BIBLE SKILLS & GAMES Lessons & Ideas for Isaiah foretells the Messiah

Bible Skills and Games Lessons, Ideas, Activities, and Resources for Teaching "Isaiah Foretells the Messiah" in Sunday School.

Post your Sunday School bible skills and games lessons, ideas, activities, and resources for "Isaiah Foretells the Messiah" here.

  • Please include a scripture reference, supply lists, sources, suggested age range. age modification, etc. 
  • Photos are much appreciated!  Click "attachments" and upload to your post.
  • Please be careful not to post copyrighted materials. Excerpting and paraphrasing are okay. Include attribution.

Isaiah 9, Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace, Messiah, Great Light, Matthew 1:20-24, Angel, Mary, Emmanuel. Immanuel, etc. Bible lessons for "Isaiah Foretells the Messiah" -with Games, Bible memory, Games that teach the Bible, Bible Activities, Bible Books, etc. 


In addition to all our public lesson ideas, the Rotation.org Writing Team has written a wonderful Isaiah Promised ~ Jesus Fulfilled lesson set that includes a great Bible Games Workshop lesson plan.



Attachments

Photos (1)
Original Post

Here are two "demonstrations" with discussion that feel like 'games' you can 'play' with your students.


 

1. Flashlight fun... "Darkness/Light" 

Is 9 "The people who have walked in darkness have seen a great light."

FLASHLIGHT FUN:
Ideally, you will do this demonstration in a totally dark room, if your church has one.  If not, use the blindfold option.

Blindfold Option: Students are blindfolded and slowly move around the classroom. Have a spotter-helper.

Use this exercise to begin to unpack the concept of "darkness" as a metaphor for people who have lost their way in life, lost their hope, lost their values, lost their connection to God.  (I'm sketching this idea, you will need to flesh it out to your students as you wish.)

Isaiah 9 describes Jerusalem in Isaiah's day. Before you turn off the light, read the whole passage and then turn off the light. Discuss how darkness makes you feel. (It can create anxiety and fear, especially if it's the kind of darkness that has bad things in it, and not simply a dark room!) Ask this question:  "If you knew you were in darkness, how exciting would it be to be told that LIGHT WAS COMING!  Even if it wasn't going to happen soon, how would it make you feel to know that God was coming to help in a special way?"  (You might also point out that some people avoid light even when they see it, while others are drawn to it.)

Now turn on your bright flashlight in the dark room. What does the light do? How does it make you feel when you see it?  What's its purpose?  (remember, this is a metaphor!)  The light helped the people "walking" in darkness. How does light help us get where we are going?

For this next part, temporarily turn on the lights...

Now pull out a roll of tinfoil and tear off BIG sheets for each student. Have them experiment with turning off the light and reflecting the flashlight light using various techniques. 

-see how much the room lights up when the flashlight is aimed at one person's foil.

-have students assemble several sheets to see how much light they can reflect.

-have students attempt to 'relay' the beam of light across the room.

Teacher: you are to make the connection between the experiments and experience AND what we know about Christ's light, and our role in reflecting that light to others in darkness.

Final Light Metaphor Option!

Now in that dark room, demonstrate how we know God is with us by his light.  --even though we don't see God (or at least in the darkened room we only see the flashlight-holder dimly).

We often know and feel God's presence by what God does.... he provides light/wisdom  ...a pathway.  Growth, warmth, exposing the dark, dispelling fear in the darkness....etc. (all the things that light does).  Shine your flashlight on several objects you have placed around the room:  A Bible, a person in need (picture), the way out, the light switch (use your imagination!)   God shows us things we need to see. "Now if  you close your eyes to God you can't see anything that God is trying to show you." You might think God doesn't exist because you close your eyes to the things God is doing in your life and around you.


 

2.  God with Us "20 Questions" Demonstration

Is 7: "And you shall call his name Immanuel." (which means, "God with us")

The following exercise demonstrates the idea of someone being 'with us' though not being seen or immediately known, and the ways in which we might be able to tell 'who' is with us. It is meant to create a memorable experience about the word "Immanuel" and open up further discussion. 

