Jesus Feeds The Five Thousand (Children’s Church Lesson) from John 6:1-14

sunday-school-lesson1.jpgThis Sunday I continued my series of New Testament stories in children’s church. This Bible lesson plan for children can be used in Sunday school or children’s church. You can download this lesson plan as a Word document from the following link: Children’s Bible Lesson Plan: Jesus Feeds The Five Thousand from John 6:1-14.

You can also download my other Children’s Church Lesson Plans.

Children’s Church Bible Lesson: Jesus Feeds The Five Thousand

Text: John 26:1-14
(you can also find this story in Matthew 14:13-21; Mark 6:32-44; Luke 9:10-17)

Learning Objectives: After this lesson, children will demonstrate knowledge of the key people and events in this passage … by retelling the story back to the teacher at the end of the session. Key points include:

  1. Situation: Large crowd follows Jesus up the mountain.
  2. Problem: No food for all the people.
  3. Complication: Jesus tells his disciples to feed the crowd.
  4. Complication: A young boy shares his lunch – but it’s not enough
  5. Resolution: Jesus performs a miracle by multiplying a small boys gift.

Target Age: Kindergarten – 5th

Items Needed:

  • Marked Bible for this passage. Prepare the copy in advance by highlighting the significant points to emphasize. Underlining words or ideas that will need additional explanation. I typically make small notes in the margin.
  • Snack. If you have snack in your children’s church this would be a perfect way to integrate the snack and the lesson. You could keep it basic with goldfish or go for something bigger with real bread and cooked fish.

Explanation: This story has several great themes to bring out for the children. Sometimes it has been reduced to a story about sharing, but the biblical writer really wants us to see that Jesus can provide. It’s about the power of Jesus. There is a lesson in the fact that God chose to use the young boy’s gift, just don’t let that overshadow the main point about the divinity of Christ.

There is also the theme of compassion in this text. When Mark tells this story in Mark 6:34-44, he points out that the miracle was motivated by Jesus’ compassion for the crowd and a concern that they might faint without food returning home. There is certainly a lesson here about caring for the hungry.

This miracle is also a set-up for an upcoming lesson on Jesus as the “bread of life” in John 6:25-40. You might hint to the kids that Jesus is going to give the people something better than food next week.

Jesus Feeds Five Thousand, John 6:1-14
Sunday School Lesson For Children

One Page Teaching Plan

Hook

Take out your snack and begin to eat it in front of the class. Wait for someone to ask you to share. Assure them you will share after the lesson, but ask them to think about how they would feel it there wasn’t enough food for everyone. Say, “In today’s story, we are going to learn about a time when Jesus make food for 5,000 families out of one small snack.”

Book

Active Listening: Ask the children to listen carefully for the details of the story, so that they can re-tell it to you afterward.

Read (and summarize) John 6:1-14. Be sure to engage the children with good story telling. Key points include:

  1. Situation: Large crowd follows Jesus up the mountain.
  2. Problem: No food for all the people and they are getting really weak.
  3. Complication: Jesus tells his disciples to feed the crowd.
  4. Complication: A young boy shares his lunch – but it’s not enough
  5. Resolution: Jesus performs a miracle by multiplying a small boys gift.

Review: Read the following statements. Have the children stand up if this was something that happened in this story. If it didn’t happen in this story they should sit with arms crossed – even if they are true statements taught in other parts of the Bible the children should remain seated.

  • Jesus turned regular water into wine to save a wedding party.
  • Jesus told his disciples to feed the 5,000 families.
  • A young boy offered to share his five loaves of bread and two fish.
  • Satan tried to get Jesus to turn stones into bread.
  • God sent down bread falling from the sky to feed the Israelites.
  • Jesus told the disciples to pick up all the leftover bread.

To use this lesson for Children’s Sunday School, you will want to add additional learning activities here like a craft to complement the Bible lesson.

Look/Took:

Talk About It: Ask the children to discuss the following questions to better understand the story.

  • Why do you think Jesus wanted to feed the 5,000 families?
  • What do you think the little boy was feeling when he saw Jesus use his gift for the miracle?
  • What does this story tell you about whom Jesus really was?

Test: Ask several volunteers to come up to the front to re-tell the story to the class. If they need help prompt them with questions like “what happened next.”


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