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Hebrews 5:11-14 – NT1

04.12.2011

Mark 10:13-16*

Jesus loves the little children,
All the children of the world.
Red and yellow, black and white:
They are precious in His sight.
Jesus loves the little children of the world!

It’s an iconic image of Jesus: sitting down and welcoming the children in His arms.  He also greatly contributes to His image as the ‘softer’ side of the triune God by saying that the Kingdom belongs to such as these and that a man would do well to make himself like a child should he wish to enter the Kingdom.

This is something upon which Chesterton builds much of his worldview, this child-like essence of the Gospel.  From Orthodoxy, three elements:

  1. He argues that it would be better to enter the Kingdom with the intelligence of a child than to enter an insane asylum with a towering intellect.  He says this to further his argument about the madness of excessive rationality vice the bliss and wonder of childhood.
  2. He says that children only need fairy tales as they get older; younger ones are satisfied with just plain old tales.  I paraphrase: a nine-year-old finds wonder and joy in the idea of someone opening a door to find a dragon or magic land; a three-year-old finds that same wonder and joy in the idea of someone opening a door.  It’s a hole in the wall that opens up the magic land that grown-ups call the next room.  Babies don’t need forced romanticism because they find reality exceedingly romantic.
  3. One of his more famous illustrations is about how children, much more than adults, value repetition.  They have energy for the same joke or game over and over and over, until the adult drops from exhaustion.  GK suggests that this hints at the eternal youth of God, who, every morning when the sun comes up and every year when the flowers bloom, kicks His legs and laughs, squealing, ‘Again!  Again!’

So the Kingdom belongs to those who do not pride themselves on containing the universe inside their heads until they crack; you must give up knowledge to gain it.  It belongs to those who see romance and wonder woven into the fabric of reality, seeing in nature the plans of a creator.  And it belongs to those with energy and will to delight over and over in the magic of creation and the joy of God.

————

* A few weeks ago, we did two OT posts and no NT post.  I felt cosmically out of whack ever since, so I’m rebalancing the universe this week with two NT posts and no OT post.  Also, it may have something to do with there being no OT references in this week’s Hebrews passage.

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