Matthew 19:13

ESV Then children were brought to him that he might lay his hands on them and pray. The disciples rebuked the people,
NIV Then people brought little children to Jesus for him to place his hands on them and pray for them. But the disciples rebuked them.
NASB Then some children were brought to Him so that He would lay His hands on them and pray; and the disciples rebuked them.
CSB Then little children were brought to Jesus for him to place his hands on them and pray, but the disciples rebuked them.
NLT One day some parents brought their children to Jesus so he could lay his hands on them and pray for them. But the disciples scolded the parents for bothering him.
KJV Then were there brought unto him little children, that he should put his hands on them, and pray: and the disciples rebuked them.

What does Matthew 19:13 mean?

Jesus is on His way to Jerusalem, but He is taking the long way around to get there. He is likely in Perea at this point, east of the Jordan River. Large crowds have been coming to Him for healing, and a group of Pharisees has been testing Him. Now some people have brought children to Jesus to lay His hands on and pray for them.

It's not surprising that any parent would want Jesus to bless their children, no matter who they thought Jesus to be. Perhaps, though, this was not a normal activity. The disciples decide that it is time to step in and move things along. They rebuke the people bringing the children to Jesus. It may be that the disciples did not see this blessing of children as an urgent need in comparison with the healing of the sick or maybe they were just trying to protect Jesus' time and energy.

Children in the Jewish society were deeply cared for, but they had no social standing. Their place was to learn and to serve, but not to get in the way. Jesus will correct the disciples and allow the people to continue to bring the children to Him.
What is the Gospel?
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