Thursday, February 21, 2019

Jesus' Death and Resurrection Children's Sunday School Lessons - 5 Lessons for Good Friday and Easter


Includes 5 lessons!

Jesus is Arrested

Use this children’s Sunday School lesson to teach kids about Jesus praying in the Garden, Judas’ betrayal, and Peter’s denial.


Needed: Bibles, dice


Intro Game: Traitor Among Us! – Have students close their eyes. Explain that when you walk among them and tap one student on the shoulder, that student is the Traitor. When you tap them, they should look up and point to another student.

Have everyone open their eyes and say that the student the Traitor pointed to is not the Traitor. Students then have the opportunity to guess who the Traitor is. If they guess more than one person, have them take a vote. If the majority votes for the actual Traitor, they win and the game is over. Choose a new Traitor and play again.

If the majority is wrong, the person the Traitor pointed at is out. Have everyone close their eyes and then, ask the Traitor to point to another student. The game continues until students guess the real Traitor or the Traitor is one of the last two students left. If the Traitor makes it to the end, they win.

Play as long as time allows. Then, explain that one of Jesus’ disciples was a traitor.


Alternative Intro Game: Jesus Betrayed! – Choose one student to be Jesus. Then, have “Jesus” turn around and choose one of the other students to be the Traitor.

“Jesus” then tries to tag all the other students, but if they tag the Traitor, they’re out. “Jesus” wins when they tag everyone except the Traitor.

Explain that Jesus chose His disciples, but one of them was a traitor.


Lesson: Tell students, The Bible story we’re about to read takes place right after Jesus washed His disciples’ feet and gave them Communion for the first time.


“When they had sung a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives. Then Jesus told them, ‘This very night you will all fall away on account of Me, for it is written: “I will strike the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock will be scattered.”

“’But after I have risen, I will go ahead of you into Galilee.’

“Peter replied, ‘Even if all fall away on account of You, I never will.’

“’Truly I tell you,’ Jesus answered, ‘this very night, before the rooster crows, you will disown Me three times.’”

How did Jesus know that Peter would deny knowing Him? (God told Him. God knows everything even before it happens.)


“Then Jesus went with His disciples to a place called Gethsemane, and He said to them, ‘Sit here while I go over there and pray.’ He took Peter and the two sons of Zebedee along with Him, and He began to be sorrowful and troubled. Then He said to them, ‘My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death. Stay here and keep watch with Me.’”

Jesus said that He was sad. Why do you think He would be sad? (Jesus knew that He was going to die on the cross soon and was afraid because He knew it would hurt.)

Why did Jesus want His friends to pray with Him?

It’s good to help support each other in prayer.

What do you think Jesus wanted the disciples to pray about?

He might have wanted them to pray that He would brave and do what God wanted Him to do. Maybe He wanted to pray for themselves for God to help them stay strong and keep believing in Him when He was arrested and put to death on the cross.


“Going a little farther, He fell with His face to the ground and prayed, ‘My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from Me. Yet not as I will, but as You will.’

“Then He returned to His disciples and found them sleeping. ‘Couldn’t you men keep watch with me for one hour?’ He asked Peter. ‘Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.’

“He went away a second time and prayed, ‘My Father, if it is not possible for this cup to be taken away unless I drink it, may Your will be done.’

“When He came back, He again found them sleeping, because their eyes were heavy. So He left them and went away once more and prayed the third time, saying the same thing.”

What did Jesus decide about His dying?

He decided to do what God wanted Him to do and die. He wanted God to make it so that He wouldn’t have to die, but He said He would die if it was God’s will.

Even though it was hard, Jesus was willing to die because He knew that’s what God wanted Him to do so that He could save us. Jesus loved us and wanted to save us so much that He was willing to die on the cross.

Sometimes, God might ask us to do something hard, too, and we have to be willing to do it because God always has a good reason for telling us to do something. If we listen to God, everything will always work out for the best.


“Then He returned to the disciples and said to them, ‘Are you still sleeping and resting? Look, the hour has come, and the Son of Man is delivered into the hands of sinners. Rise! Let us go! Here comes my betrayer!’

“While he was still speaking, Judas, one of the Twelve, arrived. With him was a large crowd armed with swords and clubs, sent from the chief priests and the elders of the people. Now the betrayer had arranged a signal with them: ‘The one I kiss is the man; arrest him.’ Going at once to Jesus, Judas said, ‘Greetings, Rabbi!’ and kissed Him.

