1. LESSON

  •  We’ve been looking at some of the books of the Bible that Solomon wrote:
    • Song of Solomon 
    • Proverbs
    • Ecclesiastes
    • Let’s see what you can remember from it:
      <use pix to associate each book>
       

      • Song of Solomon
      • Who were the 2 main characters?
        The Shulamite girl and the shepherd/King Solomon
      • How did the Shulamite see herself?
        Dark skinned, unwanted by her own family
      • How did Solomon see the Shulamite girl?
        Fair, beautiful, flawless in every way >> God sees us the same way
      • How did the Shulamite girl see Solomon?
        Attractive and full of love >> Picture of Jesus
      • Key lesson: In Song of Solomon, we are reminded that God sees us as beautiful; We see Jesus as beautiful!

    • Proverbs
      • What’s a proverb?
        Wise sayings about life
      • Who wrote Proverbs?
        Solomon: the wisest man in the world
      • What is the main theme from the book of Proverbs?
        Wisdom: to learn to become wise, make right choices, live life of peace/prosperity, avoid bad mistakes etc
      • Who is our Wisdom?
        Jesus is our Wisdom
      • Who teaches us to live wisely?
        The Holy Spirit
      • Key lesson: In Proverbs, we are reminded to Choose Wisdom, Choose Jesus!
      • Revise Proverbs 3:5-6 Trust in the Lord with all your heartand lean not on your own understanding;in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.
 
    • Ecclesiastes
 
      • What does Ecclesiastes mean?
        Teacher/Preacher
      • What’s the main word found in Ecclesiastes?
        “Meaningless” — at the end of his life, Solomon found the pursuit of pleasure, wisdom, work and wealth all meaningless
         
      • Solomon’s life didn’t end well because he started to worship other gods, introduced by his many wives. How many wives/concubines did he have? 1,000!! (700 wives — wives of royal birth — and 300 concubines)
      • Solomon said there was “nothing new under the sun”. Who then should we look to for meaning in life?
        The SON: Jesus — who came to make all things, including us, NEW!
      • Revise John 6:29: Jesus answered, “The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent.”
      • Key lesson: In Ecclesiastes, we are reminded that for true meaning in life, Don’t look under the sun. Look to the SON!
  • REVIEW:
    Flash the 3 photos one by one (in random order). Each time, kids should say out the key lesson of that book. Repeat until most kids get it.

    • Song of Solomon: God sees us as beautiful; we see Jesus as beautiful!
    • Proverbs: Choose Wisdom, Choose Jesus!
    • Ecclesiastes:  Don’t look under the sun. Look to the SON!

 

Overview of Ecclesiastes: Look to the Son!

Categories: Children's Church

1. HOOK: Blow wind blow game

  • We played the game “Blow, wind, blow” just now. Have you ever tried chasing after the wind? You can run all you want, jump all you want, tire yourself out completely, but you won’t be able to catch the wind. The wind blows here and there. You cannot get hold of it. 
  • Sometimes we all live our lives trying as if we’re chasing the wind. We chase after pleasure. We chase after knowledge. We chase after wealth and riches. But in the end we are empty. 
  • There’s one person who fills us up completely. We don’t have to run around to chase after Him. Because He was the one who came to look for us and to save us. Who is that person? Jesus!

 

2. LESSON: Overview of Ecclesiastes: Look to the Son!

  • We’ve been looking at some of the books of the Bible that Solomon wrote: 
    • Song of Solomon: God sees us as beautiful; We see Jesus as beautiful!
    • Proverbs: Jesus is our Wisdom
  • Today we take a look at Solomon’s 3rd book — Ecclesiastes
    • <help kids to pronounce … E-clee-sias-tis> 
    • Ecclesiastes means “teacher” or “preacher” 
    • Solomon (son of David, king in Jerusalem) probably wrote this book near the end of his life, when he was an old man.
  • Ecclesiastes: reflection of Solomon’s life 
    • The theme of the book can be summed up in one word: “Meaningless”
    • Solomon writes, 
      • “Meaningless! Meaningless! Utterly meaningless! Everything is meaningless.” (1:2)
      • All things are wearisome, more than one can say.(1:8) 
      • There is nothing new under the sun. (1:9)

    • He described life as trying to chase after the wind!
    • Why would Solomon write something like this?
    • Solomon had everything in this world that anyone could hope for. He had wisdom from God. He had pleasure, riches, achievements (the big beautiful temple) and lots of possessions.
    • Although he was so wise and rich, he made some wrong decisions in life, and things didn’t go too well for him by the end of his life.
    • Solomon was a very successful king, but he married many, many foreign wives — he had 1,000!! (700 wives — wives of royal birth — and 300 concubines)
    • These wives did not know the true God. They led King Solomon to worship false gods/idols. Instead of trusting on God with all his heart, Solomon turned away from the true God.
    • 1 Kings 11:4-6 “For it came to pass, when Solomon was old, that his wives turned away his heart after other gods: and his heart was not perfect with the Lord his God, as was the heart of David his father. For Solomon went after Ashtoreth the goddess of the Zidonians, and after Milcom the abomination of the Ammonites. And Solomon did evil in the sight of the Lord, and went not fully after the Lord, as did David his father.”
    • God told Solomon that because he turned away from Him, Solomon’s glorious and famous kingdom would be divided up after his death.  
    • Such a sad end for a king who had everything “under the sun”.  

