Easter Sunday Options

There are many different ways to handle Easter Sunday in children’s church. Some children’s pastors believe this is an opportunity to reach children who are never in church with the Gospel. Others want to make it a fun day so children who don’t normally attend will want to come back. Still others think Easter Sunday should be for families, and children should be in the adult service with their parents.

Please take a moment to vote in this poll and let me know how you handle Easter Sunday. If you want, also add a comment with what you do to make the day special.

Free Kidmin Palm Sunday Lesson

Palm Sunday is this Sunday. Here’s a lesson that you can use to make the day powerful.

Theme: God Wants Children To Praise Him

Verse: Matthew 21:16 (NIV) … From the lips of children and infants you, Lord, have called forth your praise

Game: Pin the Tail on the Donkey

You can buy this at most party supply stores.

After playing the game a few times, talk to the children about how Jesus rode to Jerusalem on a donkey.

Activity: Palm Branch Limbo

To play “Palm Branch Limbo,” you will need a few palm branches. These branches are easily found in department stores and floral shops weeks leading up to Palm Sunday. The children will have to limbo under the palm branches while the other children around them cheer them on.

Remind the children of how palm branches were placed in front of Jesus as the crowd around Him cheered Him on and shouted praises to Him.

Bible Story: Jesus Enters Jerusalem (Matthew 21:1-17)

You can assign children parts and have them act out this story.

When Jesus entered Jerusalem on Palm Sunday, he rode in on a colt like a king. A colt is a young donkey. That means a child donkey held the full glory of God on his back. Child can have the full glory of God in them. You don’t have to wait until you’re grown up.

Everyone heard that Jesus was coming and ran out to meet Him. Some laid palm branches on the ground for Him to ride on. Others waved palm branches and shouted Hosanna, Son of David. They called Him Son of David because that was what they called the Messiah. They knew that the Messiah would have King David as an ancestor in His family tree. Hosanna means “save us” or “rescue us”. They were recognizing that Jesus is the Son of God who had come to save them. Imagine being in the crowd that day and waving palm branches to Jesus and shouting “Hosanna”.

After Jesus rode into Jerusalem, He went to the temple. There were men outside selling and cheating people. This made Jesus angry that these men would cheat people in the Temple of God. He knocked over their tables and said, “It is written, my house will be called a house of prayer. You have made it into a den of thieves.”

This made the religious leaders angry. They made money off these men who cheated the people.

At that point, children ran up to Jesus and waved palm shouting “Hosanna, Son of David.” Children, let’s use our hands to praise Jesus the way these children did. (Encourage the children to shout praises.)

Some of the religious leaders were angry that the children were praising Jesus. They said, “Do you hear what those children are saying? Tell them to be quiet.”

Jesus defended the children. He said, ““Have you never read,“‘From the lips of children and infants you, Lord, have called forth your praise?”

Jesus wants children to praise Him. (Encourage children to shout praises to God.)

Girl shows five fingers.Object Lesson: Wave Your Palms

When Jesus entered Jerusalem, children and adult grabbed palm branches to praise him with. We don’t always have palm branches around, but we can still praise Jesus with our palms. (Hold up your hands.) God created us with two palms we can always use to praise Him with. Let’s hold up our palms now and shout “Praise the Lord”.

Object Lesson: The Rocks Will Cry Out

Supplies Needed: rocks

If you have enough rocks, give a rock or pebble to each child to take home. Tell them to put it out some place to remind them to Praise the Lord.

Have any of you ever heard a rock talk? After the Pharisees tried to get Jesus to stop the children from praising Him, Jesus said something very interesting. He said if we don’t praise Him, the rocks will cry out praise.

(Show the rocks) Have any of you ever heard a rock speak? That was amazing what Jesus said. But if children hadn’t praised Him as the Messiah the day he entered Jerusalem, that’s just what would have happened. Rocks not only would have spoke, they would have cried out praises to God.

God still wants His children to praise Him. I don’t want the rocks to cry out my praise. I want to praise God with my own mouth.

