Family Sunday School Devotion for June 28
“Jesus Healed a Man who was Blind” from John 9
Listen to- “Light of the World” from Matt Redman here:
Later, during the Missions Moment, for older children, watch this video about Amy Carmichael here:
Supplies Needed- For younger kids: red paper, green paper (can be scraps or even fabric); for older kids: piece of paper and pencil; optional key passage activity: paper and pencil, written out key passage
Summary- Jesus healed a man who could not see.
Introduction Younger Kid Activity- Say if You Believe Place green and red papers on opposite sides of the room. Ask questions that include a statement that may or may not be accurate. Instruct kids to move to the green paper if they believe the statement and to the red paper if they don’t. Make up your own questions or use the following: The sky is purple; A whale would make a good pet; Broccoli tastes good; I am the tallest person in the room; I can count to 100; Jesus is God’s Son. Say, “In today’s Bible story, Jesus asked a man, ‘Do you believe in the Son of Man?’ The Son of Man is a name that Jesus often called Himself. Jesus is fully God and fully man. Jesus was asking the man if he believed in Him. Listen to the Bible story to hear how the man answered.”
Introduction Older Kid Activity- Twenty Questions Give one child a piece of paper and a pencil. Assign the child a topic (animals, countries, foods, sports, famous people, jobs, etc.) Have the child think of a word that fits the topic and write it on the piece of paper, keeping it hidden from everyone else. Have the child announce the topic and then answer yes-and-no questions to figure out what the mystery word written on the paper is. Play another round with a different topic if you like. Say, “Asking questions is a great way to get answers about something you don’t know. In the Bible story we will hear today, a man who was healed did not know who the Son of Man is. Jesus opened the man’s eyes to the truth about Jesus. I can’t wait for you to hear more!”
Big Picture Question- Say, “As we get into our story, let’s review our Big Picture Question: Why did God create people? The answer to our question is: God created people to worship Him, love Him, and show His glory. God didn’t need us to love or worship Him; He is perfect and needs nothing. Creating us so we could experience His love and celebrate His greatness was just one way God shows His goodness. When we do what we are created to do, it glorifies God and blesses us.”
Bible Story- Timeline Say, “Three weeks ago, we learned that Jesus healed ten men, and one was saved. Then, we talked about a time Jesus healed a woman and raised a girl from the dead. Last week, we learned that Jesus healed a man who could not walk. This week, we will look at one more story in which Jesus worked a miracle to heal a person. This time, our story is about Jesus’ healing of a man who had been born blind.” Open a Bible to John 9:1-41. Say, “Remember, you can search the table of contents to figure out which page John starts on. A long time ago, Bible scholars (people who study the Bible and help to translate it from Hebrew and Greek, the languages the books of the Bible were first written down in) added the large chapter numbers and the small verse numbers to help us organize and study God’s Word.” Read or tell the story in your own words from this passage (this story is not included in the Big Picture Interactive Bible Storybook).
Christ Connection- Say, “Our sin makes us unable to see the truth about God. Jesus came as a light in a dark world. He came to give us sight- true understanding of God and His kingdom. Those who trust in Jesus see who He is and worship Him. In a way, we are all born blind because we are born dead in sin. We cannot understand God’s Word. We cannot see the truth of the Gospel. Thankfully, God reveals Himself to us in the Bible so that we can have faith and live forever with Him.”
Key Passage- Open a Bible to Isaiah 53:4-5. Read the verses aloud. Say, “Jesus died on the cross and rose again to give us eternal life with God and to heal us from the damage sin causes.” Optional activity: Using either an open Bible or a written-out copy of the key passage, give each family member a pencil. Give one person a piece of paper and have him or her read aloud and then write the first word of the passage. Pass the paper to the next person, who will read aloud the written word, say the second word, and write it down. Continue until the entire passage is recorded. Say, “Great work, everyone! These words from Isaiah were written hundreds of years before Jesus was born. Jesus came to earth to rescue us from sin, death, and darkness. He is worthy of our worship.”
Review Questions- Ask the following questions:
- *PreK- Why did Jesus say the man was blind? (so people could see God’s power)
- *PreK- What did Jesus do with the mud that He mixed together? (Jesus put it on the blind man’s eyes and then told him to wash it off)
- *PreK- What happened after the man rinsed the mud off his eyes? (the man could see)
- What did the religious leaders do to the healed man? (John 9:34)
- In what ways are we like the man born blind? (Guide kids to consider what it means to be born in sin. Help them see that spiritual blindness prevents us from being able to pursue God on our own. Guide kids to discuss what it feels like to be in darkness. Point out both the fear of the dark that some have and also the practical limitations of doing things in the dark.)