 

  • Meaningless! Meaningless!
    • As Solomon wrote in Ecclesiastes, the things of this world alone do not bring real lasting satisfaction. They are all “Meaningless! Meaningless!”
    • Pleasurewas meaningless: 
      • “I denied myself nothing my eyes desired; I refused my heart no pleasure.” (2:10)
    • Wisdom was meaningless: 
      • “Like the fool, the wise too must die!” (2:16)
      • “All their days their work is grief and pain; even at night their minds do not rest. This too is meaningless.” (2:23)
  • Wealthwas meaningless: 
    • “Whoever loves money never has enough; whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with their income. This too is meaningless.”(5:10)
    • All these things that Solomon mentioned are good things. But by themselves, they do not bring satisfaction or fulfilment.
    • To Solomon, the man with everything, life “under the sun” had no meaning or hope.
  • Look to the SON: Jesus our Meaning in Life 
    • Solomon concluded Ecclesiastes with “Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion of the matter: Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man.” (12:13)
    • Under the Old Covenant, that was man’s duty. To fulfil God’s law.
    • But man failed over and over again.
    • Solomon, with all His wisdom and power, failed miserably.
    • Only the One greater than Solomon could fulfil the entire Law and keep ALL God’s commandments. That man is Jesus!
  • Don’t look “under the sun”. Look to the SON!
    • Solomon said that there is nothing new under the sun.
    • But Jesus, the SON of God, is not of this world! He’s not from “under the sun”. But He came down from heaven to give us hope and to give us life. 
    • Jesus came to give us the New Covenant through His death on the cross and resurrection. 
    • When we believe in Him, we are made newin Him. “If anyone is in Christ, he is a newcreature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.” 2 Corinthians 5:17
    • In Christ, we have true meaning in life!
  • Conclusion 
    • So what then is the whole duty of man today? Believe in Jesus! 
      • Then they asked him, “What must we do to do the works God requires?” Jesus answered, “The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent.” (John 6:28-29)
      • And this is his command: to believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ, and to love one another as he commanded us. (1 John 3:23)
    • Jesus is our meaning in life. When we believe in His finished work on the cross, His life lives in us and through us and we experience His abundant life! (John 10:10)


3. ACTIVITY SUGGESTIONS:

  • Memory Verse: John 6:29 Jesus answered, “The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent.” 
  • Sharing & prayer

Overview of Proverbs: Jesus our Wisdom

Categories: Children's Church

1. Lesson: Overview of Proverbs: Jesus our Wisdom

  • Besides building the Temple of God, King Solomon wrote several poetry books in the Bible.
  • Last week, we learnt about one of them — Song of Solomon.
    • What did we learn? God sees us as beautiful; We see Jesus as beautiful!
  • Today, we will look at another book — Proverbs. 
  • What’s a proverb?
    • Proverbs are wise sayings about life to help people live right and make wise choices.
    • The world is full of wise sayings/proverbs that we can learn from.
    • E.g.
      • Practise makes perfect: If we practise something over and over again, we will be very good at it. 
      • Honesty is the best policy: We should always tell the truth 
      • Slow and steady wins the race: We don’t have to be the fastest all the time, but if we hang in there, we will surely succeed; like the tortoise who was racing with the rabbit and didn’t give up. 

  •  Wise Sayings of a Wise Man 
    • If you remember, King Solomon was the wisest man in the world. When God asked Solomon what he wanted, Solomon did not ask for riches or fame or long life. Instead he asked for wisdom.
    • Being a wise man, Solomon wrote many wise sayings/proverbs, about 3,000, which make up most of the book of Proverbs.

     



  • Purpose of Proverbs (1:1-7)
    • The proverbs of Solomon son of David, king of Israel:
      for gaining wisdom and instruction;

      for understanding words of insight;

      for receiving instruction in prudent behavior,

      doing what is right and just and fair;
      for giving prudence to those who are simple,

      knowledgeand discretion to the young—
      let the wise listen and add to their learning,

      and let the discerning get guidance—
      for understanding proverbs and parables,

      the sayings and riddles of the wise.
      The fear of the
      Lord is the beginning of knowledge,
      but fools despise wisdom and instruction.
    • The main theme of the book of Proverbs was on the importance of WISDOM.
    • Solomon wrote the proverbs to share wisdom and insight, so that people could
      • learn and grow into wise people like him
      • make right choices and live a life of peace and prosperity 
      • avoid destructive mistakes 
      • live peacefully with others in this world
    • Solomon also acknowledged that the source of wisdom is God — The fear (worship) of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.

 

  • Picture of Wisdom (3:13-18) 
    • There are many, many pictures of wisdom in the book of Proverbs. For example:
    • Blessed are those who find wisdom,
      those who gain understanding,
      14 
      for she is more profitable than silver

      and yields better returns than gold.
      15 
      She is more precious than rubies;

      nothing you desire can compare with her.
      16 
      Long life is in her right hand;

      in her left hand are riches and honor.
      17 
      Her ways are pleasant ways,

      and all her paths are peace.
      18 
      She is a tree of life to those who take hold of her;

      those who hold her fast will be blessed.

    • Wisdomis described as: 
      • Better/more precious than silver, gold and rubies 
        • Solomon chose wisdom from God over silver, gold and rubies because he believed it was more important than all these
        • Source of long life, riches and honour

        • If we have God’s wisdom, we can make wise decisions that result in blessings of long life, riches and honour, just like Solomon
      • Pleasant and Peaceful 
        • God’s ways bring peace to us and all around us. Sometimes when we try to do things our own way or in our own wisdom, it causes strife and disunity among others. But we can ask God for wisdom to do things peacefully in every way. 

      • A Tree of Life and blessing 
        • Wisdom from God is the source of life and blessings to us, and we should hold on tight to it

 

 

