Thursday, April 30, 2015

Lesson - Introduction To The Book Of Acts

VERSES:  Acts 1:1-3

MEMORY VERSE:  Acts 1:1  "...all that Jesus began both to do and teach."

BOOK TO REMEMBER:  Zechariah.  Write "Zechariah" on small slips of paper and hand out to the students at the end of class, so they memorize another Old Testament book at home. We are almost through memorizing the Old Testament book. It might be a good idea to sing "The Books Of The Old Testament" (see The Books Of The Old Testament  - March 2014 - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #3 on this blog. Click on orange circle to hear tune.)

PRAYER:  Let us pray for others around the world who are also studying from the same bible that we are. While we are studying in a peaceful time, they may not be, so let us keep them in our prayers.

SPECIAL SONG:   Read, Read Every Day (see February 2014 - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #1 on this blog. Click on orange circle to hear tune.)

VISUAL AID:  Write "The Book Of Acts" on the whiteboard or chalkboard. Also, a large activity (see below).

  • The fifth book of the New Testament is called "Acts." The book of "Acts" is short for "The Acts of the Apostles." It is the only New Testament book that tells about the establishment and the history of the church and the things that the apostles did during that time. This book is written by a doctor named Luke who also wrote the Gospel of Luke. Luke was not an apostle, but he was a follower or a disciple of Christ. The book of Acts begins right where Luke's Gospel stops--with Jesus ascending or going up into heaven. 
  • Luke addressed both the Gospel of Luke and the book of Acts to his friend, Theophilus. In the book of Luke, Luke told all that Jesus did and what He taught up to the point where He was taken up into heaven. The book of Acts continues the story and tells how Jesus continued to show Himself alive to others for forty days after He died on the cross, and how Jesus spoke about things concerning the kingdom of God. In Acts, Luke tells how the church began, how people were added to the church, and how the apostles went around to many countries and cities and preached about Jesus.
  • Later in the book of Acts, we find that Luke actually traveled around with the Apostles because, as he writes, he changes the word "they" to "we." Luke was with the Apostles as they traveled from city to city (Acts 16:10). Luke accompanied the Apostle Paul on many of his journeys. We will be studying many exciting lessons from this historical book of Acts.
"Older Student" Tips:
  • It is interesting to notice that Luke mentions 32 countries, 54 cities, 9 Mediterranean islands, 95 people (62 people of which are not named anywhere else in the Bible), including Augustus, Tiberius, Claudius Caesar, the Herods, Felix and Festus. Everything Luke mentions is historically correct compared to today's history. He made no mistakes and the cities, people, etc. can be proven that they existed by other books that were written, besides the Bible.
ACTIVITY:  The Book of Acts
Materials needed:  five 6" x 9" pieces of different colored construction paper, crayons, stapler, staples.

  1. Hand out one piece of paper. This is the cover.
  2. Write, "The Book of ACTS" on the cover.
  3. Turn page over. Write, "5th book of the New Testament."
  4. Hand out another piece of paper.
  5. On one side, write, "Written by Luke who was a doctor."
  6. Turn paper over. Write, "Acts begins where the Gospel of Luke stops--with jesus going up into heaven."
  7. Hand out another piece of paper.
  8. On one side, write, "Acts is a letter Luke writes to his friend, Theophilus."
  9. Turn paper over. Write, "Acts tells how the church began."
  10. Hand out another piece of paper.
  11. On one side, write "Acts tells how people are added to the church."
  12. Turn paper over. Write, "Acts tells about the history of the church.
  13. Hand out another piece of paper. This is the back cover. 
  14. On one side, write, "Everything in the book of Acts is true. 2 Timothy 3:16, 17."
  15. Nothing is written on the back side of the paper.
  16. Put pages in order. (Numbers may be written as the pages are written or when everything is done, if desired.)
  17. Staple book.
  18. Read before leaving classroom.

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Words Of Encouragement #21 - A Greater Appreciation

For the past fourteen lessons, we have been studying about Jesus' life, death, and resurrection. Let us examine ourselves for a moment as 2 Corinthians 13:5 encourages us to do. 
  • Have we, as Bible teachers, learned anything new through this study? 
  • Have we re-learned 'old' things and now have a better grasp on the details? 
  • By studying a harmony of the Gospels (which only means we have taken all four of the Gospels--Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John--and have combined all the accounts on a certain event to get the whole picture), can we see through more enlightened eyes?
  • Do we have the right attitude as we study and learn?
Studying God's Word is never a waste of time or energy. We are never too young or too old to read and study God's Word. Reading the Bible keeps our minds alive, so we can distinguish right and wrong, good and evil (Hebrews 4:12), produces more faith (Romans 10:17), and gives us a greater appreciation for the beauty of God's Word and the power of His might (Ephesians 1:18-20). 

Reading in Psalms 119, we find a great chapter in this Old Testament book that teaches what our attitude should be towards God's Word. 
  • Are we hiding God's Word in our heart and meditating on it throughout the day (verses 11, 15)? 
  • Are we turning away from the vanity of this life and turning to God's Way (verse 37)?
  • Do we love God's laws (verse 97)? Are they sweet to our taste (verse 103)?
  • Are we using God's Word as a lamp to guide us along our journey in this wicked world (verse 105)?
  • Do we desire understanding (verse 130)? 
  • Do we stand in awe of God's Word (verse 161)?
So, how is our attitude? Do we grumble about the next week's lesson or do we look forward to opening up the Bible, having a greater appreciation of God's Word as we study? May we cling to God's Word and find great comfort the more that we read. 

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Lesson - More Appearances of Jesus After His Death

VERSES:  Luke 24:50-53; John 20:24-31; 21-1-25

MEMORY VERSE:  John 20:28  "...My Lord and My God."

BOOK TO REMEMBER:   Haggai.  Write "Haggai" on small slips of paper, so the students may memorize another Old testament books at home.

PRAYER:   Thank God for His Word which we can read and know that Jesus is the Son of God and that He died for our sins.

SPECIAL SONG:   No, Not One (see June 2014 - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #6 on this blog. Click on orange circle to hear tune.)

