How are things going? Have you been to school this past week? How was that? New teachers? any new classmates?
This week in Sunday School we're learning about the commandment about not stealing. It is one of the final few weeks in this series!
While we're still not meeting together in the classroom we are continuing with Sunday school online, and if you're in the church building on Sunday we have activity packages for you.
Before we jump into this weeks lesson, lets begin with a couple of songs. These songs are ones we've done over the last couple of weeks and so should now be getting to be familiar to us.
SUNDAY SCHOOL WORSHIP
So, we've been learning about God’s commands. Those are things God tells us we must do to keep us safe and healthy. Since we’ll be learning about God’s rules that keep us safe and healthy, we’re going to add a new street sign to our road. Street signs tell us the right thing to do to keep us safe too.
This is the sign we're adding to our road. Our bible story today will be about someone who stole some money, so this sign reminds us not to steal.
No one wants their things to be stolen. Stealing hurts us and others. That’s why God says we don’t steal. Today we’ll read about someone who hurt Jesus and his friends by stealing from them.
We probably have been told before not to steal, but maybe its hard to know what’s really stealing.
If you find money on the ground, should you take it? Can you explain why you should or shouldn't?
Let’s see a story where that happened and two friends had to decide what to do.
What did you think about Noah’s choices in this story? What about Jared’s?
How would it have hurt someone if Jared had kept the money?
We don’t steal. Even though Jared wanted the money, keeping it meant a kindergartener couldn’t afford a book at the book fair. Taking from other people is selfish. Instead, we can give generously.
Today we heard that Judas was in charge of gathering money for Jesus’ friends. Let’s play a game and see how many cotton balls we can gather. This game is a take on the game "Hungry, Hungry Hippos"
Judas took some of the money that belonged to Jesus’ friends for himself. In our game, our friends lost some of the cotton balls they’d collected. We may have wanted to grab those for ourselves. At times we might want to take other things that belong to someone else, like treats or toys. But we don’t steal. Instead we can ask someone to share.
Today’s Bible story is about a guy named Judas. You may know him as the guy who betrayed his friend Jesus and helped people arrest and kill Jesus. But this story happens before he did all that.
You see, Judas was one of Jesus’ 12 disciples. The disciples were Jesus’ closest friends, and they followed him around and learned from him.
Judas was the treasurer for the group. That means he was in charge of the money. So when they would go to the market, Judas was responsible for buying the food.
And when they went to the Temple, Judas was in charge of the offering. When they needed new sandals, Judas paid the bill. When they had to stay at an inn, Judas handled the payment, or if they had to rent a donkey, Judas would pay the fee.
But there was a problem. Judas was a thief.
How do you think the other disciples would have felt if they had known Judas was stealing some of their money?
So…Judas was in charge of the money, but he stole some. That goes against today’s commandment: We don’t steal. Exodus 20:15 says "You must not steal anything."
All that background brings us to today’s Bible story. Let’s look at what happened from Judas’ point of view.
Put yourself in the mind of Judas. You’re always trying to get as much money for yourself as possible. What do you think when you see Mary pouring this expensive perfume?
Let’s see what Judas said in John 12:4-5;
"Judas Iscariot, one of Jesus’ followers, was there—the one who would later hand Jesus over to his enemies. Judas said, “That perfume was worth a full year’s pay. It should have been sold, and the money should have been given to the poor people.”"
Do you believe that was Judas’ real reason for being mad? Why or why not?
Let’s keep reading... John 12:6 says;
"But Judas did not really care about the poor. He said this because he was a thief. He was the one who kept the moneybag for the group of followers. And he often stole money from the bag."
We don’t steal. If we do steal, it messes up our hearts! We get greedy, wanting more and more for ourselves. Judas didn’t care about the poor. He cared about a woman wasting perfume that was worth a lot of money, because he wanted that money for himself.
We know that Judas’ heart was greedy and self-centered, because he was stealing money for himself. But what about Mary’s heart? Let’s consider the story again from her point of view.
Judas focused on taking more and more for himself. How would you describe Mary’s heart?
While Judas was greedy, Mary was generous. What she did was the opposite of stealing. She could’ve kept the perfume; it was hers to begin with.
Why do you think Mary gave up the perfume?
Mary willingly gave up what she had as an act of worship to Jesus.
Mary wanted to worship Jesus, so she gave generously. And here’s what Jesus said in John 12:7-8;
"Jesus answered, “Don’t stop her. It was right for her to save this perfume for today—the day for me to be prepared for burial. You will always have those who are poor with you. But you will not always have me.”"
What are some differences between Mary’s perspective of the events and Judas’ perspective?
When it comes to money and things, we can be greedy or we can be generous. But God’s way is best, and he shows us that we don’t steal. We don’t try to take more and more for ourselves like Judas did. Instead, we give generously like Mary did.
CRAFT / COLOURING
Talk About Our Hands
God made our hands. When we pray, sometimes we put our hands together. That keeps our hands from wanting to play. Instead, we pray!
We can do so many other wonderful things with our hands, too. Can you think of some things you like to do with your hands? Things like shaking hands when meeting someone new? Making chocolate chip cookies? Shooting a basketball? Giving your friend a high-five, colouring a picture.
Tell about your favorite thing to do with your hands. Sometimes we can do things with our hands that aren’t good, like stealing. God commands us, “We don’t steal.” Stealing hurts others. Let’s make something to help us remember to use our hands for good things, like talking to God, instead.
Make Praying Hands
We can remember that we don’t steal with this rhyme: "If we stop and pray, we don’t take things away."
We shouldn't steal, let's use our hands to pray instead.
Please help us in the moments when we see something that doesn't belong to us, a toy or a snack, or maybe something else... please let us hear you reminding us that you have commanded us not to steal, and help us to we take that moment to talk with you instead.
Thank you for being such a loving God.