Summary: Christ cares about youth and their spiritual development therefore, so should we.


TEXT: MARK 10:13-16


INTRODUCTION: A. Two young children were talking to each other about parent problems. One of them

complained to the other, saying: “First they teach you to talk, then they teach you to

walk, and as soon as you learn how to do both, they tell you to ‘Sit down and shut


1. What is your view of young people in the church?

2. How do you believe your view matches up with Jesus’ view?

3. Does your attitude toward the young sound something like this:

a. We want you in Sunday school but we’re not going to go out of our way to see

that your spiritual education needs are covered.

b. We want in the Sunday morning worship service but we’re not going to do

anything that meets your needs

--Just sit still and be quiet

c. We want you here on Wednesday nights but don’t make too much noise


d. We want you in church as long as it doesn’t cost too much money or too much

of my time

B. Mk. 10:13-16 – “People were bringing little children to Jesus to have him touch them,

but the disciples rebuked them. 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. I tell you the truth, anyone who will not receive the

kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.’ And he took the children in his

arms, put his hands on them and blessed them.”

1. John Piper asks: “Have you ever asked why God designed the world so that the

human race multiplies by having babies that take years to become adults? Why

didn’t God design the human race so that we multiply like earthworms: one adult

splits to become another adult? He could have done it that way or any number of

ways. Why did God ordain that there be children? And not just adults?”

2. Piper gives this answer: “Children stand for something. They point to something.

They represent something. They signify something bigger than themselves. They

stand for the kind of dependence and helplessness and need and insufficiency and

faith that is required of adults to enter the kingdom of God. To ‘such as these’

(verse 14) belongs the kingdom. That’s the meaning of their unique existence. They

point the way to salvation: to such as these belongs the kingdom.”

C. Don’t be upset if you’re a teenager/young adult and you hear me use the term


1. In the Greek of the first century, there was no word for “teenager”

--the word used in our passage today means youth of any age

2. Also, in the first century, you were either a child or an adult

a. Once you turned 13, you were treated like an adult

b. Some of you are thinking, “Hey, that’s great!”

--You not only were treated like an adult, you had the responsibilities of an adult

and had to work like an adult

c. Now you’re thinking, “Whoa! Bummer!”

3. Actually, because you’re young, lots of folks are jealous of you

--We’re funny people. When we’re young, we want to be old and when we’re old

we want to be young.

D. What does our passage teach us about our ministry to youth?

--three basic things:


A. Did you notice that it says “people” were bringing children to Jesus?

1. I wonder why Mark doesn’t use the term for “parents”?

--I guess it was because more were involved than just parents

a. They must have been grandparents, brothers and sisters, and even neighbors

b. The same event is recorded in Matthew and Luke and they also use the term for “people” and not


2. Many of us will sit back and talk about all that’s wrong with the young people and how things are not

like they were when we were growing up but we never do anything positive to get involved with them.

--We’re called to bring the youth to know and be blessed by Jesus

3. As a result of the adults who brought the youth to Jesus and Jesus’ acceptance of them, the youth were

able to find intimate relationship with Jesus.

B. Why is it important to bring them to Jesus while they’re young?

1. A 2004 Barna survey showed that 85 percent of Christians began their relationship with Jesus before

age 14.

2. A fairly recent Gallup poll showed that:

a. 19 out of 20 Christians are saved before the age of 25.

b. After age 25, 1 in 10,000

c. After age 35, 1 in 50,000

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