What do you think when you read a verse like this one:
Matthew 18:3 (KJV) 3 And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.
I know in my past I was “strongly encouraged” to REPENT!!! and be a better person. Others might say that you need to stop thinking like an adult because adults can’t believe in God stuff since it is the thing of miracles and “you know those things can be explained by science…” Some would say that the innocence of a child is what we need because we are just mean, terrible sinners as grownups. I don’t think any of that is right. Let me show you why. Check out the same verse in the AMP with the following verses:
Matthew 18:3 (AMP) 3 And said, Truly I say to you, unless you repent (change, turn about) and become like little children [trusting, lowly, loving, forgiving], you can never enter the kingdom of heaven [at all]. 4 Whoever will humble himself therefore and become like this little child [trusting, lowly, loving, forgiving] is greatest in the kingdom of heaven. 5 And whoever receives and accepts and welcomes one little child like this for My sake and in My name receives and accepts and welcomes Me.
I think the key word is “humble.” We have all sorts of notions about what it means to humble ourselves. I believe God’s definition of humble is “it is not about you.” When we are living from our self, selfish nature, own thinking, acting INDEPENDENT, we are living from the flesh. When we are living from the Spirit we are like children, completely DEPENDENT on God, living a life in Christ.
Romans 8:14 (GNT) 14 Those who are led by God’s Spirit are God’s children.
It is time we surrender, completely. God intended a DEPENDENT relationship. Independence is eating from the wrong tree. Jesus died so we can go back to eating from the right tree, the tree of life.
Galatians 2:20 (ESV) 20 I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.
Matthew 16:25 (ESV) 25 For whoever would save his life[a] will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.
1 Corinthians 1:30 (AMP) 30 But it is from Him that you have your life in Christ Jesus, Whom God made our Wisdom from God, [revealed to us a knowledge of the divine plan of salvation previously hidden, manifesting itself as] our Righteousness [thus making us upright and putting us in right standing with God], and our Consecration [making us pure and holy], and our Redemption [providing our ransom from eternal penalty for sin].
You know it is hard work to be independent, but the adult mind, trained by the world wants to be in control. Can you imagine a small child fending for itself? Can you imagine a 5 year old out working for a living, scrounging for food, looking to other children for comfort? Sounds silly doesn’t it? God intended for us to be like the 5 year old in dependent relationship with Him. Yes He gives us the mind of Christ and we are being transformed by the renewing of the mind and we have available the wisdom of Go, but the moment WE think WE have it figured out, WE have become INDEPENDENT. Independence is a balloon filled with water trying hard to get to the next peak (Balloons). A child of God living like a dependent child is living moment to moment completely dependent on God and trusting Him in all things and for all things. That is awesome! That is Grace! That is what God intended. That is a balloon filled with air and carried by the wind of the Spirit.
Come on. Yay Jesus!
Oh yeah, check out this passage as well:
John 21:4-6 (ESV) 4 Just as day was breaking, Jesus stood on the shore; yet the disciples did not know that it was Jesus. 5 Jesus said to them, “Children, do you have any fish?” They answered him, “No.” 6 He said to them, “Cast the net on the right side of the boat, and you will find some.” So they cast it, and now they were not able to haul it in, because of the quantity of fish.
The Greek word for Children is Paidion, same as Matt 18:3. Pretty cool.