I remember when I was a child and a lamp got broken. My mom was over at someone’s house, the grocery store or somewhere else, but came back home and as soon as she did, she saw the lamp. Well, I had been outside playing so that left my brother. She asked who broke it. I said, not me and that was all. My brother started saying that I had done it, and was going on and on about how I had broken it. Then, she asked me, “Did you break it?” I said no. Then, she asked my brother, who denied vehemently that it was he who had done it. He kept going on, and on. It wasn’t him. Blaming me, then the dogs, then me again. Well, she asked me again, and again I said no and offered nothing further, there was no more to add. Then she asked him again, and, same as before, he tried to blame, me, the dogs, then started to challenge our mother, asking how could she even think he would have been the one to break it. That was when she said, “I know you are the one that broke it. Why didn’t you just tell the truth? You wouldn’t have gotten in as much trouble, but now you broke the lamp and lied about it.” He started to protest again, then, finally confessed. He said he was afraid he would be in trouble so that was why he lied about it. Then he asked how she could tell it was him. She quoted that line, then said, normally, people that are innocent don’t go on and on about their innocence. If an innocent person is accused, they answer the question and say no more, because they have nothing further to add. That they can’t offer more information because they have no more to add and the innocent usually realize the truth will come out so they don’t continue to claim innocence over and over like he was doing and that innocent people normally did not feel the need to carry on so much. And, that is true.
Think about how some people are arrested, they go on, and on at press conferences and other interviews proclaiming innocence. While the innocent, wrongly arrested, normally believe that the real truth will come out and don’t go to such extremes. Oh, innocent people will say they are innocent, but not as loudly as the guilty claim false innocence. My brother is a Corrections Officer (prison guard) and he says, like I have heard said before, that the prison is full of “innocent” people. They and their lawyers constantly submit appeals, try to generate publicity, look for loopholes, etc to get the conviction set aside. Now, there are times that a person is wrongly convicted, but that is not as often as the prisoners will claim.
Thinking about how some people boast, brag, expand on themselves and others are very quiet, unassuming makes me think about how some of the young enlisted soldiers talk tough when stateside or while on camp while deployed, talking about all they are going to do when they get into a gunfight while the true warriors just go on about their business, prepare their equipment, mentally prepare for possible conflict and help others get ready, maybe joke with the rest of the guys or talk about anything but what is going to happen, what they are going to do. They don’t boast, they just do their jobs. Usually, they are the ones that are truly brave and I am honored to have served with men like that. They don’t have to tell anyone, those that can see know. They have nothing to prove to anyone but themselves.
Honest, genuine people, those that are not putting on an act, don’t have to be aggressive in telling others they are honest or innocent, they don’t have to constantly remind people they are righteous, kind, care about others or constantly seek to be the center of attention. They are meek, not boastful. They don’t fear scrutiny, they don’t challenge false attacks on their character because they know the truth. They don’t get extremely defensive at any perceived slight.
I don’t know if people remember John McEnroe. He was a tennis player, I think in the 80’s that would cry foul any time he there was an opportunity. If he missed a ball, he would scream at the judge, throw a tantrum, saw the ball was out and if he hit one to his opponent and it was called out, he would scream, saw it was in, sometimes threw his racket. He simply would not accept an honest call. He was always right, always the one that was being mistreated by anyone that said anything he might be able to consider a question of his playing.
Oh, I understand a lot about what is called the psychopathology of those kind of people, the things they think and how they respond to various things. The need to be the center of attention, the need to have any and every little thing acknowledged, the quickness to take offense at any small thing. But are so quick to find fault with others, try to question
But, the Lord has things to say about they that are so aggressive in their protesting innocence, so boastful, so easily offended without good cause. He also has a lot to say about the meek, those who lift up others, who accept scrutiny and if something fault is found, correct it.
1 And straightway in the morning the chief priests held a consultation with the elders and scribes and the whole council, and bound Jesus, and carried him away, and delivered him to Pilate.
2 And Pilate asked him, Art thou the King of the Jews? And he answering said unto him, Thou sayest it.
3 And the chief priests accused him of many things: but he answered nothing.
4 And Pilate asked him again, saying, Answerest thou nothing? behold how many things they witness against thee.
5 But Jesus yet answered nothing; so that Pilate marvelled.
Jesus did not respond to false allegations. Even though He knew He was innocent, He did not start arguing about it. Part of the reason is that He knew that no matter what He said, the Pharisees had already decided in their minds that He was guilty, honestly, they knew He was not guilty, but saw Him as a threat to themselves so they wanted Him executed. Christ also knew it was God’s plan and He followed God’s will and sacrificed Himself for us.
1 This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.
2 For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,
3 Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good,
4 Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;
5 Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.
2 Timothy 3:1-5
God does not want us boastful or full of self. He wants us to be meek.
The meek shall eat and be satisfied: they shall praise the LORD that seek him: your heart shall live for ever. Psalms 22:26
The meek will he guide in judgment: and the meek will he teach his way. Psalms 25:9
But the meek shall inherit the earth; and shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace. Psalms 27:11
Jesus spoke of meekness as well.
Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth. Matthew 5:5
Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. Matthew 11:29
God does not want us to cry foul at the top of our voice at any possible slight. He doesn’t want us falsely accused, but He also wants us to see that protesting false allegations has no value and being more aggressive in arguing innocence actually makes one seem more guilty. Christ knows who we really are, and that when we protest so loudly, to so many, we know we are guilty. But, those who innocent are willing to let the truth speak are meek. They know that God knows them, knows their innocence.