Ananias and Sapphira Lie
Use this children’s Sunday School lesson to teach kids about the need to be honest with God.
Needed: Bibles, a potato or other item for each student, coins, offering plate or basket
Intro Game #1: Lie Detector – This game is similar to Two Truths and a Lie. Tell students that you’re going to tell them a story about what happened to you. Most of it will be true, but someone of it won’t be. It’s their job to call out whenever they think you’re saying something that isn’t true.
Intro Game #2: 2X Hot Potato – Have students stand in a circle. Give the potato to one child and have that student pass it to their right, around the circle, as fast as they can while you time them for 30 seconds.
The child holding the potato after 30 seconds is caught with it. If they do not have a potato, they keep the one they’re holding. Give them a second potato to begin passing.
If they already have a potato, they’re out because they can’t hold more than one potato once.
Play a few times and then, explain that God doesn’t want to have too much of something if other people don’t have any of it.
Lesson: Ask students, What are some things that people spend their money on?
Do you think people should ever give some of their money to help other people?
How much money should people give to help others?
(Read Acts 4:32-35.)
“All the believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of their possessions was their own, but they shared everything they had. With great power the apostles continued to testify to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. And God’s grace was so powerfully at work in them all that there were no needy persons among them. For from time to time those who owned land or houses sold them, brought the money from the sales and put it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to anyone who had need.”
The Bible says that the followers of Jesus would sell their farm fields sometimes and give the money they got from their field to help other people. Why do you think the followers of Jesus shared their things and their money with poor people?
The followers of Jesus knew that God loves everyone and that we should help everyone that we can. We don’t simply try to get more and more stuff for ourselves. We should use at least part of our money and what we have to help other people. Christians share.
(Reads Acts 5:1-11.)
“Now a man named Ananias, together with his wife Sapphira, also sold a piece of property. With his wife’s full knowledge he kept back part of the money for himself, but brought the rest and put it at the apostles’ feet.
“Then Peter said, ‘Ananias, how is it that Satan has so filled your heart that you have lied to the Holy Spirit and have kept for yourself some of the money you received for the land? Didn’t it belong to you before it was sold? And after it was sold, wasn’t the money at your disposal? What made you think of doing such a thing? You have not lied just to human beings but to God.’
“When Ananias heard this, he fell down and died. And great fear seized all who heard what had happened. Then some young men came forward, wrapped up his body, and carried him out and buried him.
“About three hours later his wife came in, not knowing what had happened. Peter asked her, ‘Tell me, is this the price you and Ananias got for the land?’
“‘Yes,’ she said, ‘that is the price.’
“Peter said to her, ‘How could you conspire to test the Spirit of the Lord? Listen! The feet of the men who buried your husband are at the door, and they will carry you out also.’
“At that moment she fell down at his feet and died. Then the young men came in and, finding her dead, carried her out and buried her beside her husband. 11 Great fear seized the whole church and all who heard about these events.
One man, Ananias, and his wife, Sapphira, brought some money to the church. They told the followers of Jesus that they were bringing all the money that they had gotten from selling their land. But they weren’t. They were only bringing some of the money, not all of it. Why do you think Ananias and Sapphira said they were bringing all of the money when they really weren’t?
Ananias and Sapphira wanted to brag about how good and giving and generous they were. They wanted everyone to think that they were so good, even though they really weren’t.
Ananias and Sapphira didn’t have to bring all the money they got. They could have brought only some of it, and that would have been fine. But they shouldn’t have lied and said they were bringing all of the money when they really weren’t.
What happened to Ananias and Sapphira? (They died.)
God knew that they were lying, and He punished them. When we do wrong things, we should remember that if we lie about it to our parents or our teachers, God still knows what we did wrong. We can’t lie to God because He sees and knows everything.
The great thing is that we don’t have to try to lie to God. He already knows everything, so we might as well be honest with Him. And when we’re honest with God and tell Him the things that we’ve done wrong, He’ll forgive us.
Prayer Activity: Confessing Our Sins – Have students spread out around the room to pray quietly. Ask them to think about wrong things they’ve done that they can remember. After a minute, direct them to ask God to forgive them for those wrong things. After another minute, tell students to listen to what God wants to say back to them in their heart.
Game: Give it Away - Divide students into two teams. Give one team a handful of pennies. Have them keep as much as they think they need, giving a rationale for each cent. Question their decision on what they need to keep their money for and what they don’t. You are trying to get them to see the difference between needs and wants.
Tell them to give away the rest, putting it into an offering plate. The leader takes some of that money, explaining that it’s for the church to pay its bills, and then gives the rest to the other team. Now, ask the second team to keep what they need from what they’ve been given by the first team. Again, they put their extra into the offering.
Then, the leader pulls out more money to give to the first team to reward them for their generosity. The more they gave away during their round, the more they receive as a reward from God. They are also given the offering from team two. This is how offering works and how God rewards us for it.
Play three rounds. At the beginning of each round, the money that the teams kept is “spent” on their necessities and recycles back into the leader’s supply.
Game: Sneaky Giving – Remind students that Ananias and Sapphira lied because they wanted to show off about how much money they were giving. But God doesn’t want us to show off. In fact, most of the time, God wants us to be quiet about how much money we’re giving.
Students sit or stand in a wide circle with their eyes closed. Choose one student to stand in the middle of the circle. They are the Giver. Hand them a random object to lay in front of one of the students in the circle. Their goal is to do so quietly so that the person doesn’t hear them.
If the person does hear them, they can reach out and try to tag the Giver. If they succeed in the tagging the Giver, the Giver loses that round. If the Giver succeeds, they win the round.
After the Giver has either laid their object down successfully or been tagged, the students open their eyes. The student with the object in front of them, or who tagged the Giver, becomes the next Giver.
Closing Prayer: Father God, we thank You for forgiving us whenever we’re honest with You and confess our sins. Help us always to be honest be with You. And help us to be generous with our money so that we can help other people who need it. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.
Recommended ExtraAnanias Lies to God – free coloring and activity pages
This lesson is included in my book, The Rock.
This lesson is included in my book, The Rock.