Easy to Be Entreated

By John Thiel, mp3, pdf

Scripture reading: James 3:17 But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, [and] easy to be entreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy.

Jesus said:

John 17:3 …this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.

The Knowledge of God

It is the quest of each one of us to have eternal life. And the words of Jesus give us direction. He says, If you want eternal life, this is life eternal – to know God, and to know Jesus Christ whom He has sent. To know Him. We want now to get to know Him more closely than we have known Him so far, that thus each one of us may come nearer to eternal life; because we want eternal life, and it is found only in the knowledge of God. How much do we know of Him, how much more do we need to know, and how much closer do we need to come to eternal life? The knowledge of God can be found through the revelation of Him in His word. God is here identified:

1 John 4:16 And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him.

According to these words, we have met God; God has been placed before us as an embodiment of love. God is love. And as we come face to face with that declaration we want to know what love is. We know that the word love has many different connotations to the human mind. The word love here comes from the word agape, and there are also two other terms: eros and philia. God is agape, and He is the embodiment of that. So we need to study agape, this love, looking carefully into the various components that this love is revealed as in the Scriptures. And where do we find that but in the words of 1 Corinthians 13? There we will see the components of God, because God is agape; God is love. This is God in detail:

1 Corinthians 13:4 [Love] suffereth long,

What does that mean? If God is love, then God suffereth long.

1 Corinthians 13:4 …[and] is kind; [love] envieth not; [love] vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,

We are here reading God. We are getting to know Him.

1 Corinthians 13:5 Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; 6 Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; 7 Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. 8 [Love] never faileth:

These are the components of the character of God. And it is so easy to miss the important impact of these characteristics of God. The component that I wish to focus on during this study is that of verse 5: seeketh not her own; in connection with the words of verses 7 and 4: beareth all things, endureth all things, suffereth long. These are all terms that have a similar experimental reality about them. To seek not your own means that you will bear all things about others, endure all things, and suffer long.

The Wisdom from Above

Let us consider and think what ramifications are contained in a characteristic of someone who seeks not his own. God does not seek His own. This statement “seeketh not her own” is a variation of the followings words in James.

James 3:17 But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, [and] easy to be entreated,

Not to seek your own is a variation of being easy to be entreated. Someone who is not seeking his own will and way can be easily entreated to follow another person’s will and way. Both are closely allied together in meaning.

God is love; He is the embodiment of love. And the wisdom that is part of this is an embodiment, a person. This personification of love and wisdom is expressed in the following words. If wisdom was just a dismembered thought pattern, it could not cry. But we read:

Proverbs 8:1 Doth not wisdom cry? and understanding put forth her voice?

This is a personification. Someone is crying and putting forth his voice. It is wisdom. And what is he crying?

Proverbs 8:4 Unto you, O men, I call; and my voice [is] to the sons of man.

Wisdom is here personified with a voice, a calling power.

Proverbs 8:6 Hear; for I will speak of excellent things; and the opening of my lips [shall be] right things.

Does wisdom have lips? It is obvious here and must be clearly understood that wisdom is connected to a person who has lips, who cries out, and who has a voice.

Proverbs 8:7 For my mouth shall speak truth; and wickedness [is] an abomination to my lips. 8 All the words of my mouth [are] in righteousness; [there is] nothing froward or perverse in them.

This is a very clear personification. And this personification of wisdom now speaks in his connection with the Lord:

Proverbs 8:22 The LORD possessed me in the beginning of his way, before his works of old. 23 I was set up from everlasting, from the beginning, or ever the earth was. … 29 When he gave to the sea his decree, that the waters should not pass his commandment: when he appointed the foundations of the earth: 30 Then I was by him, [as] one brought up [with him]: and I was daily [his] delight, rejoicing always before him;

Here we see that God is love and God is also wisdom. He is speaking here. But which one of the Godhead is here speaking? Wisdom says, The Lord possessed Me in the beginning of His way; I was by Him, as one brought up with Him. Wisdom was brought up together with God, the Lord; so here is something that puzzles the mind. As you read this, you think, What is this speaking about?

And the Son of God declares concerning Himself: “The Lord possessed Me in the beginning of His way, before His works of old. I was set up from everlasting. . . . When He appointed the foundations of the earth: then I was by Him, as one brought up with Him: and I was daily His delight, rejoicing always before Him.” Proverbs 8:22-30. {PP 34.1}

So who is wisdom? The Son of God. This is the Son of God, the wisdom that came down from heaven. And what is He? He is wisdom. Remember, we are coming to know God and Jesus; we are coming to know love and wisdom. And what is this wisdom that comes from above? Easy to be entreated. Love seeketh not her own; wisdom is easy to be entreated. Ponder this. Ponder this in action. This is a marvellous revelation from the simple reading of the word. It opened up before me such a vast field of appreciation, and what Jesus said is so important – we will get to know God and Jesus Christ and have eternal life because of it.

