By Daniel Storm
“Whoever does not receive the Kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it…”
What does it mean to trust someone? It is a firm belief that someone will follow through or do something. In short terms it is to rely on another—believing they will come through. For some people, trust does not come easy because they have been betrayed by others in their life or people they trusted never came through.
In Mark 10:13-31, Jesus hits home the notion of trust and what it means to trust God. The first portion of this passage (10:13-16) little children come to Jesus. At first the disciples stopped the children from coming to Jesus but Jesus rebuke the disciples and told them to let the children come. Then Jesus said something amazing, “whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it…” What does Jesus mean by this? He is pointing to a childlike trust. A child trusts their parents even though they do not know everything. A child is dependent upon their parents knowing that they will be protected and provided for. A child knows that their parents will be there for them and are dependable. (this all assumes the way God intended a family). Jesus is emphasizing childlike faith.
This passage is put right next to a contrasting passage in Mark 10:17-31. In this passage we have a rich young man who wants to follow Jesus. Jesus tells him to leave everything and follow him (in doing so the man would have to completely trust Jesus). The man could not do this so he did not follow Jesus.
Do you see the contrast between the child and the rich young man? The child trusted and was completely dependent upon Jesus. The children didn’t know everything but knew they needed Jesus and trusted him wholehearted. The rich young man trust in himself and possessions. He did not trust and depend upon Jesus and when asked to he refused.
What does this have to do with you today?
First, the reason Jesus notes that we can’t enter the Kingdom of God unless we are like a child is the truth that we cannot save ourselves. Our salvation is completely dependent upon Jesus, who is fully dependable and trustworthy. Therefore, we put our full trust and faith (like a child) in the work of Jesus.
Second, in our day to day life do we trust that Jesus will come through. Even though we don’t see or understand everything do we trust that He is still at work. So, I want to leave you with a challenge. Do you have the faith of a child or the rich young man?