Friday, July 16, 2010


"He tends his flock like a shepherd: He gathers the lambs in his arms and carries them close to his heart; he gently leads those that have young."- Isaiah 40:11

This verse – written by the prophet Isaiah some 500 years before Christ – is a prophetic look at the Messiah who would come to set people free and bring salvation to every Nation.

The prophecy is fulfilled in The Gospel of Mark when Jesus allowed the children in the crowd to come to him. The full text says,

"People were bringing little children to Jesus to have him touch them, but the disciples rebuked them. When Jesus saw this, he was indignant. He said to them, "Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. I tell you the truth, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it." And he took the children in his arms, put his hands on them and blessed them." - Mark 10:13-16

There are several key things to notice in the passage above. First, that the Disciples (sometimes referred to as the "Duh-Sciples"), didn't get it. They wanted to keep Jesus from the nuisance of children. Instead, Jesus grew angry and not only did he allow them to come near, he used this as an opportunity to teach us something about the Kingdom.

Great teachers around this time in history were often found blessing children. Greek philosophers enjoyed blessing the youth of their day, but here Jesus does something that none of the others ever did. He took them into his arms and held them in his lap, and he loved them.

All other teachers who blessed children did so from a distance, but Jesus allowed them to come near enough to embrace. He held them in his arms. He carried them close to his heart.

I had never before noticed that the passage in Isaiah was fulfilled by this scene in the Gospel of Mark. I had missed that the prophetic verse referred to a shepherd who would gather the lambs in his arms. Lambs are the children of the sheep.

This passage also shows us that Jesus had a heart for women as well. It says, "He gently leads those who have young", showing his compassion for women who care for children every day.

Most striking in the verses from Mark is the comment made by Jesus that "anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it". He doesn't say that it will be hard for those who do not receive the kingdom like a child. He says they will never enter it. Never.

To receive the kingdom of God like a child is to submit totally to the Master. It is to crawl into his lap and to trust him, to let him bless you, and to obey his words because you take comfort in his love for you.

Let the Lord Jesus take you into His arms today. Let Him embrace you, and let Him bless you with His presence.

You are so loved.

Originally posted March, 2007

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