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Sunday School is a vital part of any ministry. In it one is able to experience a deeper knowledge of God’s Word. We here at “Word For Life Says” want to help you help others. Below you will find resources to help you prepare for your upcoming lessons. May God bless you!
April 7, 2013 – Feel free to print out lesson using the print button below or print this document here: Sunday School Lesson Promises Kept. Many Activities Listed Below! Enjoy!
While I was growing up my mother had a famous phrase she would say to us. If we got into trouble, or even thought about getting into trouble, she gave us a warning ahead of time. She would let us know, in no uncertain terms, that punishment would be inevitable. Then, she would punctuate what she was saying with this statement: “It’s not a threat, it’s a promise.” For us, that meant she was very serious and we had better take it seriously, too.
Promises are for the most part a word that brings anticipation. It’s like the mythical looking for a pot of gold at the end of a rainbow. We know the reward of the promise is on the other side, we just have to go from here to there to reach it, going from the words leaving the mouth or being written to the fulfillment at the other end.
Promises are so important that even children, in their own juvenile way, get involved in trying to solidly found a trust with one another (ever heard of a pinky swear?). Sometimes parents step up and give promise rings to their children validating their love and support for them. It encourages them in their relationship with their parents that they belong to them and they will be there for them.
Promises are important no matter which way you look at it. Specifically so when God is the issuer and the fulfiller of said promises. What God says goes. Period. That’s it – end of discussion! What He promises will come to pass for better or for worse.
Today’s lesson picks up at the very next verse where we left off last week’s lesson which was Luke 24:35. If you remember, the two disciples on the road to Emmaus have just seen the risen Christ for who He really is. When He vanished before them, they immediately returned to Jerusalem and told the others what occurred.
This is where the beginning of today’s lesson picks up. As they are discussing all the events, sightings and stories of the risen Lord, “Jesus Himself” appeared “in the midst” of them. If the disciples weren’t flabbergasted before, now they are jaw-dropped-freaked-out-scared! Who wouldn’t be? Dude was dead! Now, here in the midst He stands, “Jesus Himself.” Not His ghost, but in the flesh!
Then, He speaks. “Peace be unto you.” It was not unusual for men to greet each other in such a fashion. Isn’t it amazing that at this extraordinary event, Jesus gives a casual greeting of “peace.” I think at this moment “peace” is the best thing that Jesus could offer the dismayed disciples.
Can you hear the “But . . . but . . . but . . . but’s” tumbling out of their mouths as they tried to comprehend it all. They were described as being “terrified and affrighted.” These courses of events were not natural. Dead people just don’t appear in a blink of an eye and start to hold a conversation.
They thought they had “seen a spirit.” This wasn’t the first time Jesus showed Himself in a supernatural way that led them to believe He was a spirit. In Matthew 14:26 “the disciples saw him walking on the sea, they were troubled, saying, It is a spirit; and they cried out for fear,” (KJV).
He took control over the elements when He was alive. Now, in His post-resurrection body nothing can stop Him. Not even the closed doors (John 20:19). Nothing can hinder Jesus from getting to His followers (now, that’s a message all by itself) and it’s also part of the promise He gave to be with them, Mt. 28:20.
I like the questions Jesus asks. He so matter-of-fact and blunt. “Why are ye troubled? Why do thoughts arise in your hearts?” Yes, they heard Jesus say before He died, “The Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected . . . and be slain, and be raised the third day,” (Luke 9:22, KJV). But, the reality of it didn’t sink in until they were staring at Him face to face.
At this point I really don’t know how the disciples were responding or if they were responding at all. Were they held hostage in a state numbness? Perhaps this is why Jesus felt the need to be so demonstrative.
“Behold.” Take careful heed to pay attention to “my hands and feet.” As a baby’s birth mark identifies her to her parents, and each of our fingerprints identifies who we are, the scars these hands and feet bore proof that identified this man standing here as Jesus Christ. He was completely alive!
“Handle me . . . for a spirit hath not flesh and bones.” Though He was now limitless in His capacity to do things, His body still held the human qualities of being alive. He had flesh and bones. If they were to “handle” Him, what would they feel? If you’ve ever viewed a body in a casket and touched it, you know how they feel. Lifeless. Cold. Hard. With so much make-up on sometimes they are unrecognizable. Not so for Jesus. He was warm. His flesh was soft and it moved as any alive man’s could. His hands and feet showed the world the grave has been defeated once and for all.
“He took it and did eat before them.” Dead people have no need for food. A spirit has no need for bodily nourishment. While Jesus is building the faith of the disciples, He is also giving us a glimpse into our future in heaven. When that day comes we will have resurrected bodies also (1 Cor. 15:20 talks about Jesus being the “firstfruit of them that slept” indicating that we will rise as He did). Not spirits wisping in the winds. Bodies that can sit down and feast at the “marriage supper of the Lamb,” (Rev. 19:9).
“All things must be fulfilled.” That word “must” is a key component here. It almost acts like a command word marching forth to fulfill the instructions it was given. It has to happen!
“Fulfilled.” Must + Fulfilled = Promises Kept. This is the gist of our lesson. Jesus was not only reiterating what He taught them “while I was with you,” but He was boosting their faith in God, what He spoke that He will also fulfill. As horrific as the promise of the cross was, it came to pass to produce a glorious resurrection. These men who would be responsible for carrying the gospel to all the world had to believe every step of the way that God was sovereignly in control.
