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Rotation Title: The Armor of God

Jenks Church Children’s Ministry, Jenks Church of Christ, Jenks OK

Scripture Reference(s): Ephesians 6:10-18

Workshops:

  • Art - children make paper dolls and dress them in armor.
  • Drama - Children make commercials about the armor of God.
  • Bible Skills and Games - Children are introduced to our BASIC (Becoming Awesome Soldiers In Christ) Training concept and play a Bible Quiz Game.
  • Science - Children make a non-newtonian fluid to illustrate the spiritual nature of the battle. (Corn starch and water is a non-newtonian fluid, for example)

Wormy Says:  See Wormy notes below about checking with your pastor about how your church expresses the nature of Evil and the Devil to its children, and the degreee of sensitivity you may need regarding how some parents and leaders feel about military imagery found in this passage and lesson.  ADAPT!  It's great stuff.

Check some of the links below, and consider purchasing an "Armor of God" kit for use during these workshops where the items are brought out for illustration.
Last edited by Luanne Payne
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Armor of God

Art Workshop 

(This could be an interactive/object oriented storytelling workshop as well.)

Summary of Lesson Activities:

Children will verbalize the passage. Those who choose to memorize it may earn a prize from the memory room. Children will make Armor of God figures and commit to putting on the armor every day.


Supplies: 

  • Biblesball
  • Journals
  • Paper dolls
  • Armor pieces
  • Scissors
  • Markers or colored pencil
  • Throw and Tell Ball

 



Lesson Plan


Opening:

[Introduce yourself to children as they enter. Using the “Throw & Tell Ball,” spend about 5 minutes getting to know each other better.(These discussion-ball can be purchased online from various Christian retailers. There are several different versions. One is pictured here.)] 

[Pass out Bibles.] 

The Armor of God is described in Ephesians. Paul the Apostle wrote the book of Ephesians during a time when he was in Rome under house arrest. This arrest allowed him to reside in his own house, and come and go, but required him to be continually chained to a Roman soldier. For this reason, Paul became very knowledgeable about the armor and implements of warfare belonging to the man to which he was chained.

Can I get a volunteer to read Ephesians 6:10-18? [Be prepared to read it yourself.]

Paul says “Put on the full armor of God” twice. He really wanted to point out that it is an all-or-nothing proposition. Paul then explains that the armor allows us to stand against the devil’s schemes. What are the devil’s schemes? (He schemes to tempt us to turn away from God and do wrong.) 

How many times did Paul say "put on the FULL armor of God"?  "Why would you want ALL the armor, and not just some?  Paul says “Put on the full armor of God” twice. He really wants us to remember this.

And Paul tells us who we are fighting against. We are not fighting against flesh and blood - people at school, people in other churches, etc. Who ARE we fighting against? (powers of darkness, Satan) What does that mean? (Allow time for discussion.) 

Editor's Note:  Different churches express the concept of evil/Satan differently, and some parents may be sensitive to teaching their children about a literal devil (or not). Please check with your pastor about the right way for YOUR church.  

Jesus often talked about the evil that comes from within us, the bad choices, the bad intentions and thoughts. How does God's armor protect us from the evil in the world, and what's wrong within each of us?   

In Luke 4, when Jesus was tempted in the wilderness, he remembered scripture. That was his "weapon". How is that different than Paul's armor metaphor?


Dig:


Our art project is to make our journals.
[Pass out journals and people. Pass out markers. Instruct children to decorate their people] Each of you have a journal. This journal will go with you each week for the remainder of the school year. You will take it home at the end of May next year.

Editor's Note:  Here's an ALTERNATE Journal Idea for those not using journaling in their workshops: 

Make a "Manual for the Armor of God".

Begin with a picture/graphic of someone standing in the Armor of God (this could be a coloring page or graphic found by a google search. There are MANY!). As each item is passed around and described, students can either color in that item on their drawing, OR, cut it out in felt and paste it onto the drawing. Then, have them write a description, keywords, and "instructions" for each piece based on your description. 

As we go along, we'll examine each piece of the armor that Paul is describing. We will add a piece of armor at a time and say the part of the verse that goes with it. We will add to our armor and our scripture as we go along.

[Pass out belts. Point to belt.] 

Let’s say the part of the passage that goes with the belt of truth. "Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist." 

