VERSES: Acts 16:9-15
MEMORY VERSE: Acts 16:9 "...Come over into Macedonia and help us."
BOOK TO REMEMBER: 2 Thessalonians. Write "2 Thessalonians" on small slips of paper and hand out to the students at the end of class, so they may memorize another New Testament book.
PRAYER: Pray for opportunities to do good to other people and then do good.
SPECIAL SONG: Be Patient And Kind (see April 2014 - Lesson - Joseph Meets His Brothers Who Hated Him on this blog. Click on orange circle for tune.)
VISUAL AID: Bible map, white board to write on which to make small marks (see "Older Student" Tips), and Large Activity (see below)
- On a night when Paul, Silas, and Timothy were traveling to Troas on their journey to teach and preach to people about Jesus, Paul had a vision. A vision is different than a dream because the person must be asleep to have a dream, but not necessarily so with a vision. There was always a message from God with either a vision or a dream, and that is how it was when Paul had his vision. From a far away place called Macedonia, a man begged him to come over into Macedonia and help them. After Paul had seen the vision, they immediately made preparations to go to Macedonia. They were convinced that the Lord had called them to preach the gospel there.
- Luke, also, who was a believer in Jesus, a doctor, and the writer of the book of Acts, traveled with them from the city of Troas..(Show this part of their journey on the map.) From Troas, their journey took them to the city of Samothracia which was on an island, then to Neapolis. From Neapolis, they traveled on to Philippi, an important city in Macedonia. There, in Philippi, they stayed for a few days. On the sabbath day, Paul and the men went out of the city to the riverside where there were women praying and worshiping God. Paul, Luke, and others sat down by the river and began speaking to the women.
- There was a certain woman named Lydia, who was also praying there by the river that day. Lydia was from the city of Thyatira (show on map), sold purple fabric, and was a worshiper of God. As she listened to Paul and the ones preaching and teaching, the Lord opened her heart, so she would pay close attention to those things that Paul was teaching. We know that Lydia paid very close attention to their teaching because she was baptized, and not only was Lydia baptized, but all of those in her household were baptized that very day.
- After Lydia was baptized, she spoke to Paul and the men. She said, "If you have judged me to be faithful to the Lord, come to my house and stay with us." She was very hospitable and inviting, so they went to her house and stayed.
- While we mentioned that the difference between a dream and a vision was that, with a dream, the person had to be asleep, but with a vision the person was usually awake. God talked to people in visions and dreams before the Bible was written, but now we have the Bible and there is no need for special dreams or visions. The Bible is all we need today (2 Timothy 3:16, 17). If God only spoke to a few people today through dreams and visions and not the rest of us, then God would be a respecter of persons, which the Bible says He is not (Acts 10:34; Romans 2:11).
- Read Acts 16:10-13 out loud. Make a small mark on the white board every time the word "us" or "we" are read. What does this mean? It means that Luke was with Paul on his second missionary journey. Luke is writing the book of Acts and, while he had not written in the first person before, including himself in the events, he is doing it in these few verses. Luke is traveling with Paul as he continues to write the book of Acts.
- There must not have been a synagogue in Philippi because the believers were worshiping by the river.
- Christians should be hospitable people, sharing their food and their home with other Christians. Read Romans 12:13. A qualification or requirement to be an elder is to be hospitable. Read 1 Timothy 3:2.
Materials needed: 9" x 12" light blue construction paper, 4 1/2" x 9" brown construction paper, 2" x 9" green construction paper, 6" x 9" blue cellophane, scraps of different colored paper, seven or eight 1" tan circles (I used seven), glue, marker, crayons, scissors, stapler, staples.
- Hand out light blue paper. This is the background.
- Hand out brown paper.
- Tear one long edge of brown paper. This is the land.
- Glue land 3" from the bottom of the light blue paper.
- Hand out blue cellophane paper.
- Fold cellophane in and out like an accordion. This is the river.
- Staple cellophane along three edges of blue construction paper. This should form a "pocket" for Paul and Lydia to stand in the river.
- Hand out green paper.
- Cut or snip 1" all along one edge of green paper with scissors. This is the grass.
- Glue small uncut edge of green grass behind the top edge of the blue cellophane. This should form a small "pocket" for the people to stand in. (Do not glue the green cut edges because the people should be able to "stand" in the grass.)
- Hand out tan circles and scraps of colored paper.
- Cut seven or eight rectangles. These are the people's clothing.
- Glue one tan circle on top of one rectangle to form a person. Lydia could be the purple clothed person since she sold purple fabric.
- Finish all people.
- Color the people's faces and draw arms.
- Write the people's names on the bottom of the clothing. For example, "Paul, Silas, Luke, Timothy, Lydia, Woman, Woman."
- People should NOT be glued to the background, so they can be moved around the picture.
- Write "Lydia Is Baptized" and "Acts 16:9-18" at the top of the blue background/
- Write things that are known about Lydia in crayon in empty blue space, such as "In Philippi" "seller of purple" "household was baptized, too" and "by the river." More facts may be added
- Students may tell the story of how the women were praying beside the the river, then the group of men join them. As Paul teaches, Lydia wants to baptized. Paul baptizes her in the river.
- Make sure everyone has their people before they leave class!