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Cooking Lessons, Ideas, Activities, and Resources for the Trial and Crucifixion.

Post your Sunday School cooking lessons, ideas, activities, and resources for the Trial and Crucifixion.

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Including: Cross, Jesus, Caiaphas, Pilate, Scourging, Nails, Centurion, Golgotha, Place of the Skull, Calvary, and related. Matthew 26, Mark 14, Luke 22; John 18, etc.

Bible lessons for the Trial and Crucifixion -with Cooking, Food, Bible Foods, Recipes, Baking, Preparation, etc

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Easter – Trial and Crucifixion
Cooking Workshop
State Street UMC G.R.E.A.T. Adventure

Summary of Lesson Activities:
Children will create “Good News Rolls” to review the Easter story.

Scripture Reference:

Luke 22:47-23:56

Leader Preparation:

  • Review the Bible Background, Behavioral Covenant, Teaching Tips and Lesson plan.
  • Gather all necessary supplies for activities.
  • Preview Rotation Music CD – play the music while preparing the rolls and during journal time.

Materials List:

  • Ingredients:
    Large Marshmallows (1 per child)
    Melted Butter (half a stick)
    Cinnamon – several tablespoons
    Sugar (use sugar substitute for 1-2 grade class) - several tablespoons
    Crescent Rolls (1 per child)
  • Supplies:
    Mixing Bowls (2)
    Baking Pan
    Small saucepan
    Hot plate

Important Note for Cooking Workshop Leaders:
Children LOVE to cook and create various concoctions in this workshop. But occasionally the cooking activity does not have as obvious or concrete a connection with the lesson as do some of the other activities. Help the children make that connection by intentionally discussing the way the activity relates to the lesson of the day. Discuss during preparation, eating and clean-up times. When finished with the activity of the day, please be sure to bag up the trash and replace the trashcan liner (extras are found in the hallway closet if needed) if any food items were used. Use the Rotation Music CD to reinforce some of the concepts by playing during preparation, eating and journal times.

ALLERGY NOTE: Several of our children are severely allergic to peanuts and other nuts. Check ingredient labels to make sure nuts and nut oils are not included in any cooking activities!!

Time Guidelines:
Welcome and Introductions 10 minutes
Bible Study 15 minutes
Good News Rolls 25 minutes
Reflection/Closing 10 minutes

Lesson Plan


Welcome the children and introduce yourself. Make sure everyone is wearing a nametag. Give the children a simple one or two-sentence synopsis of what you will be doing during the workshop. Tell the children that today they will be learning about Jesus’ trial and crucifixion and his great love for us – so much that he was willing to die for us.

Opening Prayer: Dear God, Thank you for this day and our time together. Thank you, dear Lord, for sending us Your loving Son, Jesus. Guide us to have this same wonderful love that he had for us, so that we may share that love with others. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen


Bible Study:

Adventure Bible for Young Readers: Luke 22:47-23:56, Little Kids’ Adventure Bible: pages 348-355. See paraphrased version below.

Important Teacher Notes:
Each workshop begins with the Bible story. One of our primary goals is to improve the children’s Bible literacy! If children did not bring their Bibles from home, use the classroom Bibles. Shepherds should help the children locate the stories. Use the handout “Helping Children Learn to Use their Bibles” and the Background Information to help you introduce the story.

**Remember, that as the rotation progresses, the children will become more familiar with the story. When this happens, allow the children to tell you what they know. The children should still locate the story in their Bibles every week. Use the bold headings in their Bibles to guide your discussion. You may want to review some of the Bible notes as well. Then you can fill in any missing information and add additional details using the Background Information to help you. One of greatest advantages of this model is that children who come regularly learn the story in great depth.

Today’s story is too long to read in its entirety from the children’s Bibles. Instead have them locate the beginning of the story and note the titles (in bold red and blue print for grades 1-2, in bold print for grades 3-6). Use the paraphrased passage below. Be sure to pause and discuss the Bible notes as you come to them and take time to answer any questions the children may have.

Introduce the Story:
Ask: Where would we find a story about Jesus and his friends? (gospels in the New Testament). Today’s story is found in all four gospels. (Matthew, Mark, Luke and John). We are going to do our Bible study from the gospel of Luke.