VISUAL AID:   Large Activity (see below)

  • After Jesus had risen from the grave, we remember that He appeared to His disciples on that evening of the first day of the week. While they were gathered together, He stood in the middle of them and showed them His hands and his side, proving that it was really Jesus who had risen from the grave. His disciples believed that it was Him, but there was one disciple who was missing and that was Thomas. The other disciples had told him that they had seen the Lord, but Thomas did not believe them. He said that unless he saw the nail prints in His hands, put his finger in the nail prints, and put his hand into Jesus' side, he would not believe. 
  • Eight days later, Jesus' disciples were again gathered together and this time Thomas was with them. The doors were shut, but Jesus appeared in the middle of them, and said, "Peace, be to you." Then He turned to Thomas and said, "Reach with your finger and look at my hands. Put your hand here in my side. Don't be without faith, but believe." Thomas believed and said, "My Lord and my God!" Jesus talked to Thomas and said to him, "Thomas, you have believed in Me because you have seen Me. Blessed are those who have not seen Me, and yet believe."
  • Jesus performed many other miracles in front of His disciples which were not written down (John 20:30, 31), but the reason that all of those things were written down, were to persuade people to believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God and, that if they believe in Him and obey His Will, they might have eternal life.
  • Another time, Jesus appeared at the Sea of Tiberias where Peter, Thomas, Nathanael, James, John, and two other disciples were together. Peter told them that he was going fishing. The others said that they would go with him, so they immediately got inside a ship. They fished all night, but caught nothing. In the morning, the disciples saw someone standing on the shore. They didn't know it was Jesus! Jesus called to them, "Have you caught anything?" They said that they hadn't. Jesus then told them to cast or throw their net on the right side of the ship and they would find fish. They threw their net down on the right side of the ship and there were so many fish that they were not able to pull the net up! John instantly said to Peter that the person on the shore was Jesus. He threw his fisherman's coat to Peter and threw himself into the sea. Because they were not far from the shore, the other disciples came in a little ship, dragging the net with fishes. When they got to the shore, they saw a fire of coals and fish and bread were cooking on it. Jesus told them to bring the fish that they had caught. Peter drew the net up to land and it was full of fish! 153 fish, but the net was not broken! Jesus told them to come and eat. No one asked Jesus who He was because they all knew it was Jesus who gave them fish and bread. This was the third time that Jesus appeared to His disciples after He had risen from the dead.
  • After they had eaten, Jesus said to Peter, "Do you love Me more than these?" Peter replied, "Yes, Lord. You know I love you." Jesus said to him, "Feed my lambs." Jesus again said to Peter, "Do you love Me?"  Peter again replied, "Yes, Lord. You know I love you." Jesus said to him, "Feed my sheep."  For the third time, Jesus asked Peter, "Do you love me?" Peter was grieved and saddened that Jesus had asked three times if he loved Him. Peter said, "Lord, You know all things. You know I love You." Jesus said to him, "Feed my sheep." Later, Peter would be the one who would be the first gospel preacher in Acts 2. Peter would be teaching the people or what Jesus had said "feeding the sheep."
  • Soon after, Jesus led the disciples out as far as Bethany, lifted up His hands and blessed them. While He was blessing them, He parted from them and was carried up into heaven. The disciples worshiped Him and returned to Jerusalem with great joy and happiness! What did Jesus' disciples do after that?  They were continually in the temple, teaching the people and praising and blessing God.
"Older Student" Tips:
  • There is a phrase, "doubting Thomas"; this is where that phrase comes from.
  • In the book of John, John refers many times to "the disciple whom Jesus loved," but never reveals his name. John tells us at the very end of his book who this disciple is. Read John 21:24 for the answer! It was himself--John, the one who wrote the book.
ACTIVITY:  "Feed My Sheep!"
Materials needed:  6" x 18" light green construction paper, scraps of dark green and tan paper,crayons, scissors, tape.
  1. Hand out green paper.
  2. Fold green paper in half.
  3. Fold paper in half again. There should be four panels.
  4. Fold last panel in opposite direction on fold line. This will form a box later.
  5. Unfold paper.
  6. Trace lines.
  7. On one side, number the first three panels, #1, #2, #3.
  8. In PANEL #1: write, "Peter, do you love Me?" in red. Below those words, write, "Yes, Lord. You know I love You." in blue. Below those words, write, "Feed My lambs." in purple.
  9. In PANEL #2: write, "Peter, do you love Me?" in red. Below those words, write, "Yes, Lord. You know I love You." in blue. Below those words, write, "Feed My sheep" in purple.
  10. In PANEL #3: write, "Peter, do you love Me?" in red. Below those words, write, "Lord, you know all things. You know I love You." in blue. Below those words, write, "Feed My sheep" in purple.
  11. In last panel, draw a large square and cut it out. This is the window. Above the window, write, "What did that mean?" Below the window, write "Peter would be teaching the people or feeding the sheep." Write "feeding the sheep" in purple.
  12. TURN PAPER OVER, making sure that the words can be read on the other side.
  13. In the first panel with the window, nothing should be written.
  14. In the second panel next  to the window, write "John 21:15-17."
  15. In the third panel, draw many, many small circles. These are the faces of people on the Day of Pentecost in Acts 2. 
  16. In the fourth panel, write "Acts 2-First Gospel Preacher."
  17. Hand out scraps of paper.
  18. Cut a green triangle out of the green paper. This is Peter's body.
  19. Cut out two shorter green triangles. These are Peter's arms.
  20. Cut out a tan circle. This is the back of Peter's head.
  21. Cut out two tiny tan circles. These are Peter's hands.
  22. Glue Peter's body to the bottom of the green paper, covering some of the faces of the people.
  23. Glue Peter's arms to his body.
  24. Glue Peter's head to his body.
  25. Glue Peter's hands to the end of his arms.
  26. Color the back of Peter's head with hair.
  27. Fold paper on lines again with Peter inside the box.
  28. Tape the two open sides together.
  29. Students should read their "box before leaving class.

