This lesson teaches children the difference Jesus can make in a person’s life when they put their faith and trust in Him as their Savior. The children will learn that the sins we think the Lord would never forgive, He does forgive. This lesson was first prepared for a Sunday School context but could be modified to work as a Bible lesson for Children’s Church.
Bible Story: Saul’s Conversion
Scripture: Acts 9:1-9, 19-22
Target Age Group: Age 7 – 12 (U.S. 1st – 6th Grade)
Learning Context: Sunday School
Target Time Frame: 20 minutes
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Supply List: pictures showing Saul encountering a bright light on the road to Damascus and/or pictures showing him talking in the synagogues or with people.
- After this lesson, the children will express the difference an encounter with Jesus can make in a person’s life.
- After this lesson, the children will express Jesus’ ability to change anyone no matter how evil they may seem to those around them.
- By pointing out ways that Jesus changed Saul the children will display the Lord’s power on a person’s life.
- By discussing the sins they feel are unforgivable the children come to understand that no sin is beyond the Lord’s forgiveness expect absolute rejection of Him.
Learning Activity #1
Active Listening: Divide the children into two groups and have the first group identify what they learn about Saul before He encounters Jesus on the road. The second group should identify what indicates the differences found in Saul after his encounter with Jesus.
Immediately following the reading of the passages, have a volunteer retell the story the best to their recollection. Ask someone from the first group to describe Saul before He meets Jesus, and then ask for volunteer from second group to describe Saul after meeting Jesus.
Learning Activity #2
Read the following statements to see whether the children agree or disagree. Ask for a reason they disagree.
- Saul lost his sight for 7 days and didn’t eat during that time. Disagree, 3 days
- The men with Saul heard the voice but didn’t see anything. Agree.
- Saul was a man murdering disciples of the Lord. Agree.
- Saul was afraid to tell others about Jesus. Disagree, spoke about Jesus in synagogues.
- Saul believed Jesus was a good man. Disagree, believed He was the Son of God.
- Saul didn’t know who the voice was when it asked why Saul was persecuting Him. Agree. Voice identified Himself as Jesus.
- The change in Saul’s attitude toward the Lord’s disciples amazed those listening. Agree.
Learning Activity #3
Discuss with the children about sin and ask them what sins they think Jesus could not forgive. Help them to realize that the only sin the Lord doesn’t forgive and that will keep them from heaven is the continual rejection of Jesus as their Savior.
Ask two volunteers to retell the story, having one describe the experience Saul had on the road to Damascus and the second to describe what he did in Damascus. Prompt them with questions like, “What happened next?”
Connection with the Gospel:
This story shows the difference Jesus makes in a person’s heart, thoughts, and actions. It is important for children to realize that Jesus wants us to see the truth about who He is and how He changes us from the inside to the outside, displayed in the actions and words a person does.
Connection with Life:
Discussion: Ask the children to share an incident in their lives about when they were tempted to do something mean to another person, but remembered what Jesus wanted them to do and chose to be kind instead. Challenge them to try to do something kind for someone who isn’t kind to them.