Sunday 12th April
Theme: Hallelujah – He is risen
Target Age Group: 3 - 9
Approximate Time: 30 – 40 mins
Today is a day of celebration for all of us, whatever our circumstances, because today Christians all over the world get to celebrate Jesus risen from the dead. Why is that Good news for us? Because by rising from the dead Jesus has defeated death and defeated sin and shown that death is not the end. Especially during this troubled time it is so important for us to hang on to the fact that Jesus is higher than sickness and pain, death and suffering. Why? Because, as it says in Romans 8, ‘Nothing can separate us from the love of God’. Even the very worst of our sinfulness, brokenness and weakness doesn’t stop God from loving us. And that is why today, as we reflect on the mystery of Jesus rising from the dead, we celebrate
Icebreaker: Good News
Can you think of a time when you heard good news?
What is the best news you’ve ever heard?
Get someone to start by whispering some good news into their neighbour’s ear. They in turn then share what they’ve heard with the person next to them and so on until you get round the circle. The last person shouts out what they think they’ve heard. Can you get all the way round without making a mistake?
Video: Lego Easter Story
Watch the Lego Easter Story https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-M8Yesnt1V8
1. What were some of the key things that happened to Jesus during the story?
2. How did it make you feel as you watched the video?
3. Why is it important that Jesus rose from the dead at the end of the story?
Look up the song ‘O Happy Day’ by Tim Hughes and play it. You may wish to join in with the words and sing together. For those of you that would like to learn some actions click the bottom link
Scripture: Matthew 28:1-15
Read the story of the resurrection in Matthew 28:1-15
The Resurrection is the most important part of our Christian story. Without the resurrection the cross would have been seen as a sign of defeat and failure. But the fact that Jesus rose again changes everything. Death did not win and it was not the end. Instead, by rising again, Jesus proved that he is more powerful than death and that the grave couldn’t hold him. It also put an end to the power of sin and meant that once again we could be friends with God. Just think about that for a second. Even with all the times that we are horrible to each other or fail to do the right thing, God still loves us. In fact, he loves you so much that he was prepared to sacrifice even His own son so that you could be friends with Him.
And even though it sounds impossible, the resurrection is a historical event with evidence. It is recorded in all four gospels (Matthew 28, John 20, Luke 24 and Mark 16). The first piece of evidence is the evidence from the scene itself – in this passage we see the stone rolled away, the violent earthquake and the presence of the angel. The second piece of evidence is that Jesus appears to witnesses. In this passage we see Jesus appearing and speaking to the women themselves in verses 9 and 10 and there are many other stories of Jesus appearing (The Road to Emmaus in Luke 24:13-35 or the appearance to Thomas in John 20:24-29). The third piece of evidence is the response of the authorities. Even in this short passage we see that they haven’t removed the body themselves as their response is to blame the disciples. But we already know that the disciples haven’t taken the body so the only logical conclusion is that Jesus has risen.
So we can be confident that the resurrection is real, it happened. And if it happened it means that the God that we worship is mighty and powerful and strong, stronger than the corona virus and stronger even than death. So you can be joyful today because that same God did all of that out of love for you.
1. Create an Easter Booklet using the PDF file in the Easter Sunday Resources. Cut each section of the story out, colour the pictures and glue down the middle to create your very own cartoon strip of Easter
2. Create an Easter Garden. This can either be down using bits from your recycling; Cardboard boxes, Egg Box Tombs, etc or you could look for resources in your garden; sticks for crosses, stones for the tomb, soil, etc. Try to capture some of the different elements of the story, the crosses, the tomb, maybe even the garden of Gethsemene
In response to the resurrection, first and foremost, we should be thankful for what Jesus has done. Spend some time thanking God for all the good gifts you have in your life. Then, in the same way, that the women were called to share the good news with the disciples, we are called to share the good news about Jesus with those around us. Create a simple ‘He is Risen’ poster to put in your window and pray for the people that walk past your house, that they too may come to know that Jesus is the Risen Lord.
Song: Our God is so big
Finish by joyfully singing ‘Our God is so big, so strong and so mighty’
Or for a more upbeat version with actions;