John Called Disciples

Sunday, May 3, 2020


In the first century, rabbi was a title given to a respected expert in the law of Moses. A rabbi studied the Scriptures and taught through speaking and writing. Jews wanted to honor God in how they lived, and they looked to the rabbis to instruct them in their behavior.

The word rabbi translates “my master.” Jewish students would seek out a rabbi and ask to follow him. A rabbi would choose only a few highly-promising students to be his disciples. If a student was not accepted by the rabbi, he likely returned home to learn a trade. Those chosen to be a rabbi’s disciples followed him everywhere. They learned from the rabbi how to think and how to act. They trusted the rabbi, and the goal was to become just like him.

When Jesus chose His disciples, His strategy was unusual. Rather than waiting for students to come to Him, Jesus sought out His disciples among the people who followed Him. He found them working—fishing and repairing nets. Some of Jesus’ disciples were introduced to Him by their friends. He approached these ordinary men and said, “Follow Me.” Their response? “Immediately they left … and followed him” (Matt. 4:20,22).

The Twelve—Simon (Peter) and his brother Andrew; James and John; Philip; Bartholomew; Matthew; Thomas; James, son of Alphaeus; Thaddaeus; Simon; and Judas—spent time with Jesus during His ministry. Jesus taught them how to live in light of God’s coming kingdom. He commissioned them to teach others about Him. The good news about Jesus is too great not to share with the entire world. 

The call to follow Jesus is not an easy one. Jesus said, “If anyone wants to follow after me, let him deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me” (Matt. 16:24). Jesus calls us to do the same—to surrender our lives for His purposes and perhaps even to die. “For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life because of me will find it” (Matt. 16:25).
 
Jesus came to earth to show what God is like and to save people from their sins. This is great news! Jesus told His disciples to tell others about Him, and we are Jesus’ disciples when we trust in Him. Everyone in the world needs to hear the good news about Jesus.

Go to our website, stonewaterchurch.com, scroll down to the Kids’ Service button and click on “Parents” for ways to interact with the Bible content this week.

FAMILY STARTING POINTS 

  • Babies and Toddlers
    • ○ Jesus’ friends love Him and tell others about Him.
    • ○ Jesus obeyed God’s plan.
    • ○ Jesus chose twelve disciples.
    • ○ Jesus taught His disciples about God’s plan.
    • ○ People who love Jesus are also His disciples.
  • Preschool
    • ○ Jesus chose disciples to follow Him.
    • ○ Why did Jesus become human? Jesus became human to rescue sinners.
  • Kids
    • ○ Jesus called disciples to follow Him. 
    • ○ Why did Jesus become human? Jesus became human to obey His Father’s plan and rescue sinners.
  • UNIT KEY PASSAGE: John 3:30
  • NEXT WEEK : Jesus’ Early Miracles” (Mark 1)

Jesus’ Temptation

Sunday, April 19, 2020

Satan wants to ruin God’s plan. In Genesis 3, he tempted Adam and Eve to disobey God. Sin entered the world, and the perfect relationship between God and man was broken. But all along, God had a plan to rescue His people through His Son. So when Jesus came to earth, Satan didn’t back down. After Jesus was baptized—beginning His ministry and effectively declaring war on Satan—Satan tempted Jesus.

If Satan could just get Jesus to stray from God’s perfect plan—if he could just get Jesus to sin—then Jesus would be disqualified to be the sinless Savior people needed. But Satan could not stop God’s plan.

Jesus’ temptation is not primarily an example to be followed but more a declaration of who Jesus is. He is the answer to God’s promise of a descendant who would crush the head of the snake. (Gen. 3:15) Jesus is the perfect sacrifice required to take away sin. Where Adam failed, Jesus succeeded. Adam brought guilt and death to the human race, but Jesus brings forgiveness and life to all who trust in Him.

Even today, the devil works hard “to steal and kill and destroy” (John 10:10). Teach kids that the power to resist temptation comes from Jesus. Kids may struggle to understand that following Jesus won’t mean instant eradication of temptation and sin in our lives. (Sanctification is a lifelong process!) Pray that your kids would see Jesus as their greatest treasure—more valuable than any instant gratification the world has to offer.

