Teaching Your Kids About Jesus
Throughout our series "Bones of our Beliefs" we're discussing what we believe and why we believe it. As a parent, I believe it's important to also explain what you believe and why to your children. Since our daughter is six years old and starting to ask questions, I thought it was the perfect opportunity to explain to her the bones of our belief and share that journey with you. Feel free to use these blogs to start conversations with your kids and to add comments on how you have explained the bones of your belief with your family.
Last week we talked about how we believe God created everything. This week, we'll be talking about God's son, Jesus. We believe that Jesus is God's only son and he came down to earth from Heaven to restore our (people's) broken relationship with God.
Every Christmas we celebrate Jesus' birth. Even though Jesus has always existed in heaven with God, when He came down to visit earth, He became human like you and me. God chose Mary to be Jesus' mother and she gave birth to Him in a manger. Jesus is very special because He is both like God and like us (human).
Jesus was a child once, just like you! The Bible says in Luke 2:52, "And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man." Jesus grew up and at the age of 30, He gathered 12 men to be His disciples, or students, and travel around with Him. Together, they spoke about God's love and performed miracles.
Some people did not agree with what Jesus said and got very angry with Him. One of His disciples betrayed Jesus and handed Him over to the Roman government. Jesus was sentenced to death on a cross and was buried in a tomb. But...3 days later He rose from the dead! Jesus is not dead anymore, He is alive! After meeting with His disciples, He went back to heaven to prepare it for all of us to join Him.
Why did Jesus come to earth to die?
John 3:16 says "For God so loved the world that he gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life." God knew that His people were sinful and the only way to fix the broken relationship was to sacrifice His son. Jesus willingly left heaven to become a human like you and me. He was tempted like we are and He endured pain and suffering like we do, but Jesus never once sinned. Because He was perfect, He became the perfect sacrifice. His death paid the price for everyone's sin. God said that anyone who believes in Jesus's sacrifice will join Him one day in heaven.
Here are a few follow up questions you can ask your kids about Jesus. These are great conversation starters! I included my daughter's responses below :)
- Who is Jesus?
- He's the son of God!
- Jesus was born in manger. What do you think that would have been like?
- I think that Mary was laying on a stack of hay, then the baby came out, and Joseph helped her. And baby Jesus was sleeping on the hay stack.
- Did you know Jesus was once a kid, just like you? What do you think Jesus liked to play with as a kid?
- The sheep, and the cat, and the cow. (Do you think he played any games?) There were no games back then!
- Why do you think Jesus died for us?
- He wanted to forgive all of our sins because He didn't want us to die. He wanted to save us so we could live in heaven with Jesus and God.
An ongoing discussion about growing up, passing on, and the ties that bind us together. Following Jesus is a family affair — no matter who you call your family.