Prior to class, invite 2 adults to arrive outside the classroom door so that the students cannot see them. You may accomplish this by creating a barrier, or keeping the door closed. Tell the class that they are to try and guess who the first 'guest' is by playing "20 questions."  The guest will respond by writing their YES or NO answers on a piece of paper and slipping them to the teacher under the door (or around the blind).  

Note: Some questions should be out of bounds, such as, "are you male or female" ...as this will be a problem for the second guest!

After the kids guess who the first guest is, repeat the process with the second guest. However, the second guest is taking on the role of God. This time, tell the students that they are NOT to GUESS OUT LOUD who they think it is behind the door/blind.  Instead, they are to keep their opinions to themselves, and when prompted, WRITE DOWN their guess and pass it in.  

The teacher should decide how many questions are 'enough' to ask the mystery guest, and when to invite students to submit 'who' they think the guest is.  Depending on your age group, the teacher may need to ask specific questions to help students along. Such as, "are you famous?"  Students may not ask direct questions, such as, "are you God?" -because they need to write down their guess.

After 'God' is revealed and enters the room, discuss the process of discovery/questioning that just took place.

When did you start to get an idea of who the person was?  

What helped you guess right?

After playing, having the students make a list of GOD'S CHARACTERISTICS

-all powerful

-merciful

-etc.

Now write the word "Jesus" next to God's and ask students if all those characteristics describe Jesus as well.

Write the phrase "Emmanuel = God With Us" above your two lists.


 

 NOTES

Emmanuel, God With Us 

Isaiah 7:14  Behold, a virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel. (Which means "God with us.")

How is God "with us" today? What does the way God has chosen to be with us tell you about his heart and presence?

Darkness and Light 

Isaiah 9:2 The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light;
those who lived in a land of deep darkness—    on them light has shined. 

What is the darkness people walk in? How is doubt or sin like darkness?
What is the "great light" that God is shining and who does it shine on?

Wonderful Counselor...Prince of Peace 

Isaiah 9: 6
For unto us a Child is born,
Unto us a Son is given;
And the government will be upon His shoulder.
And His name will be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. 

Why did the Creator of the Universe decide to become a baby?
What does it mean to say the Child will be a "Counselor" ??  Do you think of Jesus as your counselor? What are some issues and times Jesus could counsel you about?


BTW: Is his name spelled "Immanuel" or "Emmanuel"? 

Both spellings are correct! 

Writing in Greek, Matthew spelled it with an "E" because that's how the Hebrew words sounds to a Greek speaker --with a long E, and that's how the Greek version of the Old Testament spelled it. But in Hebrew versions of Isaiah, the first letter is an "i" -even though in Hebrew the "i" can sometimes be vocalized like a long E.  There is a difference of opinion among translators, so depending on your translation, you might just have Immanuel. But most use Immanuel for Isaiah 7:14 and Emmanuel in Matthew 1:23 when the Greek writing Matthew is quoting Isaiah.

Name Building Blocks

 

My husband said the Isaiah 9:6 verse always makes him think of climbing a mountain.

He explained that it feels like the names are building on each other, reaching to the top.

 

Have students write the names of Jesus on boxes (shoe boxes?) and do a memory verse STACKING activity.  

Discussion idea: You could also put a question inside each box, and toss the box to a student to open and answer it.  

Reflection: And finally, you can have each student write an idea about the name, and put it in each box for a reflection reading.

 

ADD some Bible dictionary work to define and explain what Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace, Immanuel mean.  These definitions could be written on the underside of their respective box, and used for a quiz where students see how many boxes (names) they can define correctly in the shortest amount of time.

 

 

A Patience Game and Discussion

 

  1. Kids split into two teams on either side of the room.
  2. One player from each team comes to the middle of the room and sits in a chair facing the other player.
  3. On "go" they must sit quietly STARING at each other. First one to move or crack a smile scores a point for the other team. The players and other team members may not make any distracting moves or sounds. If they do, a point is awarded to the other team. Blinking and slight movements permitted (adjust how your referee this to your group). (After 60 seconds, award both a point.)

 

Variation: for larger groups, have a pair of kids from each team play at the same time.

 

Comment: How hard was it to wait/be patient?  What did you do to patiently wait?

