Sunday Morning 5/22: Unit 9, Session 1: The People Kept Sinning

In the Book of Judges, we see a cycle of sin, oppression, repentance, rescue, obedience, and then back to sin. The condition of man’s heart when left to himself will “do what is right in his own eyes” (Judges 21:25). Our own hearts lead us to sinful behavior that leads to enslavement to sin. Judges reveals who we are apart from God’s grace.

The Book of Judges also uncovers what God is like. He is rich in love and quick to restore those who turn to Him. He is gracious; every time the people of Israel repented and turned from their sins, He sent deliverance. He restored Israel from the edge of destruction. God also revealed Himself as able to save no matter how difficult or deep the captivity. In fact, we see God’s mercy clearly when He sent the judge Samson when the people didn’t even ask for deliverance. In these warrior-deliver stories, God showed that what His people really needed was a king— not just any king but a perfect king who would rule His people with perfect justice and mercy. 

It is easy for us as modern readers to judge the people of Israel harshly. How could they turn away from a God who delivered them from their enemies over and over again? But how easy is it for us to be tempted away from love for God and love created things more than the Creator? 

What gives us hope and comfort is that in a world where it feels like there is chaos all around us, we know that God in His mercy is a God who rescues. He didn’t send a flawed warrior to deliver us from the effects of our sin temporarily. He sent His only Son to defeat sin and death and restore the relationship that sinners could never fix on their own. 

Today as you prepare to teach, rest in the knowledge that God has gone before you. Prepare your heart to point kids to Jesus over and over as the true Deliverer and the true peace for which their hearts desperately long.

FAMILY TALKING POINTS

CHRIST CONNECTION

This is the big idea of how this week’s Bible story points to Jesus.

  • Babies & Toddlers: Jesus rescues us from sin and changes our hearts.
  • Younger Preschool: God sent His Son, Jesus, to save us from sin and change our hearts to want to obey Him. 
  • Older Preschool: After God’s people sinned, the judges helped God’s people obey God again. But the judges could not change the people’s hearts and make them love God. God had a plan. He sent His Son, Jesus, to change His people’s hearts and save them from sin forever.
  • Kids: The judges saved the people from the consequences of their sin, but not the cause of it. God’s plan was to one day send a true Deliverer—Jesus, His own Son—to be the King of His people. Jesus saves people from sin forever.

BIG PICTURE QUESTION & ANSWER

This is an important biblical truth that your child will encounter each week of this unit. 

  • Younger Preschool: What is the punishment for sin? The punishment for sin is separation from God.
  • Older Preschool: What is the punishment for sin? The punishment for sin is death.
  • Kids: What is the fair payment for sin? The fair payment for sin is death.

KEY PASSAGE

This is a Bible verse that relates to what your child will encounter each week of this unit. 

  • Babies & Toddlers: God gives life forever. Romans 6:23
  • Younger Preschool: God gives life forever. Romans 6:23
  • Older Preschool: For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 6:23 
  • Kids: For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 6:23

** Next week: God Used Samson (Judges 13–16)

Sunday Morning 5/15: Unit 8, Session 4: God’s Miracles Prove Who He Is

The Bible is a supernatural book filled with accounts of supernatural events. Dozens of miracles are recorded in the Bible. Each miracle points to a greater reality and reveals to us what God is like. 

In the story of Israel’s crossing the Jordan, we see how God hears our cries and provides for us in miraculous ways. Throughout Israel’s history, we see miracles that reveal the kind of God we serve: a God who is close; a God who sees, hears, and acts.

In his book Miracles, C.S. Lewis said, “The central miracle asserted by Christians is the Incarnation. They say that God became Man. Every other miracle prepares the way for this, or results from this.”

All of Scripture reveals the kind of God who comes close, who miraculously took on flesh and lived a perfect life among us. God the Son died in our place and rose from the dead. In His death, He conquered both sin and death. He came back to life and ascended to the right hand of the Father, where He lives to make intercession for us. (Heb. 7:25) We should be moved when we consider that not only do we have a God who hears us, but who sees us, lived among us, and lives to make intercession for us.