Let’s do that right now. On the count of three, let’s all shout “Praise the Lord”.

child, kid, joy, faith, praise and happinessLesson: God Wants Children to Praise

Quote the memory verse for today’s lesson. Matthew 21:16 … From the lips of children and infants you, Lord, have called forth your praise

When Jesus said this, He said it in Hebrew. It was written down in Greek. And we quote the verse in English. What the verse really meant in the original language is that God taught children and babies to lead praise. That means that Jesus not only wants children to praise Him, He wants children to lead praise.

Have you ever seen a church that had children lead praise and worship in Big Church. Most churches normally have adults leading praise, but God wants children to lead praise. That doesn’t mean you have to join the adult praise team. But it does mean if you praise God with your whole heart, adults will see it and want to praise God too.

Ask the children to make a decision to praise God with their whole hearts. If you have time, lead them in another praise song and encourage them to praise God with their whole hearts while they sing it.

Craft Activity: Hand Palms

Supplies Needed: construction paper, craft (Popsicle) sticks, scissors

Have children trace their hand prints onto construction paper. Have them cut out the hand prints and glue them onto the craft sticks.

Remind the children that we made these palm branches to remind us that we all have palms to wave when we praise the Lord.s

6 Free Kidmin Object Lessons for Easter

Here’s some links for Easter object lessons and stories to help you plan your message Resurrection Sunday.

The Curtain Was Torn

Salvation Gospel Illusion

What’s Easter All About?

The Colors of Easter

He Paid the Price

The Empty Egg

6 Steps to Planning an Easter Party for Kidmin

Easter parties are great events to have for children in your ministry. Here some things to consider.

When will you have the party? Easter Sunday after church is not a practical time. But you could have the party during church on Easter. Or you could have the party after church on Palm Sunday. The Saturday before Palm Sunday and Easter Sunday are good times to have it as well.

What type of party will you have?

Easter Egg Hunts:  These are very popular, but they have drawbacks. You need to have church property large enough to hide the eggs to make if fun. If you don’t, look for a park or a parent’s yard where you can hide eggs. Don’t use real eggs. Buy the plastic eggs from the dollar store and stuff them with candy or toys you can buy in bulk. Or you can put tickets in the eggs the children can use to purchase prizes. That way, each child gets prizes. You’ll also want grand prizes you can give away to children who collect the most eggs. Easter baskets work good for this. In some areas of the country, snow and rain are problems at this time of year. If that’s the case, make sure to schedule a rain date.

Easter Carnival: A carnival can work well even indoors. Call your local carnival rental place and see if they’ll donate the games for the carnival. Some places will if the games aren’t being used. Also if you have a carpenter in your church, consider having him make some games you can use. You can give out tickets, candy, or prizes for each game won.

Fun Sunday: If you have the party during or after church on a Sunday, consider having pizza, pop, and treats for the children. You could also show an Easter movie in the sanctuary on the “big screen” like in a movie theater. You could have gospel illusions, games, crafts, and other activities.

How Will You Present The Message:  An Easter party is a prime opportunity to present the message of salvation to children. Think of a gospel illusion, story, or object lesson you can use for a short 5 minute message.

Get Donations:  Contact pizza places, bowling alleys, skating rinks, and fast food restaurants to see if they’d be willing to donate free gift certificates to their establishments that you can give as door prizes. Most businesses are willing to do this.

Plan Ahead:  Get the workers you need. Decide how you’ll spread the word. Find people to set up and do follow-up. The better you plan ahead, the better this party will go.

Pray:  This is a great opportunity to reach unchurched children. Pray for God to move during this party.

Salvation is a Free Gift that will Cost You Everything

Today I am reposting a blog post from a fiend of mine, with his permission, because children’s evangelist Jerry Moyer nailed this.

Salvation is a Free Gift that will Cost You Everything

by Jerry Moyer

Opening the magic chestI have noticed that when Christians describe their relationship with Jesus, they usually say “Jesus is my Lord and Savior.” Many times, it’s said so fast that it’s all slurred together like “Lordandsavior.” Like it’s all one word. Over the last several decades the church has focused a lot on the savior part and with much teaching on grace as of late most people understand that salvation is a free gift that is paid for with the blood of Jesus that washes away our sin, so we can be born again.

