Lessons

Believe! A Free Easter Sunday School Lesson

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You can get weekly free lessons (and over a year of curriculum) at our Worship Theme Lessons For Youth site.

Note to the Teacher

This Easter Sunday, We are going to look at the story through our lens of emotions.  How does it make us feel?  What emotions do we discover in the text itself, and how does it speak into our life today.Where have I seen God’s generosity?

Times are based on a 50-minute lesson period but can be adjusted as is necessary.

10 minPass around a bowl of jelly beans and have each student take a handful, but instruct them not to eat them quite yet. Have a list of questions that correspond with each color, and have the students go around answering the questions that correspond with the colors of jelly beans that they took. Below is a list of question possibilities. You may have to change them up a bit to match the color jelly beans that you have. 
 
Red: What is your favorite Easter memory?
Green: What is your least favorite Easter memory?
Yellow: What is your favorite kind of Easter candy?
Purple: What is your favorite church tradition during Lent/ Easter?
Orange: What is your favorite part of Easter dinner?
White: What is the weirdest thing you ever found in an Easter egg?
 20 minRead scripture and Discuss
Have the students take turns reading the following scriptures out loud for the group. 
Acts 10:34-43, Psalm 118:1-2, 14-24, 1 Corinthians 15:19-26, John 20:1-18
Discuss the following questions;
*What do these verses have in common?
*What do they have to say about how we should feel on Easter or because of the resurrection of Jesus?
*What did it take for Mary to realize and believe that it was Jesus she was talking to?
*What does it say about our own relationships with Jesus?
*What does Jesus’ death and resurrection mean to you personally?
*How does what you believe about Jesus and His resurrection change the way you live your life?

20 min   3. Activity
Clean Belief:
Items needed: Large clear glass bowl, white fabric, small sheet of thin clear plastic, pitcher of water, iodine or food coloring, bleach, glass container to place bleach, spray starch

Prep: Cut out a cross shape from the white cloth. This has to be submerged in the water, so make sure you cut it to the appropriate size for that.Then cut another cross shape (the same size) from a piece of thin clear plastic.Use a paperclip or staple the two crosses together, so that the cloth retains its shape when wet. Spray the cloth cross with the starch and leave to dry.
 
Say Something Like:
In our culture, sometimes Easter becomes all about our belief in a bunny who brings us candy and treats on Easter morning, or it becomes focused on Easter eggs and Easter dinner with our families. While none of these are bad things, as followers of Jesus we know there is much more to it than that. Our belief in the death and resurrection of Jesus, that we celebrate at Easter is foundational to our faith lives. 
 
Do This:
Fill the bowl halfway with water and place the cross inside. As you do this, say something like, we believe that, though we may sin and sometimes make a mess of things, (add several drops of iodine or food coloring to the water in the bowl), and it is those very sins that held Jesus on the cross, (lift the cross slightly out of the water so students can see the color change), we hold firm to the belief that Jesus’ paid the price for our sins and His blood will wash us clean as snow. (Pour bleach from container into the bowl. The color should disappear from both the water and the cross). This is the hope that we have in the resurrection, forgiveness for the ways we mess things up and a promise for an eternal life. This is the good news of, not only Easter Sunday, but every day! That while Jesus was crucified and died the cross, He was resurrected, and because of that we can have eternal life!! And even though this is something we collectively believe, it is something deeply personal for each one of us as well. Just like Jesus called Mary’s name, He calls each of our names as well. What is left for us is to trust and believe. 
 
Discuss:
*How does it make you feel to know that Jesus did this for you? 
*Is there anything that is hard for you to believe about Jesus’ death and resurrection?
 
Reflection:
Allow each student some time in quiet reflection and prayer to consider those things that might hold them back from full belief in Jesus and the hope of Easter, and encourage them to spend some time giving those things up to God and letting go of them. This might be a good place for journals or paper and writing utensils for students who may like to write or draw out their prayers.
  Close in the manner that is typical for you. Consider taking joys/concerns from the students, then asking for a volunteer to close in prayer.
50 min Needed Materials:BucketsCandyCups & spoons

Chasity is the Outreach and Education Coordinator at Christ UMC in Newcomerstown, Ohio. Chasity is passionate about empowering and equipping teens and young adults to make a difference in the world through the life changing power of Jesus. She is also pretty passionate about hanging out with her awesome husband and family, mission work to Cuba, traveling, sweet tea, all things Spanish and cooking. You can follow her on Twitter: @ChasLOpp

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