Friday, April 24, 2015

Lesson - Jesus Appears After His Death

VERSES:  Mark 16:6-18; Luke 24:13-48; John 20:11-31

MEMORY VERSE:  Mark 16:16  "He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved..."

BOOK TO REMEMBER:  Zephaniah.  Write "Zephaniah" on small slips of paper, so the students may memorize another book of the Old Testament.

PRAYER:  Thank God for loving us enough to send His only begotten Son to this earth and die on the cross for us.

SPECIAL SONG:  The Books Of The Old Testament -(see March 2014 - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #3 on this blog. Click on orange circle for tune.)

VISUAL AID:  Large Activity (see below)

  • When Jesus had risen from the dead on the first day of the week, He first appeared to Mary Magdalene as she stood outside the tomb. She was crying and stooped down and looked inside the tomb and saw two angels dressed in white. One angel was sitting at the head and the other was sitting at the feet of where Jesus' body had been. The angels saw her and asked her, "Why are you crying?" Mary said, "Because they have taken away my Lord and I don't know where they have laid Him." When Mary had answered the angels, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not know it was Jesus. Jesus asked her, "Woman, why are you crying?" She thought He was the gardener and said to Him, "If you have taken Him somewhere else, tell me and I will take Him away." Then Jesus said to her, "Mary." She turned to Him and said to him, "Rabboni!" which means Master. Jesus told her not to touch Him because He had not ascended to His Father, yet. He told her to go to His disciples and tell them that Jesus was going to ascend to His Father. Mary did as she was told, going back to the disciples as they mourned and wept for Jesus. She told them that she had seen Jesus and that He had spoken to her, but they did not believe her.
  • On that same day, but a little later, two of Jesus' disciples were walking together on the road to village of Emmaus. As they talked and reasoned together in deep conversation, Jesus drew closer to them, but they did not recognize Him. Jesus spoke to them, "What are you talking about as you are walking?" One of the two men whose name was Cleopas answered Him, "Are you the only stranger in Jerusalem who doesn't know what has happened here the past few days?" Jesus asked him, "What things?" Then, they told Him about Jesus of Nazareth, who was a prophet of God, powerful in words and deed. They told Him about how the chief priests and rulers condemned Him to death on the cross and how the women were at the tomb on that very morning, but did not find His body there. The women had seen angels there and had come back to tell them. When some went to the tomb, they found it just like the women said, but Jesus was not there. That's when Jesus started talking all about the scriptures concerning Himself, beginning with Moses and the prophets. As they drew closer to the village of Emmaus, Jesus was going to leave the men, but they urged Him to stay with them since it was getting late. Jesus agreed to stay. As they got ready to eat, Jesus took the bread and blessed it and gave it to them. That is when their eyes were opened and they knew that He was Jesus--and then He disappeared! The disciples said to each other, "Didn't our hearts burn within us as He spoke to us from the scriptures?" They got up right then, walked back to Jerusalem where the eleven disciples were together, and told them that certainly Jesus had risen from the dead, describing what had happened to them. 
  • As they were talking together with the eleven, Jesus stood in the middle of them and said, "Peace, be to you." They were frightened and terrified and thought they had seen a spirit. But Jesus said to them, "Why are you troubled? Look at my hands and my feet. It is Me!" Then Jesus showed them His hands and His feet and how they had nail scars in them. When the disciples still could not believe because of their joy and amazement, He asked them if they had anything to eat. They gave Him a piece of broiled fish and honeycomb and He ate it in front of them. He said that these were the words that Moses and the prophets had written in the law, in the prophets, and in the psalms concerning Him. Then Jesus opened up their understanding, so that they could understand what He was saying. He told them that it was written that Christ should suffer and rise again on the third day and that repentance and remission of sins would be preached in His name, beginning at Jerusalem. He told them to go into all the world and preach the gospel to everyone. he said that he that believed and was baptized would be saved. Then He told them that they would be able to perform miracles to show that they were from God.
  • Next time, we will study about Jesus appearing to more of His disciples at other times before He went into heaven.
"Older Student" Tips:
  • To think of all the sadness and sorrow that Jesus' disciples had gone through, seeing Him suffer and die on the cross. They had been together with Jesus for three and a half years! They must have been full of grief and at a loss at what would come next. Think of their joy when they realized that Jesus was alive again! He had been dead, but now He was alive! Their joy must have been greater than their sadness had been!
  • Do we remember why there were only eleven disciples gathered together in Jerusalem instead of twelve? (Judas had died.)
ACTIVITY:  Jesus Appears After His Death
Materials needed:  White bond paper, crayons, pen.

  1. Hand out white paper.
  2. Fold in thirds.
  3. Do not unfold.
  4. On outside fold, write "Jesus Appears After his Death".
  5. Open once.
  6. On bottom panel, write "Mark 16:6-18", "Luke 24:13-48", and "John 20:11-31".
  7. Completely unfold the paper.
  8. Trace on lines.
  9. Write #1 on the top panel, #2 on the middle panel, and #3 on the bottom panel.
  10. In PANEL #1: Draw Jesus and Mary at the tomb in the garden. Draw and label tomb, great stone, Jesus, Mary, and the word GARDEN. Write "Mary" close to Jesus and MASTER close to Mary.
  11. In PANEL #2: Draw Jesus talking to two men on the road to Emmaus. Draw a sign that says EMMAUS. Label Jesus. Write, "What are you talking about as you are walking?" above Jesus. Write "Are you the only stranger in Jerusalem who doesn't know what has happened here in the past few days?" above the two men.
  12. In PANEL #3: Draw Jesus talking to thirteen men, two on one side of Jesus and eleven men on the other side of Jesus. Label Jesus. Draw a sign that says JERUSALEM. Write "Why are you troubled? Look at my hands and my feet. It is ME!" above Jesus.
  13. Fold up and take home.

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Lesson - Jesus Is Risen!

VERSES:  Matthew 28:1-20;  Mark 16:1-20;  Luke 24:1-12;  John 20:1-10

MEMORY VERSE:   Luke 24:6  "He is not here, but is risen..."

