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Contract On Children

Part I: Children:
Our Example of Christianity

by Winkie Pratney

This begins a series on a very sobering and disturbing subject. The contract on children is not new. It's a war that's raged throughout the ages - even against the whole concept of childhood. This first part lays a solid Biblical foundation for us to evaluate the loss, and to sense the urgency of the times. We believe this series will be as eye-opening and challenging for you as it has been for us.

- Melody Green

I think every Christian would agree that children today are under attack. As Christians we usually focus on one or two problem areas, but I believe there's a much broader problem we often miss. What we're seeing happen today is the result of a general contract that's gone out against our children - aimed to pervert and destroy the whole idea of childhood.

Jesus made some pretty radical statements. One of them was, "I assure you, unless you are converted and become like little children, you will certainly not enter the kingdom of heaven." (Matt. 18:3) To become converted is radical enough, but how do you become like a little child?

In Mark 9, Jesus takes a child in His arms and says, "Whoever receives one child like this in My name receives Me." Then in Mark 10:13 it says, "And they were bringing children to Him so that He might touch them; and the disciples rebuked them." Imagine. As the children tried to come to Jesus, the disciples got out their baseball bats and said, "We're going to protect the Master from undue interference from little people. Let's get rid of these kids!" And Jesus, rebuking them, puts a little child in their midst and shocks them by basically saying, "Unless you become like him you're not going to make it. You can't be My followers!"

Characteristics Of Children

What are some of the characteristics of childlikeness - not childishness - that Jesus may have had in mind when He used the illustrations He used concerning children? Let's look at some of the qualities we find in children.

Children have a simple faith. They implicitly believe what a reliable authority tells them, without argument or debate.

Children are full of trust. They bring out whatever real care and compassion there is in an adult's heart. (Prov. 3:5-7)

Children have a freshness - a brand new approach to looking at life. Have you ever taken a little kid out and shown him something he's never seen before? It's neat just to watch him. Parents who've seen horses and butterflies a thousand times before just plod along saying things like "Hurry up!" But little kids get to totaly engrossed with simple everyday things.

About 15 years ago a survey was conducted to study people throughout history who'd been called geniuses: the Michelangelos, the Leonardo Da Vinci types, and the Einsteins. They examined their childhood, their education, and when possible, measured their intelligence quotients - analyzing what constituted genius. What was interesting was not all of them had a significantly higher IQ than the average smart person. Their IQ wasn't the prime common factor. The common factor was their ability to look at everything as if they'd never seen it before - to see it in a totally new light. They could look at something other people had seen a thousand times and make connections between it and other things, then come up with an incredible breakthrough somewhere. In other words, a genius has the ability to see as a little child would see.

Another quality children have is the ability to forgive quickly. It's not easy for them to hold a grudge. "And be kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ also has forgiven you." (Eph. 4:32)

Children are not afraid to ask questions all the time. They are perpetually curious, constant learners. (Luke 10:21)

Children are hero-worshippers. It is the easiest thing in the world for them to look up to someone and try to be like them. (Eph. 5:1)

Children have a natural humility. Their meekness is the unselfconscious knowledge that they're only little and have much to learn from someone bigger, wiser, and stronger than they are. They know they're just little kids. (Matt. 18:4)

Unspoiled little children are unsophisticated. They have not yet learned to be jaded or cynical. As a young boy, Joseph had some incredible prophetic dreams about his - and his brothers' -future! Can you imagine how uncool it was for Joseph to tell his dream to his brothers? Imagine going up to your older brothers and saying, "Hey, guess what? I had a dream last night. There was the sun and the moon and the same number of stars as you guys, and you were all bowing down to me! How do you like that?" It's recorded that they did not like it! See Genesis 37:5-11. Little kids are uncool. They're the opposite of a valley girl.

And yes, despite the Fall, there is a relative innocence. Have you ever looked into a baby's eyes? It's unspoiled landscape. They're not yet alive to all the ugly things the adult world has constructed for children. Unhurt children are joyful. They enjoy little things tremendously and laugh a lot.