- Why do you think Jesus calls Himself the Light of the World? (Help kids understand the ways in which Jesus “lights up” our life, such as helping us see and understand God’s truth, giving us joy, and helping us walk in obedience to God. Point out that, while it is difficult to do things in the dark, light helps us work.)
- How can we be given “spiritual light”? (Direct kids to think about the message of the Gospel. Help them see that they cannot earn salvation, but it is given freely to those with faith in Jesus’ death and resurrection. Remind them that with salvation comes new life and the Holy Spirit’s help to love and obey God.)
- Why did God create people? (God created people to worship Him, love Him, and show His glory.)
Say, “Jesus gave sight to a man who was blind. In a similar way, Jesus gives us spiritual sight when we trust in Him. God forgives our sins and opens our eyes to see the truth of His Word. The Holy Spirit helps us love and obey God.”
For Older Kids- Also, ask the following questions:
- Why was the man born blind? (Lead kids to recall Jesus’ answer to the disciples. Emphasize that Jesus was saying that the man’s blindness was not a consequence of his sin. Sometimes our suffering is caused by our own sin, but often suffering is the result of living in a fallen world. This is why we needed Jesus to come into the world and “light up” our lives. Read John 1:4-14)
- How does knowing Jesus cause us to think differently about suffering? (read Romans 5:3-5; and 8:18, 28)
Reflection- Ask older children to answer one of the following questions:
- What does this story teach me about God or the Gospel?
- What does the story teach me about myself?
- Whom can I tell about this story?
Missions Moment- Say, “We have been learning about missionary Amy Carmichael and how she spent her whole life helping others. She started an orphanage called Dohnavur Fellowship in a small village in South India where kids could experience the healing, love, and power of Jesus. Kids there still learn about ‘Amma’, the woman who loved children and told them about Jesus. Today, the fellowship is more than a home for children who do not have a family; it is also a farm, a hospital, a church, a dairy, and a school. God has grown the work ‘Amma’ started, and kids today still experience the love of Jesus at Dohnavur Fellowship.” For older children, watch the video above of an interview with some of the girls Amy Carmichael rescued.
Pray- Do a popcorn prayer, where each person adds one sentence to the prayer and the last person says, “Amen.” Suggestions for prayer: pray for the children in India who need to hear the Gospel so they can have their eyes opened to the truth about Jesus and believe in Him as their Savior from sin; thank God for the work of missionaries around the world; ask God for help telling people we already know about Jesus.
Adult Sunday School Devotion for June 28
“Jesus Heals a Man Born Blind” from John 9
Listen to- “Light of the World” from Tim Hughes here:
and- “Great Light of the World” from Bebo Norman here:
Summary- In the healing of the man who was born blind, Jesus revealed that He is the light who has come into the world to remove darkness.
Christ Connection- When we trust in Jesus, our sin and spiritual blindness are removed and we are able to see the light of the world in all His glory and beauty.
Point 1. Jesus came to be light in the darkness (read aloud John 9:1-7).
Note- The prevailing thought of the disciples was: If you obey God, you earn blessing, and if something bad happens to you, then you must have done something bad to earn it. (Modern-day examples of this way of thinking are: If you get a raise, you must have read your Bible faithfully. If your child gets sick, he or she, or you or your spouse, must have done something terrible. If a natural disaster hits your city, someone or a group of people must have been sinning their socks off.) In this, Jesus’ disciples sounded a bit like Job’s friends when they assumed that calamity befell Job because of his sin, though that was actually Satan’s doing with the permission of God (see Job 1-2; 4:7-8). The world is not a mathematical function where if you put in a certain value, you always get a corresponding value. Sometimes good actions lead to bad outcomes and vice versa.
Note- All brokenness and suffering are a result of the fall in Genesis 3. Adam and Eve’s sin brought curses and death into the world, so all suffering is a result of sin in general. Certainly, there are some illnesses and suffering directly attributed to specific sins and personal choices. In Numbers 12, for example, Miriam sinned against Moses, so God struck her with leprosy. Likewise, sex outside marriage may lead to sexually transmitted diseases. Jesus seems to have attributed the man at Bethesda’s condition to his sin (see John 5:14). But as Jesus pointed out in today’s passage, not all suffering is attributable to someone’s specific sin.
