Saturday, January 31, 2015

Lesson - Parable Of The Net

VERSES:   Matthew 14:47-51

MEMORY VERSE:   Matthew 14:47   "Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a net..."

BOOK TO REMEMBER:   Review all 27 books of the New Testament. Perhaps, it would help to sing The Books Of The New Testament (see March - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #3. Click on orange circle to hear tune.)

PRAYER:   Pray that we will live in a way that will be pleasing to God by obeying what we read. May we read the Bible every day.

SPECIAL SONG:   Jesus Taught By Parable And Miracle (see March - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #4 on this blog. Click on orange circle to hear tune.)

VISUAL AID:   Large Activity (see below)

  • Jesus told many parables to the people and to His disciples, among whom were Peter, Andrew, James, John, Philip, Thomas, Matthew, Bartholomew, James the one they called the Less, Simon, Thaddeus, and Judas. They all listened very closely to His lessons. 
  • Jesus told His disciples that the kingdom of heaven, which is the church, was like a net that was thrown into the sea. Men stood on the shore and threw a huge net into the water. The net  gathered all kinds of things, and when it was full, they pulled the net to the shore. Many things would be captured in the net, good things and bad things. Then, the men would sit down on the shore and pull out the good things and put them in vessels or hollow containers like bowls, baskets, or jars, but they would throw away the bad things.
  • What does this parable mean? Jesus said that it would be just like that net at the end of the world. The angels would come and divide the wicked people from the just or righteous people, and the wicked would be thrown into a furnace of fire where there would be much sadness and pain. Jesus asked His disciples if they understood the things He was telling them and they said that they did. It was important to Jesus that His disciples understood what He was teaching.
  • We need to be sure that we are the righteous or just people. How do we do that? We must always read the Bible and obey God's Word, even when it is hard to do or when it may be something we don't want to do. God's way is always the best way even when we stand alone. There are wonderful, beautiful rewards for those who obey God and are found faithful in the end. 
"Older Student" Tips:
  • The Bible always says it like it is. Jesus said that the wicked would be thrown into a furnace of fire where there would be wailing and gnashing of teeth. 'Wailing' is a cry of grief or pain. Synonyms for wailing is weeping, sobbing, crying. 'Gnashing of teeth' is what people do when they are very angry or they are dismayed. Those are not happy thoughts, but Jesus told His disciples these things because He wanted them to know that all people would not go to heaven, that there would be a great division at the end of the world, and that the place where the wicked goes is a terrible place. He wanted everyone to obey God and spare themselves a terrible end.
  • The beauties of heaven are not mentioned in these verses; however, by reading verses in Revelation, we know that heaven will be a place of rest and will be a very beautiful and lovely place to be. The book of Revelation is a highly figurative book, but by the simple words that are written, we know we would rather be with the righteous, than with the wicked. If time permits, read Revelation 7:9; 14:13;  21:10-27. Discuss.

ACTIVITY:   Parable of the Net
Materials needed:  9" x 12" light blue construction paper, 3" x 12" dark blue construction paper, 5"x 12" light brown construction paper, scraps of orange and tan and black paper, crayons, glue, marker.

  1. Hand out light blue paper.
  2. Hand out dark blue paper.
  3. Tear a little off the top of the dark blue paper. This is the water.
  4. Glue dark blue paper in the middle of the light blue paper.
  5. Hand out light brown paper.
  6. Glue light brown paper to the bottom of the light blue paper, overlapping the dark blue paper.
  7. Hand out tan scraps of paper.
  8. Draw two men reaching with their hands. Nothing elaborate is necessary. Circles and rectangles will work!
  9. Cut and color the men.
  10. Glue one man on each side of the scene.
  11. Draw a large net between the two men. Connecting lines are good.
  12. Draw baskets on the left and right of each man.
  13. Write "KEEP" above the baskets by one man.
  14. Write "THROW AWAY" above the baskets by the other man.
  15. Color baskets.
  16. Write "The Parable Of The Net" and "Matthew 14:47-51" at the top of the light blue paper.
  17. Hand out orange paper.
  18. Cut out orange fish.
  19. Glue fish on net. Save one fish.
  20. Glue extra fish in the KEEP basket.
  21. Hand out small scrap of black paper.
  22. Cut tiny circles out of black paper. These are rocks.
  23. Glue rocks in basket on the other side of the page.

Friday, January 30, 2015

Lesson - Parable Of The Pearl Of Great Price

VERSES:   Matthew 14:45-46

MEMORY VERSE:   Matthew 14:45   "Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man, seeking goodly pearls."

BOOK TO REMEMBER:   Review all 27 books of the New Testament. Perhaps, it would help to sing The Books Of The New Testament (see March - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #3. Click on orange circle to hear tune.)

PRAYER:   Pray that we will learn how valuable the church is and that we will love and appreciate it.

SPECIAL SONG:   Jesus Taught By Parable And Miracle (see March - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #4 on this blog. Click on orange circle to hear tune.)