  • Jesus our Wisdom 
    • Since wisdom is so good, how do we get this wisdom that Solomon talks about?
    • Solomon was the wisest man in the world. He wrote many wise things. Yet, at the end of his life, he didn’t follow the wisdom God gave him. He had many foreign wives who led him to worship other gods. As a result, his kingdom was divided after his death.
    • Who then is the true wise man?
      • A thousand years after Solomon, the Bible tells us that one greater than Solomon is here! (Luke 11:31)
    • His name is Jesus!
    • Jesus IS Wisdom from God 
      • In Christ, you find all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge (Col 2:3).
      • 1 Cor 1:30 It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God—that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption.
    • Jesus is the perfectly wise man who lived a perfect life to the very end.
      • Even as a young boy at 12 years old, Jesus was discussing with the teachers of the law in the temple. “Everyone who heard him was amazed at his understanding and his answers.” (Luke 2:41-50)
      • “And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men.” (Luke 2:52)  
      • When Pharisees and Sadducees tried to trick Him, Jesus always found a way to turn the tables on them.
      • In all He taught and all He did, Jesus led a life of wisdom.
      • Jesus was never lazy, never one-sided, never gossiped or lied. He lived out every proverb perfectly. His obedience and perfect life was deserving of every blessing of God. He should life a long life full of riches and honor, peace and blessings.
      • YET, he was punished instead. Not for His sins and mistakes. But for ours. So that we need not be punished by death for our sins (Prov 16:5).
      • And when Jesus rose from the dead, He gave all of us His righteousness so that we have all the life and blessings He deserved.
    • Choose Jesus, choose wisdom, choose life 
      • In Proverbs, Solomon keeps urging us to choose wisdom.
      • So if Jesus = Wisdom = Life
      • When we choose Jesus, we are choosing His wisdom and His eternal life. Jesus is our Tree of Life!
    • Live wisely
      • How do we live wisely? While there are many good lessons we can learn from the book of Proverbs, we don’t have to follow the instructions like a recipe book. Just like we don’t have to follow the 10 Commandments to live a godly life.
      • Before He returned to heaven, Jesus promised his disciples (and us) to send us His Holy Spirit. Today, we have the Holy Spirit in us. He is our guide and our counsellor. And He will teach us what to do in the different situations and circumstances we may face.
      • He will teach us what to say. “For I will give you words and wisdom that none of your adversaries will be able to resist or contradict.” (Luke 21:15).
      • He will tell us what to do. “If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him.” (James 1:5)
  • Conclusion: 
    • Because of Jesus’ finished work on the cross, Wisdom is a gift for every one of us.
    • As we abide/live in Christ and Christ in us, we grow in wisdom through our relationship and dependence on Him. His Holy Spirit transforms us more and more into the image of the one true wise man, Jesus.  
    • The more we trust and depend on Christ, the more we will display his wisdom in each and every situation.  
    • So … choose Jesus, choose wisdom, choose life! 

  • Memory Verse: Proverbs 3:5-6
    Trust in the Lord with all your heart
    and lean not on your own understanding;
    in all your ways submit to him,

    and he will make your paths straight.


2. Suggested activities:

  • Worksheet

 
 

Overview of Song of Solomon: You are beautiful

Categories: Children's Church

1. LESSON (based on Song of Solomon)

    • HOOK: 

    • Ever heard couples who are very much in love talk about each other? What do you think they talk about? 
    • “He is the most wonderful guy I ever met!” “She is the most beautiful girl in the world!”
    • Show examples of people in love, e.g.:
o   Nick Vujicic on his wife Kanae Miyahara: “She has the most beautiful, wise, and warm eyes I’d ever seen. I couldn’t take my eyes off her. She is enchanting, confident and kindhearted”.
  • God loves us so much that he uses so many examples of close human relationships to show us His love for us and tell us what He thinks of us. 
    • Father and Son: Remember the son who left the father after getting his share of the father’s money? He ran away, spent all the money , finally came back home to his father who still loved him despite what he had done and welcomed him back as his son. 
    • A friend: Jesus calls us his friends (John 15:13-14) – Jesus is our true friend who loved us so much that he laid down his life for us. 
    • A husband and a wife: This is one of the closest relationships which we have on this earth. A husband and a wife have covenantal relationship, just like what God has with us. God wants us to know that our relationship with him is also like a husband and a wife because it is a very close relationship. God also uses the picture a bridegroom and his bride — just like Christ is the bridegroom, and we, the church, are His bride.
  • King Solomon wrote a book called the Song of Solomon or the Song of Songs. This book is unlike any other book in the bible. It’s a special love story of a man and his bride.
  • Here King Solomon appears as a young shepherd, falls in love with a Shulamite girl. He promises to marry her on his return. When he returns, much to her surprise, he appears as a king and takes her back to Jerusalem to be his bride.
  • Throughout the book, Solomon talks about the girl, how beautiful she is; and she talks about Solomon, how beautiful he is.

