The Day Jesus Died
TEXT: Mark 14:43-49, 53; 15:15-28, 37, 42-47
What a terrible time it was! After we ate the Passover supper together, we walked with Jesus to the Mount of Olives. When we arrived at the place called Gethsemane, Jesus said, "Sit here while I go and pray." He took three of us with Him. When He finished praying, He told us that the person who was going to betray Him was coming.
Right after He said that, a big group of people came to where we were. Some were carrying swords and other weapons. They were looking for Jesus. And who was leading them but Judas, one of Jesus' own disciples! We started to get scared, but Jesus wasn't afraid.
Judas had told the people with him that the person he would kiss was the man they wanted. He walked right up to Jesus, called him Master, and then kissed Him. How sad it was for Jesus to have a friend betray Him. But He already knew Judas would do that.
The people led Jesus away to see the chief priest and the elders of Jerusalem. These men wanted to kill Jesus. But they had a hard time finding a reason to do so because He had done only good. Finally they decided Jesus should die because He said He was the Son of God. They sent Him to the Roman governor, Pilate.
Pilate wanted to let Jesus go. He knew the chief priests and the elders were jealous of Jesus' power. Suddenly he had an idea. Every year the people chose a prisoner to go free. He asked the people who they wanted freed this time, Jesus or Barabbas, a wicked man who had robbed and killed people.
The crowd began to shout, "We want Barabbas!"
Pilate was surprised. He asked the people, "What shall I do with Jesus?"
"Kill Him! Crucify Him!" the crowd yelled louder and louder. Pilate finally gave in.
Jesus was to be crucified. Roman soldiers took Jesus to a nearby room where they made a crown of thorns and placed it on Jesus' head. They laughed and made fun of Him as they beat Him and spit on Him.
Jesus never once fought back. He loved these people.
They led Jesus out of the city to a hill called Calvary. There they nailed His hands and feet to a big cross. Jesus suffered greatly on that cross. He looked up to Heaven and cried out to God His Father, "It is finished." Then He bowed His head and died.
At first I didn't understand why this had happened. But now I know that Jesus suffered and died to take the punishment for the sins of everyone. Now, whoever will tell Jesus that they are sorry for their sins can be forgiven.
This lesson is about the crucifixion of Jesus. As your family begins to think about Easter, let your child help you make popcorn crosses to give to friends or family members as special Easter gifts.
In a saucepan bring 1/2 cup butter, 2 cups brown sugar, and 1 cup light corn syrup to a boil. Stir in 1 (15 ounce) can of condensed milk. Simmer on low heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture comes to a soft-ball stage (235 degrees). Remove from heat and stir in 1 teaspoon of vanilla. Pour over 10 quarts of popped corn, and stir to coat.
When the popcorn is cool enough to handle, have your child butter his hands and form it into crosses. Write Easter messages or Bible verses on small slips of paper. Wrap the popcorn crosses with plastic wrap and enclose a note or verse in each one.