Gentleness / Meekness: New Testament List

Our world values pride, assertiveness, and selfishness; and even views those who are gentle and meek as wimps who do not stand up for their rights. A wimp is not necessarily an individual whose heart has been softened toward others by the Spirit. Some passive individuals use meekness and gentleness as a means of self-preservation. The only true gentleness anyone will experience comes from the Lord’s Spirit living within and changing our heart.

There are three different sets of words for gentleness used in the New Testament. I’ve included each in the list. The word Paul used in the fruit of the Spirit list is the one that is translated as meek or meekness in the New Testament, as in the Beatitudes. The words go hand in hand, and on two occasions Paul used two of them together in the same verse.

Gentleness combines a tender way of interacting with others with an inner attitude of not insisting on or expecting our own selfish way.

Gentleness (prautes) This is the word Paul uses in the Fruit of the Spirit list. It is also translated meekness.

1 Corinthians 4:21

2 Corinthians 10:1

Galatians 5:23

Galatians 6:1

Gentle (praus) This is the root noun and is also translated mild, soft, meek, or tame.

Matthew 5:5

Matthew 11:29


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