Introduction: It was a tough time when we left the hospital with our
first born child. When we put the new-born baby in the car seat my
wife was convinced it would kill the baby. I was convinced that if
we did not put our baby boy in the car seat he could die. It was an
unpleasant conversation, and I’m sure the hospital people wanted us
to drive off – which we could not do until we had resolved this
issue. My wife won the debate. On the way home, we thought that the
hospital had given our son some special liquid that we needed to
purchase, but no drug store sold it. Again, we were worried that we
would make a mistake that would harm our baby. No one gave us an
instruction book to consult for these issues. Did you feel that way
with your first-born child? The Bible gives us instructions about
child handling. It does not include car seats, but it is lifesaving.
Let’s plunge into our study of the Bible and learn more!

  1. Giving Children Life

    1. Read Jeremiah 7:30. Which house bears God’s name? (God is
      speaking of His temple. In our last series of lessons we
      learned about the temple sanctuary and how it was central
      for the removal of sin. We learned that the Most Holy
      Place was where God was present.)

      1. What have God’s people done? (They have put idols in
        God’s house.)

    2. Read Jeremiah 7:31. Instead of offering animal sacrifices
      for sin removal, what are the people doing? (Offering
      their children!)

      1. What does God say about this? (It did not even enter
        His mind that such evil should take place.)

      2. Why would such a horrific thing enter the minds of
        God’s people? (They thought that by offering their
        children to be burned in the fire, the gods would
        bless them and make their life better.)

        1. Why do people have abortions these days? (Same
          reason, except the god is not an idol, but it
          is the same god of selfishness.)

    3. Read Jeremiah 7:32-34. What will happen to a nation of
      people who sacrifice their children for their own
      prosperity, who serve gods other than the true God? (They
      lose everything they hoped to gain – including their lives
      and their dignity. Some of the dead are eaten by animals.
      Not a glorious way to end.)

  2. Giving Children a Knowledge of God

    1. Read Deuteronomy 6:1-3. What is God offering here? (The
      same thing the prior group of people sought – a better

      1. What route does God suggest to a better life?
        (Following God’s decrees and commands.)

    2. Read Deuteronomy 6:4-5. What is the first command that God
      gives us? (Read Matthew 22:36-40. The consistent theme in
      both the Old and New Testaments is that we need to love
      God first, and we need to love our neighbors.)

    3. Read Deuteronomy 6:6 and Hebrews 8:10. We see this
      reference to the law being “upon your hearts” or written
      on “their hearts.” What does it mean to have the law
      written on our heart? (It becomes a part of us. It becomes
      a part of our will and our nature.)

    4. Read Deuteronomy 6:7-9. It is common for conservative Jews
      to have a mezuzah, a small container in which is found
      this Bible text, affixed to the door of the house. As you
      consider these verses, what do you think is the sense of
      them? To actually fasten things to your head, hands and
      door? (Perhaps. But, the deeper sense of this is to bathe
      your children with God’s word. The goal is to have God’s
      will in their hearts.)

      1. Is this possible? Will your children rebel and hate
        God if you talk about God all the time?

      2. Let’ change this to television. Bathe your children
        with television. Talk about television in the car,
        when you walk and when you eat. Tie symbols of
        television on your hands and your head. Have a T.V.
        t-shirt. Could you do this? Are you doing this?

      3. What if we changed it to the Internet? Have your
        computer phone on your hands and your head. Wear
        Google glasses. Could you do this?

      4. It may seem impossible or impractical to bathe our
        children with God’s law, but Satan has surely
        accomplished this with his messages. When my children
        were still living with us I recall thinking how I
        needed to steer the conversation to God’s will. That
        was a challenge.

    5. Read Deuteronomy 6:20. Have you been asked this question
      by your children? Have you been asked, why is that
      important? Why should I worry about God’s rules? What
      difference does it make?

    6. Read Deuteronomy 6:21-24. What parallel response can you
      give to your children? (Talk about your history with God.
      Tell them how walking with God gives life and prosperity.
      Do they want to succeed in life? Obey God!)

      1. Of all the missed opportunities I had to talk about
        God with my children, one area in which I succeeded
        was that we would read the Bible in the evening. We
        started with the New Testament and then went to the
        Old Testament. I would choose an easy to read version
        of the Bible, the children would take turns reading,
        and we would discuss what we read. It was enjoyable.
        Are you willing to do this?

  3. Welcoming Children

    1. Read Matthew 18:1-4. If you have spent a lot of time with
      children, do you think they are humble? (Hardly! Children
      are selfish – just like the disciples who wanted to be

      1. Needless to say, this is the Bible and our Lord is
        speaking, so we can hardly say, “That’s wrong!” What
        do you think Jesus means? (Children had no status in
        life compared to the adults. The disciples were
        looking for status over each other. Jesus tells us
        that we should not be fighting for status.)

    2. Read Matthew 18:5. How is this logically connected to the
      verses we just read? (You might prefer to spend your time
      being with people who will give you more status. But,
      Jesus says that spending time with children “in [Jesus]
      name” is unequaled in importance.)

      1. What practical point can you draw from this? (We
        certainly need to welcome children in church. We need
        to be sure that programs for children are created and
        adequately staffed.)

      2. What will children think if they show up for Sabbath
        School and the teacher is not there? Will they feel

    3. Read Matthew 18:6. How important is our influence upon

    4. Read Matthew 18:7. Have you ever heard someone say, “Well,
      if I didn’t sell [something harmful to children] someone
      else would?” Does Jesus admit that someone will be there
      to bring harm to children? (Yes. “Such things must come.”)

      1. What does Jesus say about the excuse “if I don’t do
        it someone else will?” (He says that is no excuse.
        “Woe to the man.”)

    5. Read Mark 10:13. What do you think is the object of having
      Jesus touch the little children? (Parents were looking for
      a blessing on their children.)

      1. Why do you think the disciples rebuked the parents?
        (They probably thought Jesus had more important
        things to do.)

    6. Read Mark 10:14. How did Jesus react to the disciples’
      rebuke? (He was indignant. The Greek reflects deep
      emotion. Jesus was very unhappy.)

      1. Does that seem to be an over-reaction? (No! We need
        to understand this: Jesus put a very high priority on
        welcoming children!)

    7. Read Mark 10:14-16. Recall that in Matthew 18:4 Jesus said
      that we need to become like little children to enter the
      Kingdom of Heaven? Now Jesus says that we must “receive”
      the Kingdom of Heaven “like a little child” or we cannot
      receive it at all? What does this mean? How would a little
      child receive the gospel? (Children may have many
      character flaws, but one universal trait of children is
      simple trust.)

      1. How improved would your life be if you showed simple
        trust in God?

    8. Friend, we need to make children a high priority in our
      home and in our church. We need to do everything we can
      to lead them in the right path, and not lead them astray.
      Will you commit to make a special point of this? Perhaps
      you will be rewarded with a more child-like attitude, one
      of simple trust!

  4. Next week: Discipling the Sick.