“Jesus replied, ‘Do what you came for, friend.’

“Then the men stepped forward, seized Jesus and arrested Him. With that, one of Jesus’ companions reached for his sword, drew it out and struck the servant of the high priest, cutting off his ear.

“‘Put your sword back in its place,’ Jesus said to him, ‘for all who draw the sword will die by the sword. Do you think I cannot call on My Father, and He will at once put at My disposal more than twelve legions of angels? But how then would the Scriptures be fulfilled that say it must happen in this way?’”

Peter attacked one of the guards that came to arrest Jesus, but Jesus told Peter to put his sword away. Why do you think Jesus didn’t want Peter to fight the guards? (Jesus knew that He had to be arrested so that He could die as the punishment for our sins.)


“In that hour Jesus said to the crowd, ‘Am I leading a rebellion, that you have come out with swords and clubs to capture Me? Every day I sat in the temple courts teaching, and you did not arrest Me. But this has all taken place that the writings of the prophets might be fulfilled.’ Then all the disciples deserted Him and fled.

“Those who had arrested Jesus took Him to Caiaphas the high priest, where the teachers of the law and the elders had assembled. But Peter followed Him at a distance, right up to the courtyard of the high priest. He entered and sat down with the guards to see the outcome.

“The chief priests and the whole Sanhedrin were looking for false evidence against Jesus so that they could put Him to death. But they did not find any, though many false witnesses came forward.

“Finally two came forward and declared, ‘This fellow said, “I am able to destroy the temple of God and rebuild it in three days.’’’

“Then the high priest stood up and said to Jesus, ‘Are You not going to answer? What is this testimony that these men are bringing against You?’ But Jesus remained silent.

“The high priest said to Him, ‘I charge you under oath by the living God: Tell us if you are the Messiah, the Son of God.’

“‘You have said so,’ Jesus replied. ‘But I say to all of you: From now on you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Mighty One and coming on the clouds of heaven.’”

Jesus said that in the future, everyone would see Him coming with power out of the clouds. What do you think that means?

Jesus will come back out of the sky one day and will judge everyone in the whole world, sending those people who don’t believe in Him to Hell and bringing everyone who does believe in Him back to life and making them live forever.


“Then the high priest tore his clothes and said, ‘He has spoken blasphemy! Why do we need any more witnesses? Look, now you have heard the blasphemy. What do you think?’

“‘He is worthy of death,’ they answered.

“Then they spit in His face and struck Him with their fists. Others slapped him and said, ‘Prophesy to us, Messiah. Who hit you?’

“Now Peter was sitting out in the courtyard, and a servant girl came to him. ‘You also were with Jesus of Galilee,’ she said.

“But he denied it before them all. ‘I don’t know what you’re talking about,’ he said.

“Then he went out to the gateway, where another servant girl saw him and said to the people there, ‘This fellow was with Jesus of Nazareth.’

“He denied it again, with an oath: ‘I don’t know the man!’”

Why did Peter say that he didn’t know Jesus? (He was afraid and thought that he might be arrested, too, for being Jesus’ follower.)

But we should never be afraid to tell people that we’re followers of Jesus. We should never be embarrassed to say we believe in Jesus.


“After a little while, those standing there went up to Peter and said, ‘Surely you are one of them; your accent gives you away.’

“Then he began to call down curses, and he swore to them, ‘I don’t know the man!’

“Immediately a rooster crowed. Then Peter remembered the word Jesus had spoken: ‘Before the rooster crows, you will disown Me three times.’ And he went outside and wept bitterly.”

Why was Peter crying? (He felt bad for saying he didn’t know Jesus.)


“Early in the morning, all the chief priests and the elders of the people made their plans how to have Jesus executed. So they bound Him, led Him away and handed Him over to Pilate the governor.

“When Judas, who had betrayed Him, saw that Jesus was condemned, he was seized with remorse and returned the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and the elders. ‘I have sinned,’ he said, ‘for I have betrayed innocent blood.’

“’What is that to us?’ they replied. ‘That’s your responsibility.’

“So Judas threw the money into the temple and left. Then he went away and hanged himself.”

Why did Judas give back the money and then hang himself? (He felt guilty for being a traitor to Jesus and telling the guards where to find Him so that they could arrest Him.)

