Title: The Armor of God
Scripture: Ephesians 6:10-17
Target Age Group: 3rd-5th grade
Main Point: God gives us armor to help us fight against Satan.
Supplies: Pictures of football player, soldier, firefighter, and scuba diver, belt, helmet, sword, large boots, breastplate, shield (or pictures of each), truth and lie cards, armor of God coloring pages
Hold up a picture of a football player and ask the kids if they know what he is. Next show a picture of a solider, then a firefighter, and lastly a scuba diver.
Ask: Does anyone notice what these pictures have in common? (Each person is wearing some sort of armor or protective gear.)
Say: In many jobs or activities it’s important to have the right gear to protect us. What would happen if a firefighter walked into a burning building without his gear? (He would get burned.) What would happen to a scuba diver without his gear? (He would drown.)
Ask: What other things can you think of that we need protection from? (Accept any answer.)
Ask: What about Satan? Do we need protection from him? (Yes!)
Say: Just like people do things to protect themselves from harm in their jobs, God has given us certain types of “gear” or tools to protect us from Satan! In the Bible Paul writes that this gear is like the armor of a solider. Today we’ll hear about how God gives us armor to help us fight against Satan.
Tell the Story
Say: Today’s lesson is from the book of Ephesians 6:10-17. Does anyone know who wrote this book? (Paul.) Paul wrote this letter to the church in Ephesus to remind them that God gives them everything they need to fight the battle against Satan.
Say: Paul wrote this letter when he was in prison. He was surrounded by Roman guards and probably noticed the armor they wore. Paul thought that the ways God protects us are a lot like armor. Listen to God’s word and hear about the different types of armor Paul mentions.
Read enthusiastically: “Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.
Say: We read that we’re basically at war against Satan. Do we fight this war on our own? (No way! God gives us what we need to fight.)
Read: Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
Say: God knows that Satan doesn’t want us to obey God. Satan will do anything in his power to try to keep us away from God. But God has given us armor to protect us from Satan and to stand up for our faith. The armor he gives us isn’t physical armor, but it is even more effective!
If you have actual armor to wear you may want to choose a volunteer student to put on each piece of armor as you talk about it. Otherwise, you can wear it yourself. If not, hold up the pictures as you talk about each piece of armor.
Say: The first piece of armor we read about is the belt of truth. (Pick up the belt/rope and tie it around your waist.) We find Truth in God alone, and when we wrap this Truth around us like a belt, it holds everything together.
Next put on the breastplate.
Say: Our second piece of armor is the breastplate of righteousness. Even though we all sin, when we put our trust in Christ, we are forgiven. Having righteousness means that we’re able to stand before God, because God sees the perfection of Jesus instead of our sins!
Put on the boots/shoes.
Say: Boots are worn to protect your feet and help a soldier to run bravely into battle. Paul said our shoes are like the gospel. It gives us courage to run and tell everyone about Jesus because we know the gospel message can change the hearts of our enemies and bring peace!
Hold up the shield.
Say: What is a shield used for? (To protect from the enemy’s arrows.) Paul said our shield is our faith in Christ. When Satan tries to fire arrows of lies and accusation at us, we can hold up our faith in Jesus and are protected.
Put on the helmet/hat.
Say: Why should we wear a helmet? (To protect our heads.) Sometimes Satan tries to discourage us by the evil things he says and does. God has given us the helmet of salvation to protect us from Satan’s lies. Our salvation keeps us from believing lies and giving up!
Hold up the sword.
Say: God has also given us a weapon with which to fight back. We have the sword of the Spirit, which we can think of as the Word of God. This sword is so powerful that nothing can beat it! It can defeat all our enemies so we should never be without it.
Main Point: God gives us armor to fight Satan.
Say: It’s important to know how to use the tools that God gives us to fight Satan, so we’re going to practice a bit right now.
Say: When Jesus was tempted in the desert by Satan, Satan was trying to tell him lies to get him to sin. In fact, he tried to use God’s Word against Jesus. But Jesus didn’t fall for it! He used God’s word to fight against Satan.
Say: God has given us armor to fight against Satan and he has promised to always be with us in this battle! Let’s spend a moment thanking him for this wonderful truth!
Pray: Dear God, thank you so much for our lesson today. Thank you for giving us armor to protect us from Satan. Help us to remember each day to trust in your provision and protection. We pray all this in Jesus’ name. Amen.
Learning Activity 1: Truth and Lies
Supplies: Truth and lie cards
The object of this activity is to help show the kids how they can use God’s Word to fight against sin.
Choose 10 kids from the class. Hand 5 of them one of the “lie” cards and 5 the “scripture truth” cards. Each student with truth cards should hold up their sign, and read it out loud to the class. Tell the class that they will need to match each lie card with the correct scripture truth card. One at a time have the kids with the “lie” cards hold them up and read them out loud. Have the rest of the class figure out which scripture corresponds to the lie.
Ask: Which one of the pieces of armor did we use in this game to fight Satan? (We used the Word of God as a sword!)
“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” (Philippians 4:13)
“Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight.” (Hebrews 4:13)
“Do not lie to each other.”(Colossians 3:9)
“Children obey your parents in everything.”(Colossians 3:20)
“Do not steal.” (Romans 13:9)
You will never make it. You are too weak.
Go ahead and sin. God doesn’t know.
It is ok to lie as long as it’s just a little lie.
Stealing is only wrong if it hurts someone.
You only need to obey your parents when they are looking.
Learning Activity 2: Armor of God Game Relay
Supplies: 2 of each: belt, helmet, sword, large boots, breastplate, and shield
Divide the class into two teams and have each team line up on one side of the room next to their pile of armor. The first kid on each team will put on the armor, run to the other side of the room and back, remove the armor and tag the next person in line who will then repeat the process.
Continue this way till each person on the team had run. The first team to have everyone through wins!
For even more ideas, we have a six part lesson series on the Armor of God.