This Sunday: January 17th

Beulah Land: Jesus’s Baptism and Temptation

  • Memory Verse: John saw Jesus coming toward him and proclaimed, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world!”. John 1:29
  • Summary: Last Sunday, we met Jesus as a boy, teaching in the temple. This week, we meet him as an adult and learn about his baptism and then temptation in the desert. Kids LOVE when Jesus responds to the enemy with a firm “No! Get behind me, Satan. I serve God, not you!” and the teacher flicks the Satan figure off of the felt board onto the floor.
  • I Wonder… : why some people listened to John and others didn’t? why Jesus came to be baptized? why he went into the desert? who the enemy is? how we are safe from the enemy?
  • Additional Follow-up: Talk to your child about his/ her baptism story. Talk about your own. Let your child re-enact baptisms with a baby doll!
  • Just in case it comes up: This story is the first in which “the enemy” figure is used. After this story, he is put in a corner of the felt board as he waits and watches for the perfect time to “catch” Jesus. On Easter, he will be thrown down off the board once more and will not make another appearance until we see him as a serpent in Eden next Fall. In my experience, kids become curious about the enemy. He is a bad guy looking to hurt our hero. If your child starts asking questions, please know that is perfectly normal. Evil is big deal for all of us. You don’t have to censor their questions. The curriculum encourages parents to welcome questions, but draw a line at silly or sensational. A good way to answer questions is to do it simply and with straightforwardness… and with the reminder that Jesus has defeated evil and the enemy.

Godly Play I & II: Parable of the Great Banquet

  • Memory Verse: Go out into the highways and hedges and compel people to come in, that my house may be filled. Luke 14:23
  • Summary: We have kicked off our parable stories! This week is a new one to our classroom…the Parable of the Great Banquet, taken from Luke 14.
  • I Wonder…:  who the guests might really be? why they did not go? what the banquet might really be? if you have ever been invited to God’s banquet?
  • Additional Follow-up: Aren’t parables curious things? In response to a catty statement about being invited to the banquet of God, Jesus, like he does, flipped his audience upside down with a story about inviting the lame and poor to a feast… and not allowing certain others in. That’s on the tail end of exhorting his followers to bless people who could not bless them in return. I WONDER what all of this is about?

 You know we can’t mention this parable without remembering our favorite band, Rain for Roots. and how they tell this important tale!

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