Hey BridgeKids Families!
Jesus’ followers had seen Jesus alive! Two disciples met Jesus as they were walking to Emmaus, and then Jesus appeared to a group of His disciples as they met together in a locked room. But one of the disciples, Thomas, had missed out. He wasn’t there when Jesus appeared. He hadn’t seen Jesus for himself.
Let’s read more of the story in John 20:24-29. So despite his friends’ claims that the Lord was risen, Thomas doubted. In fact, he refused to believe. (John 20:25) Witnesses testified that they had seen Jesus, but Thomas wanted physical evidence. He lacked faith and was stubborn in his unbelief.
More than a week passed, and Thomas was with the other disciples in a room. Again, the doors were locked for their safety. Much like before, Jesus appeared before the disciples and said, “Peace be with you.”
This time, Thomas was there. Jesus told Thomas to believe. He urged him not only to look, but to feel Jesus’ wounds for himself. Here, Jesus gave grace to Thomas. He gave Thomas the physical proof he was looking for. Jesus was no ghost; Jesus was alive!
Thomas immediately believed, and Jesus said, “Because you have seen Me, you have believed. Those who believe without seeing are blessed.” (John 20:29)
Thomas saw Jesus for himself. He saw that Jesus had been raised from the dead and was alive. He saw Jesus’ scars from the cross, where Jesus died for our sins. We have not seen Jesus, but Jesus said if we believe in Him without seeing Him, we are blessed.
The Bible says that God is pleased when we have faith. (Heb. 11:6) As you talk with your kids, explain the meaning of the word faith: “the reality of what is hoped for, the proof of what is not seen” (Heb. 11:1). Faith is believing without seeing. It is trusting that God is who He says He is, and He will do what He says He will do. (See Num. 23:19.)
Faith cannot be mustered up on your own; it is a gift from God. (Eph. 2:8-9) Pray that God would grant your kids faith to believe in Jesus as Lord and Savior.
Ask the Questions:
- Who was not with the other friends when they first saw Jesus? (Thomas)
- What did Thomas want to see and touch before he would believe? (Jesus’ hands and side)
- What did Jesus say when He came in? (Peace to you!)
- What did Thomas say when Jesus showed him His hands and side? (“My Lord and my God!”)
- What did Jesus say about people who believe in Him without seeing? (They are blessed.)
Bridge Kids Announcements:
- Bring your Bibles: With the new format in BridgeKids we will be using Bibles more. We want your children to grow more comfortable using a Bible, and in particular their own Bible. If they have a Bible, be sure they bring it. Don’t have a Bible? Stay tuned for creative ways that the kids can earn one.
- Penny Wars!: Every week in BridgeKids we take an offering to teach the kids how to give back to God. Right now we are raising money for the new BridgeKids space at Beach Haven.
- Camp Scholarships: This year we already have 45 students signed up for summer camp at Lake Ann. We take students to Lake Ann camp because of the amazing experience they have and the camp’s commitment to developing the faith of each student. If you are a student who would like to attend, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Unit Memory Verse: 1 Corinthians 15:3. What I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that He was buried, that He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures.