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Blog: Lee Younger

Why Little Children?

CCC Oak Ridge

Once Jesus said that anyone who doesn’t receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it. But, why did He say that? What did He mean? What do little kids have that I don’t have?

Here’s some traditional crap people always say:

Little kids have a pure faith.
Little kids are just so innocent and sweet.
Little kids are more kind and loving.
Little kids are selfless and giving.

You know what? The people who say that stuff have obviously never had kids and/or have never hung around any actual human children. Look, kids can be a ton of fun and they are full of life, but they are not necessarily all those things people always say they are. They don’t all have this amazingly pure faith automatically. Kids ask the question “Why?” more than anyone in the world. They aren’t automatically more selfless, innocent or sweet. They can be viciously selfish and filled with all kinds of duplicitous scheming. Kids don’t have to be taught how to lie and bully and exclude other kids weaker than themselves or different than themselves. Now, obviously I’m not talking about every kid in the world, I’m just saying that kids are just junior humans, which means they are fallen and need to be saved just like the rest of us.

So, what in the world did Jesus mean when He said you have to be like a little child?

Well, when this little scene with Jesus and children happens in the book of Luke, the writer tells us that the children that were brought to Jesus were actually infants... they weren’t little elementary school-aged kids - they were babies! Jesus was saying that you have to change and become like babies!

So, what are babies like? Well, I’ll tell ya: Babies are helpless. Babies are completely and utterly needy. Babies can’t do a thing for themselves. Babies can’t feed themselves, they can’t clean themselves, they can’t protect themselves... dang - babies can’t even calm themselves down! Babies are the most shamelessly needy folks on the planet. Whenever they need something (which is always) they let you know by screaming until they get it! Babies are completely and totally dependent on the person who cares for them, and that’s what Jesus was talking about!

Jesus was saying that in order to know what it’s like to live a life with God, you have to become like a baby. You have to realize that you don’t have what it takes and that you need Jesus for absolutely every single thing that happens in your day. If you think you’ve got what it takes, you’re not there yet. When you’re helpless and needy and begging for Jesus to take care of you, then you’re exactly the person Jesus wants you to be.