BOOK TO REMEMBER:   Habakkuk. Write "Habakkuk" on small slips of paper and hand out at the end of class, so the students may memorize another Old Testament book at home.

PRAYER:  Thank God for His plan for saving us from our sins.

SPECIAL SONG:  Jesus Loves Me ( see February 2014 - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #2 on this blog. Click on the orange circle to hear tune.) Jesus Loves The Little Children (see February 2014 - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #2 on this blog. Click on orange circle to hear tune.)

VISUAL AID:  Large Activity (see below)

  • At the end of the Sabbath, two days after Jesus had died on the cross, the sun was coming up. Mary Magdalene, Mary, the mother of James, and Salome went to the tomb as the dawn began to break.  It was the first day of the week and they had brought sweet spices, so they could anoint Jesus. As they were going to the tomb, they remembered the great stone and wondered aloud to each other how they were going to move the stone, so they could anoint Jesus. They did not know that there had been an earthquake! The angel of the Lord had come down from heaven, rolled back the great stone in front of the door of the tomb, and had sat on it. The soldiers who were watching the tomb shook with fear when they saw the the bright and shining angel who had clothes that were white as snow. They had fallen to the ground and then had run away. The women saw the stone was rolled away and there were no soldiers there.
  • When Mary Magdalene saw that the stone was rolled away, she ran back to tell the disciples. But the other women went into the tomb and saw that the body of Jesus was gone! They saw an angel clothed in a long white garment and they were afraid!
  • The angel said to the women, "Don't be afraid! I know that you are looking for Jesus who was crucified. He is not here. He is risen. Remember how Jesus said that He would be delivered into the hands of sinful men, He would be crucified, and He would rise again on the third day. Go quickly and tell His disciples that He has risen from the dead! He goes before you into Galilee and you will see Him there." The women remembered Jesus' words and ran from the tomb with great joy to tell Jesus' disciples about the things that had just happened!
  • As they ran to tell the disciples, Jesus met them and said, "All hail!" They fell down at His feet, held on to His feet, and worshiped Him. Jesus said not to be afraid and then He told them to tell His disciples that they should go into Galilee and they would see Him there.
  • The women returned to the eleven disciples and told the things that had happened, but they did not believe them. Then Peter and John got up and ran to the tomb. John arrived at the tomb first, but did not go in. He looked in and saw the linen clothes folded up, But when Peter arrived at the tomb, he ran in and saw the clothes and the napkin that had been around Jesus' face sitting apart from the rest of the cloth. Then, John also went into the tomb, saw the linen cloth and how Jesus' body was not there, and he believed. Before this, they had not fully understood what Jesus had said about rising on the third day while He was with them.
  • Meanwhile, some of the soldiers who were watching the tomb went into the city and told the chief priests everything that had happened. When the Jewish elders came to the chief priests and soldiers, they had talked about Jesus not being in the tomb. They also gave the soldiers a large amount of money and told them to say that Jesus' disciples had come in the middle of the night and took Jesus away while they slept. Then they promised the soldiers that if the governor heard about it, then they would protect them. So, the soldiers took the money and did as they were told. The Jews today still believe that is what happened, but we know differently! We know that the elders and chief priests and the soldiers lied because the angel said that Jesus had risen from the dead!
  • Then the eleven disciples traveled to Galilee and went up into a mountain where Jesus was. When they saw Jesus, they worshiped Him, but some doubted. Jesus came and spoke to them. He said the He had ALL power on heaven and on earth. He told them that they had a job to do. They were to go and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, then teach them again to do all the things that Jesus had commanded them. Jesus said that he would be with them, even to the end of the world.
  • What a happy ending! Jesus did not stay dead! Their master, their teacher, their Savior, and their friend was alive! He had risen from the dead! 
"Older Student" Tips:
  • The Sabbath was the last day of the week which was Saturday, but the first day of the week was--and still is--Sunday.
  • There were only eleven disciples during this time. Why? Because Judas had tried to return the thirty pieces of silver he had received from betraying Jesus; but the chief priests did not want it. They had received what they had wanted--Jesus! Matthew 27:3-10 tells us what happened to Judas.He realized that he had betrayed innocent blood and that he was condemned. He was sorry for what he had done, but instead of asking for forgiveness from God and living again in a godly way, he threw down the silver in the temple and went and hanged himself. The money was used to purchase a cemetery plot for poor people.
  • Read Colossians 1:23 to see if the disciples accomplished what Jesus had instructed them to do.
  • Read Matthew 28:13. How could the soldiers testify that the disciples had taken Jesus away when they were asleep? They lied and gave false reports.
ACTIVITY:  Jesus Rises From The Grave!
Material needed:  12" x 18" brown construction paper, small piece of paper towel or paper napkin, scraps of orange, blue, tan, and dark brown construction paper, crayons, marker, glue, scissors.

  1. Hand out brown paper.
  2. Fold paper in half.
  3. With fold at top, draw a great stone at right, three rounded corners, and a curved line.
  4. Cut on lines.
  5. Open folded paper.

  6. Cut out a 2.5" x 6" rectangle. Round two corners. This is where they laid Jesus.
  7. Glue this rectangle on right side and bottom edge of brown paper.
  8. Hand out paper towel or napkin.
  9. Cut a long strip and a small square out of paper towel or napkin. This the linen cloth and linen napkin.
  10. Fold each.
  11. Glue folded napkin and folded towel on top of brown rectangle. Label each.
  12. Cut two 1" circles. These are Peter and John's heads.
  13. Cut out blue and orange triangles.These are their clothes.
  14. Cut out one orange arm and two blue arms.
  15. Cut out three tiny hands out of scraps of tan.
  16. Assemble Peter and John.
  17. Glue and color..
  18. Glue Peter inside tomb.
  19. Glue John on the outside of the stone.
  20. Write "Peter" and "John" on the two men.
  21. Write "Great Stone" on the rounded stone.
  22. Write "Jesus Rises From The Grave On The Third Day" and "Luke 24:7" on the outside of the tomb.
  23. Open brown paper.
  24. On the inside of the stone, write "On the first day of the week" and "John 20:1."
  25. On the right side of the tomb, write "He is not here!" , "He is Risen!" and "Matthew 28:6."
  26. Between napkin and linen clothing, write "John 20:7."

