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Kids Resources – Acts 14

Hi everyone, hope you’re all having a good week settling into new and old routines! Maybe you’re keeping a cautious lid on your excitement in case it doesn’t last long, either way, we can be pleased most of our youngsters are back, and those who aren’t are being looked after in the best way right now.

This week we are carrying on looking at Acts Chapter 14. Paul and Barnabas continue their journey, preaching to Jews and Gentiles and getting more grief!

Game/Challenge

They say we should do something that scares us or get out of our comfort zones!! Are they wise? 😉😆 We probably all have things that scare us a bit or challenge us and sometimes doing those things is really helpful in growing and developing.

Can you think of something you can challenge yourself to do this week that’s a bit scary or involves stepping out of your comfort zone? Maybe it’s time to lose the stabilisers on your bike! Maybe climb a bit higher on the climbing frame at the park? How about asking someone else to join in your games in the playground? Have a think!

Being a Christian and following Jesus means there will be times when we have to be braver than we’d like and step out of our comfort zones so that God can use us to tell others about Jesus. In the passage today, Paul and Barnabas show us a it about what that looked like for them…

Bible Bit

Here it is from the International Children’s Bible:

Acts Chapter 14

Paul and Barnabas in Iconium

In Iconium, Paul and Barnabas went as usual to the Jewish synagogue. They spoke so well that a great many Jews and Greeks believed. 2 But some of the Jews who did not believe excited the non-Jewish people and turned them against the believers. 3 But Paul and Barnabas stayed in Iconium a long time and spoke bravely for the Lord. The Lord showed that their message about his grace was true by giving them the power to work miracles and signs. 4 But some of the people in the city agreed with the Jews. Others believed the apostles. So the city was divided.

5 Some non-Jewish people, some Jews, and some of their rulers wanted to harm Paul and Barnabas by killing them with stones. 6 When Paul and Barnabas learned about this, they went to Lystra and Derbe, cities in Lycaonia, and to the areas around those cities. 7 They announced the Good News there, too.

Paul in Lystra and Derbe

8 In Lystra there sat a man who had been born crippled; he had never walked. 9 This man was listening to Paul speak. Paul looked straight at him and saw that the man believed God could heal him. 10 So he cried out, “Stand up on your feet!” The man jumped up and began walking around. 11 When the crowds saw what Paul did, they shouted in their own Lycaonian language. They said, “The gods have become like men! They have come down to us!” 12 And the people began to call Barnabas “Zeus.” They called Paul “Hermes,” because he was the main speaker. 13 The temple of Zeus was near the city. The priest of this temple brought some bulls and flowers to the city gates. The priest and the people wanted to offer a sacrifice to Paul and Barnabas. 14 But when the apostles, Barnabas and Paul, understood what they were about to do, they tore their clothes in anger. Then they ran in among the people and shouted, 15 “Men, why are you doing these things? We are only men, human beings like you! We are bringing you the Good News. We are telling you to turn away from these worthless things and turn to the true living God. He is the One who made the sky, the earth, the sea, and everything that is in them. 16 In the past, God let all the nations do what they wanted. 17 Yet he did things to prove he is real: He shows kindness to you. He gives you rain from heaven and crops at the right times. He gives you food and fills your hearts with joy.” 18 Even with these words, they were barely able to keep the crowd from offering sacrifices to them.

19 Then some Jews came from Antioch and Iconium. They persuaded the people to turn against Paul. And so they threw stones at Paul and dragged him out of town. They thought that they had killed him. 20 But the followers gathered around him, and he got up and went back into the town. The next day, he and Barnabas left and went to the city of Derbe.

The Return to Antioch in Syria

21 Paul and Barnabas told the Good News in Derbe and many became followers. Paul and Barnabas returned to Lystra, Iconium, and Antioch. 22 In those cities they made the followers of Jesus stronger. They helped them to stay in the faith. They said, “We must suffer many things to enter God’s kingdom.” 23 They chose elders for each church, by praying and giving up eating. These elders were men who had trusted the Lord. So Paul and Barnabas put them in the Lord’s care.

24 Then they went through Pisidia and came to Pamphylia. 25 They preached the message in Perga, and then they went down to Attalia. 26 And from there they sailed away to Antioch. This is where the believers had put them into God’s care and had sent them out to do this work. And now they had finished the work.

27 When they arrived in Antioch, they gathered the church together. Paul and Barnabas told them all about what God had done with them. They told how God had made it possible for the non-Jews to believe! 28 And they stayed there a long time with the followers.

Videos

This is another of the daft ones that older children might like!

This is an audio version with sound effects

This animation is from The Holy Tales and is good for the younger ones. It doesn’t cover all of the chapter, but it gets the point across

Ages 3-7: You will probably want to retell the main parts of the story rather than read it straight from the bible as it’s a long passage. The main bits to include would be that the journey continues for Paul and Barnabas (you could print off the map and plot the journey taken from chapter 13 to now), they tell Jewish people and none Jewish people about Jesus, some of them choose to believe and others don’t. Again, some get very angry with Paul and Barnabas and plan to hurt and even try to kill them, but they fail, and Paul and Barnabas carry on telling people wherever they go. More amazing miracles happen (not all are detailed, but one healing of a lame man is), more people start to follow Jesus and the church gets bigger. Paul and Barnabas go back to Antioch in Syria and tell the church there what went on.