Through the miracle of Christ’s finished work, we can be forgiven and reconciled to God. We who were far off and without hope in this life have hope because of the miraculous birth, life, death, and resurrection of Jesus.

As you prepare to teach, pray and ask the God of miracles to move in the hearts of your kids as they hear the gospel proclaimed. Finally, say a prayer of thanksgiving to a miracle-working God who sees, hears, and acts for His glory and our good.

FAMILY TALKING POINTS

CHRIST CONNECTION

This is the big idea of how this week’s Bible story points to Jesus.

  • Babies & Toddlers: God raised Jesus from the dead. Jesus is alive.
  • Younger Preschool: God raised Jesus from the dead to prove He is the Son of God who rescues us from sin.
  • Older Preschool: Jesus died on the cross for our sins, but He rose from the dead and is alive! God raised Jesus from the dead to prove He is the Son of God who rescues us from sin.
  • Kids: Jesus died on the cross for our sins, but He didn’t stay dead. God was pleased with Jesus’ sacrifice and miraculously raised Jesus from the dead to prove He is the Son of God and salvation is found in Him.

BIG PICTURE QUESTION & ANSWER

This is an important biblical truth that your child will encounter each week of this unit. 

  • Younger Preschool: What is a miracle? A miracle is something that shows God’s power.
  • Older Preschool: What is a miracle? A miracle is something God does that usually cannot be done.
  • Kids: What is a miracle? A miracle is something God does that usually cannot be done so that we can know He is all-powerful.

KEY PASSAGE

This is a Bible verse that relates to what your child will encounter each week of this unit. 

  • Babies & Toddlers: God shows His strength to people. Psalm 77:14 
  • Younger Preschool: God shows His strength to people. Psalm 77:14
  • Older Preschool: You are the God who works wonders; you revealed your strength among the peoples. Psalm 77:14
  • Kids: You are the God who works wonders; you revealed your strength among the peoples. Psalm 77:14

** Next week: The People Kept Sinning (Judges 2)

Sunday Morning 5/8: Unit 8, Session 3: Joshua Challenged the People

Joshua was getting along in years, so he gathered the people at the place where God had made a promise to Abraham. (See Gen. 12:6-7.) Joshua wanted the people to remember and to live based on what they knew to be true about God: God can be trusted. He is good, and He is faithful.

Joshua issued a challenge: “Be very strong and continue obeying all that is written in the book of the law of Moses.” Reading, studying, and obeying God’s Word is a mark of belief in God. Joshua reminded the people that they were successful over their enemies because of their obedience to God. Joshua also gave the Israelites a warning. Just as all the good things God promised had been fulfilled, so would all the bad things He promised if the Israelites disobeyed Him.

Further, Joshua reminded the leaders of their nations’ history—from the birth of Isaac to Israel’s escape from Egypt. Over and over, God had demonstrated His power and goodness to the Israelites. Their ancestors had repeatedly turned from God to worship the false gods of other nations. Joshua said, “Choose for yourselves today: Which will you worship … As for me and my family, we will worship the LORD” (Josh. 24:15).

The Israelites had a choice: Continue to worship God or choose to serve other gods. In response to God’s faithfulness to His promises, the Israelites renewed their covenant to be faithful to the Lord.

As you share the story of Joshua’s legacy with kids, point them to a greater legacy found in Jesus Christ. Jesus gave a similar type of farewell speech at the Last Supper, exhorting His disciples to not only love God but love one another. After His resurrection, Jesus sent His disciples out to tell the nations about Him. Jesus calls all people who trust in Him to tell others about Him.

FAMILY TALKING POINTS

CHRIST CONNECTION

This is the big idea of how this week’s Bible story points to Jesus.

  • Babies & Toddlers: Jesus told the disciples to obey Him by telling others about Him.
  • Younger Preschool: Joshua told the Israelites to obey God. Jesus told the disciples to obey Him by telling others about Him.
  • Older Preschool: Before Joshua died, he left the Israelites with a task: obey God. After Jesus’ death and resurrection, Jesus appeared to His disciples and left them with a task: obey Him by telling others about Him.
  • Kids: As Joshua prepared for his own death, he left behind a legacy of obedience to God. After Jesus’ death and resurrection, He appeared to the disciples and left them with a legacy: to obey Him by making disciples of all nations.

