- At the beginning of the class, ask the children to report their fears while you list them where all can see. For example, death, losing a parent, failure, having no friends, becoming poor, etc.,
- Tell the children to decide which two things on the list they fear the most. When they hear you read their biggest fear, they put their hand
up. Tally the responses and write the results where all can see.
- These are all scary situations. Which two do you fear most? Allow response time to count tally marks. These require us to be brave or to have courage. What is courage? (doing something even though you are afraid, etc.) Courage is doing the thing God wants you to do, even when it’s hard.
- Read aloud Acts 4:29. What word is used for courage in this verse? (boldness) Here Jesus’ friends are praying in the church that God will
give them power or boldness.
- If any of your church friends are scared and need the courage to do what God wants, what will you do? (Pray for them and tell them about God’s power.)
- How can you learn about God’s power? (Go to church, study the Bible, pray.) And that leads me to our message for today. I’ll say it, then let’s say it together: At Church, We Learn Of God’s Power In Our Lives
Have the children act out the story as you tell it. Today’s story is meant to emphasize the boldness brought about by the Holy Spirit when believers pray for power.
Characters: Peter, John, lame man, priests, guards, captain of guards,Sadducees, the crowd (All other children become the crowd of listeners, then later the Sanhedrin, and finally, the praying believers.)
Tell the children to listen for church, community, or believers. When they hear those words, they should join hands.
Setting: Designate one corner of the room as a “jail.” The lame man sits begging to one side at the front of the room.
Peter and John are on their way to the Temple. A lame man calls to them and holds out his arms. [Peter and John approach the lame man. The man raises his arms.]
Peter and John stop. They tell him that they have no money [Peter and John shake heads], but that they will give what they have. They call on the name of Jesus, and the man is healed. [The man jumps up.]
People come running. [Beckon for everyone to gather around.] They crowd around Peter and John.
The people ask many questions about the healing and Jesus and the Resurrection. Peter and John [point to Peter and John] speak to them boldly.
[Enter priests and captain, followed by Sadducees.] Then suddenly some priests and the captain of the Temple guard push their way through the crowd.
- “Arrest those men,” the priests command. The captain grabs Peter and John and hurries them off to jail. [The captain puts them in the “jail.”]
(You children who were the “crowd” now become the Sanhedrin, which is like a Jewish government. Return to your seats and try to look stiff and proud.)
- The next morning the guards take Peter and John to stand before the Sanhedrin.[Bring Peter and John back upfront. The man who was healed follows.]
- The Sanhedrin is quiet. One of the leaders [choose a child to be the leader] stands. He clears his throat and speaks. “How did you do this? What power did you use? In whose name did you do it?” [The leader echoes you.]
- Peter is just an ordinary fisherman. Will he be afraid to answer? Filled with the Holy Spirit, he begins to speak with power and courage.
- “Are you questioning us about a kindness done yesterday to a man who was lame? [The healed man stands by Peter.] If you are, you should know that this man stands healed because of the power of Jesus.”
- Peter continues boldly, “Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven . . . by which we must be saved” (Acts
- The Sanhedrin is amazed at Peter’s courage. [Children scratch their heads and look puzzled.] “How can ordinary fishermen speak so well and with such power?” they ask. “Huge crowds come to hear them preach. It must be because they have been with Jesus.”
- “What shall we do with these men?” a leader asks. [The Sanhedrin
members “talk” to each other.] Finally, they command Peter and John, “Do not talk anymore in the name of Jesus!”
- But Peter and John stand firm and say, “Is it right in God’s sight to obey you rather than God?”
- The Sanhedrin members are afraid to punish Peter and John because too many people are praising God for what has happened. So the
leaders warn Peter and John. [The Sanhedrin rulers shake their fingers at Peter and John.] Then they set the apostles free.
You children who are the Sanhedrin now become the believers [join
hands]. You are the first church [join hands]. The people in a church [join hands] are also called a community of believers [join hands].
- Peter and John hurry to be with the community of believers [join hands]. “Now, Lord,” they pray, “make Your servants able to speak
Your Word with great boldness.
- Suddenly the meeting place shakes and rattles. What power! The Holy Spirit fills all the believers [join hands]. Everyone in the church [join hands] speaks with power about Jesus.
- What did the rulers ask Peter and John?
- By whose name was the lame man healed?
- What does Jesus’ name bring to us?
- What did the rulers order Peter and John NOT to do?
- When Peter and John were set free, where did they go?
- What did the believers do when they heard Peter and John’s story
- What happened after they prayed?
- How did Peter and John know so much about Jesus? (They were with Him a lot.)
- Why did they want to tell everyone about Jesus? (What Jesus has done for us is good news.)
- How do you feel about telling others about Jesus? (OK, great, scared)
- How can your church community help you to share Jesus boldly? (by praying for you and encouraging you)