Children are loving. They find it natural to hug and cuddle and throw themselves into their parents' arms. "For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father" - which means "Dearest Daddy." (Rom. 8:15)

Children are playful. They spend a huge amount of time just playing. It's the primary way they develop and learn. Some of the best motivational teachers in industry and business say play is one of the best ways to develop creativity and problem-solving.

Children enjoy a unique simplicity. They live in an uncomplicated, direct-approach world. Children live, love, laugh, play, and rest without complexity. (Luke 18:17)

Children are zealous. Whatever they do, they "do it with all their might." (Col. 3:23)

Children live in a world of absolutes. Things are either right or wrong, good or bad. They have not learned the meaning of the word "compromise." (1 John 3:7-10) Children can also be tactless. They say what they see and see no reason to make things any different from what they really are. Bill Gothard calls them "God's little spies." I have a younger sister named Vonny. When we were little my mother owned a dress shop. Her best customers were those who were rather stout, because they needed to buy more material for their custom-made dresses. One day mother sat Vonny on the counter while she rushed out to make a cup of tea, and told her to let her know if anybody came in. So in comes this upper-class lady and my little sister, with her Shirley Temple type curls, yells in a voice that could be heard all over Manurewa, "Mommy, there's a big fat lady here in the shop!" I don't remember if mother lost a customer or not, but she never left Vonny on the counter alone again!

Children: Our Living Example

Childhood is a constant rebuke to our failure to be like God. It is a universal witness to the heart of Christ in the world. Little children are God's ongoing witness of His kingdom - a perpetual reminder of what it means to belong to the Father. Children are an unspoken sermon in every home for simplicity, joy, and humility of that which makes the world worth living in. They remind us what it means to be a real Christian.

So, what does God want a Christian to look like? Forgiving. Trusting. Knowing how much we need to learn. Living in a world of clear right and wrong. Full of joy, faith, and love. Fresh every morning. Wholehearted. Looking at everything like it has never been looked at before. Playful. Simple and direct. And at the end of the day totally relaxed in rest. Is this what adults even Christian adults look like today? No wonder God hallowed childhood.

But, what will happen to the world if it loses childhood?

Are We Still Sacrificing Our Children?

I've listed some of the qualities of childlikeness, but what happens when these quartiles are perverted?

What happens when you pervert hero worship? If we insert the demonic into hero worship we get things like Dungeons and Dragons. Even the cartoons today revolve around the supernatural. Every little kid in the world loves their hero. They pattern themselves after them. They dress like them and talk like them. The music industry, for example, has stolen the place that belongs properly to Deity - so have sports figures and movie stars. When we see the abuse of things like this, we're looking at the stealing of an in-built childlikeness that was designed by God.

Why do you think God designed little kids to be hero-worshippers? It's especially strong around the Junior High School age. (Remember when you fell desperately in love with your English teacher?) For me it was Superman and Batman. I believe God's pattern was to develop hero worship through the family. Little children are supposed to look up to relatives, especially their mothers and fathers, and begin to model their lives after them. That's why they dress up like them and play grown-up. When a family gives their children a true picture of God, kids can really get excited about knowing Him and worshipping the right Person.

So what has the world done? It's seen a huge potential. Its name is Greed and it gets in there and turns fallen people into idols - it captures our music and games and cartoons. Take for instance, the best-selling movie of all time - E.T. I mean who in the world would love a little creature like E.T. and want to take him home? This thing is worse-looking than a frog but he's been treated like God and made to look like a little Christ. That's why you'll find over 32 direct references or parallels to Christ's life in the first E.T. movie. E.T. creates, heals, and brings life wherever he goes. His adopted mother's name is Mary, and when he dies the clock records it at 15:35 military time which is 3:35 P.M., the approximate time Jesus died. E.T. also rises again - and will return because he's promised to; the next movie will be his Second Coming.

Let's look at some of the other opposites of childlike qualities.

The opposite of acceptance is skepticism - a characteristic of our age.

The opposite of humility is pride and arrogance.

The opposite of trust is distrust or fear. Fear is the opposite of faith. It's the devil's equivalent of faith. Satan gets the same mileage out of fear as God gets out of faith. In order for Satan to accomplish things, he must develop fear in people's lives.

