Jesus Heals Blind Bartimaeus (Mark 10) - Ideas and Resources

Activities based on the metaphor of "sight" (Spiritual Sight) for Teens

(very applicable to children as well)

 

The story of Jesus healing the blind man came up in a teen class taught by my daughter at our church. Here is the basic "activity" she and I came up with, and I have no doubt it is very applicable to children's classes as well.

 

After the Bible Study...  We explained to the kids that we were going to do a series of activities that work on the metaphor of "sight".  We also reminded them that the first sermon Jesus every preached was Isaiah's proclamation of sight to the blind.  Jesus healed several 'blind' people, but did not make the curing of physical blindness his main work. Like many miracles, they were "signs" ...teaching devices. Yes, he was sometimes moved by compassion, but most healings were occasions for teaching. Jesus frequently said, let those with ears hear, and eyes, see. Spiritual sight was what he was driving at.  Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God. Etc etc.

 

This is a sketch of what took place. Plenty of teacher patter and presentation to be filled in by you.

  1. Tell the story of the blind men trying to describe an elephant. (If you're unfamiliar, here it is in brief: One grabs the trunk, another grabs a leg, another the tail, and each describes what they think an elephant is -based on their limited grasp of the elephant.).  The point: trying to describe God or figure out life is a lot like the blind men trying to describe the elephant. Ask: How could they have come up with a better description?  Answer: By sharing what they knew.  This is what church does. This is also what Jesus did, helping "the blind" (metaphor for all of us) "see" God and the things of his Kingdom.
  2. Continuing with this metaphor, students take turns being blindfolded and being given various objects to examine. The last object is a Bible. Now the blindfolded student will probably figure out that it is a book, and probably the Bible given where they are!   But push them to tell you what's in it, or to find something in it. The point: we need "eyes that see" to read the Bible. To some people it is just words, but here at church we develop spiritual eyesight.
  3. Pass around a pair of glasses that have been heavily fogged. You can use goggles or a cheap pair of sunglasses which you have sprayed with hairspray. Pass around scripture, pass around a picture of Jesus, pass around a picture of Jesus on the cross....   making observations as you do about how we all need our eyesight 'corrected' to understand Christ, scripture.  Who gives us this correction?  Church can help, but it is God who gives "sight to the blind".
  4. What clouds our vision?   At this point in the discussion, we gave each student HEIR OWN strip of white cloth to make their own blindfold. Put them on and pass around some more objects, asking the question, "what kinds of things "cloud" a person's eyesight? "Gets in the way of seeing what's really there?"     Quickly we had them lay their blindfolds on the table and use permanent pens to WRITE on their blindfolds some of the things we were talking about:  lazyness, coldness, uncaring attitudes, thinking its not important, being selfish.  We came up with examples for each thing that contributed to our spiritual blindness, WITH real life examples, then had them write them on their blindfold. 

With the older kids, we also interjected the idea of the "blind leading the blind"....which is a good concept for how a child's peers can try to steer them away from proper behavior, or from believing in God.

 

These blindfolds went home, and we told the kids that we didn't expect them to wear them, but hang in their room, or perhaps stick it in their sock drawer to become an occasional surprise reminder.

 

<>< Neil

Blind Bartimaeus

Art Workshop

 

Summary of Lesson Activities:

Students will either create a banner or weaving using various types of fabric which represent different parts of the story (a story memory weaving/banner).


Objectives:

  • know that Jesus healed blind men and that today's story is found in the New Testament book Luke 18:35-43 (Blind Beggar),
  • and know that there are also accounts of Jesus healing the blind in Matthew 20:29-34 (Jesus Heals Two Blind Men), Mark 10:46-52 (Jesus Heals Blind Bartimaeus) and John 9:1-41 (Jesus Heals Man Born Blind)
  • will hear that God can be glorified in any circumstances
  • be able to retell the story of the blind man in their own words

Key Scripture: 

“Jesus said to him, Receive your sight, your faith has healed you.” Luke 18:42 (Blind Bartimaeus)


Leader Preparation:

  • Read the scripture ahead of time.
  • Gather the materials.

Materials: 

  • bibles,
  • scripture signs,
  • index cards,
  • pencils,
  • symbols,
  • sticks,
  • fabric strips (see list below),
  • coins,
  • beads,
  • blind boxes with objects (see list below).

 

Note: You will want to have many different types of fabric colors and textures for students to select from and create their their Memory Banner or Memory Weaving.

 

The banner can be as simple as gluing the fabric cut interesting shapes IN THE STORY ORDER (see story order below).  

