Remix: Student Devotionals

Fruit of the Spirit Pt. 3 - Week 1, Day 2

Day 2

The Gentleness of Jesus

When you look at the life of Jesus, He was so gentle to others when He didn't have to be. Jesus was power under control. For example, in John 4, Jesus meets a woman who is drawing water at a well. He asks her for a drink of water.

Jesus was a Jewish man talking to a Samaritan woman. Now, this is not something that happened in this time period. First of all, Jewish men didn't speak to women. It broke every social code possible. Secondly, she is a Samaritan woman. Jews and Samaritans hated each other, but Jesus had a greater purpose in mind. Here is how the conversation went.

Jesus said to her, "Will you give me a drink?" (His disciples had gone into the town to buy food.) The Samaritan woman said to him, "You are a Jew, and I am a Samaritan woman. How can you ask me for a drink?" (For Jews do not associate with Samaritans.)

Translation: Are you talking to me? Who do you think you are that you would be talking to me?

Jesus answered her, "If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him, and he would have given you living water." "Sir," the woman said, "you have nothing to draw with, and the well is deep. So where can you get this living water?”

Translation: What are you talking about? You don't even have a bucket. Do you think you are better than me?

Are you greater than our father Jacob, who gave us the well and drank from it himself, as also did his sons and his flocks and herds?" So she is giving it to Jesus pretty good.

Jesus gently answers her, "Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life." The woman said to him, "Sir, give me this water so that I won't get thirsty and have to keep coming here to draw water." Jesus gets to the point. He told her, "Go, call your husband and come back."

"I have no husband," she replied. Jesus said to her, "You are right when you say you have no husband. The fact is, you have had five husbands, and the man you now have is not your husband. What you have just said is quite true." John 4:7-18 (NIV)

What do you bet there was a long pause after Jesus said that. I bet she started to think about her life. Five broken marriages, living with a man who doesn't love her enough to make her his wife. I bet she thinks about who this guy is, what he wants, and how he knows so much about me.

I love that Jesus was gentle with her when He didn't have to be. Jesus could have looked at her and said, "Who do you think you are? You're a five-time loser in love. The man you with doesn't even want you." But Jesus doesn't condemn her. Instead, He loves her and tells her the day she has been waiting her whole life for is finally here. The Messiah has come not to condemn her but to set her free.

Jesus would come across people who were in trouble, and they knew what they deserved. They expected condemnation. They expected the wrath of God. They knew it was coming, and yet Jesus would surprise them with gentleness.

Jesus would look at them and say, "I love you enough to tell you the truth in love. God has a better plan for your life than this. Repent. Turn away from that sin and turn your life over to God. There is nothing in Me that wants to slam you. I have come to help you. I have come to forgive you. I have come to die in your place."

John 3:17 says, "For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him."

God is bent on the idea that we don't get what we deserve. Aren't you glad?

Let me ask you a question? If the Bible were still being written today, what would the chapter of your life look like? Mine would be full of embarrassment and sin. Mine would be a chapter I wouldn't want anyone to read.

I don't know if we fully understand this or not, but we are all sinners. We are a broken people, broken apart by foolish choices, and as a result, we are damaged. There is an old preschool nursery rhyme that goes like this.

Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall. Humpty Dumpty had a great fall. All the king's horses and all the king's men couldn't put Humpty together again.

Humpty Dumpty was written to be a parable about spiritual and moral failure. The point: We are all broken and need restoration, so let's be gentle to each other. Let's remember how gentle God has been with us, and let's be the same way to others. Let's allow the gentleness of God to flow through us so people will see the difference that Jesus has made in us in how we respond to others.

"But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect," 1 Peter 3:15 (NIV)

The world has a hard time listening to what Jesus has to say when the gentleness of God isn't evident in His children.

If you are reading this today and you feel like Humpty Dumpty. I understand how that feels when all kings' horses and all the king's men can't seem to put you back together again. The attempts to fix what is broken inside of us. The king's men might not be able to fix you, but I know the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords can. Would you like to ask Jesus to come into your life to put the pieces of your life back together again? Why not talk to your small group leader or student pastor as soon as possible.

Time Out:

Today I want you to thank God for how gentle He has been to you. Despite our inconsistencies, sins, and promises that we did not keep, God did not slam us, but He wants to forgive us and help us be the people He has created us to be. Thank Him today for that, and the next time you want to slam someone else, remember God has never slammed you. Be gentle. Strength under His control.

A gentle answer deflects anger, but harsh words make tempers flare. Proverbs 15:1