Today’s story is too long for us to read straight out of our Bibles. Instead I am going to tell you the story and you will find portions of it. We’ll also look at some of the Bible notes. First, let’s review a little bit and remember what has been happening to Jesus…
Jesus and his disciples left Jerusalem after raising Lazarus. Jesus knew that that had really angered the religious leaders. They were determined to find a way to kill him. But now it was time for the Passover, a very important Jewish festival. Jesus and his disciples came back to Jerusalem to worship at the Temple to celebrate the Passover. When Jesus rode into Jerusalem people waved palm branches and welcomed him. They shouted out Hosanna, and called him King! They were so excited. Then on Thursday night Jesus ate his last meal with his disciples. We call this the ______. (Last Supper). He knew this was his last night to be with them. After the meal, they went out to the Mount of Olives in the Garden of Gethsemane. Jesus needed to pray. He knew what was coming and he needed God’s strength and closeness. The disciples all fell asleep. Jesus had hoped they would stay awake and pray with him…
Suddenly, there were loud shouts and noises. A crowd of soldiers and people rushed up. Judas had betrayed Jesus for 30 pieces of silver. With a kiss, on Jesus’ cheek, Judas let the soldiers know who to arrest. The guards arrested Jesus and took him away to the house of the chief priest.

Let’s find the story in our Bibles now…

"Jesus is Taken to the Sanhedrin" (Grades 1-2: page 348, Grades 3-6: Luke 22:54)
The soldiers and crowd took Jesus away to the house of Caiaphas, the high priest and president of the Sanhedrin. Do you know what the Sanhedrin is?

Locate and read the "Did you Know" Bible note (Grades 1-2: page 348 and Grades 3-6: page 1159): What was the Sanhedrin?
The Sanhedrin was a very powerful Jewish court. They didn’t like Jesus and what he had been teaching. They had been looking for a way to get rid of Jesus since Lazarus was raised from the dead. They were more interested in following the rules that they made up, rather than really doing what God wanted. The Sanhedrin was very powerful, but the Romans were really in charge. As long as the Sanhedrin kept things peaceful and quiet, the Romans let them do their own thing. Caiaphas was the high priest and the president of the Sanhedrin. He was afraid that Jesus was getting people too riled up – all this talk about new Kings and all. Maybe the people would even riot. If that happened, the Romans would take over and take away the Sanhedrin’s power. Caiaphas thought it would be better for Jesus to die, since he was just one man. Then everything would get back to normal.

Grades 3-6 only: People in Bible Times: "Caiaphas" (page 1263),

Now the Sanhedrin was known throughout the world for their just laws. But this night, they broke many of their own laws! (Refer to Background Information for list of broken laws.)

Caiaphas asked Jesus a lot of questions. “If you are the Christ, tell us,” they said. Are you the Christ? Are you the Son of God?” Jesus said, “I am. And you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of God.” This made Caiaphas and the Sanhedrin furious! “This is blasphemy! We have heard it from his own lips. This man is claiming to be God, himself. He must die!”

Locate and read the People in Bible Times note: "Jesus" (Grades 1-2: page 289, Grades 3-6: page 1176). Jesus called himself the Son of God and the Son of Man. This means that Jesus is both God and human.

The Sanhedrin was furious! They spit on Jesus and hit him. They found Jesus guilty and said that he must die. But, remember, the Sanhedrin was very powerful, but they didn’t have the power to put anyone to death.

"Peter Says He Does Not Know Jesus" (Grades 1-2: page 349, Grades 3-6: page 1230)
Meanwhile Peter, Jesus’ disciple, was outside in the courtyard. A woman saw Peter and recognized him as one of Jesus’ followers. But Peter was afraid. He said three times that he didn’t know Jesus. Just as he said it the last time, a rooster crowed. At that very moment, Jesus turned and looked right at Peter. Jesus had told Peter that he would deny him three times before the rooster crowed. Peter felt terrible and cried and cried.

Grades 3-6: "The Guards make Fun of Jesus" (page 1231)
The guards made fun of Jesus. They laughed at him and hit him. They put a blindfold on his eyes and said, “Prophesy and tell who hit you.”

