28 And GOD blessed them. And GOD said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”
(Genesis 1, 28)
A large family was considered a great blessing in ancient Israel. Children are one of the ways GOD rewards faithful followers:
3 Children are a heritage [gift] from the LORD, offspring a reward from Him.
4 Like arrows in the hands of a warrior are children born in one’s youth.
5 Blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them. They will not be put to shame
when they contend with their opponents in court.
(Psalm 127, 3-5)
Hannah, who was barren, had made a promise to GOD that if she bore a son, she would give him back to GOD’s for service (Nazir). When she gave birth to Samuel, Hannah handed her young child over to Eli for training as a priest. GOD blessed Hannah further for honoring her pledge to Him. She bore three more sons and two daughters:
“I prayed for this child, and the LORD has granted me what I asked of him. So now I give him to the LORD. For his whole life he will be given over to the LORD.”
(1 Samuel 1, 27–28 NIV)
GOD’s praise is chanted by the angels above and even by the lowliest baby:
You have taught children and infants to tell of your strength, silencing your enemies and all who oppose you.
(Psalm 8, 2)
9 He gives the barren woman a home, making her the joyous mother of children. Praise the LORD!
(Psalm 113, 9)
6 When she opened it, she saw the child, and behold, the baby was crying. She took pity on him and said, “This is one of the Hebrews’ children.”
(Exodus 2, 6)
The importance of passing on traditions to the new generations by means of oral recitation during moments dedicated to family unification.
19 You shall teach them to your children, talking of them when you are sitting in your house, and when you are walking by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise.
(Deuteronomy 11, 19)
6 And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart.
7 You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise.
8 You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes.
9 You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.
(Deuteronomy 6, 6-9)
GOD, the divine Creator, knows his little ones intimately:
You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb.
(Psalm 139, 13)
8 Listen, my son, to your father’s instruction and do not forsake your mother’s teaching.
9 They are a garland to grace your head and a chain to adorn your neck.
(Book of Proverbs 1, 8-9)
17 Discipline your son, and he will give you rest; he will give delight to your heart.
(Book of Proverbs 29, 17)
The mystery of new life proves that human beings cannot understand the will of GOD and the ways in which operates. It is better to have faith and leave everything in the hands of the Creator:
He who observes the wind will not sow; and he who regards the clouds will not reap.
Just as you cannot understand the path of the wind or the mystery of a tiny baby growing in its mother’s womb, so you cannot understand the activity of GOD, who does all things.
(Ecclesiastes 11, 4-5)
GOD our Redeemer forms his children in the womb, He knows us intimately and cares for us personally:
Thus says the LORD, your Redeemer, who formed you from the womb: “I am the LORD, who made all things, who stretched out the heavens alone, who spread out the earth. Who was with me?
25 who frustrates the omens of liars, and makes fools of diviners; who turns wise men back, and makes their knowledge foolish;
26 who confirms the word of his servant, and performs the counsel of his messengers; who says of Jerusalem, ‘She shall be inhabited,’ and of the cities of Judah, ‘They shall be built, and I will raise up their ruins’;
(Isaiah 44, 24-26)
14 Therefore, the LORD, of His own, shall give you a sign; behold, the young woman is with child, and she shall bear a son, and she shall call his name Immanuel.
(Isaia 7, 14)
“I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb. Before you were born I set you apart …”
(Jeremiah 1, 5)
19 Arise, cry out in the night, as the watches of the night begin; pour out your heart like water in the presence of the LORD. Lift up your hands to Him for the lives of your children, who faint from hunger at every street corner.
20 “Look, LORD, and consider: Whom have you ever treated like this? Should women eat their offspring, the children they have cared for? Should priest and prophet be killed in the Sanctuary of the LORD?
21 “Young and old lie together in the dust of the streets; my young men and young women have fallen by the sword. You have slain them in the day of your anger; you have slaughtered them without pity.
22 “As you summon to a feast day, so you summoned against me terrors on every side. In the day of the LORD’s anger no one escaped or survived; those I cared for and reared my enemy has destroyed.”
(lamentation 2, 19-22)
This verse leads us to recognize the value of all believers, even the smallest child has the attention of the angels of the FATHER:
“Beware that you don’t look down on any of these little ones. For I tell you that in heaven their angels are always in the presence of my heavenly FATHER.”
(Matthew 18, 10)
One day people began to bring their little children to Jesus to bless and pray for them. But the disciples rebuked the parents, telling them not to disturb the Master, but Jesus became displeased with his followers:
13 Then children were brought to him that he might lay his hands on them and pray. The disciples rebuked the people;
14 but Jesus said, “Let the children come to me, and do not hinder them; for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.”
