Picture it. Jesus INVITES children to Him. He looks at them as passionately as He looks at brokenness. He loves them and adores their childlike faith in Him.
Immediately following the lesson of “whoever comes to Me like a child”, another important lesson is taught to those of long time faith…Don’t trip up new believers in Me with childlike trusting faith! If you do, things will not go well for you! Read on…He is serious!
Causing to Stumble
6 “If anyone causes one of these little ones—those who believe in me—to stumble, it would be better for them to have a large millstone hung around their neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea. 7 Woe to the world because of the things that cause people to stumble! Such things must come, but woe to the person through whom they come! 8 If your hand or your foot causes you to stumble, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to enter life maimed or crippled than to have two hands or two feet and be thrown into eternal fire. 9 And if your eye causes you to stumble, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to enter life with one eye than to have two eyes and be thrown into the fire of hell.
THINK ABOUT IT
We are pretty sure Jesus is talking to the religious elite who have added so many man-made as an addendum to God’s Law that the people are oppressed and burdened. People run from those who say they know God when they don’t know Him at all. People are hurt and sometimes crushed by words not helpful to their spiritual growth.
But Jesus is also talking to us who are “lifers” in His church who can be so judgmental that the same oppression can be felt by fragile new believers who ask questions about growing in their faith but only get answers that have to do with man-made rules and regs of what “we have always done at this church”. This is a stumbling block to real growth in the characteristics of God while growing more in love with Jesus who died and rose again for us. It’s almost as if the Good News is followed by bad news of “you must be like us”. Yikes.
What am I thinking, saying or doing that might be a stumbling block to new believers with childlike faith who want to walk with Jesus?
Dear Heavenly Father,
I have experienced stumbling blockers in my own life. Help me not to be one!
In Jesus Name, Amen