Child-ish faith or child-like faith?

26 September 2013

Last Sunday we heard Jesus say some famous words:

“Let the children come to me; do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of God. Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it.” (Mark 10.14-15)

But what does Jesus mean when he says to ‘receive the Kingdom of God like a child’? Is he saying that Christians should aspire to immaturity and to regress in their knowledge of the world? Of course not. The New Testament was written by some of Jesus’ closest followers, who had clearly learned, reflected, and studied at length.

Instead, Jesus is calling us to take him at his word – as a child would. As we grow up we become accustomed to people promising much and delivering little, letting us down, and being hypocrites or outright liars. We come to Jesus suspicious and cynical. But not children – they tend to believe what people tell them.

Notice that Jesus says ‘truly’. He often says this. It’s a reminder that, in contrast to everyone else, he tells us the truth (always). Jesus is looking for followers who will believe what he says. He promises – quite plain and simple – that those who take him at his word will not be disappointed.

This blog post was written by Dan Martin.