GCN 03 The Priority of Children’s Ministry — English Transcript

hello I’m Jack agar and in this section
we’re going to be speaking about the
priority of children the priority of
children’s ministry in the Gospel of
Mark we have a most fascinating story of
Jesus and a discussion that he had with
his disciples let me read this to you
I’ll be reading from mark chapter 10
beginning in verse 13 if you have your
Bibles please read along with me I’m
gonna be reading from the English
standard version of the Bible in mark
chapter 10 verse 13 it says and they
were bringing children to him that’s to
Jesus that he might touch them and the
disciples rebuked them but when Jesus
saw it he was indignant and he said to
them let the children come to me 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 even enter it
and he took them in his arms and he
blessed them laying his hands on them I
want you to think about this scenario
here the Lord Jesus Christ is obviously
in another day filled with multitudes
people everywhere
visiting participating involved in
ministry as Jesus no doubt was teaching
was healing was disciple in his
disciples and in the midst of their busy
day here come parents and in the context
of the Scriptures here the parents are
bringing their little children now
within Israel at that time and day there
was a custom when someone that was
famous someone of renown came into any
community it was very customary for the
parents to bring their children so that
this individual could literally lay
hands on them and bless them actually
look up to the Lord and say Lord I asked
for your special care and blessings and
these kinds of things wonderful I think
it’s the the essence of this is that
these children are being acknowledged in
the context of their humanity they’re
important they’re important to God
they’re important to the parents and
this famous person that happens to be
with them
Jesus also sees this however the
disciples of Jesus somehow did not see
it the same way and in the context of
the Scriptures themselves I want you to
notice a couple of things here the
disciples seem to be annoyed that the
parents were coming in with their
children in their minds it was a matter
of priority what Jesus was doing at
present with the adults that he was
working with supersedes the importance
of children and therefore the disciples
didn’t just graciously say to the
parents I’m sorry but the master is very
busy right now can you come back at a
later time perhaps the Bible says that
the disciples rebuked them now the basis
of a rebuke is judgment and that is they
had made a moral value judgment here
that what Jesus was doing as he worked
with adults was more important than
spending time with these children and
blessing them according to customs of
the day and therefore they felt
justified and not just turning the
parents down but they felt justified and
speaking harshly
to them and literally rebuking them can
you imagine in our day and time we try
our best to be more congenial but it
seems in that day and time the disciples
were completely convinced that their
value system was in line with Jesus the
master however according to the story
Jesus observed how they were treating
the parents in their rebuke of the
parents and the Bible says that Jesus
said suffered not the little children to
come to me in other words don’t stand in
their way don’t keep them back don’t
send them away
but here is in the context of the story
itself within the original language you
will find that Jesus was perhaps the
right word is livid he was very
emotionally upset with them their
priorities were completely out of line
with God’s perspective and his son the
Lord Jesus Christ so it’s very important
to understand this it’s very important
to see that as Jesus watched his
disciples he became emotionally invested
and therefore he spoke to them with
strong speech and he said don’t you stop
them from coming to me now there’s a
good lesson in this and that is we
should always be inviting we should
always be encouraging children to come
to Jesus we should always be setting up
the opportunities for them to do that
very thing we must ourselves realize
that we are bridges and that we can
bring even children over the bridge to
afer personal faith in Jesus Christ
himself
we should never stand in the way we
should never be a roadblock
we should never forbid children from
coming to Jesus Christ this is the
hortence of that story the priority of
children’s ministry we must look at
children differently in the church and
in our homes and we must recognize that
the calling upon parents especially that
you have been called upon by the Lord
Himself to be spiritual guides spiritual
mentors to your own children and that
God wants you to see this as a great
priority but this is also true of the
church many times churches will say well
we provide for our children because we
have sunday school think about that with
me for just a moment sunday school is
generally on Sunday mornings that’s why
they call it Sunday school it’s for one
hour and somehow we have convinced
ourselves that if we can get children
into Sunday school one hour each week
that’s all that we need to do to make
them disciples who really have
passionate hearts for the Lord and who
will faithfully serve Him all the years
of their lives however research is
telling us that is not nearly enough to
make a disciple requires so much more
time so much more sacrifice but here are
perhaps some attitudes that we could
consider today maybe you have one of
these attitudes that we see concerning
adults and their view of children
attitude number one there are adults out
there who actually think that children
are a bunch of trouble they’re a bother
they’re frustrated with children they
don’t see how children fit in our doing
anything with children has anything to
do with God’s kingdom and the work that
we’ve been called to this is much the
attitude that the disciples had that
triggered this strong reaction
part of Jesus Christ himself you know
truthfully that’s a sinful action you
will find in scriptures that Jesus
became emotionally vested in the
Pharisees who were so self-righteous and
judgmental and condemning that he
himself would often speak very strong
words to them to somehow penetrate that
false religiosity within their hearts
and say so it is with the disciples on
this given day in mark chapter 10 Jesus
was pointing out a terrible
misunderstanding a flaw within their
value systems so I want you to
understand children are so valuable to
God and if they’re valuable to our
heavenly father we need to treat them as
valuable also and we should never see
them as all-together
a bother but something far more in
alignment with what Jesus would have
another attitude that we see and that is
we see children as a tool now this is a
very practical attitude obviously they
aren’t – I often teach that if you want
to build a bridge to many of the homes
in your community as a church start with
the children because when you reach out
and start doing good things with their
kids parents begin to open the doors of
their heart and if you’re bold enough to
build a bridge to them and to make that
connection you will find that adults are
more open to the gospel of Jesus Christ
here’s another attitude that children
are our future
children are the future is that not the
most practical priority that you can
imagine of course they’re our future did
you know that in a few years you will be
old and that you will have to hand that
mantle of leadership over to the next
generation how are you doing in
preparation for that time what are you
doing with the next generation
in making sure that when you hand over
responsibility to them that they are
well prepared that they have passionate
hearts for the kingdom of Jesus Christ
and they will do an even better job in
representing Jesus Christ than you and I
could do that should be our vision and
our passion for our children the very
next generation soon to replace us the
Bible says what is your life
it’s a vapor and like vapor it appears
for a moment and it’s gone we need to
recognize that in Jesus Christ the
bigger picture is eternity the bigger
picture is life beyond this earth but
while we are here on this earth let us
be faithful to our duties and let us
make sure that we are doing an excellent
job in preparing the next generation to
take the gospel of Jesus Christ to the
four corners of this world that we live
in another attitude is simply this that
children are people that are made in
God’s image I really believe that’s
God’s view that when we look at children
don’t speak down to them don’t belittle
them just because they are small and
immature do not think anything less of
them they like you and me have eternal
souls they will live forever and the
Lord is allowing you to pour his truths
into their young lives and that is a
very high and holy calling I think it’s
very important to understand that God
sees children much like he sees adults
in fact God who is ageless he has always
been he will always be think of it this
way from God’s perspective we are all
children and so from our spirit
perspective when you look at the little
children recognize their young adults in
process but while they are in process
why why obey our mayor children
recognize the beauty of how God set all
of this up for you to be his tool of
righteousness so that you can pour his
love his teachings his truths into their
young lives and remember these children
again are like little sponges they can
soak up lots of information so keep
giving them God’s truth and help them to
grow in His grace and knowledge it’s
very important to understand in our
churches and in our families are very
homes children are a priority we must
take the time to see them as God sees
them and when you put on that attitude
of Jesus Christ
like in mark chapter 10 when he
confronted his disciples for the wrong
perspective wrong values wrong attitude
then we ourselves as we have the mind of
Christ we will see children as something
very very special

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