Summary: Christ says we need to be childlike in our approach. There is a lot we can learn from the children.
Crawling Into the Kingdom
"Crawling Into the Kingdom"
A first grader became curious because her father brought home a briefcase full of papers every evening. Her mother explained, “Daddy has so much to do that he can’t finish it all at the office. That’s why he has to bring work home at night.” “Well then,” asked the child innocently, “why don’t they put him in a slower group?”
Opening Illustration: Everything in the mouth!
Aren’t children the best?
We have much to learn about the Kingdom of God. And children can teach us something about that.
Our story opens with people bringing their babies to Jesus so that He would touch them, hold them, and pray a blessing for them.
But the disciples didn’t think so. They became irritated with the whole scene, and began rebuking the parents to back off of Jesus. They probably felt like these people were wasting Jesus’ time. They probably felt like there were other “more important people” to reach than mere babies and little children.
But Jesus wasn’t irritated at all. He wanted the children to come to Him, so He called for them to come back to Him. (v. 16-17)
The second part of our reading deals with a different character.
A rich young ruler approached Jesus wanting to know what he could do to inherit eternal life.
The man seemed to think that he had been beyond reproof in keeping the ten commandments. Jesus said that he lacked one thing: he needed to sell everything of his and give away the money to the poor, and come follow Him.
This brought great sadness to the young man. He was not willing to make such a drastic move, so he went away disappointed.
This conversation didn’t unfold the way most people expected. On top of that, Jesus said that it would be easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter heaven.
Riches were seen by most as a clear indication of God’s blessing upon that person. Those who heard all of this became exasperated and wanted to know how anybody could be saved? (v. 26) (READ v. 27)
What a difference in reaction to Jesus. That blind unselfish trusting faith of the children to that of the young man who just could not give up his love of riches to give his life to Christ.