Little Ones Loved by God
I wanted to draw your attention to part of the passage of scripture we are looking at Sunday, namely Luke 18:15-17 (we will be dealing with 18:15-27 but I want to take a few moments and think over 15-17).
Lets take a glance at these verses:
Now they were bringing even infants to him that he might touch them. And when the disciples saw it, they rebuked them. 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. Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it.” (ESV)
I think that when Eugene Peterson penned the paraphrase of this text (The Message) he really got emotionally involved. Do you agree?
People brought babies to Jesus, hoping he might touch them. When the disciples saw it, they shooed them off. Jesus called them back. “Let these children alone. Don’t get between them and me. These children are the kingdom’s pride and joy. Mark this: Unless you accept God’s kingdom in the simplicity of a child, you’ll never get in.” (the Message)
Why does Jesus use little children as object lessons of saving faith? I was reading William Wilberforce’s comment on this narrative and was encouraged by his clarity:
I delight in little children: I could spend hours in watching them. How much there is in them that the Saviour loved, when he took a little child and set him in the midst: their simplicity, their confidence in you, the fund of happiness with which their beneficent Creator has endued them; that when intelligence is less developed and so affords less enjoyment, the natural spirits are an inexhaustible fund of infantile pleasure.
In the year 1873, Reverend James Hamilton composed thoughts parallel to Wilberforce in his book of sermons when he wrote:
‘Bring your little children to the Saviour. Place them in his arms. Devote them to his service. Born in his camp, let them wear from the first his colours. Taking advantage of timely opportunities, and with all tenderness of spirit, seek to endear them to the Friend of Sinners, the Good Shepherd of the Lambs, the loving Guardian of the little children.’
Oh to bask in the Father’s love like a child. Tenderly and confidently trusting all the Father has for us flows out of His limitless love for us. Even when times seem bleak and we cannot see his hand working in our midst, we can trust His heart. Let’s seek to be child-like in our faith.
See You Sunday,