[Children should color as you talk.] What do you use a belt for? What happens when you don't use a belt? What does a soldier use a belt for? The Belt is not the most noticeable piece of the armor, however, it is actually the central piece that holds all the rest securely in place. From the belt hung specialized hooks and holders on which to secure the sword as well as any other weapons. The battle shield would also have had a place to rest on the belt. Also on the belt were clips with which to hold the breastplate in its proper place. Even supplies of bread, oil and water were held on the belt!

Paul called this the belt of ‘Truth’. What could he have been referring to? (Allow discussion, but guide students to realize that the truth of God is contained in his word, the Bible, and stands in direct opposition to Satan, who is known as the Father of Lies.)

[Pass out breastplates for children to color.]

This is the breastplate of righteousness. Say the verse with me up to the breastplate. "Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place…"

Each breastplate was custom made for the soldier that wore it. Breastplates were often made very elaborate with additional decorations and polished to a brilliant mirror finish that was blinding to the enemy in the sunshine. Despite its beauty, the breastplate was very functional, protecting the heart and other vital organs from penetration through its metal shell.

What is righteousness? (Allow some discussion) It simply means, “Right standing before God.” Last month, while studying Deuteronomy 6, we learned that the Israelites said, “If we are careful to obey all this law before the LORD our God, as he has commanded us, that will be our righteousness.” Obedience to God, doing what is right allows us to be called righteous. Even though we all mess up and make wrong choices some times, through Christ, our sins don’t count against us, and we are made righteous.

So how does being righteous or making good choices protect our hearts? (Guide the discussion to point out that when we sin it hurts our hearts and our relationships. Being righteous, doing the right things, helps us protect our hearts from getting hurt.) [Teacher note: See James 2.]

[Pass out boots]

Let’s say all the parts so far. Point to your pieces as we mention them. [Don’t allow children to rush it.] "Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace."

What do sandals or boots do for you?  What do they allow you to do, that would be hard barefoot? The sandals of the Roman soldier were not ordinary shoes. Their shoes were really more like boots because they came up around their shins. They consisted of an elaborately cut and laced sandal with layers of metal and leather in the soles. They even had spikes on the bottom of the sole to plant into the ground to keep them from being moved. That is why Paul could say stand firm – it would be hard to move a soldier whose spikes were planted into the soil!

Remember, Gospel means “Good news” – so we are ready to go anywhere because of the good news of peace. We keep the peace by telling others about Christ – how he laid down his life for us and them. Would we need to fight wars if everyone were TRUE Christians? (no!) We would treat each other right even if we disagreed. In our lives, we do not need to fight others – we need to get along and be friends – to bring peace to our school, our home and our churches.

Before we pass out the next piece, let’s review. Remember, point to each piece as we speak about it. "Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace."

[Pass out shields.]

OK, now let’s add the shields to what we have been reciting. "Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one." 

What is a shield for?  What kind of "shields" do you use? 

Scripture tells us that the shield can “extinguish all the flaming arrows of the devil.” The Roman battle shield was a large shield. It looked like the soldier was carrying a leather covered door! Each shield was made of six layers of thick animal hide specially tanned and woven together making them as tough and durable as metal yet relatively light weight. The shields could be soaked in water before battle so that in the event the enemy would rain fiery projectiles on them, the fire would be extinguished on impact.

When Paul says “take on” the shield of faith – he refers to intentionality – you don’t just have it, you take it. We must grab onto our faith. We grow in faith through hearing or reading our Bibles (Romans 10:17). How often do you take on faith?

That brings us to the helmet. [Pass out helmets.]

It is another thing we are to take. Let’s say the passage all together up to the helmet part. "Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation…"

The helmet was the most noticeable piece of armor. It was often ornate, intricately decorated and plumed with brightly dyed feathers or horsehair. The Roman helmet was designed to deflect blows and yet allow the soldier maximum visibility. 

Name some reasons why people wear hats (identity, protection)

The helmet of salvation protects the mind. How? [Guide discussion so children understand if you know that in the end, you will win – you will live in heaven with God. The things that the Devil throws at you in this world – the lies he tries to get you to believe have no force. If you know you win, Satan’s attacks all of a sudden don’t mean very much! If you know you will go to heaven, death isn’t quite so scary! (Isaiah 25:8, 1 Corinthians 15:54, 55)]

OK, we are almost done. We have one more piece of armor to color. 

