Most kids understand that the New Testament has to do with Jesus, and the Old Testament was before Jesus. But they don’t understand why the New Testament is so magical or what the Good News really is that Jesus brought. Here’s one of my favorite bible lessons, which will help them understand the difference between the Law of Moses and the indwelling of Christ in our lives.
- 3 big fat phone books (like Verizon Yellow Pages)
- Measuring tape
- Masking tape
- Marker Pen
Preparation for the Lesson
- Using masking tape, fix the measuring tape to the wall, going from floor to ceiling (not side to side).
- Run a piece of masking tape down the binder of each phone book. Mark on one the words “Jesus’ love.”
- Mark on the next “Jesus’ mercy.” Mark on the last one “Jesus’ compassion.” Put them aside for now.
Matthew 7: 7,8, 12
Jesus said, 7Ask, and you will receive. Search, and you will find. Knock, and the door will be opened for you. 8Everyone who asks will receive. Everyone who searches will find. And the door will be opened for everyone who knocks. 12Treat others as you want them to treat you. This is what the Law and the Prophets are all about.
17 For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.
How To Teach The Bible Lesson
Begin by saying to your class…
Before Jesus came to earth and died on the cross, people had a lot of laws to follow. They often thought that if they followed all these laws that they would “˜earn’ their way into heaven. We know some of these laws. What laws did Moses bring?
They should answer “The Ten Commandments.”
God gave us the Ten Commandments, but none of us can keep them all the time. The problem with the law is that it was not designed to save people. It was not designed to “make people good.” Let’s use this measuring tape to help show what I’m talking about. First, we’re going to measure somebody.
Have the measuring tape thumb tacked to the wall so that kids can stand against it and have their height measured. Ask for a volunteer to come forward.
Now, I’m measuring [student’s name], and I find that she is [her height in feet and inches].
Hold her in place against the measuring tape.
But [student’s name], I need you to be taller!
Let the student stand on her tippy toes.
No”¦I need you to be taller than that!
Let her stand higher on her tippy toes.
How comfortable are you, stretching up and up like that? Are your feet starting to hurt? How much longer to do you think you stand on your tippy toes?
Let her answer.
And that’s a shame. Because, guess what? I need you to be this tall!
Find a spot way above her head and point to it.
(To the class) The laws of the Old Testament were a lot like this measuring tape. They could tell us how good we were being. But they do not have any power to make us better. This tape can tell us how tall we are, but it can’t make us any taller.
If [student’s name] really wants to be good, she’s going to need some help from Jesus. If we are going to “˜walk tall’ as Christians, we need Jesus to take us to new heights or we’ll always “˜fall short.’
Take out the phone books, stack them at the student’s feet. Name them as you stack them:
Here we have Jesus’ love. Here we have Jesus’ mercy. Here we have Jesus’ compassion. What does compassion mean?
Help them answer “Compassion is being able to put yourself in another person’s shoes. Jesus knows what we’re going through like he’s going through it himself with us.”
What happens when we stand on Jesus’ love, mercy and compassion?
Have the child stand on them under the measuring tape.
These books are like the heart of Jesus. If we “˜stand on’ Christ – if we trust him and believe in him and let him work in our daily lives–our spirits will grow taller and taller and taller. With him, we’ll be as tall as we need to be.
Obviously, we don’t need to be tall to get into heaven someday. What do we need to be to get into heaven?
They may say that we need to be good.
But when talking about the Ten Commandments, we realize that nobody is all the way good. We need to belong to Jesus. When we “˜stand on Him’ or rely on Him, we will “˜measure up’ and that’s the way to get into heaven.
Relying on Jesus brings us to salvation. This is not an easy concept to understand. Let’s thank God that we have the whole New Testament that will help us understand the love of Jesus better each week!
That’s it! Pretty cool, right?
Looking For More New Testament Bible Lessons?
If you want to see more bible lessons from the New Testament, check out this short video presentation: Teach Children The Meaning of Baptism With Just 3 Small Bowls Of Dirt!
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