First Grade Bibles

We are excited to welcome your kids to first grade! As we begin this year, your child will receive their very own Bible! Please partner with us as we encourage the kids to regularly use their new Bible and we hope they will bring them to church! The Bibles will be our guide as we discuss God’s truth and teach them to locate the various Bible stories. Each unit of The Gospel Project will also contain a memory verse, referred to as the Key Passage. We encourage you to help your child memorize this verse and use their new Bibles to actually find the verse!

You can find the latest lesson and memory verse (or key passage) here at goredemptionkids.com! Register for Bibles HERE!

Sunday Morning 7/25: Unit 34, Session 4: Running the Race

While Paul sat in a Roman prison from AD 60 to 62, he wrote letters to churches he had started or visited on his missionary journeys. Despite his circumstances, Paul’s letter to the church at Philippi is filled with joy. Philippians reveals Paul’s heart as a devoted follower of Christ. It is full of practical advice about how to live for Jesus and love others.

In the third chapter, Paul wrote about knowing Christ. He said that his relationship with Jesus was the only thing that mattered. This was in stark contrast to his priorities before becoming a believer. As a devout Jew, Paul had been proud of his status: He was circumcised according to the Law, he belonged to the Israelite tribe of Benjamin, he was a faithful Pharisee, and he obeyed the Old Testament law. Now, as a Christian, Paul considered these accolades to be worthless.

Paul set an example for the Philippian believers. They had been distracted by false teachings. He encouraged Christians to press on through difficulties by essentially keeping their “eyes on the prize.” He set himself up as an example for the Philippians to imitate. Paul was motivated by God’s promise to stand before the Lord, meet Him face-to-face, and know Him completely. Paul’s journey toward Christian maturity involved figuring out God’s call on his life and carrying it out. 

Our perseverance in the race reminds us of Jesus’ enduring the cross, which provided forgiveness of our sins and salvation. Because Jesus fixed His sight on the victory that awaited Him, we persevere, fixing our gaze on the hope that one day we will be glorified with Him.

As you talk with your kids, help them think about the Christian life as a race. We don’t want to get distracted or give up running even though it is hard. We can encourage one another toward the finish line. The Lord will help us, and He promises a wonderful prize: life with Him forever.

Following Jesus is like running a race for a wonderful prize. We remember that Jesus never sinned but He endured the cross so we can have forgiveness of our sins. We press on to fully know Jesus and share in His victory for eternity.

FAMILY STARTING POINTS 

  • Babies and Toddlers
    • Following Jesus is better than anything.
    • Knowing Jesus is better than anything.
    • Paul wanted to know Jesus more and more.
    • We wait for the day when Jesus will come back.
    • God makes us more like Jesus.
  • Preschool
    • Following Jesus is like running a race.
    • What is sanctification? Sanctification is how God makes us more like Jesus.
  • Kids
    • Following Jesus is like running a race for a wonderful prize. 
    • What is sanctification? Sanctification is the process of becoming more like Jesus by the power of the Holy Spirit.

UNIT KEY PASSAGE

  • 1 Timothy 6:12

NEXT WEEK 

“Paul Before Rulers” (Acts 24–26)

Sunday Morning 7/18: Unit 34, Session 3: Together in Jesus

During his second missionary journey, Paul stopped in Ephesus and preached in the synagogue. (See Acts 18:19.) Apollos, a Jewish believer, also taught in the synagogue there. Paul’s third missionary journey took him back to Ephesus, where he spent two to three years speaking with crowds about Jesus. (See Acts 19:8-10.) As people believed in Jesus, the church was established and grew under local leadership.

Paul was in a Roman prison when he wrote his letter to the church at Ephesus. Paul’s letter to the Ephesians—like other letters he wrote to churches when he was unable to meet with them in person—brought words of instruction and encouragement that are still helpful to believers today. The letter to the Ephesians focuses on the big idea of unity.

Paul wrote to teach Jewish and Gentile believers that they are one in Christ and that they should treat one another with the love of Christ. Focus on these three ways believers are united: united in sin, united in Christ, and united in one Church.