[Pass out swords.]

This is the last physical piece of armor Paul tells about. Let’s say the whole passage so far. "Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God." 

Is Paul telling us to be ready to stab people?  What is a sword? Is it dull or sharp?  Are you dull or sharp? 

Remember that the scabbard that held the sword hung on the belt of truth. The Bible is the sword. It is the source of truth, and the words that can conquer Satan. Remember how Jesus defeated Satan by saying, “It is written”?

So then, to properly wield the sword, you must be knowledgeable of what the Bible says (particularly the promises and statements of fact) and receive that word into your heart. Keep receiving to the point that your heart begins to overflow out of your mouth, in the power of the Holy Spirit and authority of the Name of Jesus.

Now let’s add the last part and say the whole thing. Point to each piece as we go. "Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people."

Paul concludes by saying: “And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests.” Prayer is not a ritual, it is a conversation. And it is a very good sign of our relationship with God.

How often do you pray?
Do you just ask for things?
Do you include praise and thanksgiving along with your requests?
Do you pray for yourself and your needs along with the needs of others?
(Allow time for discussion.)
 
What would happen to a soldier who never talked to their commander?  
How can you follow God if you don't talk to him?

Now it’s time for your person, and you to put on the whole armor of God.

How do we put on the Armor of God? [Ask a volunteer to show a piece of armor and how to put it on. For example: Breastplate of Righteousness – I can put it on by choosing to do right and making good choices. Helmet of Salvation – I can put it on by being baptized (or by choosing to believe in my salvation). There may be several right answers. Give everyone a chance to participate.]

Why is it important for Christians to wear the Armor of God every day? (to avoid temptation, to follow God’s laws, to love others, to spread God’s live to others, etc.) How many of you will put your armor on tomorrow? How about every day?


Reflection:

[If there is time, discuss a time when the students wore their armor and defeated Satan’s temptations. Be prepared to share one of your own experiences. Each person can start out, “I wore the ________ when I…” Give everyone a chance to participate.]

[Close in prayer thanking God for our armor and asking God to help us fight and win the battle against Satan.]

References:
https://tgm.org/the-whole-armor-of-god/


A lesson by Staci Woodruff from: Jenks Church of Christ


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The Armor of God

Drama Workshop

Lesson Objectives:

Children will understand that we are in a spiritual battle of good vs. evil.Children will also understand that just like the pieces of physical armor work together to protect the wearer, the pieces of our spiritual armor work together to protect the Christian. Children will verbalize the passage, and those who choose to memorize it may earn a prize from the memory room.


Set up video camera on tripod.

Supplies:

  • Question Ball
  • TV
  • Bibleman video clip on DVD
  • Video Camera and tripod (Cords to allow viewing on the TV would be best.)
  • Pieces of protective gear (Hockey and/or football gear is great. Mix it up though so it is not all one sport but an eclectic collection of protective gear.)
  • Armor of God pieces (Poster or plastic pieces)
  • Bibles (one per student)
  • Paper and pencils (optional)

 



Lesson Plan


Opening:

Introduce yourself to children as they enter. Using the “Question Ball,” spend about 5 minutes “getting to know” the kids to allow time for those who are coming in late.

Show the kids some different kinds of protective wear. Raincoat, football jersey, shoulder pads, soccer shoes and shin guard. Point out several individual pieces. Discuss how each piece might protect the wearer.

You are really smart! This knowledge will come in handy over the next few months. This year our overall theme for Kingdom Adventures is the Armor of God. You have all volunteered in God’s army! Thank you! As your new Drill Saergent, it is my pleasure to get your training started. Do any of you have war experience? (Kids will probably say No the first week, but may say yes in later weeks.)

Editor's Note:  Some in your church may be uncomfortable with the "war" and "army" imagery that comes straight from Paul, and is familiar in some traditions. As well, some traditions de-emphasize Satan as an entity, preferring to teach about "evil".  

Discuss it with your leaders and consult with your pastor. 

Alternately, you might call it BATTLE, or STRUGGLE to RESIST EVIL and DO GOOD. 

