Jesus said “Truly I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter at all.” Mark 10:15.
What could Jesus mean by this statement?
It’s a puzzling statement, much like the one He said to Nicodemus in John 3:3. “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” Nicodemus said, “How can a man be born when he is old? He cannot enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born, can he?”
We have the same reaction as Nicodemus, how can an adult become like a child? He cannot go back in time and live his childhood all over again, can he?
Just as Jesus was not telling Nicodemus to go back to his mother’s womb, He is not telling us to go back in time, but to become like a child in our faith towards Him.
In our society we are taught from an early age to live independently of our parents. They teach us how to be productive citizens and how to care for ourselves. While this is an important step towards our survival, it also creates in us an independent lifestyle that is opposed to faith and trust. We tend to have only trust in what we can see and do for ourselves. In order to build our faith in God it is necessary that we lose some of that independence and put trust in Him.
Notice Jesus did not say to become like an infant, helpless and needing constant attention, nor did He say as a teenager, fighting for control, but as a child.
Think about the actions of a child. They are carefree going about their day humming a tune. They rarely complain, have no concept of time or money, they do what is told to them, they easily believe what you tell them and they forgive and forget quickly.
Children are the perfect example of a faith like walk with God. They unknowingly follow all the Biblical principles laid out for us.
Ephesians 5:19, “…singing and making melody with your heart to the Lord.”
James 5:9, “Do not complain, brethren, against one another, that you yourselves may not be judged.”
Psalm 31:14-15, “But as for me, I will trust thee, O Lord. I say, Thou art my God, my times are in Thy hands…”
Ecclesiastes 5:10, “He who loves money will not be satisfied with money, nor he who loves abundance with its income.”
James 1:22, “But prove yourselves doers of the word and not merely hearers who delude themselves.”
Ephesians 4:32, “And be kind to one another, tender hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.”
Becoming like a child in faith is a difficult task, but one that is possible. Think about the time you believed in Jesus for salvation. You pushed aside all the thoughts that said, “Don’t believe,” and you made a choice to believe what the Bible and the preacher said.
It is the same in our walk of faith. When you read anything in the Bible, you have the choice to believe it or to believe the thoughts that say, “This was for Jesus day and is not relevant for today,” or “I know it is for some but not for me.”
2 Corinthians 10:3-5, explains to us, in the war of faith it is the speculations and prideful thoughts raised up against the knowledge of God that are in opposition to our faith. It also tells us how to win the war by taking every thought captive, to the obedience of Christ.
Father, help us to be childlike, putting all our trust and faith in you. In the name of Jesus, amen