This free Bible lesson is part 9 of 10 in our Lord’s Prayer study. Click here to browse all the lessons and related ideas. Don’t miss our printable Lord’s Prayer coloring book, use it as an additional activity while teaching this unit.
Main idea: God gives us the strength and ability to run away from temptation. He saves us from Satan’s evil plans.
- Read Scripture references, Psalm 19:13, Isaiah 45:5-7, Job, specifically chapters 38-41.
- Gather: Bible; dry erase markers or chart paper and markers; cardboard tubes, cut in half lengthwise, then into smaller, C shaped pieces; a marble or small bouncy ball; picture of a yield sign;
- Write “and And don’t let us yield to temptation, but rescue us from the evil one.” (Matthew 6:13, NLT) on a regular sheet of paper. Make sure it takes up the whole page, so it can easily be read. Fold it up and place it in an envelope.
- Take time to meditate on this week’s Scripture and think about your own life. In what ways are you tempted to sin? How do you try to justify giving in to your temptations? As you read through Scripture, think about the ways you can stand strong through your temptations.
- Matthew 6:9-13
- Matthew 4:1-11
- James 1:12-14
- 1 Corinthians 10:12-13
Marble Rescue. The goal of this game is to have your class work together to move a marble from one point to another, across the room. Place a marble on a shelf or table. Put it low enough that the students can reach it, but high enough to make it challenging. Arrange an obstacle course that the children will have to go through with the marble. Cut cardboard tubes, such as those from toilet paper or paper towels, in half, creating two half pipes. Cut the half circles into smaller lengths. Give each child a length of cardboard tube. Give the older children shorter pieces and the younger children longer pieces. The class must move the marble from the high scary place and into a cup that is on the floor across the room. They may not touch the marble with any part of their hands. They can only transport the marble in their tubes. They may not pinch the ends of the tube to make a boat, this takes away from the tricky part! Each child must take at least three and no more than five steps with the marble before passing it into another child’s cardboard tube. Have the children move through a maze of chairs, step over a stack of books, etc. If the marble drops on the floor, they must start over. Everyone must get a turn with the marble once before anyone can get it for the second time. The game ends when the marble is safely in the cup without having touched the floor.
Open in prayer, then say,
We are almost done learning the whole Lord’s Prayer! Before we learn what today’s special message from God it, let’s first repeat all the parts of the Lord’s Prayer we have memorized so far. “Our Father in heaven, may your name be kept holy. May your Kingdom come soon. May your will be done on earth, as it is in heaven. Give us today the food we need, and forgive us our sins, as we have forgiven those who sin against us.” Great job memorizing, everyone! Now let’s open the special letter from God. (Either open and read the note yourself, or have a student do so.) It says, “And don’t let us yield to temptation, but rescue us from the evil one.” I hope you are all wearing your thinking caps and listening ears, because there are a lot of big, important things to learn in this petition, or request to God. I want to start by defining a word. (Hold up a picture of a yield sign.) Have any of you ever seen one of these? Who can tell me what it is? Correct, it is a yield sign. What does a yield sign tell drivers to do? (Accept an answer or two, and then explain.) When a driver comes to a yield sign, they have to slow down and let other drivers into the flow of traffic. This sign helps drivers be polite and make sure all drivers on the road can get to where they are going. Yielding in traffic can be a very good thing to do. What about in our walks with Jesus? Are we supposed to yield to temptation, and let it into our walk with Jesus? NO! In this part of the Lord’s prayer, we ask God to help us NOT yield to temptation. Temptation should never get a chance to drive on our roads.
Let’s think for a little bit about what temptation is. How many of you like to ride a bicycle? (Or scooter, or skateboard?) When I was a little kid, my parents had a very important rule when I rode my bike. It was that I could ride my bike only in my driveway. I was not allowed to go into the street, because that would not be safe. When I was older, I was allowed to ride further. But when I was little, my parents wanted to keep me safe by only letting me play in the driveway. Can you guess where I wanted to ride the most, when I was only allowed to ride in the driveway? You guessed it, I wanted to go ride up and down the street, like the big kids. Sometimes I would ride my bike right along the edge of the driveway, as close to the street as I could. You see, even though my parents had told me to stay in the driveway, I was tempted to ride in the street. I knew it was wrong, but I wanted to do it anyway. That is what temptation is. Temptation is thinking about doing the wrong thing. Temptation is not a sin. Everyone is tempted sometimes. But when we are tempted, we sometimes do decide to do the wrong thing. This is called sin. So that is why we ask God for us to not yield to temptation, because that means we are letting sin into our lives.