God is Easily Entreated

God and His way is perfect. It doesn’t need to be changed. God’s way needs no alteration. He doesn’t need to be entreated to change His mind. His way is perfect. But here we read from God’s word that He is easily entreated to change for the sake of the person who is entreating Him. Here Ezekiel is the prophet of God, and the elders of Israel come to him.

Ezekiel 14:1 Then came certain of the elders of Israel unto me, and sat before me.

What did they come there for? They came to talk with him, to entreat him.

Ezekiel 14:2 And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, 3 Son of man, these men have set up their idols in their heart, and put the stumblingblock of their iniquity before their face: should I be inquired of at all by them? 4 Therefore speak unto them, and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Every man of the house of Israel that setteth up his idols in his heart, and putteth the stumblingblock of his iniquity before his face, and cometh to the prophet; I the LORD will answer him that cometh according to the multitude of his idols;

He says, “People who come to Me with an idol in their heart, and entreat Me to speak in harmony with their idol, I will speak like that to them. I am easily entreated.” You have many occasions in the history of the church where God has done just that. Israel wanted to have a king, and God was entreated of them. We want a king, they said, like the other nations. So God says, Fine, I am easy to be entreated; you can have a king.

The Lord had, through His prophets, foretold that Israel would be governed by a king; but it does not follow that this form of government was best for them or according to His will. He permitted the people to follow their own choice, because they refused to be guided by His counsel. Hosea declares that God gave them a king in His anger. Hosea 13:11. {PP 605.3}

And remember, God’s character of anger is different to what we know. Jesus demonstrated it when, as written in Mark, he looked upon those about Him with anger, being grieved. God was grieved at heart that Israel wanted a king; but because He is the wisdom that seeketh not her own, the wisdom that is love and that is easily entreated, in His grief He gave them what they wanted.

When men choose to have their own way, without seeking counsel from God, or in opposition to His revealed will, He often grants their desires, in order that, through the bitter experience that follows, they may be led to realize their folly and to repent of their sin. {Ibid.}

He is easily entreated. This happened to the Hebrews in the wilderness. What did they entreat God for? They believed not in God, though he

Psalm 78:24 …had rained down manna upon them to eat, and had given them of the corn of heaven. 25 Man did eat angels’ food: he sent them meat to the full. 26 He caused an east wind to blow in the heaven: and by his power he brought in the south wind. 27 He rained flesh also upon them as dust, and feathered fowls like as the sand of the sea: 28 And he let [it] fall in the midst of their camp, round about their habitations. 29 So they did eat, and were well filled: for he gave them their own desire;

They were fed up with the manna. We are craving for the flesh pots of Egypt; give us flesh! And God’s nature is wisdom, easy to be entreated; so what did He do? He sent them plenty.

Those who desire to follow a course which pleases their fancy are in danger of being left to follow their own inclinations, supposing them to be the leadings of God’s Spirit. {3T 73.2}

Because they have been asking God with that idol of fancy in their heart, and God will give it to them. So now they suppose that this is the leading of God’s Spirit.

The duty of some is indicated sufficiently clear by circumstances and facts; but, through the solicitations of friends, in harmony with their own inclinations, they swerve from the path of duty and pass over the clear evidences in the case; {Ibid.}

The evidence is plain, but it’s uncomfortable; they don’t want that.

…then, with apparent conscientiousness, they pray long and earnestly for light. {Ibid.}

The light is already there, but they’re asking for more light.

They have earnest feeling in the matter, and they interpret this to be the Spirit of God. But they are deceived. This course grieves the Spirit of God. {Ibid.}

Here it is: grief. He gave them a king in His anger, in His grief. It grieves Him that people want this against the plain light that He is giving. It grieves the Spirit of God.

They had light and in the very reason of things should have understood their duty; but a few pleasing inducements balance their minds in the wrong direction, and they urge these before the Lord and press their case, {Ibid.}

When God is being pressed and prayed to with intensity, “Lord, please, we want this; we need You, we need this and that;” what does He do?

