’t really say much, so the following may be more helpful?

“Blessed Are the Meek, For They Shall Inherit the Land” 2nd Lenten Sermon of Father Cantalamessa. Link: zenit.org/en/articles/2nd-lenten-sermon-of-father-cantalamessa

A shorter version can be found at: catholicmessage.blogspot.co.uk/2007/03/blessed-are-meek.html


#7

Well - apparently the Greek word used here (prays, pronounced prah-ooce’) means:
Mildness of disposition or Gentleness of spirit (Thayer).

This seems to fit nicely with the other replies here. That it means that it is the humble, those who serve, who will inherit. Not those who are not haughty, proud, pushy, judgmental etc.

Peace
James


#8

3 Now the man Moses was very meek, more than all men that were on the face of the earth.

Numbers 12:3 gives us a model.


#9

Meek in the Bible can mean docile but it also means teachable.

To be meek is to be teachable. Moses was the most teachable man on earth.

-Tim-


#10

Scroll down a bit to Blessed are the Meek.

copiosa.org/virtue/virtue_meekness.htm

Peace,
Ed


#11

Thanks-very edifying.


#12

Haydock links the meekness Beatitude to Jesus’ fulfilment of the law described by David in beautiful Psalm 36 “But the meek shall inherit the land, and shall delight in abundance of peace.” Jesus announces his completion of those promises in the higher land – the kingdom of heaven for those of humble heart and selfless love – the meek. Although not addressed directly in this passage, the meek are not the weak. The meek heart often is the final stage of great strength and courage through trials – ie Moses.

Here is Haydock:

“'Ver. 4. The land of the living, or the kingdom of heaven. The evangelist prefers calling it the land of the living in this place, to shew that the meek, the humble, and the oppressed, who are spoiled of the possession of this earth by the powerful and the proud, shall obtain the inheritance of a better land. (Menochius) “They shall possess the land,” is the reward annexed by our Saviour to meekness, that he might not differ in any point from the old law, so well known to the persons he was addressing. David, in psalm xxxvi, had made the same promise to the meek. If temporal blessings are promised to some of the virtues in the beatitudes, it is that temporal blessings might always accompany the more solid rewards of grace. But spiritual rewards are always the principal, always ranked in the first place, all who practice these virtues are pronounced blessed. (Hom. xv)”


#13

Haydock links the meekness Beatitude to Jesus’ fulfilment of the law described by David in beautiful Psalm 36 “But the meek shall inherit the land, and shall delight in abundance of peace.” Jesus announces his completion of those promises in the higher land – the kingdom of heaven for those of humble heart and selfless love – the meek. Although not addressed directly in this passage, the meek are not the weak. The meek heart often is the final stage of great strength and courage through trials.

Here is Haydock:

“'Ver. 4. The land of the living, or the kingdom of heaven. The evangelist prefers calling it the land of the living in this place, to shew that the meek, the humble, and the oppressed, who are spoiled of the possession of this earth by the powerful and the proud, shall obtain the inheritance of a better land. (Menochius) “They shall possess the land,” is the reward annexed by our Saviour to meekness, that he might not differ in any point from the old law, so well known to the persons he was addressing. David, in psalm xxxvi, had made the same promise to the meek. If temporal blessings are promised to some of the virtues in the beatitudes, it is that temporal blessings might always accompany the more solid rewards of grace. But spiritual rewards are always the principal, always ranked in the first place, all who practice these virtues are pronounced blessed. (Hom. xv)”


#14

Meekness is strength under control.

(Note: “…for they shall inherit the earth”. The implication is that the ones who are **trying **to inherit the earth, by exerting their strength reflexively, will fail to do so.)


#15

Father John Hardon’s Modern Catholic Dictionary:

MEEKNESS. The virtue that moderates anger and its disorderly effects. It is a form of temperance that controls every inordinate movement of resentment at another person’s character or behavior.


#16

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