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Lesson - Jesus Is Buried

VERSES:  Matthew 27:57-66   Mark 15:42-47;   Luke 23:50-56;   John 19:38-42

MEMORY VERSE:  Matthew 27:65.    "...make it as sure as you can."

BOOK TO REMEMBER:  Nahum. Write "Nahum" on small slips of paper, so the students may memorize another Old Testament book at home.

PRAYER:   Thank God for His Bible and that we can read about Jesus whenever we want.

SPECIAL SONG:  The Books Of The Old Testament (see March 2014 - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #3 on this blog. Click on orange circle for tune); No, Not One (see June 2014 - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #6 on this blog. Click on orange circle to hear tune.)

VISUAL AID:  Large Activity (see below)

  • Recently, we studied how Jesus had been betrayed by a friend, denied and abandoned by His disciples, tried by Pilate, and, finally, was crucified on a cross. The reason for His death? To save us from our sins (1 Corinthians 15:3). Without Jesus dying on the cross, there would be no possible way for us to have a hope of heaven. This was God's plan. But, what happened after Jesus died on the cross? 
  •  When it was evening, the day before the Sabbath, a rich and honorable man named Joseph from a city of the Jews called Arimathaea went in boldly to Pilate and begged for the body of Jesus. Joseph was a good and just man and was secretly Jesus' disciple because he was afraid of the Jews. Joseph was not one of the Jews who had said, "Crucify him!" 
  • Pilate was surprised when Joseph asked for Jesus' body. He wasn't certain if Jesus had already died, so he called in the centurion and asked him if Jesus had died. When the centurion said it was true that Jesus was dead, Pilate gave the body to Joseph. Joseph took Jesus' body and wrapped it in a clean linen cloth and laid the body in his own new tomb that had never been used. The tomb was cut out of a rock and was in a garden close to where they had crucified Jesus. 
  • There was another man who was a Pharisee named Nicodemus, who had also come to Jesus at night and talked to Him some time before (John 3:1-21). Nicodemus brought about a hundred pound weight of a mixture of myrrh and aloes that was very expensive for the burial. Then Joseph and Nicodemus wound the body of Jesus in the linen cloth with the spices as the Jews' custom was for burial. Joseph rolled a great stone in front of the door and then they left.
  • The women, who came from Galilee with Jesus, had followed Joseph and sat against the tomb. They saw where the tomb was located and how Jesus' body was laid. Then the women went back to prepare spices and ointments and rested on the Sabbath as they were commanded to do.
  • Meanwhile, the chief priests and the Pharisees were still thinking about Jesus. They met with Pilate and said that they remembered that Jesus had said while He was still alive that He would rise again in three days. They asked if Pilate would command that the tomb be made secure until the third day. They were afraid that Jesus' disciples would come at night and steal Jesus' body, then tell the people Jesus had risen from the dead. They were afraid that if Jesus' disciples stole Jesus' body, then Jesus' influence would be greater than when He was alive on the earth. 
  • Pilate said to the chief priests and Pharisees that they could have a watch which meant that soldiers would stay by the tomb all day and all night to make sure no one was able to get into the tomb. Pilate told them to make the watch as sure as they could. So the chief priests and Pharisees went and made the tomb secure and even sealed the stone and set a watch of soldiers. We will see what happens when morning comes!
"Older Student" Tips:

  • Perhaps Pilate was surprised that Jesus had died so soon because Jesus had only been on the cross from about six hours (from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm). Read Mark 15:25 and Mark 15:33. How long was Jesus on the cross? How long was it dark?

ACTIVITY:  Who Did? WhoSaid?
Materials needed:  3" x 5" cards (paper cut into rectangles), 4.5" x 9" dark green construction paper, stapler, staples, pen.

  1. Hand out ten or so cards.
  2. Student writes either "Who Did?" or "Who Said?" at the top of the card.
  3. Student writes a question at the top of the card and the answer with Bible verse at the bottom of the card.
  4. Hand out dark green paper.
  5. Fold paper up to 3" from the top of the paper.
  6. Staple on left and right sides of paper, forming a pocket.
  7. Fold top down.
  8. Each student teams up with another student in class and they ask each other their questions. The student who answers the most questions correctly wins. 
  9. Tuck cards into pocket to take home.

  • WHO DID?  Who brought 100 pound weight of myrrh and aloes? (Nicodemus - John 19:39)
  • WHO DID?  Who placed Jesus in the tomb?  (Joseph and Nicodemus - John 19:40, 42)
  • WHO DID?  After they saw where the tomb was and how Jesus was laid, who went back and prepared spices? (The women - Luke 23:55, 56)
  • WHO DID?  Who sat against the sepulchre or tomb? (Women - Mary Magdalene and the other Mary - Matthew 27:61)
  • WHO SAID?  "We remember Jesus said, 'After three days I will rise again?'"  (The chief priests and Pharisees - Matthew 22:63)
  • WHO DID?  Who rolled a stone to the door of the tomb? (Joseph of Arimathaea - Mark 15:46)
  • WHO DID?  Who went boldly to Pilate? (Joseph of Arimathaea - Mark 15:43)
  • WHO DID?  Who begged Pilate for Jesus' body? (Joseph of Arimathaea - Matthew 27:57, 58)
  • WHO DID? Who made the tomb secure and even sealed it? (The chief priests and Pharisees - Matthew 27:66)
  • WHO SAID?  "Make it as sure as you can?"  (Pilate - Matthew 27:65)

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Lesson - Jesus is Crucified

VERSES:  Matthew 27:27-56;  Mark 15:16-41;  Luke 23:26-49;  John 19:1-37

MEMORY VERSE:  John 19:30  "...he said, It is finished..."

BOOK TO REMEMBER:  Micah.  Write "Micah" on small slips of paper and hand out at the end of class, so the students may memorize another book at home.

