Enter the kingdom as a child

Jesus said we should receive the kingdom like a child. Many people believe it means we should believe like a child does - without question - but what did Jesus really mean?

Believe like a child does?

It is not about just blindly trusting like a child does. Just think how many children really believe in Santa Claus and the tooth fairy. Jesus taught us to question, investigate, look for the truth and not just follow the crowd.

It is not about having a blind gullible trust.

What did Jesus mean?

Mark 10:15
Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.
First lets look at what the kingdom is.

Although there is a definite future aspect to the kingdom of God, it is also here and now (Luke 17:20-21), inside of us and around us (Gospel of Thomas, Saying 3).

It is not just about getting into heaven - it is about here and now. How we experience life, God and His power in our lives.

The nice thing about being a parent is you get to do all the cool stuff all over again - going to the zoo, camping - even watching a movie is not the same when you watch it with kids. They are so in the moment, so full of awe and appreciation.

We need to have more joy, be more grateful, be more in the moment, see life as an adventure. Children does not walk around full of anxiety because of deadlines and bills. They can enjoy life because Mom and Dad will take care of them.

We need to do our part - God is not in the business of raising lazy, helpless dependants - but we are never alone - we have a Father that loves us.

The Old Testament was all about religion - about an angry God that was inaccessible. Jesus came to change that - He came to change our view of God - God is a loving Father - God is MY Father.

Matthew 18:1-11
1 At that time the disciples came to Jesus and asked, “Who, then, is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?”
2 He called a little child to him, and placed the child among them. 3 And he said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. 4 Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.
Becoming a child is not just about how we see life and trust in our Father - it is also how we see others and ourselves in relation to others.

Have a look at children playing - they are not concerned about race or social status. They do not walk around with a sense of self-importance.

Gospel of Thomas, Saying 46:
Jesus said, "From Adam to John the Baptist, among those born of women, no one is so much greater than John the Baptist that his eyes should not be averted.
But I have said that whoever among you becomes a child will recognize the (Father's) kingdom and will become greater than John."
What God wants is not a lot of 'important people' doing 'important stuff' for Him - He wants children. Happy, playful, whole (healthy) children - they are the ones that will change this world. They are the ones that will enter His kingdom.

You must make the two into one

This article is part of a series where we are looking into what Jesus meant when He said we should 'make the two into one'. As you will discover in the rest of the articles, the principle of making the two into one has many layers and applications.

The principle of making the two into one is linked to several other principles in the Bible. In this article we are looking at one of them - becoming a child. In the Gospel of Thomas the saying with the two must become one starts with becoming an infant.

Gospel of Thomas, Saying 22:
Jesus saw some babies nursing. He said to his disciples, "These nursing babies are like those who enter the (Father's) kingdom."
They said to him, "Then shall we enter the (Father's) kingdom as babies?"
Jesus said to them, "When you make the two into one, and when you make the inner like the outer and the outer like the inner, and the upper like the lower, and when you make male and female into a single one, so that the male will not be male nor the female be female, when you make eyes in place of an eye, a hand in place of a hand, a foot in place of a foot, an image in place of an image, then you will enter [the kingdom]."
Jesus started by saying we should be like nursing babies and when His disciples questioned Him about it. He then explained what it really means.

We start off in life in awe as we experience new things every day. We are in the moment and not concerned about bills or what others think of us  - but then we grow up. We start to compare ourselves with others - we become unhappy with who we are, how we look, the work we do, how much money we make, ...

We become unhappy with our self, we begin to judge others and we start to become unhappy with others. We become divided in ourselves and we become separated with others.

Jesus explained that being like an infant means making the two into one - becoming whole again.We should not be divided in ourselves and we should live in unity and love with others.

Gospel of Thomas, Saying 37:
His disciples said, "When will you appear to us, and when will we see you?"
Jesus said, "When you strip without being ashamed, and you take your clothes and put them under your feet like little children and trample them, then [you] will see the son of the living one and you will not be afraid."
Adam and Eve lived unashamed - but then things changed. We started to live in judgment of others and ourselves.

If you really want God to reveal Himself to you - become like a child that has no shame, that does not feel condemned (Romans 8:1), that does not feel judged and that does not judge others (Matthew 7:1).

Accept how God made you - live unashamed and free.

Jesus linked 'making the two into one' two becoming like a child. It has to do with how we live - how we see God, ourselves and others.

Gospel of Thomas, Saying 4:
Jesus said, "The person old in days won't hesitate to ask a little child seven days old about the place of life, and that person will live. 

More on making the two into one


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