Here's this week's Bible study blog entry for i.ucc!
When Jesus walked the earth, children held little, if any social value. They were necessary as people who would someday grow up and become productive, of course, but until then, children were insignificant – as valuable as trash.
And Jesus took a little child in his arms and said to his disciples, “Whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes not me but the one who sent me."
Today children are talked about, at least, as people of incalculable value and as people who are not only important as future participants in the world, but as participants in life NOW. (I know I am simplifying things far too much. There are too many cases of treating children as if they didn’t matter in our world. The rhetoric may have gotten better, but we’re still a ways away from living up to what we say.)
A comparison with children in Jesus’ time and in our time doesn’t seem fair. So is a view of Jesus actions as only relating to the importance of children fair?
Jesus talked about the ones society saw as insignificant and worthless as those -- as one whose welcome is as significant as welcoming God.
I love how Jesus calls us to treat others with love and acceptance -- regardless of what artificial status or greatness we give them. Jesus calls us to love everyone -- no exceptions.