Children’s Sermons

Taste of Moses

I’m always looking for new ways to introduce a Bible story. One of our most successful to date has been “eating our way through a story.” Here’s how we covered the story of Moses.

Exodus 1:22-2:4 – Pharaoh orders execution of children, so Moses hidden in a basket and floated on the Nile (Weave a basket out of Twizzlers Pull and Peel)

Exodus 2:5-10 – Moses rescued by Pharaoh’s daughter and raised to be a prince of Egypt (Chocolate Coin)

Exodus 2:11-17 – Moses learns his true identity and kills an Egyptian slave driver, forcing him to flee Egypt, he becomes a shepherd (Goat’s Milk – available at most grocery stores)

Exodus 3:1-10 – While tending his sheep God speaks to Moses through a burning bush (Hot Sauce)

Exodus 7:14-17, 8:1-2, 8:16-17, 9:2-4, 9:8-9, 9:18-19, 10:1-4, 10:21-23, 11:1,4-7 – Moses returns to Egypt to free the Israelites, God accomplishes this through the 10 Plagues of Egypt (Dark Chocolate Chips -Bitter and sweet – They suffered with the plagues but had hope of release)

Exodus 14:10-16 – Moses leads the people out of Egypt and to the Red Sea, when trapped by Pharaoh’s army God parts the waters (Red Kool-Aid Koolers)

Exodus 19:7-9, 20:1-17 – Israelites camp in the desert and receive a gift from God of the 10 Commandments (Dinner Rolls – The Israelites called God’s word the bread of life)

Deuteronomy 27:1-3, 34:4 – Moses sees, but never enters the promise land, the land of Milk and Honey (honey)

Read more

Trapped In Sin

Here’s an object lesson used for elementary aged kids, but it could easily be adapted to older students. It does very well at getting and holding their attention. I’m sorry I don’t have any pics or video of it. Maybe if anyone finds it on here and uses it, you could send me some. Especially video. (hint, hint) Allow yourself plenty of preparation time for this one.

You’ll need to select one of your students ahead of time to assist you in this lesson, and rehearse it well. I used a boy, but a girl could do it also. Make sure the child doesn’t have claustrophobia, for reasons which will become apparent.

When starting the lesson, ask the kids if they would like to have a magic show today. They’ll say yes. Have your helpers bring out a trunk big enough to hold a kid, and set it up front where everyone can see it. Say, “Would you like to see someone escape from this trunk?” You’ll really have their attention now. Ask your selected student to come forward. Then say, “I’m going to put “Billy” in this trunk and lock it. Then he will attempt to escape.” Open the trunk and tilt it forward to show that it is a regular trunk with no trap doors or escape hatches. Then ask Billy, “Are you nervous?” He should say something like, “A little, but I’ve seen this on TV before. It looks easy.” Then say, “OK, then, let’s get you inside.” Billy steps into the trunk and lays or crouches down. You then close the lid over him, and lock it with a padlock. Then say, “OK, in just a few moments, Billy will escape.” The child should then move around inside the trunk, making sounds like he is trying to get out. After a few seconds, ask, “Billy, aren’t you going to escape.” He keeps moving around and says, “I’m trying.” Wait a few more seconds and say, “Come on, Billy, we’re all waiting out here.” Billy should then stop struggling and say, “I thought I could get out by myself, but I can’t. I need help.” At this point, say, “Kids, this is exactly what the devil does to us. He makes sin look like so much fun, and that we can get out just as easily as we got in. Billy got into the trunk very easily, but now he’s locked in and can’t get out. That’s what sin is like. It’s so easy to get into, but we can’t get ourselves out of it.” Then read John 3:16 to the class. Say, “God knew that we were going to be trapped in sin, just like Billy is trapped in this trunk. He also knew that we would need someone to release us from sin’s hold. That’s why He sent His Son, Jesus, to earth to provide us with a way of escape. All we have to do is ask Jesus to release us from sin, and come to live in our heart.” Then turn to the trunk and say, “Billy, would you like to be set free?” He should say yes. Reach into your pocket and pull out a key attached to a large keyring that says “Jesus”. Hold it up for the kids to see and say, “Jesus is the key that sets us free.” Then unlock the padlock, open the trunk and let the child out. Ask the class to applaud him for asking Jesus to set him free.

