13 People were bringing little children to Jesus for him to place his hands on them, but the disciples rebuked them. 14 When Jesus saw this, he was indignant. He said to them, "Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. 15 Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it." 16 And he took the children in his arms, placed his hands on them and blessed them.
Prayer: Lord, give me grace to be concerned about the least among us- those who are helpless or dependent.
John Calvin abridged: This narrative is highly useful for it teaches us that Christ not only receives those moved by a holy desire and faith come to him, but also those who are not old enough to know they need his grace. The children may not know that they need his blessing- but when they come to him, he gently and kindly receives them and dedicates them to the Father. The laying on of hands was an ancient and well-known sign of blessing. Since the inferior are blessed by the better (Heb. 7:7), the parents ascribe to him the office of prophet and show they believe he may dispose the Spirit of God and His gifts upon their children.