VISUAL AID:   Large Activity (see below)

  • Jesus taught many parables about the kingdom of heaven, showing how precious and valuable it is. Another name for the kingdom of heaven is the church. The church is precious and valuable because Jesus paid for the church with His own blood. (Ephesians 5: 25). It is precious indeed.
  • After the people went back to their cities and homes, Jesus went into the house. His disciples came to Him and asked Him about certain parables. Jesus continued teaching His disciples about the kingdom of heaven, the church, as they were sitting and standing around Him, listening to His lessons. 
  • He told them that the kingdom of heaven was like a merchant man, one who bought and sold things, and was seeking or trying to find pearls of good quality. Finally, he found a good, beautiful pearl, but it was very expensive. Do you know what the merchant man did? He went and sold everything he had and, then, went back and bought that valuable pearl. 
  • When we find something that we are searching for, even if it is very costly, we should do what the merchant man did and sacrifice all that we have when we find it. Sometimes, it doesn't cost money. Sometimes, it costs family and friends, ones who may not understand the value of the church. We have already studied in Matthew 6:33 about seeking the kingdom of God first--above everything else--and His righteousness and the things of this life will be given to us, things like food and clothing and shelter. We must always put God first and seek the spiritual things instead of the physical things. 
"Older Student" Tips:
  • The parable of the pearl of great price and the parable of the hidden treasure are much alike, yet there is one difference. That difference is the man who found the hidden treasure simply came across the treasure , but the merchant man in the parable of the pearl of great price was actually seeking--searching for--the pearls. (Matthew 14:44-46)
ACTIVITY:   The Parable of the Pearl of Great Price - Sequence
Materials needed:  8.5 x 11 piece of white paper, 5" x 9" piece of any color construction paper, markers, staples, stapler, scissors.

  1. Hand out white paper.
  2. Fold in half, and then in half again.
  3. Cut out four big circles. (These should look like pearls.)
  4. One one circle, write "I am looking for pearls!" (or draw a picture).
  5. On the second circle, write "I found one! I found one!" (or draw a picture).
  6. On the third circle, write "I have sold all that I have!" (or draw a picture).
  7. On the fourth circle, write "I have bought the pearl of great price!" (or draw a picture).
  8. Hand out the 5" x 9" paper.
  9. Fold paper almost in half, leaving an inch at the top.
  10. Staple the two sides, leaving the top open. This is a pocket.
  11. On the front of the pocket, write "The kingdom of heaven is like..." and "Matthew 14:45, 46" and, in small letters "Which comes first?"
  12. Shuffle the circles.
  13. Place in the proper sequence.
  14. Place all circles inside pocket to take home.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Lesson - Parable of the Treasure

VERSES:   Matthew 13:44

MEMORY VERSE:   Matthew 13:44   "Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a treasure in a field..."

BOOK TO REMEMBER:  Review all 27 books of the New Testament. Perhaps, it would help to sing The Books Of The New Testament (see March - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #3. Click on orange circle to hear tune.)

PRAYER:    Pray that we will appreciate the value of the church and love it with all of our hearts.

SPECIAL SONG:   Jesus Taught By Parable And Miracle (see March - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #4 on this blog. Click on orange circle to hear tune.)

VISUAL AID:   Draw a picture of a treasure on the whiteboard or chalkboard, or, if you have a wooden box and many shiny, gold pieces and jewels, use it as a visual aid.

  • We have studied about many parables that Jesus taught the people. We have learned about the parables of the rich fool, the sower, the mustard seed, the tares, and the leaven. (Since this is a very short lesson, the Bible teacher may want to take time to review the parables learned so far.) We have noticed that parables were like a secret code, teaching the people all about the kingdom of heaven and how to live in a pleasing way to God. But the people who were listening to Jesus, trying to catch Him saying something bad, had a hard time finding out what He was teaching because Jesus taught the people using simple things, such as farming, barns, seeds, weeds, and cooking! Parables had a secret meaning! Sometimes Jesus' disciples would ask Jesus to tell them what the parables meant, but other times, they could figure out what He was teaching.
  • This time, Jesus told a very short parable about a treasure. Do we like treasures? Of course, we do! A treasure is something very valuable and sometimes it is hidden in a secret spot! Jesus taught the people that the kingdom of heaven was like a man finding a treasure that was hidden in a field. When the man found the treasure, he hid it again, and with a happy heart, went and sold everything he had and bought the field, so the treasure would be his.
  • What does this parable mean? Jesus was teaching that the kingdom of heaven is so valuable that a person should do anything and give up everything to own it.  The church is this kingdom of heaven and Jesus taught that the church was as valuable as a treasure hidden in a field. We must sacrifice all that we have to be part of the church because its value is without measure!
"Older Student" Tips:

  • Discuss what a person might need to sacrifice or give up to become part of the church. (Family, friends, wealth, etc.)

ACTIVITY:   Parable of the Treasure
Materials needed: two 3" x 3" brown pieces of construction paper, 2" x 2" piece of gold shiny paper, tape, scissors, marker.

  1. Hand out two brown pieces of paper.
  2. Fold up 1/2" on each side on each piece of brown paper.
  3. Cut one slit on each corner of each brown paper.
  4. Fold each corner of each brown paper to form a box.
  5. Secure with tape.
  6. Hand out gold paper.
  7. Write "The kingdom of heaven is like a treasure.." and "Matthew 13:44" on the gold paper.
  8. Secure gold paper inside the smallest box with tape.
  9. Place larger brown box inside one side of smaller brown box like a lid that is sticking up. (see picture).