 

For older students, you could have them weave their chosen strips of fabric (in story order). To create a simple loom to weave the fabric strips, tie two dowel rods about 8 inches apart and 8" wide using hemp twine as the vertical ties in the loop. The fabric is then woven in horizontally through the twine.



Presentation

 

Opening-Welcome and Lesson Introduction:

Greet the children and introduce yourself.

 

Open with a prayer. 

  • Ask the kids to open their bibles to the New Testament.
  • Remind the kids that the Old Testament tells us what happened before Jesus was born. New Testament tells what happens after Jesus was born. It is toward the back of the bible.
  • Have them find the book of Luke. Ask them to find chapter 18,verse 35. (This is sometimes time consuming. One of our long term goals is to help the children learn how to look things up in their bibles, so help them find what they are looking for rather than just doing it for them).
  • Tell the kids you will be reading the story to them, but to keep their bibles open to the passage, because you will be going back to it.
  • Read the story.
  • Say (in your own words): Our memory verse for this lesson is the something that Jesus said in this story.
    Week One: show the scripture sign, say the verse, then ask the kids to say it with you. Pass out the index cards, and ask them to write it down so they can practice it at home.
    Week Two and Three: Ask if anyone remembers the verse, giving them a chance to tell it to you. Show the scripture sign, say the verse, then ask the kids to say it with you.

Dig-Main Content and Reflection:

  • Say (in your own words). Today’s art project will use symbols to tell the story we just heard. (Be sure the kids know what symbols are: things that represent other things, or remind us of things).
  • Before we start, let’s look at some things and you can tell me what they mean to you.
    Show these objects, in any order:
    A Valentine, a US flag, an Easter egg, a cross, a shamrock, firecracker, wedding rings, lightning bolt, turkey, wise men, globe, Uncle Sam hat. Ask the kids what they represent.
  • Say (in your own words): We will be using DIFFERENT TYPES OF FABRIC to represent the different verses in the story. I have put some different types of fabric in this box, take one and tell me what you think it reminds you of, what does it symbolize?
    (The boxes will have a baby blanket, a teddy bear, a potato sack, denim). 
    As they feel the fabric they might guess what it is.
  • Say (in your own words): I’m going to read you the story again, but this time you're going to select from fabric and other objects to represent things and idea in the story as I read it. I will read the verses and give you some time to select the type of fabric/object that you think represents the idea. Then we will set it aside and move on to the next verse.

    After I've read all the verses, you'll then start WEAVING (or gluing if you're making a banner) your fabrics KEEPING THE ORDER you selected them in, so that each fabric/object can remind you of the verse in the story and let you retell the story to the class.

A Blind Beggar Receives His Sight (LUKE 18:35-43) 

35As Jesus (white silky cloth) approached Jericho (palm or fruit cloth), a blind man (heavy black cloth) was sitting by the roadside (brown beads) begging (coin or fruit beads)


36When he heard the crowd (very loud cloth) going by, he asked what was happening. 

 

37They told him, "Jesus of Nazareth (white silky cloth) is passing by." 

 

38He called out, "Jesus, Son of David (white silky cloth), have mercy (soft flannel) on me!" 

 

39Those who led the way rebuked (rough fabric) him and told him to be quiet, but he shouted all the more, "Son of David (white silky cloth), have mercy on me!" 

 

40Jesus (white silky clot)h stopped and ordered the man to be brought to him. When he came near, Jesus (white silky cloth) asked him, 

 

41"What do you want me to do for you?" 
"Lord (white silky cloth), I want to see," he replied. 

 

42Jesus (white silky cloth) said to him, "Receive your sight; your faith has healed you (lace)."

 

43Immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus (white silky cloth), praising God(shimmery gold fabric). When all the people saw it, they also praised God (shimmery gold fabric).

Say (in your own words): Let’s talk for a minute about the things I showed you and see if you remember what the represent. (Show in whatever order you prefer, giving them the reasons behind each cloth or object as you talk about them).

  • Beggar represented by heavy black cloth (the beggars lived in darkness)

  • Large brown beads represent the dirt road.

  • Coin beads represent money Food beads represents the food begged for.

  • Jesus represented by white silky cloth (Jesus was not spotted by sin, he was pure)

  • Jericho represented by palm or fruits (Jericho is a tropical city, called the city of palms in the book of Deuteronomy. Citrus fruits grow abundantly there)

  • Noise of crowd represented by a very loud cloth (this cloth is very colorful and exciting. The crowd was probably very excited to be traveling with Jesus)

  • Beggars cry for mercy represented by soft flannel (the beggar was crying for compassion and kindness, represented by the softness of the flannel)

  • Rebuke represented by a rough fabric (it feels bad when someone rebukes you…you may need to explain rebuke, depending on the age group)

  • Jesus granting request represented by lace (The solid/sheer design of lace represents our faith…sometimes it is so strong and and sometime it is very weak and fragile)

  • Jewels represent the power of Christ

  • Praising God represented by a shimmery gold fabric (Gold is the color of kings).