BIG PICTURE QUESTION & ANSWER

This is an important biblical truth that your child will encounter each week of this unit. 

  • Younger Preschool: What is a miracle? A miracle is something that shows God’s power.
  • Older Preschool: What is a miracle? A miracle is something God does that usually cannot be done.
  • Kids: What is a miracle? A miracle is something God does that usually cannot be done so that we can know He is all-powerful.

KEY PASSAGE

This is a Bible verse that relates to what your child will encounter each week of this unit. 

  • Babies & Toddlers: God shows His strength to people. Psalm 77:14 
  • Younger Preschool: God shows His strength to people. Psalm 77:14
  • Older Preschool: You are the God who works wonders; you revealed your strength among the peoples. Psalm 77:14
  • Kids: You are the God who works wonders; you revealed your strength among the peoples. Psalm 77:14

** Next week: God’s Miracles Prove Who He Is (Mark 16)

Sunday Morning 5/1: Unit 8, Session 2: God Gave the People the Land

In today’s story, we see that God fights for His people and gives them peace and rest. We live in a world filled with conflict and pain. We desperately want peace. The reality is that true peace doesn’t come from any amount of solitude or self-confidence; we need true peace that comes from being forgiven. Peace comes as we trust in the finished work of Jesus. His forgiveness, not our own effort, brings us lasting peace.

Read the words of the apostle Paul in Ephesians 2:12-14. In a world of conflict, Christ is our hope. In a world filled with division, He is our peace. This peace and hope Paul speaks of are available to us when we place our trust in Christ alone for our salvation. This is a continual, daily dying to self so that we may live in Christ.

What is so interesting about the section of Scripture your kids will be learning about today is that it shows us that we humans have not changed and God has not changed. Israel obeyed God at Jericho, and God fought for His people. They enjoyed good success. 

Next, they went up against a smaller city and relied on their own strength rather than seeking God’s strength. They disobeyed and took things devoted to God and fought a battle at Ai without consulting God and His plan. Their lives were filled with disunity. Sin is the reason our world is in disunity. The lie we believe is that sin is personal and doesn’t affect anyone else. Sin is the rejection of God Himself and the placing of our trust in things He has made. The sin of one Israelite—Achan—affected him, his family, and the whole nation.

Joshua’s response was right. He humbled himself, appealed to God’s covenant-keeping power, and responded with obedience when God spoke to him.

When we sin, we must recognize the damage that it creates in our lives and in the world. Our response must not be to cover it up but to run to Christ because He is our hope, our life, and our peace.

Dwell on these words from theologian Charles Spurgeon: “My faith rests not upon what I am or shall be or feel or know, but in what Christ is, in what He has done, and in what He is now doing for me. Hallelujah!”

FAMILY TALKING POINTS

CHRIST CONNECTION

This is the big idea of how this week’s Bible story points to Jesus.

  • Babies & Toddlers: Jesus gives us victory over sin and death.
  • Younger Preschool: God saved the Israelites and gave them victory over their enemies. God saved sinners by sending His Son, Jesus, to die on the cross. Jesus gives us victory over sin and death.
  • Older Preschool: Joshua’s name means “The LORD is salvation.” God fought for Joshua and the Israelites, saving them and giving them victory over their enemies. God saved sinners by sending His Son, Jesus, to die on the cross. Jesus gives us victory over sin and death.
  • Kids: Joshua’s name means “The LORD is salvation.” God fought for Joshua and the Israelites, saving them and giving them victory over their enemies. Sinners can look to God for victory over sin and death. God brought us salvation by sending His Son, Jesus, to die on the cross and rise again.

BIG PICTURE QUESTION & ANSWER

This is an important biblical truth that your child will encounter each week of this unit. 

  • Younger Preschool: What is a miracle? A miracle is something that shows God’s power.
  • Older Preschool: What is a miracle? A miracle is something God does that usually cannot be done.
  • Kids: What is a miracle? A miracle is something God does that usually cannot be done so that we can know He is all-powerful.