"Jesus Goes Before Pilate" (and Herod) (Grades 1-2: page 350, Grades 3-6: page 1231)
Early the next morning, the priests took Jesus to Pilate, the Roman governor. The Sanhedrin could arrest people and punish them, but only the Roman governor could sentence someone to be killed. They wanted Jesus put to death.

Read the People in Bible Times Note: "Pontius Pilate" (Grades 1-2: page 351, Grades 3-6: page 1160)
Pilate asked Jesus lots of questions too. He thought Jesus was innocent. He wanted the Sanhedrin to deal with Jesus on its own. Pilate discovered that Jesus was from Galilee, a different province than here in Jerusalem. So he sent Jesus to see Herod, who was the leader of Galilee. Herod was in town because of the Passover. Herod was excited to see Jesus. He hoped he would do some miracles for him. Herod asked Jesus many questions, but Jesus didn’t answer him. So Herod and his soldiers laughed at Jesus and made fun of him. They put a purple robe on him and laughed at the “king.” Then Herod sent Jesus back to Pilate. Pilate didn’t believe Jesus should die. He wanted to just whip him and let him go. But the Sanhedrin wanted Jesus killed and, remember, they could not do that. They kept after Pilate. Pilate offered to let Jesus go free, since the Romans always let a Jewish prisoner go free during Passover. But the priests and crowd asked Pilate to release a criminal named Barabbas instead. They wanted Jesus to die. The crowd screamed, “Crucify him! Crucify him!” Finally Pilate gave in. He ordered Jesus whipped and crucified.

Read the Life in Bible Times note: "Flogging" (Grades 1-2: page 352, “Whipping” Grades 3-6: page 1188)

Read the Life in Bible Times note: "The Cross" (Grades 1-2: pages 352-353, Grades 3-6: pages 1188 and 1232).
Grades 3-6 can also read People in Bible Times: "Simon" (page 1232) Explain that Simon would have carried just the horizontal cross piece of Jesus’ cross, not the entire cross as we typically see in pictures. The older children will probably be interested in more of the details of crucifixions. Use the background information to discuss with them.

"Jesus is Nailed to a Cross" (Grades 1-2: page 352, Grades 3-6: page 1232)
They took Jesus away to the place called Golgotha. It means “the skull.” They nailed his wrists and feet to the cross and left him there to die. The soldiers stood guard and made fun of Jesus. They put a sign above his head that read, “This is the King of the Jews.” They cast lots to see who would get to keep Jesus’ robe. (this is kind of like playing a game with dice) Jesus prayed, “Father forgive them. They don’t know what they are doing.” Two criminals were crucified on both sides of Jesus. One of them asked Jesus to remember him in heaven. Jesus promised that the man would be in heaven with Jesus that very day.
Jesus Dies (Grades 1-2: page 354, Grades 3-6: page 1232) (there is good background information in Journey to the Cross about this section - you might want to have it out for the children to see)
At noon the sky turned dark. It lasted until 3:00. At 3:00 Jesus cried out,”Father, into your hands I commit my very life.” Then he died. Immediately the earth shook and the curtain in the Temple tore from top to bottom. The Roman commander standing in front of Jesus heard Jesus and saw what happened. He said, “Surely this man did what was right!”

"Jesus is Buried" (Grades 1-2: page 354, Grades 3-6: page 1189)
Joseph of Arimathea, a secret disciple of Jesus, went to Pilate and asked for Jesus’ body. Joseph wrapped Jesus’ body in linen and put him in a new tomb.

Grades 3-6: People in Bible Times: "Joseph of Arimathea" (page 1189)

Read the Life in Bible Times note: "Burial" (Grades 1-2: page 355, Grades 3-6: page 1265). (This should be review for our children as we have discussed Jewish burial customs in great length during the Jairus’ Daughter rotation and the Raising of Lazarus rotation)

Read the Life in Bible Times note: "Jesus’ Tomb" (Grades 1-2: page 356, Grades 3-6: page 1162).
Jesus’ friends and disciples and family watched all of this. What do you think they were thinking when they saw that Jesus had really died? How do you think they were feeling? How would you have felt if you had watched Jesus die and seen him buried?

But we know that this is not the end of the story… because three days later, what happened? We know that Jesus rose from the dead and is alive today! And that is what we celebrate at Easter!