Was it good for Judas to hang himself? (No.)

What should he have done instead? (He should have asked God to forgive him.)

When we do something wrong, we should ask God for forgiveness. God will always forgive us when we ask Him to because He loves us.


Game: Raising the Dice – Remind students that Jesus wanted His disciples to pray with Him before He was arrested. Then, divide students into two teams and give each time a six-sided die. The first student from each team runs up to a table and rolls their dice. The student with the highest roll gets a point for their team.

The trick is that each team can help their player. As the students are rolling their die, the teams cheer. The team that’s the loudest gets to add one number to their player’s die roll. So, if Team A’s player rolls a 3, but their team is cheering the loudest, you’ll count that player’s roll as a 4.

Students re-roll in case of a tie, but only if the tie occurs after you add the cheering bonus.

After the first two students roll and you determine who gets the point, those students run back to their teams, hand off their die, and the next students run up. The team with the most points after everyone has rolled wins.

Explain that when we pray for someone, it’s like we’re cheering for them. We’re asking God to help them.


Game: Traitor Among Us! or Jesus Betrayed! – Play one of the intro games again and remind students that even though Judas betrayed Jesus, he could have asked God to forgive him, and God would have. God will always forgive us if we ask Him to.


Closing Prayer: Jesus, we thank You for being willing to die on the cross to take our punishment. And we thank You that You always forgive us. Help us to trust in You as we wait for You to come back and make it so that we can live forever with You. Amen.




Jesus Dies and Takes Away Our Sins

Use this children’s Sunday School lesson to teach children about how Jesus died for us to forgive us for our sins.


Needed: Bibles, rotten food, candy bars, newspaper or other paper, Silly Putty or the following: food coloring, white glue, liquid starch (like Sta-Flo for laundry), measuring cups, sandwich baggies


Intro Game: Taking Our Place – Divide students into two teams for a game of Freeze Tag. Choose one team to be It, chasing the other team. Then, choose one student from the team being chased. They are “Jesus.” They cannot be tagged. They can go stand in the place of a frozen team member, allowing them to run again. When “Jesus” takes the place of someone else, they must stay there for 3 seconds since Jesus was in the grave for three days.

Before the game, set a timer for 3 or 5 minutes, depending on how many students you have. If the team chasing the other gets everyone out within that time limit, they win. If they don’t, the team being chased wins.

Switch roles and play again.


Lesson: Read Matthew 27:11.

“Meanwhile Jesus stood before the governor, and the governor asked Him, ‘Are you the king of the Jews?’

“’You have said so,’ Jesus replied.”

Why did Pilate ask Jesus if He was the King of the Jews?

If Jesus was a king, He might have tried to take over the country and fight the Romans ,and Pilate can’t let Jesus start a war against the Romans because Pilate works for the Roman government.

Why did Jesus say that He is the King of the Jews?

Jesus is the descendant of King David, which means He is the rightful King. Jesus is also God, so He is the King of everything.


“When He was accused by the chief priests and the elders, He gave no answer. Then Pilate asked Him, ‘Don’t you hear the testimony they are bringing against You?’ But Jesus made no reply, not even to a single charge—to the great amazement of the governor.”

Why didn’t Jesus answer any more of Pilate’s questions?

Jesus didn’t want to defend Himself. He knew He was supposed to let Pilate crucify Him so that He could die for our sins.


“Now it was the governor’s custom at the festival to release a prisoner chosen by the crowd. At that time they had a well-known prisoner whose name was Jesus Barabbas. So when the crowd had gathered, Pilate asked them, ‘Which one do you want me to release to you: Jesus Barabbas, or Jesus who is called the Messiah?’ For he knew it was out of self-interest that they had handed Jesus over to him.

“While Pilate was sitting on the judge’s seat, his wife sent him this message: ‘Don’t have anything to do with that innocent man, for I have suffered a great deal today in a dream because of Him.’

“But the chief priests and the elders persuaded the crowd to ask for Barabbas and to have Jesus executed.

“‘Which of the two do you want me to release to you?’ asked the governor.

“‘Barabbas,’ they answered.

“‘What shall I do, then, with Jesus who is called the Messiah?’ Pilate asked.

“They all answered, ‘Crucify Him!’

“‘Why? What crime has he committed?’ asked Pilate.

“But they shouted all the louder, ‘Crucify Him!’

