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Lesson Prep

Background Scripture (read 2-3 times during the week)

Mark 2:1-12

Story Summary

(this story can also be found in Matthew 9:1-8 and Luke 5:17-26)

This story is short enough that it does not need a summary. Simply read it from the Bible.

Here are some highlights, though:

  • This occurred in Capernaum, which was a home-base for Jesus during his ministry. It is on the northern shore of the Sea of Galilee.
  • This story has many details in it that help us envision the setting:
    • The story happened in the home where Jesus was staying
    • The house was so full, no one could even get in the door
    • Four men were carrying this paralyzed man on a mat
    • They removed the roof and made an opening in the house
    • They used some method to lower the man in the house - use your imagination to figure out how they did that!
  • These men truly demonstrated faith, because they went out of their way to get this man to Jesus. They just knew that Jesus was going to be able to do something about his situation.
  • Jesus' first response to the man was not to heal him, but to forgive his sins. When the scribes accused him of blasphemy for that, Jesus performed the miracle to show that he had the authority both to heal and to forgive sins.

What You Will Need

Supplies
New Testament Bible map (to show where Capernaum was located, on the northern shore of the Sea of Galilee)
Snack Suggestion
Provide fruit roll ups or graham cracker mats. Place a teddy graham on the mat.

Resource Sheet

A Paralyzed Man is Healed Coloring Sheet

This coloring sheet depicts the paralyzed man's four friends lowering him down through the roof so Jesus could heal him.

Lesson

1. Warm Up

get your kids talking and engaged

Where is the most crowded place you've ever been? Some examples could be: a state fair, a major league sporting event, a subway in a busy city, Black Friday shopping, etc.

How did you feel? Were you able to get where you were going quickly?

Today, we're going to learn about a man who really needed to see Jesus, but he couldn't get to him because it was so crowded!

2. Teach the Story

teach a holistic story

Read story from a Children's storybook Bible for younger children.

For older children, read the story from an age-appropriate Children's storybook Bible or read directly from the Bible.

3. Bible Mastery

give them basic Bible skills

Scripture for Kids to Read Aloud: Mark 2:1-12

4. Comprehension Questions

make sure they understand the story

First, ask the children if they have any questions about the story. What to do if you don't know the answer?

  • Where did this story take place? (where Jesus was living in Capernaum)
  • Why was the house so crowded? (everyone heard Jesus was back and they wanted to come see him. He was preaching the word to them)
  • What did the man need from Jesus? (he needed to be healed, because he was paralyzed and couldn't walk)
  • Who brought the man to Jesus? (4 men were carrying him on a mat)
  • How did they get the man to Jesus, since the house was so crowded? (they took off the roof, made an opening, and lowered him down on the mat they were carrying him on)
  • How did they lower the man down from the roof to the ground floor? (we don't really know, so use your imagination!)
  • What did Jesus do first for the man? (he forgave his sins)
  • Who wasn't happy that Jesus claimed he could forgive sins? (the scribes, people in charge of copying the scriptures)
  • What did Jesus do next? (he healed the man and told him to pick up his mat, walk, and go home)

5. Faith Questions

help them apply the story to their lives and open up a conversation about faith and the gospel; close with prayer
  • This man and his friends were determined to get to Jesus, because they had faith that Jesus was the only one who could really heal him.
  • Jesus is the only one who can forgive our sins as well. But we don't have to fight through a crowd to get to Jesus. We can ask him to forgive our sins by praying to him. Have you prayed to him and asked him to forgive your sins?

6. Memory Verse

hide God's Word in their heart
Be kind and tender to one another. Forgive each other, just as God forgave you because of what Christ has done. Ephesians 4:32

Reinforcement Activities

Mat Races Relay

Scripture Some men came carrying a man who could not walk. He was lying on a mat. They tried to take him into the house to place him in front of Jesus. They could not find a way to do this because of the crowd. So they went up on the roof. Then they lowered the man on his mat through the opening in the roof tiles. They lowered him into the middle of the crowd, right in front of Jesus. Luke 5:18-19

Supplies blankets, 4 adults or older children

  • Split children into two teams.
  • Each team needs 2 adults and one blanket.
  • Adults carry children on blanket, one at a time, for the relay.
  • First team to get all the children to the other end wins!

Standing Man

Scripture I tell you,” he said, “get up. Take your mat and go home.” he man got up and took his mat. Then he walked away while everyone watched. All the people were amazed. They praised God and said, “We have never seen anything like this!” Mark 2:11-12

Supplies Standing man cut out

  • Print copies of the standing man cut out.
  • Cut out man.
  • Fold man's legs in accordion fashion.
Standing Man Example

Shoe Box House

Scripture Four of those who came were carrying a man who could not walk. But they could not get him close to Jesus because of the crowd. So they made a hole in the roof above Jesus. Then they lowered the man through it on a mat. Mark 2:3-4

Supplies shoe box for each student, card stock, markers or crayons, string, hole punch.

  • Cut a hole in the top of the shoe box.
  • Cut a piece of cardstock just slightly smaller than the hole.
  • Tie string to both sides of the card stock and draw a picture of a man lying down.
  • Optional: draw pictures of people. Fold the bottom edge back and glue to the bottom of the shoe box to make them stand. These people represent Jesus and others gathered.
  • Have students retell story and act out lowering the mat into the shoe box house.

No Walking!

Scripture Four of those who came were carrying a man who could not walk. Mark 2:3

  • Provide the students with free time to play or give them a list of tasks to complete.
  • The catch is, they cannot walk or use their legs while they play or complete activities.

Weaving Mats

Scripture But they could not get him close to Jesus because of the crowd. So they made a hole in the roof above Jesus. Then they lowered the man through it on a mat. Mark 2:4

Supplies Construction paper with slits cut, strips of different colored construction paper

  • Weave mats using construction paper strips.
  • Cut slits most of the length of the construction paper sheet.
  • Weave paper strips through slits, going under and over.
  • Hold in place with glue or staples.
  • Draw a picture of a man and glue to the mat

Cloth Mats with Popsicle Man

Scripture Some men came carrying a man who could not walk. He was lying on a mat. They tried to take him into the house to place him in front of Jesus. Luke 5:18

Supplies fabric squares, popsicle sticks, glue, markers, string

  • Make a popsicle stick man by gluing 2 popsicle sticks in the shape of a cross.
  • Draw a face on the top and clothes on the rest.
  • Make holes in the fabric square by cutting small holes.
  • Tie string to the fabric square.
  • Place man on the mat.

Make Parachutes

Scripture Some men came carrying a man who could not walk. He was lying on a mat. They tried to take him into the house to place him in front of Jesus. They could not find a way to do this because of the crowd. So they went up on the roof. Then they lowered the man on his mat through the opening in the roof tiles. They lowered him into the middle of the crowd, right in front of Jesus. Luke 5:18-19

Supplies supplies to make parachutes (plastic bags, fabric, card stock, thick napkins or paper towel, string, paperclips, eggs or small plastic men

  • Provide students with supplies to make their own parachutes.
  • Test parachutes to see if their creations are successful.
  • Attach eggs to parachutes for outside play or plastic figures for inside play.