First, we are united in sin. Paul’s description applies to first-century believers, to believers today, and to everyone. We are spiritually dead. Our union with Adam as the representative of the whole human race unites us in sin. Apart from Christ, we live as the world lives—doing whatever we want. This is bad news.

Next, we are united in Christ. Jesus is the second Adam. All who trust in Him are united to Him and to one another through Him. He makes us alive again. This is the good news of the Bible. Finally, we are united as the Church. Jesus breaks down barriers between Jew and Gentile, and He unites forgiven sinners as one church.

As you share with your kids, emphasize that God brings together different people as the church. People who might otherwise have nothing in common are part of the same family, adopted as brothers and sisters in Christ forever and ever.

The gospel brings together all people who have faith in Jesus. God’s salvation is a gift of grace, not something we can earn with good works. Forgiven sinners come together as the church to obey God and do His work in the world. 

FAMILY STARTING POINTS 

  • Babies and Toddlers
    • The good news of the gospel brings people together.
    • Jesus brings people to God.
    • We are saved by grace through faith.
    • The gospel makes everyone part of the same family.
    • God makes us more like Jesus.
  • Preschool
    • The gospel brings together everyone who has faith in Jesus.
    • What is sanctification? Sanctification is how God makes us more like Jesus.
  • Kids
    • The gospel brings together different people as the church. 
    • What is sanctification? Sanctification is the process of becoming more like Jesus by the power of the Holy Spirit.

UNIT KEY PASSAGE

  • 1 Timothy 6:12

NEXT WEEK

  • “Running the Race” (Philippians 3)

Sunday Morning 7/11: Unit 34, Session 2: Paul Was Arrested

As Paul’s third missionary journey came to an end, a prophet named Agabus warned him that the Jews would seize him in Jerusalem and hand him over to the Gentiles. (See Acts 21:10-11.) 

But Paul did not hesitate. He returned to Jerusalem and was seized by a group of Jews who wanted to kill him because he taught things contrary to their teaching. 

The Roman soldiers nearby saw the commotion and stepped in, taking Paul into Roman custody. Now Paul was in Gentile hands. Paul remained under Roman protection and was staying in the barracks when the Lord gave him a message: “Have courage! For as you have testified about me in Jerusalem, so it is necessary for you to testify in Rome” (Acts 23:11).

What a comforting message for Paul! The sovereign Lord told Paul his future: You’re going to Rome. Paul wasn’t exactly sure how he was going to get to Rome, but he could trust that God was working all things together for that purpose.

The next morning, Paul’s nephew uncovered a plot to kill Paul and reported it to the Roman army commander. The commander arranged for Paul to go to Caesarea, where he would be safe.

In this Bible story, we see God using human means to bring about His end. Even when others threatened his life, Paul continued to obey Jesus. He believed that God, who showed His love for the world by sending His Son to die on the cross and rise again, would help him through hard times. We too can risk everything to share the gospel with courage because we know that God loves us and will care for us. 

We too can risk everything to share the gospel with courage because we know that God loves us and will care for us. God calls us to be obedient and faithful as we take part in His greater plan to show His glory to us and through us for the fame of His name.

FAMILY STARTING POINTS 

  • Babies and Toddlers
    • We obey God because He loves us and takes care of us.
    • God chose Paul to tell people about Jesus.
    • Some people wanted to stop Paul’s preaching.
    • God kept Paul safe so he could do God’s plan.
    • God makes us more like Jesus.
  • Preschool
    • God protected Paul.
    • What is sanctification? Sanctification is how God makes us more like Jesus.
  • Kids
    • God protected Paul so he could preach about Jesus. 
    • What is sanctification? Sanctification is the process of becoming more like Jesus by the power of the Holy Spirit.

UNIT KEY PASSAGE

  • 1 Timothy 6:12

NEXT WEEK 

  • “Together in Jesus” (Ephesians 2–3)

Sunday Morning 7/4: Unit 34, Session 1: Paul’s Third Journey

Paul’s third missionary journey was unlike his first two because he didn’t set out to plant churches. Instead, his mission was to encourage and strengthen existing churches. Paul wrote letters to the churches, but he knew some guidance was best given in person. 

