Objective: To discover that during Old Testament times the Holy Spirit came upon people to help them do jobs they could not do on their own.
Game - 6 mins
Aim: to play a game that is so difficult it is almost impossible.
You will need: five clothes pegs, a plastic cup and a chair.
Place the cup on a chair. Ask a volunteer to stand in front of the chair. Explain that the volunteer needs to tuck a clothes peg under their chin, lean over the chair and drop the peg into the cup without using their hands. Allow the volunteer five attempts before allowing somebody else to have a go.
Another challenge - 3 mins
Aim: to play a second game that is so difficult it is almost impossible.
You will need: a bowl of marbles, an empty bowl and some chopsticks.
Give a volunteer some chopsticks. Place the bowl of marbles and the empty bowl in front of them. Ask the volunteer to move the marbles from one bowl to the other using the chopsticks. After 20 seconds or so allow somebody else to have a go.
Talk about - 6 mins
You will need: ‘3 in 1’ symbol (see Printables), ‘3 Persons’ textboxes (see Printables), Old Testament story textboxes (see Printables), The Holy Spirit arrow (see Printables), a whiteboard, a big sheet of paper, sticky tac, marker pens and a Bible.
Before the session write the Bible verse on the whiteboard or paper.
Talk about the challenge the children have just attempted. Ask the children if they found it difficult or even impossible. Explain that in the Old Testament (before Jesus was born) God gave some people jobs that were too difficult for them to do on their own. Show the Old Testament story textboxes. God knew that they couldn't do the jobs alone so he sent His Holy Spirit to be with them. The Holy Spirit gave them the power to do the jobs they needed to do. The Bible tells us that these people were empowered by the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit came upon Bezalel (Exodus 31:1–5), Moses (Numbers 11:25), Samson (Judges 15:13–14) and King Saul (1 Samuel 10:9–11). The Holy Spirit empowered them to do different ‘jobs’.
Point to the verse and explain that we've learnt this verse was a message from God to Zerubbabel. God’s message was that Zerubbabel would finish the Temple not by his own might nor by his own power but by God’s Spirit - the Holy Spirit. Underline the phrase ‘my Spirit’. Show the 5th Old Testament story textbox. Explain that God was promising Zerubbabel that his Holy Spirit would help him to finish the Temple. The Holy Spirit would empower Zerubbabel. Using his own power or even working with other people Zerubbabel wouldn't be able to finish the Temple; he needed God's help; he needed the power of the Holy Spirit.
Quickly remind the children that the Bible teaches that there is one true God, three parts; God is three in one. Refer to the ‘3 in 1’ symbol as you explain that the parts of God are called Persons. The three Persons of God are God the Father, God the Son (whom we call Jesus) and God the Holy Spirit. Each of the Persons is fully God. The Bible teaches that each of the Persons is real and living. They are good, powerful and wise. They are loving, joyful and peaceful. The three Persons are so perfectly joined they are one. There is one God and he is three in one. Hold up one finger, then three fingers then one again.
Open a Bible between the New Testament and the Old Testament. It may be helpful to remind younger children that the Old Testament tells us about the time before Jesus was born and the New Testament tells us about the time after Jesus was born. Point to the Old Testament as you explain that, during Old Testament times the Holy Spirit came upon people to give them power to do jobs they couldn't do on their own. Now point to the New Testament and explain that , during New Testament times the Holy Spirit came to be with people in a new way.
Quickly show the Holy Spirit arrow and remind the children that the Bible teaches that when Jesus went up the Holy Spirit came down. When the Holy Spirit came down he came to be with Christians in a new way. Christians believe that the Holy Spirit is now with them wherever they are and whatever they are doing. Use sticky tac to stick the ‘Holy Spirit arrow’ next to the verse. Explain that, a bit like the wind, people cannot see the Holy Spirit but Christians believe he is with people everyday, everywhere.
Explain that next week we will learn that Christians believe the Holy Spirit still helps people to do things they cannot do on their own - Christians believe the Holy Spirit helps them to live God's way.