[Ed. Note: Okay, I may be stating the obvious, but use your best judgment here. We don’t want to be locking youth in boxes that A.) have no holes from breathing and B.) we’ve lost the key to. The “trap” concept is good, but if you can, find a better “trap” than a trunk. My suggestion would be a child’s playpen that you can turn upside and sit on top of or something similar.] Read more

Hatred

Materials: magic marker, balloon, paper clip, some tape and a paper bag.

First you need to blow up the balloon and write a name on it. Then put a few pieces of tape on the back so the children can not see it. Then unfold the paper clip and ask the children to say a few nice things to the person. After each nice word poke the tape. After they have said a few nice words get them to say a mean word and when they say something mean do not poke the tape poke the balloon so it pops. Then tell the children how saying mean things to other people is making them feel bad and sad.
Then read Luke 6:27-31.
When I did this in my church even the adults liked it and thought it was a very good message.

Read more

What Is It?

I have 4 objects in this bag
I am going to describe them one at a time and when I am done describing each one I want you to tell me what it was that I described.

Someone who tells you that you are loved
Someone who takes care of your needs
They live with you
-Parents (picture or doll)

This next object is very forgiving
It greets you the same every time you come back to it
It too lives in homes
-Dog (stuffed animal)

It is alive
It is found where people care because It is black and white and red all over
-A sun burned Zebra (picture of zebra with red coloring)

I have not only described 3 different objects, but those same descriptions apply to my last object.
Review the previous characteristics, let them guess and then pull out the last object
-A Bible

Read more

Parable of the Sower

To make the parable of the sower more exciting, I made it edible. I made a dirt cake from pudding and crushed Oreos, which served as the ground. For the thorny ground I added stick pretzels. For the rocks I scooped out most of the pudding and filled the space with peanut M&Ms. For the path I cleared a, well, path, of Oreos and left it plain pudding. The seeds were candy corn. I told the story, and then the kids each took a candy corn. We prayed that we would be fertile ground for God’s word, and then we ate our lesson! Anything with food always works…

Read more

Faith Is…

Visual Aids: One or two optical illusion posters — particularly the 3-D posters that you have to unfocus your eyes in order to see it correctly. Try to find one where the 3-D images is either Jesus or the Bible. For children especially, since they will not likely be able to see the 3-D picture, it is helpful to start off with a simpler optical illusion.

Good morning boys and girls. How are you today? It’s great to see you here. You know, I bet when you were coming to church this morning, you probably saw some things outside as you drove along in the car. Can you tell me some of the things that you saw? [Allow responses]. You know, all of you had to look through the window of your car in order to see those things, didn’t you? That’s right. You don’t look at windows, do you? Of course not, you look past the window to see other things.

[Pull out the 3-D puzzle, or the simpler puzzle] Now, boys and girls, what I have here is kind of like a car window. When you look at this picture, all you see are a bunch of squiggly lines. But you’re not supposed to look at this picture. You’ve got to look through it, or past it in order to see the picture of [the Bible, Jesus, or whatever the 3-D image is]. Does anybody see the image? [Use your discretion in allowing time and responses to this question].

Boys and girls, this is a picture of [the Bible, Jesus, etc.]. But you cannot see it unless you look past it, and that’s difficult to do. Your eyes play tricks on you and keep you from seeing the real image. You know what? Faith is the ability to see past what’s in front of your eyes and to see God and His image. The book of Hebrews says that, “Faith is substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”

What does that mean for us? Boys and girls, that means that if you have faith, you don’t look at the things you can see on this earth, like money and problems and things like that. You look past those things until you see the image of God and how He is working behind the scenes to help you and love you and take care of you. God loves you. So, remember, the next time you are afraid, or mad, or sick, or out of money, or in trouble, look past what you see with your eyes and focus on God. He loves you and He will take care of you. Just have faith in Him.

