Bible Story: (John 19:1-20:10)
Text Truth: We should tell everyone about Jesus because He is ALIVE!
Memory Verse: 1 Corinthians 15:3b-4
As we learned in last week’s lesson, many people followed Jesus. They praised him and thought very highly of Him.
Today, we learn that the religious leaders did not like Jesus. They did not like that so many people followed Him, and they did not like that He called Himself God’s Son. The religious leaders wanted to get rid of Jesus.
One night, a group of people arrested Jesus. They took Him to the governor of the land, Pilate. Pilate allowed the soldiers to beat Jesus. They put a crown of thorns on His head and a purple robe on His back.
Question: Why do you think they put these things on Jesus? (They were making fun of Jesus. They made fun of Jesus calling Himself God’s Son–the true King.)
Pilate eventually told the soldiers to stop beating Jesus. Pilate told the religious leaders, “I can’t find any reason to continue punishing Him (Jesus).” But the religious leaders continually yelled “Crucify Him! Crucify Him!” The religious leaders were mad at Jesus and did not believe the truth about Him.
Question: What does “crucify” mean? (To put someone to death by nailing/binding them to a cross.)
Pilate did not want to crucify Jesus. He was afraid of what was happening, and tried to find a way to release Jesus. But the large crowd of people did not give up. They kept yelling “Crucify Him!” louder and louder. Finally, Pilate reluctantly said he would let the people crucify Jesus.
The people led Jesus away and made him carry his own cross up the hill where he would be crucified. Pilate made a sign for the people to put on top of Jesus’ cross. The sign said: “Jesus of Nazareth, The King of the Jews.”
While Jesus was dying on the cross, He looked down at the people watching. Among the people was His own mother and the disciple John. Jesus asked John to take care of Jesus’ mother when He was gone. After this, Jesus knew that every Scripture prophesied about Him had been or would be fulfilled so He said, “It is finished.” Jesus then died on that cross to pay the punishment for OUR sins.
Nicodemus and Joseph of Arimathea took Jesus’ body from the cross and wrapped it in linen cloth. They then placed Jesus’ body in Joseph of Arimathea’s new tomb in the garden.
Three days have now passed. Mary Magdalene decided to visit Jesus’ tomb while it was still dark. When she reached the tomb, she noticed that the huge stone closing the tomb had been rolled away. The tomb was empty! She at first cried thinking someone had stolen Jesus’ body. But when she turned around, she saw Jesus standing there and talking to her! Jesus was ALIVE!!!
Question: How would you feel if you saw Jesus die and then He was alive again three days later?
Question: What do you think Mary did after this? (Mary was so very excited that she RAN to tell Peter and John.)
Jesus died to pay for our sins, but he did not stay dead. Jesus is alive! This is news we should not want to keep to ourselves. Just like Mary was excited to tell Peter and John about Jesus, we should want to tell others as well!
1) Object Lesson (courtesy in part by Amy David Day)
Supplies: Plate or saucer, a penny, small candle, matches, cup of colored water (any color), and a clear drinking glass.
Hold the penny up. “I am going to explain what happened at the cross. This penny will represent us.”
Place the penny on the plate toward the side. Now take the colored water. “This water will represent sin. Can you name some sins?” As the kids name some sins, pour the colored water over the coin until it is submerged. (You may need to experiment with the water beforehand to see how much to put on the plate for it to work right.)
“The Bible tells us that we ALL sin. Because we are covered by sin, we cannot get into heaven.”
Next, take the small candle, place it in the middle of the plate, and light it. “The candle represents Jesus. He is God’s perfect Son who came to this sin filled earth. The flame represents the life of Christ. Now watch very carefully as I take the glass and put it over the lighted candle.”
Within a few seconds, the flame will consume all the oxygen in the glass and be extinguished. This will create a vacuum which will draw the water inside the glass (thus surrounding the candle) and leave the coin dry.
“When Jesus was on the cross, he gave up His life (the flame went out). Jesus did this so that He could take our sins away and go to Heaven if we believe Him. Jesus did not stay dead for long. He came alive again just three days after he died on the cross! He is the only way to Heaven and we should tell everyone about this good news!”
2) Family Racing Games
Do: Set a race course (for more fun create your own obstacle course). Select an object in your home to be “the tomb.” This object will be the finish line. Have fun running races/doing obstacle courses to reach the tomb just like Peter and John did after Mary told them about Jesus.
Afterwards ask, “Are you a Peter or a John?” Race to find John 20:3-4 in your Bible to find the answer. (Hint: “that other disciple” is John)
ACTIVITY SHEET LINKS (Click the link to download a printable pdf)