  • He calls her beautiful. 
    • The Shulamite girl was a beautiful lady. However she was also abused and bullied by her brothers who forced us to work in the vineyards. She worked in the fields every day under the sun. After being under the hot sun every day, her skin became dark and tanned. As a result, she was self-conscious of her appearance.
    • Don’t stare at me because I am dark —
      the sun has darkened my skin.
      My brothers were angry with me;
      they forced me to care for their vineyards,
      So I couldn’t care for myself — my own vineyard.
      Song of Solomon 1:6
    • However, her beloved lover (Solomon) thought otherwise. “You are altogether beautiful, my darling, beautiful in every way. (Song of Solomon 4:7) 
    • Solomon calls her beautiful and lovely over and over again — the “fairest among women”, “all beautiful” and flawless.” “There is no flaw in you”. (Songs 1:8, 15, 4:7,9) 
    • Despite her insecurity and imperfections, Solomon deems her worthy of his love. He praises and recognizes her beauty and character. He compares her to a lily among thorns. To him, she is beautiful beyond words. The Shulamite woman captivated his heart. He invites her to rise up and go away with Him. 
    •  Solomon paints for us a picture of how God sees us, His precious love.   
    • God loves us, saves us and blesses us whatever our imperfections may be. Whether our nose is too long, our hair too frizzy or our head is too big. Or whether you think you are not smart enough or good enough. Or maybe you have a bad temper, or are clumsy or lazy. Or maybe you’ve been abused or bullied by others who make you feel small and worthless. 
    • The truth is: God has loved you from before you were in your mother’s womb. He loved you as He formed you and knit you together. He loved you when you were born. He knows your coming and going and is intimately acquainted with all your ways. He knows every word you are about to say and every thought in your mind. He sees and knows the pain, the hurt and the tears you cry. He knows all the naughty things you’ve done or are going to do. He knows that you are not perfect and yet He still loves you. He has loved you and will forever love all of you despite your insecurities and imperfections.
    • In fact, when we were at our ugliest, Christ came to die for us and give His life and love to us. He rose from the dead, and His life and beauty shines in us and through us.
    • God looks at us today and tells us: You are altogether beautiful, my darling, beautiful in every way, and there is no spot in you.
    • Our value lies in being wholly and dearly loved by God. We cannot earn God’s approval — we already have it. No amount of striving, accomplishments, or external beauty can make you more valuable or loved in the eyes of your Lord.
    • To God, you are beautiful beyond words. You have captivated His heart. And He invites you to rise up and go away with Him.
  • She calls him beautiful 
    • The Shulamite woman also gives an elaborate description of her lover and how lovely he is. 
    • What can Song of Solomon tell us about Jesus? 
      • Jesus is our Bridegroom and our Shepherd King 
      • Jesus is attractive and altogether lovely
        (example SOS 5:10-16; there are many others too)
        • My beloved is radiant:  Jesus is completely pure and holy and glorious 
        • He is outstanding among ten thousand 
        • His head is purest gold: Gold symbolises Jesus’ eternal kingship.   
        • His hair is wavy and black as a raven: symbolizes youth and health — blessings from God.  
        • His eyes are like doves: He has compassion for us, is wise and discerning, pure and clean.  
        • His lips are like lilies, dripping with myrrh: The words He speaks are pure and pleasing and bring healing to our wounds.
      • Jesus ‘s banner over us is love (SOS 2:4)
        • The Shepherd covers the Shulamite woman with love. 
        • Picture a great banqueting house filled with distinguished guests, and above his bride’s place is a banner for all to see. And upon the banner is written the word “love”.
        • Similarly, Jesus loves His Church, His bride, so much that He gave Himself for her and shed His precious blood for her. 
        • One day, He will bring us into His banqueting house, and He will sit us down in the best seat that He has prepared for us. And above our seat will be His banner of love.
      • Jesus calls us away with Him (SOS 2:10-13)
        • Just like the Shulamite woman’s lover calls her away with him, our bridegroom Jesus calls us with Him too. 
        • He loves us so much that He wants to spend time with us. Whether it’s to chat (pray) or to sing songs (worship) or to read His love letters to us (word) just to enjoy what He has prepared for us.  
        • And He’s coming back one day to bring us to stay with Him forever.
    • After the Shulamite woman starts telling others about Solomon, how wonderful he is, her friends want to look for him too. (Songs 6:1) When we tell people about how wonderful Jesus is, they would want to know Him too.
  • Today, we’ve learnt that:
    • Jesus sees us as lovely: 
      •  Sometimes we may think we are not good in many areas of our life and feel sad about it. We should see ourselves as Jesus sees us — lovely and righteous — not as how we see ourselves nor how the world sees us. 
    • See Jesus as lovely:  
      • Jesus is altogether lovely, wonderful, beautiful and radiant. He covers us with His unconditional banner of love. As we fix our eyes on Jesus, the Bible tells us that “those who look to him are radiant” too (Psalm 34:5) — transformed by His glory. When we see him as lovely, we can’t help but tell others how wonderful He is. When we do that, others will want to know Jesus too.
2. ACTIVITY SUGGESTIONS

A Walk-through Solomon’s Temple

Categories: Children's Church

LESSON: A Walk-through Solomon’s Temple (1 Kings 7, 2 Chron 4)

  • Set up room according to the following layout
  • Prepare kids outside the room:
    • Today, we’re going to take a special tour of the temple of God that King Solomon built.
    • Let’s walk slowly and very quietly so we can see all the different things inside.
    • Note: Depending on crowd control, you may choose to have all the kids sit down in the “outer court area” while you talk about different parts of the temple, or have them follow you
  • Conclusion:
    • Today, because of Jesus’ death and life, we are brought near to God.
    • We are washed so clean and made righteous so that God’s Holy Spirit can live in us forever.
    • Thank you Jesus for dying on the cross for me. Thank you for taking away all my sins and washing me clean with your blood. Thank you for your broken body that makes me whole. That you that because of you, I can come to God freely and boldly in your name. I accept you into my heart and my life; live your life in me and through me. In Jesus’ name, Amen!

View of set-up room

1.         Lesson: The Temple’s Furnishings (1 Kings 7, 2 Chron 4)
  • Last week, we learnt about how Solomon built a temple to God. It was built:
    • with the best materials and by the best craftsmen
    • as God’s house where God’s people could come to pray and receive forgiveness of their sins 
  • We also learned that the temple was temporary … a picture of who us today — we are the temple of the Holy Spirit, and that God lives in us forever!
  • The layout and furnishing of the temple is similar to the tabernacle that the Israelites used to worship God in since they came out of Egypt. (Exodus 25-27). The temple was about double the size of the tabernacle, and some of the furnishing were multiplied (10x).
  • Everything about the temple — layout and furnishings — are made according to perfect specifications because it serves as “a copy and shadow of what is in heaven”. (Heb 8:5)
  • Today we will looks at some of the furnishings in the temple and see how they are a picture of Jesus and His finished work on the cross.

  • The temple:
    • Outside of the temple:
      • Altar of Burnt Offering/Brazen altar
      • Brazen sea
      • 10 lavers
    • The porch (portico/vestibule)
    • The Holy Place/Greater House/temple
      • 10 tables of Showbread
      • 10 Golden Lampstands
      • Altar of incense 
    • The inner sanctuary, the “Holy of Holies”
      • Ark of the Covenant
1.         Outside the temple/Courtyard 
a.     Altar of Burnt Offering/Brazen Altar
  • Made of acacia wood and overlaid with bronze (symbol of God’s judgment against sin)
  • God asked Israelites to make it as part of their worship in the desert (Exodus 27:1-8)
  • This was where the Israelites would offer their burnt animal offerings to God for their sins year after year.
  • Animal blood would be spilled on the altar to atone (cover up) their sins.
  • Picture of Jesus: 
    • Jesus was the perfect offering to God who shed His blood for our sins. The animals’ blood could only cover up our sins, but Jesus’ blood takes away/removes all our sins (John 1:29).
    • Just as the altar was located outside the temple, Christ died outside of the camp as a sacrifice once and for all.