KEY PASSAGE

This is a Bible verse that relates to what your child will encounter each week of this unit. 

  • Babies & Toddlers: God shows His strength to people. Psalm 77:14 
  • Younger Preschool: God shows His strength to people. Psalm 77:14
  • Older Preschool: You are the God who works wonders; you revealed your strength among the peoples. Psalm 77:14
  • Kids: You are the God who works wonders; you revealed your strength among the peoples. Psalm 77:14

** Next week: Joshua Challenged the People (Joshua 23–24)

Sunday Morning 4/24: Unit 8, Session 1: God Defeated Jericho

In our Bible story today, we see not just mercy, but courageous mercy. Rahab by faith, courageously trusted God and hid the Hebrew spies. Mercy is not courageous until being merciful costs us something. Rahab’s mercy was pushed to the testing point. She had compassion and, in doing so, risked her life. She showed mercy; as a result, she received mercy.

Mercy is compassion or forgiveness shown toward someone whom it is within one’s power to punish or harm. Mercy was one of the marks of Jesus’ ministry. He modeled it for us on earth. There are countless examples of Jesus’ showing compassion and forgiveness to those who didn’t deserve it. 

Mercy always involves courage because you have the power—and often the right—to punish rather than forgive. In our world today, the act of forgiveness is often seen as a weakness. It’s risky. Mercy that lacks courage will be sporadic in its application. We, like Pilate, will forgive until it costs us something. We will have compassion, but only from a distance. This is the beauty of Christ that we see in stories like Rahab.

The God we serve is lavish in His mercy and rich in His kindness. What Rahab experienced is a glimpse of God’s mercy we see in Christ. Jesus is the full expression of the mercy and kindness of God. Jesus isn’t concerned from a distance; He took on human flesh and dwelt among us. Jesus didn’t just act mercifully when it was convenient. He laid down his life so that we could be forgiven.

Rahab modeled for us what Jesus preached in the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 5:7: “Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.” Let us today be extenders of mercy to others because of the tender mercy of God in Christ we have received because of the life, death, resurrection, and ascension of Christ.

FAMILY TALKING POINTS

CHRIST CONNECTION

This is the big idea of how this week’s Bible story points to Jesus.

  • Babies & Toddlers: Everyone who trusts in Jesus becomes part of God’s family forever.
  • Younger Preschool: The Israelites kept Rahab and her family safe, and she joined God’s people. Everyone who trusts in Jesus is safe and becomes part of God’s family forever.
  • Older Preschool: By faith Rahab believed God would win the battle. The Israelites kept Rahab and her family safe, and she joined God’s people. Jesus has won against sin and death. Everyone who trusts in Jesus is safe and becomes part of God’s family forever.
  • Kids: By faith, Rahab believed God would win the battle. When the Israelites attacked Jericho, Rahab and her family received mercy and became part of God’s people. Jesus has won against sin and death. Everyone who trusts in Jesus receives mercy and becomes part of God’s family forever.

BIG PICTURE QUESTION & ANSWER

This is an important biblical truth that your child will encounter each week of this unit. 

  • Younger Preschool: What is a miracle? A miracle is something that shows God’s power.
  • Older Preschool: What is a miracle? A miracle is something God does that usually cannot be done.
  • Kids: What is a miracle? A miracle is something God does that usually cannot be done so that we can know He is all-powerful.

KEY PASSAGE

This is a Bible verse that relates to what your child will encounter each week of this unit. 

  • Babies & Toddlers: God shows His strength to people. Psalm 77:14 
  • Younger Preschool: God shows His strength to people. Psalm 77:14
  • Older Preschool: You are the God who works wonders; you revealed your strength among the peoples. Psalm 77:14
  • Kids: You are the God who works wonders; you revealed your strength among the peoples. Psalm 77:14

** Next week: God Gave the People the Land (Joshua 7–11)

Sunday Morning 4/17: Unit 7, Session 3: The Bible Helps Us Live for God

In 2 Timothy 3:16-17, Paul points out that Scripture is enough for us. It is our source for godliness and our final authority in matters pertaining to doctrine. The confessions of every Protestant denomination affirm the sufficiency of Scripture.