“When Pilate saw that he was getting nowhere, but that instead an uproar was starting, he took water and washed his hands in front of the crowd. ‘I am innocent of this man’s blood,’ he said. ‘It is your responsibility!’

“All the people answered, ‘His blood is on us and on our children!’

“Then he released Barabbas to them. But he had Jesus flogged, and handed Him over to be crucified.

“Then the governor’s soldiers took Jesus into the Praetorium and gathered the whole company of soldiers around Him. They stripped Him and put a scarlet robe on Him, and then twisted together a crown of thorns and set it on His head. They put a staff in His right hand. Then they knelt in front of Him and mocked Him. ‘Hail, king of the Jews!’ they said. They spit on Him, and took the staff and struck Him on the head again and again. After they had mocked Him, they took off the robe and put His own clothes on Him. Then they led Him away to crucify Him.

“As they were going out, they met a man from Cyrene, named Simon, and they forced him to carry the cross. They came to a place called Golgotha (which means ‘the place of the skull’). There they offered Jesus wine to drink, mixed with gall; but after tasting it, He refused to drink it. When they had crucified Him, they divided up His clothes by casting lots. And sitting down, they kept watch over Him there. Above His head they placed the written charge against Him: this is Jesus, the king of the Jews.

“Two rebels were crucified with Him, one on His right and one on His left. Those who passed by hurled insults at Him, shaking their heads and saying, ‘You who are going to destroy the temple and build it in three days, save Yourself! Come down from the cross, if you are the Son of God!’ In the same way the chief priests, the teachers of the law and the elders mocked Him. ‘He saved others,’ they said, ‘but He can’t save Himself! He’s the king of Israel! Let Him come down now from the cross, and we will believe in Him. He trusts in God. Let God rescue Him now if He wants Him, for He said, ‘I am the Son of God.’’ In the same way the rebels who were crucified with Him also heaped insults on Him.

“From noon until three in the afternoon darkness came over all the land. About three in the afternoon Jesus cried out in a loud voice, ‘Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?’ (which means ‘My God, my God, why have You forsaken Me?’).”

When Jesus was on the cross, why did He say, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?”

Jesus had taken all the sins of everyone in the whole world on Himself. He had to take our sins on Himself so that He could take away our sins for us and save us.

But having all those sins on Him meant that God didn’t want to be with Him. When we have sin in our lives, God doesn’t want to be with us because God doesn’t want to be around people who do bad things. If we ask for forgiveness and stop doing bad things, then God will come to be with us again.


“When some of those standing there heard this, they said, ‘He’s calling Elijah.’

“Immediately one of them ran and got a sponge. He filled it with wine vinegar, put it on a staff, and offered it to Jesus to drink. The rest said, ‘Now leave Him alone. Let’s see if Elijah comes to save Him.’

“And when Jesus had cried out again in a loud voice, He gave up His spirit.

“At that moment the curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. The earth shook, the rocks split and the tombs broke open. The bodies of many holy people who had died were raised to life. They came out of the tombs after Jesus’ resurrection and went into the holy city and appeared to many people.

When the centurion and those with him who were guarding Jesus saw the earthquake and all that had happened, they were terrified, and exclaimed, ‘Surely He was the Son of God!’

“Many women were there, watching from a distance. They had followed Jesus from Galilee to care for His needs. Among them were Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James and Joseph, and the mother of Zebedee’s sons.

“As evening approached, there came a rich man from Arimathea, named Joseph, who had himself become a disciple of Jesus. Going to Pilate, he asked for Jesus’ body, and Pilate ordered that it be given to him. Joseph took the body, wrapped it in a clean linen cloth, and placed it in his own new tomb that he had cut out of the rock. He rolled a big stone in front of the entrance to the tomb and went away. Mary Magdalene and the other Mary were sitting there opposite the tomb.”


Object Lesson: Give kids something unpleasant, such as a rotten banana or something. Have a row of good prizes lined up, like candy bars. Ask each child if they’d like to keep what they have (the bad thing) or trade it for one of the prizes. It should be a no-brainer.

After everyone has made their choice, explain that Jesus takes our sin and gives us the best thing of all, life forever with God.


Craft: Taking Our Sin Have students make silly putty or bring some in for each student. Have them practice using the silly putty to copy print or pictures off of a newspaper or other printed paper.

After they’ve played with it for a few minutes, explain that Jesus took our sins on Himself when He died on the cross.

