Adults can learn a lot from children. Just watch young siblings interact sometime. One will start to do something and the other will say, “Mommy said not to do that!” Or there will be a disagreement and one will go to a parent and come back pronouncing the solution to the disagreement with a sentence beginning with “Daddy said…”
Children usually understand that they ought to do what their parents say to do, and that they should not do what their parents say not to do. Children also understand that they do not have the right to give one another permission to do things. Admittedly, children don’t always bother to get permission from parents, but they usually know that they should.
Children are humble enough to know that they are permitted to do something only if Mommy or Daddy “say so.” They KNOW that they are not in charge. This attribute of children is part of what Jesus was wanting from all of us when he said, “Assuredly, I say to you, unless you are converted and become as little children, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore whoever humbles himself as this little child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 18:3-4).
Children of God need desperately to realize that we are only permitted to do something if our heavenly Father says so.
Many passages of scripture teach the need for children of God to rely upon His “say so”. Balaam recognized this need in Numbers 22:18 when he told the messengers from Balak that “Though Balak were to give me his house full of silver and gold, I could not go beyond the word of the LORD my God, to do less or more.” Colossians 3:17 requires that “whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus.” In Proverbs 30:6 the wise man said, “Do not add to His words, lest He rebuke you, and you be found a liar.” Yet, despite these scriptures and others which could be cited, we continue to hear those who are supposed to be God’s children claim that “we do (or can do) many things for which we have no authority.” This is tantamount to saying, “God did not say so, but we are going to do it anyway!”
This attitude explains a lot that’s going on among churches and in the lives of Christians today, doesn’t it?
May God help us to develop a true child-like humility. Before we give ourselves permission to follow our own desires, let us all stop and ask, “Did God say so?”
— Steve Klein