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Devotional – “A Gospel For Kids” (8 July 2018)

This week we’re running a Bible Holiday Club as an outreach to our local community. The theme is ‘Rock Star’, which (besides making a great excuse to play great music and dress up) is designed to  contrast Jesus with the ‘stars’ of this world. Where the star only wants to spend time with people who make him feel important, Jesus eats and drinks with sinners (Matthew 9:9-13). Where the star wants to be waited on hand and foot, Jesus came not to be served but to serve (Matthew 20:25-28).

One of the most special things about sharing Jesus with kids like this is that they actually connect with him. They understand what these things mean. Four- and five-year-olds understand how Jesus is different. Seven- and eight-year-olds understand how the life he offers is better than anything the world offers. As we dialogue with the kids during the Bible talk, the group time, the dramas, one thing is very clear – they get it.

Jesus once found himself receiving families who wanted their children blessed by him. His disciples didn’t get it and tried to move the families on, claiming Jesus had more important things to do.

 

“But Jesus called them to him, saying, “Let the children come to me, and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of God. Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it.” – Luke 18:16–17 (ESV)

 

We can easily make the mistake of putting hedges around the gospel message, believing that there are those who are too simple, too young, too unspiritual (whatever that means) to make the most of it. On the contrary, we sometimes swing the other way, and think that there are those who are too educated, too secure, too old, too disinterested for the gospel to make any connection with them.

 

“The text elevates children as people, and elevates their faith, and as a result elevates ours.”R. Kent Hughes

 

Jesus says the kingdom is for little children as much as anyone else. Little, trusting, eager, dependant, simple children – the kingdom of God belongs to them.

R. Kent Hughes, writing about the same event in Mark’s gospel (Mark 10:13-16), says, “The text elevates children as people, and elevates their faith, and as a result elevates ours.” [1]

We all come to Jesus the same way, in simple faith. The gospel is capable of generating this simple faith in anyone, no matter who they are. The gospel saves a child the same way it saves a Saul the Pharisee (Acts 9:1-9).

While this is a call to not ignore the importance of children’s ministries and sharing the gospel with kids, it’s also a call to not ignore any opportunity to share the gospel. If all it takes is to have faith like a child, anyone can be saved.

Live it: Who do you think may be beyond the reach of the gospel? Pray for an opportunity to talk to them about Jesus.

 

 


References

  1. R. Kent Hughes, Mark Volume 2: Jesus, Servant and Savior, Preaching the Word; Accordance electronic ed. (Wheaton: Crossway Books, 1989), 56.

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