…and the Lord allows them to have their own way. They have so strong an inclination to follow their own course that He permits them to do so and to suffer the results. These imagine that they have a wonderful experience. {Ibid.}

What a situation we find ourselves in with the attitude that God has. If He is entreated and firmly pressed to give them what they want, His nature, His wisdom, is that He is easily entreated; and He permits them to do what they want to do and suffer the results. He gives them what they want because He is easily entreated. He knows better, but that’s what they want, so He is easily entreated. And He permits them to have it and to suffer the results.

According to Their Idols

Ezekiel 14:4 … I the LORD will answer him that cometh according to the multitude of his idols; 5 That I may take the house of Israel in their own heart, because they are all estranged from me through their idols.

The story of them wanting a king is a perfect illustration. So much did they want a king to be like other nations that God said, Alright, Samuel, they are not talking against you, they are talking against Me; give them a king. And God led the search for a king; God brought before them the choice He made for a king, according to their will. They wanted a king to go out and fight wars for them, so God said, Alright then, I will bless you. He is easily entreated. I will send you out with a king to fight your enemies. But what was His original plan? They were not to fight; He was to do their fighting for them. But can you see how His nature comes forth? He is easy to be entreated. He says, I am going to let them have what they want so badly so I can take them in their own heart.

When men choose to have their own way, without seeking counsel from God, or in opposition to His revealed will, He often grants their desires, in order that, through the bitter experience that follows, they may be led to realize their folly and to repent of their sin. Human pride and wisdom will prove a dangerous guide. That which the heart desires contrary to the will of God will in the end be found a curse rather than a blessing. {PP 605.3}

At the time they think they are having a wonderful time; but at the end it will be a curse rather than a blessing. Are you getting to know God? This is God. Through their own course of their own idols and of their own desires that are contrary to God’s will for them, they are brought to suffer affliction, so that they would then come to the realisation that they have made serious mistakes. God says, Alright, I am leading you to this so that you will come to the point of recognising that and that then you will come to repentance. But even in that repentance, God in His amazing wisdom, seeking not His own, reveals something profound. Marvel with me. Where did their affliction come from? In the fact that God gave them want they wanted. Now they became afflicted; but

Isaiah 63:9 In all their affliction he was afflicted, and the angel of his presence saved them: in his love and in his pity he redeemed them; and he bare them, and carried them all the days of old.

This is God

Love beareth long, suffereth long, endureth everything. This is love. This is God. So that what man has done to himself by insisting and entreating God, and God saying, Alright then, here it is; now as we suffer the consequences, He comes close to us in our affliction, and says, I am right here, suffering with you after you have done the opposite to what I wanted you to do. I am suffering with you. Was that not the case of Jesus, the personification of wisdom? He came to this world, and He suffered with the human race in their afflictions, in every sense of the word, which were the consequences of their own wrong doing. What a God. This is life eternal, that you might know God. You see the connection now. God is love.

John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son,

What did He give Him to? He didn’t spare Him. He spared not His own Son; He gave Him. He didn’t spare Him; He suffered long in His Son suffering on this earth;

Philippians 2:6 Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: 7 But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: 8 And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.

What was the cross all about? Jesus cried, My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me? Forsaken of God because we are forsaken of God because of our sins. In all of our afflictions He was afflicted. Here we see something about God the Father and the Son. He was in the form of God, He was equal with God; but love seeketh not her own. He didn’t seek; He didn’t regard His position as something to hold on to. He let it go so that He could come close to us and be afflicted with us in our afflictions. And in that experience He suffered long; He bore all things for a long time; and He endured everything right to the point of the cross. He became obedient unto death. He humbled Himself, and became obedient even unto the death of the cross.

We are not just here to get information, but to meditate upon the love that God is, because God is love; Jesus is wisdom, which means that He will not seek His own, but will be easily entreated. He beareth all things, He endureth all things. And as we meditate upon it, we see that He was willing to be entreated to His own hurt in order to redeem us, to redeem those who hurt Him. Are we getting to know God more closely? He was not seeking His own, but was willing, not only to suffer in our afflictions, but to share with us that which is His. What is written about that? We hurt Him; we were causing Him grief because we had our own way; and we suffered the consequences; and Jesus comes and becomes one with us and suffers the consequences with us in our affliction, to do what? To redeem us and to share that which is His with us.

Divine Heirship

Romans 8:15 For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear;

The fear was because of our afflictions.

Romans 8:15 …but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. 16 The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: 17 And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ;

This is what He is willing to share – heirship of God, the position where He was, as one equal with God. He didn’t regard this as His own; love seeketh not her own. So what was He prepared to do? To share with us the heirship, if we would suffer together with Him, instead of holding to our own pleasures and sins.

Romans 8:17 …heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with [him], that we may be also glorified together.

