- Students will learn even though God is patient, He is just and will eventually punish the wicked.
- Students will learn sometimes the earthly consequences for disobeying God are severe.
- Students will learn God is willing to reconcile to Him anyone who is willing to repent of their sins.
- Students will participate in an activity to make them aware of the millions of people who need to hear the Gospel message.
Guided Question: How can we share the Gospel with others, so they too can repent and become Christians?
Materials: wooden plaques, markers, paints, etc.
Procedure: Tell students the story of Zedekiah and the final fall of Jerusalem. Explain that the book of Lamentations was probably written by the prophet Jeremiah as he witnessed the Babylonians destroy Jerusalem.
Explain to students that this would be one of the saddest stories in the Bible, except for God’s love. Help students understand that although the Israelites were suffering severe consequences for disobeying God, God hadn’t given up on them. God loved them, just like He loves us. He wanted them to repent, just like He wants people today to repent of their sins and worship and obey Him.
In fact, a very hopeful passage is found in Lamentations 3:22-23.
The Lord loves us very much. So we haven’t been completely destroyed. His loving concern never fails.23 His great love is new every morning.Lord, how faithful you are!
Ask students if they recognize the verses from songs they might sing in church. Ask them why those verses would encourage us to repent and return to following God when we have sinned, just like they were meant to encourage the Israelites.
Give students the wooden plaques. Have them design a drawing. representing the people in the world that includes the verse (pre-writers will need an adult to write the verse for them). Encourage students to display the plaque where it will remind them how much God loves them. Older students may want to discuss ways of sharing this message with others and may choose to gift their plaque to someone who needs to be reminded how much God loves them.