Paul’s journey began when he traveled to the city of Corinth. To make a living, Paul was a tentmaker. Paul became friends with two other tentmakers in Corinth: a man named Aquila and his wife, Priscilla. In his business dealings, Paul was able to share the gospel with many people. The church in Corinth grew.

Paul took Aquila and Priscilla with him to Ephesus. Ephesus was a thriving city in the Roman Empire. Aquila and Priscilla stayed in Ephesus while Paul traveled to other churches and encouraged the believers. While Paul traveled, Aquila and Priscilla interacted with a Jewish believer named Apollos. Apollos was a leader in the early church, and Aquila and Priscilla helped him better understand about Jesus and the Scriptures. Apollos went on to greatly help other believers by showing through Scripture that Jesus is the Messiah.

The Holy Spirit led Paul to go to Jerusalem. This wasn’t an easy call to obey. The Spirit revealed to Paul that imprisonment and suffering awaited in Jerusalem. (See Acts 20:23.) Hadn’t Paul done enough? He had spent years preaching the gospel, and many people believed. Wasn’t now a good time for Paul to retire comfortably on a beach somewhere? 

Emphasize to your kids that Paul did not cling to his own life. As Paul traveled on his third missionary journey, he used every opportunity to tell people the good news about Jesus and to help the church. Paul was dedicated to Jesus, who called him to do the work of sharing the gospel. God helped Paul preach with courage even when he was in danger. Paul boarded the ship to Jerusalem, uncertain of the future but certain of the goodness and grace of the Lord Jesus.

FAMILY STARTING POINTS 

  • Babies and Toddlers
    • The church grows when people believe the good news.
    • Paul told people about Jesus everywhere he went.
    • The church grew in the places Paul preached.
    • Telling people about Jesus is most important.
    • God makes us more like Jesus.
  • Preschool
    • Paul told as many people as he could about Jesus.
    • What is sanctification? Sanctification is how God makes us more like Jesus.
  • Kids
    • Paul used every opportunity to tell people about Jesus. 
    • What is sanctification? Sanctification is the process of becoming more like Jesus by the power of the Holy Spirit.

UNIT KEY PASSAGE

  • 1 Timothy 6:12

NEXT WEEK 

  • “Paul Was Arrested” (Acts 21–23)

Sunday Morning 6/27: Unit 33, Session 4: Paul Gave Hope

Consider how your life would change if you knew the future—if you could accurately predict the weather or outcomes of baseball games. If you could know how your life is going to turn out, would you live today differently? In the bigger picture of God’s plan for the world, we do know the future. God reveals the outcome of His plan for humanity in His Word. 

In the Book of 1 Thessalonians, Paul wrote about the future to encourage believers facing persecution. Their hope as believers then is the same as our hope as believers today. We look forward to a final resurrection, the return of Jesus, and the judgment of the world.

Around AD 50, the city of Thessalonica was filled with those who worshiped idols, Greek and Roman gods, and even the Roman emperor himself. So when Paul started a church there, he quickly faced persecution and was forced to flee the city. Even though he could not return, Paul still loved the young church and was concerned for them, so he sent Timothy to check on the believers.

Timothy reported back with good news—though the church was suffering from persecution, they were holding tightly to their faith. They did have some misunderstandings about Christianity, especially the return of Jesus, but they were working hard for the Lord. Paul wrote a letter to encourage the believers and to clear up misunderstandings about the future and what happens when Christians die.

Perhaps Paul’s greatest message was about the return of Jesus. On that day, Paul said, believers will be freed from their sufferings. On the Day of the Lord, Jesus will return for His people and judge the wicked. That’s a promise we can still claim today.

Paul’s letter gave believers hope. The hope we find in the Bible is stronger than just wanting something to happen; biblical hope is expecting with confidence because we know God is faithful and true.

The prophets in the Old Testament told about the Day of the Lord, a day when God would come to judge the world and save His people. Paul said that in the future, on the Day of the Lord, Jesus will return for His people and judge the wicked. Believers live with hope, knowing that Jesus will come again.