Why does this matter for kids? We need to teach our kids that even though the Bible may not mention everything in life, it mentions everything we need to know about God, His plan to save us, and how we can live a holy life to please Him. It is important in a world that has become increasingly hostile to the Bible that we teach our kids the value of reading it and applying it to our lives daily. 

What is important for us to remember and for kids to know about the Bible?

  1. The Bible is how God speaks to us. The words of the Bible are not like any other document on earth. They are the way God chose to tell us what He is like. 
  2. The Bible is about God and for us. One common misunderstanding about the Bible is that the Bible is about us. As we are reminded each week in our Christ connection, the Bible is about Jesus, but it is for us. It is how we can understand, apply, and teach others what God is like. 
  3. The Bible is how we can know how to love God and live for God. God speaks to us through His Word, shows us what He is like, and tells us how life works best and how we can live for Him in the world He has made for us. 

Take a moment to thank God for the Bible as you prepare to show your kids the beauty of Christ in the pages of Scripture. Paul told Timothy that all of the Bible is important for us to grow and to know. This is just as true for kids. The question is not what parts of the Bible we should teach kids but how we should teach all of the Bible to kids.

FAMILY TALKING POINTS

CHRIST CONNECTION

This is the big idea of how this week’s Bible story points to Jesus.

  • Babies & Toddlers: Like Jesus, we can read, believe, and obey God’s words in the Bible.
  • Younger Preschool: Jesus always obeyed God’s words in the Bible. Like Jesus, we can read, believe, and obey God’s words in the Bible.
  • Older Preschool: The Bible tells us about God’s plan to forgive sinners through His Son, Jesus. Jesus always obeyed God’s Word. Like Jesus, we can read, believe, and obey the Bible as we live to give God glory.
  • Kids: Paul wrote to teach Timothy how to live for God. The Bible tells us about God’s plan for people to have forgiveness through His Son, Jesus. Jesus obeyed God’s Word perfectly. We can follow Jesus’ example to read, believe, and obey the Bible as we live for God’s glory.

BIG PICTURE QUESTION & ANSWER

This is an important biblical truth that your child will encounter each week of this unit. 

  • Younger Preschool: What is the Bible? The Bible is God’s words to us.
  • Older Preschool: What is the Bible? The Bible is God’s Word.
  • Kids: What is the Bible? The Bible is God’s Word that tells us what is true about God and ourselves.

KEY PASSAGE

This is a Bible verse that relates to what your child will encounter each week of this unit. 

  • Babies & Toddlers: God’s word shows my path. Psalm 119:105 
  • Younger Preschool: God’s word shows my path. Psalm 119:105
  • Older Preschool: Your word is a lamp for my feet and a light on my path. Psalm 119:105 
  • Kids: Your word is a lamp for my feet and a light on my path. Psalm 119:105

** Next week: God Defeated Jericho (Joshua 2; 6)

Sunday Morning 4/10: Unit 7, Session 2: God Stopped the Jordan River

The children of Israel often gave in to worry and bitterness. Their attitude revealed deeper heart issues: their belief that God had failed to take care of them and would fail in the future. It was in the 40 years of wandering in the desert that God showed them over and over that He was worthy of their trust. Yet they still did not trust Him.

When God provided supernatural food for them to eat, they craved the food of Egypt. (Num. 11:4-6) When they first encountered the inhabitants of Canaan, they were filled with fear because they didn’t trust that God would be with them. (Num. 13:33) God went out of His way to deliver His people, protect them, and provide for them. He showed He is all-powerful and trustworthy.

Read Moses’ words in Deuteronomy 6:20-24. Moses implored the Israelites to remember what God had done and testify to their children of His faithfulness. God had brought them out of Egypt to keep His covenant with Abraham. He gave them instructions for their good.

