God is Holy (Exodus 20) Lesson #14 in What is God Like?

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God is Holy (Exodus 20) Lesson #14 in What is God Like?
What is God like? In this lesson from Exodus 20, children will learn that God is Holy.

Who is God? What is God like? What does God do?

This is lesson 14 of 42 in our study on the Attributes of God called “Can you tell me what God is like?” Visit the series index to view all the lessons and get more ideas for using this curriculum in your children’s ministry. 

AGE GROUP: elementary (ages 6-11)
TIME REQUIRED: 45 minutes


  • Key Verse: “Be holy because I, the Lord your God, am holy.” Leviticus 19:2b
  • Teaching Passage: The 10 Commandments – Exodus 20
  • Supporting Texts: Leviticus 19:2, Psalm 77:13, Psalm 99:9, Psalm 99:5


Bibles, previous attribute of God posters, a large piece of paper with the words GOD IS  HOLY  written on it, key verse (Leviticus 19:2b) printed on a piece of paper, blank paper and markers or colored pencils for each child in the group



Ask one of the kids in the group to remind you what you’re learning this year. Remind them that each week we’ll be looking into the Bible to answer the question… “Can you tell me what God is like?” and will be learning one of the many truths about God that we see in His Word.

Ask if anyone can remember the truths we’ve learned so far. Have the kids stand up and say the attributes of God and do the motions.

  • God is Almighty=  He has absolute power or is all powerful
  • God is the Alpha and Omega= He is the beginning and the end, the first and the last
  • God is Awesome = He inspires awe and amazement
  • God is Compassionate = He shows a deep concern for His people & a desire to meet their needs
  • God is the Deliverer = He is the rescuer or savior
  • God is Exalted = He is noble, elevated and lifted up
  • God is Faithful = He is reliable, trustworthy, true to His Word & keeps His promises
  • God Forgives = He grants pardon and cancels the debt of sin
  • God is Glorious = He is full of glory (praise, honor & distinction)
  • God is Good = morally excellent, virtuous or righteous
  • God is Gracious = merciful, benevolent, kind & compassionate
  • God Guides His People= He leads, accompanies, assists and gives direction/ guidance
  • God Heals = to make healthy, whole & free from ailments


Start out by reading  this week’s memory verse (Leviticus 19:2) from the poster. Ask someone to define the word HOLY. Most kids in the group will think they know the word because we use it a lot, but they may not know the full definition of the word.

Tell the kids that you want to tell them a story from the Bible that helps to explain holy,and that even though its a familiar story that you want them to really pay attention and think about how this story shows that God is holy.

Read through Exodus 20 in context and discuss the commandments as you go through. Some points to include are:

  1. God had just led His people out of slavery in Egypt. As He led them, He was teaching them what it means to be His children ~ to follow Him, to trust Him, to rely on Him for all things, to be different from the world around them, etc.
  2. When they got to Mt Sinai, God had Moses come up on the mountain to give him instructions for the people.
  3. God started His instructions by reminding the people that He had led them out of slavery (Exodus 20:1). He reminded the people that they were His people and that He was their God. Then, He told them that because He had already rescued them that these laws were the way that they should live to show that they were His people.
  4. Commandments 1-4 talk about our relationship with God and boil down to the truth that we should love God.
  5. Commandments 5-10 are about our relationships with other people…. honor parents, don’t lie, don’t steal, don’t kill, don’t covet, don’t commit adultery (this can be explained as keep your marriage promises. Those who are old enough to understand will get it and those who aren’t will just learn the command).
  6. These commands weren’t about making them good enough for God to choose them or love them or rescue them or be their God~ He had already done all of those things. These commands are about being set apart from the people around them and showing them that they belong to God.


To help the kids remember this truth about God, take a few minutes to define the attribute.


EXPLAIN: Talk about how we saw God’s holiness in today’s story. Explain that God gave the 10 commandments not as a list of things to make them His people, but as a way to show they were different (or set apart) from the nations around them. God is set apart and He expects His people to be as well. The commandments also show us how easy it is for us to sin and break God’s law because we all do these things all the time…we lie, we disobey our parents, we worship ourselves instead of God, etc.

Since motions & actions help kids remember, choose an action for HOLY. A good motion might be to hold your left hand out palm up and use your right hand to wipe your left hand clean as a reminder that holy is sinlessness.


SAY: “This week our memory verse is Leviticus 19:2 which teaches us 2 very important things…. (1) God is Holy ~ which means He is sinless, perfect and set apart from us and (2) God expects His people to be holy.”

Hand out blank pieces of paper and give the following instructions. In the middle of the page draw a cross. On the left side of the cross, draw something to illustrate  the word “sin” which represents each of us. On the right side of the cross illustrate the word “holy.”

As you draw, notice that the cross (Jesus) is down the middle of the page to show that God is separated from sin and that the cross opened the way for sinful man to approach a holy God. After kids finish drawing, read the verse together a couple more times.


In our story this morning we saw God give His people instructions for living as His people; instructions for being set apart. We call those instructions the 10 commandments. But, why did God give us the law? Romand 3:20 and 7:7 tell us that God gave us the law so that we would know what sin is. The law helps us to see God’s holiness;His perfection and shows us that we are the complete opposite. Without the law we might think that we’re ok and that we don’t need to be saved, but the law acts like a mirror to show us our hearts and help us to see how truly sinful we all are. The Bible tells us in Romans 3:23 that none of us are perfect and that we have all broken God’s law. Jesus is the only one who lived a perfect, sinless life. Only Jesus lived a holy life. The law shows us that God is holy and we are not and points to our need of a Savior. When we put our faith in Jesus and trust Him, He will forgive us of our sin and save us from God’s judgement and make us like Him.


Have kids turn over the paper they were working with before and provide markers or colored pencils. Encourage them to write the word holy somewhere on the paper and then write or draw something to help them remember this attribute of God. As they’ve already done some drawing, you may want to encourage them to write and illustrate the memory verse.


Pray that the kids in the group would come to know God more and more each week through this study and that they would remember that all of us are sinners who need to be saved and that they would turn to this good God for salvation.

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