For Theirs Is the Kingdom
Inclusion and Participation of Children in the Gospel according to Luke
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Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield
Number of Pages: 280
Width: 16 cm
Height: 23.1 cm
Images of Jesus blessing the little children adorn churches and Sunday Schools across the globe. However, many readings of the gospel accounts flatten the presence of children into just a handful of scenes such as this ubiquitous blessing, suggesting that the presence of children among the early followers of Jesus was the exception rather than the rule. In contrast, historical evidence suggests that the first century Jewish and Greco-Roman cultures in which the Christ movement began were themselves teeming with children who had important roles to play in their families, religions, and society. This book re-reads Luke's gospel account in light of these historical realities, with children at the center. By closely interrogating the role and presence of children among the followers of Jesus as presented in Luke's gospel account, the author suggests that parallel to the culture and society of its time, Luke's gospel account can be read to reflect the rich presence of children throughout. By reading Luke's gospel account through this childist lens, this volume sheds new light both on traditional scenes highlighted as including children and on Luke's gospel account as a narrative whole. This childist reading of Luke's gospel account seeks to (re)member the child followers of Jesus by drawing out instances of their acceptance and participation in the Kingdom of God as normative. Through the lens of child disciples, this book (re)imagines discipleship in Christ's church more generally, with a value for interdependence at its core.