Archive for July, 2015

Jonah and Nineveh

Our hope is for our kids to know that: God grace extends beyond Israel’s borders

Key Verse:
“You are the light of the world”
Matthew 5:14

Read:
(Open the bible and read to your child Jonah 1-2) Jonah did not like the people of Nineveh, so when he was instructed to go to Nineveh and tell them to repent, he refused. Not only did he refuse, he ran away in the opposite direction. However, this did not work. He boarded a ship to Tarshish which eventually got caught in a violent storm. The crew determined that Jonah was the reason for this and threw him overboard. At that point he was swallowed by a giant fish where he stayed for three days. Jonah realized that God wanted him to share the message of repentance to everyone, because many have not heard about God. His grace extends to everyone.

The Jesus Connection:
Read Matthew 12:39–40.
Jesus tells us that the three days Jonah spent in the belly of a fish was a picture foretelling the time that Jesus’ crucified body would be in the grave before the resurrection. God had a plan to rescue Jonah from his sin of disobedience. God’s plan for Jonah involved three days swallowed up in a fish. Jonah found his salvation in God. In the end Jonah was released and went on to preach repentance to Nineveh. God has a plan to rescue us from our sin through Jesus. Jesus died on the cross for our sins and spent three days in the grave swallowed up by death. But death could not hold him, and on the third day he rose again. Now the message of repentance and faith in Christ is proclaimed all over the world. The question for us is, will we trust in him?

Naaman is Cured

Our hope is for our kids to know that: God Welcomes Repentant Sinners

Key Verse:
16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew, then to the Gentile.
Romans 1:16

Read:
(Open the bible and read to your child 2 Kings 5) Naaman had Leprosy, a disease caused by bacteria that affects both the skin and internal organs. Leprosy often starts as a white patch on the face and can spread quickly, leading to boil-like sores. Naaman, a Syrian Commander, wanted to be cured of this disease. Namaan is sent to the king of Israel who reacts in fear. However, Elisha took control and told Namaan to wash in the Jordan River. At first Namaan didn’t want to listen to Elisha, but eventually he went and did as Elisha said. As a result, Namaan’s leprosy is healed and his faith in God grew strong.

The Jesus Connection:
Read 1 Peter 2:24.
Just as God healed Naaman, so we look to God for our healing. Peter tells us that we can be healed because of the finished work of Christ. Healing is possible for us because of what Jesus did on the cross. We look to God for our healing from the spiritual sickness of sin as well as physical sickness. Elisha’s cleansing of Naaman’s leprosy points forward to Jesus and the healing of the lepers in his ministry. In Luke 4:27 Jesus says: “There were many lepers in Israel in the time of the prophet Elisha, and none of them was cleansed, but only Naaman the Syrian.” Naaman foreshadowed the plan of God to reach the Gentiles with the grace of the gospel.