We need to get you trained and into battle as soon as possible. Because you are new recruits, it might be helpful for you to know that you are joining the most powerful army in the world! You have NOTHING to worry about. First, let’s talk about our defenses. We have looked at some protective items already. In the army however, all of this stuff is pretty much useless. We will be using the Armor of God. Watch this clip and repeat with me as one of our soldiers puts on his armor.

Dig:

[Make sure the children can all see the TV screen. Watch the 1 min. clip from Bibleman to show the sequence of Bibleman putting on the amour of God. Encourage the children to repeat aloud each item.]

We will be learning this passage this month. All of you who choose to memorize it can get a prize from the memory room. Let’s read it from the Bible. [Ask for a volunteer, but be prepared to read it yourself.]

Read Ephesians 6:10-18.

Did you notice the passage tells us what kind of battles we will be facing? What kind of battles? (Spiritual, not against flesh and blood.) We are not told to fight against our neighbor! Turn to your neighbor and say, “I’m not fighting against you!”

But we do have an enemy! We have an enemy who wants to steal away everything God wants us to have. Only it’s not a battle we can see. Our enemy is Satan - and Satan lives in the invisible world of the spirit. Even though we can’t see him, Satan is very real. And he wants nothing more than to take us away from God.

And Satan is sneaky. He will use every trick to get us to turn away from God.

What are some spiritual battles kids your age face today? Let’s brainstorm some of the spiritual battles someone might face today. (Tempted to disobey parents, getting angry and fighting at school, feeling like no one loves them, etc.) [If kids cannot think of anything, prompt kids to think of last year’s lessons about the Fruit of the Spirit – and the opposite of the Fruit. When they are tempted to do the opposite – that is a spiritual battle. Try to keep things general here, as we will be discussing their personal battles later.]

As an AWESOME SOLDIER of God, You don’t have to be afraid of Satan - but you have to be ready to fight him! And so, like a great warrior, you need to put on your armor. And because your enemy is a spirit, God has given you spiritual armor.

So put on the whole Armor of God!
[Show armor of God, discuss each piece and how it protects in Spiritual battles.]

Belt of Truth – Where does a belt go? (Around your waist) What does it do? (Hold up your pants – in armor, it holds your weapons) What is truth? (Allow some discussion.) God is real. God loves you, and Jesus died for your sins. God is on your side - that is the Truth! Hold on to the truth, and like a good tight belt, the truth will hold you up and keep you strong when Satan attacks. It will be the thing to which you can anchor all your weapons.

Breastplate of Righteousness- Where does the Breastplate go? (On your chest) It guards your heart. Putting on the Breastplate of Righteousness means doing what is right and good. That way, Satan won’t have anything to grab onto to worm his way into your heart. You will be able to stand straight and tall, with your head held high.

Gospel of Peace (on your feet) - If you are wearing peace, will you be fighting with your neighbor? (No) If you are wearing peace, will you pick fights with your parents or your teachers? (No) If you are NOT wearing peace, and you ARE fighting with someone, can you tell them the Gospel, the Good News of Christ? (No) So when you wear the Gospel of peace on your feet, you are able to go anywhere God sends you to spread the Gospel.

Shield of Faith – What does our passage say the shield does for us? (Allows us to extinguish the flaming arrows of Satan.) When Satan causes bad things to happen to us or around us, our faith keeps us from being harmed spiritually.

Helmet of Salvation – What does the helmet protect? (your head) When you KNOW you are saved, Satan’s schemes don’t hurt as much. If you were going to war and you knew without a doubt that your side would win, would it be easy to go into battle? (yes) Why? (Allow some discussion) Your helmet of salvation protects your thoughts – we can KNOW we will win over Satan in the end because we can be sure of our salvation.

Sword of the Spirit – God has given us a weapon to fight back against Satan’s lies and accusations. What is our weapon? (God’s Word, the Bible.) God’s Word can cut Satan’s lies to pieces. Use God’s Word to fight Satan just like Jesus did when Satan tempted him in the desert. The words of the Bible are your sword.

Now that we know what this armor is used for, let’s use this knowledge to pretend we are making a commercial to sell this armor to other soldiers. What advertising words do you know that could be used to describe this gear and how it works? [Brainstorm ideas for superlatives that they have heard used in commercials: New, Save, Safety, Proven, Love, Discover, Guarantee, Health, Results, You, Awesome, Huge, Saving, Super, Deluxe, Awesome, Heavy-Duty, etc.]