b. Brazen Sea & 10 Lavers/Bowls 

  •  Every priest had to wash his hands and feet before entering the place of worship or risk being struck dead. (Exodus 30:17-21)
  • At the tabernacle, they used a small laver made of the women’s hand mirrors. But Solomon built a large Brazen Sea for the priests to wash themselves outside the temple.
  • The Brazen Sea was a large bronze basin about 15 feet in diameter and over 7.5 feet high (higher than our mommies and daddies). It rested on the backs of 12 bronze oxen.
  • There were 10 bronze lavers/bowls along the sides of the temple. These were wash basins to rinse the items used for burnt sacrifices.
  • Picture of Jesus: 
    • The priests could not approach God’s presence without washing themselves. Today, Jesus’ He washes us clean. So we can enter God’s presence boldly and with confidence. 
    • “Let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled [with blood] to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water.” (Hebrews 10:22)

2.       The Holy Place
c.       The 10 Tables of Showbread (Sacred bread)

  • Small tables made of acacia wood and overlaid with pure gold. 
  • The Table of Showbread (or Bread of the Presence) was set at all times just as a king’s table is always set and prepared for his arrival. 
  • The Lord commanded that on this table there were to be 12 loaves of bread (representing the 12 tribes of Israel) displayed in two rows of six each (In Solomon’s temple, total number of loaves = 12 x 10 = 120). 
  • They were to be made with the finest flour; they were to be flat (or unleavened) and eaten by the priests only, and only in the Holy Place. The priest would put the bread on the table for a week, then eat it on the Sabbath in the Holy Place and replace it with fresh bread. (Lev 24:5-8)
  • The bread was a reminder of God’s provision of manna for the 12 tribes of Israel throughout their 40-year journey in the desert.
  • The Showbread is also called the “Bread of the Presence” because it was always in the Lord’s presence. The table and the bread are a picture of God’s desire to fellowship and commune with man — an invitation to share a meal together. (Rev 3:20) 
  • Picture of Jesus:
    • Jesus says He is the bread of life (John 6:35). The manna and physical bread can only sustain our physical life; but the Bread of Life gives us eternal life in Christ.
    • Before He died, Jesus took bread, broke it and gave it to His disciples saying “Take and eat; this is my body.” (Matt 26:26)
    • On the cross, Jesus’ body was broken so that you and I can be made whole and be brought near to God and have communion/fellowship with Him.
    • Every time we take the Holy Communion, we are reminded of Jesus’ broken body on the cross.

d.      The 10 Lampstands

  •   Had to be always lit/kept burning by the priests (Exodus 27:20-21) 
  • Provided  light in tabernacle/temple — a reminder to the Israelites that God provided light (pillar of fire) when they travelled through the desert for 40 years (Exodus 13:20-21)
  • Picture of Jesus:
    • Jesus is the light of the world — the true light that gives light to every man (John 1:9)
    • Jesus promised that when we follow Him, we will “never walk in darkness but will have the light of life”. (John 8:12) We also reflect Jesus’ light to the world.

e.      Altar of Incense

  • Every morning and evening, the priest was to burn incense upon this altar, filling the air with the sweet aroma of the incense. Symbolising the prayers/intercession of God’s people rising up to God’s throne. 
  • Picture of Jesus:
    • Jesus is at the right hand of the Father interceding for us (Romans 8:34)
    • Because of Jesus’ finished work on the cross, we can pray from a position of victory today — not begging God but thanking Him for what He has already done for us!

f.        Veil

  • Curtain of blue, purple and scarlet yarn and finely twisted linen, with cherubims worked into it. Placed between the Holy Place and the Most Holy Place/Holy of Holies. 
  • The Holy of Holies was so holy that only the High Priest was allowed to enter into it. Once a year on the tenth day of the seventh month, the Day of Atonement, the High Priest was permitted to pass through the veil and enter into the presence of God. This was the time when the High Priest sought the Mercy of God and made atonement for his sins and the sins of the people of Israel.  
  • The Veil symbolises the separation between a Holy God and unholy man. Man could not simply enter God’s presence or they could fall down dead.
  • Picture of Jesus: 
    • When Jesus died on the cross, the tall, thick veil in the temple (of his time) was miraculously torn in two, from top to bottom (Matt 27:50-51).
    • The torn veil illustrated Jesus’ body broken for us, opening the way for us to come to God. As Jesus cried out “It is finished!” on the cross, He was indeed proclaiming that God’s redemptive plan was now complete. The age of animal offerings was over. The ultimate offering had been sacrificed. 
    • Because of Jesus, we can enter God’s presence boldly and confidently through Christ (Heb 10:19-20) — no more separation!

3.       The Holy of Holies

g.       Ark of the Covenant

  • Made of acacia wood and overlaid with pure gold, inside and out. To be carried by poles at the sides of the ark only by the Levites — too holy to be touched
  • Inside the Ark: Tablets of 10 Commandments — Reminders of man’s rebellion (golden calf) 
  • Covering on top of the ark
    • Has 2 cherubims on both ends of the cover, facing each other, with wings spread upward overshadowing the cover
    • The presence of God rested between the cherubims — no one allowed to look directly on the Atonement Cover
    • The High Priest sprinkles sacrificial blood on the Atonement Cover on the Day of Atonement (Lev 16:11-17) so that God will not punish the people for their sins. No one could enter the Holy of Holies without the shedding of blood. (Heb 9:7)
  • Beautiful picture of God’s mercy and forgiveness over man’s rebellion and sin. 
  • Picture of Jesus:
    • Jesus is our High Priest who entered the Holy of Holies with His own shed blood. (Heb 9:11-12)
    • Jesus is our mercy seat. He stands between a holy God and sinful man. Just as the sins of the whole nation were atoned for by the sprinkling of the blood on the mercy seat, Christ’s blood atoned for the sins of the entire world.
    • Romans 3:23-26 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. 25 God presented Christ as a sacrifice of atonement (mercy seat), through the shedding of his blood—to be received by faith. He did this to demonstrate his righteousness, because in his forbearance he had left the sins committed beforehand unpunished— 26 he did it to demonstrate his righteousness at the present time, so as to be just and the one who justifies those who have faith in Jesus.
  • Conclusion:
    • Solomon built a beautiful temple for God. It was a grand place of worship, sacrifice and prayer.
    • But the grand temple was just a picture and shadow for the Israelites. It was an image of heaven, of God’s redemption plan. It told a story of how we cannot go to God on our own because of sin, but God, in His grace and mercy, came to open the way and bring us back to Him through Jesus’ finished work on the cross. 
    • If you would like to accept Jesus’ finished work on the cross and His life in you, pray along with me:
      • Thank you Jesus for dying on the cross for me. Thank you for taking away all my sins and washing me clean with your blood. Thank you for your broken body that makes me whole. That you that because of you, I can come to God freely and boldly in your name. I accept you into my heart and my life; live your life in me and through me. In Jesus’ name, Amen!

