Scripture: Matthew 5:1-7:29, Luke 6:20-49
- Students will learn God cares about our heart.
- Students will learn actions that appear good cannot cover a heart that is sinful.
- Students will learn although God forgives us of our sins, He expects a higher standard of behavior from us than the world does.
- Students will learn how God wants them to have a godly heart.
Guiding Question: How can students learn how God wants their heart to be?
Materials: Paper, drawing utensils, scissors
Procedure: Review the story of the Sermon on the Mount with the students. Tell students that God expects us to try and live our lives the best we can. He knows we will make mistakes and sin because we are not perfect. Even so, He still expects better behavior from us than what the world may expect from us. God wants us not to take revenge on someone but to be the bigger person and handle the situation in a godly manner. The world may tell us to get back at someone but God does not want us to treat others that way.
Create an anchor chart with students about what the people in the story thought was okay: Example – On one side, eye for an eye and on the other side what God really wanted – turn the other cheek. Point out that the rabbis had turned the law into just rules about behavior. God cares about our hearts and Jesus wanted us to know the difference a godly heart makes. Have students draw hearts (can label – it’s about the heart – if they want) and jot down the ways Jesus says God wants our hearts to be.
Additional Questions: How can students model godly behavior?
Supplemental Activity: Have students work in partners or groups to perform skits where they would need to show godly behavior in a tough situation.