To make silly putty: Tell students to pour 1/4 cup of white glue, a few drops of food coloring, and 1/8 cup of liquid starch into a sandwich baggie. Close the baggie and knead the mixture with your fingers through the baggie until it gains the right consistency. If it is not hardening properly, add a little more liquid starch.


Game: Taking Our Place – Play the intro game again, reminding students that Jesus took our place when He took our punishment and died on the cross for us.


Closing Prayer: Jesus, we thank You for taking the punishment for our sins so that we could be forgiven. Help us to believe and trust in You always. Amen.




The Real Meaning of the Easter Basket

Use this children’s Sunday School lesson to teach kids the symbolism of the Easter basket.


Needed: Easter basket, Easter grass, chocolate coins or chocolate with some kind of shiny wrapping (Hershey’s Kisses, York Peppermint Patties, etc.), chicken or rooster-shaped candy (a chocolate rooster, or chick-shaped Peeps), a plastic egg with something inside of it, rolls of toilet paper, cones or another place marker


Intro Game: The Life of Jesus Relay – Divide students into two or more teams. When you say, “Go!” the first student on each team will perform the first leg of the relay race, traveling to the other side of your play area and back to their team. The second student on each team then does the second leg, and so on until that team completes the last leg. The first team to complete all legs of the race wins.

Leg 1. Crying. Cry like a baby to show Jesus was born as a baby.

Leg 2. Crawl. Crawl like a baby to show that Jesus had to crawl when he was little.

Leg 3. Slow Walk. Walk slowly like a one-year-old to show that Jesus had to learn to walk.

Leg 4. Run. Run like a child, as Jesus did when He was a boy.

Leg 5. Hammer the Ground. Hit the ground like you’re a man hammering nails to show that Jesus learned how to be a carpenter.

Leg 6. Spin. Spin around saying, “You’re healed! You’re healed!” to show that Jesus helped all the people around Him.

Leg 7. Crucifix Run. Run with your arms outstretched to the sides to show that Jesus was crucified on a cross.

Leg 8. Backward Walk. Walk backward with your arms crossed over your chest to show that Jesus died.

Leg 9. Skip. Skip, yelling, “Ta-da!” to show that Jesus came back to life.


Lesson: Place objects in your Easter basket beforehand so that it’s ready to show to students.

Ask students, how many of you got an Easter basket this morning?

Did any of your Easter baskets have this grass in the bottom? (Pull out some grass from your basket.) The grass reminds us of the hay that Jesus slept on in the manger when He was born.

Did any of you get any chocolate wrapped up in shiny foil, like Hershey Kisses, or York Peppermint Patties, or Rolos, or Reeses’ miniatures? (Pull out your chocolate coins.) When we see shiny wrapping, it reminds us of the 30 shiny coins that the priests gave to Judas so that Judas would tell them where Jesus was so that they could arrest Him.

Did any of you get any roosters or chickens in your Easter basket, like a chocolate rooster, or some Peeps? (Pull out your item.) Chickens and roosters remind us of how Peter said that He didn’t know Jesus three times the night Jesus was arrested, and then, a rooster crowed just as Jesus said it would, and Peter felt sorry about saying He didn’t know Jesus.

What about your baskets? Did it look like mine with the wood or plastic pieces woven together like this? Our baskets remind us of how the soldiers tied together some thorns and put them on Jesus’ head.

Did any of you get plastic eggs with something inside of them? (Show your plastic egg and empty it.) When we take the candy out of our eggs, it reminds us of how Jesus came out of the grave. The egg is like the grave, and the candy is like Jesus, coming out of the grave.

So, our Easter baskets were meant to tell us the story of how Jesus was born, how He died, and how He came back to life on Easter!


Game: Resurrection Race Divide students into pairs. Have each pair line up along one line. Place cones a good distance from the line, directly in front of the pairs.

Give each pair two rolls of toilet paper. On, “Go!” the first person from each pair will wrap their partner in toilet paper, using the whole roll. The wrapped person will then break free of the toilet paper and run around the cone and back toward their partner. They will then wrap their partner, and the second person will do the same thing. The first pair to have both people wrapped and run around the cone wins.

Explain to students that this is what will happen to us. Our bodies will be dead, but then when Jesus comes back, He will bring our bodies back to life, just like God brought Jesus’ body back to life.


