This page will provide teachers and students with materials to use in a group or as an individual in studying the key concepts of the scriptures. As this is a learning experience for teacher and student our resources are geared to providing questions for discussion or as the basis for games, craft activities, bulletin boards, or projects. You are only limited by your imagination. Please let us know how you have used the youth bible studies and teacher prompts in your family, church, or individual studies.
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The story of Queen Esther:
Purim is a time to reflect on the blessing of God’s deliverance and the knowledge that God can use the humble who serve Him to put to shame the proud who seek to destroy His people. This story of Esther (retold in a 7 act play with stage directions) can be performed as a play or informally read as a reader’s theatre activity.
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Passover Youth and Family Activities
A new year has begun! And with it comes the promise of the spring festival season. These Passover youth and family activities might encourage you to study God’s word and create some meaningful and memorable moments.
Here are some thoughts and resources to help you make it a special time of learning for the whole family.
Biblical Reader’s Theatre scripts
An excellent way to engage young and old in the biblical narratives, reader’s theatre provides an opportunity for everyone to participate in playing a role and gaining greater knowledge of the characters and events illuminated in the scriptures. Whether performed as a “play” or just enjoyed around the dining table, reader’s theatre could add to your celebration of God’s festivals.
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Pentecost/Feast of Weeks:
Pentecost celebrates the awesome power of the voice of the Eternal delivering the covenant from Mt. Sinai amidst the thunder and lightning. It also commemorates the giving of the Holy Spirit and the establishment of the Church of God, after the resurrection and ascension of Jesus, the Messiah. Pentecost, Shavuot, Feast of Weeks is an annual Sabbath rich in meaning for all those who believe in the hope of the resurrection.
And you shall count for yourselves from the day after the Sabbath, from the day that you brought the sheaf of the wave offering: seven Sabbaths shall be completed. 16 Count fifty days to the day after the seventh Sabbath; then you shall offer a new grain offering to the LORD…And you shall proclaim on the same day that it is a holy convocation to you. You shall do no customary work on it. It shall be a statute forever in all your dwellings throughout your generations. Leviticus 23:15-21
Christians are called to fight an ongoing battle against a spiritual adversary. But this is only possible if we are being transformed by the Spirit of God. Peter encourages believers to stay alert and watch out, so we can successfully conquer and be victorious in our struggles. We win this spiritual warfare by becoming holy as God is holy. It is only the spirit of God that will give us the courage of our convictions, and the godly character that will set us apart from this world. How does this happen?
What kind of spirit motivates people to do what they do? To answer that question, Luke, wrote of Jesus’ journey with this disciples to Jerusalem. Along the road the weary travellers asked to stay in a Samaritan village, but they were rebuffed. Why? Because the Samaritans saw that the group was on their way to Jerusalem. Now, there had been 500 years of contention between Jews and Samaritans over where one should worship. It had begun long before in the time of Zerubbabel when the Samaritans had tried to undermine the rebuilding of the temple in Jerusalem. So there was a long-standing ethnic feud that prompted the Samaritan’s reaction to Jesus and his disciples. Their sin was a mere lack of hospitality to travel worn strangers. What would you have done if you walked in their sandals?
Our world has an appetite for epic stories of triumph over the forces of darkness and evil. “Endgame” is a recent example which brings to mind the question, “What is God’s endgame for his saints?” It is certainly an even greater thriller than one that can be imagined by Hollywood. And it too is a story of the triumph of light over darkness, and the truth over lies and deception. It is a tale of spiritual powers locked in battle for the cosmos, and the eventual overthrow of the great deceiver. But there is more to the story.
Confusion abounds when it comes to the nature of God’s spirit, The Holy Spirit. “Ruach” in Hebrew and “pneuma” in Greek can both be translated as Spirit, spirit, wind, or breath, depending upon the context in the scripture. Some theologians or translators would have you believe that the Spirit is a “Holy Ghost,” or the Third Person in a Trinity? But is this the truth?
What is the Spirit of God, the Spirit of Power, the Comforter, the Voice of the spirit and how does it work in the world? Why, as Christians, is it vitally important for us to understand the role of the Spirit in our walk with God? This series will answer these questions and many more. Learn what you need to know about the power of God’s Spirit in your life.
Is a better world coming? If we believe the prophesies of Isaiah, we have hope of a new world in the future. But this world will not come until God’s spirit is poured out on all people. This change will not come until the Messiah returns. It will come when the Spirit of the Lord, the spirit of knowledge and wisdom and righteousness, rules with justice and fairness. And, the Spirit of power transforms the very nature of the animal kingdom — so they will no longer hurt or destroy. A time of transformation is coming. Are you preparing for that time?