Video Activity: 

Divide the kids into small groups, giving a piece of armor to each group. Each of our groups is going to come up with a commercial for their armor piece.

Your commercial should answer one or more of these questions:
Who can use it?
What is it? Use lots of exciting words like the ones we listed just now!
When can it be used?

How much does it cost? 

What would happen if you didn't have it?
Where can we get it?
Why would we want it?
How does it work? Demonstrate it, or tell it!

I will give you a few minutes to decide what to say. It needs to be less than a minute long. 30 seconds is best! [Give them a few minutes to decide on a 20-30 second commercial for it. They can include a demonstration of how it works or some words about its deluxe features and how it will save you in battle.] 

Commerical Suggestions: 

One of the Commercials can be about "the cost" of God's Armor:

What is the PRICE for getting God's Armor?  What must we GIVE UP to WIN PEACE, to INCREASE FAITH, to WALK STRONG WITH THE LORD?  Come up a with a list. 

We must give up selfishness, pride, impulses to do harm, being unloving, unforgiving. We must give up thinking we are better than others. We must give up thinking we don't need God's help.  Kids can walk by the camera pretending to be each of these things. 

Another Commercial can be about all the things the armor protects us from. A student on camera wears the armor, while off camera, various things that have been labeled, are thrown at the person wearing the armor, or stuck out at them on a spear. Or, actors can walk by the soldier and hurl an insult/lie at them, to which the soldier reacts by holding up their shield while the narrator responses.   

God's Armor protects you from feeling worthless.  When someone walks by you and says, "You're a worm" (said the passerby). Don't believe it!  The shield of truth tells you "God loves you "


[See modifications section!]

[Remind the kids to use excited voices and humor as they do in commercials. Walk around the groups helping as needed.]

[Keep an eye on time! Allow plenty of time (2-3 minutes for each group) for each group to present their commercial of their product. Video the commercials.]

[After video recording all the commercials, play them back for the group if possible.]

Reflection:

We have had some fun today discussing the Armor of God. Tell me again, why do we need it? (To fight Satan, spiritual battles.) How do we get this armor? (From God, his word, his spirit!)

Someone read Ephesians 6:18 again.

We wrap all this armor in prayer. Since it is part of our protection, let’s close in prayer.

End with Prayer inviting each student to thank God for one piece of armor, and ask for God's help to always remember to wear it.

Modifications for Younger Soldiers: 

Help each group get started by introducing their product with a typical voice over. and have them ACT OUT the lines in the commercial. Have some teens helping you. 

“Are you tired of…, 

Not knowing the right thing to say?

Do you feel the slings and arrows of mean people attacking your heart?
Does your walk with God make your feet hurt?

Well have we got the product for you!” The kids take it from there. Let the kids describe or demonstrate their product and how it is going to save them. You can make up a little intro for each piece of gear in your armor.

Modifications for Older Soldiers: Assign someone to introduce the product. You may also hand out your prepared voice-over introductions and let the kids read it or they can make up their own.


References:

http://www.kirkofkildaire.org/...ostlesPlayhouse.html
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YEKwrI5MYIM Bible man full armor sequence
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v...ksBg&feature=related  VBS Video-Take Your Stand
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zWxeaikIY9s Go Fish Video - Armor of God


A Commercial Script example:
(Speakers take turns, changing with each line)

1. Do you have trouble with armor that doesn’t do the job? Does the typical armor just not work for you? Is it too heavy? Too awkward? Too big? (add your own ideas) Too _________________________?

2. Well, we have a solution for you!

3. It’s God’s armor. That’s right, the armor of God!

4. God’s (Armor piece) can _____________________________________________________________.

5. God’s armor is (use some descriptive words to describe what it is for) _____________________________________________________________.

6. So, next time you get into trouble with (name some kind of trouble or challenge you might get into) _____________________________________.

7. Remember: Rely on God’s armor and get it today at _______________________.

8. God’s armor is always ready and available wherever you go!


A lesson by Staci Woodruff from: Jenks Church of Christ

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

Last edited by Luanne Payne

The Armor of God

Bible Skills and Games


Lesson Objectives:

  • Children will be introduced to the BASIC Training concept.
  • Children will understand that the Bible is given to us for training.
  • Children will play the Bible Quiz Game to review Bible knowledge.

