Scripture: Matthew 26:57-27:10, Mark 14:53-72, Luke 22:54-71, John 18:12-27
- Students will learn people told lies to try and convict Jesus, but the Jewish leaders finally wanted him killed because he told them he was the Son of God.
- Students will learn God wants us to admit we are Christians even when it scares us to do so.
- Students will learn even though Jesus did not deserve to be crucified, he agreed to it because he knew his sacrifice was necessary to obtain forgiveness of our sins.
- Students will participate in a mock trial to better understand the trial Jesus went through.
Guiding Question: How was Jesus convicted even though He was innocent?
Materials: Pencils, paper
Procedure: Share the story of the Trial of Jesus from the scriptures above. Explain that people at the trial turned their backs on Jesus and tried to convict Him by telling lies. The Jewish leaders were mad that Jesus said He was the Son of God so then they decided they wanted Him killed. Jesus admitted to being who He was even in a tough situation and modeled how God wants us to admit to being Christians even when it is tough. We never know when talking about being a Christian could help someone else become a Christian.
Explain that Jesus knew He was sent to take on the sins of mankind so that they could have a chance to be in Heaven which is why He went through with the crucifixion. He loves us all so much that He died an innocent death just so that He would get the chance to have a relationship with us. He knew that by sacrificing himself, we would be able to be forgiven for our sins.
Tell the students that they are going to participate in a mock trial of Jesus to better understand what He went though. Split the students into two groups. Tell one group to come up with a list of everything they know about Jesus – as son of God, miracles, teachings, etc. Tell the other group that they will represent all of the lies and tricks people used to try and get Jesus in trouble. Once the two sides decide how they are going to argue their side, lead the students in a mock trial. Make sure to give both sides an equal amount of time to share their reasons for conviction and no conviction.
Additional Questions: How can students better understand all of the sins Jesus died for?
Supplemental Activity: Have the students cut out a cross from construction paper and write their name in the middle of the cross. Have the students fill the cross with all of the sins they have commited that Jesus died for to forgive. Explain that Jesus forgives every sin from our past and in the future as long as we repent and ask for forgiveness.