2. Worksheets

 

Solomon builds a Temple

Categories: Children's Church

1. STORY: Solomon’s Temple (1 Kings 5-9)

  • King David wanted to build a physical temple for God. But God said his son, Solomon, would build it. So David could only make all the preparations for it and set aside all the wood, gold, silver, stone and treasures for the building.
  • After four peaceful years of reign as king, Solomon decided to start building the temple of God, as his father, David, had prepared him for. “You know that because of the wars waged against my father David from all sides, he could not build a temple for the Name of the Lordhis God until the Lord put his enemies under his feet. But now the Lordmy God has given me rest on every side, and there is no adversary or disaster. I intend, therefore, to build a temple for the Name of the Lord my God, as the Lord told my father David, when he said, ‘Your son whom I will put on the throne in your place will build the temple for my Name.’(1 Kings 5:3-5)
  • It took them seven years to complete the amazing temple. Solomon listened to God and built it exactly like God wanted. 
  • Let’s take a look at how the temple might have looked like: Virtual tour of temple.

  • The temple’s dimensions:
    •  About twice the size of the tabernacle (where the Ark of God was residing
    • cubit = about 18 inches; although some Bible scholars believe Solomon’s “cubit” was longer, ie 20 inches 
    • Length: 60 cubits 
    • Width: 20 cubits
    • Height: 30 cubits
  • The temple’s materials: 
    • Only the finest woods and materials were used
    • The best craftsmen, artists, bronze-smiths and sculptors; hundreds of thousands of labourers
    • Cedars of Lebanon
      • Solomon was wise to make treaty with Hiram, king of Tyre, for purchase of the best timber (1 Kings 5)
      • Lined the inside of temple — no stone was seen
    • Stone blocks
      • Stones were cut at the quarry; shaped so perfectly that they slotted together without being banged into place
      • No hammer, chisel or any other iron tool was heard at the temple site while it was being built.
    • Gold 
      • The interior and altar of the Holy of Holies were overlaid with pure gold
      • The wooden doors were covered in gold 
      • Gold furnishings: table of bread, 10 lampstands, flowers, lamps, tongs, 100 bowls etc (1 Kings 7:48-50) 
    • Bronze 
      • By wise and skilful master craftsman named Huram
      • Huram cast two bronze columns/pillars for the entrance of the temple; the two bowl-shaped capitals on top of the columns, with its decorative features (400 bronze pomegranates); 10 lavers — stands with basins; a Bronze Sea (a large round tank supported by 12 bronze bulls); as well as pots, shovels, sprinkling bowls etc
    • The temple’s layout:

    • The temple was rectangular and had 3 main areas or rooms (similar to the tabernacle):
    • The porch (portico/vestibule) 
      • 10 cubits from the front of the temple 
      • Has 2 big pillars
    • The Holy Place/Greater House/temple
      • where the priests and worship leaders could enter to worship God 
    • The inner sanctuary, the “Holy of Holies”
      • Considered the place God lived — where the ark of the covenant (the “throne” of God) was laid
      • The special holy room was lined with beautiful wood with gold over it. 
      • There were also cherubims — carved angels overlaid with gold, standing 10 cubits high each, with each wing 5 cubits long. 
      • Separated from the Holy Place by a two-leaved door and a thick curtain/veil of blue purple and crimson and fine linen (2 Chr 3:14)
      • Only the High Priest could enter once a year (on the Day of Atonement)
    • Chambers/rooms built around the temple 
    • Outside the temple:
      • Court of the priests/inner court
        • Altar of burnt-offering
        • Brazen sea 
        • 10 lavers
      •  Great court
        • Where the people assembled to worship God with prayer and sacrifice 
  • The temple’s dedication: 
    • After the temple was built, Solomon asked the priests to come to dedicate the temple to God. 
    • The priests brought the special box called the Ark of the Covenant, which represented God’s presence/throne. 
    • When the box was placed in the Holy of Holies, a big cloud filled the temple and the people knew the Lord was very close to them.
    • Solomon rejoiced that God’s presence was there. They praised the Lord and thanked Him for keeping His promise to His people.Solomon kneeled before the altar and prayed to God. “God, thank You that I was able to build this temple for You. Thank You that my father David planned it. But even this temple is not good enough. No place is big or high enough for You. You made the earth and the sky. Please, Lord, let this temple be a place where we can always find You.” (1 Kings 8)
    •  After Solomon prayed, fire from heaven came down and burnt the offerings and sacrifices, and God’s glory filled the temple. (2 Chron 7) 
    • The people who saw this praised God, “He is good; his love endures forever.”
    • Solomon then sacrificed an enormous fellowship offering — 22,000 oxen and 120,000 sheep (that’s a LOT of cows and sheep!!), as well as burnt, grain offerings. The Israelites celebrated the temple’s dedication for 14 days before heading back home. 
    • Afterwards God appeared to Solomon. He said. “If you do what I tell you, I will live in this temple. I will listen to the prayers of the people who come into this place.”  

S2

S4

 

2. LESSON:

  • Solomon’s temple was very grand and beautiful. It had the best of every material, built by the most skilled craftsman. 
  • Solomon built the temple as a house for God, even though He knew God could not be contained by a building (Isa 66:1-2). But the temple was a place that represented the presence of God in Israel and where God’s people could come to pray to Him and receive forgiveness of their sins.
  • Even then, the Israelites could only worship in the outer courts of the temple. Back in Solomon’s time, God was separated from His people because He was holy and man was sinful. The people would bring their offerings/sacrifice/requests to the priests, who would then take the offerings/sacrifices/requests to God. 
  • But when Jesus died on the cross, His blood washed away our sin and brought us near to God. We can now approach God boldly and confidently. (Heb 10:19-22)
  • But do you know what’s even better? God’s Spirit, which filled Solomon’s temple, now lives in us … forever. When we believe in Jesus, WE have the privilege of being His temple. Our bodies are His temple. His Holy Spirit comes and lives in us. forever.
  • As grand and glorious Solomon’s temple was, our bodies are even grander and more glorious — God’s spirit did leave Solomon’s temple eventually when the temple was destroyed, but God’s spirit lives in us forever and ever! 
  • Memory Verse: 1 Cor 3: 16, it says, “Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit lives in you?” Use activity/game to get kids to remember memory verse.