Meditate on Moses’ proclamation: “We were slaves in Egypt, but God, by his grace, set us free.” This truth is particularly helpful for us when we face difficulties and periods of anxiety. We can have peace in the present by looking backward in gratitude and forward with hope. When we look back at our lives and the millions of ways God has provided and protected us, our hearts should be filled with gratitude. Based on God’s character as revealed in Scripture and in our lives, we can look forward with hope, knowing that God, who has preserved us, will continue to do so until He comes to bring us home.

As you get ready to teach, prepare your heart by reminding yourself of God’s faithfulness. Tell the kids in your group how God has shown Himself worthy of your trust. They too can put their hope in a God who never fails.

FAMILY TALKING POINTS

CHRIST CONNECTION

This is the big idea of how this week’s Bible story points to Jesus.

  • Babies & Toddlers: We can remember what God has done through Jesus.
  • Younger Preschool: God was with His people as they went into the promised land. He showed His power so they would trust in Him. When Jesus came to earth, He showed His power so people would trust in Him.
  • Older Preschool: God was with Joshua and the Israelites as they went into the promised land. He showed His power to them so they would trust in Him. When Jesus came to earth, He showed His power so people would trust in Him and be saved from sin.
  • Kids: God went ahead of Joshua and the Israelites into the promised land. He showed His power to them so they would trust in Him. When Jesus came to earth, He showed His power so people would trust in Him and be saved from sin.

BIG PICTURE QUESTION & ANSWER

This is an important biblical truth that your child will encounter each week of this unit. 

  • Younger Preschool: What is the Bible? The Bible is God’s words to us.
  • Older Preschool: What is the Bible? The Bible is God’s Word.
  • Kids: What is the Bible? The Bible is God’s Word that tells us what is true about God and ourselves.

KEY PASSAGE

This is a Bible verse that relates to what your child will encounter each week of this unit. 

  • Babies & Toddlers: God’s word shows my path. Psalm 119:105 
  • Younger Preschool: God’s word shows my path. Psalm 119:105
  • Older Preschool: Your word is a lamp for my feet and a light on my path. Psalm 119:105 
  • Kids: Your word is a lamp for my feet and a light on my path. Psalm 119:105

** Next week: The Bible Helps Us Live for God (2 Timothy 3)

Sunday Morning 4/3: Unit 7, Session 1: God Encouraged Joshua

We often think that fear is the absence of courage, and to some degree, it is. However, true courage is not someone who is free of fear. Courage comes to us most often, and especially when we are young, from the presence of another. In C. S. Lewis’ The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, Lucy, the young heroine of Lewis’ stories, was on a boat that went into the dark night of a cave where their worst fears were realized. 

Going into the cave, they all were afraid. Inside the cave, their fears were realized. They were in the middle of the night and without hope, and Lucy (whose name means “light”) asked Aslan to send help.

Aslan (the Christ figure in Lewis’ work) answered by sending his light into their darkness and his word to her heart. He said, “Courage, dear heart.”

The gospel tells us that our greatest enemy, sin, and our greatest fear, death, has no hold on us—not because of courage that rises up from within us, but from courage that came from outside of us. Jesus came from outside of us and said to us through his life, death, and resurrection, “Courage, dear heart.”

The promise of peace, true rest that Moses and now Joshua sought, was not conditional on what they saw in front of them. It was based on the character of God. The promise God gave to Joshua was the promise of His presence in the middle of the dark night. This promise is true for us and is experienced in the person and work of Christ.

As you prepare to teach, take a moment to allow the Person of God’s Spirit to whisper to your heart what God’s Word proclaims to be true, no matter how difficult your week or dark your night. You are loved, you are cared for, you are not alone. Christ is with you. Christ has gone before you; Christ is interceding for you. 

Remember the words God gave Joshua: “Haven’t I commanded you: be strong and courageous? Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go” (Josh. 1:9). What a promise. What a Savior.

FAMILY TALKING POINTS

CHRIST CONNECTION

This is the big idea of how this week’s Bible story points to Jesus.