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Lesson - The Death Of John, The Baptizer

VERSES:   Matthew 14:1-14

MEMORY VERSE:   Matthew 14:3   "For Herod had laid hold on John, and bound him, and put him prison..."

BOOK TO REMEMBER:   Revelation.  Write "Revelation" on small slips of paper, so the students can take this last book of the New Testament home to memorize.

PRAYER:  Pray that we will always remember that God is over everything. He knows and controls all. Let us be humble and never exalt ourselves

SPECIAL SONG:   Read, Read Every Day (see February - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #1. Click on orange circle to hear tune.)  The Family In God's Plan (see March- Songs We Sing In Bible Class #4. Click on orange circle to hear tune.)

VISUAL AID:   Large Activity (see below)

  • What the Bible says is always true. God does not mince words or say only things that are sweet and lovely. God always says what He means and means what He says. The Bible is full of facts. Some facts are sweet and lovely, but some facts are harsh and cruel. The lesson today is about a cruel, selfish man who did not like truth. The truth made him angry. 
  • Good rulers, who might be called kings or pharaohs or governors or tetrarchs, were hard to find. When a man is a ruler, many times the power he has makes him think that he can do whatever he wants to do, right or wrong, without any consequences. Many times, they forget about God. Herod was a ruler who forgot about God. 
  • We have studied before that God had always said that a man should only have one wife and should love her for as long as they lived. They should not have girlfriends or boyfriends when they are married. John, the baptizer, knew God's laws. When John heard that Herod's girlfriend was his brother, Philip's wife whose name was Herodias, John told Herod that it was against God's laws for him to have Herodias. 
  • Herod and Herodias did not like John's words. Herod captured John and put him in prison. Herod even wanted to kill John, but Herod was afraid of the crowds and crowds of people who considered John a prophet, a messenger of God.
  • John was still in prison when Herod had a birthday feast for himself. On Herod's birthday, Herodias' daughter danced for Herod and Herod was pleased her dancing. In front of everyone at the feast, Herod promised the daughter whatever she wanted. Because Herodias had talked to her daughter before the feast and told her daughter what to ask for, the daughter knew exactly what to tell Herod she wanted. The daughter asked for John's head on a charger or a platter!!! What a terrible, terrible thing to ask!
  • When Herod heard what the daughter wanted, he was very sorry he had made that promise.  Because the people at the feast had heard the promise, Herod went ahead and gave her what she wanted and she gave it to her mother. Not all mothers are good mothers. What a very sad end to a prophet's life. John died because he told the truth. 
  • John's disciples came and carried away John's body, buried it, and then went and told Jesus what had happened. When Jesus heard the news, he went into a desert place, but when the people heard where Jesus had gone, they left their cities and followed Him on foot. Jesus saw a great multitude or a huge crowd of people following Him and feeling compassion toward them, He healed their sick people.
  • So, when Herod heard about Jesus and the miracles that He had been doing, he told his servants that Jesus was really John, the baptizer, who had risen from the dead and that was why He was doing mighty, powerful works. Herod was wrong. John had died and Jesus, the Son of God, was healing the people from their sicknesses.
  • Sometimes people do not like what the Bible says, but that does not mean that the Bible is not true. It only means that the people who get angry over God's Word are going to be extremely sorrowful when they die and find out that the Bible is true and they were wrong. We always need to read the Bible and obey the Bible. God is always right! 
"Older Student" Tips:
  • Read Galatians 4:16 and apply the verse to this lesson. When we tell others about Jesus or about something that is written in the Bible, should we take it personally? Are they upset with us or with God? We need to keep preaching and teaching just like John, no matter the cost.
  • Read Galatians 6:3 and James 4:10. We need to always humble ourselves in the sight of the Lord and never exalt ourselves, thinking we know everything and do not need God. Everyone needs God.
Materials needed:   9" x 12" light green construction paper, two 6" x 7" light brown construction papers, two 4" x 4" white papers, scissors, crayons, marker, glue.

  1. Hand out light green paper. This is the background.
  2. Hand out two brown papers.
  3. On one brown paper, draw John from the side view.
  4. On the other brown paper, draw Herod facing John, side view.
  5. Color both men.
  6. Write "John" on John and "Herod" on Herod.
  7. Cut out both men.
  8. Glue both men on paper, facing each other.
  9. Hand out white papers.
  10. Cut white papers into speech bubbles.
  11. On one white paper facing John, write "It is against God's law for you to have Herodias."
  12. On the other white paper, facing Herod, write "To Prison!!"
  13. Glue both speech bubbles in the middle area between the men. (see picture)
  14. Write "John Dies For Telling The Truth" and "Matthew 14:1-14" at the top of the light green paper.
  15. Above John's head, write "John spoke the Truth."
  16. Above Herod's head, write "Herod was angry at the Truth."

Monday, January 26, 2015

Lesson - Parable Of The Leaven

VERSES:   Matthew 13:33;   Luke 13:20, 21

MEMORY VERSE:   Matthew 13:33.  "...The kingdom of heaven is like unto leaven..."

BOOK TO REMEMBER:   Jude.  Write "Jude" on small slips of paper, so the students may taken them home and memorize the second to the last New Testament book.  Since this is a very short lesson, perhaps more time could be given to reciting the books of the Bible.

