John the Baptist had the distinct ministry of being “the voice of one crying in the wilderness: Prepare the way of the LORD” as spoken of by the prophets Isaiah and Malachi. For this lesson I stress the importance of obeying the Father’s will . Both John and Jesus are good examples of this. The word baptize means to immerse or overwhelm. John was calling the Jews to repent and get ready for the Kingdom of God. For a person to be baptized in John’s day was to confess to be as far away from God as a Gentile and that there was a need to “get right” with Him. Jesus had no need of repentance, but He was completely identifying Himself with sinful man. His Father spoke his approval of His Son with a majestic voice from heaven signifying this was no ordinary baptism.
This project will only be successful with card stock. Copy paper is too wimpy . The dove is attached to a craft stick with tacky glue . I tend to get a little dramatic where the “voice of God” is mentioned and out comes the special glitter!!! I have those colorful pieces pre-made and glittered before class for the younger kids. Pre-cut slit with x-acto blade. Illustrated by Aaron Ernst.To keep the dove and craft stick from flopping around, tape strip on back of page as shown in photo.Baptism today is a dramatization or an “acting out” of a Christian’s identification with Jesus in His death and resurrection. Coming up from the water is a picture of rising from the dead. Romans 6: 1-6 has a good passage on this and explains why the believer should walk in “newness of life”.
In Luke 4:27 we read our Lord’s words “…And many lepers were in Israel in the time of Elisha the prophet, and none of them were cleansed except Naaman the Syrian.” Naaman was the captain of the host of the king of Syria, a mighty man of valour…but he was a leper. A little maidservant , carried away captive from the land of Israel, brought a ray of sunshine to Naaman’s household with her words of hope …” if my lord were with the prophet that is in Samaria, he would heal him of his leprosy.” So in 2 Kings 5 we read that Naaman sought to be healed by traveling to Israel where he was given instructions by the prophet’s servant. He turned away in rage at what he was instructed to do but was tenderly encouraged by his servants to humble himself and dip seven times in the muddy Jordan River. A very different Naaman emerged after the seventh dip…skin like the flesh of a little child and the Bible states, “…and he was clean.” He returns to Elisha and gives his joyful testimony, “Indeed, now I know that there is no God in all the earth, except in Israel…”
Namaan’s miracle – worksheet
Color page. Make sure there is a contrast between Naaman and the water and sky. Cut a strip of card stock 7 inches long and the width of your figure’s hips to glue Namaan on. Cut from trunks down on both figures and glue back to back on your strip. Now trim around arms, shoulders and head so they match up. Write on strip : Naaman dips seven times . Tip: Place a piece of magic tape where the strip and figure meet. This will keep the edges from catching when the kids practice “dipping” Naaman 7 times. Cut slit in river to place Naaman in. (E-xacto makes the best, neat cut…which means you will have to pre-cut for the kids)
If you have a large class you may want to copy the worksheet differently if you have access to a copier. It is a little more work for you but you will save paper if this is a concern. With regular white copy paper, copy the worksheet. Now you should have 2 copies of everything. Attach your 2 scenes together and that will now give you the ability to make copies with colored card stock, printing 2- scene pages at a time. (You can re-copy this page on white card-stock to keep for future re-copying…I do this for all of my master copies.) Now you will want to double up on your figures. Take your 2 sets of figures, attach to a full page of copy paper and recopy. I think you can reposition the figures to get 4 sets on one full page. This page can now be re-copied on ivory or white card stock. When you need to print out 4 lessons of this story, you can do it with only 3 pieces of paper.. hope this helps.
Crossing Jordan River
What was only an eleven day’s journey from Mt. Horeb to the border of the promised land, took forty years. Joshua is now leading the people and God has covenanted to be with him and give him success and great victories if he remains confident and very courageous. They are to cross the Jordan at flood stage and I am sure it is “chilly and deep”… But as soon as the priests carrying the ark touch that first toe in the water, the river stood in a heap and all of Israel passed over on dry ground. A man from each tribe was to take up a large stone on his shoulder to set as a memorial in Gilgal, and likewise, Joshua took 12 stones and set them in the midst of the Jordan River. Then the priests were called to come up out of the water, and the Jordan River resumed its flow. The promised land is a picture of the spirit-filled life…one that has victory over the “flesh”. I heard a good illustration today that might be helpful in explaining this concept to children. A Christian has two natures that battle each other. Picture the spiritual nature as a white dog (the one that comes alive when Jesus has covered your sin though faith) and the “fleshly” nature as a black dog(the one that still likes to sin). The one you feed is the stronger. For Joshua to be strong and have much courage, God tells him to meditate on the Book of the Law day and night and to observe and do all that was written in it ! That is how he feeds his spirit which will enable him to be fearless in the land of giants.
Crossing Jordan – worksheet
To assemble this lesson you will need a separate piece of white card stock. Fold as shown in sample below.The top portion that you fold will measure 2 5/8 inches. On this flap you will “magic tape” the priests and draw the banks of the Jordan. Before you glue down the top flap, place your Joshua 3:11 verse and lightly pencil in the 12 stones of memorial. This page should be a “sandy color”. ( If you want to save on paper and coloring, have the kids write out the verse and draw in the stones themselves in the middle section…use alternate worksheet) Only glue the top 3/4 inch of the flap… you will want the “Jordan River” to be able to slide back and forth. Use blue cardstock or color the water blue, add waves to indicate water ! Glue small tabs on sides to separate water. Cut “water” in half. On bottom flap write the Hebrews verse. Since you have added magic tape to the figures of the priests with the ark, they are moveable….as they approach the water, the water separates (pull tabs). To keep bottom portion from flapping about, you may add a paper clip 🙂
8 1/2 in. by 5 1/2 inches
Crossing Jordan – folding instructions