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May 10: Descending Into Greatness (Matt 18:1-5)

Adult Education

This Sunday Brandon Jordan will continue a series on theology in the youth room at 9:00am addressing the God of the covenants and what our redemption tells us about God. Ray Rutledge will be in the Adult 1 classroom continuing through The Gospel Project addressing the kindness of a God who chooses to save.


Matthew 18:1-5

[1] At that time the disciples came to Jesus, saying, “Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” [2] And calling to him a child, he put him in the midst of them [3] and said, “Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. [4] Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. [5] “Whoever receives one such child in my name receives me," (ESV)


Sermon Summary

Jesus, still in Capernaum, continues instructing his followers in the nature of discipleship. He teaches all his followers that greatness begins in a downward journey. In other words, you descend into greatness in God's kingdom. What better way to teach the importance of humility among his people than by using a little child. Jesus, the consummate communicator, places a little child into the midst of his apostles, his chosen leaders to whom he has given authority, power, and position and says, "Unless you turn and become like this child, you cannot enter the kingdom of heaven. Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom." It quickly becomes clear that the values of this kingdom are upside down from the kingdom of men. How counter-cultural is the church!


Review and Apply

  1. How do we define greatness in this culture?
  2. How are children viewed today? How were they viewed in the first century?
  3. What characteristics do children have that reveal the nature of discipleship?
  4. Why is humility and dependence necessary for entrance into the kingdom of heaven?
  5. What evidence do you have of being a "child"?
  6. How can your brother or sister pray for you to grow in this way?
  7. How do you receive another person in Jesus' name?