Scripture: 2 Samuel 11-12 and Psalm 51
Okay- this is another doosie for young ones. In case you are new to the site, we use the curriculum called He Established a Testimony from Children Desiring God. Sometimes in young kid’s Sunday School classes we can build up David to be super-human. Because David had a heart after God’s own heart and killed and giant and became king, he can be given super hero status. These chapters show David in a much different light. A sinner in need of God’s forgiveness. This is how I approached the lesson with my class, maybe you will find it helpful and a useful tool in describing sin and modeling repentance to our kiddos.
Focus: Sin displeases God and God will punish sin; God is rich in mercy and His forgiveness is great
Target Age: 4-5 years
Opener: Play with musical instruments. Play, dance, and sing a worship song to God.
Lesson: From the time David was a little boy, God had blessed him with musical ability. David played the harp for king Saul to calm him down and bring him peace, and he sang and danced before the Lord often. David wrote many songs which are written down in the book of the Bible called Psalms. It is fun to go through Psalms and try to see what was going on in David’s life when he wrote that song.
Psalm 51 is one of the songs that David wrote and the Bible tells us what happened in David’s life right before he wrote the song.
One day David was walking around in his room and he saw something that wasn’t his, but he wanted it. He wanted it so bad. At that moment, his heart loved that thing more than he loved God. When our hearts love something more than God, it is called sin. David decided to take the thing that he wanted and make it his. So David sinned against God. It started in his heart and then it happened with his actions.
Discussion: David loved God, but he was still a sinner. Every person is a sinner and unable to love God fully. When we sin it makes our hearts dirty. When our skin gets dirty we can wash it with soap and water to make it clean, but how to we wash our hearts when they are dirty with sin?
Read these verses from Psalm 51:
Have mercy on me, O God,
according to your steadfast love;
according to your abundant mercy
blot out my transgressions.
Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity,
and cleanse me from my sin! (1-2)
Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean;
wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow. (7)
Create in me a clean heart, O God,
and renew a right spirit within me. (10)
David was repenting, he was telling God that he knew he had sinned and his heart was dirty and asking God to forgive him and to clean his heart. That is what we need to do when we sin too.
Where is Jesus in this story?
David’s heart was dirty and needed to be cleaned by God. He was a sinner, but Jesus never sinned his heart was the only human heart ever to be white and never get dirty. So when Jesus dies on the cross, he took the dirt from our hearts onto his clean heart so that the sin was punished when Jesus died.
If we put our trust in Jesus, like David did,
(Cast me not away from your presence, and take not your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and uphold me with a willing spirit. Psalm 51:11-12)
our hearts will be washed clean because our sin was already punished.
Activities: Pudding and shaving cream heart paintings
Supplies: plastic tablecloth, smocks for each child, a bowl of shaving crème, a bowl of chocolate pudding, a large sheet of paper for each child, black marker, bucket of warm soapy water and a towel
Give each child a large sheet of construction paper. Have a big bowl of chocolate pudding for them to share and a big bowl of white shaving crème for them to share. Draw two large hearts on each child’s paper and write the verse Psalm 51:7b “wash me and I shall be whiter than snow.” Have the children ‘paint’ one of the hearts with chocolate pudding. Explain that our hearts our dirty because we are sinners. Right now our hands are dirty. How should we get our hands clean? (The kids will probably suggest washing them in the bucket of soapy water.) Yes, that’s right, washing our hands with soap and water will get them clean, but how will we get our dirty hearts clean? Can we wash them with soap and water?
Jesus was the only person every born to never have a dirty heart because he was not a sinner. But when he died on the cross, he took all of the sins that make us dirty and was punished for them. So if trust in Jesus, the Bible says he will wash our sins whiter than snow.
So how do we clean our dirty hearts? By trusting in Jesus!!
Wash the children’s hands and dry them. Then let them paint in the other heart with white shaving crème.
I hope you enjoyed this lesson and can see the value in teaching the “hard” ones to small children.