What about dependence? It becomes independence. By the way, an independent spirit is the first fundamental step in any deception. Do you want to be deceived? It doesn't start with your doctrine. It doesn't even start with your character. It starts with your spirit - with a heart-attitude of independence from God. From there it moves to your character and begins to show up in your morals. Finally, it moves to your understanding and affects your message - what you say and teach. Most of the time when we look for deception, we look for what a person believes. But a wrong attitude or spirit is actually the first sign of deception. Does someone have a servant's heart or an independent heart? When you see somebody with an independent spirit, they're already deceived and on their way to something worse.

What's the opposite of honesty? Deceitfulness. Not telling the truth anymore. This is where the prophet's edge gets cut out of society. We're too afraid we might offend somebody so we alter things. Here's one of Jesus' speeches to some religious and business dignitaries. They came to take a few notes because they heard He might have something significant to say. His opening statements went something like this: "You all remind me of corpses that nobody has had a chance to bury yet. You stink!You are a bunch of snakes, a generation of vipers on your way to hell. And thank you very much for inviting me." That's not exactly out of your How to Win Jews and Influence Greeks book. It's not your basic "How to Get in Solid Favor" message. But Jesus did that all the time. Right when people were eating lunch with Him He'd say things like, "You pretender! You hypocrite!"

Children have a naturalness about them. When that's perverted life becomes artificial, forced, and ugly. There's nothing more horrible than a nine year old posing on the streets because he's a male prostitute. There's something absolutely alien about it. A child that isn't a child - a child that's 50 years old inside the eye sockets. There's something totally awful about that because it's so unnatural.

In The Last Days

Most of us are familiar with the prophecy in Chapter Two of Joel which promises the Holy Spirit will be poured out on all mankind. Do you remember who's to be the special receivers of this outpouring? The sons and the daughters. A generation was made to know that this work of the Holy Spirit would begin with their children. The young men will see visions and the old men will dream dreams. So there's the old - and the new prophetic edge that's coming. There will also be an outpouring among people known to be servants - both male and female. On the day of Pentecost, Peter said, "But this is what was spoken through the prophet Joel." (Acts 2:16-21)

In Joel Chapter Three there's a description of the society that exists when this outpouring takes place. "They have a/so cast lots for My people, traded a boy for a harlot, and sold a girl for wine...."(vs. 3) That phrase speaks of child prostitution. God brings a judgment on these nations. Their own children suffer a judgment they bring on themselves.

Then in Joel 3:6 it continues, "The children also of Judas and the children of Jerusalem have ye sold unto the Grecians, that ye might remove them far from their border." Here we have children sold to Greece. What do we know about Greece? First of all, the Greeks were the top philosophers of their time - their philosophy much like Eastern thought. Secondly, as it collapsed, there was widespread homosexuality in Greece. As they began to fall you can see the change in their statues - from very strong, militant, father-of-the-family images to more and more effeminacy as the nation began to sell itself into sodomy and lesbianism. As these children were sold their sexual purity was not the only thing destroyed their minds went as well.

Unfortunately, what went on in Greece sounds very much like what's happening today.

Most of us are aware that children today are subjects of terrific abuse from many sources. A young girl who was sexually abused by her father from the age of six stated brokenheartedly, "I feel like a trash can." And one of the most major abuses we're familiar with is abortion - over a million and a half a year in America alone. Loren Cunningham recently said, "The safest place to be in this country, per population group, is on Death Row." Statistically, there's less chance of you getting killed on death row than there is in any other population group. In contrast, it's also been said that the most dangerous place to be on earth is in your own mother's womb.

Forget the Greeks. That's good old American civilization in the 1990s.

History Repeats Itself

Twice before in Biblical history there have been contracts put out on children. The neat thing is, both times there was supernatural protection - and believing parents who intervened.

Once there was a mad king named Pharaoh who realized the significance of Israel's impending multiplication. Knowing what might happen, he put a contract out on their first-born males just when Moses was about to be born.

Can you imagine? Pharaoh ordered the Israelites to take their newborn males and throw them in the river. So Moses' parents did precisely that. However, looking for creative alternatives, they put him in a little boat before they threw him in! I believe it was guided by God's hands, believing prayer, and parents who trusted God and were not afraid to defy a death threat from a king. And you know the incredible circumstances...

