These lessons are designed to point children to the fullness of God’s character and lead them to see Him as the One who deserves all praise and worship. These lessons work well in Sunday School or mid-week Bible study groups or even family devotion times.
“Praise God Through the Psalm” – Psalm 5
Lesson focus: Through the book of Psalms and the worship of the people of Israel, we get a glimpse into the character of God and how we should rightly respond to Him in worship. In Psalm 5 we see God as one who hears His people and protects His people. Through this study, kids will talk about God they can talk to God with confidence that He hears them. Kids. will also focus in on the truth that when God protects His people, the greatest danger He protects them from is His own wrath and that this protection comes in the form of Jesus dying on the cross in our place.
Passage: Psalm 5
Target Audience: Kindergarten-4th Grade (can be adapted for older or younger children)
Teaching Time: 45 minutes – 1 hour
Materials Needed: a set of Bible book cards, strips of paper, blank paper, markers/ pencils
Optional Materials: if you want to be able to send the kids home with something each week, you can print the text of the Psalm on one side of a piece of paper and on the back print “I should praise God because He is ____________” (leave the rest of the page blank for drawing.
Early Arriver/ Opening 10 minutes- have a few board games out and play with kids as they arrive. Don’t underestimate the conversations that happen while playing “Jenga” or “Uno” with a group of kids.
Intro. – – “Telephone”– – Play a round of Bible verse “telephone”. Before playing, choose a verse from the Psalm that you want the kids to really focus on (verse 4 might be a good choice). Have the group sit in a circle and whisper all or part of the verse in the first child’s ear who will then whisper it in the next child’s ear, etc. When the verse gets back to you, repeat what you heard from the last child. Assuming that it’s all messed up, comment that we can’t always hear and understand, but that this morning, we’re going to talk about someone who always hears and always understands and always responds, even when we don’t know its happening. If the verse happens to come back correctly, congratulate them on listening well, and tell them that this morning you’re going to hear about someone who always hears.
Read the Text. . .Psalm 5 ….
- Have one of the kids in the group read Psalm 5, or have the whole group read it from their handout. As you go through the Psalm, have kids listen for 2 truths about God in this Psalm…. (1) God hears His people and (2) God protects His people. Have them make a hand motion for each of the truths they hear about who God is and what He is like.
- Discuss the Passage– After reading through the passage, chat with the kids in the group about what they heard in these verses about who God is and what He does. Talk about how verses 1-3 talk about God listening to His people, specifically David asking God to listen to Him. Ask the kids how we talk to God and what David was talking about when He said that he lays his requests before God. Talk briefly about how prayer is our way to talk to God and remind kids that god always hears us when we pray. Read Philippians 4:6 as a reminder that we should pray about all things. If you think you have time, tell the kids that you want to tell them a story about a time that the Bible tells us about when God says that He heard His people and responded to their need. Read Exodus 2:23-25. Remind the kids that God’s people had been in Egypt since the time of Joseph when God had used Joseph to rescue His people from starvation, but that now there were so many of them that the kings of Egypt had made them into slaves and as slaves they cried out to God and He heard them and responded. Then, tell the story (with the help of the kids) of God sending Moses to rescue the people, the plagues, the exodus, etc.
- Cross Connection– – Re-read verses 4-10. Talk about how these verses describe people. Ask the kids who “the wicked” are. Point them to Romans 3:23 as a reminder that “the wicked” is all people because we are all sinners. But, as verse 7 points out, because of God’s great mercy His people (David in this case) are able to enter His house (or His presence). Point kids to Romans 5:8 which reminds us that while we were sinners, Christ died for us. Talk about how this verse is God’s mercy, and how because of Jesus those who have repented and believed in Jesus can be close to God again. Remind them that because of sin we are all separated from God and that the only way we can be reunited with God is through Jesus.
Make a “God Always Hears Headband”– Read through Psalm 5:1-3 again and voice a prayer of praise to God for hearing when His people call on Him. Explain that you’re going to make something to help you remember that God hears His people. Give each child a piece of paper and have them fold it in half (like a card). Have them draw a giant ear on one 1/2 of the page. (an ear is basically a “C” with a smaller “c” inside of it). The ear should fill most of the 1/2 page. Then, with your help and with the page still folded, they should cut out the ear so that they now have 2 ears. Then, give each child enough strips of paper (about 2 1/2 – 3 inches wide) to fit around their head. Help them tape the paper strips together to make one long strip and help them tape or glue the ‘ears’ on the strips so that they fit above their ears. Then, on the paper strip they should either write out the words to Psalm 5:1 or write ‘God hears me when I pray.” Finally, help them fit the headbands on their heads and tape them in place.
Worship Time- After discussing the passage, distribute the paper and markers or pages printed with the text for the week. Explain that each week you want them to do three things in response to the Psalm…
- write a verse from the passage that they want to remember
- write a reason to praise God that they see in the Psalm
- draw of something from the passage that they think is important.
Give kids time to work on their pages and then have them share what they have drawn or written with the rest of the group.
Prayer- Ask the kids in the group to share the truths that they see about God from this passage…the things they drew on their praise shields, the things they drew or wrote on their pages, etc.
Sing “Praise Him Praise Him all you little children…God is…” including the truths that they saw in Psalm 5. Close the prayer time by praising God for the truths that you see about Him in this Psalm and praying for the kids in the group that they would really get to know the character of God through this study this year.
Extra Time- If you have any extra time at the end, play Get in Order…. For this game you’ll need a set of book of the Bible cards. Randomly hand out the cards, one to each kid in the group and on the count of 3, they should try to get their cards in order… (it could be…. Exodus- Ruth- Proverbs- Malachi- Acts- 2 Timothy). Mix the cards up, hand out new cards and play again as long as time permits.
** Bible book cards can be made by printing the books of the Bible individually on index cards, or you can get creative and design something on the computer.