Definition: The quality of being calm, kind, or soft; not severe, rough, strong, or violent.
Synonyms: Affable, mild, tender, kind, placid, docile, tame, meek, submissive, compliant, passive, humble, timid, amenable, accommodating, acquiescent, willing
Antonyms: Cruelty, hardness, harshness, penalty, punishment, revenge, rigor, severity, sternness, pride, vengeance, anger, fighting, argumentative.
Gentleness and/or meekness is a quality of heart we should have when receiving direction from God.
Psalm 25:9 (KJV)
The meek will he guide in judgment: and the meek will he teach his way.
Receive the word with “humility, meekness, gentleness,” Not with anger (James 1:19-21).
They made their hearts like “flint” (KJV - “adamant stone;” ESV - “diamond hard”). When receiving from God, we should have a quality of gentleness, not hard-heartedness.
The fruit of gentleness should guide our hearts in dealing with others.
Galatians 6:1 The spirit of gentleness is how we should approach someone caught up in sin.
2 Timothy 2:23-26 We are not to be quarrelsome with those who oppose us. Rather, the fruit of gentleness should be our guide.
The Apostle Paul was not always gentle before his conversion.
1 Timothy 1:12-13; Acts 8:3; 9:1-2; 22:3-5; 26:9-18 He had an encounter with Jesus, and his life changed.
Paul changed from the inside out. Where he was once “furiously enraged” in persecuting the church, Paul changed to a man with a gentle spirit.
1 Thessalonians 2:5-8 This is how the Apostle Paul was among the churches in Thessalonica - “gentle, as a nursing mother tenderly cares for her own children.”
This is how Jesus is with us. We come to him, drawn by his gentleness towards us.
We should display this fruit of gentleness toward others.