1. STORY:

    • HOOK: I wish I may, I wish I might … 
    • Imagine one day you were walking on a beach. And you accidentally kicked something hard. You looked down, and you see an old-fashioned gold lamp! Wow!
    • What would you do with it? Maybe we should rub it and see if anything happens … 1, 2, 3 Rub! 
    • Whoosh! It’s a great big green genie! “Hello boys and girls! Thank you for setting me free from the lamp! As a reward, I’ll give you one wish! Whatever it is that you want … ask and I shall grant you your wish!”
    • Wow! A wish! Whatever you want! 
    • What would you wish for children? What’s the one thing you want the most? <get kids to give their answers> 
    • Well, in real life, there’s no such thing as a genie in a bottle. But in the Bible, there’s somebody who was asked by God about what his wish was. That somebody was King Solomon. Let’s find out more. 
  • King David’s had a son, Solomon, who would be Israel’s next king. God loved him very much. (2 Sam 12:24)
  • Before he died, David instructed Solomon what he should do as king. “And you my son Solomon, acknowledge the God of your father, and serve him with wholehearted devotion and with a willing mind, for the LORD searches every heart and understands every motive behind the thoughts.  If you seek Him, He will be found by you; but if you forsake Him, He will reject you forever.” (1 Chronicles 28:9)
  • After King David died, his son Solomon became king over Israel. “Solomon showed his love for the LORD by walking according to the statues of his father David…” (1Kings 3:3a)
  • One night, Solomon offered 1,000 offerings to God at a place called Gibeon. As he was sleeping, God came to Solomon and spoke to him in a dream. “Ask for whatever you want me to give you.” 
  • Wow! Solomon could ask for ANYTHING he wanted. What would you ask for if God said, “Ask for whatever you want me to give you.”
  • If you were a king, wouldn’t you wish for great wealth? Long life? Many palaces? Or territories? For all your enemies to be gone?
  • Solomon praised God for His kindness to his father, David, and to him. Then he said, “Now, Lord my God, you have made your servant king in place of my father David. But I am only a little child and do not know how to carry out my duties. 8Your servant is here among the people you have chosen, a great people, too numerous to count or number. So give your servant a discerning heart to govern your people and to distinguish between right and wrong. For who is able to govern this great people of yours?”
  • What did Solomon ask God for? He asked for wisdom! As a young king, he knew that he could not rule a great nation like Israel by himself, no matter how clever he may be. He needed God’s wisdom.
  • God was pleased because Solomon knew that in order to be the kind of king that could lead God’s people he could only do it with God’s wisdom. “Since you have asked for this and not for long life or wealth for yourself, nor have asked for the death of your enemies but for discernment in administering justice, I will do what you have asked. I will give you a wise and discerning heart, so that there will never have been anyone like you, nor will there ever be.” 
  • But on top of the wisdom, God promised, I will give you what you have not asked for—both wealth and honor—so that in your lifetime you will have no equal among kings. And if you walk in obedience to me and keep my decrees and commands as David your father did, I will give you a long life.”
  • Can you believe that? Not only would God make Solomon the wisest king ever, He was going to give him lots of wealth and honour too!
  • Solomon’s Wise Ruling
    • Now Solomon had to deal with many cases and issues in his country.
    • One day, two women/prostitutes came to the king. They had a problem.
    • Both of them lived alone in the same house, and they each had a baby, born 3 days apart.
    • One of the women told Solomon, “During the night, this woman’s son died because she lay on him. So she got up in the middle of the night and took my son from my side while I was asleep. She put him by her breast and put her dead son by my breast. The next morning, I got up to nurse my son—and he was dead! But when I looked at him closely in the morning light, I saw that it wasn’t my son.” 
    • The other woman said, “No! The living one is my son; the dead one is yours.”
    • But the first one insisted, “No! The dead one is yours; the living one is mine.” And so they argued before the king.
    • Oh dear. What should Solomon do? He definitely needed God’s wisdom on this problem. 
    • Then the king said, “Bring me a sword.” So they brought a sword for the king. He then gave an order: “Cut the living child in two and give half to one and half to the other.”
    • Was Solomon crazy?!? But then, let’s see what happens: 
    • The woman whose son was alive was deeply moved out of love for her son and said to the king, “Please, my lord, give her the living baby! Don’t kill him!”
    • But the other said, “Neither I nor you shall have him. Cut him in two!” 
    • Then the king gave his ruling: “Give the living baby to the first woman. Do not kill him; she is his mother.”
    • When all Israel heard the verdict the king had given, they held the king in awe, because they saw that he had wisdom from God to administer justice.
 

2. Lesson:

  • Jesus is our wisdom 
    • Solomon asked God for wisdom, and God gave it to Him. He became the wisest man that ever lived. But Solomon is dead. 
    • And a thousand years later, the Bible tells us that one greater that Solomon is here! (Luke 11:31) Who’s this King who is greater than Solomon? Who’s this King who is wiser, and richer and more honoured than Solomon? It’s Jesus!
    • You and I would most likely never be a king as Solomon was.  And we may not think we are very wise.
    • However, all of us who believe in Jesus have God’s wisdom in us already!
    • In 1 Cor 1:30, the Bible tells us that even though we may not be great or wise or of noble birth, we belong to Jesus, who is our wisdom from God.
    • Whatever situation we may be in, whatever decisions we need to make, we can depend on this wisdom that we have in us, because Jesus lives in us forever!
  • We have access to the King 
    • The two mothers who came to Solomon were prostitutes. They were not very honourable women. They had many boyfriends. Society would look down on them.
    • Yet somehow, they were able to access the King of Israel!
    • Jesus came to die for all sorts of people — good people, bad people, people with a past etc. And when we accept Him as our Lord and Saviour, we have free access to Him always! (Heb 10:19)
  • How many of you know Jesus? How many of you have Jesus in your heart? If you do, know that He is your wisdom. He will help you in whatever problems you may face. You can go to Him anytime, any place, and He will help you.
  • If you do not know Jesus yet, but you want to invite Him into your heart, you can ask Him today! 
  • Let’s pray together: Lord Jesus, thank you for dying for me and forgiving me of my sins. Thank you for giving me Your life and living in my heart forever. Thank you that You are my wisdom always, and I can always come to You for everything I need. In Your name, I pray, Amen!

