The “Little” Children and Jesus Mark 10:13-16
New International Version (NIV)
13 People were bringing little children to Jesus for him to place his hands on them, but the disciples rebuked them. 14 When Jesus saw this, he was indignant. He said to them, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. 15 Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.” 16 And he took the children in his arms, placed his hands on them and blessed them.
While listening to Pastor Delton’s message this morning about the power of influence, I became curious about the description of the children in these verses. Three times, they are called “little”. Now, children, most children, are little in stature, so I started wondering about what that meant in the context of this story. I think they are talking about the age of the children.
I looked at other translations, and some of them said “little” or “young”, and some of them just said ‘children’. Could the reason have something to do with their perception of authority figures? Young, or little children, say younger than 4 or 5 years old, tend to be very literal, and take everything said to them at face value. Older children begin to question authority, and I know from raising my own children, that questioning got more voluminous as they got older! Jesus was stating that we should trust him just like small/young children trust and depend on their parents/elders.
These verses remind me that I don’t have to know the answers to life’s questions to trust that God loves me. I don’t have to understand why the dinosaurs aren’t mentioned in the Bible before I can believe that God created me, loves me, and sent his Son to die and rise again for forgiveness of my sins. God simply wants me to recognize his sovereignty, thank him, praise him, and hold conversations (pray) with him about my life.
Father God, please help me to begin each day with a receptive heart like a young child. Send your Holy Spirit to remind me that it is just that simple, that he wants to be a priority in my life, and loves me so much that he sent his Son to die for my sins, and for EVERYONE around me. Help me share this simple faith so that others will know you too. In Jesus’ name. Amen.