Welcome back! This is week three of our Online Study of Putting on a Gentle & Quiet Spirit by Elizabeth George. I hope you are enjoying this study as much as I am. I’m learning so much from the Book of 1 Peter! It is a rich study full of life application, and it’s only going to get better as we keep going.
So … let’s get started.
I want to share a resource with you. Our current WOW Weekly Moment series is based on 1 Peter, as well. It’s called Precious in His sight. The devotions may be of interest to you and give further insight into our online study. Click on the links below to access the devotions.
- Precious In His Sight – Genuine Faith (1 Peter 1:1-12)
- Precious In His Sight – God’s Word (1 Peter 1:13-25)
Ok, let’s move on into this week’s study. We’ll follow our same format:
- Pray (Ask God to open your heart and mind so you can understand His Word)
- Read (Re-familiarize yourself with the passage from the previous week)
- Listen (Receive some thoughts and further insights about the lessons studied)
- Respond (Apply spiritual truth to your life)
- Thank God for revealing Truth to you
BTW – I assigned lessons 5-7 last week for homework, however, I decided to only teach 5-6 this week which means you are ahead if you completed lesson 7. We’ll get to that next week! 🙂
Precious Father, thank You for revealing truth to me. I love Your Word, and I long to have greater understanding from it. Meet me right hear, Father, and show me Truth this week. Show me great and mighty things that I do not know. (Jeremiah 33:3)
In lessons 5-6 Elizabeth pointed out two attitudes of the heart and mind that we must have in order to cultivate a Gentle & Quiet Spirit:
- 1 Peter 1:17-21 – An Attitude of reverence and awe for Jesus
- 1 Peter 1:22-25 – An attitude of genuine love for others
Thought to Ponder … How can a genuine love and reverence for Jesus and the salvation He provided cause you to have a genuine love for others?
I want to remind you of the definitions Elizabeth George gave us in lesson one for the words gentle & quiet.
Gentle (or meek) – has to do with the condition of the mind and heart, and is a characteristic of one who does not create disturbances. It has to do with affections and feelings.
Quiet – has to do with a tranquility arising from within, causing no disturbance to others, and it means bearing with tranquility the disturbances caused by others. Quiet applies to our words, countenance, and actions.
In other words, because I have a gentle spirit I am characterized as someone whose feelings are so under control that I don’t create issues or disturbances.
On the other hand my quiet spirit is recognized as my responses (words, actions) remain tranquil when others cause disturbances around me.
I wanted to remind you of that because the attitudes of the heart and mind that we are looking at this week can help us cultivate the responses and feelings necessary to portray that gentle and quiet spirit.
Now, on to 1 Peter 1:17-25 … At the end of the passage last week we read these words, “Be holy, for I am holy.” God calls us to be set apart. We are to be holy in our conduct (the way we act), we are to be holy in our thoughts and live disciplined lives. We are to obey God’s Word and not be driven by our passions or use our ignorance as an excuse.
Then verse 17 says, “And if you call on him as Father who judges impartially according to each one’s deeds, conduct yourselves with fear …”
We are to conduct ourselves with fear because …
#1 God is an impartial judge (verse 17)
#2 We were redeemed by the precious blood of Jesus (verse 19)
God deserves our reverence and awe because of who He is. Verse 17 gives us an attribute of God. What is it?
God is an Impartial Judge. He doesn’t show favoritism or prejudice. He isn’t concerned with what I do or don’t do, my skin color, gender, education, or resume. He simply desires my obedience, my holiness, my respect, and my heart of love. (See Colossians 3:25, Deuteronomy 10:17, 2 Chronicles 19:7)
In verse 18 we see that Jesus is our redeemer, and in verse 19 we see that Jesus is perfect (He was the spotless lamb). Verse 21 alludes to the power of God to raise Jesus from the dead.
So what does this have to do with having a quiet and gentle spirit?
God desires change in our lives. He doesn’t want us to remain the same, have the same reactions and over reactions, the same argumentative spirits, the same emotional outbursts, the same meltdowns. He wants us to operate in our daily life with the knowledge of who He is and who His Son is. Jesus made a tremendous sacrifice for you and me, and this sacrifice should impact my life and yours and cause us to be more like Him.
Your attitude of reverence and awe of God is the catalyst that ignites the awareness of God’s presence in your life at all times and in all situations. It is this awareness of God’s presence that compels a woman to cultivate and display a quiet and gentle spirit. This comes not from our own doing but from the power of Jesus, through the Holy Spirit, working in our lives. Because of God’s great love for us, and Jesus’ precious blood, we are redeemed. Does that make you treasure your salvation? Does it cause you to desire holiness in your life? Does it make you want to change and treat others differently?
Lesson six leads us further into that attitude of the heart. We must each ask: Do I have a genuine love for others?
Verses 22 reminds us that we have just been given Truth. And what does Truth do in our lives? If we allow it to, it will purify our hearts and make us live in obedience to Christ.
Peter gives us three ways we are to love one another:
- Sincerely – We should love genuinely, authentically, not pretending, free from grudges.
- Fervently – We should love intensely, without limits.
- With a pure heart – We should love with all our heart.
Do you understand how that relates to having a gentle and quiet spirit?
Elizabeth George says it this way …
… This kind of love (sincere, fervent, whole-hearted love) will cost us greatly and will require much effort … and may cause us much suffering. And we’ll have to put on God’s gentle and quiet spirit to endure any ill treatment and still give love in return. Remember that a gentle spirit does not cause disturbances, and a quiet spirit does not react ot the disturbances caused by others. Instead, we love – earnestly, genuinely, and whole-heartedly – even those who cause us to suffer.
Did you realize that loving others reveals how much we truly love God?
But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. – Romans 5:8
That tells me that even when Jesus was wronged and being disturbed by my sin and yours, He put on a gentle and quiet spirit and loved me even then … so much that He died for me. So when I’m showing genuine love to someone who has caused or is causing me suffering, I am really loving God because I am being like Him.
Respond: (Please post your comments to these questions below.)
- Do you treasure your salvation?
- Do you desire holiness in your life?
- Does your desire for holiness and the knowledge of Jesus’ sacrifice for you make you want to change and treat others differently?
- How have you responded to Jesus’ example of genuine love?
- Has God given you any opportunity these past few weeks to practice Putting On a Gentle & Quiet Spirit?
Lessons 7- 10 (pp.44-64)
Thank God for His nature, for the precious blood of Jesus, for your salvation, and for His love for you while you were yet a sinner. Ask Him to help you love others with a genuine and fervent love.
Have a blessed week!