Matthew 18:10

New Testament

8 If your hand or your foot causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to enter life crippled or lame than to have two hands or two feet and be thrown into eternal fire. 9 And if your eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it away. It is better for you to enter into life with one eye than to have two eyes and be thrown into fiery hell. 10See that you do not disdain one of these little ones. For I tell you that their angels in heaven always see the face of my Father in heaven. 12 What do you think? If someone owns a hundred sheep and one of them goes astray, will he not leave the ninety-nine on the mountains and go look for the one that went astray? 13 And if he finds it, I tell you the truth, he will rejoice more over it than over the ninety-nine that did not go astray.

2 Baruch 48:19

Syriac Apocalypse of Baruch

17 What therefore is our strength that we should bear Thy wrath Or what are we that we should endure Thy judgement? 18 Protect us in Thy compassions, And in Thy mercy help us. 19 Behold the little ones that are subject unto Thee, And save all that draw nigh unto Thee: And destroy not the hope of our people, And cut not short 'the times of our aid. 20 For this is the nation which Thou hast chosen, And these are the people, to whom Thou findest no equal. 21 But I will speak now before Thee, And I will say as my heart thinketh.

 Notes and References

"... The 'little ones' are most certainly not children in the biological sense.7 Some exegetes, patristic (e.g., Chrysostom, cited above) as well as modern, have thought of a special category of disciples—those whom fellow-Christians are likely to despise as socially inferior, spiritually distraught, recently baptized, etc. Matthew's two little ones' and those admonished not to despise them—may also be part of a rhetorical strategy to address the entire church. Even though 'the saying calls for some elasticity, it may have been a pejorative term, used originally by the adversaries of the Jesus-movement, and later embraced by Christians ... the uneducated 'people of the land,' whose conflict with the Pharisees becomes acute after 70 CE, correspond to the 'the little ones' in the Gospels. This interpretation renders void the objection that the Aramaic or Greek never designates a disciple as such, but rather a disciple lacking maturity. It is interesting, however, that 2 Baruch, a text dated to the early decades of the second century, and presumably written in Palestine, use 'the little ones' as a designation for the people of Israel (2 Bar. 48:19). A. F. J. Klijn even lists Matthew 18:10 as a relevant parallel to 2 Baruch 48:19 ..."

Bucur, Bogdan G. Matthew 18:10 in Early Christology and Pneumatology: A Contribution to the Study of Matthean 'Wirkungsgeschichte' (pp. 209-231) Novum Testamentum, Vol. 49, 2007

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