3. Suggested Activities: 

  • Share & Pray: What is one challenge or situation when you need God’s wisdom to help you? Share and pray for one another.
  •  Act it out: 
    • Get kids to act out the scene between Solomon and the 2 mothers.
    • You’d need: Solomon, 2 mothers, a baby (doll), 2 guards 
  • Close in prayer.

God promises David a Forever Kingdom

Categories: Children's Church

1. LESSON:

  • HOOK: God keeps His promises 
    • Write out some Scriptures of God’s promises (see appendix) and hide them around the room. (Can fold them into origami or in envelopes or behind cards, e.g. flower shapes etc. Or can be played as “pass the parcel” with a promise and a gift at each layer.)
    • Kids have to go hunt for the “treasure”. Then get them to come together and read out each of the promises one by one.
    • Conclusion: God has given us many promises, and He keeps all of them. Today we’re going to learn about a BIG promise God made to King David. It’s a promise that you and I can enjoy too!

 

 

  • STORY: (2 Samuel 7:1-15)
    • God gave David rest from his enemies. One day when he was sitting in his grand palace, he said to Nathan, the prophet: “I live in a grand house of cedar. But the Ark of God remains in a tent. Perhaps God would have me build Him a house.”
    • Although David wanted to build a temple for God, God said to Nathan, “I will make David a house; and his house, his kingdom, and his throne shall be established forever. I took David from tending the sheep to be the ruler over my people, over Israel; and was with him wherever he went, cut off his enemies, and made his name great.”
    • God also said, “When David’s days are over, I will set up his seed, or children, after him and I will establish his son’s kingdom and throne, and David’s son shall build a house for my name. 
    • What did God mean when He said to David, “I will set up your throne and your kingdom forever”? How long is forever? 
    • Now here is something very interesting so listen carefully and you will understand.
      • God said if David’s family would obey Him, their kingdom would continue.
      • He also said if they disobeyed, He would punish them.
    • Before David died, he told his son, Solomon, about the promise God gave him: “If you and your descendants watch how they live and walk faithfully before me with all their heart soul, you will never fail to have a successor on the throne of Israel.”(1 Kings 2:4) 
    • Some kings were good kings. But many were not. One by one would keep disobeying God by worshipping idols. Over and over again.
    • And each time God would punish them for their sin.
    • Eventually, the nation of Israel was divided into two — the northern and the southern kingdom. Enemy nations marched in and conquered them. The Assyrians drove out the northern kingdom and scattered the people all over. The Babylonians invaded the southern kingdom, and all of the people were captured and taken away out of the land, including their king. 
    • The amazing thing is how God protected David’s line through it all. For example, there was one time when the entire family was almost wiped out, but Joash was hidden by his aunt (2 Kings 11).
    • However, when the Israelites returned from Babylon, they no longer had a king on the throne. 
    • So what about God’s forever promise? Did God fail to keep his word?
    • Well, here is something wonderfully exciting!
    • About 400 years later, God sent an angel to bring a message to a young woman named Mary: “You shall give birth to a son. You shall call his name Jesus. He shall be great and shall be called “the Son of the Highest.” Now listen to these words! “And the Lord God shall give Jesus the throne of his father David. … He shall be king over the house of Israel forever.” (Luke 1:26-33) 
    • You see, Mary, the mother of the Lord Jesus, was from the family of David. David was one of her great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great … grandfather. So that made Jesus the great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great … grandson of King David.
    • Think for a moment, was the Lord Jesus ever crowned king by Pilate in Jerusalem? No. The only crown he wore was a crown of thorns. The Lord Jesus Christ, God’s only Son was nailed to a cross where He died. His body was placed in a garden tomb. So what about God’s “forever promise”?
    • Did the Lord Jesus remain in the grave? No! Up from the grave He arose, and He is living today in Heaven as the King of kings. By His death on the cross, He has conquered death and sin. And His rule will never end. (Luke 1:33, Phil. 2:11)
    • This is God’s forever promise to David come true. Truly He who promised is faithful. God keeps His promises always!

 

2. ACTIVITY SUGGESTIONS:

  • Memory Verse: 2 Sam 7:15-16, “But my love will never be taken away from him. Your house and your kingdom will endure forever before me; your throne will be established forever.’” 
  • for younger classes:  Your house and your kingdom will continue before me for all time, and your throne will be secure forever.” (NLT)
  • Close in prayer

 

APPENDIX: Examples of God’s Promises

  • God Promised to be with us always
    Joshua 1:9  Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.
  • God Promised to Protect Us
    2 Thessalonians 3:3  But the Lord is faithful, who shall establish you and keep you from evil.
  • Jesus Promised Us Rest
    Matthew 11:29 
    Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle, and you will find rest for your souls.
  • Jesus Promised He will come again for us
    John 14:2-3
      There are many rooms in my Father’s home, and I am going to prepare a place for you. When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am.
  • God Promised No More Condemnation
    Rom 8:1
      So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus.
  • God Promised to Help Us
    Isaiah 41:10  Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. I will strengthen you. I will help you.
  • Jesus Promised Us Peace
    John 14:27 
    I am leaving you with a gift — peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give isn’t like the peace the world gives. So don’t be troubled or afraid.
  • God Promised Us Healing
    Isaiah 53:5  
    By His stripes we are healed.
  • God Promised to Provide Us all we need
    2 Cor 9:8
      And God will generously provide all you need. Then you will always have everything you need and plenty left over to share with others.
  • God Promised us Life
    John 3:16  For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.