PRAYER:   Pray that we may be a good influence to others, always choosing the good and right thing to do, even if others want to go in another direction.

SPECIAL SONG:   Jesus Taught By Parable And Miracle (see March - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #4 on this blog. Click on orange circle to hear tune.)

VISUAL AID:   Bring leavened and unleavened bread to class and compare them to each other; pictures of or real examples of baking soda, baking powder, yeast, etc. Write the entire verse--Matthew 13:33--on the whiteboard or chalkboard, so the students may copy verse easily on their bags.


  • Do we know what 'leaven' is? There are many kinds of leavening agents, such as baking powder, baking soda, yeast, sourdough, cream of tartar, egg whites, etc. What leaven does is causes dough such as breads or cakes to change or to rise. Leaven makes flour expand or get bigger by releasing gases. That's what makes the difference in 'leavened' bread and 'unleavened' bread. Leavened bread is big, puffy, is usually soft, and most often comes in a loaf. Unleavened bread is flat and is usually harder, much like a cracker. Jesus talked about leaven to the people.
  • Speaking again in a parable, Jesus told the crowds of people who were listening something that was very familiar to them. He talked about simple things like bread and leaven. He said that the kingdom of heaven is like leaven. He told them that a woman took leaven and hid the leaven into three measures of meal until all of the meal was leavened.
  • When the woman hid leaven in those three measures of meal or flour, something was going to happen! The leaven was going to make the rest of the meal rise, too! By putting leaven into those three measures of meal, some say that a woman could make eleven loaves of bread! That a lot of bread! 
  • What does this parable mean? Jesus said that the kingdom of heaven is just like that leaven. The leaven was small, but it made the meal rise and get bigger and bigger. Jesus was saying that the church would start out very small, but it would grow until it filled up the whole world. This sounds like the parable of the mustard seed, doesn't it? From something small, great things would come!

"Older Student" Tips:

  • Contrast the parable of the leaven to the parable of the mustard seed.
  • A Christian can be a 'changing' force in the world. A Christian can stand for something good and right and can change the minds of others who might not be thinking about doing right things. Christians need to be brave, confident, and never afraid of doing things the right way, God's way.

ACTIVITY:   The Parable of the Leaven
Materials needed:  a small paper bag, a napkin or Kleenex, tape, marker.

  1. Hand out a paper bag. This is the three measures of meal.
  2. Write "The Parable of the Leaven" and "Matthew 13:33" on one side.
  3. Turn bag over.
  4. Write out "...The kingdom of heaven is like unto leaven, which a woman took and hid in three measures of meal till the whole was leavened." on the bag.
  5. At the opening of the bag, write "3 measures of meal."
  6. Hand out napkin. This is the leaven.
  7. Crumple napkin into a small ball.
  8. Tape to secure shape.
  9. Write "leaven" on the napkin.
  10. Crumple paper bag gently, but do not tear it.
  11. Uncrumple and smooth out the bag.
  12. Open bag.
  13. As the Bible teacher reads the verse and reads the word "hid", the students place their "leaven" into the "meal."
  14. That's it! 
  15. It is a fairly easy verse to memorize, if said enough times. Time permitting, let each student read the verse as the other students place their leavens in their meals.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Lesson - Parable Of The Tares

VERSES:   Matthew 13:24-30; 37-43

MEMORY VERSE:   Matthew:13:37  "He that soweth the good seed is the Son of Man."

BOOK TO REMEMBER:   3 John.  Write "3 John" on small slips of paper for the students to take home and memorize.

PRAYER:    May we be one of the righteous ones that will shine as the sun in the kingdom of our Father in Heaven. Let us always obey God and read His Word.

SPECIAL SONG:   Jesus Taught By Parable And Miracle (see March - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #4 on this blog. Click on orange circle to hear tune.)

VISUAL AID:   Draw a picture of the Activity (see below) on the whiteboard or chalkboard.

  • Jesus tells another parable and this parable is about tares. Tares are weeds. Jesus told the people a story about how the kingdom is like a man who planted good seed in his field. But, while his men slept, there was an enemy who came in and planted weeds in the wheat field and then went away. When the blades of wheat sprang up and produced fruit, there were also weeds all through the wheat field. 
  • The servants of the owner of the field went to the owner and told him what had happened. The servant asked the owner, "Didn't we sow good seed in the field? Where did all these weeds come from?" The owner of the field said, "An enemy has done this." When the servants asked the owner if he wanted them to go and gather all the weeds, the owner said, "No.  When you gather the weeds, the good wheat will be pulled up, too. Instead, let the wheat and the weeds grow together until the harvest. Then, at harvest time, I will tell the reapers or the ones gathering the wheat to gather the weeds first and bundle them up and burn them, but put the good wheat in my barn."
  • After Jesus had told many parables that day and all the crowds of people had gone home, the disciples came to Him and asked Him to tell them the meaning of the parables of the tares or weeds. 
  • Jesus said:
    • The one who planted the good seed is the Son of Man.
    • The field is the world.
    • The good seed are the children of the kingdom.
    • The tares or weeds are the children of the wicked one.
    • The enemy that planted the weeds is the devil.
    • The harvest is the end of the world.
    • The reapers are the angels.
  • Jesus went on to say that, at the end of the world, the weeds will be gathered together and burned up. He said that the Son of Man will send his angels and they will gather all the ones that offend or sin out of his kingdom and throw them into a furnace of fire. Then, all the righteous ones will shine as the sun in the kingdom of their heavenly Father.
  • Jesus ended his meaning of the parable with "He that has ears, let him hear." He wanted everyone who had ears to listen to the parable and beware of the bad things that would happen to those who did not obey Him. He also wanted the ones who obeyed him, the righteous ones, to know that they would have a reward in heaven.
"Older Student" Tips:
  • Talk about how people who are not obeying God do not realize that they are in danger because they think they are having a good time enjoying the pleasures of this life. There is more to life than this world. We need to always obey God and do those good things because, at the end of this life, there will be a time when the disobedient will suffer the consequences of a worldly life. They will have no treasure in heaven like the righteous.
ACTIVITY:   The Parable of the Tares
Materials needed:   9" x 12" brown construction paper, 6" x 12" dark green construction paper, 5" x 12" light green construction paper, scissors, staples, stapler, marker, crayons.