Supplies: 

  • Armor of God Poster
  • Bibles (one per student)
  • Game show buzzer device OR tennis ball
  • Game Questions Sheet
  • Silly game show host costume
  • Small prizes (a piece of candy or zany bands, etc. from prize box)
  • BIG FAT RUBBERBANDS ( to go on wrist in final activity)
  • Fine point sharpies

Lesson Plan

[Introduce yourself to children as they enter. Using the “Throw & Tell Ball,” spend about 5 minutes “getting to know” the kids to allow time for those who are coming in late.]

Dig:


"Welcome to today's BIBLE QUIZ SHOW!"


[Speak enthusiastically, as if introducing someone on a TV show.] Thank you all for coming today to BQS, the only Bible Quiz Show going on right here, right now! Today’s game is sponsored by Debby’s Deliriously Delicious Desserts. Drop on by and try a pie!

And now, your fabulous host, Mr. Billy-Bob Bible Boy! (Or Mrs. Bobbie-Jo Bible Belle)[no one shows up.]
Um… Er… Your amazingly talented host, Mr. Billy-Bob Bible Boy! (Or Mrs. Bobbie-Jo Bible Belle) [again, no one shows up.]
Excuse me.. um… [Leave room and quickly don costume. From outside yell, “And now, your host, Mr. Billy-Bob Bible Boy!” Or, “And now, your host, Mrs. Bobbie-Jo Bible Belle!” Run back into room as Billy-Bob or Bobbie-Jo.]

[As show host, ask for volunteers to be contestants. Have the two contestants face each other on either side of the small table. Use buzzer system or explain that after you read the question, the first person to grab the tennis ball gets to answer the question. If the answer is incorrect, the other player may try. Use questions provided and/or make up your own. See Modifications section.]

After each question, change contestants. Allow everyone to participate. After a 10-15 minutes, or when all questions are used, end game.

That was awesome! You all know your Bibles! 

[Pass out a prize to each student and move into next section.]

Have a volunteer read 2 Timothy 3:16, 17.

What does this passage say the Bible is for? (Teaching, rebuking, correcting and training)

Ask: Have you ever been in training? [If no or no answer, ask if they have ever trained their dog or cat to do something.] What is that like? (Allow any answer.) Usually training involves learning how to do or use something new, and learning how to react in certain situations (like a firefighter). You can get training for sports, for a new job, or to join the military.

Now I want you to LOOK at the pieces of armor in Ephesians 6:10-18, and imagine that the person wearing them are IN TRAINING as Paul said to Timothy.  They train us to pay attention to certain things, to do certain things:  What does Ephesisans 6 TRAIN you to expect and do?

Belt of Truth. The Bible trains us in becoming people of truth, knowing the Truth of God, telling the Truth, etc. 

Breastplate of Righteousness. The Bible trains us to make good choices, right decisions and be “right living” before God. 

Feet Fitted with Peace. The Bible trains us to have God’s peace even when things are not peaceful around us. And the Bible helps us to be peaceful and not fight. 

Shield of Faith. The Bible trains us to live by faith, trusting and believing God instead of Satan. 

Helmet of Salvation. The Bible trains us to walk in the assurance of our salvation. 

Sword of the Spirit. The Bible trains us to use God’s Word effectively to advance the Kingdom of God.

The Bible wants to TRAIN US to be God's Children, and PROTECT US from Evil. That is why it is important to know more and more about it. Our fun game helped us learn new things about the Bible. The more we know what the Bible says, the better we can use our Armor of God.

[Have a volunteer read vs. 12 again.]

This verse reminds us that we are not fighting against each other, but against the spiritual forces of Satan. Even kids have to fight him. Did you know that?  We all fight spiritual battles. Even the Apostle Paul said he struggled with the things he DID NOT want to do!

What some wrong or bad things you might be tempted to do? (not clean my room when mom or dad asks, cheat on a test, steal candy from a store, steal a drink from the café, lie, say mean things, etc.) These are spiritual battles!  And the Bible reminds us how to WIN THEM. 

Say: We can't go around wearing real armor, but we can wear REMINDERS. One of my favorite reminders is wearing a Rubberband on my wrist.  

Do This:

Give each student one of the BIG FAT RUBBER BANDS.

Stretch it about two-times wide on a BOOK.

