Children - An Example To Adults - Parents

Bible Book: Matthew  22 : 13-15
Subject: Children; Example
INTRODUCTION

The children’s song, “Jesus Loves The Little Children” is based on clear biblical teaching. Matthew, Mark, and Luke attest to this truth on the passion of Christ.

In this passage, and its companion text, Matthew 18:1-5, Jesus spoke of adults entering into the Kingdom of God (Heaven) and used the attitude of little children as an example of what’s required for kingdom citizenship.

I’ve thought for some time that we have confused the attitude required for “Kingdom Entrance.” We believe children should come like adults, however, Jesus calls adults to come like children.

I. THE EXAMPLE OF COMPASSION

The disciples presumed to determine who could and could not approach Jesus. The parents of these children wanted Jesus to touch them and bless them, and He was more than willing to accommodate that desire.

Mark, Luke, and Matthew refer to the bringing of the children which indicates a continuing process, and likely for an extended period of time. Word has gotten out of Jesus’ love, care, and compassion for children.

In Matthew 17:18 Jesus healed a little boy

In Matthew 18:2-3 Jesus called a child to Himself

In Luke 18:15 they brought babies to Him.

“Then they also brought infants to Him that He might touch them; but when the disciples saw it, they rebuked them.”

“disciples rebuked them” – resented the intrusion into their private time with Jesus. Word carries the idea of threatening. Even though the disciples had spent two years with Jesus, hearing and observing Him, they did not yet fully share His mind and heart.

The Jewish Talumd taught Jewish parents to bring their children to respected rabbis for blessings and prayer.

TESTIMONY: Janet and I took Deanna/Hollie to be prayed for and blessed.

We have attempted to take Eph 6:4 seriously.

“And you, fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord.”

I gave my girls Bible verses

Matthew 6:33, “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.”

Proverbs 3:5-6

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart,

And lean not on your own understanding;

In all your ways acknowledge Him,

And He shall direct your paths.”

Today, they are grown and have children of their own. Now, I write them and give them these verses:

Proverbs 23:24-25

“The father of the righteous will greatly rejoice,

And he who begets a wise child will delight in him.

Let your father and your mother be glad,

And let her who bore you rejoice.”

“As the flower in the garden stretches toward the light of the sun, so there is in the child a mysterious inclination toward the eternal light. Have you ever noticed this mysterious thing that, when you tell the smallest child about God, it never asks with strangeness and wonder, ‘What or who is God? I have never seen Him’ – but listens with shining face to the words as though they were soft loving sounds from the land of home? Or when you teach a child to fold its little hands in prayer, it does this as though it were a matter of course, as though there were opening for it that world of which it had been dreaming with longing and anticipation. Or tell them, these little ones, the stories of the Savior, show them the pictures with scenes and personages of the Bible (and) see how their pure eyes shine, how their little hearts beat.” R.C.H. Lenski

II. THE EXAMPLE OF CONVERSION.

“Do not hinder them coming to Me”

Let them come to Me and I will show you how one enters Heaven.

“for of such is the kingdom of heaven”

The kingdom of heaven belongs to (encompasses and is characterized by children “such as these.”)

The kingdom of heaven is the sphere of God’s rule in Christ through gracious salvation. The Lord uses His Word, His Spirit, His witness and divinely illuminates understanding of what it means to trust in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.

" ‘of such’ (“such as these”) – because of young age or mental deficiency, are incapable of exercising saving faith. God grants them, in the event of death, entrance into the kingdom of the sovereign operation of His grace. When children die before they reach the age of decision, they go into the presence of Jesus Christ, because they are under the special protection of the sovereign King.”

John MacArthur

As they grow older and responsible, what an awesome responsibility faces Christian parents to make sure that their children are taught about Christ and are led to receive Him as their Savior when they are able to exercise saving faith.

Remember, we come like children:

1. Openness (not close-minded)

2. Truthfulness

3. Humbleness (not proud)

4. Tenderness (not hard)

5. Willingness

a. Converted

b. Like Children

Dependent, helpless, simple, trusting of others, without ambition for greatness.

c. Humble

Jesus was and is such an evangelist!

2 Peter 3:9, “The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.”

Call people to the kingdom

CONCLUSION

Matthew 5:2-9, “Then He opened His mouth and taught them, saying:

"Blessed are the poor in spirit,

For theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Blessed are those who mourn,

For they shall be comforted.

Blessed are the meek,

For they shall inherit the earth.

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,

For they shall be filled.

Blessed are the merciful,

For they shall obtain mercy.

Blessed are the pure in heart,

For they shall see God.

Blessed are the peacemakers,

For they shall be called sons of God.”

Note the progressive work that leads to the kingdom.