  1. Hand out brown construction paper.
  2. Fold up 2" at the bottom of the brown paper. This is the soil.
  3. Hand out dark green construction paper.
  4. Fold up 2" at the bottom of the dark green paper. This is the good seed.
  5. Hand out light green construction paper.
  6. Fold up 2 " at the bottom of the light green paper. This is the tares or weeds.
  7. Tuck dark green paper inside light green paper.
  8. Tuck light green paper inside brown paper.
  9. Staple at the bottom of all three papers, securing all three layers.
  10. Cut through both green papers like grass. 
  11. Write "The Parable Of The Tares" and "Matthew 13:24-30; 37-43" at the top of the brown paper.
  12. Write "Man who planted good seed is the Son of man," "Field is the world," "Good seed are children of the kingdom," "Tares are the children of the wicked one," "The enemy is the devil," "The harvest is the end of the world," and "The reapers are the angels" on the brown paper.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Lesson - Parable Of The Mustard Seed

VERSES:   Matthew 13:31-32;   Mark 4:30-31;  Luke 13:18-19

MEMORY VERSE:   Matthew 13:31.  "...The kingdom of heaven is like to a grain of mustard seed..."

BOOK TO REMEMBER:   2 John.  Write "2 John" on small slips of paper, so the students may memorize another New Testament book at home.

PRAYER:  Thank God for the good messages He inspired men to write in the Bible.

SPECIAL SONG:   Jesus Taught By Parable And Miracle (see March - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #4 on this blog. Click on orange circle to hear tune.)

VISUAL AID:   Actual mustard seed or pictures of mustard seed and mustard seed trees.


  • As we have been studying about Jesus and the things that He said and did while He lived here on the earth, we are learning about some of the parables that He told the people. Parables were like a secret code. They were stories about earthly things, but also had a spiritual meaning. Jesus told the people a story about the things they knew like farming or cleaning or a treasure, and while it seemed to the people who were listening that He was simply telling a story, it meant much more. Later, Jesus would tell the spiritual part or what the parable really meant to the disciples. There were Jewish leaders who were always listening to Jesus, hoping to catch Him in something they could report His teaching as something bad, but Jesus only told good things.
  • Jesus told the parable about the kingdom of heaven being like a grain of mustard seed. He said that a man took mustard seed and planted it in his field. The mustard seed is one of the smallest, tiniest of all seeds, but when it grows, it is huge! It grows and grows and grows until it grows into a tree where birds come and live in its branches.
  • What was the secret meaning behind this parable? Jesus said the kingdom of heaven or the church was like this mustard seed. It would start out so very tiny, but it would grow and grow and grow until it filled the whole earth!
"Older Student" Tips:
  • Definition of 'parable' - a simple story used to illustrate a moral or spiritual lesson. 
  • Mustard seeds are only about 1-2 mm in size. Mustard trees can grow up to 20 feet high. 
ACTIVITY:   Parable of the Mustard Seed
Materials needed:  9" x 12" blue construction paper, 4" x 9" brown construction paper, 4" x 12" green construction paper, scrap of white construction paper, stickers of birds or make your own with colorful paper that is found around the house , kitchen, or magazines (I cut circles out of a leftover bulletin board border.), glue, markers, crayons, scissors.
  1. Hand out blue paper. This is the background.
  2. Hand out brown paper.
  3. Cut a tree trunk out of the brown paper by cutting two curved lines. This is the trunk
  4. Glue trunk to bottom middle of blue paper.
  5. Hand out green paper.
  6. Fold green paper.
  7. Cut hearts out of green paper. These are the leaves.
  8. Glue leaves on top of the tree trunk.
  9. Glue small square of white paper on blue paper.
  10. Write "Size of mustard seed" on white paper.
  11. Draw tiny dot on white paper. This is the mustard seed.
  12. With red crayon, draw an arrow from white square to tree.
  13. Write "Size of Mustard Tree" in the middle of the tree trunk.
  14. Write "PARABLE OF THE MUSTARD SEED" at the top of the blue paper.
  15. Write "Matthew 13:31, 32" at the bottom of the blue paper.
  16. Hand out "bird materials."
  17. Cut out two birds out of colorful magazines, empty boxes, discarded shiny paper, etc. 
  18. Glue birds to the leaves in the tree.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Lesson - Peace, Be Still

VERSES:   Mark 4:35-41;   Matthew 8:23-27;   Luke 8:22-25

MEMORY VERSE:   Mark 4:39   "...Peace, be still. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm."

