Monday, November 12, 2007

Teaching Precept Inductive Bible Study to Kids and Children

God's Word Matters to Me Too!
It can teach me, reprove me, correct me, and train me in that I will be adequate, equipped for every good work! (see 2 Tim.3:16-17)

Today was a pretty amazing day.

A friend of mine is teaching a class for her church, and asked me to come in as a guest teacher. She goes to a Catholic church, and her class is made up of about 20 1st graders.

Today's lesson was on Luke chapter 1, through about verse 38.

These kids had never been exposed to inductive study before, and I really didn't know what to expect...but they caught on so quickly! I was so proud of them!

I wrote the 5Ws and an H questions on the board, and then explained to them that questioning the Scripture will help us to better understand it.


I just jumped right in by reading to them straight from the Word...and every few verses I would stop and ask them one of the above, and then write their answers on the board. They loved seeing what they had said, printed out for all to see!

Pretty soon, they figured me out, and were all over it...they listened so well, and then answered my questions like pros!

They were able to tell me that the story was about the angel Gabriel coming to earth and giving a message from God to two people...first to Zacharias, and then to Mary.

It was so cool, because we made a comparison chart of the two on the board..and the children quickly saw that even thought Zacharias was a priest, who likely knew God's Word quite well, he didn't act in faith when Gabriel told him that he would have a son.

By contrast, Mary asked a question of Gabriel, but acted in great faith. She even said that she was the bondservant of the Lord!

I explained to the children that a bondservant is one who has willingly given their life to serve their master. All that their master asks, they will do. They have given up their life to live for another.

So I asked the children.."Who do you want to be like? Whose faith do you want to have?".

We talked about salvation, and about why Jesus came to earth as a baby. We talked about repentance, and about how John the baptist came to pave the way for Jesus..and that John was going through all the area telling people to repent of their sins.

I told them that I had sinned, and that I needed Jesus as my Savior and Lord....their little eyes grew so big when they heard me say that I had sinned...had told lies, had disobeyed.

OOOOOH! They are so precious!

Then, they learned how to act out Proverbs 3:5-6.
"Trust in the Lord with all your heart
And do not lean on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge Him
And He will make your paths straight."

We had a great time with those verses! I asked them all kinds of questions about it to make sure that they understood the concepts, and they did!

At one point I asked one little boy,
"The next time you're on the playground at school, and someone tries to get you to refuse to play with another boy...or someone wants you to join in on making fun of someone else, remember that you don't have to lean on your own understanding of what to do. If you aren't sure how to act, what does this verse promise you?"

He thought for a minute and then said, "That I can ask God in my heart. I can pray and ask Him what to do, and He'll make my paths straight."

I was so proud of that little guy! I could have hugged him!

You know, the more time that I spend teaching little ones the gift of Inductive Bible study, the more I love it.

I am amazed by how many Christian publishers think that they have to dumb down the material in order for children to understand it.

If we'd just get past thinking that we're the one doing all the work, and remember that the Word says that The Holy Spirit is the teacher, our kids would be much better off.

These kiddos had never heard of Precept Ministries. They don't know what inductive means...BUT, they sure did learn a whole lot of Truth from God's Word today...and they had so much fun doing it!

I wish we'd commit, as believers, to spend the hour a week that we have with children in our churches, feeding them on the Word instead of trying to entertain them.

Take away the cheese puffs, and give them the meat of God's Word!

They get it! I promise, they do!

I encourage you, if you're teaching kids....just give them a chance, by giving them the Word in Spirit and Truth...and then make up some fun quiz games to cement that which you've just taught them.

You'll be amazed, in short order, how much God writes on their little hearts.

Below are the verses that we studied today...we started with the 1st one that you see in red, but I just went ahead and included from Luke 1:1 -1:38.