 

   4.    Now play a shorter version of the game allowing one player to try and provoke a smile or response from the other (without touching or coming within 1 ft of the other player).  Set a time limit of 30 seconds. Award a point to the team who's player waits out the distraction.

 

How hard is it to wait and NOT respond to the other player?  What helps you be patient?  What things in your life are giving you STRESS...and what things are trying to distract you from worshiping God, for example.  What things are distracting people from Peace? from helping others? from enjoying life? from following Jesus? (greed, selfishness, too much homework?)  Write their responses on the board.

 

Now tell the class the whole story of the Old Testament in under 60 seconds....all the promises given from Abraham through Exodus, to the Kings, and all the people hoped for (a righteous King they could trust who would protect and provide for them).  

 

Set the stage for what's happening in Isaiah 7: 13-14 (Emmanuel), and Isaiah 9 (people who have walked in darkness)....  
Northern Israel has been conquered and Jerusalem is under seige by the Assyrian Empire. Judah/Jerusalem's King Ahaz has tried to appease (please) the Assyrians and failed. Ahaz had let the Temple deteriorate and was a bad king. His son Hezekiah fixed the Temple and tried to prepare Jerusalem to hold off the Assyrian army. Isaiah spent his days warning Ahaz and then Hezekiah that disaster was coming. But in the middle of all his warnings, Isaiah relayed God's message of hope for the future, ...a time when a new kind of King would reign over the people. A Messiah. But it wouldn't happen for 800 more years. (THAT'S PATIENCE!)  See "why we had to wait" below....

 


 

 

Question: Why did God take so long and make us wait? 

This is an important question to answer with your kids. Have Bibles ready to refer to the passages. You might assign them ahead of time.

 

Here are some thoughts about 'why' God makes us wait:

 

Answer 1: Patience produces good things. (aka "Patience is a virtue") As Paul said in Romans 5:3-5 "suffering produces endurance, 4 and endurance produces character, and character produces hope,5 and hope does not disappoint us...."

 

Answer 2: God does not view history, time and suffering like humans do. We don't understand all the reasons why God took 800 years, but we believe it is part of God's larger plan for humanity and history. God doesn't count years like we do. Like Psalm 90 says, "A thousand years in your sight are like a day that has just gone by, or like a watch in the night."    It has been said that "life is a lesson we are being taught, and that lesson is that we are not God, and instead, are here to trust God."

 

Life Application: What this means for me personally is that I am a small part of God's great plan. The things I do are part of a larger plan that I must trust in. Isaiah did not live to see his predictions come true, but they did. I may not live to see the results of my actions either, at least in this life, but I trust God that "all things work together for good...."   (Romans 8:28)

 

Perhaps people are IMpatient because they think that they "only have so many years to do things before they die."  But as Christians, we believe in heaven. Life continues here without us, and in heaven for us in a way we can only imagine. If you think you must "succeed" in order to get into heaven, then you cannot afford to be patience!  But our access to heaven is not based on our 'works.'  This point of view produces patients, which is a form of HUMILITY.  (This is not to say we should do nothing to change the world. We should! ...but it teaches us that WE are not the center of the universe, God is).

 

Jesus addresses a similar idea in Luke 6:22-23 -Luke's version of the Beatitudes: "Blessed are you when people hate you, avoid you, insult you, and slander you because you are committed to the Son of Man. Rejoice then, and be very happy! You have a great reward in heaven. That's the way their ancestors treated the prophets."

 

<>< Neil


 

Add Reply

Likes and Bookmarks (1)
RM

Rotation.org Inc. is a volunteer-run, 100% member supported, 501(c)3 non-profit Sunday School lesson ministry. All content here is the copyrighted property of its listed author. You are welcome to borrow and adapt content here for non-commercial teaching purposes --as long as both the site and author is referenced. Posting here implies permission for others to use your content for non-commercial purposes. Rotation.org Inc reserves the right to manage, move, condense, delete, and otherwise improve all content posted to the site. Read our Terms of Service. Google Ad Note: Serving the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, S. Africa, and more!

Rotation.org is rated 5 stars on Google based on 55 reviews.
×
×
×
×
×