PRAYER:  Realizing that Jesus gave His life for us, let us always thank God for sending His Son to die on the cross for our sins.

SPECIAL SONG:  No, Not One (see June 2014 - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #6 on this blog. Click on orange circle to hear tune.)

VISUAL AID:  Large Activity (see below)

  • After Pilate had instructed Jesus to be scourged or whipped, the soldiers led Him into the Praetorium Hall and gathered the whole band or cohort of Roman soldiers where they mocked or made fun of Jesus. The soldiers put a purple robe on Him, someone braided a crown of thorns and placed it on His head, then they began to salute Him and say, "Hail! King of the Jews!" They hit Him on the head with a reed which was a tall, slender plant, and put it in His right hand. They spit on Jesus and bowed down on their knees and pretended to worship Him. When they had finished making fun of Him, they took the robe off, put His own clothes back on Him and led Him out to be crucified.
  • When they came out of the hall, they found a man from Cyrene passing by named Simon and forced him to carry Jesus' cross. They walked until they came to a place called Golgotha which meant a place of the skull. Golgotha and Calvary were the same place. There was a great multitude of people following Jesus and many women who mourned and cried after Him. The soldiers gave Jesus a drink of wine which had myrrh in it, but when Jesus tasted it, he would not drink it. 
  • When they arrived at the place where He was to be crucified, there were two criminals who were thieves and were already hanging on their crosses. As the soldiers placed Jesus on a cross in the middle of the two other men, Jesus prayed to His Father, asking Him to forgive them because they did not know what they were doing. Then the soldiers divided Jesus' clothing, even His seamless coat, by casting lots. 
  • There were so many people standing and looking at Jesus! Those who passed by, scolded Jesus and shook their heads and said, "You who destroyed the temple and would build it up in three days, save yourself!" The rulers who had been making fun of Him, said, "He saved others, let Him save Himself if He is the Christ, the chosen of God. Come down from the cross and we will believe you!"" The soldiers, too, mocked Him and offered Him vinegar and said, "If you are the king of the Jews, save yourself!" Pilate had instructed that a sign be made that said in three languages, "This is the King of the Jews." It was placed over Him on the cross. The sign was read by many of the Jews because the place where Jesus was crucified was close to the city. The chief priests said to Pilate, "Don't write King of the Jews. Write, "He said I am King of the Jews." Pilate didn't listen to them. He only said, "What I have written, I have written." 
  • Mary, Jesus' mother, His mother's sister who was also named Mary, and Mary Magdalene stood by the cross. When Jesus saw His mother and John standing by, Jesus said to his mother, "Woman, behold your son!" meaning John. Then He said to John, "Behold your mother!" From that hour on, John took Mary into his own home and took care of her. Even as Jesus was dying on the cross, He remembered His mother, Mary. 
  • One of the criminals who hanged beside Jesus railed or insulted Jesus. He said, "If you are the Christ, save yourself and us!" But, the other criminal rebuked or scolded the other criminal and asked Him, "Do you not fear God, seeing that you are condemned? We are here by what we have done, but this man has done nothing wrong." Then, he said to Jesus, "Remember me when you come to your kingdom." Jesus replied, "Truly, I say to you that today you will be with me in paradise."
  • Even though it was not even noon, darkness came over the earth for three hours. Jesus cried out with a loud voice, "Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?" which meant "My God, my God, why have You forsaken Me?" When some of them, who were standing by, heard what He said, they thought He was calling to Elijah. Someone ran and filled a sponge with vinegar and put it on a reed and put it up to His lips. That sounds like a kind thing to do, but it was done without kindness because the one who did it, said, "Let us see whether Elijah will some and take Him down." When Jesus received the vinegar, He said, "It is finished." Then, Jesus cried in a loud voice, "Father, into your hands, I commend my spirit." And then bowed His head and died. 
  • The Jews had a law that said that bodies should not remain on the cross on the Sabbath day, so they asked Pilate earnestly that their legs should be broken that they might be taken away. But when the soldiers came and broke the legs of the two who were crucified, they saw that that Jesus was already dead, so they did not break His legs. One of the soldiers pierced Jesus' side and blood and water came out. John saw the soldier pierce Jesus' side.
  • Unusual things started happening. The sun had already darkened, but the veil of the temple was torn down the middle from the top to the bottom, there were earthquakes, and rocks broke in two. The graves opened up and many bodies of the saints or followers of God came out of their graves and appeared to many people in Jerusalem.
  • When the centurion, a Roman officer, saw what had happened, he glorified God and said, "Surely, this was a righteous man. Truly, He was the Son of God!" Then, all the people who were there watching, and had seen all the things that were done, hit their chests and went home. All of Jesus' friends and the women who followed Him from Galilee stood far away and watched everything that had happened.
"Older Student" Tips:
  • Simon was from Cyrene which was located in northern Africa in the country of Libya.
  • Casting lots was much like our "drawing straws." It was just a method of choosing which person would receive which piece of Jesus' clothing.
  • The three languages that "This is the King of the Jews" were written in was Greek, Latin, and Hebrew.
  • Jesus was not a Christian; therefore He lived and died by the Old Testament Law. After Jesus had died on the cross, that was when His law, the New Testament Law, took effect. Even today, when someone remembers us in their will, we do not receive what was promised until the one who wrote the will dies. 
  • What compassion Jesus had to make sure that His own mother was taken care of when He wouldn't be there. He loved His mother.
ACTIVITY: Jesus Is Crucified
Materials needed:  6" x 12" light brown construction paper, scraps of tan, gold, and dark brown paper, crayons, pencil, marker, glue.