BOOK TO REMEMBER:   1 John.  Write "1 John" on small slips of paper to send home with the students to memorize.

PRAYER:   Thank God for being a great God who has complete control over everything.

SPECIAL SONG:   Jesus Taught By Parable And Miracle (see March - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #4 on this blog. Click on orange circle to hear tune.)

VISUAL AID:   TV Box (see February - Visual Aid #1 - TV Box for directions), map showing the Sea of Galilee.


  • Jesus performed many miracles while He was here on this earth. He healed the sick, the lame, the blind, the ones who could not speak, and many others. He also had control over things like the weather and the sea as we will study abut today.
  • Jesus had been speaking to the people in parables from a boat by the seaside in the daytime, but when the evening came, He told His disciples that they should go over to the other side of the sea or lake.  When the crowds of people were sent away, the ship started sailing with other little boats across the water. As they were out in the deep water, there was a great storm of wind that rose up. The waves were high and they beat into the ship so that it was almost full of water! Jesus had gone down into the bottom of the ship and had fallen asleep on a pillow when the disciples came in and woke Him up. They said to Him, "Don't you care that we are all going to die?" 
  • Jesus got up and rebuked the wind and said to it, "Peace, be still." And the wind stopped! Just like that! The Bible says that there was a great calm or it was peaceful over the sea. There was and still power in Jesus' words! Jesus said to His disciples, "Why are you so fearful? How is it that you have no faith?"
  • The disciples greatly feared and said among themselves, "What kind of man is this that even the wind and the sea obey Him?"
  • Jesus could control the wind and the sea and the sicknesses that people had because He was the Son of God! When He performed a miracle, everyone knew that what He did was something a simple human could not do.

"Older Student" Tips:

  • The Sea of Galilee had other names, such as the Lake of Gennesaret, and the Sea of Tiberias. These are all the same body of water.
  • The Sea of Galilee is approximately 64 square miles, 13 miles long and 8 miles wide. It lies 680 feet below sea level.

ACTIVITY:   "Peace, be still."
Materials needed:   12" x 18" blue construction paper, 4" x 6" brown construction paper, 4" x 6" white construction paper, 1/2" x 6" brown construction paper, tape, glue, scissors, crayons.

  1. Hand out blue paper. This is the water.
  2. Fold the blue paper accordion -style, lengthwise. (Fold every couple of inches, back and forth.)
  3. Staple both ends of blue paper to secure folds.
  4. Hand out large brown paper. This is the boat.
  5. Draw, cut, and color boat.
  6. Hand out long strip of brown paper. This is the mast.
  7. Fold strip in half, so it will support the sail.
  8. Staple strip in middle of top of boat.
  9. Hand out white paper. This is the sail.
  10. Fold white paper in half.
  11. Cut at a diagonal. Save leftover white paper for people.
  12. Open white paper.
  13. Tape on mast.
  14. Draw Jesus alone.
  15. Color and cut out Jesus.
  16. Draw two or three disciples together.
  17. Color and cut out disciples.
  18. Make one slit in boat on each top side. (Two cuts total)
  19. Slip Jesus in first slip.
  20. Tape Jesus on back.
  21. Slip the disciples in the other slit.
  22. Tape the disciples on the back to secure.
  23. From leftover white paper, cut out an oval.
  24. Write "Peace, be still." on the oval.
  25. Tape words beside Jesus.
  26. Write "Jesus Calms The Storm" and "Mark 4" on the boat.
  27. Place boat inside of water.

Lesson - The Centurion's Servant Is Healed

VERSES:    Luke 7:2-10;   Matthew 8:2-13

MEMORY VERSE:   Luke 7:9   "...I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel."

BOOK TO REMEMBER:   2 Peter.  Write "2 Peter" on small slips of paper and hand out to students at the end of class, so they may memorize the book at home.

PRAYER:   Pray for the ones who you and your students know that are sick.

SPECIAL SONG:   Jesus Taught By Parable And Miracle (see March - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #4 on this blog. Click on orange circle to hear tune.)

