Into the Lesson
Display three posters of multiple-choice questions. A religious Christmas card attached to each roster will help students connect the season with the activity. Give each student three colored, self-adhesive dots when entering the classroom. Ask students to stick a dot on each poster near or on the best answer for each question.
Poster #1. The word Messiah is the Hebrew form of (a) Christ, meaning “creator-God”; (b)Christ, meaning “anointed one”; (c) Christ, meaning “redeemer”; (d) a song written by a man named Handel.
Poster #2. The word incarnation refers to (a)God becoming a man; (b) the virginity of Mary when giving birth to Jesus; (c) another name for communion; (d) a nation with lots of cars.
Poster #3. The word Immanuel means (a) “redeemer”; (b) “anointed one”; (c) “God with us” (d) “God against us.”
After the class members have made their voices by placing stickers on the posters, review each question. Give the correct answer and comment on the significance of each.
The answer to question #1 is b. Ask, “What does the title Messiah tell us about Jesus—His life and mission?” The answer to question #2s a. Say, “The incarnation is a difficult concept. Today’s text, however, enthusiastically explains is key to understanding Jesus’ identity and origin.” The answer to question #3 is c. Say, “Immanuel was introduced in Isaiah 7:14,neching us even more about the nature of Jesus.”Transition to Bible study by stating that these and other titles given to Jesus in the Gospel of help ass know our God and Savior better.
Into the Word
Begin this section of study with a brief lecture on some titles given to Jesus in the Gospel of
John. Also touch on the purpose of John’s Gospel. On the board or overhead write “Titles for Jesus.” As you speak, write some titles astound in the lesson Introduction. Give a brief explanation of each.
Next read today’s printed text. Then ask the discussion questions that follow. You may wish to announce the focus of each group of questions. (These questions are also in the student book; this can be a small-group activity, one group per Focus.)
Focus: Jesus as the Word (John 1:1-5): (1) Why do you think John chose to call Jesus “the Word”? (2) What truths do verses 1-5 teach us about the nature of Jesus? (3) Why do you think John chose this way to introduce Jesus rather than beginning with Jesus’ birth?
Focus: Jesus as the Light (John 1:6-13): (1) Why do you think John chose to insert John the Baptist into these verses? (2) What do verses 10-13teach us about how people respond to Jesus? What comfort or challenge does this bring to your life?
Focus: Jesus in the Flesh (John 1:14-18): (1)What are some of the earthshaking implications of the incarnation—of God becoming a man? (2)What do you think is the main point of this pas-sage of Scripture? (3) Why is the story of the in-carnation precious to Christians at this time of year?
Point to the three posters used at the beginning of class as you remind students that they have discovered a new and rich appreciation for words such as Immanuel, incarnation, Messiah. Say, “What happened was nothing less than God becoming flesh. This is our time to use that fact to help us walk more closely with Him.”
Ask the class to work in teams of two or thereto write an acrostic. This acrostic will provide some steps that will help change personal behavior from darkness to light, based on the word Messiah.
Give each team a poster board and marker with the letters to the word Messiah written vertically. Examples for the first three letters could be Maintain personal holiness. Expect God’s blessings, and Spend time in prayer.