Have you ever noticed this in Luke’s account? In rehearsing the events surrounding Christ’s resurrection, the women came on the first day of the weeks. Have you wondered why the original Greek was plural, week(s). Yet many mistranslations abound, so they miss the significance of this statement. If they knew the law of Moses, they would have realized this was a reference to the beginning of the 50 day count to Pentecost. Looking back into God’s instructions in the law concerning the Feast of Weeks, the Feast of Firstfruits, we find another curious yet meaningful side-note. In the midst of the section about the holy day, there is a specific and seemingly unrelated command. It addressed the needs of the poor and the stranger, the foreigner. And it tied together the story of Ruth with Pentecost the law and the spirit.
Traditionally the book of Ruth was read on Pentecost, Shavuoth, the Feast of Weeks. What are the lessons that God wanted us to glean from Ruth and Pentecost? The Jews reflect on the giving of the law to the people of Israel during the Shavuoth season, and Christians rehearse the giving of the Holy Spirit to the Jewish believers in Christ, the Messiah, on Pentecost.
So how does the book of Ruth fit into this picture?
As we celebrate God’s holy day we gain a deeper understanding of the path God has set before us, and the power he has given us to fulfill His purpose. Jeff Patton connects the significance of Shavu’ot in the Old Covenant with Pentecost in the new and shows us how Ruth’s dedication to God, as her God, led God to include her in “His people,” as the firstfruits of creation and co-heirs of Christ.
We are almost 2000 years from that eventful Pentecost, when the Holy Spirit was poured out upon the disciples of Christ. In celebrating Pentecost today, we call to remembrance all the lessons of this Holy Day. Are our hearts open to God’s work in our lives so we are not worshiping in vain? Do we accept the divine authority of scripture, avoiding lawlessness and living obedient lives through the power of God’s Spirit.
Why Celebrate Pentecost?
The scriptures advise the people of God to bring out of their treasure things that are both old and new. Jeff Patton reveals the purpose for Pentecost as revealed in the Hebrew and Greek scriptures, making plain the meaning of the day for Christians. As we celebrate Pentecost we look back and reflect on events that transpired millennia ago, but we also look forward to a spiritual harvest that will take place in the not too distant future. Are we preparing to be firstfruits in God’s harvest?
Paul had decided to sail on past Ephesus, for he didn’t want to spend any more time in the province of Asia. He was hurrying to get to Jerusalem, if possible, in time for the Festival of Pentecost. Acts 20:16
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The Passover and Unleavened Bread
Passover in the spring of the year is rich in symbolism relating to our covenant relationship with God and helping us to see the need for self-reflection, a sacrifice for our sins, and a Saviour to restore a right relationship with God and deliver us from Egypt – a symbol of life cut off from God’s wisdom and guidance.
Cleanse out the old leaven that you may be a new lump, as you really are unleavened. For Christ, our Passover lamb, has been sacrificed. 8 Let us therefore celebrate the festival, not with the old leaven, the leaven of malice and evil, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. 1 Corinthians 5:7-9 ESV
These are the feasts of the LORD, holy convocations which you shall proclaim at their appointed times. On the fourteenth day of the first month at twilight is the LORD’s Passover. And on the fifteenth day of the same month is the Feast of Unleavened Bread to the LORD; seven days you must eat unleavened bread. On the first day you shall have a holy convocation; you shall do no customary work on it. But you shall offer an offering made by fire to the LORD for seven days. The seventh day shall be a holy convocation; you shall do no customary work on it. Leviticus 23:4-8
This reader’s theatre/play is an excellent teaching tool focusing on the work that is needed to provide a safe place for God’s people to worship Him in Spirit and truth. The story of Nehemiah has a vital message for every generation, as it shows the power of God to defeat our enemies and provide us with the resources to accomplish the work He gives us to do. Nehemiah, rebuilding the walls
Nehemiah Celebrates God’s Feast of Tabernacles: Once in a Thousand Years
Click here for script Nehemiah-2022
Cast: Davie family, Leader family, Poffenroth family, Patton Family
Nehemiah and the rebuilding of the wall around Jerusalem teaches us many lessons about our reliance on God for leadership and the value of working together to accomplish God’s purpose. The wall’s restoration provided the people of God with a safe place to worship God and keep the Feast of Tabernacles.