That’s what a promise kept is. It is events playing our according to His holy timetable until they reach the point of manifestation. God cannot make a promise and not fulfill it. “God is not a man, that he should lie, neither to the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said and shall not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall not make it good?” (Num. 23:19, KJV). Over and over again, what He has spoken will happen (compare Num. 14:35; Ps. 89:34; Ps. 110:4; Is. 40:8; Is. 55:11; Heb. 6:18).
“Which were written.” What exactly was written? From the time of the Fall of man God has pronounced a promise of a Messiah. One who would free mankind from the tyranny of sin. In Genesis 3:15, where God is speaking to the serpent, it tells us, “And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head,” (KJV). The NIV uses the word “crush” in reference to the Messiah coming to gain the victory and thus fulfill the promise made.
“He opened their understanding.” Forever the teacher, Jesus doesn’t do a reappearing act and then leave them confused and frustrated over their lack of understanding. He fortifies them in the Word. In order for them to become the powerhouses of being the first Church leaders, they themselves would need to be fully enlightened. His mission would become their mission and they needed to know all the who’s, what’s, where’s, when’s, how’s and why’s. They need to know how prophecy became fulfilled in Christ and be readily able to teach it to others.
“That repentance and remission should be preached in his name.” Next week’s lesson takes us to Pentecost where they received the Holy Ghost (Acts 2:4). After that in filling, Peter, with boldness, preached a powerful sermon declaring “Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost,” (Acts 2:38, KJV). The words that Christ taught in today’s lesson were definitely taken to heart and put fully into action.
“Repent.” We like the idea of making a u-turn in life. Once we were going in the wrong direction, and then we sought the right way. A complete change in one’s life actions and mind, in his/hers way of thinking.
“Remission.” Forgiveness. The message for them to preach is God is ready to wipe the slate clean. How many people wouldn’t jump at the chance to receive a do-over? Another chance? In this message, we realize that the promise is still kept. “As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us,” (Ps. 103:12, KJV). All of Isaiah 53 prophesied of this Messiah by whom sins would be forgiven. “Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him . . . thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin,” (Is. 53:10, KJV).
These verse parallel Acts 1. In both we see the command to wait in Jerusalem for the promise of the Father (Luke 24:49 & Acts 1:4). We see the word “witness” (Luke 24:48 & Acts 1:8). A witnesses job is to testify to what they have seen and know. We see “power” (Luke 24:49 & Acts 1:8). We’ll get more into “power” in next week’s lesson. And, we see the Ascension, where Jesus was taken up in the clouds from their presence (Luke 24:51 & Acts 1:9).
What better way to respond to all that has happened then to 1) Worship; 2) Be obedient (returned to Jerusalem as Jesus commanded); 3) Be unified in the temple where together they were “praising and blessing God.” God’s promises will never fail. Armed with that truth we should not be reluctant to worship, obey and be unified in the temple.
Below you will find activities to help supplement the lesson for this week. I hope you find them useful. God bless you. Enjoy!
“Promises Kept” Draw the scene: Promises Kept Drawing Scenes
Below I used templates to create this “Promise Tree.” God’s Word is like the seed which sprouts up into a promised fulfilled. Students can then write on the leaves some of the promises of God. My 10 year old helped me make this one:
Tree and leaves template from DLTK. Add any seed or nut to the bottom and write your promises from God. Enjoy!
Using Fruit Loops cereal I made this rainbow plate (since rainbows are synonomous with God’s promises). Cut out some yellow triangles and a simple cross and you have yourself a fruity rainbow of promise. Enjoy!
Idea adapted from Familycrafts.about.com. I tweaked to add some sunny personality of promise to it. Enjoy!
Below is a Rainbow Mobile of Promise:
Print out the template from Mssscrafts.com and let the students decorate. Write on it a verse that will remind them of the lesson (I chose Luke 24:44), punch holes in it, string it through and hang it up. Enjoy!
Below are some additional Coloring Sheets and Activities to help reinforce the lesson. Enjoy!
Jesus Appeared to the Disciples, verse 36:
This coloring sheet can be found at Abdaacts
“No Ghost” activity from Childrensermons.com
Another Coloring Sheet of Jesus appearing from Unblog.fr
“My Hands and Feet” verse 39:
“Believe It or Not!” from Sermons4kids
“Identification Please” from Sermon4kids
“Coloring Page” from Zionmilaca.org
“Jesus Coloring Pages” for another coloring sheet of Jesus with Thomas
“Fish” activities for verse 42:
“Printable Sheet” from Kidssundayschoolactivity
Cute hand painting activity from Babble.com
“Fish Puzzle” crafts from Freekidscrafts.com - This is an easy, put together craft with a ready made printable template.
“Fun Foam Fish” activity from Kidssundayschool.com
“All Things Must be Fulfilled” verse 44:
“God’s Promises Fulfilled” activities from Sermon4kids
“God’s Promises Come True” stories from Childrens Bible Stories
Get this coloring sheet from Lessons4sundayschool.com
Get this coloring sheet from Sermons4kids.com
“God Keeps Promises” coloring page from Sermon4kids.com
“God Keeps His Promise” rainbow coloring sheet from Makinglearningfun.com
“A Promise” song to teach children from Dltk.com
“Telling Others/Witnesses” verses 47-48:
“Telling Others About Jesus” coloring page from Sermons4kids.com
“Mission Possible” activities from Sermons4kids.com
“The Ascension” activities for verse 51:
“The Ascension” activity printables from Kidsclubs4jesus.com
“The Ascension of Jesus” maze from Sermons4kids.com
Get this coloring sheet from Sermons4kids.com
“Ascension” coloring sheet from Abdaacts.com