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MATTHEW - Repent, for the Kingdom of Heaven is at Hand!
A Bible Study Course on the Gospel of Christ according to Matthew
PART 2 - Christ teaches and Ministers in Galilee (Matthew 5:1 - 18:35)
D - The Unbelieving Jews and Their Enmity to Jesus (Matthew 11:2 - 18:35)
4. Practical Principles of the Kingdom of God (Matthew 18:1-35) -- The Fourth Collection of the Words of Jesus

a) The Disciples’ Pride and the Children’s Humility (Matthew 18:1-14)

MATTHEW 18:5-9
5 Whoever receives one such little child in my name receives me, 6 but whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to stumble, it would be better for him that a huge millstone should be hung around his neck, and that he should be sunk in the depths of the sea. 7 Woe to the world because of occasions of stumbling! For it must be that the occasions come, but woe to that person through whom the occasion comes! 8 If your hand or your foot causes you to stumble, cut it off, and cast it from you. It is better for you to enter into life maimed or crippled, rather than having two hands or two feet to be cast into the eternal fire. 9 If your eye causes you to stumble, pluck it out, and cast it from you. It is better for you to enter into life with one eye, rather than having two eyes to be cast into the Gehenna of fire.
(Matthew 5:29-30; 10:40, Mark 9:42-47, Luke 17:1-2)

Christ loves children, not because of their imagined goodness, but because their souls are open to His every doctrine, example, and guidance. It is certain that children are sinners, stubborn, and prideful as all mankind, but they absorb love and truth and are pleased with the satisfying atmosphere of a healthy family. Whoever adopts an orphan or accepts a needy child, accepts Christ Himself! Whoever teaches salvation in understandable words and simple phrases to little ones plants the seeds of heaven in their hearts. We thank Christ for this unique promise that caused many orphaned children to turn to the care of mothers and fathers in Christ. How great are the blessings flowing out of this merciful promise!

Woe to him who leads a child into sin. Devious behavior results in thousands of sins in future. All those that do such acts are the wicked ones for whom God has determined the sorest punishment, because they were an evil example to little ones. It would be better for them if a millstone were hung around their necks and they were drowned in the depth of the sea, rather than having guided a child into sin, hell, and eternal destruction.

Whatever kindnesses are done to little ones, Christ considers done to Himself. Whoever cares for a meek and humble believer, befriending him, seeking to do him good service, and does it in the name and spirit of Christ, will receive the blessing of Christ. We should do this because we bear His image, having ourselves been adopted by Christ.

The tender regard Christ has for His church extends to every member, not only adults but also to every child. The less church members seek to serve themselves, the more Christ is glorified.

In fact, we are all condemned because we often are indirectly an offense to children. Everyone is responsible for the dirty movies and the shameful magazines. Because of these temptations all of society becomes an offense to little ones. We can not neglect our responsibilities in purifying the children in school and at home.

Christ asks us to sanctify ourselves with the power of the Holy Spirit that we may not cause others to stumble. During this spiritual struggle to sanctify body and soul, the disciples did not cut off hands and legs to escape different temptations, but they devoted their bodies and minds to Christ. They committed themselves as children to the guidance of their heavenly Father. Thus they were protected by the angels of God who loves the lost and repentant.

PRAYER: Heavenly Father, we worship You because You are our Father, and You care for us night and day. We ask You to strengthen our confidence in Your guidance and keep us humble that we may not become a bad example or a cause of sin to children, but walk in holiness and guide the little ones to You. We ask Your forgiveness if we misled anyone by our evil behavior or because of our impurity whether in speech or in act. Lord, save those who we have sinned against, and give them the grace to repent that they may not corrupt others because of us.


  1. What do we learn from Jesus’ sermon about the child whom He set in the midst of them?


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