Receive with Meekness

James 1:21
   Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls.

I Peter 2:1-2
   Wherefore laying aside all malice, and all guile, and hypocrisies, and envies, and all evil speakings,
   As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby:

The word "naughtiness" in James 1:21 and the word "malice" in I Peter 2:1 are the Greek word kakia.  Kakia means evil or malice.  You cannot hold evil in your heart and receive God's Word.

Acts 8:22
   Repent therefore of this thy wickedness, [kakia] and pray God, if perhaps the thought of thine heart may be forgiven thee.

Simon offered Peter and John money to get an understanding of the power of God that these apostles manifested in ministering holy spirit in manifestation to the new believers in Samaria.  The evil intent in his heart was that he would be exalted in the eyes of the people if he had the power in manifestation that he saw the apostles operating.  The Word of God cannot be bought.  In order to receive God's Word you must lay aside all evil intent and receive God's Word with meekness.

The word "guile" in I Peter 2:1 is the Greek word dolos.  Dolos means to bait or trick someone just as a fisherman uses bait to catch a fish.  You cannot hold a desire to bait or trick someone in your heart and receive God's Word.

The word "hypocrisies" in I Peter 2:1 is the Greek word hupokrisis.  Hupokrisis means to play a part as an actor does in a play.  It is to say one thing while you are living or thinking something else in your heart.  You cannot be a hypocrite in your heart and receive God's Word.

Galatians 2:13
   And the other Jews dissembled likewise with him [Peter]; insomuch that Barnabas also was carried away with their dissimulation. [hupokrisis - hypocrisy]

The Judean believers had declared publicly that there was no difference between a born again Judean and a born again Gentile.  All are equal members of the body of Christ.  Yet in practice even Peter separated himself from the Gentiles.  Paul reproved this hypocritical practice.  In order to receive the greatness of God's Word you must lay aside hypocrisy and receive with meekness the pure milk of God's Word.

The word "envies" in I Peter 2:1 is the Greek word phthonos.  Phthonos means to hold ill will or jealousy toward someone.  You cannot hold jealousy in your heart and receive God's Word.

The words "evil speaking" in I Peter 2:1 is the Greek word katalalia.  Katalalia means to speak against someone.  You cannot speak evil against someone and receive God's Word.

Meekness is humility.  It is being "teachable."  If a person thinks he knows something he rarely listens when being taught.  To receive God's Word you must desire the undiluted milk of God's Word the way a newborn baby accepts the milk of his mother.  You must lay aside all evil intents, jealousy, hypocrisy, attempts to bait or trick another, backbiting, etc. and receive the Word in a pure open heart.  The engrafted word is the implanted word.  God plants His Word in our hearts when we are meek.

Consider the following record.  Aaron & Miriam, believers who had received God's Word and were responsible for teaching it to others, began to speak evil of the actions of Moses.  They held envy and jealousy in their hearts and expressed these evil intents in that they said "Hath the Lord indeed spoken only by Moses?  hath he not spoken also by us?"  They sought to bait Moses with their comments.  In contrast Moses was very meek.  Moses listened to God with a pure heart.  He held no evil toward others in his heart.  Look at the way God responded to the meekness of Moses and the malice of Aaron & Miriam:

Numbers 12:1-8
   And Miriam and Aaron spake against Moses because of the Ethiopian woman whom he had married: for he had married an Ethiopian woman.
   And they said, Hath the Lord indeed spoken only by Moses? hath he not spoken also by us?  And the Lord heard it.
   (Now the man Moses was very meek, above all the men which were upon the face of the earth.)
   And the Lord spake suddenly unto Moses, and unto Aaron, and unto Miriam, Come out ye three unto the tabernacle of the congregation.  And they three came out.
   And the Lord came down in the pillar of the cloud, and stood in the door of the tabernacle, and called Aaron and Miriam: and they both came forth.
   And he said, Hear now my words:  If there be a prophet among you, I the Lord will make myself known unto him in a vision, and will speak unto him in a dream.
   My servant Moses is not so, who is faithful in all mine house.
   With him will I speak mouth to mouth, even apparently, and not in dark speeches; and the similitude of the Lord shall he behold:  wherefore then were ye not afraid to speak against my servant Moses?

To receive God's Word we must approach it with meekness.  Meekness is not letting others walk on you.  It is holding no malice, jealousy, evil speaking, baiting, or hypocrisy toward others.  It is having a pure teachable heart.  God has promised that he will teach the meek His Word.

Psalm 25:9
   The meek will he guide in judgment: and the meek will he teach his way.

February, 1999
Michael Cortright