Children's Lesson: The Promise of the Holy Spirit
While we are unable to meet for Sunday School, I will post an adaptation of the children's Sunday School lesson every Monday. Think of the lesson as a guide to discuss a story from the Bible together. Each lesson will include some introductory material, a Scripture reading, questions for review and discussion, an activity suggestion, a short prayer, and a memory verse. I encourage you to take just 10-15 minutes every week to actively engage your children or grandchildren in this opportunity to grow together in your faith!
Share some background information before reading the story together.
This week’s story is a continuation of last week’s story (remember, I said Jesus spends a LONG time talking to his disciples after that dinner). As a reminder, though, this story takes place just before Jesus is arrested and crucified. Jesus is together with his disciples celebrating Passover, a Jewish holiday that celebrates how God freed the Israelite slaves in Egypt. This would be the last meal Jesus would have with his disciples before he died, so we often call it the Last Supper.
Jesus knows what is about to happen – that he will be arrested, crucified, but also that he will come back to life. He also knows that Judas, his disciple and friend, will be the one to betray him. He knows that his disciples will be sad, scared, and confused. He talks to them to try to prepare them and bring them some comfort.
He talks to them about loving him, hearing his word, keeping his commandments, and the gift of the Holy Spirit. Last week, we talked about how Jesus is preparing a place for us with God and that there’s room for everyone! Jesus wants them to understand that loving Jesus means following his commandments. Jesus wants them to love God and love others. God gives us the Holy Spirit to walk with us, help us, and sustain us as we follow God. Jesus’ words helped the disciples know what to do and comforted them, and his words can do the same for us!
Read some of Jesus’ last words to his disciples in our Scripture passage for this week. You can read the story from the Bible or the simplified version of the story from the Spark Story Bible below.
Jesus loved his disciples. He knew he was going to heaven soon and wanted to make sure they weren’t afraid. Jesus and his friends sat down on the soft grass. Jesus said, “It’s important to remember all I’ve taught you. Love God. Love other people. Help each other. Remember, God is most important. God will always love you.”
Jesus looked at each of his friends’ faces. He cared so much for each of them! “I promise I’ll always love you and everyone who comes after you. I won’t be here much longer. But don’t worry! God’s Holy Spirit will be with you always. The Holy Spirit will help you and God’s children forever.” The disciples trusted Jesus and the promise he made.
- What commands did Jesus give his disciples? If you read the story from the Bible, go back and read John 13:34-35 (an earlier part of Jesus’ speech). Love God. Love other people. Help each other.
- What promises does Jesus give his disciples? Jesus loves them. God’s Holy Spirit will be with them and help them always.
- What do you think it means to “keep Jesus’ commandments”? It means to “hold them dear” or “remember their importance.” We all mess up sometimes, and God knows that! Keeping God’s commandments just means that we try our best to follow them.
- Jesus wants us to love God and love others. What can we do to show God we love Him? What can we do to show others love?
- Jesus promised that the Holy Spirit would always be with us to help us. What’s something you can do to help you remember that the Holy Spirit is always with you?
Our story today reminds us that our faith leads us to love others. Each person in the family should think of one thing that they can do on their own for someone else. Share your ideas with one another. As a family, come up with one (or more!) things you can do this week to love or help someone outside of your family.
Dear God, thank you for giving us the Holy Spirit to always be with us. We love you. Help us follow your commands and love others. Amen.
“If you love me, you will keep my commandments.” John 14:15