In Him,

Luke 1:1
Inasmuch as many have undertaken to compile an account of the things accomplished among us, Luke 1:2
just as they were handed down to us by those who from the beginning were eyewitnesses and servants of the word,
Luke 1:3
it seemed fitting for me as well, having investigated everything carefully from the beginning, to write {it} out for you in consecutive order, most excellent Theophilus;
Luke 1:4
so that you may know the exact truth about the things you have been taught.
Luke 1:5
In the days of Herod, king of Judea, there was a priest named Zacharias, of the division of Abijah; and he had a wife from the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth.
Luke 1:6
They were both righteous in the sight of God, walking blamelessly in all the commandments and requirements of the Lord.
Luke 1:7
But they had no child, because Elizabeth was barren, and they were both advanced in years.
Luke 1:8
Now it happened {that} while he was performing his priestly service before God in the {appointed} order of his division,
Luke 1:9
according to the custom of the priestly office, he was chosen by lot to enter the temple of the Lord and burn incense.
Luke 1:10
And the whole multitude of the people were in prayer outside at the hour of the incense offering.
Luke 1:11
And an angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing to the right of the altar of incense.
Luke 1:12
Zacharias was troubled when he saw {the angel,} and fear gripped him.
Luke 1:13
But the angel said to him, "Do not be afraid, Zacharias, for your petition has been heard, and your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you will give him the name John.
Luke 1:14
"You will have joy and gladness, and many will rejoice at his birth.
Luke 1:15
"For he will be great in the sight of the Lord; and he will drink no wine or liquor, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit while yet in his mother's womb.
Luke 1:16
"And he will turn many of the sons of Israel back to the Lord their God.
Luke 1:17
"It is he who will go {as a forerunner} before Him in the spirit and power of Elijah, TO TURN THE HEARTS OF THE FATHERS BACK TO THE CHILDREN, and the disobedient to the attitude of the righteous, so as to make ready a people prepared for the Lord."
Luke 1:18
Zacharias said to the angel, "How will I know this {for certain?} For I am an old man and my wife is advanced in years."
Luke 1:19
The angel answered and said to him, "I am Gabriel, who stands in the presence of God, and I have been sent to speak to you and to bring you this good news.
Luke 1:20
"And behold, you shall be silent and unable to speak until the day when these things take place, because you did not believe my words, which will be fulfilled in their proper time."
Luke 1:21
The people were waiting for Zacharias, and were wondering at his delay in the temple.
Luke 1:22
But when he came out, he was unable to speak to them; and they realized that he had seen a vision in the temple; and he kept making signs to them, and remained mute.
Luke 1:23
When the days of his priestly service were ended, he went back home.
Luke 1:24
After these days Elizabeth his wife became pregnant, and she kept herself in seclusion for five months, saying,
Luke 1:25
"This is the way the Lord has dealt with me in the days when He looked {with favor} upon {me,} to take away my disgrace among men."
Luke 1:26
Now in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city in Galilee called Nazareth,
Luke 1:27
to a virgin engaged to a man whose name was Joseph, of the descendants of David; and the virgin's name was Mary.
Luke 1:28
And coming in, he said to her, "Greetings, favored one! The Lord {is} with you."
Luke 1:29
But she was very perplexed at {this} statement, and kept pondering what kind of salutation this was.
Luke 1:30
The angel said to her, "Do not be afraid, Mary; for you have found favor with God.
Luke 1:31
"And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall name Him Jesus.
Luke 1:32
"He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David;
Luke 1:33
and He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and His kingdom will have no end."
Luke 1:34
Mary said to the angel, "How can this be, since I am a virgin?"
Luke 1:35
The angel answered and said to her, "The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; and for that reason the holy Child shall be called the Son of God.
Luke 1:36
"And behold, even your relative Elizabeth has also conceived a son in her old age; and she who was called barren is now in her sixth month.
Luke 1:37
"For nothing will be impossible with God."
Luke 1:38
And Mary said, "Behold, the bondslave of the Lord; may it be done to me according to your word." And the angel departed from her.


Laura said...

Thanks for this post about our responsibility as parents to the teaching of the Word to our children. There is always a time to include our children in our study... I love when I'm at my desk and N comes in and says "Mommy, are you doing your Bible study?"

It is vital to me that they see me with the Bible open and books and papers everywhere. Of course it would be easier to do my study at night without interruption when they've gone to bed, but they need to see me study (and study hard.) Not just open the Word for a verse, which we do, but also the study into the Word that takes time and serious effort.

I want them to know the tools of inductive study and that it's not difficult, it's something everyone can do. I've shown them how I use the Strong's concordance to look up the Hebrew/Greek definition of a word to know the original meaning of the English words I'm reading. It's so important, not just for me but for them, to spend intentional time talking about what we read and what the Word says.

Thanks for the reminder to keep including my kids in our Bible study. If I wait until they want to do it, I might never get the chance to tell them the wonderful gift of the Savior.

Love ya!

Jesica said...

Great thoughts, Laura.

I believe that we will be accountable before God one day, and that He will ask us about what we chose to do with His Word, in our kids' lives.

I hope to be found faithful in this.

I know you do, too!


Heather said...

My precepts leader sent me your blog today for one of your recent posts. But I had to comment here and say how blessed I was to read about how you are incorporating the principles with even little children. I'm inspired to pull my children in even more as I study His Word! :)