Monday, June 27, 2011
Greatest in the Kingdom
“Therefore whoever humbles himself as this little child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.” —Matthew 18:4
Celebrity Apprentice is a fascinating television show. Contestants are divided into teams, usually men and women, who compete against each other. They are given tasks to fulfill, and it is determined at the end who won each task. There is essentially one thing on the contestants’ minds when they sit in that boardroom with Donald Trump: How can I win this competition? Contestants may form an alliance here and there, but the reality is there is only one winner.
This is what most people want in life. They want to know how to win. They want to know how to be number one, how to be the most successful.
That was the topic of discussion among the disciples one day. They asked Jesus, “Who then is greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” (Matthew 18:1). But Jesus basically bypassed the question and did something completely unexpected. He called a little child over and then set the child among them. Imagine the scene: there was a little child, probably very cute, looking around at the disciples, wide-eyed. Then Jesus said, “Assuredly, I say to you, unless you are converted and become as little children, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore whoever humbles himself as this little child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 18:3–4).
The idea Jesus was communicating was not that we should be childish, but that we should always maintain a childlike faith. There is a big difference between the two. Ephesians 4:14 tells us, “We should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine. . . . ”
The fact of the matter is that we need to grow up spiritually. Yet at the same time, we want to have the humility of a child.
Summary Sentence: What did Jesus mean when He told His followers they must become as little children? Are you growing up and being child-like?
Copyright © 2011 by Harvest Ministries. All rights reserved.
Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
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