Game: Resurrection Tag – Pick one student to be It. That student is Death. Pick another student to be Jesus. When Death tags someone, they fall down and lie on the ground like they’re dead. Jesus can then come to tag them, and they can get back up. If Death tags Jesus, Jesus must count to three (because Jesus was dead for three days), but can then get up again. If Jesus tags Death, the round is over. Play until everyone has had a chance to be both Death and Jesus or as long as time permits.

Remind students that Jesus will come back one day and will raise everyone who believes in Him back to life, just as God raised Jesus back to life on Easter morning.


Closing Prayer: Jesus, we thank You for taking our place on the cross and for coming again one day to raise us all up so that we can live forever with You. Amen.



Jesus is Raised!

Use this children’s Sunday School lesson to teach kids about Jesus’ resurrection on Easter Sunday and our resurrection when He comes again.


Needed: Bibles, toilet paper rolls, cones or another placement marker


Lesson: Read Matthew 27:62-66.)

“The next day, the one after Preparation Day, the chief priests and the Pharisees went to Pilate. ‘Sir,’ they said, ‘we remember that while He was still alive that deceiver said, ‘After three days I will rise again.’ So give the order for the tomb to be made secure until the third day. Otherwise, His disciples may come and steal the body and tell the people that He has been raised from the dead. This last deception will be worse than the first.’

“‘Take a guard,’ Pilate answered. ‘Go, make the tomb as secure as you know how.’ So they went and made the tomb secure by putting a seal on the stone and posting the guard.”

On the Saturday after Jesus died, the priests asked Pilate, the Roman governor, to put guards around Jesus’ grave. Why does it say that they did that? (The priests didn’t want Jesus’ followers to come steal Jesus’ body and then, lie and tell people that Jesus came back to life.)


“After the Sabbath, at dawn on the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to look at the tomb.

“There was a violent earthquake, for an angel of the Lord came down from heaven and, going to the tomb, rolled back the stone and sat on it. His appearance was like lightning, and his clothes were white as snow. The guards were so afraid of him that they shook and became like dead men.

“The angel said to the women, ‘Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. He is not here; He has risen, just as He said. Come and see the place where He lay. Then go quickly and tell His disciples: “He has risen from the dead and is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see Him.” Now I have told you.’

“So the women hurried away from the tomb, afraid yet filled with joy, and ran to tell His disciples. Suddenly Jesus met them. ‘Greetings,’ He said. They came to Him, clasped His feet and worshiped Him. Then Jesus said to them, ‘Do not be afraid. Go and tell My brothers to go to Galilee; there they will see Me.’

How did Jesus come back to life? (After Jesus died, God brought Him back to life.)

God can do anything. He can even make dead people come back to life. One day, when Jesus comes back to Earth, He will make our souls go back into our bodies and bring our bodies back to life. Our bodies will be perfect, and we will live forever with Jesus and God forever.


“While the women were on their way, some of the guards went into the city and reported to the chief priests everything that had happened. When the chief priests had met with the elders and devised a plan, they gave the soldiers a large sum of money, telling them, ‘You are to say, “His disciples came during the night and stole Him away while we were asleep.” If this report gets to the governor, we will satisfy him and keep you out of trouble.’ So the soldiers took the money and did as they were instructed. And this story has been widely circulated among the Jews to this very day.”

Why did the priests pay the guards to lie about Jesus being alive again?

The priests didn’t want people to believe in Jesus, and they didn’t want people to know He came back to life, so they paid the guards to lie about what happened.


Game: Resurrection Race Divide students into pairs. Have each pair line up along one line. Place cones a good distance from the line, directly in front of the pairs.

Give each pair two rolls of toilet paper. On, “Go!” the first person from each pair will wrap their partner in toilet paper, using the whole roll. The wrapped person will then break free of the toilet paper and run around the cone and back toward their partner. They will then wrap their partner, and the second person will do the same thing. The first pair to have both people wrapped and run around the cone wins.

Explain to students that this is what will happen to us. Our bodies will be dead, but then when Jesus comes back, He will bring our bodies back to life, just like God brought Jesus’ body back to life.


Game: Resurrection Tag – Pick one student to be It. That student is Death. Pick another student to be Jesus. When Death tags someone, they fall down and lie on the ground like they’re dead. Jesus can then come to tag them, and they can get back up. If Death tags Jesus, Jesus must count to three (because Jesus was dead for three days), but can then get up again. If Jesus tags Death, the round is over. Play until everyone has had a chance to be both Death and Jesus or as long as time permits.

