“Out of the mouth of babies and infants, you have established strength because of your foes, to still the enemy and the avenger.” – Psalm 8:2 ESV
Here is yet another of those biblical phrases which has become a saying in our language! Have you heard people say, “From the mouths of babes…”? In everyday use, this often means simply that a child has said something funny. It’s a more stylish form of “Kids say the darn’dest things.”
But when the psalmist first wrote these words, he was reflecting on the way that God often uses the seemingly weak and insignificant to make the “strong” and “wise” look silly. A child who takes the Name of God on their lips in simple trust has much more strength than all the armies, wealth and fame of the world.
Jesus himself quoted this verse, at a time when children in the Temple were shouting out their praises to him (Matthew 21:16). The chief priests wanted Jesus to hush their noisy enthusiasm. But Jesus would not silence them: he saw strength in children praising his Name.
We should never despise the simple faith of a child, who can say, “Jesus loves me; this I know, for the Bible tells me so.” We adults think we’re clever because with our science, philosophy and life experience, we can be more “nuanced”. But nuance is sometimes overrated.
Jesus is the Lord. He made us, he is good, he loves us, and he died to save us. We should praise him, thank him, trust and obey him. We should do what his word says, rather than doing what we dream up. These are simple truths that a child can understand, and there is great strength in a person – of any age! – who lives by them.
Father, thank you that your gospel is easy to understand, and that there is great strength in the simple faith of a child. Please give me that same faith to trust and obey the Lord Jesus, who loved me and died for me. Amen.