[Close in prayer.] Read more

Odd One Out

Have a selection of several types of balls available.
(Tennis, squash, golf, football, pool, rugby)

Start by holding up a ball, say a tennis ball, and explain what the ball is like. (It has a soft cover, not too hard, round)

Invite a youngster to come and hold the ball.
Do the same for all the other balls leaving the rugby ball until last.

Then ask which one is the odd one out. Usually they will choose the rugby ball. Ask them why. Again, they will say, ‘because it is a different shape to all the other balls’.

Then go on to explain that each ball could be considered the odd one out because they are all different to the others.
The tennis ball has a soft cover, the golf ball has a hard cover, the colour may be different and so on.

Talk about the fact that sometimes we treat people who are different to us badly. We call people names because they are not like us. But because God made us that way, we should treat people with respect and honour. We are precious to God.

Read more

I’m In God’s Hands

Isaiah 41:10

Preparation: Beforehand, prepare at least two things to happen “magically” when you point a remote control in that direction. For instance, get the youth group to stand in unison when you point the remote at them, and then sit back down when you press the remote. Get the person in charge of the lights to dim and brighten the lights when you point the remote at them. Get the pianist/organist or other instrumentalist to play a simple measure when you point the remote at them.

Visual Aids: One or two remote controls

Good morning boys and girls. [Pull out the remote control.] Can anyone tell me what I have in my hands? [Wait for responses.] OK, would you tell me all the different kinds of things you can do with a remote control? [Wait for various responses. Encourage them to move away from just TV controls, and into answers pertaining to remote-control toys, garage door openers, etc.] Wow, so you can do a lot of things with remote controls, can’t you? Well, I have a special remote control here that does some extra special things. [Pull out second remote.] It only does a couple of things, but they’re really special. [Now, show them how your remote performs the tasks that you set up to happen in advance.] See, you can do some really amazing things with this remote control. But, you know, what if I set this remote over here by itself. Could the remote do those special things? [Wait for the “NO’s” to die down.] Why not? [Wait for responses.] A remote control can’t do the special things it’s supposed to do unless someone holds it in his/her hands. Did you know that you are like a remote control? You are. God has some special things for you to do in your life — some really special things. But the only way you can do them is if you are in God’s hand. To do what God wants us to do, we must place ourselves in God’s hands. To do what God wants us to do, we must what? “Place ourselves in God’s hands.” Let’s pray now that today we would put our lives in God’s hands so that He can use us to do some very special things this week. [Read Scripture verse where appropriate.]

Read more

The Bridge to Heaven

Note: This is not original with me, but I do not remember the source. I’ve used it in various groups for about 10 years.

Object: Illustrate John 14:6 – Jesus as the only way to heaven. What you’re going to do is a live presentation of the Bridge to Heaven tract.

Equipment:
• one sturdy plank 2”x6” or better about 12-14 feet long (if this is a bit beat up all the better to represent Jesus’ condition before He was nailed to the cross);
• two pieces of scrap lumber—one sturdy (like the plank) but only 3-4 feet and another long enough (12 ft.) but very weak (easily breakable works best visually);
• two picnic tables (or other sturdy platforms);
• a banner or poster with John 14:6 printed on it; and
• nails & hammer, or a staple gun, or even just push pins.

Volunteer: I never select this child at random. He or she (I have used both sexes successfully) is fully aware of the steps involved, and what’s anticipated. I try to select someone who is lightweight and somewhat outgoing, but uppermost is safety first!

Set-up: The tables are placed end to end, but 8-9 feet apart. All the other equipment is handy but out of the way. (I like them out of sight when possible).

