Warning: You are using an old browser. For the sake of the entire Internet and to ensure all functionality works properly, please upgrade your browser.

Upgrade Internet Explorer Download Google Chrome

Lesson Prep

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

Luke 24:13-49; John 20:19-21:14; Matthew 28:16-20; 1 Corinthians 15:1-7

Story Summary

To put this story in context, see this visualization of the chronology of Holy Week.

After Jesus raised from the dead, he appeared to his disciples and many people to prove that he was indeed alive, and these stories are recorded in several places in the Bible. His first appearance was to 3 women (which we included in the Jesus is Alive! lesson), but we've chosen some scriptures that highlight the more memorable events after his initial appearances.

  • On the road to Emmaus (Luke 24:13-35) - As two of Jesus' disciples (Cleopas and an un-named disciple) were traveling to Emmaus from Jerusalem, Jesus appeared to them and talked with them. At first, they didn't recognize him, but that night at dinner, God revealed Jesus' identity to them. 
  • With the 10 disciples (Luke 24:36-49) - Those two disciples met up with the 10 (the original 12 minus Judas Iscariot and Thomas) to tell them about what happened. While they were meeting, Jesus appeared to them all. He demonstrated to them that he was not a ghost, but a real, flesh and blood living person in a resurrected body by eating with them. He also helped them understand how he fulfilled the Old Testament.
  • Jesus appears to Thomas (John 20:19-28) - We learn from the John account that when Jesus originally appeared to the disciples, Thomas (nicknamed "the twin") wasn't there. So when the other disciples were telling Thomas about everything that happened, Thomas didn't believe them. He said the famous words (John 20:25): "First I must see the nail marks in his hands. I must put my finger where the nails were. I must put my hand into his side. Only then will I believe what you say.” Then, a week later, Jesus appeared to them again, and this time Thomas was there. Jesus told Thomas to put his fingers on his wounds and believe. But Thomas didn't need to. Just seeing Jesus was enough. 
  • Jesus does a miracle at sea again (John 21:1-13) - Several of the disciples were together, and Peter decided to go fishing and the others went with him. They fished all night and hadn't caught anything. A man called out from the shore and asked them if they had caught any fish. They replied that it had been a tough night of fishing and they hadn't caught anything. He told them to cast their nets on the other side of the boat, and they miraculously caught a huge catch of fish. Peter must have had a flashback to when he was called (see the story in Luke 5:1-11), and he immediately recognized that it was Jesus. Then they went on the shore and Jesus had prepared them a meal of fresh grilled fish.

What You Will Need

Resource Sheet

Jesus Appears to His Disciples Coloring Sheet

This coloring sheet depicts Jesus appearing to his disciples as they were eating.

Lesson

1. Warm Up

get your kids talking and engaged

For younger students: If you could eat a meal with Jesus, what food would you want to eat with him? What kind of food do you think Jesus likes?

For older students: Have you ever been called a "doubting Thomas"? Do you know where that expression comes from?

Today, we're going to learn about some things that Jesus did after He raised from the dead.

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: Luke 24:36-43; John 20:24-29

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 were Cleopas and another disciple going when Jesus appeared to them on the road? (Emmaus)
  • Did they recognize Jesus at first? (no)
  • What did Jesus explain to them? (beginning in the Old Testament, he interpreted the Scriptures regarding the Messiah and his coming)
  • When did the disciples recognize it was Jesus? (at the dinner table that night)
  • What happened next? (Jesus left them immediately)
  • Who did the two disciples tell about this event? (the other disciples)
  • What happened while they were explaining this to the other disciples? (Jesus appeared to them all)
  • How did Jesus prove to them that he was raised from the dead and not a ghost? (he ate with them)
  • Which two of the 12 wasn't there when all this happened? (Thomas and Judas)
  • Did Thomas believe them - that Jesus appeared to them? (no)
  • What did he say he needed to see before he believed? (the wounds in Jesus' hands, feet, and side)
  • How long did Jesus wait to appear to Thomas? (a week)
  • What miracle did Jesus repeat for Peter and some of the other disciples? (he helped them catch a miraculous catch of fish after they had been fishing all night and didn't catch anything)

5. Faith Questions

help them apply the story to their lives and open up a conversation about faith and the gospel; close with prayer
  • In this story, we see that Jesus showed himself to many people after he was raised from the dead to prove to them that he was alive again.
  • Romans 10:9 says that if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. Have you confessed Jesus as your Lord and do you believe that God raised him from the dead?

