Friday, June 20, 2014

Easter Sunday School Lesson - The Empty Grave

Use this Easter Sunday School lesson to teach about the resurrection of Christ.

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

Lesson: (Note: Always give students the opportunity to answer the questions before you clarifying the teaching.)

(Have a student read John 19:38, or read it yourself.)

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.

(Have students take turns reading John 19:39-20:18, or read it yourself.)

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 will 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.

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.)

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.

Activity: Resurrection HuntBefore the session, find three rooms in your church 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 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 serving the snack:)

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. The Bible says John "saw and believed." That means he knew that Jesus was alive. God wants us to know that Jesus is alive too.

Mary Madalene, 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.

Find more Sunday School lesson ideas on our Free Children Sunday School Lesson Helps page.
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