By Cherie Werner
Materials needed: white boards, permanent markers (any color), dry erase markers (preferably red)
Start your lesson by discussing and acting out sins. Ask for suggestions from your students. You can use sins like lying, cheating, stealing, disobeying parents, being mean to a friend, or getting angry and lashing out. As the students name the sins, have small groups create skits or pantomimes of each sin and then discuss them as a group.
After each skit, name the sin involved and make a list. After the skits are over ask:
What is sin? (disobedience toward God)
Why is it wrong? (God has told us it is wrong in his Word.)
Why are these things, from our list, wrong? (God has given us the 10 Commandments and these things are violations of God’s Law.)
If you have time, categorize the list of sins under the appropriate commandments.
With the students, look up Bible verses that tell more about sin. Have several students or small groups of students look up the following verses: 1 John 1:8; Romans 3:23; and Isaiah 53:6. Then read together and discuss the verses.
What do these verses say about all of us? (We are all sinners.)
Is there anyone who is not a sinner? (No.)
How do we get rid of sin? (Wait for answers.) Let’s see what God has to say.
Again, in small groups have students look up: Romans 3:21-24; Ephesians 2:4-9; 1 John 1:8-9; Romans 5:8; and 1 John 3:16.
So, according to the Bible, how do we get rid of sin? (We can’t get rid of sin on our own. When Jesus died on the cross, he paid the penalty for our sins. When we confess our sins and receive his gift of forgiveness, our sins are washed away. They are gone.)
Read Romans 8:1 together.
Give each student a white board and a permanent marker. Have them write individual sins they have committed on their boards with the marker. (If you prefer, have each one write “I am a sinner.”) Then say,
Oh no! I gave you permanent markers instead of dry erase markers! Those sins are now on the boards forever. We can’t scrub them off. Just like this permanent marker, you can’t get rid of your sins on your own. Now imagine that this red marker is the blood Jesus shed on the cross. Use this marker to cover up your sins.
Have each student color over the permanent marker with the dry erase marker and then have them erase their boards.
Read 1 John 1:7 and discuss it together.
Read Psalm 51:10-12 together and talk about it.
Close with prayer. Lord Jesus, thank you for washing away my sins by shedding your blood on the cross. You take away all of my guilt and shame. In its place, you give me never-ending grace and love. I praise you, God! Put your Word in my heart every day. Teach me to follow you and help me to live a new life for you. Amen.
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