Ask a question - Don't question the answer.
Mark 10:13-31 from the daily reading in the One Year Bible
And they were bringing children to Him so that He might touch them; but the disciples rebuked them. 14 But when Jesus saw this, He was indignant and said to them, “Permit the children to come to Me; do not hinder them; for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. 15 Truly I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child will not enter it at all.” 16 And He took them in His arms and began blessing them, laying His hands on them.
17 As He was setting out on a journey, a man ran up to Him and knelt before Him, and asked Him, “Good Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” 18 And Jesus said to him, “Why do you call Me good? No one is good except God alone. 19 You know the commandments, ‘Do not murder, Do not commit adultery, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Do not defraud, Honor your father and mother.’” 20 And he said to Him, “Teacher, I have kept all these things from my youth up.” 21 Looking at him, Jesus felt a love for him and said to him, “One thing you lack: go and sell all you possess and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.” 22 But at these words he was saddened, and he went away grieving, for he was one who owned much property.
23 And Jesus, looking around, said to His disciples, “How hard it will be for those who are wealthy to enter the kingdom of God!” 24 The disciples were amazed at His words. But Jesus answered again and said to them, “Children, how hard it is to enter the kingdom of God! 25 It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” 26 They were even more astonished and said to Him, “Then who can be saved?” 27 Looking at them, Jesus said, “With people it is impossible, but not with God; for all things are possible with God.”
28 Peter began to say to Him, “Behold, we have left everything and followed You.” 29 Jesus said, “Truly I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or farms, for My sake and for the gospel’s sake, 30 but that he will receive a hundred times as much now in the present age, houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and farms, along with persecutions; and in the age to come, eternal life. 31 But many who are first will be last, and the last, first.”
In today’s text Jesus says: “Permit the children to come to Me; do not hinder them; for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. Truly I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child will not enter it at all.” Often, when we think of what Jesus said, we think of the faith of a child; that they believe without doubting. Certainly childlike faith is an attribute that we should have. We should believe and not doubt what God has promised in His word. We should believe and not doubt that Jesus died for our sins. We should believe and not doubt that we are empowered to live righteously through the Holy Spirit. We should believe and not doubt that we are called and commissioned to be those who share the good news of the kingdom of God with the world. All of these things and more are ours as God’s children. Romans 8:15-17 says: You have received a spirit of adoption as sons by which we cry out, “Abba! Father!” The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him so that we may also be glorified with Him. To enter the kingdom of God as a child, is to walk in this world as an heir, a fellow heir of Christ, having all the same privileges, promises, power and authority He had and has.
If we are to be like children, then we should know that it is okay to ask questions of God. There is a difference between questioning and doubting. Children constantly ask questions; what, why, how, when and where. Asking questions is instrumental to learning. If we approach God and His kingdom as children, we too then should ask questions when we don’t understand. God has no problem with us if we ask a question. The problem is when we question an answer. James 1:5-6 says: If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all generously and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But he must ask in faith without any doubting. We ask to learn, to gain wisdom. If we doubt what we are told, James 1:6-8 continues: The one who doubts is like the surf of the sea, driven and tossed by the wind. For that man ought not to expect that he will receive anything from the Lord, being a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways. When we question God’s answer, we become unstable and we should not expect that we will receive anything from the Lord. To enter the kingdom of God as a child is also to walk in obedience to the Father, neither doubting, or questioning Him.
There is an aspect of being God’s child and an heir with Christ which many people are not willing to accept or believe. In Romans 8 it says: We are children of God, and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him so that we may also be glorified with Him. It seems contrary to what Jesus says in John 10:10, “I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly” that we should suffer with Him. Just as it is critical that we know the difference between asking God a question and questioning God’s answer, it is important that we understand that we suffer with Christ, not for Him. Jesus did all the suffering for us on the cross. He paid the price for our sins. He died so we don’t have to. He suffered so we don’t have to. We though need to identify with His suffering. We need to believe in what He did. Suffering with Christ is not continuing to pay the price, rather it is identifying with Him. Jesus is no longer on the cross and He is no longer in the grave. Jesus is resurrected and is with the Father. If we suffer with Christ, we are glorified with Him. We too are with Him and the Father. Ephesians 2:4-6 says: God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus.
In today’s text it says: Peter began to say to Him, “Behold, we have left everything and followed You.” Jesus said, “Truly I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or farms, for My sake and for the gospel’s sake, but that he will receive a hundred times as much now in the present age, houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and farms, along with persecutions; and in the age to come, eternal life. But many who are first will be last, and the last, first.” We should not question what Jesus says. There will be persecution that comes with following Him. There will be a giving up of some of the things of this world. Jesus says: “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me. For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it; but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it. For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?” (Matthew 16:24-26) In John 16:33 Jesus says: “These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” With Christ, through the cross and the resurrection, we too, have overcome the world. We too overcome all the persecution and tribulation, as children of God and heirs of His kingdom.
Thank You heavenly Father, Lord Jesus Christ and precious Holy Spirit for all that You have given me, in the kingdom of heaven as Your child and heir, both now and forever. Amen.