Memory Verse: Each rotation the children are asked to memorize one scripture verse. Locate and review the memory verse with them at this time. Note that we will use the version that corresponds to the Music CD. You may want to play the CD as the children are locating the scripture.

Cooking Activity: Good News Rolls!
(adapted from Wendy in Roch cooking idea posted at
Children will make (and eat) “Good News Rolls” which symbolize the resurrection of Jesus.

  1. Have all the children wash their hands.
  2. Place the butter in the saucepan and melt over medium heat. Careful here!
  3. Let some of the children mix the cinnamon and sugar. Place the cinnamon and sugar in a ziplock baggie, seal and mix together.
  4. Pour the mixture into a bowl or a paper plate.
  5. Unroll and separate the crescent rolls into separate triangles.
  6. Pass out the marshmallows.
    Explain: This marshmallow is going to represent Jesus. It is white which stands for purity and perfection since Jesus had no sin.
  7. Let each child roll a marshmallow in the melted butter.
    Explain: This is the anointing oil.
  8. Next, let each child roll the marshmallow in the cinnamon/sugar mixture.
    Explain: This is the anointing spice.
  9. Now have each child roll the marshmallow in the crescent roll, wrapping the marshmallow completely with the dough and making sure that it is completely sealed. None of the marshmallow should be showing.
    Explain: This is how the tomb was completely closed when Jesus was placed inside.
  10. Have each child place his/her tomb on the baking sheet seam side down. Bake @ 350 degrees
    for 10 minutes.

As you make the rolls, discuss some of the following:

  1. Where did this story take place? (Jerusalem)
  2. Who was Caiaphas? (chief priest, President of the Sanhedrin)
  3. Why did the Jewish religious leaders arrest Jesus? (They were afraid that he would ruin the freedom to practice their religion and they might lose the “high” positions they held. They thought he was teaching against the Law.)
  4. How did the guards treat Jesus? (Beat Jesus and called him terrible names.)
  5. How did Jesus respond to what they said? (He did not fight back or say anything.)
  6. What did the Jewish leaders hope to do with Jesus? (Get rid of him)
  7. Did Pilate cooperate with them? (He did not want to, but the priests kept after Pilate, until he finally gave in.)
  8. What did Herod want Jesus to do? (Perform miracles for him)
  9. What was Jesus’ reaction to all these terrible things? (Nothing, he knew it would not change anything.)
  10. Where was Jesus crucified? (Golgotha, the Place of the Skull)

As you are cleaning up and the rolls are baking, discuss some of the following:

  1. Who realized that Jesus was the Son of God? (Gentile Roman soldier, robber on the cross)
  2. What was Jesus’ final request of God? (Prayed that God would forgive them.)
  3. Why were these people not willing to accept Jesus as the Messiah? (He was not what they were expecting.)
  4. What unusual things happened when Jesus died and what are some of their meanings? (Curtain in the Temple torn in two from top to bottom - Jesus opened the way for all to have access to God’s grace. Only God could have torn it from top to bottom. Tombs were opened. Resurrection
  5. for us. A Roman commander came to believe in Christ. He had witnessed all that had gone on and came to faith.)

When the rolls are done:
Have everyone gather at the table for their rolls and juice/water.

As everyone is eating discuss the following:
Why are our rolls empty? (Jesus has risen, He has risen indeed!)

For more questions, refer to the Background Information and the section "Meaning of the Cross - FAQs".

Jesus was betrayed by his friends and hurt and killed by his enemies. But he didn’t deserve any of that.

  1. Have you ever been mistreated?
  2. What happened?
  3. How did you respond?
  4. Instead of responding by crying, running away, or hitting back, what might happen if you decided to pray for the person who mistreated you?
  5. Have you ever been betrayed by a friend?
  6. How did you feel? What did you do? What helps you to forgive?
  7. What can we do to show others the same love that Jesus showed for us?


The last 10 minutes should be reserved for Journal and Reflection time. This is an opportunity for processing and reflection about what the children have learned. Ask the shepherds to pass out the journals and pencils/pens and the journal sticker for the day. Workshop leaders and shepherds should sit down with children in small groups to facilitate discussion and writing in Faith Journals. Memory verse stickers are also included for each lesson. Children may also copy the memory verse and illustrate.

