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Christian Heroes through the Ages

A study of male and female Christian heroes, such as William Wilberforce, David Livingston, Eric Liddle, John Flynn, Mother Teresa, Martin Luther King, Desmond Tutu, Bethany Hamilton, Bear Grylls, Bono, etc.

Rationale

In the same way that the Bible is full of people from whose lives we can learn to walk in faith, so Church history is full of many great people who have lived in faith and left behind them a great legacy for the Church. In them we see ourselves and see how we too might walk with God. The focus here is on historical heroes of faith.

Key Concepts

  • In the beginning God created us in his image, and in Christ that image is re-created, so that we might glorify God through our lives
  • Christianity is ‘Christ in you” Colossians 1:27
  • We are empowered  by the Holy Spirit to walk in faith and obedience
  • Through us Jesus, we are his Body, continues the work he started when he was here
  • From our brothers and sisters we can learn how we should and can glorify God and loves our neighbours

Scripture References

Genesis 1:26,27 _ created in the image of God to glorify God
Colossians 3:1-17 - the new life we are live in Christ to glorify God
Acts 1 - Everything that Jesus began to do and teach is continued through the Church by the power of the Holy Spirit 
Hebrews 11 - heroes of faith in the Bible are our example and in the same way the heroes of faith in Church history are our examples too
Hebrews 12:1,2 - Great cloud of witnesses, includes all believers through all the centuries

Resources

http://www.christianheroes.com/ - website dedicated to those who changed the world because of Jesus
http://www.christianity.com/church/church-history/church-history-for-kids/ - great list of possible people to look at keyed to a Church history timeline, with short articles to support each person.
https://www.christianhistoryinstitute.org/magazine/  Many articles on the significant figures of Church History
http://www.ywampublishing.com/p-470-christian-heroes-then-nowbrcomplete-set-books-1-42.aspx - YWAM site listing books for purchase, but also giving a list of names which could be explored
http://www.andherewegomama.com/2012/10/cycle-1-christian-missionaries-heroes.html - a Blog, homeschool, with details of their studies in Christian heroes with a listing of resources
https://www.visionvideo.com/ - commercial DVD resources, worth looking at
A Light in the "Dark Ages" (Rome 590 ad - History link)
Christian Heroes from Christian History Companion Guide - pdf - notes on a variety of Christian heroes
 
YouTube examples, worth searching to see what can  be found:
Gladys Aylward
Corrie Ten Boom (note the YouTube channel ‘Preposterous People’)

Jesus You're My Super Hero - 

Biographies of Christian Heroes of Faith - 

Historic Christian Heroes - 

 

Ideas/Strategies for Lessons

Watch a movie, video on a selected person and use as a discussion starter
Raise the issues of a certain person, e.g. will you forgive someone who hurt your family, and use as a lead in to someone who actually faced this problem, e.g. Corrie Ten Boom
Someone comes in dressed as the person and they class interviews them, or students take up the role after studying them
Students research their person and share
Read books/listen to stories about heroic people and create a profile of the virtues of heroes, for display

Possible Historical Figures:

  • Constantine
  • John Wycliffe
  • St Patrick
  • John Calvin
  • Martin Luther
  • Mother Teresa
  • Helen Keller
  • Corrie ten Boom
  • Anne Frank
  • David Livingstone
  • Martin Luther King
  • John Knox
  • CS Lewis
  • Billy Graham
  • Harriet Beecher Stowe
  • John Flynn
  • Eric Liddle
  • Florence Nightingale
  • Spurgeon
  • John Bunyan
  • John Newton
  • William Wilberforce
  • Elizabeth Fry
  • Mary MacKillop