This Bible lesson plan about freedom in Christ follows our new hassle-free format. The basic version makes it easy to teach with very little preparation or outside materials. We’ve also suggested more activities so you can expand the lesson to best fit your ministry setting.
Lesson Title: The Tower of Babel
Bible Reference: Genesis 11:1-9
Printer Friendly: [print_link] this lesson.
Target Age Group: Age 4 – 12
Learning Context: Sunday School or Kids Church
Target Time Frame: 30 minutes
Memory Verse: So the LORD dispersed them from there over the face of all the earth, and they left off building the city. (Genesis 11:8 ESV)
Gospel Connection: The good news about Jesus Christ is God’s answer to human pride. We realize that salvation can be received only as a gift and all the glory belongs to God alone.
Learning Aim: After this lesson, children will understand the difference between seeking God’s glory and showing-off to build their own reputation. Look for the Learning Outcome Test section in our Basic Teaching Plan below.
Target Age: Our no-hassle lesson plans are broadly graded and easy to adapt for a variety of children’s ministry settings. Look for specific adaptations within the Basic Teaching Plan below.
Basic Supply List:
- Download this PDF document with suggested visuals
- A marker board or sheets of paper to display the Discovery Questions listed below.
- A marker board or poster board to display the memory verse.
- The optional activities at the end of this lesson may require additional supplies. Carefully read the directions while preparing your lesson.
Other Notes: In the teaching plan below the words in italics should be read aloud. The regular text is simply directions for the teacher.
> > > > > Basic Teaching Plan < < < < <
Lesson Introduction: Display a painting or other work of art, preferably something that was given to you as a gift. Take a few moments to talk about the beauty of the item and the great skill that it would take to make something so valuable.
Say, “Imagine if I started acting like this gift was something that I had created all by myself. Imagine I had come to church today bragging about how wonderful and creative I was when I made this object. That would be like stealing another person’s reputation. It would get even worse when the artist discovered I was pretending like the gift they made was something I did on my own. How do you think that artist might feel?” Allow a moment for the children to react, then continue. Say, “Today we’re going to learn about a time when humans started taking credit for the gifts God had given them. In fact, they wanted to make themselves famous and even did the exact opposite of what God commanded them to do. In all this we’re going to learn the difference between glorifying God and showing-off to build our own reputation.”
Active Listening: As you prepare to read the Bible story, ask the children to listen for the following clues. Say, “Each of these items will play a part in our story and I want you to listen very carefully for why they are important.” We’ve included a printable picture for each in the visual materials download above. Display these items on the wall before you read.
- Bricks made from mud
- Brain power
- Muscle power
- Word power (language)
Bible Story: Read the story from Genesis 11:1-9, adding detail and emphasis so the children understand the themes of the passage. Be sure to highlight main idea of people using God’s gifts to rebel and bring glory to themselves. Alternatively, you could read this story from the Jesus Storybook Bible.
Review the Active Listening Clues: Ask volunteers to come up and explain how each of the picture clues fit into the story. For each one ask the children where that item first came from. Lead them to conclude that each of those items were gifts that God gave the people. Say: “All of these things came from God and were given to the people so they could show God’s glory. Instead, the people used this stuff to show-off themselves and try to become important.”
Discovery Questions: The following questions can help kids understand if they are using their abilities to glorify God. Using a marker board (or sheets of paper) display the different parts of each question in random order. Call on volunteers to try to put the questions together. When each match is made ask the children to suggest examples that go along with the question.
- Does this action disobey something ~~ the Bible has said you should do?
- Does this activity draw attention to ~~ God or only to yourself?
- How does this action make ~~ other people feel?
Learning Outcome Test: Ask the children to respond to the following set of statements. If the activity is about seeking God’s glory they should stand with both hands raised toward Heaven, if the activity describes is mostly about seeking their own popularity (aka showing-off) they should cross their arms and remain seated. After each response, briefly point them back to the heart motives behind each action.
- Talking loudly about your good grades so that everyone knows that you’re smart. (showing-off)
- Using your intelligence to helping a friend with their math homework. (glorifying God)
- Doing your best to help your soccer team win. (glorifying God)
- Starting a new business so you can get rich and boss people around. (showing-off)
- Starting a new business so you can give people jobs. (glorifying God)
Gospel Application: Share with the children how difficult it can be for prideful people to accept Christ as their Savior. Explain that only through his grace can we become humble and give glory to God with our lives.
Close this part of the lesson in prayer . . .
We need your help! All the Bible materials on our website are open for improvement. Often our best ideas come from readers just like you. Simply leave a comment below with any corrections to this lesson or more suggestions that will help other readers.
> > > > Optional Activities < < < < <
The following suggestions will help you expand and customize our basic lessons. We always value your opinion, so leave a comment and help make this resource better for other readers.
Bible Memory: Use any of our creative methods to help the children memorize the Bible verse from this lesson plan.
Marshmallow Towers: This snack & activity is very hands-on as children build their own tower of Babel using marshmallows and toothpicks.
Activity Sheet: Use our template for kids to illustrate their own Tower of Babel coloring page.
Towering Cups Game: Use small paper bathroom cups (usually 5 oz) for a simple stacking challenge. Have the children work in groups of three to build towers from the cups. To encourage teamwork, have each child take turns adding one cup each to the structure.
Encouragement Game: This game idea will help children discover and talk about the talents God has given them.