8. The Children At Play
How the Gospel of God’s
Kingdom Works In Us
The Parable of the Children At Play
(Matthew 11:16-19, Luke 7:31-35).
Watch the 3 minute animated video here.
The text of the message, with scriptures, follows the video.
Jesus says we must become as children to enter the Kingdom of God. But there is a difference between being children and being childish. We must live in reality, not fantasy. As children we are more trusting, believing and dependent on others. Adults become more cynical, jaded and self serving.
Playing is not a bad thing, but here children are depicted as being critical and judgmental, and as creating and living by rules and laws. They are not trusting, dependent and believing in gospel truth. They say, “We played for you and you didn’t dance, — we mourned for you and you did not cry.”
They were creating their own expectancy as to how people should be, and if they didn’t live up to their expectations, they rejected them. This is NOT the way of the gospel. The way of the gospel is that we see everyone as equals (the last parable), and in the love of Jesus.
In John 10:17 Jesus says that the reason Father loves him is he lays down his life for his friends. This can mean his physical death on the cross, but the word life here is ‘psyche’ not ‘bios.’ This isn’t physical life, but rather demands, desires, and expectancies.
This is how we are to relate to others in
the love and grace of the gospel. We are NOT
to relate to others in self created fantasies, where
we impose our expectations and demands
on them! Jesus doesn’t do this to us,
and we are not meant to do it to others.
Jesus goes on to compare himself to John the Baptist. John lived a perfect life before others. Jesus says he liked to drink and eat and have fun. Another place has Jesus saying that no one was greater than John the Baptist, but then he goes on to say that the least person in the new Kingdom of God is greater than John (Mt 11:11).
The gospel of the Kingdom raises us to a new level of responsibility and authority that has never been experienced before (Heb 11:39-40).
Remember: my purpose is not to totally discuss each parable. It is to only
show the gospel in each parable, and how it practically impacts us.
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NEXT: The Parable of the Unprepared Builder