Now use your fine point sharpie marker to right down the KEY WORDS from Ephesians 6: truth, righteousness, peace, faith, assurance, Spirit. 

When you unstretch the rubberband, the words will shrink!  But you can pull them to remind yourself of what you need to win spiritual battles. 

Modifications for Younger Soldiers:
In Bible Quiz Game, use multiple choice answers or “phone a friend” type options if younger children need help.

Younger children may need more help understanding how the Armor “works” and can apply to their lives. It is hard for some of the younger children (who are more concrete) to really understand doing wrong. Use guided conversation to get the point across.

Modifications for Older Soldiers:
In Bible Quiz Game, older children can also look up specific verses. The contestants grab Bibles, look up verse then grab the ball. The first contestant to grab the ball wins the round and can read the verse aloud.

When discussing applying the Armor to our lives, older students can make it more personal, and tell of a specific temptation they have faced or are facing currently, and how the Armor can help them fight the battle.


References:
Take It Home ©2008 Gospel Light
(I know I got the idea for the game from somewhere but I can't find it now. It may have been in a book we have. Sorry! I know I modified it greatly, and basically just used a part of the introduction for some humor. ~Staci)


A lesson by Staci Woodruff from: Jenks Church of Christ

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

Last edited by Rotation.org Lesson Forma-teer

The Armor of God

Science Workshop

Summary of Lesson Activities:
Children will understand the real, yet intangible (spiritual) nature of Satan’s attacks.  Children will demonstrate how the armor of God protects the Christian from Satan’s attacks.


Supplies:

  • Armor of God Poster
  • Bibles (one per student)
  • Throw & Tell Ball
  • lab coats (optional)

  
Balloon Experiments

  • Funnel
  • 3 Balloons
  • Straight Pin
  • Candle (including Candle Holder)
  • Lighter
  • Tape
  • Basin & Towel
  • Water (enough to fill one balloon, divided into the 7 cups)
  • 7 cups (labeled: Belt of Truth; Breastplate of Righteousness; Gospel of Peace; Shield of Faith; Helmet of Salvation; Sword of the Spirit; Prayer in the Spirit)

  
Cornstarch Experiment

  • Cups (at least 8 ounce, one per student, filled with ¼ cup water)
  • Cups (at least 4 ounce, one per student, filled with ¼ cup cornstarch)
  • Extra cornstarch (1-2 cups, as needed for correct consistency)
  • Extra water (1-2 cups, as needed for correct consistency)
  • Plastic spoons (one per student)
  • Paper plates (heavy duty, one per student)

Advance Preparation Requirements

  • Read scripture.
  • Gather materials.
  • Do all experiments yourself prior to class so your comfortable with working with the balloons and with the corn starch experiment.
  • Set out all supplies on your worktable.
  • Have the towel laid out with a basin on top for when you need to break the water filled balloon.


Lesson Plan

Opening:
[Introduce yourself to children as they enter. Using the “Throw & Tell Ball,” spend about 5 minutes “getting to know” the kids to allow time for those who are coming in late.]

Welcome! I’m ___________, Director of Research and Technology. I’m glad you found your way into my Lab!

Today we are learning about Armor. The Army manual, you might know it by it’s civilian name, the Bible, describes a magnificent set of Armor in Ephesians 6:10-18. Who can tell me the different pieces of the Armor of God? [The first week or two you may not get a response, but in later weeks, the children should be able to name at least SEVERAL of the pieces. Read the passage and refer them to the Armor of God poster if needed.]

That was very good, but let’s open our manuals anyway. [Pass out Bibles and have children turn to Ephesians 6:10-18.]

Dig:

Balloon Experiment #1
Armor is such a misunderstood thing. I’ve spent quite some time experimenting with protective armor lately. Would you like to help me conduct an experiment or two? (YES!)

Great! Who can blow up this balloon for me? [While volunteer is blowing it up, light a candle.]

Now, someone read me vs. 10-13 of this section of the Manual. [Be prepared to read it yourself.]

Now this balloon, [hold it up] it is just full of air. It has no protection. When the Devil gets close [hold balloon near flame – it will quickly burst], it can’t stand up to him!  (Alternately: Evil can destroy.)

DO NOT LEAVE FLAME UNATTENDED!