Remind students that Jesus will come back one day and will raise everyone who believes in Him back to life, just as God raised Jesus back to life on Easter morning.


Closing Prayer: Father God, we praise You for bringing Jesus back to life and for promising to raise us again one day. Help us always to believe in You so that we’ll be ready when Jesus returns one day. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.




The Empty Grave

Use this children’s Sunday School lesson to teach kids about the resurrection of Christ and our resurrection when He comes again.


Needed: Bibles, balloons, a box, three signs saying “Sorry. He’s Not Here!”, cupcakes for each student with re-lighting candles in them


Intro Game: Don’t Let it Fall! – Gather students in a circle. As you toss a balloon up into the air in the middle of the circle, call one of the student’s names. That student must run to hit the balloon back into the air before it touches the ground. The student next to them then runs to hit the balloon. The round continues until the balloon hits the floor.

Play as many rounds as you like. The last time the balloon drops (or if it ever pops), announce, “I’m sorry, kids. The balloon has dropped for the last time and now, it’s dead. Let’s have a funeral for our dear balloon.”

Gather the balloon and place it in the box. Say a few words over it and invite others to do the same.


Lesson: Read John 19:38.

“Later, Joseph of Arimathea asked Pilate for the body of Jesus. Now Joseph was a disciple of Jesus, but secretly because he feared the Jewish leaders. With Pilate’s permission, he came and took the body away.”

It says that Joseph of Arimathea was a disciple of Jesus, but secretly because he was afraid of the Jews. Why do you think he was afraid to tell the Jews that he was a follower of Jesus? (It was against the law to believe in Jesus, so he was afraid that he would be arrested like Jesus was.)

Should he have been afraid to tell people he believed in Jesus? (No.)

We should never be afraid or embarrassed to say that we believe in Jesus. We have to stand up and speak out for Jesus so that other people can believe in Him too and be saved.


“He was accompanied by Nicodemus, the man who earlier had visited Jesus at night. Nicodemus brought a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about seventy-five pounds. Taking Jesus’ body, the two of them wrapped it, with the spices, in strips of linen. This was in accordance with Jewish burial customs. At the place where Jesus was crucified, there was a garden, and in the garden a new tomb, in which no one had ever been laid. Because it was the Jewish day of Preparation and since the tomb was nearby, they laid Jesus there.

“Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene went to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the entrance. So she came running to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one Jesus loved, and said, ‘They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we don’t know where they have put Him!’

“So Peter and the other disciple started for the tomb. Both were running, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. He bent over and looked in at the strips of linen lying there but did not go in. Then Simon Peter came along behind him and went straight into the tomb. He saw the strips of linen lying there, as well as the cloth that had been wrapped around Jesus’ head. The cloth was still lying in its place, separate from the linen. Finally the other disciple, who had reached the tomb first, also went inside. He saw and believed. (They still did not understand from Scripture that Jesus had to rise from the dead.) Then the disciples went back to where they were staying.

“Now Mary stood outside the tomb crying. As she wept, she bent over to look into the tomb and saw two angels in white, seated where Jesus’ body had been, one at the head and the other at the foot.

“They asked her, ‘Woman, why are you crying?’

“‘They have taken my Lord away,’ she said, ‘and I don’t know where they have put Him.’ At this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not realize that it was Jesus.

“He asked her, ‘Woman, why are you crying? Who is it you are looking for?’

“Thinking He was the gardener, she said, ‘Sir, if you have carried Him away, tell me where You have put Him, and I will get Him.’

“Jesus said to her, ‘Mary.’

“She turned toward him and cried out in Aramaic, ‘Rabboni!’ (which means “Teacher”).

“Jesus said, ‘Do not hold on to Me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father. Go instead to my brothers and tell them, “I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.”’

“Mary Magdalene went to the disciples with the news: ‘I have seen the Lord!’ And she told them that He had said these things to her.”

How did Jesus come back to life? (After Jesus died, God brought Him back to life.)

God can do anything. He can even make dead people come back to life. One day, when Jesus comes back to Earth, He will make our souls go back into our bodies and bring our bodies back to life. Our bodies will be perfect, and we will live with Jesus and God forever.

Jesus told Mary that He was going back to God. When had Jesus been with God before?

