God’s Instruction. God makes it very clear that we instruct children so they may be prepared to lead a life that is productive and glorifies Him (Exodus 18:20; Proverbs 22:6). He calls His people to join Him in this, sharing His passion for children and bringing to each child the love of Jesus Christ in both word and deed (Is 1:17; Jms 1:27; Mt 25:40).
Proverbs 22:6 Train a child in the way he should go, and even when he is old, he will not turn away from it.
Exodus 18:20 You must instruct them in the laws and teachings, show them how to live and tell them what to do.
Responsive Love. To act upon God’s call to care for children is not merely a matter of duty or reaction to need. It is first a response to Gospel: the loving Father who sought us, adopted us, and invites us to live as His sons and daughters (Ps 127:3; Mt 19: 13-14; Mk 10:16; 1 Jn 2:
Psalms 127:3 Children are an inheritance from the Lord. They are a reward from Him.
Matthew 19:13-14 Then some of the people brought little children to Jesus to have Him bless them and pray for them. But the disciples told the people not to do that. Jesus said, “Don’t stop children from coming to me! Children like these are part of the Kingdom of God. Mark 10:16 Jesus put His arm around the children and blessed them by placing His hands on them.
1 John 2:14 I’ve written to you, children, because you know the Father. I’ve written to you, fathers, because you know Christ, who has existed from the beginning. I’ve written to you, young people, because you are strong and God’s word lives in you. You have won the victory over the evil one.
Commitment to the Whole Child. To meet only spiritual or only physical needs of a child is incomplete (1 Jn 3:17; Jms 2:16). Christian love seeks to address both. Even a cup of water given to quench the momentary thirst of a child is of eternal value (Mt 10:42). So, just as in the ministry of Jesus, we should always hold together the meeting of physical need with
the Gospel and our hope that every child will know God’s love deeply and personally.
1 John 3:17 Now, suppose a person has enough to live on and notices another believer in need. How can God’s love be in that person if he does not bother to help the other believer?
James 2:16 and one of you tells that person, “God be with you! Stay warm, and make sure you eat enough.” If you do not provide for that person’s physical needs, what good does it do?
Mt 10:42 I can guarantee this truth: “Whoever gives any of my humble followers a cup of cold water because that person is my disciple will certainly never lose his reward.”