Thursday, August 23, 2012

Analogy For Looking at the "Big Picture" of Scripture

I think this will be a great "children's sermon" idea or a homeschool Bible lesson. But it is not just for kids... we all need this reminder.

Props needed (to really make this lesson come to life): world map, globe, or both and a Bible

I will write this like I am speaking to my kids (and I am speaking to American pupils. You will have to change the story according to your geographic location).

Can any of you children point to the Pacific Ocean for me? (Pick one child. He/She will most likely point to the West coast of America) You are right, Rebecca. That is the Pacific Ocean... but only part of it. Did you know that the Pacific Ocean wraps all the way around the globe (or on a flat map "appears on the far right side")? We usually look at the Pacific Ocean as being just off of the coast of America, but it is also just off of the coast of Japan as well. In fact, if we had a little boy or girl from Japan here, he or she would probably have pointed to the Pacific Ocean being right near Japan.

Here is another question for you - who can show me where the Atlantic Ocean is? (Pick one child. If the child is older and intuitive, he/she might have learned from the previous answer where to point more accurately). That is right, Nelson. The Atlantic Ocean is East of the United States... but that is only part of the Atlantic Ocean. Children, do you know that the Atlantic Ocean stretches between America and Europe and even over to Africa? In fact, if we had a little boy or girl here from Africa, he or she would probably have pointed to the Atlantic Ocean as being right near the coast of Africa.

You see, children, most of us understand the World from what we can see and what we know best. We live in America, so we understand where places are in the world as it relates to America. This is completely normal. However, we always need to be learning to look at the whole picture, the "Big picture." One of the ways that we will learn to see the "big picture" is to read history books. For example - if you read the history of World War 2, especially about Pearl Harbor Day, then you will realize that Japan and America both have a border on the Pacific Ocean. Or, if you read about how Christopher Columbus and others went searching for a "New World," then you will better understand that Europe and America both have borders on the Atlantic Ocean.

Now, children, this lesson is not just about world geography - though I hope you did learn something new today. This lesson is also about how we read our Bible. Our Bible is divided into two big categories: The Old Testament and the New Testament. The Old Testament tells stories and history from the Beginning of the World (or "Creation") until about 400 years before Jesus came to the Earth. Then, the New Testament is the Story of Jesus being born, dying, and coming back to life. Actually, both the Old and New Testament are One Big Story about Jesus. All of the stories in the Old Testament and New Testament are about how God loves people so much that He sent His Son to die for us. 

Just like with the globe, we sometimes forget to look at "the big picture." Sometimes we forget to read the Old Testament. Sometimes we forget to read the New Testament. But, we need to read all of the Bible, because that is the only way we can make sense of the whole Story of God's Love for us.

So, children, next time you are looking at the map or a globe, I hope you will remember that we want to try to understand "the big picture" of how much God loves us. And, to do that we need to look at the whole Bible and read from both The Old Testament and The New Testament.

Let's pray - Father, Thank you that You love each and every child here so much that You sent Your Son, Jesus, to die for their sins. Please help us to remember to read all of the Bible. Thank You for giving us Your Holy Spirit to help us understand what we read so that we can see the Big Picture of how much You love us. In Jesus Name, Amen.

No comments: