but Jesus said, “Let the children come to me, and do not prevent them; for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” Matthew 19:14 NABRE
Jesus traveled to Judea and a great crowd followed Him. He had a discussion about marriage and then the gospel writer Matthew includes a small section about children. Parents were bringing their children to Jesus so that He might lay His hands on them and receive a blessing. Jesus had grown in popularity, His healing’s had become well known and so it is not surprising that parents would want this Holy Man to bless their children. It is said that only one in two children lived past the age of five in the time of Jesus, receiving a blessing from Jesus would have been a hopeful gesture on the part of the parents. But for some reason Jesus’ disciples try to stop the children from coming to Him. Children would have been viewed as second class citizens and perhaps not worth the time and energy of the Master, so the disciples may have been pushing them away as a protection of Jesus. Jesus’ however wants the children to come to Him. Like all people Jesus loved them very much and to be in touch with the children must have given him great joy. He said to the disciples the kingdom of heaven belongs to these children. Jesus is including children with everyone else who are welcome in heaven. This could have given parents who lost children great relief to know the children are in heaven.
Additionally, Jesus’ provides a message about being child-like as a path to heaven. Children are trusting an honestly enthusiastic, these are qualities that should exist in Christians. Children in general are joyful and a pleasure quite often, being like a child is a way to be a good Christian.
Are you child-like in your enthusiasm for Jesus? Do you seek blessings for your children?Children in general are joyful and a pleasure quite often, being like a child is a way to be a good Christian. Click To Tweet
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