We have a lot to talk about this morning. There is not much said about Jesus' growing up years but to put what is said into one class session is a bit much. Today's lesson starts with the visit of the wise men. This visit could have happened anywhere from his birth to when he was 2 years old. We're not sure, God didn't tell us, it isn't important to the story. What is important is that God chose to tell men that were not Jews that His Son had been born. These men knew that this was a special event and wanted to be part of it so they traveled from a great distance, following nothing but a star, to worship and offer gifts to the special baby.
The story then continues with Herod's slaughtering of the babies of Bethlehem. Such a sad story but not a surprise to those that had studied the scriptures. This event had been prophesied by Jeremiah. Joseph takes his family to Egypt just as the angel of the Lord had told him to. The family remained there until Herod died. Then, at the word of the angel, they moved back and settled in Nazareth.
The next event in Jesus' life is his visit to the temple as an older child. This is the first time we read anything that Jesus actually said. He not only amazes the teachers in the temple with knowledge and understanding but he says something that Mary keeps in her heart -- Why did you seek me? Did you not know that I must be about My Father's business?
Stations: As students come to class have them begin working in the stations. As soon as it is time for class to start, begin the lesson
Bible Reading: Remind students to put a sticker on the back of their project folder if they completed the Bible reading. They should soon be in the habit of doing this when they first come in.
Memory Work: Call the students together. Review NT books (Matthew, Mark, Luke). We'll add John this morning. Review Beatitudes.
Review: Let them tell the story of Jesus' birth.
Lesson: Read Matthew 2 and discuss the wise men's visit to baby Jesus. Read Luke 2:41-52 and discuss the events surrounding Jesus' visit to the temple.
Lesson Review Station: Demonstrate the folder activity that has the student choose between the real events that happened surrounding the birth of Christ and the events that the world has added in their Christmas celebrations.
Stations: If time allows, let students continue or start work at the stations.