Sunday, February 26, 2012

Signs of the Times

Lesson: Jesus is Coming Again Soon

1. Lesson (based on Luke 17:20-37; 21:5-37)

  • Introduction: 
    • Show some pictures of common road signs and get children to guess what each one means.
    • These signs show us what to expect when we are driving on the road. They serve as warnings and reminders of what lies ahead so that we can be aware and prepared.
  • Before He died, Jesus also spoke about signs — these signs tell us that after He goes back to be with the Father, He is coming again. 
  • He told a Parable of the Trees (Luke 21:29-31) — During the winter time, the trees all drop their leaves. But when you see new leaves begin to grow, then you know that summer is near. In the same way, when you see these signs, you know that Jesus is coming back again soon.
  • Some of these signs are:
    • Attacks on the Church:
      • The Church will be persecuted for believing in Jesus — brought before rulers
      • Family — parents, brothers, sisters, relatives — and friends will hate and betray you even to death.
      • But Jesus tells us not to worry. He is our wisdom — He will tell us what to do or to say. We will be able to share about Jesus with all these people
      • We don’t have to worry what people do to us. If we stay in Jesus, He will take care of us. Jesus says “Not a hair of your head will perish.”
    • In Nature / In the Natural World:
      • Great earthquakes, famines and diseases in various places (can show pix or news reports of Japan, New Zealand and China earthquakes; H1N1, Bird Flu etc)
      • Great signs from heaven — the sun, moon and stars; you might feel like the sky is falling!
      • Roaring and tossing of the sea (e.g. Boxing Day and Japanese Tsunamis)
      • The earth is longing for Jesus to return. Creation has been groaning in expectation. (Rom 8:22)
      • When you hear of natural disasters or epidemics, remember … Jesus is coming again soon!
    • Wannabes / Great Pretenders:
      • Jesus said that many will come and pretend to be Him. People may run after them or follow these people. Jesus warns us not to believe or follow them.
      • Jesus tells us that no one will know the exact time of His coming. Only God knows. And it will come suddenly.
      • Jesus tells us that when He comes again, the whole world can see Him at once! He will be like the lightning — flashing and lighting up the sky from one end to the other. He will come in a cloud with power and great glory.
      • We don’t have to listen to others who tell us to go somewhere to see Jesus because we can ALL see Him! And He is coming back for US!

  • What we can do:
    • Be watchful: Each time we see one of these signs, we know that Jesus is coming again soon! So don’t focus on the cares of life (just being concerned about day-to-day worries and pleasures), but look forward to Jesus’ coming again because He is bringing us back to the Father!
    • Do not fear: These things may seem scary, but it’s the beginning of something great — the Bible says it’s like “birth pangs”, when a mummy is giving birth to a new baby. At first it seems painful and scary, but then new life comes out.
    • Jesus = forever! Everything around us may go. Our friends may go. The earth may go. But Jesus will never go.
  • Memory Verse: Luke 21:33 Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.

2. Activity Suggestion

  • Worksheet

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