Like I said, temptation on its own is not a bad thing. Even Jesus was tempted. Listen this story from the Matthew, 4:1-11. “Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted there by the devil. For forty days and forty nights he fasted and became very hungry. During that time the devil came and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become loaves of bread.”
But Jesus told him, “No! The Scriptures say, ‘People do not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”
Then the devil took him to the holy city, Jerusalem, to the highest point of the Temple, and said, “If you are the Son of God, jump off! For the Scriptures say, ‘He will order his angels to protect you. And they will hold you up with their hands so you won’t even hurt your foot on a stone.’”
Jesus responded, “The Scriptures also say, ‘You must not test the Lord your God.’”
Next the devil took him to the peak of a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. “I will give it all to you,” he said, “if you will kneel down and worship me.”
“Get out of here, Satan,” Jesus told him. “For the Scriptures say, ‘You must worship the Lord your God and serve only him.’” Then the devil went away, and angels came and took care of Jesus.”
How was Jesus able to stand up to all of Satan’s tricks? Every time the devil tried to tempt Jesus, Jesus quoted the Bible to him. Jesus knew what the Bible said, and it helped him stay on the right path, the path of righteousness.
Let’s have a sword drill to learn another important thing about temptation. Take out all the bookmarks from your Bible and hold it above your head. When I say go, look up James 1:12-14. Go! (Either have a student read the verse or read it yourself.) “ God blesses those who patiently endure testing and temptation. Afterward they will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him. And remember, when you are being tempted, do not say, “God is tempting me.” God is never tempted to do wrong, and he never tempts anyone else. Temptation comes from our own desires, which entice us and drag us away.” This Bible verse tells us that God will never tempt us. He does not want us to do wrong. We, all on our own, are tempted by our own wants.
What are some temptations you may face? (Write these on the board. Prompt them as necessary with stories such as stealing a toy from a friend’s house, drawing on the walls and blaming your little brother, etc.)
That seems like a kind of depressing list, doesn’t it? There are a lot of ways we can be tempted to do the wrong thing. But there is good news! Whenever we are tempted to do wrong, God provides a way out. 1 Corinthians 10:12-13 says, “If you think you are standing strong, be careful not to fall. The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure.” This is a very good verse to remember! No matter how much we may want to yield to temptation, we know that God will never let us face more temptation than we can handle. God makes us strong enough to say NO to any wrong thing we may be tempted to do.
Wow, we sure did learn a lot today! Sometimes we are tempted to do wrong things. But God makes us strong enough to do the right thing. I have one more passage of scripture to read to you now. Matthew 7:13-14 says, “You can enter God’s Kingdom only through the narrow gate. The highway to hell is broad, and its gate is wide for the many who choose that way. But the gateway to life is very narrow and the road is difficult, and only a few ever find it.” Since we are Christians, we want to follow Jesus and spend all of forever with him. To do that, we have to avoid giving in to sin. We have to stay on the narrow road. We can do that by asking God to help us stay strong and avoid being tempted. We can read the Bible and learn what Jesus wants us to do to.
End in prayer.
Craft: Road map to righteousness. Pass out paper, pencils, and markers. Lay out road maps for the kids to use as examples. Have students draw out a map with many different twists and turns. Tell them to label different locations on the map. Some of these places should be righteous things, like helping to do dishes after dinner, and others should be temptations like the ones discussed earlier. At one end of the map, have them draw their home. Label this “you are here.” At the other end of the map, have kids write “narrow gate” and draw a gate. After the kids have designed and colored their map, have them use a highlighter to highlight a path that will lead them to the narrow gate. The line should only follow righteous paths, and avoid any places of temptation.