Sunday School

We need Jesus lesson 4 - We need to be safe

Matthew 8:23-27

Simplified Sunday resource to be taught by parents at home during lockdown

Matthew is building a picture for us of Jesus – The king who rules and the saviour who cares. In just these few short verses we see Jesus the man (needing to sleep) and Jesus the commander of creation (calming the storm). I’m so glad we have a saviour who understands our fears, has experience of our storms, knows our weaknesses and the smallness of our faith and has the power to help. When I remember that this is his world and that he rules over it and he is with me, I can know peace in a storm.


Question to Ponder
How does remembering that Jesus, the ruler of creation, cares for you encourage your heart and your faith today?

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Sunday School

We need Jesus lesson 3 - We need to trust Jesus

Matthew 8:5-13

Simplified Sunday resource to be taught by parents at home during lockdown

There are many times when we feel that we are not in control. In those moments we find out where our faith truly lies. Do we depend on our own ability to fix things, or are we trusting someone else to be in charge. The powerful centurion had great faith – not in his own ability to control things, but in Jesus. The outsider, the enemy of Israel, acknowledged his unworthiness and dependence on Jesus. We need to do the same. This is great faith - not looking great but depending greatly on Jesus. Only when we understand the complete rule and power of Christ will we be able to fully depend on him.


Questions to Ponder
How does remembering that Jesus is in charge, even sickness, encourage your heart and your faith today?

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Sunday School

We need Jesus lesson 2 - We need to be clean

Matthew

Simplified Sunday resource to be taught by parents at home during lockdown

Jesus has just stepped down from teaching on the mountain (Matthew 5-7). But he is not a teacher out of touch with reality. A leper rushed up, knelt before him and made a desperate request: “if you are willing, you can make me clean.”

This man cannot help himself. He has an incurable disease that is slowly killing him. But there is more, he was religiously unclean. He could never walk into a synagogue. He could never eat with God’s people. He could never feel fully part of God’s people. He was truly alone. Only Jesus could help. The man makes no claim to deserve help. He doesn’t say “clean me, because I’m better than them” or, “clean me, because look how I’m kneeling and calling you Lord”. He just says “clean me, because you can if you are willing”. What an astounding picture of where our hearts need to be before Jesus.

Jesus responds “I am willing, be clean!” Here is hope for us all. Jesus is willing to clean us when we come to him, but that’s not all, he is also powerful enough to do it! At his word the man is immediately clean.

Jesus then sends the man away to obey God’s law. He must show himself to the priests, and make a sacrifice / gift because he is clean. In other words, respond rightly, live thankfully, obey joyfully! The man was desperate and hopeless but because Jesus was willing he became clean. The gift he gave in response was surely joyful.

Questions to Ponder

Do you kneel desperately before Jesus, dependent on him, bringing nothing, knowing no-one else can help you with your greatest need?

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Sunday School

We need Jesus lesson 1 - We need a rock to build our lives on

Matthew 7:24-29

Simplified Sunday resource to be taught by parents at home during lockdown

What do I want to be known as? A great parent? A great friend? A home schooling legend? A great Christian? Or a great depender on Jesus? Do I know that I bring nothing to the table, relying totally on God? Or do I think that he should be delighted to have me on “his team”?

The only foundation that will stand is Jesus Christ. I can celebrate my simple obedience to him. I can delight in listening to him, loving him, needing him and obeying him. This is safety; any other foundation ends in disaster.

Notes on the passages in the resource:

V24 – Hearing Jesus' teaching is not enough. Shock! Hearing his teaching and obeying him is like wisely building on solid foundations.

V25 – The solid foundation stands strong in all storms. When a person who has put Jesus‘ words into practice stands before Jesus on the day of judgement, they will stand secure. This doesn’t mean they have lived a life of 100% perfect obedience, but that they have obeyed Jesus’ call to repent and come to him for forgiveness when they fail. Whoever has built their life on Christ will be eternally safe with Christ.

V26 – Hearing Jesus' commands and ignoring them is like foolishly building on sand. Before the storm both houses look the same. The lives they represent may well appear the same. It is possible to build a very impressive mansion on sand, or to build a simple shack on rock. Which would you rather shelter in?

V27 – If there is no foundation then there will be a great crash. It may happen in this life, when a storm of intense hardship comes. It will certainly happen at the final judgement. There will be a day when any foundation other than Christ will collapse, leaving us exposed and in great danger.

V28-29 – Jesus' teaching is amazing. If we listen carefully, we will stand awestruck. His words have power. Let’s listen and obey.

Question to ponder: If you were honest with yourself, in the quietness of your heart, how would you finish this sentence, “If the worst happened to me, in those dreadful hours, I would be relying on….”

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Five selected studies from the Wonder of Easter family devotional book. These studies are based on the same passages that we used in our Wonder of Easter Sunday School materials.

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