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Choose from the following children's sermons

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Making Jesus King,
a children's sermon based on the Triumphant Entrance
by  Rev. Frank Schaefer

props:  a number of little flags from your country; or, if you can find them, flags from different countries.

Share the story of Jesus riding into Jerusalem.

Explain to the children why the people in the crowd waved palm branches, viz. that the Palm branches were patriotic symbols.  Had they had flags in those days, they would have used them. In many  processions today we also see a lot of flags. 

Hand out the flags to some of the kids and ask them to wave the flags. The people wanted to make Jesus King and Ruler over their country, Israel.  Ask the kids whether they feel the same way as the people felt back then. Do they want to declare Jesus King over our country (or: if you use various flags, the world)?

The truth is that we cannot make Jesus King in our country or in the world today.  But we can claim our country (the world) for Jesus. We can declare today that Jesus is King in our hearts, and then we invite other people to do the same until the entire country makes Jesus king!  But it all starts with us today.

Prayer: "Dear King Jesus, we declare you King and Lord of the earth and over our lives.  We give you our heart and our soul.  Reign in our lives; be with us every day and love and protect us.  Thank you King Jesus!"

 


Following Jesus Every Day
a children's sermon for Palm Sunday 
by Rev. Frank Schaefer

Props: a fresh palm branch and a left-over branch from last year (if you don't have a leftover one, you may want to make one: take a fresh one and put it in an oven until it is brownish and dried up).

Good morning boys and girls.  And what a great morning it is. Palm Sunday is surely a great feast and a celebration in the church of Christ.. You know, on that first Palm Sunday people welcomed and praised Jesus just as we are this morning.  Only that they actually saw Jesus riding in on a donkey. We kind of have to imagine that. 

Wouldn't it be something if Jesus would ride in on a donkey right down the center isle of our sanctuary?  That'd be great!  We could wave our palm branches at Jesus, and shout: "Hosannah!" which is Hebrew for "Praise the Lord!" and we could put our coats out for Jesus, like the people did on that first Palm Sunday.

Today I brought two things with me (show both palm branches).  What are they?    That's right, I have two palm branches.  Are they exactly alike?   No?   What's the difference?  You're right, one is a fresh palm branch and the other one is old and dried up.  That's because this one (wave the fresh palm branch) is a fresh one and this one (wave the old palm branch) is one that we used a year ago.

And do you know why I brought a fresh palm branch and an old one?  Because we want to remember that the people cried "Hosannah" and waved palms on Palm Sunday and . . . only one week later, the same people turned away from Jesus and they pretended that they didn't know him when he was hung on a cross to die.

And we want to remember that we, too, turn away from Jesus at times.  You know, it is easy to follow Jesus on Sundays when we go to Sunday school and church, but what about during the week?  During the week we often forget Jesus, and sometimes we do things that are not Christian-like.

So the fresh palm branch can remind us that we should praise Jesus and the old palm branch can remind us that we should not be like the people who turned away from Jesus.   We need to follow Jesus not only on Sundays but  . . . all the time. And to do that we need God's help.  Let's pray that God will help us follow Jesus all the time.

Prayer: "Dear God, we thank you for Palm Sunday.  We thank you for giving us Jesus, who loves us so much.  Help us to follow Jesus every day of our lives, and not just on Sundays.  Thank you, Lord.  Amen.


Jesus and the Mule
a children's sermon based on Mark 11:1-11
by Rev. Frank Schaefer

props:  palm branches; a youth volunteer to be the donkey

Get one of the congregation's youth to act the part of a stubborn donkey. Ask the kids for a volunteer to act the part of Jesus riding triumphantly into Jerusalem (the youth is supposed to carry the kid volunteer on all fours on his/her back).  you may also ask for a kid volunteer to play the part of the young colt.  Hand out palm branches to the other children to wave at "Jesus" as he rides in.

Retell the story of the triumphant entry in your own words and invite the kids to act out this story.

Instruct the youth to act like a stubborn donkey (act like this is a spontaneous idea on the part of the youth--you may want to repeat in a somewhat raised, articulate voice: "And Jesus rode into Jerusalem on the donkey...")

Following the played out drama, praise the children and thank them and the youth volunteer.  Conclude the children's time by emphasizing how important it was for the donkeys to be cooperative.  Normally, donkeys that have never been ridden may buckle.  But not Jesus' donkeys.  These must have been special donkeys that helped and obeyed the Lord Jesus.


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