VISUAL AID:   Large Activity


  • As Jesus was traveling about from city to city, He entered into a city called Capernaum where there was a centurion who was looking for him. A centurion was a commander over a hundred soldiers in the Roman army. He was looking for Jesus because he had a servant who was very dear to him and the servant was so sick that he was going to die. When the centurion heard about Jesus healing people who were sick, he sent word to the elders and pleaded with them to ask Jesus to come and heal his sick servant.
  • The elders went to Jesus in a hurry and asked Him to heal the centurion's servant because the centurion was different than other officers in the Roman army. This centurion loved the Jewish nation and had even built a synagogue! The elders said that the centurion was worthy of his request.
  • So, Jesus went with them to the centurion's house, but when Jesus was not far from the house, the centurion sent his friends to Jesus to tell Him not to trouble himself by going into the house. He said that he did not think he was worthy to come to Jesus himself, but to just say the word and his servant would be healed. The centurion believed that Jesus did not even need to see his servant to heal him, but that Jesus' words could heal his servant. The centurion said that he was also a man who had men under his authority who obeyed his commands. He could tell a soldier to come and he would come, or tell him to go and he would go. The centurion said these things because he believed that Jesus did not even need to touch his servant to heal him, but only say a word and Jesus' will would be done.
  • When Jesus heard what the centurion had to say, He marveled or was astonished and surprised! Jesus turned around to the people who were following Him and said that He had not found anyone in all of Israel who had as great faith as the centurion. Then, the centurion's friends went back to the house and found the sick servant completely well! Jesus could heal with His words just like the centurion believed. 
  • Jesus taught the people by parables, by miracles, and by commands. He taught in many ways, so the people would believe that He was the Son of God.
"Older Student" Tips:
  • Bible definition of faith? Read Hebrews 11:1. Can we please God with or without faith? Read Hebrews 11:6.
  • Definition of centurion.  (An officer in the Roman army who had authority over a hundred soldiers.)
Materials needed:   6" x 18" light brown construction paper, 3" x 4" tan construction paper, 3" x 3" light brown construction paper, two 1/2" x 12" strips of any color construction paper, tape, crayons, marker, scissors.

  1. Hand out 6" x 18" light brown paper.
  2. Draw a door and windows on light brown paper.
  3. Cut two sides of door, so that the door opens.
  4. Fold door back to create "hinges."
  5. Cut windows out completely.
  6. On outside of paper, write "The Centurion's House" and "Luke 7:2-10".
  7. Turn light brown paper over and draw the inside of the house including the sick servant laying on a bed and the centurion close by the servant.
  8. Tape two edges of light brown paper to form a box. This is the Centurion's house. Note: When the student looks through the window, they should be able to see the sick servant laying on his bed.
  9. Hand out small light brown paper.
  10. Draw, color, and cut out two or three friends of the Centurion. 
  11. Hand out tan paper.
  12. Draw, color, and cut out Jesus and a crowd of people.
  13. Write "Jesus" on the picture of Jesus.
  14. Hand out two long strips of paper.
  15. Fold each strip in half, then in half again.
  16. Tape, forming into two triangles.
  17. Tape the Centurion's friends and Jesus and the crowd on each of the long strips.
  18. Set up all three pieces to tell story.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Extra Helps #14 - Choosing A Lesson

Deciding what to teach students from week to week may be a problem for some Bible teachers. Some may open the Bible, which is a very good start, but may choose their lesson at the place where the Bible falls open. Each week's lesson is not a 'planned' lesson, but a completely 'random' one. 

Some may select a lesson by what suits the Bible teacher on a particular day; for example, if it is a rainy day, the Bible teacher may decide to teach "Noah and the Ark", yet the previous lesson might have been "Jesus Is Baptized By John." Is this the best way to select a Bible lesson? 

Does it matter which lesson is taught? Must there be an order in which to teach? Like many things in the world, there is a good way and a better way. If we were reading a children's book, a recipe, an instruction book, would we not decide to read in some consistent order? While it is commendable that the Bible teacher is opening up the Bible to teach, there is still a better way to choose a lesson or a series of lessons.

Some congregations are blessed with strong and knowledgeable leadership, men or possibly elders who decide what Bible material should be taught (Acts 20:28), but you may find yourself in a position at some point in your life where you are the one who is choosing lesson material, and it is beneficial to be prepared.

Keeping lessons in a relative order helps the student with the complete story of the Bible, one that makes sense and is understandable, learning that there is a sequence of events. Select a section, perhaps ten to twelve lessons at a time, so that the Bible is broken up into topics and the students may digest a portion at a time, yet keeping the whole story intact. For example, the simple act of choosing either the Old or New Testament from which to study is a great beginning. Then, choosing either a Bible book (Genesis, Ruth, Daniel), or topics such as "Heroes of the Old Testament," "The Whole Armor of God," or "Parables of Christ" will give a little continuity to the lessons. 

Some Bible teachers choose to teach the Old Testament stories on Sunday mornings and the New Testament lessons during their mid-week Bible class. This is a good, consistent method and it gives the student a good overall picture of the Bible.

So, put thought and prayer into how you choose your Bible lessons and may we always strive for the 'better' way!

Friday, January 16, 2015

Lesson - Parable Of The Sower

VERSES:   Luke 8:4-15

MEMORY VERSE:   Luke 8:11   "Now the parable is this: The seed is the Word of God."

BOOK TO REMEMBER:   1 Peter.   Write "1 Peter" on small slips of paper for the students to take home and memorize.

PRAYER:   Pray that we treat and think about everyone just the same. 

SPECIAL SONG:   Jesus Taught By Parable And Miracle (see March - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #4 on this blog. Click on orange circle to hear tune.)

VISUAL AID:    Large Activity (see below). 

