Jesus Died for Us
TEXT: John 19:16-18, 31-34
Micah looked up as his friend Ezra came running down the street. Right away he knew something was wrong. Ezra looked so upset!
"Micah, come quickly!" Ezra cried. His voice was shaking. "I just saw a big crowd of people going toward the gate of the city. I asked someone what was happening. He told me soldiers are taking Jesus away with them!"
Micah jumped up. "Soldiers? What are they going to do with Jesus?" he asked. Micah knew Jesus and loved Him. Like others, he had heard about all the good things Jesus had done. One day he had gone to hear Jesus teach, and had sat right near Jesus' feet. What wonderful words Jesus had spoken! From that day on, Micah realized that Jesus was the promised Messiah, the Son of God. Just a few days before, Micah had watched Jesus ride into Jerusalem on a little donkey. How happy everyone had been that day! So, why would the soldiers have taken Him now?
"The rulers of our country said Jesus has to die, "Ezra panted, out of breath. "They got some people to tell lies about Him. The soldiers are going to crucify Him on that hill outside the city."
Micah could hardly believe he was hearing right. Crucify Jesus? That meant the soldiers were going to nail Jesus to a cross! Jesus had done nothing wrong! Micah knew that. "It must be a mistake," he said to Ezra. "Maybe it was someone else, some bad person."
"Yes, it was Jesus," Ezra said, the tears trickling down his dusty cheeks. "I saw Him myself."
"Oh, no!" Micah began to cry too. "Jesus never did anything bad! He is a good man!"
What sadness filled the hearts of the two boys. Could they do anything to help Jesus? They must find out. But by the time they made their way through the crowds of people, the soldiers already had nailed Jesus to the cross. Two thieves were also being crucified, one on each side of Jesus.
The boys saw Jesus' mother crying nearby. They saw Jesus bleeding from His wounds.
What a terrible time! Micah and Ezra could do nothing to help, but they could not leave. It became dark early in the day, and the people around them were frightened. After a while, Micah and Ezra heard Jesus cry out and saw Him die.
It was a very sad day for Micah and Ezra. They walked home with sad hearts. Why did their wonderful Friend Jesus have to die? Do you know why Jesus had to die? The Bible tells us that God loved us so much that He sent His only Son Jesus to die for all people. If we believe Jesus died for us, and if we give our hearts to Him, we will be saved.
Talk to your child this week about the meaning of the word "forgiveness." Ask how he feels when he has been forgiven for doing something wrong.
A big eraser can be used to illustrate that Jesus' Blood forgives our sins. It takes the spots of sin from our hearts, just like the eraser takes spots off paper. Jesus will forgive us when we ask Him to.
On a large piece of paper, draw an outline of a heart, and let your child write in some things for which forgiveness would be needed. Then let him use the eraser to remove the words from the heart.