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Jesus Lives

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JESUS LIVES 

Scripture: Mark 16:1–11; John 14:19

Memory verse: John 14:19
"Because I live, you also will live."

Lead—In

Before class, write on separate pieces of paper, “Obey first boss. Disobey second boss.” Also, make two name tags that say “BOSS.”

In class explain that you are going to conduct an experiment. Pin the nametags to two volunteers. They should stand at one end of the classroom. The remaining students can arrange their chairs to face them. Show the seated students the paper to read silently, not revealing the message to the “bosses.”

Tell the “bosses” to alternately give commands, such as “stand up,” “raise your right hand,” or “turn around.” The students should obey the first boss, but not the second. After a few commands, the second boss may point out that the students are not obeying him. Ask him if he feels like a boss. Then let him explain why he does not. Help the students understand that having a title is not enough. A person is not really a boss unless those under him obey him.

Ask: “If a stranger were watching as each boss gave commands, how would he know which one was the real boss?” Explain that the one the students choose to obey is their boss.

Ask the class to explain how they can allow someone to be their boss. Then explain that another word for boss might be lord. In today’s study they will learn how to make a special Person their Lord.

Hearing the Word

Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection are like two sides of the same coin. Each event depends on the other; neither is complete by itself.

Each of the four Gospel writers told of these two events in slightly different ways because of their different viewpoints. In this week’s study we are going to focus on Mark’s account. (Ask the students to locate Mark 16:11 in their Bibles.)

Women Come to Anoint Jesus’ Body

Ask: “Who were the women who came to Jesus’ tomb?” (Mary, the mother of James; Mary Magdalene, and Salome.)

Ask: Why were they coming? (To anoint Jesus' body with spices.)

By anointing Jesus' body for burial, these women were wanting to show their love for their friend. This happened to Jesus once before His crucifixion. 

Ask: “Can anyone remember when this was?”* (Briefly review John 12:1-3 when Mary anointed Jesus in Bethany.)

In both instances, the women were showing their devotion and respect for Jesus.

Jesus had been crucified three days before this, but the women had not been able to go to the tomb earlier because the Sabbath had begun shortly after His death. (A Jewish day begins at 6 p.m.) During the Sabbath, no work was to be done. So early on the morning after the Sabbath, the women headed for the place where Jesus was buried.

Who Will Roll Away the Stone?

The women arrived just as the sun was rising. On the way, they discussed a problem they anticipated: who would roll away the huge stone that was in front of Jesus’ tomb?

The fact that the three women wondered about the stone tells us one definite thing about them. They did not believe Jesus would rise again after He died.

When the three women reached the tomb, they were probably surprised. The huge stone was moved already!

An Angel and His Message

Even bigger surprises lay ahead for them. They went into the tomb. What did they see? (Ask a student to read and explain Mark 16:5.)

A young man dressed in long white clothing was sitting inside the tomb, or sepulchre. This frightened the women. They had expected to find only Jesus’ dead body. Here was a stranger—an angel!

The angel said, “Do not be alarmed….You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid him” (Mark 16:6). Jesus’ body was gone. If the angel had not been there, these three women might have thought the body had been stolen. The angel made it clear what had happened to Jesus. He had risen from the dead!

Instructions to the Women

What wonderful and joyous news! For three days they had thought they would never see Jesus alive again. Now this angel was telling them He was alive!

Jesus had told His disciples He would meet them in the country of Galilee after His resurrection. The angel told the three women to remind the disciples to be there.

Special Mention of Peter

The angel made special mention of Peter.

Ask: “Why did the angel single out this one disciple?” (Allow discussion. Briefly tell of Peter’s denial of Jesus.)

Peter was an example of a person who let Jesus down. The angel was making a point about God’s forgiveness. Even though Peter turned his back on Jesus when Jesus needed him the most, Jesus still loved him. Peter was sorry for his failure and Jesus forgave him.

Peter felt miserable after he denied Jesus. He was sorry for this sin. The Bible says he cried afterward, and you can imagine how he ached inside during the following days. God saw to it that Peter was comforted. That is why the angel gave the women at the tomb special instructions for Peter.

The women did not say a word to anyone when they left the tomb. They were probably too frightened. According to Mark 16:9, 10, Mary Magdalene was the one who first told the disciples Jesus was alive.