What I have not heard a lot about is that even though Salvation is a free gift it will cost you everything.

I can hear people saying now. “Well how’s that? If it’s free how does it cost anything?”

Well, it cost God his only son.

It cost Jesus his Life.

It will cost us our life.

Crossing the Jesus bridgeSalvation is FREE! There is nothing we can do to deserve it. It was paid for with the blood of Jesus. That’s why it’s called grace. We cannot earn it. Grace is an unearned favor. If you ask someone for a $5 favor you’re are asking them for $5 that you did not earn. It is not owed to you. We needed a huge favor from God and there is no way we could possibly earn it, pay for it, or be good enough to deserve it. Ephesians 2:8 says that “we are saved by grace through faith not of ourselves. It is the gift of God not by works.” Salvation is a gift from God that cannot be earned by good works. Most people have a pretty good grip on this part of the gospel.

What I feel we don’t have a good grip on is the Lord part. Romans 10:9 says “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”.

Sure, Jesus wants to be our savior or he would not have died on the cross, so we can be born again. But he also wants to be our Lord. The following Scriptures are things that Jesus said that we have not heard a lot about over the last several decades.

If ye love me, keep my commandments. John 14:15

Jesus said to his disciples, “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.” Matthew 16:24

christian-funky-retro-easter004Deny yourself means that we quit doing things our way and start doing things God’s way. When people in the bible times took up a cross only one thing happened. They died. We must die to ourselves and live unto God. Many times, dying hurts! When we die to our plans and take up God’s plans many times it will hurt. It will hurt because we really wanted to do certain things and now God might want us to do something different.

Jesus wants to be our Lord. Here in America we really don’t understand what Lord means like people in some other countries do. Lord means boss, master, we love what he loves and hate what he hates. When Jesus is our lord that means, we have turned our back on our way of doing things and we only do things His way. It will cost you everything to make Jesus your Lord. It will cost you your life. It will cost you your dreams and ambitions for your life for his dreams and ambitions for your life. Your plans and purposes for your life for his plans and purposes for your life. It’s not just saying “Jesus is my “Lordandsavior.” It actually means doing something. Doing his will for our life no matter what it cost us. Giving up our will for his will.

Jesus said in Luke 6:46 Why do you call me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not do what I say”?

He said in Matthew 7:21Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.”

I believe that too many times we have presented the gospel to people emphasizing the Free gift of salvation and say to people “come say this simple prayer and you will be saved” and have not told them that Jesus wants to be their Lord. When we have said make him your Lord and savior we have not explained what Lord means.

Salvation is a free Gift! But following Jesus will cost you everything!

I think we have done people a big disservice by presenting a one-sided message. Everyone wants a “FREE GIFT” especially one that will get you out of hell and into heaven. People have not really understood what they were getting into. Then after they find out that Jesus wants their whole life, their will, their everything they say to themselves “I did not sign up for all this” and many times fall away.

I have often wondered why so many Christians ride the fence with one foot in the church and one foot in the world. They want just enough of God to escape their problem, but not enough of God to fulfill His purpose. When evaluating how we have presented the message of salvation it’s no wonder we have so many halfhearted Christians that have said a prayer and might be born again but are not living for God. There is no difference in them and the world. They never really understood that this “FREE GIFT” was going to cost them anything. So, we have our American version of Christianity where we love our American lifestyle and culture so much, that we are not willing to conform it to God’s will for our life. We are not willing to give up anything to follow Jesus; and Jesus wants it all.

I realize that some may say aren’t you preaching a works salvation by talking like this?

To that I would say NO!

We are not saved by our good works. We are saved unto good works. Paul said in Ephesians 2:10 “For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them”. The change in our heart when we are born again will produce the good works. Sure, we have a will we can choose not to listen to our heart and not do the will of our father, but if Jesus is really Lord of your life then you will want to do the will of your heavenly father.

When we are born again there is a change in our spirit man. According to Romans 5:5 God puts his love in our heart. That love will cause us to want to do good. As we listen to that love in our heart and obey it, we will follow God’s plan for our life.

Jerry Moyer
Jubilee Gang Ministries
WWW.JUBILEEGANG.COM