Use this children’s Sunday School lesson to teach kids that bad things don’t always happen as a punishment from God and that we need to be faithful to God even when others tell us we shouldn’t or aren’t allowed to.
Needed: Bibles, a volunteer to play blind man (You can do this yourself if you want.), blindfolds, writing or drawing paper, pencils or pens and crayons or colored pencils
Intro Game: Blindfold Challenge
Have the students pair up in a safe area. One of the students will put on a blindfold. The other will give them verbal directions of where to go. When I used this game, I had the children lead each other to another room in the church. You could also take the kids outside to walk a path around your property or set up a course for them to follow in your classroom.
Once they get to the ending location, have them switch. The one giving directions will now take their blindfolded partner to a third location or back to the classroom via a different route.
Ask children, Was it difficult to move when you were pretending you were blind?
Were you afraid you might trip into something or bump into something?
If you were blind, would you want Jesus to heal you?
Read John 9 or summarize it with the following script.
Blind Man: Hi, everyone! I want to tell you about the time I met Jesus. I was a blind man. I had always been blind, even when I was first born. One day, Jesus and His disciples were walking along, and they saw me.
Jesus’ disciples asked Him what bad thing I had done or what bad thing my parents had done for God to make me blind like that. But Jesus said I wasn’t blind because God was punishing me. I was blind because God wanted to do a miracle for me! Then, Jesus spit on the dirt, made some mud, and put the mud on my eyes. “Go wash off,” He told me, and when I washed the mud off, I could see! I wasn’t blind anymore.
I went home, and all of my neighbors were amazed that I could see. I told them that Jesus did it, and then, they took me to the Pharisees so that I could tell them too. But the Pharisees said Jesus was bad because He had healed me on the Sabbath, and we’re not supposed to work on the Sabbath. We’re only supposed to go to church and rest on the Sabbath. They said I was lying because they didn’t think Jesus was a good man and that He could heal me as He did.
The Pharisees made my parents come to talk to them, but my parents didn’t know what to say. They didn’t want to tell the Pharisees that Jesus healed me because the Pharisees said they would kick anyone out of the church if they believed in Jesus.
I told the Pharisees again that Jesus must be a good man that came from God for God to give Him the power to heal me, but they still didn’t believe me and kicked me out of the church.
A little while later, Jesus came and found me again. He asked me if I believed in Him. I said that I did and then, I bowed down and worshipped Him. Then, He said that my eyes had been blind, but that it was the Pharisees who couldn’t see the truth because they were the ones who wouldn’t believe in Him like God wanted them to.
Do you all believe in Jesus?
That’s good. Because Jesus said that if we believe in Him, then God forgives us for all the wrong things we’ve done.
(Have students thank the blind man for coming.)
How long had the man been blind? (His whole life, since he was born.)
Was the man blind because he had something wrong? Did his parents do something wrong? Did God make the man blind as a punishment? (No.)
What did the Pharisees do to the man because He believed in Jesus? (They kicked him out of the church.)
It was against the law back then to believe in Jesus, and in some countries, it’s still against the law to believe in Jesus. People get put in jail and even killed if they believe in Jesus. But the man was brave to believe in Jesus anyway, even if he did get in trouble and get kicked out of the church because of it.
What did Jesus say we had to do for God to forgive us for our sins? (We have to believe in Jesus.)
Game: Pass it On
Have students sit in a line or a circle, holding hands with the person next to them.
Have them all close their eyes. The leader should be on the end with their own eyes open. The leader will squeeze the hand of the person next to them. That person will open their eyes and then squeeze the hand of the third person.
So, when a person feels their hand being squeezed, they should open their eyes and then, pass the squeeze on. The goal of the game is for everyone to open their eyes, going down the line or around the circle, as fast as possible. Play a couple of times to get your speed up. Feel free to rotate who starts the line or circle.
Tell students, When we believe in Jesus, it’s like our eyes are being opened, and we can see the truth. And if we believe in Jesus and can see the truth, then it’s our job to tell other people about Jesus so that they can believe in Jesus and see the truth too, just like how we passed our hand-squeeze down the line today.
Craft: The Persecuted Church
Look up a current news story about where Christians are being persecuted. Show the location on a map and summarize the situation for the children and explain why a certain government doesn’t want the people to believe in God. Then, have students write a prayer for their fellow Christians in that situation, or draw a picture illustrating God’s protection around those persecuted Christians.
Jesus, we thank You for helping us to see clearly who You are. We pray that You’ll keep us faithful to You even when other people don’t believe in You or say that we’re not allowed to believe in You. We pray that You’ll be with all the people who are being persecuted right now because they believe in You. Amen.
You can also find this lesson for Kindle or in print in my book, The Miracles of Jesus.