  • Babies & Toddlers: Jesus leads us into the promised land of God’s kingdom.
  • Younger Preschool: Joshua led God’s people into the promised land. Jesus leads us into the promised land of God’s kingdom.
  • Older Preschool: God encouraged Joshua and promised to be with him. Joshua led God’s people into the promised land, where they would find rest. We have true rest in Jesus, who is with us always. Jesus leads us into the promised land of God’s kingdom.
  • Kids: God encouraged Joshua and promised to be with him as he led the Israelites into the promised land, where they would be victorious and find rest. We have victory over sin and rest for our souls in Jesus, who is with us always and leads us into the promised land of God’s kingdom.

BIG PICTURE QUESTION & ANSWER

This is an important biblical truth that your child will encounter each week of this unit. 

  • Younger Preschool: What is the Bible? The Bible is God’s words to us.
  • Older Preschool: What is the Bible? The Bible is God’s Word.
  • Kids: What is the Bible? The Bible is God’s Word that tells us what is true about God and ourselves.

KEY PASSAGE

This is a Bible verse that relates to what your child will encounter each week of this unit. 

  • Babies & Toddlers: God’s word shows my path. Psalm 119:105 
  • Younger Preschool: God’s word shows my path. Psalm 119:105
  • Older Preschool: Your word is a lamp for my feet and a light on my path. Psalm 119:105 
  • Kids: Your word is a lamp for my feet and a light on my path. Psalm 119:105

** Next week: God Stopped the Jordan River (Joshua 3–4)

Sunday Morning 3/27: Unit 6, Session 4: No One Is Like God

Peter began his first epistle by reminding believers that we are not of this world; our true citizenship is found in God’s kingdom. As such, we live in the present world as exiles and ambassadors—representatives of our true King. 

With this reminder established, Peter explained how Christ’s ambassadors are to live, which can be summed up in God’s words recorded at the end of 1 Peter 1:16, “Be holy, because I am holy.” Peter draws this imperative from Leviticus 12:44-45, where God had told the Israelites this twice in rapid succession.

To be holy is to be set apart, to be different in a good way. As such, holiness is at the core of the Old Testament law. The reason behind many of God’s commands that may make us scratch our heads is holiness. These commands were to teach Israel what it means to be holy and to model holiness to the watching world. All of this points us to the even greater idea of God’s holiness. God’s people—His image bearers–are to imitate God. 

So far so good, right? But this is where the wheels fall off of the cart. When we turn our attention to God’s holiness, we quickly come to the point of recognizing that this is an impossible standard. God is perfectly holy. There is absolutely no sin in Him. He is perfectly loving, kind, and good without an ounce of hate or evil. How are we supposed to be thisholy? Why would God command us to do something we cannot do? 

The answer to that last question is that God gave this command exactly because we cannot do it. We cannot be holy enough—not even close. Not on our own, that is. But the beauty of the gospel shows us another way. We can indeed be holy as God is holy because Christ is holy. And when we trust in Christ, our sin is removed and in its place we are credited with Christ’s perfect righteousness. (2 Cor. 5:21) We obey this command of God by trusting in Christ! 

But it doesn’t end there. We are holy in our identity in Christ, but each day we are to strive to live out our new, true holy identity. Every day, our goal is to live as who we now are, rather than who we were. Even this though, is done not in our power, but in Christ’s power. No one is like God in His fullness, but in Christ, we as His children are called and empowered to be like Him in many ways.

FAMILY TALKING POINTS

CHRIST CONNECTION

This is the big idea of how this week’s Bible story points to Jesus.

  • Babies & Toddlers: Jesus shows us what God is like. 
  • Younger Preschool: No one is like God. He is holy, good, and loving. Jesus shows us what God is like. God can make us more like Jesus.
  • Older Preschool: No one is like God. He is holy, good, and loving. Jesus shows us what God is like. Jesus is holy. When we trust in Jesus, God makes us holy. God can make us more like Jesus.
  • Kids: No one is like God. God is holy, good, and loving. Jesus shows us what God is like and gives us hope. God can make us more like Jesus. We can trust Him and live joyfully for Him.

BIG PICTURE QUESTION & ANSWER

This is an important biblical truth that your child will encounter each week of this unit. 

  • Younger Preschool: What is God like? There is no one like God. He is perfect, good, and loving.
  • Older Preschool: What is God like? God is holy, good, and loving.
  • Kids: What is God like? God is holy, good, and loving. 