  1. Hand out light brown paper.
  2. Round the corners of light brown paper by tearing. This is Calvary.
  3. Hand out scraps of paper.
  4. Cut out two dark brown crosses and one gold cross.
  5. Fold the middle of all crosses.
  6. Glue ONLY the bottom edge of the crosses. This way the crosses have a 3-D effect.
  7. Place gold cross in the middle of the two dark crown crosses.
  8. At the bottom of Calvary, write "Jesus died on the cross." and "Matthew 27, Mark 15, Luke 23, John 19."
  9. Cut a small tan rectangle and write "King of the Jews". This is the sign.
  10. Glue sign at the top of the gold cross.
  11. Turn Calvary over.
  12. On back of Calvary, write in a curved line, following the top of the hill,
  13. Write events that the student learned from this lesson, such as, "They mocked Jesus. They placed a crown of thorns on his head. Jesus hung between two thieves. They put a sign over Him that said, "The King Of The Jews." It was dark for three hours. After Jesus died, the veil in the temple tore in two. There were earthquakes and the rocks were broken. 'Truly, this was the Son of God.'"

Friday, April 17, 2015

Lesson - Jesus Before Pilate

VERSES:  Matthew 27:1-26;  Mark 15:1-15;  Luke 23:1-24;  John 18:28-19:16

MEMORY VERSE:  Mark 15:2  "And Pilate asked him Art thou King of the Jews?..."

BOOK TO REMEMBER:  Jonah. Write "Jonah" on small slips of paper and hand out to the students at the end of class, so they may memorize another Old Testament book at home.

PRAYER:  Thank God for His only begotten Son who died on the cross for the sins of the whole world.

SPECIAL SONG:   No, Not One (see June 2014 - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #6 on this blog. Click on orange circle to hear tune.)

VISUAL AID:  Large Activity (see below)

  • After being betrayed and arrested in the Garden of Gethsemane, bound and led away to the high priest and the council, and the scattering and denial of His disciples, Jesus had been up all night. When morning came, He was sent from the high priest to the governor, who had even more power and authority in matters of death, which is what the angry chief priests and elders wanted to happen to Jesus. They wanted Him to die. The governor asked the Jews what Jesus had done. The chief priests and elders said if He was not a criminal, they would not have brought Jesus there. The governor told the Jews to take Jesus back and judge him according to the Jewish law, but the Jews said they could not put anyone to death. So, the governor called Jesus into his judgment hall.
  • As Jesus stood before the very important governor, Pontius Pilate, He was asked, "Are you the king of the Jews?" Jesus said, "It is as you say." But, when Jesus was accused of many things by the elders and chief priests, He said nothing. Pilate noticed that Jesus said nothing. He said to Him, "Can't you hear all of these many things they say against you?" but Jesus never answered with even one word. Pilate was amazed! Finally, Pilate told the people that he could find no fault or anything wrong with Jesus.
  • The chief priests told Pilate that Jesus had stirred up trouble with all the Jews from Galilee to Jerusalem. When Pilate heard the word "Galilee," he was relieved and happy to send Jesus to Herod, who was the one who had authority over the Galilee area. Pilate thought that this would solve his problem with what to do about Jesus.
  • So, Jesus was led to Herod. Herod was happy when he heard that Pilate was sending Jesus to see him because he had heard much about Jesus and wanted to see a miracle performed. When Herod found out that Jesus did not even answer his questions and no miracles were to be performed, he and his soldiers made fun of Jesus, put a beautiful robe on Him, and sent Jesus back to Pilate. Because of Jesus, Herod and Pilate became friends again.
  • One of the rules at the feast of the Passover was that the governor could release one prisoner if the people wanted. There was a famous prisoner named Barabbas who had committed murder and was in prison at that time. When Pilate called all of the people together, He asked the people who they wanted to be released--Barabbas or Jesus. Even Pilate knew that the reason that Jesus was standing before him was because the Jews were envious of Jesus (Matthew 27:18).
  • When Pilate sat down on his judgment seat, his wife told him that she had had a dream about Jesus and her advice was to have nothing to do with Jesus who was just and righteous.
  • When the governor asked the huge crowd which person he should release, the chief priests and elders had persuaded the crowd to ask for Barabbas to be released, but not Jesus. They all said together, "Barabbas!" When Pilate asked what he should do with Jesus, they all answered, "Crucify him!" (When someone is crucified, they are put on a cross until they die.) Pilate then asked the people, "Why, what evil has he done?" But all the people cried out even louder to Pilate, "Crucify him!!" When Pilate could see that he could do nothing to change the people's minds, he took water, and washed his hands in front of everyone as he said, "I am innocent of the blood of this good person." The people again answered him, "His blood be of us and on our children!" That meant that they would take the blame for what was going to happen. So, just to please the people, Pilate released Barabbas, a known murderer, to the people, but handed over an innocent Jesus to be crucified after they had whipped Him.
"Older Student" Tips:
  • No one likes to think about bad things happening to people, but in this case, Jesus wanted us to know and to remember what He went through on our behalf. By knowing about the unfairness, the scourging, and many other terrible things to come, we can understand how much He loved us. Read Romans 5:7, 8.
  • What self-control Jesus had not to say anything to the chief priests and scribes! We notice that even Pilate was amazed at this.
  • Discuss the choice that the Jews made by choosing Barabbas, a famous and well-known criminal to be released from prison instead of Jesus who had never ever sinned! Read Hebrews 4:15 and 1 Peter 1:19 and 1 Peter 2:22.
ACTIVITY:  Jesus Before Pilate
Materials needed:  9" x 12" brown construction paper, 1" x 10" yellow construction paper, scraps of tan and white construction paper, crayons, marker, scissors, glue.

  1. Hand out brown paper.
  2. Fold brown paper in half.
  3. Draw a large "T" on the front, middle of the brown paper.
  4. Cut on "T." These are the doors.
  5. Fold back both doors.
  6. Unfold the brown paper.
  7. Glue the inside top of the brown paper with the doors open. (DO NOT glue the large, plain bottom of the brown paper or the doors will be glued shut!)
  8. Re-fold brown paper again and press papers together, so the papers are glued together.
  9. Hand out yellow strip.
  10. Write "Pilate's Judgment Hall" on the yellow strip.
  11. Glue yellow strip above doors.
  12. Close doors.
  13. Hand out white and tan scraps of paper.
  14. On a small scrap, draw, color, and cut out soldier.
  15. Glue soldier to outside of the door, as if he is guarding the door.
  16. Open doors. Inside is the Judgment Hall.
  17. On tan paper, draw, color, and cut out Pilate on his throne and Jesus standing with hands tied.
  18. On white scraps, draw and cutout a pillar and speech bubbles that say, "Are you King of the Jews?" and "It is as you say."
  19. With doors open, glue pillar, Pilate, Jesus and speech bubbles to the inside of the Judgment Hall.
  20. On a small white scrap of paper, write "Matthew 27, Mark 15, Luke 23, and John 18."
  21. Glue small paper to outside of the Judgment Hall.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Lesson - Peter Denies Jesus As Jesus Stands Before The High Priest

VERSES: Matthew 26:57-75;  Mark 14:53-72; Luke 22:54-71; John 18:12-27

MEMORY VERSE:   Matthew 26:75  "And peter remembered the word of Jesus, which said unto him, Before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice. And he went out, and wept bitterly."