Respond- Why are we prone to connect all suffering to a person’s sins?
Point 2. Jesus came to do the works of God (read aloud John 9:29-33).
Note- The formerly blind man’s neighbors were astounded that he now could see, so they took him to the Pharisees, who questioned him about his healing. When he attributed his healing- once again on the Sabbath- to Jesus, they interrogated the man’s parents to verify if he really was blind before. The Pharisees didn’t want to believe that this man had been healed because they refused to acknowledge Jesus’ significance and power. History is full of remarkable men and women who did fantastic feats and greatly impacted the world. But Jesus is unique because He isn’t just any man. He is the Son of Man, the Savior who has come into the world, fully God and fully man.
Respond- What are some ways Jesus supersedes the greatness of people throughout history?
Note- Jesus does the works of God because Jesus is from God (see John 5:36), and if this is true, then Jesus’ works show us what God cares about. What did Jesus do? Just in this narrative, He corrected a misunderstanding, taught with truth, healed the blind, befriended the marginalized, and confronted the proud. All these things show God’s love for us, but they also reveal His plan to push back the darkness and undo the brokenness in the world and restore creation. The greatest of Jesus’ works was in His death and resurrection, by which He secured forgiveness of sins and a restored relationship with God for those who believe in Him. He lived a sinless life, bore the punishment for our sin in His death, and conquered the grave in His resurrection. He did what no one else could ever do- save us and restore us to the Father. The promise of salvation and restoration is available to anyone who will believe and trust in Him. This work of the Gospel also grants the believer a mission and a purpose. Because of what Christ has done to reconcile us to the Father, we are now called as His agents of reconciliation to do His work on the earth, looking forward to the day when He makes all things new (see 2 Corinthians 5:16-21).
Point 3. Jesus came to confront spiritual blindness (read aloud John 9:35-41).
Note- This man went from describing Jesus as a mere man to calling Him a prophet to saying that Jesus must be from God. But his confession here was altogether different- he called Jesus “Lord” and worshiped Him as Lord. “Lord” in that day was a polite way of addressing a man, similar to “sir” or “mister”, which is how the man used the word in verse 36. But “Lord” also was used to refer to the God of the Scriptures- Yahweh- and in verse 38, the man referred to Jesus as divine, as shown by his willingness to worship this Son of Man in the flesh. He didn’t come to this belief on his own but by the work of God in his heart through the Holy Spirit. The man who could not see anything earlier in the day now saw Jesus and saw Him for who He is. He didn’t just receive physical sight; this man received spiritual sight. Through the power of the Holy Spirit, he confessed with his mouth that Jesus is Lord and worshiped Him. This is precisely what happens to every Christian at the moment of conversion.
Respond- What are some ways we can worship our Lord and Savior for the healing from sin that He gives to us?
Note- Imagine this miracle story if Jesus had come to the blind man stumbling along, bumping into every wall, and tripping over every rock and asked if he wanted so see, but the blind man retorted: “What do you mean? I CAN see!” This was the condition of the Pharisees, who were blind to their own blindness. Since they thought they could see spiritually, they refused to come to Jesus and believe, and so, they continued to be enslaved to sin. Their prideful sin prevented them from seeing Jesus as the light of the world. Sometimes we can act just like the Pharisees, but we can avoid making the same mistakes as these leaders by embracing a humble, teachable posture. How do you respond when someone points out sin in your life? Thankful or defensive? Unless we acknowledge our need, we will be blind to God’s provision.
Conclusion- The vast majority of people on this planet can see, and we often take that for granted. Likewise, believers may take for granted the gift of spiritual sight made possible by Jesus’ death and resurrection for us. We have seen the glory and beauty of Jesus by faith and lived in His light, but the world still lives in spiritual darkness. We have been blessed by hearing the Gospel to see Jesus; will we share that same Gospel with others so they too can believe and see for the first time?
Apply- Because Jesus has given us sight, we live fully in the light revealed to us as we seek to make Jesus known to others so that their spiritual blindness might be removed as well.
-How will you live in the light of Jesus so others become aware of their spiritual darkness and need for a Savior?
(Give thanks to God for His gift of spiritual sight. Thank Him for sending Jesus, the light of the world who removes spiritual darkness. Ask for help from the Holy Spirit to lead you in making Jesus known to the spiritually blind.)