Prepare to Listen. Still your inner noises then pray: Turn my eyes from looking at vanities; give me life in your ways.
Prayerfully Read Luke 18:15-17
15People were bringing even infants to him that he might touch them; and when the disciples saw it, they sternly ordered them not to do it. 16But Jesus called for them and said, ‘Let the little children come to me, and do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of God belongs. 17Truly I tell you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will never enter it.’
Jesus came, Mary sang, to bring down the powerful and lift up the lowly (Lk 1:52). Children are among the lowly. They're weak, vulnerable, often exploited by unscrupulous adults. They represent the bottom of the social and economic scale. They have no power. They are the lowly Christ came to lift up. Jesus’ disciples, in this scene, represent the powerful as they “sternly ordered” the parents to stop bothering Jesus.
Jesus was quick to bring down the powerful, his disciples, with a sharp rebuke, “Let the little children come to me.” And he was quick to lift up the lowly, saying, “it is to such as these that the kingdom of God belongs.” To children, and to all the lowly, those at the bottom of the economic and social scale; those exploited by the greedy powerful; to all the disenfranchised and marginalized no matter how old, to such belongs the kingdom of God.
It was shocking to advance the lowly, such as children, as examples of who is in and who is out of the kingdom. But this is Jesus’ social program, the way of the kingdom. In him the powerful have been brought down and the lowly have been raised up. And we, who claim to be followers of Jesus, are expected to live this way, becoming vulnerable, siding with the least of the least. Because, said Jesus, “Truly I tell you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will never enter it.”
Who are the lowly among you and how could you lift them up?
Respond to Jesus
Lord Jesus, you came for the least and you want me to be on their side, giving up my power. Teach me how to receive your kingdom as a child, in humility and vulnerability. Amen.
Live obediently. Side with the lowly.
I began reading my Bible when I was 8 years old. I loved it then (albeit didn't understand much) and I still love reading and studying it. I may understand a little more but I keep learning new stuff, seeing things I missed for years. This journey with Luke during Lent has been another new learning experience for me, deepening my relationship with Jesus. I pray it will do the same for you.