The Disciples Are Sceptical

Ask: “What was the disciples’ reaction to Mary’s message?” (Ask a student to read Mark 16:11.)

Jesus’ own disciples did not believe Jesus was alive again. Why not? For one thing they were not really in tune with God. They had been with Jesus during His entire earthly ministry, yet their hearts were not prepared to take in what He told them. So when Jesus told them He must die for the sins of the world, they did not accept it. When He said He would rise again after three days, they did not understand it.

During one of His teachings, Jesus gave His disciples a promise. It is our memory verse. (Say the memory verse two or three times together.) Jesus was telling His disciples that because He would conquer death, they could live eternally in heaven with Him. At the time the disciples’ hearts were not prepared, and they did not understand His words.

As Christians today, we should read our Bibles to take advantage of this gift God has given us. We need to be in tune with God, spending time in prayer and Bible reading.

When Jesus is Lord

God’s love for us is great. When we make Jesus Lord of our lives, we can depend on God for many things. God’s Word shows us what these things are. Here are some examples. (List the following points on the chalkboard as you review past lessons on Jesus’ lordship.)

  1. God gave us His only Son. Jesus came to earth to provide our salvation. While on earth He experienced how we feel and what we go through every day.
  2. God gives us His miraculous power and promises. He will provide for our needs.
  3. God gives us salvation—the new birth—and all He asks in return is faith in Him and obedience to Him.
  4. God gives us His Word, the Bible, to live by and learn from.
  5. God gives divine healing and the promise of perfect health in perfect bodies when we join Him in heaven.
  6. God gives us a plan for our lives.
  7. God gives us the promise of heaven—the hope of eternal life—when we believe in Jesus.

Each of us is allowed to choose which way we will go. Jesus’ resurrection makes this possible. We have the opportunity to choose eternal life because Jesus conquered Satan and death when He rose from the grave. If you have not accepted Jesus as your personal Saviour and Lord, you are missing out on all God has for you and you are choosing an eternity of regret. You can experience new life today if you will accept Jesus and make Hi9m Lord of your life.

Accepting God’s Word

Ask a volunteer to quote the memory verse. Explain that the verse is a statement of fact as well as an invitation to anyone who will accept Jesus. Repeat the verse together as a class.

Remind the students that no one really wants to die. Ask if there are any who would like to accept Jesus’ invitation of eternal life. He died so we could have the choice of living with Him forever instead of facing eternal punishment for our sins. If we are truly sorry for our sins, confess them to Jesus, and ask His forgiveness, we will be forgiven.

God Ordained 

Our two-hour visit came to a close as the village needed time to make final preparations for the Muslim funeral. Our schedule didn’t permit us to stay for the burial, but we left some money with the sheik to assist with the expenses. This act of concern seemed to be deeply appreciated. 

It was a great visit and I could not help but sense it was “God-ordained.” A relational bridge was built and an invitation was extended for us to return. We were deeply moved by the openness of the people and the magnitude of their spiritual need. Our prayer is that God will use this report and pictures to call forth a messenger to proclaim the good news of the gospel to the Mwera. 

Mwera Prayer

Heavenly Father, thank you for sending your Son, Jesus the Christ, to die for the sins of the whole world. Not just the sins of my world but the world of the Mwera people group as well. 

There is a key that will unlock the door to the heart of these precious people to the gospel of your love. May you speak to the heart of that person or persons that hold that key and move them to understand how to use it that the Mweras may come to know and experience the saving grace of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Your word tells us that you are not willing that any should perish and it is upon this declaration that we stand for these souls.

Father, we know that you hear us when we pray according to your will and if we know this we also know we have the petitions we desire of the Lord. Thank you as we lay claim to the Mwera people group in Jesus' Name! Amen. 

Remember: JESUS LIVES

Memory verse: John 14:19
"Because I live, you also will live."

1. Jesus lives! The Bible tells me so!
2. Because Jesus lives, I am not afraid of what the future holds.
3. Jesus holds my hand and will walk with me all the way to heaven.

Pray for God to give messengers the key that will unlock the hearts of the Mwera.

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Study 16 | Will of God / Jesus is Lord | africaatts.org/go-teach

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