Are Your Students Christians?

Many people have a misconception of what a Christian really is? Some think that as long as you’re a good person and have some concept of Jesus, you are a Christian. Others consider themselves Christians because they are a good person or they go to church and give money to worthy causes. None of those things make a person a Christian.

Some of the falsehoods have even crept into some children’s ministries. Children aren’t taught that they need to accept Jesus as their Savior and Lord. They’re taught that they need to be good to go to Heaven. Some of the misconceptions might even be because the people teaching them aren’t really Christians although they might believe they are.

This is what every child and adult needs to do to become a Christian.

John 14:6 (NIV)  Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

Jesus is the only way of salvation. There are not many ways to God. Good people who are members of other religions won’t make it into Heaven. God provided only one way – through Jesus Christ, the Son of God.

John 3:16  (NIV)  For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

God provides the way of salvation through Jesus Christ. Jesus isn’t the only way to Heaven because God is mean or vindictive to anyone who disagrees. God loves us. Without Jesus, there would be no salvation. That’s why He sent His Son, so that we can be saved.

Romans 3:23 (NIV)  For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.

We all have sinned. Nobody is good enough for Heaven. We’ve all failed. We’ve all sinned. If you don’t believe me, have you ever told a lie? Have you ever disobeyed your parents? Have you ever felt hate or lust in your heart? Have you ever been prideful? You’re not alone. This is where we start. We acknowledge we are sinners.

Romans 6:23 (NIV)  For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

We deserve Hell. Now that we’ve established we are all sinners, the next step is to understand that sinners deserve death, not just physical death, but spiritual death. We deserve Hell. Out only hope for Heaven is through God’s free gift, Jesus Christ.

Romans 10:9-10 (NIV)  If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.

We have to accept Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior. Salvation is a free gift, but we aren’t saved unless we accept that free gift. Romans 10:9-10 tells us what to do. There are two steps. First we believe in our heart through faith that Jesus died and was raised from the dead to save us from our sins. We can’t accept this salvation until we understand we need it. Once we accept that we have sinned, we accept Him as our Savior.

But there is another step. We must confess or declare Jesus is Lord. We can’t keep it to ourselves. We have given our lives to God and we must declare that He is Lord of our lives, both verbally and by a changes lifestyle. The change may not happen all at once. For most people it is a gradual change. But there must be a change to prove that we have made Jesus our Lord.

Romans 10:13 (NIV) For, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

Pray the sinner’s prayer. If you call upon the name of the Lord, Jesus Christ, in prayer, you will be saved. It’s that simple.

Here’s a prayer you can lead your students to pray:

Lord, Jesus. I am a sinner. I deserve Hell. I have no excuses. But you died on the cross and rose again to save me from my sin. I accept your free gift of salvation. I believe you are the Son of God, my Savoir. I give my life to you and declare you as my Lord. Thank you.

It’s simple, but there is a catch. Many have prayed this prayer but have not been saved. When you or your students pray it, you have to mean it from deep inside. If you do, this prayer will change your life.

Teaching Children about Heaven and Hell

Too many children’s pastors teach children about salvation and spending eternity in Heaven, but they leave something out. Jesus taught that those who accept Him as their Savior and follow Him will go to Heaven. But He also taught those who don’t accept Him will go to Hell. Unless we expect our students to all die before the age of accountability, we need to teach both.

On the other hand, scare tactics that convince children they might go to Hell if they snatch an extra cookie for dessert are not helpful in giving children a Biblical foundation.

Here are some things to keep in mind when teaching children about Heaven and Hell.

Heaven and Hell are real places.

John 14:2-3  My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.

Revelation 20:15  And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.

This is important because our society has such a misconception of Heaven and Hell, that children might get confused. The Bible teaches Heaven and Hell are real places where everyone will spend eternity.

God doesn’t want anyone to go to Hell.

Revelation 20:10  And the devil who had deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and sulfur where the beast and the false prophet were, and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.

Hell was created for the devil and his demons. God doesn’t want anyone to go to Hell. That’s why He provided a way of escape, so that no one has to go there.

You can’t go to Heaven by being good.

Romans 3:23  For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.

Romans 6:23  For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Many people have the false assumption that if they are good people, they will go to Heaven, and bad people will go to Hell. This isn’t true. Nobody is good enough for Heaven. Everyone deserves Hell.

Jesus died on the cross so we can go to Heaven and escape Hell.

John 3:16-18  For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.

Children should be taught that Jesus is the only way to salvation and to Heaven. If a child has accepted Jesus as his Lord and Savior, he is saved and will go to Heaven.

Getting right with God so we can go to Heaven is the most important thing in life.

Matthew 10:28  And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell.

This is a great opportunity to teach about martyrs of the Faith. Teach the children that these martyrs understood that serving God and going to Heaven is more important than even living. If that’s true, then our entire lives should be spent serving God.

We need to share the Gospel so people won’t go to Hell.

Revelation 20:15  And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.

When we teach children who know Christ as their Savior about Heaven and Hell, the next step is to teach them they need to share the truth with others. Anyone whose name is not written in the Lamb’s Book of Life, will go to Hell.

Here are some online children’s lessons on Heaven and Hell:

Heaven Sunday School Lesson

Kid’s Sunday School Place – Heaven

Heaven and Hell Airplane Trick

The Rich Man and Lazarus