Doctrine for Kids: Part 2 of 2

by Timothy Pollard on Thursday, January 05, 2006

When you think of Christian doctrine, what is the first thing that comes to mind? Doctrine, as defined by the Holman Illustrated Bible Dictionary, is "Christian teaching about God, the gospel, and the comprehensive pattern of Christian truth."

You may ask yourself, "As a teacher of boys and girls, how do I teach these Christian truths?" The answer lies in knowing and understanding the age group you teach and communicating at their level.

Recall from our last article that boys and girls will begin to develop foundational doctrinal truths centered on such areas as God, Jesus, the Bible, creation, family, self, church, salvation, Holy Spirit, the community, and the world. We share these basic truths weekly by helping boys and girls learn that God is good, God is special, Jesus is God's son, and that God is the Creator of everything. Boys and girls can also learn to understand who they are through God and how God can use each boy and girl to accomplish His plan for the world. Having an understanding of the Bible and how they fit into their families are also important truths that all girls and boys will learn through Sunday school.

Let's take a look at the doctrines of the Lord's Supper and Christian responsibility.

The Lord's Supper

Jesus chose to institute the Lord's Supper during the last Passover He celebrated with His disciples. Passover is a yearly celebration during which Jews remember God's deliverance of their nation from Egypt, and how the angel passed over those homes that had been marked with blood from a lamb. Jesus, through His actions at this supper, showed Himself to be that sacrificial lamb. As Jesus took the bread and shared it with His friends He told them, "This is My body, which is given for you" (Luke 22:19). The bread represented or, as stated before, is a picture of the body of Jesus. It was not actually the body of Jesus. Jesus' further command in Luke 22:19 was, "Do this in remembrance of Me."

Every time Christians celebrate the Lord's Supper, it is important to help them know that the bread and cup are not the actual body and blood of Jesus but serve as reminders that Jesus gave up His life on the cross so that all people could have salvation. The Lord's Supper, like baptism, is an ordinance of the church and is also to be celebrated following a person's salvation.

Christian responsibility

God has given all people spiritual gifts. It is the Christian's responsibility to use those gifts to please and honor God. First Corinthians 12:7 says, "A manifestation of the Spirit is given to each person to produce what is beneficial." Not everyone is given the same gift, but everyone has a gift. God intends for boys and girls who are Christians to understand what their gifts are and how to use them to glorify Him. Relying on the Holy Spirit to guide them in this understanding will be crucial to them knowing and using their gifts now and in the future.

The rest of 1 Corinthians 12 explains that God's desire for the church is to function as a body, each person using his own gift. Help boys and girls understand that God's plan for them is to discover their gifts and to work with other Christians to fulfill God's purpose for the church.

Think about how God intends for you to share His love with boys and girls. When the opportunity arises, you can help guide a child to a clearer understanding of what it truly means to be a Christian.

Timothy Pollard is a biblical and instructional specialist in Childhood Ministry Publishing at LifeWay Church resources. Tim teaches sixth-grade boys at First Baptist Church, Mt. Juliet, Tennessee.

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