In the video, I did a little illustration of what it means for us to have the power of Jesus and the Holy Spirit in us (we are able to withstand way more than we could alone), using paper and a toilet roll tube (!). You might like to draw out that in this chapter we hear more of Paul and Barnabas facing horrible times and serious grief, but because of Jesus in them, they carried on doing what they knew was right and God’s work. We too have the same Jesus and His power in us so that we too can withstand anything that comes our way. You might want to pray with your child/ren if there’s anything in particular you know they are struggling with or just that they know God’s power and presence and they can be as bold and persistent as Paul and Barnabas.

Recap questions:

  • What were the men in the story called? (Paul and Barnabas)
  • Did they stay in one place and live there? (No, they travelled to lots of places)
  • What did they do in all the different places they went to? (Told everyone they could about Jesus)
  • Who was with them wherever they went, giving them power and strength to be brave and keep going? (Jesus and the Holy Spirit)

Ages 7-11: You could read the passage straight for above or from a Bible together, sharing parts with each other or you might want to retell the main parts of the story rather than read it straight from the bible as it’s a long passage. If you do, the main bits to include would be that the journey continues for Paul and Barnabas (you could print off the map and plot the journey taken from chapter 13 to now), they tell Jewish people and none Jewish people about Jesus, some of them choose to believe and others don’t. Again, some get very angry with Paul and Barnabas and plan to hurt and even try to kill them, but they fail, and Paul and Barnabas carry on telling people wherever they go. More amazing miracles happen (not all are detailed, but one healing of a lame man is), more people start to follow Jesus and the church gets bigger. Paul and Barnabas go back to Antioch in Syria and tell the church there what went on.

In the video, I did a little illustration of what it means for us to have the power of Jesus and the Holy Spirit in us (we are able to withstand way more than we could alone), using paper and a toilet roll tube (!). You might like to draw out that in this chapter we hear more of Paul and Barnabas facing horrible times and serious grief, but because of Jesus in them, they carried on doing what they knew was right and God’s work. We too have the same Jesus and His power in us so that we too can withstand anything that comes our way. You might want to pray with your child/ren if there’s anything in particular you know they are struggling with or just that they know God’s power and presence and they can be as bold and persistent as Paul and Barnabas.

Recap Questions:

  • When Paul and Barnabas got to Iconium where did they go? (The                  synagogue)
  • When it was clear that some people were not happy with what Paul and Barnabas, did they leave Iconium? (No, initially they stayed for a long time, speaking bravely to tell people about Jesus. They didn’t change the message of Jesus and it divided the city)
  • When did Paul and Barnabas go to Lystra? (When they heard about a plan to stone them to death)
  • When they got to Lystra, did they lie low and have a break from telling people the Gospel? (No, they preached the good news there too)
  • What miracle do we hear happened in Lystra? (a lame man was healed)
  • Describe in a few sentences the reaction from the people who witnessed it. (They called Paul and Barnabas gods, they tried to bring sacrifices to them, as soon as Paul and Barnabas understood what was going on they were horrified and tried to tell them to stop and that they were just men, they told them there is one creator God, but the people didn’t stop trying to make sacrifices to them.)
  • Then some more Jews came from Iconium and Antioch and persuaded others to try and stone Paul. Did they succeed? (No, they thought he was dead so dragged him out of the city and left him there)
  • Paul and Barnabas then went to Derbe. What did they do there? (Yep, told people the good news of Jesus)
  • They then went back to Lystra, the place where Paul had just been almost stoned to death! Why did they go back here? (They wanted to encourage and strengthen the new Christians there, and in Iconium and Antioch. It says they chose Elders, or leaders, for the churches there so maybe they hadn’t had the chance to do this before they had to leave when Paul was nearly killed.)
  • Then they went down to Pamphilia, Perga and Attalia, preaching the Gospel as they went, before returning to Antioch in Syria (where they set off from at the start of Acts 13). What did they do when they got back to Antioch, Syria? (They got the church together and told them all that God had done through them and that God had made it possible for non-Jews to believe and be saved.)

It’s clear from this passage that Paul and Barnabas must have had some serious courage to keep telling the Gospel message when they were getting so much opposition from people who didn’t like it. To go back to the city where you’d just been stoned almost to death, must have needed some bravery. But they knew they weren’t alone, they knew God was with them and would give them the strength to be able to handle whatever came their way. It didn’t mean the bad things didn’t happen, just that God was with them through it and He had the final say and His plans were being worked out in spreading the Gospel.

This brings challenges to us and how we live.

  • Do you feel you trust God as much as Paul and Barnabas did?
  • Are there times when you feel a bit afraid of new things or situations?
  • Paul and Barnabas never really fitted into the places where they went- many Jewish people didn’t want to have them in their synagogues and many non-Jews didn’t want to hear the message of God either but they didn’t change to fit in. As followers of Jesus we should be ready to be the ones who stand out and sometimes that means saying things that other people don’t believe to be true, or doing the right thing when it isn’t the easiest.
  • What can we do to make these things easier and possible for us to do? (We can ask to be filled with the Holy Spirit and receive strength, courage and wisdom. We can ask for more faith when we are struggling to believe or trust in God)

Craft/Activities

Paul and Barnabas met people who believed in all kinds of different gods. They told them that there is only one God and He made the whole world and everything in it.

  • What do you love that God made? Is it grass to play on? The sky? Dogs? Colours? Water? The sea? Birds? Flowers? Why not create a poster, picture, piece of artwork, a 3D picture, a collage, a display, a model, an information booklet all about something you love!? Let your own imagination decide what you come up with!
  • Print off the colouring sheet or the maze to complete 😊 There is also some Thought Bubble pages, where you can think of all the things God made or ways to spread the good news of Jesus!
  • There’s also a puzzle sheet with ways to tell other about Jesus.
  • Don’t forget to update your map with Paul and Barnabas’ first set of journeys!