Journal Questions:
Grades 1-2: Jesus asked God to forgive those who hurt him. When is a time you have forgiven someone?
Grades 3-6: Jesus asked God to forgive those who hurt him. Write about a time you have forgiven someone. Was it hard? Does knowing how forgiving Jesus was to his enemies help you forgive?

Extra Activity: If you have extra time before parents arrive, review the memory verse with the children in the following way: Stand in a circle – arms length apart. Repeat the verse several times together (don’t forget the scripture reference. Then go around the circle one at a time and have each child say one word of the verse. Did everyone remember all of it? Repeat having children squat down and jump up when they recite their part. Repeat several times adding different actions as you say the verse. (turning around, jumping up and down, whispering, shouting, etc.) OR use the Rotation music CD to sing and review the memory verse.

Closing prayer: Gather the children together in a circle holding hands. Review with them one word or concept that they learned during today’s session. (Believe, Love, Resurrection, Faith are some suggestions) Encourage them to come back next week and to bring a friend, especially a friend who does not have a church home. Remind them to bring their Bibles. Close with a circle prayer. Tell the children that you will start the prayer and pass it on to the next child, if anyone does not want to say a prayer, let them squeeze the hand of the next child to pass it on. When it comes back to you finish the prayer.

A lesson from: State Street UMC
Bristol, VA
This lesson created and copyrighted by State Street UMC, Bristol, VA, 2003. Permission granted for non-commercial, local church use, provided credit is give to the source.

A representative of reformatted this post to improve readability.

Last edited by Luanne Payne

Editor's Note:

The following Cooking workshop idea was saved from an old post (prior 2002) because it demonstrates a good teaching technique: assigning meaning to the ingredients and mixing them as you talk about the story. And...because it demonstrates a unique way of making a cookie with a takehome-to-finish twist.

Feel free to expand on the concept/recipe, or use it as a technique with your own creative ingredients inspired study.

In the original version of this lesson below, the recipe calls for the cookies to be finished at home in an oven that has been turned OFF after heating. And yes, that is how you make these cookies!   However, Luanne, one of our volunteer editors, did this project in her church kitchen this way:

Substituted "Butterscotch Chipits" for the pecans.

"Instead of making the cookie dough to go home for completion, use the oven in the church kitchen. Placed the cookies in the oven and have the kids help you tape the door shut.

Then, go do an activity with the kid's - such as: easy skit, read the Easter story, play a game, etc.

We actually had great fun learning an Israeli dance using the "Cross-Over Step" (also called Maylim or Grapevine) to the Messianic Song - "We've Been Approved by God" by Liberated Wailing Wall from their CD "David's Hope". Lyrics.

After extra activity, GO BACK into the kitchen and pass around pre-baked ones you have made AHEAD OF TIME. The children will not have a problem with this and they'll look forward to eating the cookies the following week. Put them in baggies with the recipe attached and the parents can try it at home with the kids sometime. Remember to get their cookies out of the oven the next day. Put them in a baggie and bring them to church next Sunday."

How to do the cross-over step is included in the attached "Easter Meringue Story Cookies Lesson Sheet.pdf"  found at end of this lesson here at

This cookie recipe Easter story idea author is unknown and can be found at several websites across the internet.

This sketch needs Bible study and life application added.
Please be aware of any students with nut allergies!

Trial and Crucifixion

Cooking Workshop

Summary of Lesson Activities:Meringue Easter Story Cookies

Uses an Easter Story (Meringue) Cookies recipe to explain the crucifixion to children.

Scripture Reference:

Matthew 26:47-27:61; Mark 14:43-15:47; Luke 22:47-23:56; John 18:2-19:42

Key Bible Verse:
There the soldiers nailed Jesus to his cross. Luke 23:3 (International Children's Bible)

Leader Preparation:

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

Materials List:

  • 1 cup whole pecans (or substitute "Butterscotch Chipits)
  • 1 t vinegar
  • 3 egg whites
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • Zipper baggies
  • Wooden spoons
  • GLASS Mixing bowl
  • Electric Beater
  • Bibles

Lesson Plan


Greet the children and introduce yourself.

Open with prayer.


