Written by Barton J. Gingerich |
Sunday, January 8, 2023
It’s not like young people in ages past were sealed off from the “facts of life” (especially since so many more children in those days grew up around livestock). But more Americans are finally seeing that the sexual revolution’s demands—that moral corruptions be legalized, socially endorsed, and even celebrated—have immense costs, and one of them is the corruption of childhood.
The Biblical faith comes with a theology of children. In Genesis, a promised Seed is prophesied to undo the Curse of the Fall. In Exodus, we find God opposing an infanticidal regime and blessing the midwives subverting that regime’s genocide. God’s supreme judgment and mercy climax in the great Passover, which is thereafter memorialized in rituals that involve childbirth and infants.
The Psalter proclaims, “Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings hast thou ordained strength because of thine enemies, that thou mightest still the enemy and the avenger.” When we look at the New Testament, we find a Messiah who bids that little children be brought to Him and blessed, revealing that they are the prototype for any member of the Kingdom of Heaven. And anyone who is a cause of offense for “little ones” (all members of Christ’s flock, but we cannot help but imagine infants and children) is warned, “It were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he cast into the sea.”
Even as we approach Christmas, the themes become all the more explicit. We celebrate the nativity of an infant King. We mourn the martyrdom of the innocents. We even traditionally commemorate St. Nicholas of Myra, the patron saint of children.