KEY PASSAGE

This is a Bible verse that relates to what your child will encounter each week of this unit. 

  • Babies & Toddlers: We praise God; He does wonderful things. — Exodus 15:11
  • Younger Preschool: We praise the one true God. He does wonderful things. — Exodus 15:11
  • Older Preschool: LORD, who is like you … glorious in holiness, revered with praises, performing wonders?— Exodus 15:11 
  • Kids: LORD, who is like you among the gods? Who is like you, glorious in holiness, revered with praises, performing wonders? — Exodus 15:11

** Next week: God Encouraged Joshua (Joshua 1)

Sunday Morning 3/20: Unit 6, Session 3: God Healed People

If there was one thing the Israelites were good at, it was grumbling. They weren’t just good; they were experts: “We have no food. We have no water. Why are we in the wilderness left to die? The land has big people in it.” And on and on and on. We have to wonder how Moses put up with it all.

In Numbers 21, we encounter another time when the people grumbled—once again about food and water. Each time they doubted God’s goodness and truthfulness, God had shown them mercy and grace. But on this day, He sent serpents into the Israelites’ camp to strike them for their unfaithfulness. Many people died.

We might not like to think of it, but this is what the Israelites deserved all along. Their sin earned them judgment and death. God was perfectly just and righteous to give His people what they deserved. 

Yet, as we have seen so often in the Old Testament and will continue to see throughout the rest of Scripture, God extends grace and mercy along with judgment. When the people pleaded for Moses to intercede on their behalf, God instructed Moses to make a bronze serpent and lift it on a pole. Whoever looked upon it would be healed. 

Notice two things. First, God’s response was not to remove judgment but to provide salvation through judgment. This is another theme we have seen throughout the Scriptures (e.g. Noah, the plagues). 

Second, God’s instructions made little to no sense. Imagine you are an Israelite and were just bitten by a serpent. Although other serpents are all around still, you are to take your eyes off of that threat and turn them upward to look at a bronze serpent on a pole—an image of the very thing that has brought death to your door?

This detail in the story is a foreshadowing of what God has called us to do in Christ. While our faith is far from blind, it always has an aspect of not making sense, at least to the world around us. But this is how we are saved too: by taking our eyes off of the sin in and around us, and looking upon Christ lifted up on the cross—He who became sin (2 Cor. 5:21). We too are saved through judgment, for our judgment has been placed on Christ. 

FAMILY TALKING POINTS

CHRIST CONNECTION

This is the big idea of how this week’s Bible story points to Jesus.

  • Babies & Toddlers: We look to Jesus to be saved from sin. 
  • Younger Preschool: God sent snakes to punish the people. but anyone who was bitten could look at the snake on the pole and live. We can look to Jesus to be saved from our sin.
  • Older Preschool: God sent snakes to punish the people, but anyone who was bitten could look at the snake on the pole and live. We sin, too. We can look to Jesus and trust in Him to be saved from our sin.
  • Kids: God sent snakes to punish the people, but anyone who was bitten could look at the snake on the pole and live. We deserve to die because of our sin, but anyone who looks to Jesus on the cross and trusts in Him will live forever with God.

BIG PICTURE QUESTION & ANSWER

This is an important biblical truth that your child will encounter each week of this unit. 

  • Younger Preschool: What is God like? There is no one like God. He is perfect, good, and loving.
  • Older Preschool: What is God like? God is holy, good, and loving.
  • Kids: What is God like? God is holy, good, and loving. 

KEY PASSAGE

This is a Bible verse that relates to what your child will encounter each week of this unit. 

  • Babies & Toddlers: We praise God; He does wonderful things. — Exodus 15:11
  • Younger Preschool: We praise the one true God. He does wonderful things. — Exodus 15:11
  • Older Preschool: LORD, who is like you … glorious in holiness, revered with praises, performing wonders?— Exodus 15:11 
  • Kids: LORD, who is like you among the gods? Who is like you, glorious in holiness, revered with praises, performing wonders? — Exodus 15:11

** Next week: No One Is Like God (1 Peter 1:13-25)