Finally, give your kids hope for when they fail. Jesus’ perfect obedience is credited to those who trust in Him. Remind the kids that “if we confess our sins, he [God] is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9). We can boldly approach God’s throne to receive both grace and mercy when we need it. (See Heb. 4:14-16.)

 Jesus was tempted, but He trusted God and never sinned. Jesus is perfect and righteous. A perfect sacrifice was required to take away sin. Jesus was that perfect sacrifice. He died on the cross to free us from sin and to give us the power to say no to temptation.

Go to our website, stonewaterchurch.com, scroll down to the Kids’ Service button and click on “Parents” for ways to interact with the Bible content this week.

FAMILY STARTING POINTS 

  • FAMILY STARTING POINTS 
  • Babies and Toddlers
    • ○ Jesus always did what was right.
    • ○ Jesus obeyed God’s plan.
    • ○ Jesus was tempted in the wilderness.
    • ○ Jesus always obeyed God’s words.
    • ○ God sent Jesus because He loves us.
  • Preschool
    • ○ Jesus was tempted and never sinned.
    • ○ Why did Jesus become human? Jesus became human to rescue sinners.
  • Kids
    • ○ Jesus was tempted and never sinned. 
    • ○ Why did Jesus become human? Jesus became human to obey His Father’s plan and rescue sinners.
  • UNIT KEY PASSAGE
  • John 3:30
  • NEXT WEEK 
  • “John Pointed to Jesus” (Matthew 3; John 1,3)

Jesus’ Crucifixion and Resurrection

Sunday, April 12, 2020

Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection are essential to the Christian faith. If we teach Jesus as a respected teacher and miracle-worker who claimed to be the Messiah and who was crucified on the cross—but who was not resurrected—then we are teaching the Jesus of Judaism. If we teach Jesus as a wise teacher and prophet who ascended into heaven—but who was not crucified—then we are teaching the Jesus of Islam.

Jesus’ purpose for coming to earth was to save us from our sins. (Matt. 1:21) Jesus came to die to show God’s love to us (Rom. 5:7-8) so that whoever believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life. (John 3:16) Jesus came to die so that we would be forgiven. (Eph. 1:7) Jesus came to die to bring us to God. (1 Pet. 3:18)

Jesus died on the cross to satisfy the wrath of God toward sin. His resurrection proved that God was satisfied with Jesus’ sacrifice. If Jesus had died but not been raised up, He would have been like military leaders who died without a throne. (Acts 5:33-37) But Jesus conquered death, just as He said He would. (John 2:19-21) If there was no resurrection, Paul says, our faith would be worthless. We would be dead in our sins. (1 Cor. 15:17)

But Jesus’ resurrection gives us hope for our resurrection. The same Spirit that raised Jesus from the dead will raise our bodies to life. (Rom. 8:11)

Jesus’ death and resurrection is the center of the gospel. In Adam, we were spiritually dead in sin, but Jesus died to pay for our sins. Jesus is alive! God gives new life to everyone who trusts in Jesus. As you share with your kids, emphasize the gospel: the good news of who Jesus is and what He has done. We do not worship a dead Savior. Jesus is alive! There is hope for sinners. Jesus’ resurrection gives believers the promise of new life. “For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all will be made alive” (1 Cor. 15:22). 

Go to our website, stonewaterchurch.com, scroll down to the Kids’ Service button and click on “Parents” for ways to interact with the Bible content this week.

FAMILY STARTING POINTS 

  • Babies and Toddlers
    • ○ Jesus brings forgiveness and life with God forever.
    • ○ Jesus obeyed God’s plan.
    • ○ God sent Jesus to rescue us.
    • ○ Jesus died on the cross and is alive.
    • ○ People who trust in Jesus will be alive with Him forever!
  • Preschool
    • ○ Jesus gives us life with God forever.
    • ○ Why did Jesus become human? Jesus became human to rescue sinners.
  • Kids
    • ○ Jesus’ resurrection gives us hope for eternal life. 
    • ○ Why did Jesus become human? Jesus became human to obey His Father’s plan and rescue sinners.
  • UNIT KEY PASSAGE
  • John 3:30
  • NEXT WEEK 
  • “Jesus’ Temptation” (Matthew 4; Mark 1; Luke 4)