  1. Read the story of Jesus' crucifixion from attached story sheet (recommended) or from selections of one of the above passages. If you read the selections, be sure to include the events mentioned in the attached recipe.
  2. Review the story--answering any questions the class may have--to make sure the children understand it.
  3. Tell the children that you will be making the dough for a snack that will help them remember the story of Jesus' death. They will take the dough and further instructions home to finish the snack.
  4. Follow the recipe. With younger children (kindergarten-3rd grade), refer to the story for each step. With older children (4th-8th grades), you may also want to read together the referenced scriptures, if time permits.
  5. When finished, divide the dough among the students and give them instruction cards (attached) to take home. Remind them that they will need to refrigerate the dough until they are ready to finish it. They will need to ask an adult for help when they finish the recipe at home.


1 cup whole pecans
1 t vinegar
3 egg whites
pinch of salt
1 cup sugar
zipper baggies
wooden spoons
glass mixing bowl mixer

Cooking Instructions:

  1. Place pecans in zipper baggie and let children beat them with wooden spoons. Explain/remind that Jesus was beaten by the Roman soldiers (John 19:1-3).
  2. Let each child smell the vinegar. Put 1 teaspoon of vinegar into mixing bowl. Explain/remind that Jesus was given vinegar to drink when he was on the cross (John 19:28-30).
  3. Add egg whites to vinegar. Eggs represent life.
    Explain/remind that Jesus gave his life to give us life (John 10:10-11).
  4. Sprinkle a little salt into each child's hand. Let them taste it. Brush a pinch of salt into the bowl.
    Explain that this represents the salty tears shed by the women who followed Jesus (Luke 23:27).
  5. So far the ingredients are not very appetizing! Add 1 cup of sugar.
    Explain that the sweetest part of the story is that Jesus died because he loves us. He wants us to know him and to belong to God (Psalm 34:8 and John 3:16). God's word is sweet as well....because it tells us that we are forgiven.
  6. Beat with a mixer on high speed for 12-15 minutes until stiff peaks are formed.
    Explain that the color white represents the purity in God's eyes of those whose sins have been cleansed by Jesus' death (Isaiah 1:18 and John 3:13). What in the story could the white also represent? The angels?
  7. Divide dough and place in zipper bags for kids to take home.

(See Luanne's alternate way of 'cooking' this project above (and also can be found at end of this lesson in a PDF attachment called "Easter Meringue Story Cookies Lesson Sheet" .)


Have the children assist with the cleanup and close with a prayer.

Finishing the Recipe at Home: (instructions to send home - a more detailed Take-Home Sheet is attached at end of this lesson here at

  1. Get an adult to help you!
  2. Start just before you go to bed for the night.
  3. Ask an adult to preheat the oven to 300 degrees.
  4. Take the dough and drop it by teaspoons onto a cookie sheet covered in wax paper. Each mound represents the rocky tomb where Jesus' body was buried. Read Matthew 27:57-60 in your Bible.
  5. When the oven is ready, put the cookie sheet inside. Close the door and turn the oven OFF. (yes, they harden in the cooling oven overnight). Take small pieces of tape and seal the oven door. Remember that Jesus' tomb was sealed with a large rock. Read Matthew 27:60 again.
  6. GO TO BED. You may feel sad to leave the cookies in the oven overnight. Jesus' followers were sad, too, when the tomb was sealed. Read John 16:20 and 22.
  7. Tomorrow morning, open the oven and share the cookies with your family. Be ready for a surprise! Read Matthew 28:1-9.
    What happened to Jesus?

A lesson written by a member.

A representative of reformatted this post to improve readability.

Picture from Hampton United Church, Hampton, ON

See attached to end of this lesson the following two files:

  • "Easter Meringue Story Cookies Take-Home Sheet" pdf file, based on this lesson.
  • "Easter Meringue Story Cookies Lesson Sheet" pfd file based on Luanne's use of this lesson.


Images (1)
  • Meringue Easter Story Cookies
Files (2)
Luanne's Easter Meringue Story Cookies Lesson Sheet.pdf
Easter Meringue Story Cookies Take-Home Sheet.pdf
Last edited by Luanne Payne

Cooking Idea: Crown of Thorns recipe
Posted by member Karen N.

