…without the shedding of blood, there is no forgiveness. Hebrews 9:22b
It’s not surprising that kids often think of the Bible as a source for lots of stories that are loosely connected, if they’re connected at all. As we focus in on the events leading up to the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus, we can take some time to demonstrate what was in the mind of God from the very beginning. We can track a biblical theme that ties all of Scripture together with a scarlet cord of truth.
One way to do this is to take a lamb as the center piece and connect primarily Old Testament passages to it. If someone in your family has a toy lamb, borrow it for the rest of this month and find some red yarn or ribbon and tie a few passages to it as a discovery game, or adventure. The ones I suggest may not be your choice, so feel free to find your own Bible-verse pathway to the cross with your kids.
This is what I have to offer:
- Genesis 3:15, 21 – eternal enmity between Satan and God; God creates covering
- Genesis 22:8-14 – a lamb for a father
- Exodus 12:1-14 – a lamb for a household
- Leviticus 1:1,2,10; 17:11 – a lamb for a nation
- Isaiah 53:7 – the Lamb, identified as the Messiah
- John 1: 29 – a Lamb for the world
- I Peter 1:18-21 – the Lamb from the beginning
- Rev. 5:11-14 – the Lamb, present at the end
Here are a few suggestions for using this sequence of verses to help your kids see the ‘big picture’ and so to more fully understand the cross of Christ.
Print the verses on 3×5 cards. Punch a hole in the corner of each and attach it to a strand of red yarn or ribbon. If you’re using a picture of a lamb, print verses on sticky notes that can be placed around the lamb, then draw a scarlet line from each to the lamb when the time comes.
Depending on the ages of your family members, you might consider giving individuals the list of references and asking each to read them all and come up with an explanation of how they are related, how they fit together, what main point or points they illustrate, what they have in common.
Then come together and read each passage aloud, affixing the corresponding card by its scarlet strand to the Lamb as you do this. Talk about the discoveries individuals have made on their own. Let one person record these.
Supply 5×7 or 8 1/2 x11 sheets of unlined paper asking each family member to draw an illustration for this Bible experience, placing a cross at the center of the page. Post these where everyone can see them.
End with a directed time of sharing, asking for individuals to complete a praise statement something like this: “I praise God that He made a way for me to be forgiven by….” (These could be printed on the drawings.)
Consider memorizing a verse or verses from the I Peter passage to seal truth from this adventure permanently in your family members’ hearts.
…redeemd by the precious blood of Christ, a Lamb without blemish…chosen before the creation of the world…revealed in these last times for our sake. (1 Peter 1) Hallelujah!