Matthew 11:28-30 “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” Here we have the great invitation of Jesus to each of us that labor and are heavy laden with sin and the burdens of life. When you come to Him, He will give you rest. But you must take His yoke upon you and learn from Him. I would like to especially note that He says that He is gentle and lowly in heart and you will find rest for your soul. The Son of God is gentle and lowly in heart if you come to Him. I understand that He is telling you that He is very approachable. If you humbly come to Him for relief, He will not turn you away or be harsh or severe or difficult to approach.
You probably know someone who is difficult to approach or deal with. Perhaps they are quick to anger or inconsiderate or likely to condemn you. If you make an appeal to them, it is clear that they don’t want to listen to you. As a result, you are likely to avoid them as much as you can. Jesus is not that way with you nor should you be that way with other people. Philippians 4:5 “Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand.”
Consider what the Apostle Paul instructed Titus to teach the Cretans in Titus 3:1-5 “Remind them to be subject to rulers and authorities, to obey, to be ready for every good work, to speak evil of no one, to be peaceable, gentle, showing all humility to all men. For we ourselves were also once foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving various lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful and hating one another. But when the kindness and the love of God our Savior toward man appeared, not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit.” You are to be peaceable, gentle and humble toward others because that is how God has treated you. He has shown you kindness and love and mercy even when you were a sinner.
One of the qualifications of an elder or bishop is that he should be gentle. 1 Timothy 3:2-3 “A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, temperate, sober-minded, of good behavior, hospitable, able to teach; not given to wine, not violent, not greedy for money, but gentle, not quarrelsome, not covetous.” These individuals should be easy to approach. They should deal with the members of their congregation as a nursing mother cherishes her children. That is how the Apostle Paul dealt with the Thessalonians. 1 Thessalonians 2:7-8 “But we were gentle among you, just as a nursing mother cherishes her own children. So, affectionately longing for you, we were well pleased to impart to you not only the gospel of God, but also our own lives, because you had become dear to us.”
Consider these scriptures about gentleness. 2 Timothy 2:24-25 “And a servant of the Lord must not quarrel but be gentle to all, able to teach, patient, in humility correcting those who are in opposition, if God perhaps will grant them repentance, so that they may know the truth.” James 3:17 “But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy.” Ephesians 4:1-3 “I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you to walk worthy of the calling with which you were called, with all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love, endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.” 1 Timothy 6:11 “But you, O man of God, flee these things and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, gentleness.”
Gentleness should be demonstrated in all of your relationships. If you are a father or mother, you should be gentle with your children. Husbands and wives should be gentle with each other. Brothers or sisters in a family should be gentle with each other. Be gentle with your neighbors and co-workers. Be gentle with any opponent that you have. Be gentle with your fellow brother or sister in Christ. You should even demonstrate gentleness with domesticated animals such as farm animals or dogs or cats. Gentleness is one of the characteristics that you should put on as a true follower of Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ and God the Father have been gentle with you. I encourage you to let your gentleness be known to all men (Philippians 4:5).