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Act Like a Child?

Act Like a Child?

For people who prefer to think of themselves as intelligent, competent, and self-reliant (which is just about all of us), the following words of Jesus likely come as a shock: “Whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it” (Mk.10:15). No one likes to be considered childish, and yet there it is, a statement of absolute disqualification from even becoming a Christian unless we share similarity to a child. 
 
Of course, there are many aspects of childishness the Bible calls us to renounce (e.g. 1Cor.14:20). Yet, when it comes to “entering the kingdom” there has to be that kid-like dependence, trust, and submission. This insight may help us understand the struggles we face when we are attempting to persuade our accomplished, self-made and self-assured friends to put their trust in Christ. It may even help us rethink our own testimony, if our “conversion story” sounds more like a season of “figuring it all out” or “advancing our lives to the next level” instead of, as Paul put it, counting whatever we had gained as loss (Phil.3:4-9). 
 
A sense of helplessness and utter need for salvation is at the heart of what it means to truly repent and put our faith in Christ. As humbling as that may feel, Jesus was clear that it is a necessary prerequisite for joining God’s people in the kingdom.

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