13 ¶ Then were there brought unto him little children, that he should put his hands on them, and pray: and the disciples rebuked them.
13 Verse 13. Then were there brought unto him little children]
These are termed by Luke, Lu 18:15,
ταβρεφη, infants, very young children; and it was on this
account, probably, that the disciples rebuked the parents,
thinking them too young to receive good. See on Mr 10:16.
That he should put his hands] It was a common custom among the
Jews to lay their hands on the heads of those whom they blessed,
or for whom they prayed. This seems to have been done by way of
dedication or consecration to God-the person being considered as
the sacred property of God ever after. Often God added a
testimony of his approbation, by communicating some extraordinary
influence of the Holy Spirit. This rite has been long practised
among Christians, when persons are appointed to any sacred office.
But this consecration of children to God seems to have grown out
of use. It is no wonder that the great mass of children are so
wicked, when so few, are put under the care of Christ by humble,
praying, believing parents. Let every parent that fears God bring
up his children in that fear; and, by baptism, let each be
dedicated to the holy trinity. Whatever is solemnly consecrated
to God abides under his protection and blessing.