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Tell the World the Good News (Gospel**)

 

Rationale

In the beginning God created all things good, but when sin came into the world it brought with it alienation from God and death, not only in this life but in the life to come. God so loved us, however, and his desire was to give us the abundant life he intended in creation, that he gave his Son Jesus to die on the cross so we could be forgiven, know God and know the fulness of life he intended. This is the heart of Gospel, or Good News. When Jesus rose he was given all authority on earth and in heaven. This being the case he commanded his disciples, and us, to make disciples of all the nations. This is the key command or mission that has been given to the Church. Its importance lies in that regardless of what happens to people in this life, whether good or bad, they will, when they die, enter into an eternal bliss or torment. As important as this life is and the needs of this life, and they are important, people need to hear about Jesus. Children at this age will find concepts like hell difficult to process. So the emphasis should be the more positive aspects of becoming a child of God, and the negative as being missing out on all the good things God wants to do. The full picture can wait until later. The key thought is that we tell people about Jesus because God loves them, so the way we tell them needs to reflect this motivation. For this age group, telling others about Jesus is really about sharing the joy of knowing the one who loves them so much he gave his life for them.
 
** The word Gospel is Old English and meant good news, which comes from the Greek term for good news. Similarly, the word Bible is from Middle English and simply meant book, coming from Greek words for papyrus and materials used for writing books, hence Holy Bible means God’s special book.
 
 

Key Concepts

  • God created the world, and he created it good
  • Sin came into the world and with it pain and death
  • God sent his Son to save us from all the effects of sin
  • The Good News is that Jesus has come (Birth)
  • The Good News is Jesus saves us from sin (Death)
  • The Good News is Jesus has been given all authority in heaven and on Earth (Resurrection)
  • The Good News is Jesus is coming again (Response)
 

Scripture References

Genesis 1-3 - the creation of the world, its original state as good and the entrance of sin and death
Isaiah 9:1-7 - to us a Son is given
Matthew 1:18 - 25 - the birth of Jesus, who will save us from our sins
Matthew 28 - the resurrection and commission to make disciples of the all the nations
Luke 2 - the birth of Jesus, including the announcement by angels to the shepherds watching their sheep
Luke 24 - the resurrection and the post resurrections appearances and the command to be witnesses to all the nations
John 19 & 20 - the resurrection, the appearances to the disciples and the sending by Jesus to go into the world
1 Corinthians 15:1-11 - the key point of the Gospel
Isaiah 52:7 - how beautiful are the feet
Mark 1:14-15 - the preaching of Jesus
Acts 8:34-35 - Phillip sharing the Gospel
1 Cor 9:16 - we are obligated to preach the Gospel
Proverbs 11:30 - they who save others are wise
John 4 - the woman at the well in Samaria and the night is coming, so we must work while it is day
Matthew 5: 13-16 - light of the world, salt of the earth
1 Peter 3 and 4 - how Christians should behave in a hostile environment
Romans 12:20 - bless our enemies
 

Resources

 

Ideas/Strategies for Lessons

Songs are a great way for children to express that they believe when they don't know what to say. Teach them lots 'Good News’ songs - see selection of videos above
Get children to share what they find hardest about believing in Jesus and use these as topics for discussion
Get them to imagine they were trying to explain to a friend what a Christian is, what would they say? Teach them the basic Gospel message with Jesus at its core and salvation by faith alone in Jesus
Get students to memorize a selection of Key Passages which will help them to explain about Jesus
Read, watch or listen to Bible stories about Jesus’ birth and make them a discussion and prayer time
Set a prayer list of people they want to pray for who may not know Jesus
Telling about Jesus is not just about speaking, it can also be about doing. Students can create a to do list of ways they can show God’s love to others, especially those who do not know Jesus
Address the issue of being tolerant of those who do not believe and may live differently to the way a Christian lives. This is an important theme in a time when Christianity is under attack, see 1 Peter 3 and 4, and Romans 12:20