"Now they were bringing even infants to him that he might touch them. And when the disciples saw it, they rebuked them. 16 But Jesus called them to him, saying, 'Let the children come to me, and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of God. 17 Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it.'" Luke 18:15-17
"And they were bringing children to him that he might touch them, and the disciples rebuked them. 14 But when Jesus saw it, he was indignant and said to them, ‘Let the children come to me; do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of God. 15 Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it.’ 16 And he took them in his arms and blessed them, laying his hands on them." Mark 10:13-16
Luke 18:15-17 is an application of the previous parables regarding the importance of those who are considered to be marginalized and the culture of that day. In this passage, “even infants” (v.15) are of eternal significance to the Lord and his kingdom.
1. The failure of the disciples to recognize the importance of children (Luke 18:15)
We can be in the presence of Jesus and hear his teaching and still be negligent or abysmal in “connecting the dots” (or making life application).
2. The urgent desire of parents: that the children might be embraced and blessed by Jesus (Mark 10:13, 16)
These parents intuitively understood (with limited knowledge who Jesus was) that there was power, healing, renewal and refreshment in the presence of Jesus.
3. The response of Jesus
He rebuked (sternly corrected, spoke seriously to or warned) the disciples and was indignant toward them (Mark 10:14)
- He called the children to come to him as he affectionately embraced them.
4. Entering the kingdom in a childlike fashion of trust and dependence
1. What is the tenor of a rebuke (Luke 18:15)? Look up the same word in Mark 4:39, Mark 8:33 and Luke 23:40. In other words, a rebuke is a serious warning or stern correction regarding the missed significance of children.
2. Consider Malachi 4:6: “And he will turn the hearts of fathers to their children and the hearts of children to their fathers, lest I come and strike the land with a decree of utter destruction.”
Do you agree with the following statement: If you do not love children and have a desire for the blessing of the coming generations you are not walking in the power of the Holy Spirit and it may be an indication that you do not have a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ.
3. What is the severe lesson of Mark 9:42?
4. What is the concept of a “2 to 2.5 hour commitment to worship and biblical growth” on Sunday morning?
5. Why is worshiping together as a family important? Jerome (347-420) said, “The Scriptures are shallow enough for a babe to drink without fear of drowning and deep enough for a theologian to swim without touching the bottom.”
6. Why did Luther pray for every family to be a strong representative of a “little church”?