Teens want to learn more about the Bible and enjoy participation in Sunday school class. Bible lessons should engage and challenge them and motivate them to pursue a closer relationship with God. One way to do this is to use a variety of teaching methods. Group games, prayer, having students take notes, discussion, object lessons and large and small group discussion all effectively engage teens. Teens usually enjoy classes that begin with an icebreaker. Ending with prayer helps conclude the class lesson.
Spirit, Soul, Body
According to the Bible, man is made up of three parts: spirit, soul and body. Most teens don't understand how the three relate to each other or what the difference is. After the icebreaker, read or have students read 2 Timothy 1:7, 1 Thessalonians 5:23 and 3 John 2. Draw a diagram on the white board of three circles; inside each one write "spirit," "soul" and "body." Explain that the spirit was saved in the past. The soul is being saved in the present and the body will be saved in the future. Describe how our soul, which includes our personality, is made up of the mind, will and emotions. These determine day-to-day responses and behavior. Godly choices mean the spirit is ruling our lives. Poor choices mean we are living according to the flesh. Demonstrate this by a tug-of-war. Put students on each side of the rope, and have them play tug-of-war. The flesh and spirit always war against each other. The soul, who can be another student, casts the deciding vote. Close by praying for a greater release of God's Spirit to control the souls and lives of each student.
The Trinity, the unity of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, can be a difficult concept to grasp for many teens. Discuss the Hebrew definition and the plural meaning of the word "God" in Genesis 1. Explain that the identity of each person of the Trinity, as God, is the same; the function of each member of the Trinity differs. Answer any questions the students have. Bring in liquid water, ice and a covered pan of boiling water for an object lesson. Exercise extreme caution with the boiling water; you may not want to use it for safety reasons. Explain that the identity of the liquid water, ice and steam are each H2O; only the form differs. Relate this to the three persons of the Trinity. Close in prayer for a closer relationship with the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
The Holy Spirit
Teens want to know more about the Holy Spirit, how He operates and the resulting power that comes through a close relationship with Him. Start the class by talking about the Holy Spirit, asking students what they already know and engaging in discussion. Compare Isaiah 63:11 and Acts 2. The Holy Spirit rested on people in the Old Testament but dwells in people since Pentecost. Use two clear cups and a pitcher of water for an object lesson. Pour water in one cup and put the other cup in the pitcher of water to demonstrate the difference between the Holy Spirit resting on and indwelling. Finish with group or individual prayer for each student to receive a new indwelling of the Holy Spirit.
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