Jesus revealed the truth represented by a little child not many in this sophisticated world can accept. Mt 18:1-14:
18 At that time the disciples came to Jesus and asked, “Who, then, is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” 2 He called a little child to him, and placed the child among them. 3 And he said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. 4 Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. 5 And whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me. 6 “If anyone causes one of these little ones—those who believe in me—to stumble, it would be better for them to have a large millstone hung around their neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea. 7 Woe to the world because of the things that cause people to stumble! Such things must come, but woe to the person through whom they come! 8 If your hand or your foot causes you to stumble, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to enter life maimed or crippled than to have two hands or two feet and be thrown into eternal fire. 9 And if your eye causes you to stumble, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to enter life with one eye than to have two eyes and be thrown into the fire of hell.
These words show
(1) that children are influenced by others for good or bad
(2) that the earlier they come to Christ the better;
(3) that they should not be hindered from coming by wrong teaching;
(4) that parents should bring them to the Savior
Bring them – Jesus however said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them; for it is to those who are childlike that the Kingdom of the Heavens belongs.” Matthew 19:14 He said this to show his humility, that he was not above taking notice of any; and to teach his disciples to regard the weakest believers, and such as were but children in knowledge; and to inform them what all ought to be, who expect the kingdom of heaven
Be as little children- In Mark and Luke it is said he immediately added, “Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child shall not enter therein.” Whosoever shall be children of the kingdom must be humble, unambitious, harmless and inoffensive, free from rancour and malice, meek, modest, without self-conceit and desires of grandeur and superiority, amiable, lovely and uncorrupted by the world. He speaks of such persons as resemble children or are like them in temper, who are in the kingdom of heaven.
Be blessed – it was proper that they should be brought to him. At the same time, it was proper on their own account that they should be brought to him, and that his blessing should be sought on them. It is children who in their early years of life. who are subject to infections and frequently ill because their immunity has not been built up. So too Faith Child. if you are suffering much in your faith, you need to seek the Lord’s blessing and deliverance from the clutch of hindrances to your faith and to seek those who can help you be strengthened in faith. In this context of sickness James 5:14 teaches “Is any sick among you? let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord” – is it not to seek a blessing to be free of the sickness? When we need to seek help and blessings we should
Be curious – He did not stay with His parents in the temple, and when they started for home He was not with them. In a room connected with the temple there was a school taught by the rabbis , and to this place after a while the child Jesus came. He sat with the other youth at the feet of the great teachers and listened to their words. The Jews had many wrong ideas about the Messiah. Jesus knew this. As one who wished to be taught, He asked questions about what the prophets had written. The fifty-third chapter of Isaiah speaks of the Saviour’s death, and Jesus read this chapter, and asked its meaning. The rabbis could give no answer. They began to question Jesus, and they were astonished at His knowledge of the Scriptures. How curious are we about knowing more of His Word? That is the only way to know the plan of God for our lives. “The child grew, and waxed strong in spirit, filled with wisdom: and the grace of God was upon Him.” Every child may gain knowledge as Jesus did. From the parables he taught he must have learned from nature, from observing others, and being sensitive to the needs and burdens of others and the culture of the times. He learnt to discern what was not right to in interpreting the law.
Be focussed -“Son, why hast Thou thus dealt with us? Behold, Thy father and I have sought Thee sorrowing.” Mary said when she found Jesus. “How is it that ye sought Me?” Jesus answered. “Wist ye not that I must be about My Father’s business?” Luke 2:48, 49. He knew what was important – Do we know our priorities simply? Faith Child must learn the priorities of the Kingdom. First love the Lord, thy God with all your being, and then love others and yourself. When we have the priority, our relationships will be right.
Be obedient and subject to authority – He obeyed his parents and was subject to them – Though He knew that He was the Son of God, Jesus went home to Nazareth with Joseph and Mary. Until thirty years of age He was “subject unto them.” Luke 2:51. The Lord has placed us in the family of God, our local church. Are you subject to that local body and authorities or do you not follow them?
Be strong in body and mind – As Jesus worked in childhood and youth, He grew strong in body and mind. He tried to use all His powers in such a way as to keep them in health, that He might do the best work in every line. “And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man.” Luke 2:40,52. He also grew in social relationship as he found favor with God and man. So must we. Not to compromise on faith and moral values, but in patience and all the qualities of the fruit of the Spirit.
Be rested – Jesus must have cultivated the habit of resting in childhood as he showed how he moved away from the crowds and took his disciples away from them to rest and to commune with God. He knew the importance of communing with His Father, and so must we Faith Child for without Him we can do nothing. All our efforts will be in vain. We must acknowledge that God is in control and rest on His promises and in His Word. Casting our cares on Him and relaxing in His love to be refreshed and renewed and to mount up with wings as eagles to face another new day or challenges along the way.
Do not stumble children – it is a serious “crime” and Jesus seriously warns against it , even including being thrown into eternal fire. He calls us as children, as His children today. He has shown us the way to behave as children. Can we do less? Do not hinder any child from coming to Jesus. Bring His children to the Lord in prayer today. He will never fail but respond lovingly and tenderly. Jesus who was a child understands all.
Are you a Faith Child? Have you children – physical and spiritual? Are you bringing them to Jesus? Are you teaching them the example of the Lord? Be sure you are not teaching wrongly lest you become a stumbler and end in eternal fire.
We need to have the simplicity of a child with regard to our faith so that we believe whatever the Lord says and trust and obey Him. Humility of a child will keep a person from pride which leads to a fall. We need to teach our children that it is not too early to learn about the ways of God, and to guide them in their youth, that we may be proud as the Lord, when they turn out right. May the Lord help us in our relationship with Him and in bringing our kids to Him.