The Little Children

by Jesse Lyman Hurlbut

WHILE JESUS was still passing through the land of Perea, on his way to Jerusalem, at one place the fathers and mothers brought their babies to him, asking him to place his hands on their heads and speak upon them a blessing. When the disciples saw them doing this, they were not pleased.

"Take these babies away!" they said. "The Lord is too busy with greater things to attend to them!"

But Jesus heard them, and he was displeased, not with the parents and their children, but with his disciples.

"Let the little ones come to me," he said, "and do not stop them; for the kingdom of God comes only to those who are child-like. I tell you, whoever will not give himself up to the kingdom of God as a little child shall never come into the kingdom."

Then he took the little ones up into his arms, laid his hands upon them and gave them his blessing. After that he went away from that place.