He seeketh not His own. His own position, equal with God, He was willing to share with those who will suffer together with Him.

John, the beloved disciple, the apostle of love, understood this thing. He says, Just look at this;

1 John 3:1 Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not.

This is what life eternal is all about – to know Him. The world doesn’t know Him. But for those who do know Him, who know this reality, we should be called the sons of God, and the world will not know us.

1 John 3:2 Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is. 3 And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure.

This is a love that can only be in God, because God is love. And as we have seen in our exploration of His word thus far, He could be easily entreated; He was prepared to be entreated to do the things that He knew weren’t going to be any good. How difficult this is for us – to give in to someone else’s way. God gave in to someone else’s way. But He wasn’t going to lose; because, yes, He would be grieved and hurt with it, but He was the divine God who could steer the whole thing to success ultimately for those who wish and who will suffer together with Him. To know God like this, in all reality, is life eternal, because by beholding this detail, by meditating upon it, and letting every word of God stands as it reads, and opening the heart to this, we are beholding something that will do something to us. This is God’s character, God’s way, God’s love, God’s wisdom personified.

2 Corinthians 3:18 But we all, with open face beholding as in a [mirror] the glory of the Lord [the character of God], are changed into the same image from glory to glory, [even] as by the Spirit of the Lord.   

There is something here to meditate upon. I hope we are picking it up so we can meditate upon this and let it grow and germinate in our minds so that we will now see, So this is life eternal! so that I will behold this, and know God, and be changed exactly into the same condition, an attitude of being easy to be entreated, and letting the person who entreats us have their way, and letting the results take their course but still loving the soul and still continuing to show them the kind of longsuffering that exists in God. This is the way it should be between husband and wife. The woman is to obey her husband; the husband is to relate to her like Christ did to the church. It is a simultaneous activity of being easy to be entreated in one another’s wish. And it goes on through all the relationships of this world.

Life Eternal

We are endued with the same wisdom and the same love as we behold it; we become changed. The Spirit of Prophecy tells us that it is a law of the mind that we become that which we behold. So if I will behold this in detail, studying the components and how they manifest themselves in God, in Jesus Christ; as we marvel at this, there opens up before our mind’s eye a profound reality of salvation, personal, individual. I will do what Jesus did; I will let it all unfold and suffer along the way, as He did. This is the wisdom that comes from above – easy to be entreated, seeking not my own way and will, willing to suffer because of it, willing to endure and bear everything that is a consequence of that. This is life eternal.

Philippians 2:5 Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:

What is written for this person who humbles himself, who goes along with those who entreat him, even though to him it might not seem what he wants? Because they want it, I will go along with it and suffer the consequences as Jesus did. And we read here that it is this humbling of myself as Jesus practised which is life eternal.

Philippians 2:8 And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.

This is what wisdom did – He was easy to be entreated, seeking not His own. It’s the mind of God.

Philippians 2:9 Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name:

If you humble yourself before the Lord like that, what will God do? The person who is easily entreated, who does not seek his own, and who will look upon God and follow the same activity, what will God do for him? The same thing that He did for Jesus.

James 4:6 But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble. 7 Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. 8 Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse [your] hands, [ye] sinners; and purify [your] hearts, [ye] double minded. 9 Be afflicted, and mourn, and weep: let your laughter be turned to mourning, and [your] joy to heaviness.

Isn’t that what Jesus did?

Lifted Up

James 4:10 Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.

If you are easily entreated, if you do not seek your own, if you give over to the entreaties of someone else, what is promised here? The Lord will lift you up. The Lord will; not you yourself, not me. Not that I am now saying, “See? I was right after all.” No; nothing like that. It is the Lord that will lift up, as He lifted up Jesus; and we are now joint-heirs together with Christ of the same position. Heirs of God, joint-heirs with Christ, if so be that we suffer. If we humble ourselves we will be lifted together with Jesus to heavenly places.

May God’s word to us this day impart the intelligent salvation that has been played out before us in the reading of His word. May we continue in this meditation and we will have eternal life.

Amen.

(Illustration by Good News Productions, International, used under CC BY)

Posted on April 18, 2018, in Divine Service Sermons, Relationships and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. thank you for this very inspiring sermon (easy to be entreated) I really need that in my live.May God continue to bless your ministries

    • Le traducteur

      Greetings Brother Walter,
      Please forgive my failing to reply earlier. We are so glad to learn that this message, and hopefully others, are proving a practical help to you in your walk with the Lord,
      May the Lord continue to bless you accordingly is our prayer.
      Your brother in Christ,
      Victor Bireaud

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