15 And he laid his hands on them and went away.
(Matthew 19, 13-15)
33 They came to Capernaum. When he was in the house, he asked them, “What were you arguing about on the road?”
34 But they kept quiet because on the way they had argued about who was the greatest.
35 Sitting down, Jesus called the Twelve and said, “Anyone who wants to be first must be the very last, and the servant of all.”
36 He took a little child whom he placed among them. Taking the child in his arms, he said to them, 37 “Whoever welcomes one of these little children in my name welcomes me; and whoever welcomes me does not welcome me but the one who sent me.”
(Mark 9, 33-37)
The little children and Jesus:
13 People were bringing little children to Jesus for him to place his hands on them, but the disciples rebuked them.
14 When Jesus saw this, he was indignant. He said to them, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of GOD belongs to such as these.
15 Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of GOD like a little child will never enter it.”
16 And he took the children in his arms, placed his hands on them and blessed them.
(Mark 10, 16)
Jesus took a child in his arms, not as an example of humility, but to represent the small and insignificant ones whom followers of Jesus are to receive:
Then he put a little child among them. Taking the child in his arms, he said to them, “Anyone who welcomes a little child like this on my behalf welcomes me, and anyone who welcomes me welcomes not only me but also my FATHER who sent me.”
(Mark 9, 36–37)
This passage summarizes the first twelve years of Jesus’ youth:
And the Child grew and became strong in spirit, filled with wisdom; and the grace of GOD was upon Him.
(Luke 2, 40)
38 And Peter said to them, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.
39 The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the LORD our GOD will call.”
(Acts 2, 38-39)
Children are GOD’s good and perfect gifts from above:
Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the FATHER of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.
(James 1, 17)
1 Children, obey your parents in the LORD, for this is right.
2 “Honor your father and mother”—which is the first commandment with a promise—
3 “so that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.”
4 Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the LORD.
(Ephesians 6, 1-4)
Qur’an, Surah Al – Ahqaf, 46
وَوَصَّيْنَا الْإِنسَانَ بِوَالِدَيْهِ إِحْسَانًا حَمَلَتْهُ أُمُّهُ كُرْهًا وَوَضَعَتْهُ كُرْهًا وَحَمْلُهُ وَفِصَالُهُ ثَلَاثُونَ شَهْرًا حَتَّى إِذَا بَلَغَ أَشُدَّهُ وَبَلَغَ أَرْبَعِينَ سَنَةً قَالَ رَبِّ أَوْزِعْنِي أَنْ أَشْكُرَ نِعْمَتَكَ الَّتِي أَنْعَمْتَ عَلَيَّ وَعَلَى وَالِدَيَّ وَأَنْ أَعْمَلَ صَالِحًا تَرْضَاهُ وَأَصْلِحْ لِي فِي ذُرِّيَّتِي إِنِّي تُبْتُ إِلَيْكَ وَإِنِّي مِنَ الْمُسْلِمِينَ
Dua for Parents and the Believers
Qur’an, Surah Nuh, 71, 28
رَبِّ اغْفِرْ لِي وَلِوَالِدَيَّ وَلِمَن دَخَلَ بَيْتِيَ مُؤْمِنًا وَلِلْمُؤْمِنِينَ وَالْمُؤْمِنَاتِ وَلَا تَزِدِ الظَّالِمِينَ إِلَّا تَبَارًا
This verse is recited in the Qunoot of Salaat Hadiyan-e-Walidain.
151 Say, “Come, I will recite what your LORD has prohibited to you. [He commands] that you not associate anything with Him, and to parents, good treatment, and do not kill your children out of poverty; We [GOD] will provide for you and them. And do not approach immoralities – what is apparent of them and what is concealed. And do not kill the soul which GOD has forbidden [to be killed] except by [legal] right. This has He instructed you that you may use reason.”
152 And do not approach the orphan’s property except in a way that is best until he reaches maturity. And give full measure and weight in justice. We do not charge any soul except [with that within] its capacity. And when you testify, be just, even if [it concerns] a near relative. And the covenant of GOD fulfill. This has He instructed you that you may remember.
153 And, [moreover], this is My path, which is straight, so follow it; and do not follow [other] ways, for you will be separated from His way. This has He instructed you that you may become righteous.
(Qur’an 6, 151-153)
“It is He Who has created you from a single person (Adam), and (then) He has created from him his wife Eve, in order that he might enjoy the pleasure of living with her. When he had sexual relations with her, she became pregnant and she carried it about lightly. Then when it became heavy, they both invoked their Lord (saying), “If You give us a child, good in every aspect, we shall indeed be among the grateful.”
(Quran 7, 189)