FAMILY STARTING POINTS 

  • Babies and Toddlers
    • The Bible is God’s Word.
    • Believers live with hope because Jesus will come again.
    • Jesus promised He would come back.
    • Paul helped Christian understand Jesus’ return.
    • Paul said to be ready for Jesus to come back.
  • Preschool
    • Believers have hope because Jesus will come again.
    • What is the Bible about? The Bible is about God’s plan to save people through Jesus.
  • Kids
    • Paul told the church to stand firm as we wait for Jesus’ return. 
    • What is the Bible about? The Bible is the story of God’s plan to save people through Jesus.

UNIT KEY PASSAGE

  • Acts 4:12

NEXT WEEK 

  • “Paul’s Third Journey” (Acts 18–21)

Sunday Morning 6/20: Unit 33, Session 3: No Other Gospel

During his second missionary journey, Paul started several churches in Galatia. Some time later, false teachers crept into these churches and began teaching that there was more to salvation than faith in Jesus. They said that obeying the law of Moses was essential too. 

Many of the Galatian believers became confused and believed the lies of the false teachers. They turned away from the gospel Paul had shared with them. Paul wrote a letter—the Book of Galatians—to correct them and reemphasize a proper understanding of the gospel. 

Paul asked the Galatians how their salvation could be started by an act of the Holy Spirit but then completed by their own conduct. That was foolishness! What the Holy Spirit began, He would also complete.

Jesus’ half-brother James had written a letter to early believers, concerned about Christians’ interpreting grace to mean they didn’t have to obey God. In Galatians, Paul addressed the opposite problem: Christians who focused so much on obedience that they forgot grace. 

James’ message was that grace will always lead to obedience. Paul’s message compliments James’ message: Obedience is impossible apart from grace. Grace and obedience work together in perfect harmony. 

This week’s Bible story provides a wonderful opportunity to help your kids understand that obedience matters. The Bible is full of instructions and commands that we are to obey; however, the beauty of the gospel is that our ability to obey comes not through our own effort but through the Holy Spirit.

The Holy Spirit changes our minds and hearts so that we want to obey God, and He also empowers us to obey. All of salvation—from first trusting to faithful obedience—is God’s gift to us through Jesus. The Holy Spirit changes our minds and hearts so that we want to obey God, and He gives us power to obey. Our righteousness does not come through faith in ourselves but through faith in Jesus.

FAMILY STARTING POINTS 

  • Babies and Toddlers
    • The Bible is God’s Word.
    • Faith in Jesus is a gift from God.
    • God loves all people and sent Jesus to save them.
    • People are saved when they have faith in Jesus.
    • Jesus loves us and gave Himself for us.
  • Preschool
    • Paul taught that believers are saved by faith in Jesus alone.
    • What is the Bible about? The Bible is about God’s plan to save people through Jesus.
  • Kids
    • Believers are saved and grow in godliness by faith in Jesus. 
    • What is the Bible about? The Bible is the story of God’s plan to save people through Jesus.

UNIT KEY PASSAGE

  • Acts 4:12

NEXT WEEK 

  • “Paul Gave Hope” (1–2 Thessalonians)

GLOBAL KIDS’ CAMP

  • A $50 deposit is required at registration.
  • Volunteers must be 9th Grade (completed) through Adults.
  • There are only 30 spots available for K5 completed.

Preview the theme in the video below.

Every great camp needs some great worship! Check out the theme song below for summer 2021.

Sunday Morning 6/13: Unit 33, Session 2: Paul’s Second Journey

Paul was back at the church of Antioch in Syria. The church had sent out Paul and Barnabas to preach the gospel to Jews and Gentiles in places like Lystra and Derbe. Then they returned to the church of Antioch. Some time passed, and Paul wanted to return to some of the cities he visited on his first journey to see how the new believers were doing.

Silas accompanied Paul on his second missionary journey, which is recorded in Acts 15:36–18:22. The pair traveled through Syria and Cilicia (sih LISH ih uh), encouraging believers and strengthening churches. The number of believers in the churches increased daily.

Paul and Silas obeyed the Lord’s call to go to Macedonia. Two major events happened while Paul was in Macedonia. First, a woman named Lydia became a believer. Paul and Silas had gone to the river to pray. They spoke to the women at the river. God opened Lydia’s heart to the good news of the gospel.