I found this project on a homeschool site and thought it might adapt well to rotation. The size of the crown this recipe makes is at least life-size, so I'm sure the amount needed for an individual child would be much less. I also wonder if the actual crown could be made during class then taken home to bake... that would make it more adaptable to a church setting, too.

Crown of Thorns recipe:

  • 4 cups of flour/ 1 cup of salt.
  • Mix enough water to make a stiff dough-clay.
  • Roll 3 long ropes, loosely braid them.
  • Form braid into a circle and stick toothpicks (which represents the thorns) loosely in it throughout the entire crown.
  • Bake at 350 for an hour or until it is dry and light brown.
  1. For each sacrifice that a child (or adult) makes/does he takes out a "thorn."
  2. This is a good time to explain to the child that sin brings additional pain on Jesus' suffering and good works can comfort Him and show our love for Him.
  3. The goal should be to remove all "thorns" from the crown by Easter.
  4. Once the thorns are removed, glue brightly colored beads where the thorns once were and if you'd like paint the crown.
  5. This makes a beautiful Easter Sunday center piece with a great story to share with your guests.


Aggression Cookies

I have a recipe in my files for "Aggression Cookies". they are oatmeal cookies that the more you work them (roll, pound, knead etc) the better they taste. Your discussion could focus around feelings; how did the crowd react/ feel, how would you feel, how did Jesus react, how do you think he felt? -- nance (Guest), posted August 26, 2012

Last edited by Lesson Forma-teer

Another idea for a cooking Crown of Thorns project, is much quicker and edible..

use Chinese Noodles (Chow Mein Noodles) with melted butterscotch chips. Melt butterscotch in microwave 1- 1 1/2 min stirring 1/2 way through so you don't over melt and risk scorching. Pour into bowl of Chinese morsels, gently mix well to cover noodles. Spread cup size circles on parchment paper for each child. They then use a fork to spread the center out toward the edge to create an open ring. Set in refrigerator a few minutes to cool while you have discussion and they can eat their crown or take it home with them.

For exact ingredient amounts do an online search for butterscotch haystack recipes.

Last edited by Luanne Payne

Cooking "Shareable Cross-Cookie with a Message" Workshop Idea

Rolled Wafer "Fortune Cookie" -style Crosses with messages in them

I don't like the word "fortune" but it describes a bit of a brainstorm I had when I was inspired by a lesson I was editing in the Isaiah forum. They made fortune cookies with Bible verses in them.

"Fortune" -style cookie dough is quick and easy to make and bake in a classroom setting, but I began thinking about how to make them into the shape of a cross. --two rolled tubes, each with a Bible verse, and perhaps tied together with yarn to be given away as a reminder to friends and family of the message of the Cross 

Some possible messages:

Romans 5:8
God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

1 Jn 4:9-11
This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son
 into the world that we might live through him. 10 This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. 11 Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.

Fortune cookie-style cookies in ROLL form are also known as "Tuile cigar cookies" or "Czech Piroutte" cookies.  They are also sold by Pepperridge Farms. 

See this recipe and additional names for this type of rolled wafer cookie at


Images (1)
  • mceclip0

Taste and smell are powerful creators of memories.

For some time I've been looking for a "cooking" or "food" connection to the story of the crucifixion that would help teach about the suffering of Jesus on the cross. I've seen and taught the "sweet" cross lessons, like dipping cross-shaped pretzels in chocolate, but wanted to explore the other side of the story, that of the Suffering Servant. Then I ran across this article discussing the "wine mixed with gall" that the soldier gave Jesus on the cross and it instantly reminded me that we DO have a food item to consider in the story of the cross.

The bitter wine, the wine vinegar


In Matthew 27:34 the soldiers offer wine mixed with gall to Jesus and he refuses it. Mark 15:23 calls the gall "myrrh." "Gall" is a generic term for something bitter, and according to the article linked above, bitter wine was a common drink back then, perhaps even used medicinally.

Then when the bystanders think they hear Jesus calling upon Elijah in Matthew 27:48, they offer him bitter wine on a reed. The NRSV called is "wine vinegar."

Is Jesus being offered the same wine twice? Or two different types of wine? The language of Mark and Matthew is unclear and frankly doesn't matter.  The point is that Jesus is suffering --for real, and that there were witnesses. That may seem like a moot point to us, but in the early Christian Church the historicity of his death, the reality of his human suffering, and the idea that God would allow his "son" to die like this were all serious questions being debated. Let me suggest that today people STILL ask those very same questions, as will our kids.