Jesus was in Heaven with God before He became a human baby. Jesus is part of God Himself.

Now that Jesus’ work of teaching us and dying on the cross for us was done, He said He was going back up to Heaven to be with God again. Someday, Jesus is going to come back to Earth to bring us all back from the dead, and we will live with Him and God forever.


Game: Don’t Let it Fall! part 2 – Play the intro game again, taking the balloon back out of the box or blowing up a new one. Explain that even though your balloon was dead, it came back to life just like Jesus came back to life and will bring all of us back to life when He comes again.


Activity: Resurrection Hunt – Before class, find three rooms or areas in your church that you can use for this activity. In each room, place a large sign that reads, "Sorry. He’s Not Here!"

Say, Wow! What an experience Mary Magdalene, Peter, and John had that morning. Think about it. All three of them went to the tomb and saw that the big rock had been rolled away from the entrance. They looked in and found nothing but the special wrappings that had been around Jesus’ body. For a while, all they could imagine was that someone had stolen Jesus’ body. Then they wondered, What if He really has come back to life?

Today, you’re going hunting for Jesus just as Mary and Peter and John did.

(Take children to visit the rooms you chose earlier. If you’re in an area of your church where you will not disturb others, you can let children run ahead once they know which room you’re heading to. When you get to each room, ask one child to carry away the sign that reads, "Sorry. He’s Not Here!")

(After visiting all the empty rooms, go to where you’ll be serving a snack and say:)

How did you feel each time we got to a room and found the sign telling us Jesus wasn’t there?

Mary Magdalene, Peter, and John were probably pretty disappointed when they couldn’t find Jesus’ body.

When we go looking for something and don’t find it, we have lots of questions. I’m sure Peter and John wondered what had happened to Jesus’ body. But the Bible says that John "saw and believed." That means he knew that Jesus was alive. God wants us to know that Jesus is alive too.

Mary Magdalene, Peter, and John eventually did see Jesus. They found what they were looking for. So, since you all did such a great job looking too, I have something for you.

(Give each student a cupcake with a trick candle in it. Light the candles and have students try to blow them out.)

What happened to the candles? (They kept lighting back up.)

That’s kind of what happened on Easter morning. People thought they had gotten rid Jesus, just as you thought you had blown out your candles. But God had other plans. God brought Jesus back to life, just like your candles kept lighting back up.



Closing Prayer: Father God, we thank You for bringing Jesus back to life. And we thank You that You’re going to bring us back to life one day too. Help us to keep believing in You until that day happens. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.


Good Friday and Easter Recommended Extras

Washed Clean – a free demonstration that uses food coloring and bleach to show how Jesus’ death and resurrection takes away our sins


From Cheers to Jeers – free object lesson, along with free coloring and activity pages

Superbook: He is Risen! – an animated video from the updated Superbook series, includes time-traveling children who learn lessons from the story

He Is Risen!: The Resurrection of Jesus

Greatest Adventures Stories from the Bible: The Easter Story – animated video with time-traveling teenagers who witness the Biblical story, realistic art style


Greatest Heroes and Legends of the Bible: Last Supper, Crucifixion, and Resurrection – another animated video with a Disneyesque art style and no time traveling

Greatest Heroes & Legends of Bible: Complete Series

God’s Story: Easter – a free video telling the story of Jesus, along with application, in about four and a half minutes

Family Life Resurrection Eggs – a set of Easter Eggs with different items inside representing elements of the Easter story
Easter Stickers – an alternative to Easter candy that also reminds kids of the reason for the holy day
He is Alive Easter Lesson – a free lesson that includes a neat activity in which the author recommends placing various items related to the story of Jesus’ death and resurrection in plastic Easter eggs. Kids search for the eggs, open them, and talk about what they know of the Easter story.

God Colors Our Lives – a free object lesson that uses colored Easter eggs to demonstrate how God makes our lives vibrant and exciting

Jesus Rises from the Dead – free coloring and activity pages

The Stone was Rolled Away! – free object lesson, along with free coloring and activity pages

---

All of these lessons are included in my book, He Came, He Saw, He Conquered!
He Came, He Saw, He Conquered! Children Sunday School Lessons on the Death and Resurrection of Jesus by [Wilson, Rev. Stephen R.]
Kindle  $2.99, Print $5.99


Find more resources on my Free Children's Sunday School Lessons page!






No comments:

Post a Comment