BOOK TO REMEMBER:  Obadiah. Write "Obadiah" on small slips of paper and hand out at the end of class, so the students may memorize another Old Testament book at home.

PRAYER:  Pray that we will not be ashamed of the Gospel. Let us tell everyone about our loving Savior.

SPECIAL SONG:  Jesus Loves The Little Children (see February 2014 - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #2 on this blog. Click on orange circle to hear tune.)

VISUAL AID:  Large Activity (see below)

  • While Jesus was being led first to Annas, the high priest, the scribes and elders gathered together and tried to find witnesses who would say things about Jesus that were worthy of death, but could not find one. Finally they found witnesses who lied about Jesus, but they did not say the same things about Him. 
  • Where were Jesus' disciples? All of His disciples had run away because they were afraid that they, too, might be arrested. Many of the disciples were nowhere to be seen, but only Peter and John followed Jesus from a distance away, watching to see what was going to happen. As the mob led Jesus, John was able to go into the palace of the high priest with Jesus because the high priest knew John, but Peter was not allowed inside.
  • So, as Peter stood outside the door, John went outside and spoke to the young maiden who was the doorkeeper and, finally, was able to bring Peter inside. When the young girl saw Peter, she asked him, "Aren't you also one of this man's disciples?" meaning Jesus's disciples. Peter said, "I am not." (Uh-oh! Peter denied Jesus!) As the servants and officers who stood nearby, a fire had been made because it was cold. Peter warmed himself beside the fire with them.
  • Meanwhile, the high priest asked Jesus questions about His disciples and His doctrine, or what He taught. Jesus answered the high priest, "I have done nothing secretly. I spoke openly to everyone. I taught in the synagogue and in the temple. Why are you asking me these things? Ask those who heard me what I said to them. They know." When Jesus had finished speaking, one of the officers who stood by struck Jesus with the palm of his hand and said, "Why are you answering the high priest like that?" Jesus replied, "If I have answered wrongly, tell what the wrong is, but if I speak the truth, why did you strike me?" Then Annas sent Jesus bound to Caiaphas, the high priest and his son-in-law, who beforehand had told the Jews that one man should die for the people.
  • As Peter warmed himself by the fire, some of the men asked him, "Aren't you one of Jesus' disciples?" Peter again denied that he was Jesus' disciple. (Uh-oh! that's the second time Peter denied Jesus!) One of the high priest's servants who was related to Malchus, whose right ear Peter had cut off with a sword in the Garden of Gethsemane, said to Peter, "Didn't I see you in the garden with Jesus? Surely, you are one of them. We can tell from your speech that you are from Galilee." Peter, again denied Jesus for the third time, by saying, "I don't know this man." 
  • While Peter was speaking was when the rooster crowed. At that moment, Jesus turned His head and looked at Peter. It was then that Peter remembered what Jesus had said about denying Him three times before the rooster crowed twice. Peter went out and cried bitterly.
"Older Student" Tips:
  • Two high priests? Annas had been taken out of power by the Romans, but the Jews still looked upon Annas as the true high priest. Caiaphas merely held the position for Annas.
  • Read Luke 22:61. Only Luke tells us about Jesus turning and looking at Peter. Jesus knew everything that happened before it happened and He still does.
  • When we are convicted of our sins, like Peter was, it makes us very sad, so sad that we completely change our ways and go in the opposite direction as we will see Peter does in later lessons in the book of Acts.
ACTIVITY:   Peter denies Jesus Three Times
Materials needed:  12" x 18" yellow construction paper, crayons, marker, tape.

  1. Hand out yellow paper.
  2. Fold paper in half, width-wise.
  3. Fold paper in half again.
  4. Unfold paper.
  5. Fold one panel the opposite way, so the paper will make a box.
  6. PANEL 1:  The top panel will be blank. This will be the panel that will be taped under Peter's panel when finished as support.
  7. PANEL 2:  At the top of this panel, write, "JESUS Stands Before The High Priest." In this panel, draw the high priest, Jesus, and at least one officer. Draw Jesus' hands bound. In the blank areas in this panel, write the things that Jesus said to the high priest, for example, "I have done nothing secretly." "I spoke to everyone openly" "I taught in the temple and synagogue "Why are you asking me these things?" "Ask those who heard me, what I said to them" and "They know." Color the picture.
  8. PANEL 3:  In large letters, write "MEANWHILE..." and, in small letters, write, "Matthew 25:57-75" "Mark 14:53-72" "Luke 22:54-71" and "John 18:12-27." Color the word, MEANWHILE...
  9. PANEL 4:  At the top of this panel, write, "Peter Denies Jesus 3 Times." In this panel, draw three boxes numbered at the top of each box. 
    • In Box 1, draw Peter and John and the young girl by the door. Beside Box 1, write "Aren't you one of this man's disciples?" and "I am not." Circle "I am not."
    • In Box 2, draw peter warming himself by the fire with a man. Beside Box 2, write, "Aren't you one of Jesus' disciples?" and "I do not know Him." Circle "I do not know Him."
    • In box 3, draw Peter and an officer. Beside Box 3, write "Didn't I see you in the garden with Jesus?" and "I do not know this man."
10.  Refold yellow paper into a triangle that stands up.

11.  Tape sides.

12.  Rehearse story with students, if time permits.