Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Jesus and the children

In a book* which I will soon review, the following passage is noted.

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. (Mark 10:13-16)
Sunday school 101, right? Jesus is so gentle and cares about everyone, even the little teeny babies.

The author holds a slightly different view. +/-
"This is where every sermon I've heard depicting this moment falls short. Jesus did not lovingly and quietly coo, 'Oh, just let the little children come over to me for a moment.' This strong, powerful man, this brawny carpenter, filled with exasperation, anger and even rage, apparently raised his voice with great passion. 'Let the little children come to me! Don't you dare hinder
them! My kingdom belongs to such as these.'

Never in my research of the world's artwork have I seen this Jesus. He who not long afterward would wield a whip in the temple to drive out the moneychangers and turn over their product-laden tables was now equally incensed at this corruption" (Stafford with Merrill, 198-199).

More on this later.

*Stafford, Wess, with Dean Merrill. Too Small to Ignore. Colorado Springs: WaterBrook Press, 2007.
Images: Web Gallery of Art

1 comment:

  1. That was not enough, Elizabeth.....

    Frankly, I can't imagine Jesus speaking at the end of either spectrum. I have always imagined him speaking forcefully. Gently enough not to frighten the little children who were there, but with piercing looks at the apostles and intensity in His voice, because he was going to say something very important....and not about children. However...can't wait for more.


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