Use this children’s Sunday School lesson to teach kids the importance of obeying Jesus.
Needed: Bibles, a volunteer to play Peter (You can do this yourself if you want.), playing cards of UNO cards or Go Fish! cards
Read Matthew 17:1-9 or summarize it with the following script.
Peter: Hi, friends! I’m Peter. I was one of Jesus’ disciples, and I want to tell you about a very strange time we had with Jesus. You see, one day, Jesus took James, John, and I up a high mountain. It was just the four of us.
And when we got to the top of the mountain, Jesus changed right before our eyes. His face started shining like the sun, and His clothes became bright white.
And then, Moses and the prophet Elijah were there with Jesus, talking to Him about how He was going to die on the cross soon.
I told them I would build them all churches up there, but that was a silly idea.
Then, a cloud came and covered the top of the mountain where we were. We were in the cloud, and we heard God’s voice. He said, “Jesus is My Son. I love Him, and I am happy with Him. Do what He says!” James, John, and I were so scared that we bowed down to the ground and wouldn’t look up.
Then, Jesus came and touched us. He said, “Get up. Don’t be afraid.” We looked up, and it was all over. The cloud was gone, Moses and Elijah had gone back up to Heaven, and Jesus looked like His normal self again.
That was a strange day, but it definitely taught us a lot about how great Jesus really is.
Well, thanks for letting me come talk to you. Goodbye!
(Have students thank Peter for coming.)
Who came down from Heaven to visit Jesus? (Moses and Elijah.)
Who was Moses in the Bible? (Moses led the Israelites out of slavery in Egypt and gave the Israelites the Ten Commandments and the rest of God’s rules. He even wrote the first five books of the Bible.)
Who was Elijah in the Bible? (Elijah was the first prophet for God. When Israel started worshipping other gods, he preached and reminded the Israelites and their bad kings to worship God and to do the right things that God wanted them to do.)
Do you remember what God called Jesus when God was talking in the cloud? (God called Jesus His Son.)
So, Moses and Elijah and Jesus were all great leaders who served God, but Jesus was the most important out of all of them because He was God’s Son. Moses and Elijah were regular humans, but Jesus was God’s very own Son, and that made Jesus very special.
Does anyone remember what God told the disciples to do? (God told the disciples to listen to Jesus and to do what Jesus told them.)
And that’s what God wants us to do too. He wants us to listen to Jesus and to what He tells us. If we believe in Jesus and listen to Him, then God will be happy with us, just like He was happy with Jesus.
So, remember, Jesus is the most important person because He’s God’s very own Son, and God wants us to listen to Him and do everything that He tells us.
Game: Jesus Says
In this game of Simon Says, students follow your commands and motion when you say, “Jesus says” first. If you don’t say, “Jesus says” before the command, and they do it anyway, they’re out. If they follow a motion that doesn’t match the “Jesus says” verbal command, they’re out.
The winner is the last one in the game. They become the leader for the next round.
Remind students that God wants us to listen to Jesus and do what He says.
Game: Sword Drill
Remind students that if we want to listen to what Jesus says, we have to know what He said, and we can only know what He said if we read and learn the Bible.
Give each student a Bible. Then, call out the name of one of the books of the Bible. The student who finds that book first wins. To make it a little more difficult, you can call out the chapter and verse of a book or the name of a Biblical person or event.
Remind students how important it is to read and study the Bible on their own so that they can know it well.
Game: Fast Reflexes
Lay out a deck of game cards on a table, face up. The cards could be regular playing cards, UNO cards, Go Fish! cards, etc.
Students gather around the table. You’ll call out a type of card (a number, color, shape, etc.). The last student to reach out and touch that type of card is out.
The last student in the game wins and becomes the caller for the next round.
Remind students that we can’t wait to follow Jesus. We can’t make excuses. We have to obey Him immediately, just like they need to be quick to play this game.
Father God, we thank You for sending Your Son, Jesus, to teach us. Help us to listen to and obey Him as You want us to. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.
You can also find this lesson for Kindle or in print in my book, The Miracles of Jesus.