Because I am so inspired by the compassion of our Savior in this story, I decided to make a less complicated, alternate project . Color the page and write an appropriate verse. Again, I used the thick foil seal from a nut can to make the “fetters” but regular foil is o.k. too. Cut three, shape a slight curve over a pencil before gluing these on where indicated with a thick blop of tacky glue. You will also need one of those small novelty chains… (the kind that a rabbit’s foot is attached to) This chain can also be purchased by the spool… Look for “ball chain”. Poke a tiny hole with a pencil by the man’s leg to insert the end of the chain. Now make another tiny hole to inset the other end of the chain in. Tape the ends on the back. (Don’t forget to check out the video mentioned in yesterday’s post)
For this lesson I combined a passage from the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5: 14-16) “let your light shine before men” so the Father in heaven is glorified, with a practical application from the story of the man of the tombs in Mark 5: 1-20. I can highly recommend the You-tube music video entitled “Man of the Tombs” by Bob Bennett uploaded by SC Watchman (5:47 minutes) to help you prepare for this lesson.
This story is also told in Luke 8: 26- 38 and Matthew( who would have been an eyewitness) 9: 18-2, and Matthew’s version mentions two men. All of the commentaries I have read say that only one man was possessed by the “Legion” of demons, so that is why only one man is mentioned in Mark and Luke . This fierce man had been driven from society and lived in hopeless self-destuction and despair until he met the Master. Note that the demons were not confused as to who Jesus was and cried out through the man “You Son of the Most High God” . Sensing their fate, they begged to be cast into a nearby herd of swine and not into the Abyss. Jesus permitted this. Leaving the man, they rushed into the pigs and then drowned themselves in the Sea of Galilee, showing all who would later read this account the destructive nature of evil. The Gadarenes asked Jesus to depart, being “seized with great fear.” (and perhaps a little miffed at their financial loss, but that is speculation.) The man begged to able to go with Jesus when he got ready to depart but the answer to this worthy prayer was “no”… “Jesus did not permit him, but said to him, ‘Go home to your friends, and tell them what great things the Lord has done for you, and how He has had compassion on you.’ And he departed and began to proclaim in Decapolis ” the great things Jesus had done for him: and all men marveled as he let his light shine. Aren’t you thankful that His “compassions fail not ” (Lamentations 3:22) and He is still seeking and saving those who are lost? (Luke 19:10)
The background for this project is a home-made basket similar to Moses’ basket from an earlier post. Two full sheets of paper are needed, one page is cut into strips and the other one needs to be cut with an x-acto blade as shown in photo #1. (You will need to cut these ahead of time and if you have access to a paper cutter, you can cut the strips swiftly… approx. 1/2 wide ). Weave your strips and glue your ends, trimming any pieces that hang over. Crease sides as shown in #2 , then un-crease and write your verses on the front and back . The sides will be stapled so it will be easier to write the verses with the woven part lying flat. If you have younger kids I have added a pdf file below(*) with the verses printed that can just be cut out and glued on the baskets. Card stock is recommended in one or two colors but not necessary. If your kids are older, you can also weave a basket out of strips of brown grocery bags. The strips are folded so no raw edges show and this also hides any writing. One large grocery bag makes 12- 1 inch strips which are 19 inches long , or 6 longer strips. Figure out which size basket you want to determine how many strips you will need and their length. Verses can be written with a black felt pen and shortened…see sample of finished basket. The verse on the back was shortened to say,” …Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket…”(Matthew 5:15) To finish off the basket, make a “rim” by cutting one long strip at least 3 inches wide. Fold this strip in half and then fold up both edges 1/2 inch. Center along the top of your basket, glue the front, fold over and then glue the back. ( I hope the picture help!)
Another purpose of this strip is to add structure and support to the sides and hide the staples. These baskets can also be painted ( I have used a white, water-based house paint for a nice antique effect) and are really quite sturdy! There are other weaving methods available on the internet so use what works for you. Be sure you make up one first so you can work out the kinks! My kids asked me which direction to write the verses. I think that depends on if they are going to use the baskets in a functional way…or just as a background for the verse.
weaving – verses Mark 5: 19*
The boat made it safely to the shore of the country of the Gadarenes and was met by a demon-possessed man, who recognized who Jesus was and cried out “What have I to do with you, Son of the Most High God? ” Jesus set the man free and told the man to go back to his home and tell what great things the Lord had done for him. They journeyed back across the sea and was approached by Jairus, a ruler of the synagogue. His 12 -year old daughter was a death’s door and he begged for Jesus to lay hands on her, that she might live. Jesus went with him, followed by a throng of people. A certain woman, which had a bleeding condition for 12 years and had become impoverished by doctor bills but had failed to improve, was desperate for healing. She had heard of Jesus and came up behind him to touch His garment. Jesus stopped the procession of people to ask for the woman to acknowledge her step of faith in believing He could heal her. The woman came and fell down before Him in fear and trembling , probably fearing the crowd’s reaction since she was considered “unclean” by her bleeding condition, and confessed her audacious action. Jesus tenderly addressed her as “Daughter” and “Your faith (in Me) has made you well”. Just then, Jairus received word that his daughter had perished. Jesus told the ruler of the synagogue to believe and not be afraid and He continued on His way to his home , where He raised the girl to life. What a wonderful, Savior.
For a description of the “fringes” read Numbers 15:38-39 and include this in your lesson.