This world is a confusing place, especially for children. This simple children’s sermon will teach them that Jesus Christ is the only way to God, his truth, and the life God created them to enjoy.
Leader Preparation: It is good to get the full context of the reading. Reading John 13:31-38 would be very beneficial, then read John 14:1-12 a few times to become comfortable with the text.
This passage is a great way to describe to children–or anyone–that there is only one way to get to God and heaven, and it is through Jesus. While teaching the lesson, try to refer back to the text as often as possible. It can be very beneficial for those listening to see the importance of Scripture.
When reading the “Lost” and “Found” sections (see below), you may want to use your own story, or tell the children to listen about someone’s story about being lost. You may not want to speak in a way to make the audience think that the story is about you. That would hinder the purpose of the lesson.
Children’s Sermon Title: Jesus is the Way
Bible Passage: John 14:1-12
Target Age Group: Elementary Aged Children
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- Have all the children close their eyes.
- While the eyes are closed take an object and hide it. Make sure it’s hidden really good.
- Have the children open their eyes and tell them about the object that you have hidden.
- Explain to the children that you are going to give them directions to find the object. However, you are going to give the children the wrong directions. That’s right, you are going to lead them away from the object.
- After a minute or two, have the children come back and listen for the next instructions–hopefully they didn’t find the object the first time. Ask the group the first two sets of “Opening Questions.” Explain to them that there is only one true way to find the object. There are not multiple ways.
- Ask for a volunteer–or you can have all of them do it, but it may cause chaos–and tell the volunteer exactly where the object is. Make it very easy. Then, gather the group, and ask the remainder of “Opening Questions” (3 and 4).
- Has someone ever given you bad directions? What happened?
- Has someone ever told you a lie? Why is telling the truth so important?
- Was it easier to find the _______ (object) when I told you the truth?
- How many ways are there to find the _______ (object)?
Did you know that Jesus said there is only one way to receive eternal life? It is only through him. Let us look at John chapter 14 to see what Jesus says…
1“Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God;believe also in me. 2 In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. 4 And you know the way to where I am going.” 5 Thomas said to him, “Lord, we do not know where you are going. How can we know the way?” 6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. 7 If you had known me, you would have known my Father also. From now on you do know him and have seen him.”8 Philip said to him, “Lord, show us the Father, and it is enough for us.” 9 Jesus said to him,“Have I been with you so long, and you still do not know me, Philip? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? 10 Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on my own authority, but the Father who dwells in me does his works. 11 Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me, or else believe on account of the works themselves.
12 “Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do, because I am going to the Father. 13 Whatever you ask in my name, this I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 If you ask me anything in my name, I will do it.
I remember when I was young, I got lost in a Walmart. Though, I didn’t immediately know I was lost. It took me a little while to realize that I didn’t know where my parents were. The truth was, I was lost the whole time but I didn’t know it!
When I figured out I was lost, I became scared, and wanted to know the correct path–the way–to find my mother and father. I became overjoyed and relieved when I found my parents.
Finding Life in the Way
Jesus said, “Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me” (14:1). Notice how Jesus does not want us to be “troubled.” How do we become content or not troubled? Answer: Believe in God; believe in Jesus. It is incredible that in the passage before this reading (John 13:36-38), Jesus foretells Peter’s (a disciple) denial of him. Then, Jesus follows up this heavy situation by explaining to his disciples not to be troubled.
Jesus is the true direction; he is the correct path to take; he offers us life. “Jesus said to [Thomas], ‘I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (14:6). Jesus told Thomas, another disciple, this to demonstrate that it is impossible to be ‘found’ unless you go through Jesus. The only way to get to God is through His son, Jesus.
We become ‘found’ when we trust our lives to Him. If we trust in Jesus, then we can have eternal life. In fact, He calls himself “living water” (John 4:10). If one takes the ‘living water,’ then they can have “eternal life” (John 4:15).
I had said that I became “overjoyed and relieved when I found my parents,” but the truth is, they found me. Jesus had said, “No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him,” (John 6:44), and “…no one can come to me unless it is granted him by the father” (John 6:65).
My parents could have left me at Walmart, but they didn’t. My parents loved me, and showed themselves to me. Likewise, God loves us; Christ loves us, and they are one in the same (John 14:7). God loved us so much that he sent his Son down to earth. God sent Jesus to save and find us. I was in a scary situation when I was lost, but then I became found.
- What does it mean to be “lost?”
- What is sin?
- Does sin cause us to be lost from God?
- What does Jesus do to save us from sin?