Then, a jailer became a believer. This happened when Paul and Silas were thrown into prison. Late at night, an earthquake rocked the prison. The prisoners could have escaped, but they stayed where they were. This was a huge relief to the jailer. Had the prisoners escaped, the jailer would have been punished. In fact, the jailer was ready to kill himself when Paul shouted, “We are all here!” The jailer asked Paul and Silas how to be saved. They told him, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved.” The man believed and was baptized.

Emphasize the Christ connection as you review the Bible story with kids: Lydia, the jailer, and many others were saved because they heard the gospel and believed in Jesus. Paul and Silas preached the same message to all people, no matter who they were: “Believe in the Lord Jesus and you will be saved.” 

Lydia was saved and the jailer was saved because they believed in Jesus. Jesus offers us salvation as a gift. He did all the work to save us by dying on the cross. We do not need to earn salvation; we can receive it by repenting and trusting in Jesus.

FAMILY STARTING POINTS 

  • Babies and Toddlers
    • The Bible is God’s Word.
    • We are saved when we hear and believe the gospel.
    • God sent Paul on another trip.
    • Paul and Silas told Lydia about Jesus.
    • Paul told people about Jesus even in jail!
  • Preschool
    • Paul and Silas told many people about Jesus..
    • What is the Bible about? The Bible is about God’s plan to save people through Jesus.
  • Kids
    • Paul and Silas planted new churches. 
    • What is the Bible about? The Bible is the story of God’s plan to save people through Jesus.

UNIT KEY PASSAGE

  • Acts 4:12

NEXT WEEK 

  • “No Other Gospel” (Galatians 1–3)

Sunday Morning 6/6: Unit 33, Session 1: The Jerusalem Council

The church in Antioch praised God for His grace to Paul on his first missionary journey. Though Paul and Barnabas were strongly opposed in some places, many people heard the gospel and believed. Paul and Barnabas took the gospel to both Jews and Gentiles. But a problem arose when some Christians began saying that the new followers of Jesus—the Gentile believers—needed to obey the Law of Moses in order to be right with God.

Paul and Barnabas debated this issue with other church leaders in Jerusalem. They met together to answer a tough question: Can a person be saved by faith alone or was something more needed? When Paul addressed the council, he insisted that God saves Gentiles the same way He saves Jews: through the grace of the Lord Jesus. 

Paul testified to the things God had done among the Gentiles. God had given Gentiles the Holy Spirit. James cited the prophets Amos and Isaiah in support. The group agreed that because of Jesus’ death and resurrection, He alone is all we need to be saved. They also agreed that they should not make salvation more difficult for Gentiles by adding unnecessary rules.

The church chose two men—Judas and Silas—to go with Paul and Barnabas to the church at Antioch. They wrote a letter for the Gentile believers there, encouraging them and giving them instructions for how to live as followers of Christ.

The message for the Gentile believers was important: Whether Jew or Gentile, salvation comes only through faith in Christ. No one is saved by the law but by grace alone. Emphasize to the kids you teach that, while the Bible does give us plenty of instruction for how to live, sinners are made right with God only by the grace of Jesus. Salvation is a gift. To receive this gift, Jesus is all we need.

The church leaders met in Jerusalem to answer a tough question: Can a person be saved by faith alone or is something more needed? The early church agreed that because of Jesus’ death and resurrection, He alone is all we need to be saved.

FAMILY STARTING POINTS 

  • Babies and Toddlers
    • The Bible is God’s Word.
    • Jesus is all we need to have life with God forever.
    • Some people were confused about the good news.
    • Paul said that only Jesus saves people.
    • Anyone who trusts in Jesus will be saved.
  • Preschool
    • Jesus is all we need to be saved from sin.
    • What is the Bible about? The Bible is about God’s plan to save people through Jesus.
  • Kids
    • Salvation comes only through faith in Jesus.
    • What is the Bible about? The Bible is the story of God’s plan to save people through Jesus.

UNIT KEY PASSAGE

  • Acts 4:12

NEXT WEEK 

  • “Paul’s Second Journey” (Acts 15–18)