How, by becoming like little children, can we be saved from eternal damnation?
In Matthew 18, Jesus was approached by his disciples who asked, “Who, then, is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” [vs 1]
It is clear that Jesus saw that pride was behind the question, so, he called a little child to him, and placed the child among them. Then, he said a most astonishing thing.
And he said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. [Matt 18:3]
What is it about little kids that we have to emulate? Is it because of their innocence? Well, legally speaking, no child can be held accountable because they lack the maturity to make cognitive responsible decisions. Innocent, really? Well, I love kids but they do the darndest things that I would not exactly call ‘innocent’. They may have angelic faces, but they can be… haha… such little imps. For example, whenever my wife and I were asked to babysit my brother’s 3 kids, after a week, we always go home declaring that we will not have kids of our own. I was kidding, of course, but even the Bible reveal a not so innocent description of a child’s nature.
Foolishness is bound up in the heart of a child… [Proverbs 22:15a]
So, again what in little kids was Jesus really referring to?
As a storyteller, I have regaled many little kids with all kinds of tales. I have observed one consistency among them, that they were quick to believe in my stories, even to those that were fantasies. One other thing, they are also quick to be attracted to the hero figures of those stories.
I believe this is the attribute that Jesus wanted us to focus on. We adults have become so complicated in our thinking that we tend to forget the simplicity of what pleases God, a child-like-faith.