Tastes and smells are the memory-forming sensory gold we look for in the Cooking Workshop. I have used the tasting of different food items before in other Cooking Workshop lessons, so I knew that most kids would be willing to smell and taste a small spoonful of vinegar (bitter wine, wine mixed with gall) and that their predictable negative reaction is exactly what I wanted to happen.

Some questions I might ask my kids:

  1. What does "bitter" mean? Name some "bitter" tasting things. Name some "bitter words" that people sometimes say to each other. Name some "bitter tasting" events or experiences that all people feel at some time in their life. (rejection, put-downs, losing)

  2. How is vinegar used in cooking and flavoring foods?  (salads, bbq sauce, catsup) Explain that vinegar was also used as food additive, as medicine, and as a preservative back then as it is now.  Share some pickles.

  3. Explain why they had wine and wine vinegar (in those days wine in various recipes and strengths was a staple and safer than water. Wine mixed with medicinal herbs like myrrh may have been used to sedate prisoners).

  4. If the wine mixed with gall was an act of mercy, what does it say about the soldiers? (See Mk 15:39 for the Centurion's comment that "when he saw how Jesus died.... truly this is...")

  5. Why did they offer Jesus wine vinegar to keep him alive? (It seems to suggest that some in the crowd still believed Jesus might be the Messiah.)

  6. If Jesus had died and not come back to life, would you still believe in him?  (Read Isaiah 53 the psalm of the Suffering Servant!)

  7. it is good to remember the sweet parts of the story, the chocolate-covered pretzels and marshmallow "Empty Tomb Crescent Rolls" ...but let's not forget what really happened to Jesus. People like us killed Jesus. it was our sins he took upon himself.

        How does that make you feel?

        What does that make you want to do in response?

  8. How does tasting this story "preserve it" in your heart? What do you want to preserve about it?

I might also create a take-home taste-test that shares your lesson. Most homes have vinegar to taste, but maybe not grapes, so if you have time, have some grapes to eat and some to take home. What order should they be tasted?  The bitter BEFORE the sweet is like confession before forgiveness. Until we admit our sins we cannot appreciate Jesus' sacrifice for us.

Some More Bible Background

Matthew 27:33

They came to a place called Golgotha (which means “the place of the skull”).

34 There they offered Jesus wine to drink, mixed with gall; but after tasting it, he refused to drink it.

35 When they had crucified him, they divided up his clothes by casting lots.

And again in verse Matthew 27:48

48 Immediately one of them ran and got a sponge. He filled it with wine vinegar, put it on a staff, and offered it to Jesus to drink. 49 The rest said, “Now leave him alone. Let’s see if Elijah comes to save him.”

50 And when Jesus had cried out again in a loud voice, he gave up his spirit.

Culturally speaking, we know that sour or bitter wine was part of the Roman diet. It was apparently a common type of wine drunk by soldiers and the low income, and at times by all people for its medicinal benefits. Paul himself recommends it to Timothy for his stomach (1 Tim 5:23). Most wine in those days was not the clear red we have today, it was often mixed with herbs and sweeteners depending on the cost or use. Today, people drink vinegar as a health additive, to support digestive health, and we use vinegar to preserve foods. The metaphorical possibilities ABOUND!  But sometimes details in stories are merely details, and not meant to have deep metaphorical significance.

In the early years of Christianity. the story's details would have initially served as "evidence" to people who had never heard the story, or who questioned its truthfulness. They add a sense of historical authenticity that the crucifixion really happened, that Jesus really suffered and sacrificed himself for our sins. In the early Church, there was a heresy known as "docetism" which denied the suffering of Jesus. Paul mentions certain critics who consider the suffering of Jesus to be a "stumbling block" to belief. And people today have the same problem. Some doubt Jesus ever existed, and they have a hard time believing that God would allow Jesus to die like this. The story needs to be told and remembered to be believed, and thus, being able to unforgettably taste and smell the story creates a teachable moment too good to pass up.


Images (4)
  • I-Thirst
  • mceclip0
  • Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Vinegar used to pickle, preserve
Last edited by Neil MacQueen

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