Forgiveness is a hard concept for children to understand and it is an even harder concept for them to put into action. This Bible Lesson is designed to introduce children to the concept of forgiveness. This lesson was created to be used in a Sunday School or Kids Church setting, however it can be adapted to be used at preschool or at home.
Objective: To teach children to forgive
Targeted Age Group: Preschool
Say: We all do bad things; sometimes we aren’t kind to our parents, sometimes we take cookies without asking, and sometimes we don’t play nicely with others. When we do something wrong it is called sin and when we sin we need to ask Jesus to forgive us. When we ask Jesus to forgive us He ALWAYS washes away our sin and makes our hearts clean.
Game: I Forgive You: Have foam hearts, washable markers, bowls of soapy water, and towels prepared before the lesson. Get the kids to draw all over their foam hearts, once the heart is all “dirty” get the kids to wash their hearts clean.
Worship: (Please note: if you do not have copies of these songs then you can find them on YouTube)
- Free as a Bee (Hillsong Kids)
- Jesus Loves Me
- The Butterfly Song
Prayer: Dear Jesus, thank you so much that we are able to get together and learn about you. We pray that you open each of our hearts to hear what you want to teach us about forgiveness today. We love you! Amen.
Story Reinforcement: Have a big black heart with pictures of sad faces and a big white heart with pictures of happy faces. Show each of these hearts at the appropriate time during the lesson.
Lesson: What types of things make you sad? (give them time to answer). It makes me sad when people don’t want to talk with me. It makes me sad when my friends aren’t playing nicely, and it makes me sad when people take toys from me. Do you think it makes God sad? (give them time to answer). Yes, it does make God sad, but God always chooses to forgive others and He wants us to forgive others too. Sometimes our friends do things that we don’t like, and although these things can make us sad we can forgive them. Does anybody know what forgiveness means? (give them time to answer). Forgiveness means that we are no longer angry.
The Bible says,
Then Peter came up and said to him, “Lord, how often will my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? As many as seven times?” Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you seven times, but seventy-seven times, (Matthew 18:21-22, ESV).
This means that we keep forgiving people even when they keep hurting our feelings. Forgiveness helps us to be happy, it allows us to have something called peace. Does anybody know what peace means? (give them time to answer). Peace means that we are free from anger. Jesus can help us to forgive others, when you are frustrated you can pray that Jesus can help you in the situation.
- Who forgives us? (Answer: Jesus)
- Who helps you to forgive others? (Answer: Jesus)
- What does forgiveness bring? (Answer: Peace)
Craft: Forgiving Hearts: Let the kids decorate multiple hearts that say, “I forgive you,” tell the kids to give them to their friends the next time their friends hurt their feelings.
Suggested Snack: Heart-shaped cookies and juice