Pharaoh, busy with the affairs of the state, didn't have time to check up on what his daughter was into. She was out taking a bath in the river when this little boat came along, pushed by God's hand of destiny. God parked it directly in front of her and woke up baby Moses. Pharaoh's daughter looked and said, "Oh! It's a baby!" So she went to her father and said, "Dad, I've got this baby. Can I keep him?" Now I don't know what Pharaoh thought. "Boy, I should take better care of my daughter. She's got a baby and who knows where it came from? I don't want to ask questions. "Fine. Keep him. You know, I've got the world to run." So Pharaoh's daughter kept the child. Of course, she needed a nurse to take care of him since she was probably still a teenager. Looking around, she saw a young girl who'd followed the boat. "Can you help me?" she asked, "I need a nurse." The girl replied, "Oh, I know a lady who'd be like a mother to him." So she went and got Moses' mother, who then raised him in the palace of the king. The same king who had put the contract on his life. This is more 007 than you could ever imagine! In the palace of the killer king arises the deliverer. Pharaoh put the contract out on the children, but the one that got away was the one that ended up doing him in.

At that time there was a great deal of occult activity. Remember when Moses returned years later and confronted Pharaoh? Pharaoh's magicians made their rods turn into snakes too. That level of magic didn't just happen overnight. There was a high-level psychic technology developed where people began to manipulate nature by occult forces. And it was into that magic culture that a whole new race of children began to grow up.

The second time a contract was put out on children was under King Herod. His astrologers all knew something really weird was going on. This was when the three wise men saw signs in the sky and entered Jerusalem saying. "Where is He who has been born King of the Jews? For we saw His star in the east, and have come to worship Him." (Matt. 2:2) When Herod heard about it he said, "King of the Jews? What do you mean? Where is He so I can go worship Him too." Herod realized there was a baby boy who was going to be King of the Jews. This meant his job would be up for grabs. Another slaughter. This time it was all the male children under two.

Herod had put a contract out on the children - but remember believing parents? In this case Joseph and Mary were warned by an angel to flee. (Matt. 2:13-15) They went to Egypt. Egypt? I mean, good night, Egypt was where they killed all those babies the first time! But Jesus escaped, returned to Galilee, and grew up in Nazareth - again the Deliverer although despised and rejected by men. Again, the One that got away was the One that did them in.

The Greatest Attack Ever

Whenever children are born at a critical time in history, strange, supernatural things seem to go on in that culture. And people in high places know it. When those things take place, it's in the demonic world that Satan puts out the contract on children.

But why?

In the records of the Bible each time a mass destruction of children fell on the world, a KEY LEADER was about to be born. Moses, Jesus - a deliverer was coming, and hell was afraid. As we've seen, the mass murder of children is not a new idea.

The contract is out again. It has come in our time, and it has come for our children. What does that say to us? What can we learn from this awful slaughter? We must ask ourselves: What is there about this generation that makes Satan so afraid? What does he see or sense coming that has triggered such an awful holocaust?

In the times of Moses and the Lord Jesus, that rage missed its marks. The targets of that destruction escaped each time. And the ones that got away did untold damage to hell's domain. There is something precious and important about this generation, so deeply under attack.

It may well be the last generation before Jesus returns.

It may have among its ranks of survivors the makings of a major spiritual miracle.

There may be leaders-to-be rescued from the sword that will lead an entire generation of the abandoned, loveless, and lonely into the promises of God.

I believe that the children being born today are part of a whole prophetic generation God is bringing forth, and that's why the enemy is trying to destroy them in any way he can - both physically and mentally. In the demonic realm the contract has gone out - and the contract on children today is greater than ever before in history. Much, much greater.

Where Have All The Children Gone?

Childhood itself is under attack - not just children, but the whole idea of childhood. If childhood, with all its God-designed qualities, vanishes in society, how do you get a comparison of what you're supposed to be like when you get saved? Remember the words of Jesus: "Unless you are converted and become like little children, you will certainly not enter the kingdom of heaven." (Matt 18:3)

What happens to a society when there aren't any little children anymore - when all you have are 50 year olds living inside of nine-year-old bodies?

The answer is simple. You have a society that becomes immune to conversion.

Winkie Pratney, 2/21/2007