God’s Story in Every Lesson

Knowing God vs. knowing about Him

by Mark Entzminger/ July 17, 2015

Reducing biblical teaching down to moralistic principles is an easy trap to fall into in kids’ ministry. We want to put the gospel into terms kids can easily understand while also teaching them good behavior. But reducing the gospel to simply good behavior is a dangerous and slippery slope that can cause kids to miss the message of salvation altogether. 

In order to teach the good news, we have to include it every single Sunday. So how can you make sure the message of the gospel is tied into every lesson your leaders teach? 

How to Tie in the Gospel to Every Kids’ Ministry Lesson 

Answer these three questions to evaluate if your Sunday morning experience ties everything back to the gospel rather than to moralism. 

1. Am I tying this story into the meta-narrative of Scripture? How does this story relate to God’s great story of redemption? While we can learn many things from how characters in the Bible lived, the reason God inspired His Word was to reveal His character and nature. When we begin to read Scripture through that lens we will find the connection to the gospel in amazing ways.

2. Are kids getting the chance to learn how the ideas and principles of this story connect with them and ultimately with Gods active role in their lives? How can they live differently today as a result of learning this truth? After teaching the principles and characteristics of God in the lesson, be sure to provide time for the Holy Spirit to speak to the kids. He will shine His light into their lives to help them see things you would never be able to reveal.

3. Are we giving kids the chance to experience and participate in how the lesson applies to their lives? Are we giving them tangible ways to engage? Make the lessons practical. While it’s easy to bring everything back to prayer, giving, church attendance, and worship (and we need to teach these things; don’t get me wrong), we also must consider the world that kids live in and find ways to make the lesson apply to their entire world. Faith should impact every aspect of their lives. 

Providing your leaders with this checklist is a great starting point to ensuring that your ministry teaches kids the meta-narrative of Scripture—not just the good characteristics of people in Bible stories. 

If you notice a teacher focusing on moralism rather than the gospel, what do you do to guide them toward gospel-centered teaching?