04 – Spiritual Composure

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Excerpt 1: Anger is a Choice

  1. Each day this week ask God to make you teachable.
  2. Compare Scripture: Matt 5:5; Eph. 4:29; 2 Timothy 2:24-26; Gal 6:1-2; Psalm 37:1-11; Proverbs 19:11.
  3. Why do we get so angry with people, especially evildoers?
  4. Pastor Jason believes that learning sound biblical theology produces mature thinking and wise behavior. He believes that when people are easily offended and are always angry that it is a sign of spiritual immaturity. Do you agree? Why or why not?
  5. Read and meditate upon 1 Peter 3:9-14.

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Excerpt 2: God Promises Greatness to the Meek

  1. Compare Scripture: Proverbs 15:4, 28; 16:24; 29:11
  2. Quote: “To speak of ‘mere words’ is much like speaking of ‘mere dynamite.'” – Curt John Ducasse (philosopher). Do you agree that even if you say that you are sorry for losing your temper and saying hurtful words, the wounds are not so easily healed?
  3. Finish this sentence: “I need to more consistently practice restraint with my words and/or actions when I’m…”
  4. To have joy in the midst of trials requires a mind fixed on something trials cannot touch. Thomas Manton said, “If a man would lead a happy life, let him but seek a sure object for his trust, and he shall be safe: ‘He shall not be afraid of evil tidings: his heart is fixed, trusting the Lord’ [Psalm 112:7]. He hath laid up his confidence in God, therefore his heart is kept in an equal poise.” (cited in The Golden Treasury of Puritan Quotations, I.D.E Thomas, ed. [Edinburgh: Banner of Truth, 1997], p. 160). What determines the joy in your life – your circumstances, which shift like desert sand, or the Lord Jesus Christ, the rock of salvation (cf. Matt 24-27)?

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Excerpt 3: Is Meekness a Weakness?

  1. Word Study: In the NT meekness (prautēs and adjective praus) refers to an inward attitude, whereas gentleness is expressed rather in outward action. It is part of the fruit of Christ-like character produced only by the Spirit (Gal. 5:23). The meek do not resent adversity because they accept everything as being the effect of God’s wise and loving purpose for them, so that they accept injuries from men also, knowing that these are permitted by God for their ultimate good (cf. 2 Sa. 16:11). (New Bible Dictionary, pg 747).
  2. In Caring Enough to Confront, David Augsberger writes, “Maturity is manifested in learning to be angry (at behaviors) and loving (toward persons) at the same time.”  Pastor Jason agrees and believes that spiritual maturity is evidenced by spiritual poise and spiritual composure. How would you describe meekness?
  3. Compare Scripture: James 3:13,17. What light does James 3:17 shed on the definition of meekness and spiritual composure?

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Excerpt 4: The Real Power of Meekness

  1. Rick Johnson wrote: I have a great friend who is a physician. On the outside he appears to be a very soft-spoken, gentle man. He is a healer, a nurturer. He is slight of build, polite, and physically unimposing. At first glance he would not strike one as particularly masculine. You would never expect him to be a dynamic leader of his family and community. Yet he leads his family with passion, conviction, and love. He and his wife have raised a family of gifted, emotionally healthy children who have benefited greatly by his steady guidance and firm resolution. His enthusiasm toward life is contagious. He mentors medical students and works with and supports a variety of nonprofits. He is filled with a steel-hard character that allowed him to overcome setbacks and disappointments that would have dropped a lesser man to his knees. Yet he faces them with grace, dignity, and a positive attitude of perseverance and faith that inspires me to be stronger myself. Were I to judge him by outward appearances, I would likely have missed the experience of learning a great lesson about masculinity: It is about what’s inside a man—not necessarily about how he looks or acts, poses and posture, or presents himself—that counts. (The Power of a Man, Revell, 2009) Do you know anyone that you consider a good example of meekness?
  2. Compare Scripture: Exodus 3:1-12; 1 Samuel 16:7; 2Cor.10:1; Matthew 11:29; 21:5
  3. Why was Moses considered meek?  Was he always meek?
  4. God ultimately reduced Pharaoh to nothing because he was unwilling to submit himself to divine authority. God is not opposed to greatness. God is opposed to pride. What you never want to do in your desire to be great is to try to steal or usurp God’s glory. That is a crucial principle. Take a moment to think about that.
  5. Billy Graham said, “True greatness is not measured by the headlines a person commands or the wealth he or she accumulates. The inner character of a person—the undergirding moral and spiritual values and commitments—is the true measure of lasting greatness.” Can you name men and women in the Bible and in church history who achieved greatness while practicing meekness?
  6. What does each of these passages of Scripture teach us about meekness? James 1:19-21; 1 Peter 3:4-6, 7, 8-11, 15
  7. How can you be more meek and godly in your home, church, or society?
  8. Prayer: Don’t just ask God to take away fretfulness in your life; ask for meekness.