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Daily Reading: 22nd May 2015

John 13.33

33 Children, I am with you a little while. You will look for Me, and just as I said to the Jews, I also say to you now that where I go you cannot come.

In the English language there are a number of ways in which we can speak to one another. When writing a letter, it is customary to begin by using the word ‘Dear’, even if we do not know the person to whom we are writing.

In different localities there are various ways of addressing people, such as: ‘hen’, duck’, ‘me duck’ ‘petal’, ‘sunshine’, etc.

The closer a relationship we have with someone, the more affectionate will be how we address one another, such as ‘sweetheart’ or ‘darling’.

In verse 33 Jesus calls the remaining eleven disciples ‘children’. From our English perspective this may seem as though Jesus was talking down to them. The Greek word literally means ‘little children’. It is obvious that Jesus would not have been meaning that His disciples were literally little children, since they were grown men. The word ‘children’ was often used as a term to express a close, favourable, and kind relationship between a teacher and his disciples.

They had spent nearly three years with Jesus, having been chosen by Him to spend time with Him, learning from Him. They had given up everything to follow Him so that He could teach them to be like Him.

This is the same calling with which Jesus has called all who follow Him. He calls us to learn from Him so that we can be like Him. Therefore, He also calls us His children, because of the close relationship He has with us.

At the same time it is good for us to remember that Jesus said:

[3] “I assure you, unless you turn from your sins and become as little children, you will never get into the Kingdom of Heaven. [4] Therefore, anyone who becomes as humble as this little child is the greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven” – Matthew 18.3-4 (NLT).

Therefore, we must always recognize that the pathway to learning more about Jesus is becoming like a little child, since little children accept all that their parents say.

Today, let us ask ourselves if we always accept what Jesus says. Let us approach God’s word as little children.

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