Presentation: (You talk your volunteer and the audience through each of the following steps.)
• Designate one table as Heaven the other as Earth; the gap between the tables is Hell.
• Have the “volunteer” human get on the table Earth.
• His goal is to get to Heaven without falling into the pit of Hell.
• First have him try to get to Heaven on his own by jumping – they refuse. (The distance is usually overwhelming anyway, but for fear of real injury by missing and striking the Heaven table, the volunteer is pre-briefed to refuse to try.)
• Show that many false religions have tried to bridge the gap using the two inadequate lumber props.

I usually use the short one first – “See it gets you part way there.” Hang it so it barely balances on the table and instruct the human to use it like a spring board. The human is no less inclined to make the journey. When done place the board in Hell.

Next comes the long, weak board – “It bridges the gap just fine,” but will bend easily toward Hell with a little foot pressure. Again the human is unable to make the journey. When done again place the board in Hell.

Now lay the plank on the Earth. Jesus came to the Earth to live with, identify with man, and save mankind. Present the Gospel while nailing the banner/poster to the plank. End with something like: “While here he promised salvation and that there was only one way.” Reveal the poster, reciting the verse, while placing the plank to bridge the gap.

Without instruction your human willingly crosses to Heaven.

Always end with an invitation.

Afterwards: Remain near the props when the audience is dismissed. Invariably some will want to try as well. I always begin cleaning up right away and refuse to allow them to try the stunt, but I do challenge them personally about their acceptance of Christ as Savior.

Read more

Mirror, Mirror

Visual Aids: A mirror that is large enough for everyone to see but small enough for you to hold.

Good morning boys and girls. How are you today? It’s great to see you here. You all look so nice. The guys are so handsome, and the girls are so beautiful. Have you looked in the mirror lately to see how nice you really look? [Pull out mirror]. This is the mirror I like to look in every morning to make sure I look OK. Now, I want you to tell me what you see in this mirror when I hold it up here.

[Hold the mirror up, but with the back facing the children instead of the front]. Now, what do you see? [Allow various responses] Oh, I’m sorry, you can’t see the mirror very well like that. Here, let me hold it the right way.

[Hold the mirror up but place something in front of it so the children still cannot see]. Now what do you see? [Allow various responses]. Oh, I’ve done it again. I’m sorry. Here, maybe this will help.

[Shake the mirror vigorously back and forth so that the children can’t focus]. Now what do you see? [Wait for responses]. Well, I’ve done it again. I can’t seem to figure out what’s wrong here. What should I do so you can see your reflection in the mirror? [Let them answer]. Well, you’re right. There are three things that must be true for you to be able to see your reflection.

1. The mirror has to be pointed in your direction.
2. There can’t be anything between the mirror and your eyes.
3. The mirror must be held still.

[Do these three things and let the children see their reflection]. You know, Jesus asked us to be mirrors. Did you know that? He wants us to “reflect” him, so when people look at us, they see a reflection of Jesus. And do you know how we do that?

1. Like the mirror, we have to be pointed in the right direction. If we have turned our backs on God, people won’t be able to see in our “mirror.” We must turn around [repentance] and face Jesus and do the things He wants us to.

2. Like the mirror, there can’t be anything between us and Jesus, or people won’t be able to see in our “mirror.” If we’re being mean to our brothers or sisters, or not listening to our parents, or doing something we know God doesn’t want us to, then we have sin in our lives that stands between us and God. We’ve got to ask God to forgive us so that there won’t be anything between us and God, and then other people will be able to see Jesus in us.

3. Like the mirror, we must be still before God. The Bible says to “be still and know that He is God.” That means we need to take time each day to get alone with God, read our Bible, and pray — focusing on what God wants for us. When we get still like that, people will be able to see Jesus in us.

Isn’t that neat, how God made us mirrors for Jesus? Let’s bow our heads and pray that God would make us be a mirror for Him today.

[Close in prayer.] Read more
Next Page »