Titus 3:1-2 Remind the people to be subject to rulers and authorities, to be obedient, to be ready to do whatever is good, 2 to slander no one, to be peaceable and considerate, and always to be gentle toward everyone.
Here is a moment of honesty…When it comes to doing what is right it is really hard for me when God puts inclusive words in the Bible. The last part of Titus 3:2 is a double whammy because it throws two inclusive words at us. The verse tells us that we are to be gentle, we will talk more about gentleness in a bit, but first lets look at the double whammy. We are told to be gentle ALWAYS and towards EVERYONE! Wow! That is difficult! Always is pretty self explanatory in that there is never a time that we shouldn’t be gentle, ever! Paul makes sure we don’t miss how inclusive our gentleness is supposed to be by adding that we are to be gentle to everyone. Again that is pretty self explanatory, there is no one that we are not to be gentle with!
Knowing that we are to be gentle to everyone all the time we need to make sure we understand what being gentle really means. Gentleness is defined as the following: meekness; mild of temper; my favorite though is, strength under control. Strength under control, that is a pretty powerful way to describe gentleness. When I think about a visual of that one of the most powerful animals in the world comes to mind, an elephant. You look at an elephant and you just think power. They can do so many things to prove their strength. What is amazing to me is the power of their trunk. It has 8 major muscles but is made up of over 40,000 muscles. One place I read said they can lift 700,000 pounds with their trunk. They can rip trees out of the ground using their trunks. That is POWER! A couple other interesting things stand out to me about the trunk, elephants can smell better than bloodhounds and can pick up a single blade of grass. That is CONTROL!
As I started to think of an example from the Bible of strength under control David came to mind. In 1 Samuel we see Saul trying to have David killed. Saul had tried to kill David already by throwing a spear at him. He was doing everything he could to get rid of David. At one point David is hiding in a cave with some of his men. Who would happen to come along, Saul. He needed a restroom break and so he went into the cave to take care of business. David’s men tried to take advantage of this opportunity. The told him, “Today the Lord is telling you, ‘I will certainly put your enemy into your power, to do with as you wish.’” David didn’t listen to them though. Scripture tells us, David restrained his men and did not let them kill Saul. David did what was right to someone that was really hard to treat right at a time that made it really hard to do what is right. David showed real gentleness.
There are going to be times when people hurt us, say things about us, treat us in a way that isn’t right. We have to be gentle with them. Even if we have the ability/power to retaliate whether physically or in any other way we should be gentle and keep the power we have under control. There are some people that make doing this really hard but God tells us to be this way with everyone! We have to know that scripture tells us that the Lord will deal with them and we are called to leave it up to Him.
Treating people gentle who have wronged us can be such a powerful testimony for them to see. It can show them we aren’t like everyone else, that we are loving and compassionate. When we show gentleness we are living out a fruit of the Spirit and being a witness of who Jesus is and what he did for us! He had the strength to remove Himself from the cross but he showed strength under control by remaining on the cross for us so that we can be saved and come into a relationship with Him.
Be gentle today so you can live the way God has called us to live and so He can be glorified!