Last week we learned that Jesus is the perfect example of obedience to God and love for
others. This week we will learn that Jesus chose to come and die for us because he loved us. He had the same free will you and I do, and he could have said no. It was never even a question for Him. Jesus loves us, and He was willing to do anything to save us. But that doesn’t mean it was easy for Him. Jesus went to a garden to pray right before His betrayal. The way Jesus prayed that night shows us how fearful Jesus was, right as everything was about to happen.
Parent’s read these verses and watch the videos with your kids and discuss the questions. Or have the kids act out the stories and talk about how they would feel if they were in those situations.
READ MARK 14:32-42 video: Garden of Gethsemane
Jesus was overwhelmed with emotion. He knew what he had to do to save us, and he knew how brutal it would be. His disciples had no clue what he was about to face, and they could not imagine how he felt. Even as he cried and prayed his heart out, they were sleeping, completely unaware of what was about to go down.
If there was another way to save us, Jesus would gladly have taken it. He knew our only hope meant suffering, and he was willing to suffer.
Jesus knows how we feel when we are scared, overwhelmed, and any other emotion that we feel. He is fully God but fully human too. Just like us, He laughed and had happy times, but also at times He was sad and cried. We can trust Him with all of our feelings.
What did Jesus pray for in the garden?
The apostles were supposed to be praying for Jesus, what did they do instead?
READ LUKE 22:63-65
Jesus was beaten with fists and with a whip. He had His clothes stripped away. He had a crown of thorns placed on His head. All night and all day, the men who guarded Jesus mocked Him and laughed at Him. They made fun of him for saying He was the King of the Jews and the Messiah. Jesus was humiliated and shamed publicly, but the greatest pain He felt didn’t come from a whip or an unbelieving guard. It came from one of his own friends.
What were some of the humiliating things that happened to Jesus?
READ MATTHEW 26:69-75 God's Story: Peter denies Jesus
Before the Garden, before Jesus’ arrest, Peter vowed that he would never leave Jesus’ side. But when Jesus was arrested, Peter feared for his life. He denied Jesus three times, just as Jesus predicted. He turned His back on Jesus, even as Jesus was preparing to die for Him.
Why do you think that Peter denied knowing Jesus?
What animal did he hear?
How did Peter feel after he realized that he had denied Jesus?
Have you ever been embarrassed by someone?
How did you act?
Has someone ever acted embarrassed because of you?
How did you feel?
Jesus was willing to be beaten, mocked, ridiculed, and made fun of for our sake. He never wavered, never ran and hid, never backed down. He did what was necessary because He loves us.
How sad that so many believers are so ashamed of the Savior who was unashamed of them. So many of us hide our faith. We live just as sinfully as our friends when we’re not at church. We never share what we believe with anyone.
Jesus was unashamed of us. We should be unashamed of him. We should be
Christians 24/7. We need to be willing to live our faith every day, not just on Sunday.
It’s not easy to be a Christian in a non-Christian world. We all want to fit in. We don’t want our friends to laugh at us or tease us about anything, much less our faith. It’s so much easier to stay silent, to follow the crowd, and blend in.
We weren’t saved so we would blend in. We were saved so we could carry the
message of Easter to the world. Jesus came to save everyone! He wants them to know he can save them from their sins. How can Jesus save them if we’re afraid to live for Jesus?
This week, be willing to stand out. Be willing to be different. If someone asks you about your faith, don’t be afraid to share it with them. Tell them you love Jesus! Jesus was unashamed for you. Do not be ashamed to say you love him!
CLOSE WITH A SIMPLE PRAYER:
Give us the courage to proclaim our faith and to show others our love for you. Please help us not to be afraid.
In Jesus’ name,
A few fun activities:
Play a game where each person does an impression of a cow, a pig, and a rooster. Or play charades and act out one of these animals.
Use large paper to draw scenes from today’s story.
EXTRAS...You might need some fresh ideas of things to do with your kids in the days to come. Check out the fun links below!