Mark 10:16 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Mark 10:16, NIV: "And he took the children in his arms, placed his hands on them and blessed them."

Mark 10:16, ESV: "And he took them in his arms and blessed them, laying his hands on them."

Mark 10:16, KJV: "And he took them up in his arms, put his hands upon them, and blessed them."

Mark 10:16, NASB: "And He took them in His arms and began blessing them, laying His hands on them."

Mark 10:16, NLT: "Then he took the children in his arms and placed his hands on their heads and blessed them."

Mark 10:16, CSB: "After taking them in his arms, he laid his hands on them and blessed them."

What does Mark 10:16 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

"Bless" is from the Greek root word eulogeo. It can mean to praise or celebrate, or to consecrate something or someone, to acknowledge that ultimately, only God can work for their benefit. It is in the latter sense that the parents offer their children to Jesus. As a spiritual teacher with a large following, He honors their children by praying over them.

In Judaism, the people are separated from a direct relationship with God, with the priests as intermediaries. The parents consider Jesus a religious leader who is closer to God than they. In the church age, those of us who are indwelt by the Holy Spirit have direct access to God. Jesus' death literally ripped the veil between the Temple proper and the Holy of Holies where God met the priests (Matthew 27:51). This access is available to our children, as well. But parents still have a mysterious place in their children's lives, and our relationship with God can reflect on our kids (1 Corinthians 7:14). God gives every parent the important and honorable duties of praying for and about our children, asking His blessings on them, and drawing them to a relationship with Him.

Jesus doesn't teach the disciples—or us—without example. He doesn't stand in the synagogue and tell people what they should do without lifting a finger to help like the scribes and Pharisees (Matthew 23:2–4). He walks in and shows how to serve (John 13:3–15), honor His mother (John 19:26–27), and sacrifice for others (Mark 15:22–37). That is why Paul tells us to take Jesus' humility and understanding of purpose as the example for our lives (Philippians 2:4–11). Here, He takes time away from His march to Jerusalem and the cross to show love to the least of these. As parents, we must prioritize our kids like He does.