This is the 8th lesson in our series called “How to Win Against Sin.” It’s based on the Armor of God teaching found in Ephesians 6. Click here to see more Bible lessons in this unit.
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- Ephesians 6:18
- Philippians 4:6
- Romans 8:26-28
- Matthew 7:7
Teacher Preparation: Read the lesson beforehand and familiarize yourself with it. You do not have to read it word for word. Feel free to make it your own, just be sure to get the theme across. Pray for your class. Gather the following supplies:
- Poster and pieces.
- Battle Plan: Prayer activity page for each child.
- Download - prayer 2
- Download - prayer
- One sheet of computer paper per child.
- Crayons, scissors.
For further information on prayer, study the following passages. As you study these, allow the Holy Spirit to work these truths into your life so you can share them with the students.
- James 5:16
- Hebrews 13:3
- Matthew 6:9-15
- Luke 18:1-17
Theme: Now that we have put on all the armor of God, we have to learn how to fight this spiritual battle. We have to communicate with our the Leader of the battle, Jesus Christ. We communicate with God through prayer. Prayer helps us fight and win the spiritual battle.
Memory Verse: Ephesians 6:11 (ESV) “Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil.”
Game: For today’s game, play a good old-fashioned round of telephone. Have all the kids sit in a circle or straight line on the floor. Whisper a phrase into the first child’s ear, then have them whisper it to the next child, on and on until it reaches the last child. Have the last child say out loud what they heard. Tell them the original phrase, and share a laugh at how it changed. Use tricky phrases to throw the kids off. (Say things like, “Sandy sells sandy shells on the slushy slopes,” or, “a bare naked bear bearing boring berries on a board.”) After a few rounds, discuss how the message got muddled from one person to the next, but when we talk with God, he always understands exactly everything we say, even when we don’t say things out loud.
Lesson: Begin by praying with your class.
Over the past several weeks, we have discovered that we are at war with Satan. We have also learned that God has given us the tools we need to stand firm in this war. But what we have yet to learn is how exactly we are to fight. Raise your hand if you have ever played on a sports team. Now when you compete, does your coach let you go out and do whatever you want? No, your coach will give you instructions, a game plan. He will tell you what you need to do in order to win. Jesus Christ does the same this with us. Like any good commander will do for his troops, Christ has given us a battle plan. Can anybody guess what that is? Right, the way we can fight in this war against Satan is through prayer. So, what is prayer? Prayer is talking to God. What are some things to pray for? The Bible tells us that it’s okay to pray for everything. In Philippians 4:6 it says, “Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done.” How do we pray? We pray through the Holy Spirit. In Romans 8:26-27 the Bible says, “ And the Holy Spirit helps us in our weakness. For example, we don’t know what God wants us to pray for. But the Holy Spirit prays for us with groanings that cannot be expressed in words. And the Father who knows all hearts knows what the Spirit is saying, for the Spirit pleads for us believers in harmony with God’s own will.” This means that the Holy Spirit helps us to pray. If you have asked Jesus Christ to forgive you of your sins and live in your heart, then his Holy Spirit will guide your prayers. When should we pray? Ephesians 6:18 tells us to pray all the time. Does that seem like hard work to you? If we are praying all the time, we wouldn’t be able to go to school or eat or anything, would we? When we are told to pray all the time, this does not mean we stop doing things. It means we should always be thinking about God and talking to Him. We can pray for anything, at any time. Can you think of some things to pray for, and places to pray? Make a chart on the board with the students. Include places to pray and things to pray for. Make sure the list covers topics such as friends, family, the church, missionaries, countries in need, those who are sick, the lost, personal needs, etc. Include random places to pray, like the shower, the drive thru line at McDonald’s, in bed, on the bus. So now we know that we can pray at any time about anything. But how do we know that God hears us? Let’s do a sword drill to find out. Find Matthew 7:7. Go! Matthew 7:7 says, “Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you.” God hears your prayers and answers them. When we humbly pray to God, we can WIN AGAINST SIN! Let’s end by saying our memory verse with the motions. “Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil.” “Put on the whole armor” As you say this, pretend to get dressed. Put on your pants and a jacket. “of God” Sign God. (with right hand, thumb facing you, bring your flattened palm downward from your forehead to your chest.) “So that you may be able to stand against” Stand with your feet slightly more than shoulder width apart with your hands on your hips, like a super hero. “against the schemes” Rub your hands together like an evil villain. “Of the devil.” Sign devil. (Put your thumbs to your temples, and your forefingers and middle fingers straight in the air. Bend them twice, like air quoting. Repeat the entire verse with the children, leading them in doing the motions.
Poster Review the pieces from previous weeks and add the Pray! dialogue bubble to the poster.
Craft - Make prayer booklets. These booklets can help the children remember what to pray for and serve as a place to record their prayers. You may want to pre-make the booklets for younger children, and just have the kids decorate them.
- Pass out a sheet of computer paper to each child.
- Fold the paper short side to short side. Crease and leave folded.
- Fold the paper short side to short side again. Leave folded.
- Fold in have in the other direction. Crease.
- Unfold the paper twice, so it only has one fold in it.
- Cut along the folded side, up the crease, until you reach the center crease. Do not pass this line.
- Unfold the paper all the way. You now should have eight sections, with a cut in the center of the page.
- Fold in half, long side to long side. (Along the cut.)
- Fold the paper so the cut opens up and you see a plus sign when you look straight down at your paper.
- Smoosh it together, until you have flaps. Press your flaps together into a book.
- For more help, visit this website with pictures: http://library.thinkquest.org/J001156/makingbooks/minibook/index.htm
- Or look up “One page mini book.”
- Decorate the cover. On each page inside, write a different area to pray for. For example, on one page, write “Missionaries” to remind you to pray for missionaries. Other ideas are: family, the persecuted church, the government, church leadership, friends, those who are in prison or hurting, and lastly, yourself.
- Make as many of these books as you would like!
Pray with your class, then pass out the Prayer activity sheets. These can be done in class or sent home to reinforce the lesson. The page for the older children is an illustration of the five-finger prayer. First you pray to those close to you. (As the thumb is close to the body when you hold up your hands in prayer.) Second you pray for those who point to God, like teachers and missionaries. (As the first finger is the pointer finger.) Third you pray for authority, like the president. (As the middle finger is the tallest.) Fourth you pray for the oppress and weak, like orphans, widows, prisoners and the sick. (The ring finger is the weakest.) Fifth, you pray for yourself. (The pinky is last. You are last to remind yourself to consider others as more important than yourself.) The older children write who they will commit to pray for in each of these categories. The page for younger children is an accordion book that can be folded and kept in their pocket, so they have a close reminder of who/what to pray for. They can draw a picture in each box to remind them. After folding the book, they can add more prayers to the boxes made from the creases on the back of the page.