Say (in your own words): I want you to make a banner to help you remember this story. Use a strip of each piece of fabric and tie it onto the stick. You can also tie the beads into the banner. Put the fabric in the order that will help you tell the story. (They can use as much fabric as they like, but encourage them to use at least one of each type of fabric. Some of them may want to use many strips of the Jesus fabric, for example, because Jesus is named several times). Assist them as needed. If you have an early finisher, ask them to retell the story using their banner.

 

Closing:

End with a prayer.


 

A lesson posted by member "Psalm 77".

 

A representative of Rotation.org reformatted this post to improve readability.

 

Videos (and/or Clips)

 

 Jesus Heals Blind Bartimaeus (Mark 10:46-52)

  1. "Treasures in Heaven" (Nest Learning Series)
    Includes story of Zacchaeus, Rich Man, Jesus with Children and Blind Bartimaeus.  30 Minutes
  2. "Ready Aim Fire" (#4 Story Keepers Series)
    2nd bible story retold – Helena tells Ben & his friends the story to encourage them (clip).  
  3. "Read and Share Bible" DVD Vol. 3, by Gwen Ellis, Nelson, 2009, 9781400313051.
    Story #10:  Jesus’ Life – A Coin in a Fish; A Blind Man Sees, Lazarus is Alive (length 3 mins. total??).  Ages 3-7.
  4. "Rome Alone" (Friends & Hero’s Series).
    (Clip - clips are done in 3D animation of the bible story)

 

Jesus Heals Two Blind Men (Matthew 20:29-34)

  1. "Matthew" Visual Bible DVD, Randolf Productions, 9780967439723. 
    DVD - Event #22.

 

Jesus Heals a Blind Beggar (Luke 18:35-43)

  1. “Jesus” staring Brain Deacon, inspirational films, 0880409700097.  (This movie is also included in the “Jesus, Fact or Fiction” DVD).
    Jesus Heals the Blind Man – Event #37 or Chapter #19.

We are currently teaching the story of Blind Bartimaeus  and I had to share some of the ideas our science team did.  

First the teachers  discussed all our 5 senses:  touch, seeing hearing, smelling and tasting .  

For the younger children they made booklets for the 5 senses. On one side of the card was  a picture of the senses like an ear, nose,  finger/hand, mouth and eye, on the other side was  the item that they used to identify the sense they used.  For the hearing sense there was a rubber band wrapped around the card and  the kids wrote  down what they heard ..snapping , plucking sound, for smelling there was a double faced piece of tape with cinnamon on it for the kids to smell, for touch there was a piece of foam attached to the card, or you could use sandpaper. for vision there was a piece of reflective foil, and for taste there was a mint choc.. kiss wrapper glued on the card after they ate the candy.  We have a  child who is diabetic and so for this child she used another sense, smelling, to tell what she smelled, (choc. mint ) before she glued the wrapper to the card.   The teachers talked about someone who can't see must use their other senses.  Some of these exercises were done with their eyes closed to reinforce how a blind person uses all their senses. 

For the older kids they talked about the sense of taste and how there is sweet, sour, bitter, and salty sensors on our tongues,  With 4 mystery solutions, Salt water, sugar water, lemon juice, onion juice or tonic water and q tips dipped in the mystery solutions the kids had to guess what was salty, sweet,  sour, and bitter.  Then they mixed some of the flavors together.  The 2nd teacher recorded their impressions. 

The 2nd part to this lesson for the older kids  they used different flavored jelly beans (Ike and Mike) and you had to close your eyes. All the students were given the same colored Jelly bean and they  had to identify the flavor.   A recorder (2nd teacher) wrote down our impressions  and what flavor we thought it was.  We found that color and smell (once the jelly beans was opened) was another way to identify the Jelly bean without actually tasting it.  When our guesses were recorded we were told what the correct flavor was and we were given a 2nd jelly bean of the same flavor and this time we were allowed to see, smell and taste it.  It was a fun exercise in tasting.  

Our song that we are singing is The Blind man  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CFaRT9K2KkY

In the kitchen we are using the sugar cookie idea and decorating eye cookies,  but I ran across another idea, of using M&Ms to write a letter from the Braille  alphabet  on the cookie.

Also from the science room came a braille demonstration with nail heads pounded into wood.

 This week we have a blind woman  coming to talk to the children about what life is like as a blind person.  We happened to have a a vet in our congregation  and I asked her if she took care of any guide dogs  and she DID!  

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