  • The people came out of their cities and gathered together to hear what Jesus had to say. Jesus told them a parable or a story with a spiritual lesson. 
  • Jesus told them that a sower or farmer went out into the field and sowed seed. They did not have tractors or trucks or 'planting' machines back then because they had not been invented yet. So a man would go out into his field with a sack over his shoulder and, putting a little of the seed in his hand, would spread the seed on the ground. This was called 'sowing' or planting. Let's try it ourselves right now. Let's pretend we have our sack on our shoulder and then we spread the seed over the ground with our hand out like this. (Demonstrate). But there was a small problem: Not all of the seed went where it was supposed to go which was in the good, rich soil.
    • When the sower spread his seed out on the ground, some of the seed fell by the wayside where it was walked on and the birds came and ate it.
    • Some of the seed fell on top of the rocks where there was just a little bit of dirt. The seed grew very quickly, but because there was not enough moisture or water, the seed withered and died.
    • Some of the seed fell in the thorns and bushes. The thorns grew quickly and choked out the good seed.
    • But there was good seed that fell on the good ground. It grew up and produced fruit one hundred times over what the sower had planted! This was the good ground, the place where the sower or farmer wanted his seed to grow.
  • Jesus told the people, "He that has ears, let him hear." Who didn't have ears to hear Jesus' parable? Everyone had ears! Jesus meant that the people should listen to the story, but His disciples were confused. They asked Him, "What does this parable mean?"
  • Jesus then explained patiently. He said that, when He spoke in parables, that His disciples would know the mysteries of the kingdom of God, but other people would not understand what he was talking about except telling the people stories.
    • Then, Jesus said that the 'seed' in the parable was the Word of God.
    • The seed that fell by the wayside were the people who heard the Word, but then the devil came and took the Word out of their hearts, so that the people did not believe and were not saved.
    • The seed that was on the rock were the ones that heard the Word of God, received the Word with joy and enthusiasm, but they did not have any roots and when temptations came, they fell away.
    • The seed that fell among the thorns were those who heard the Word of God, and went out into the world, but were choked out by the cares, riches and pleasures of life, and did not produce any perfect fruit.
    • But, Jesus said, that the seed that fell on the good ground or on the good and honest heart, heard the word, kept it, and, with patience, produced much fruit.
  • Jesus taught the people by parables, by miracles, by command, and by many other ways. He even teaches us today every time we read the Bible! We need to read the Bible every day. We can read it in the morning, or when we come home from school, or before we go to bed or all of those times. It doesn't matter when we read. We only need to make sure that we are reading!
"Older Student" Tips:

  • Every time we read this parable, we need to remember that the 'seed' is the Word of God and the parable will make sense to us just like it did to Jesus' disciples.
  • There will always be seed to sow, and there will always be soils that will receive the seed, but sometimes it just doesn't seem like there are very many sowers or farmers to sow the seed. If we tell others what we know about God and Bible, we will be planting the seed, too, then there will be more sowers planting the God's Word in the hearts of others. God will be pleased.

ACTIVITY:   The Parable Of The Sower
Materials needed:  small lunch sack, 2" x 6" light brown strip, 5" x 5" dark brown square, light brown scrap paper, 3" x 5" dark brown rectangle, scrap light green paper, 3" x 5 light brown construction paper, .5" x 4" dark brown scrap paper, 2" x 3" dark green paper, 2" x 2" dark green paper, Bible sticker, marker, scissors, tape, glue.

  1. Hand out small lunch sack. This is the sower's sack.
  2. Draw dark lines on small sack (see picture).
  3. Write "Parable of the Sower" and "Luke 8:9-15" on the bottom of the lunch sack.
  4. Cut on lines of sack.
  5. Open sack.
  6. Tape top to make handle.
  7. Hand out 2" x 6" light brown strip. This is the wayside.
  8. Write "Wayside" on the light brown strip.
  9. Draw little seeds on the wayside.
  10. Hand out 5" x 5" dark brown square. This is the bird.
  11. Draw and cut out a small circle (for the head), an oval (for the body), feathers, and legs)
  12. Assemble bird.
  13. Glue bird.
  14. Hand out 3" x 5" dark brown rectangle. This is the rock.
  15. Round edges of rectangle.
  16. Draw top of rock.
  17. Write "Rock" on the rock.
  18. Hand out light green scrap.
  19. Cut like grass.
  20. Glue pale grass on top of rock. This is the withered seed.
  21. Hand out 3" x 5" light brown paper. This is the 'thorns.'
  22. Fold paper in half.
  23. Fold in half again.
  24. Unfold once.
  25. Draw zig-zagged line on the top of the folded paper.
  26. Cut zig-zag out, but do not cut the folds on each end. This is what keeps the thorns together.
  27. Fold like a triangle and secure with tape.
  28. Write "Thorns" on the inside bottom of the thorns.
  29. Glue leftover light green triangles from the Rock's grass to the bottom of the thorns. This is the withered seed.
  30. Hand out .5" x 4" dark brown paper. This is the good soil.
  31. Cut a small wiggle at the top of the dark brown paper to resemble a furrow.
  32. Hand out 2" x 3" dark green paper. This is the good seed that produced much fruit.
  33. Fold dark green paper in half.
  34. Cut dark green paper like grass.
  35. Glue to top of good soil.
  36. Write "Good Soil" on dark brown paper.
  37. Hand out 2" x 2" dark green paper.
  38. Cut into a circle. This is the good seed.
  39. Apply Bible sticker to the bottom of the green seed.
  40. Write "The seed is the" on the green seed.
  41. Place all soils inside the sower's sack to take home.