Balloon Experiment #2
But what if we give our dear fellow [hold up second balloon] some protection? [Use funnel to fill balloon with water from the cups that you have labeled as parts of the Armor of God: Belt of Truth, Breastplate of Righteousness, etc. as you go. Tie balloon and go back to flame.]

When we give this little soldier some protection, he can withstand the flame! [Hold balloon over flame – it will not burst.]   Why? Water is a great absorber of heat. Rather than burning the balloon rubber, the heat from the flame is absorbed by the water inside the balloon. In the same way, truth, righteousness, peace, faith and salvation protect US.

Now let's pop this balloon with this pin!  POW!  The water didn't help, did it. This balloon needed a SHIELD just like we do.

Balloon Experiment #3
Blow up another balloon, and this time, put a piece of TAPE on the balloon, now slowly stick the pin into the tape. The balloon will not burst. The tape STRENGTHENS the weak balloon around it. How does God's armor act like a shield to our faith?]

Now let’s read the next part of the Manual, verses 14-18.

Cornstarch Experiment
I would like you soldiers to help me with one more experiment. This is some pretty fancy technology. What we will make is a lot like this Armor of God. You see, in some ways it is very real. Satan’s attacks are real, and he is very powerful, so we need very real, very powerful weapons against him. [Pass out cornstarch.] This powder is real and tangible. You can touch it and feel it. Like the attacks of Satan are real.

But our battle is not a physical battle, it is spiritual, which is hard to define and pin down. [Pass out the cups of water.] This water is like the spiritual realm. You can feel it, but it can’t be felt like a solid, it is a liquid, so it has no definition on its own. It takes the shape of whatever it is in.

Now, slowly pour the powder into your water. [Pass out spoons.] Mix this and add more until it has the consistency of honey or pancake batter. [Allow time for mixing. Be prepared to offer more cornstarch or water as needed.]

[Pass out plates.] Now pour some of the mixture onto your plate. It pours like a liquid, right? Now, pick some up in your hand and squeeze it. It feels like a solid, right? But once you stop squeezing, it acts like a liquid again.

This goop can help us remember that although it is a very real fight, and we can definitely feel it, our battle is a spiritual battle.

Now let's add some GLUE to that mess, what happens?  It can be rolled into a ball, it holds its shape!   What is the GLUE that holds our faith together??

Pretty cool, eh?

Reflection:

So let’s review, then clean up:

  1. Why do we need spiritual armor? (To stand against the attacks of the devil.)
  2. What is it we fight against? (Against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.)
  3. Should we be afraid of this battle? (No, God will help us stand against evil. The powers of darkness will be defeated by God.)
  4. How does God help us in the battle against evil? (He gives us the weapons and armor we need to stand strong.)
  5. Why is it important that we that we put on our spiritual armor every day? (Without it we will be weak and easily defeated.)
  6. How can we use each piece of spiritual armor at home? At school? At church? [Allow plenty of time for discussion.]

[Close in prayer thanking God for our armor and asking God to help us fight and win the battle against Satan.]

[If you finish early, children can work on journal pages.]


Modifications for Younger Soldiers:
Younger students will need more supervision in the experiments. Younger children will answer questions in a more concrete manner.

Modifications for Older Soldiers:
Older students can read the passages and should be able to answer questions more abstractly.

DO NOT LEAVE FLAME UNATTENDED!

References:


A lesson by Staci Woodruff from: Jenks Church of Christ

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

Last edited by Luanne Payne

Throw and Tell Balls

In our classrooms, we use "Throw & Tell" balls from Group as opening activities. You can find out more about them here: https://www.group.com/search.do?query=ball

A few weeks back, one of the men from church who is a Sergeant in the army brought out a Humvee and Personnel Carrier from the local army training area. He told us about all kinds of amazing military advances that parallel these lessons. I don't know how you'd get authorization to do it each week, but that would have made an EXCELLENT workshop!

The cool part was, though, that as we sat in the back of the big giant truck driving around the church lot, I asked the kids, "How do these things compare to the armor of God?" Just about everyone had a different answer. "The bullet-proof glass is like the breastplate or the shield - it stops the bullets!" The helmets are equipped with sensors that show up on our military's night-vision equipment. One of the adults noted that the people wearing them are "marked" like we are when we have salvation. And on and on it went. It was cool to see they had "got it."

~Staci (Jenks Church)

Last edited by Luanne Payne

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