6. Memory Verse

hide God's Word in their heart
When I'm afraid, I will trust in you. Psalm 56:3

Reinforcement Activities

Go Fish Card Game

Scripture He called out to them, “Friends, don’t you have any fish?” “No,” they answered. He said, “Throw your net on the right side of the boat. There you will find some fish.” When they did, they could not pull the net into the boat. There were too many fish in it. John 21:5-6

Supplies go fish cards for each group of students

  • Divide class into groups of 4 or 5.
  • Make enough copies of the Go Fish cards for each group.
  • How to play:
  • Deal 5-7 cards to each player.
  • The rest of the cards need to be placed in a pile for everyone to reach.
  • Player 1 asks another player (player 2) if they have a specific card.
  • If player 2 has the card, they must give it to player 1 and player 1 gets another turn.
  • If player 2 does not have the card, they say "go fish" and player 1 has to choose a card from the pile.
  • When all of the sets have been laid down, the game is over. The person with the most matches wins.

Hello, My Name Is...

Scripture As they talked about those things, Jesus himself came up and walked along with them. 16 But God kept them from recognizing him. Luke 24:15

  • One student is chosen to be the guesser.
  • The guesser moves away from the rest of the group and turns his back.
  • A student is chosen to be it. The person who is it goes near the guesser and disguises his voice.
  • The guesser must guess who is speaking.

Believe It or Not

Scripture So they told him, “We have seen the Lord!” But he said to them, “First I must see the nail marks in his hands. I must put my finger where the nails were. I must put my hand into his side. Only then will I believe what you say.” John 20:25

Supplies trivia quesions

  • Read statments and ask students if they believe it or not.
  • Chameleons change color to match their surroundings? (No, they change based on their mood.)
  • Your tongue has a unique "fingerprint" (yes, like fingerprints, everyone's tongue print is different)
  • An ostrich's eye is bigger than its brain (yes)
  • Tigers have striped skin, not just striped fur (yes)
  • A dime has 75 ridges around the edge. (No, it has 118 ridges)
  • Almonds are a member of the peach family. (yes)
  • Rubber bands last longer when kept hot. (No, they last longer when refrigerated.)
  • A sneeze travels over 100 miles per hour. (yes)
  • The first animal sent up to outer space was a monkey. (No, it was a dog)

Making Fishing Nets

Scripture He said, “Throw your net on the right side of the boat. There you will find some fish.” When they did, they could not pull the net into the boat. There were too many fish in it. John 21:6

Supplies sticks, string, items to test the strength

  • Allow students to make fishing nets from sticks and string.
  • Allow them to use their imaginations to create the nets.
  • Test the strength of each net, when complete, by adding books, shoes, etc to see how many each can hold.

Hide and Seek Disciples

Scripture On the evening of that first day of the week, the disciples were together. They had locked the doors because they were afraid of the Jews. Jesus came in and stood among them. He said, “May peace be with you!” John 20:19

Supplies 11 copies of person cutout (1 for each of the 11 disciples)

  • The disciples were hiding in the upper room out of fear of what had happened to Jesus.
  • Write the names of the 11 disciples on a person cutout and then hide pictures of them around the room.
    • Simon Peter
    • Andrew
    • James
    • John
    • Philip
    • Bartholomew
    • Matthew
    • Thomas
    • James
    • Thaddaeus
    • Simon the Zealot
  • Allow the students to find them.
  • Ask them which disciple couldn't be found. (Judas)

Fish in a Net Craft

Heads up! cut small notches into the edges of the plates before class (all the way around the plate)

Scripture He said, “Throw your net on the right side of the boat. There you will find some fish.” When they did, they could not pull the net into the boat. There were too many fish in it. John 21;6

Supplies styrofoam plates, construction paper, string, blue paint or blue crayons or small pieces of blue tissue paper

  • Paint styrofoam plates at the beginning of class. Make sure paint is thin, so it dries quickly...or use crayons. (washable markers will rub off)...or glue pieces of blue tissue paper.
  • You can make fish shapes by cutting out circles and triangles or tracing a simple fish shape.
  • Place fish onto paper plate.
  • Tape string to the edge of the paper plate.
  • Have students wrap string all the way around the plate, using notches to hold in place to create a net over the fish.

Fish for Breakfast

Heads up! Be aware of fish allergies! Do not do use real fish proucts if there are students in your class with an allergy to fish.

Scripture Jesus said to them, “Come and have breakfast.” John 21:12

Supplies various types of fish: tuna, sardines, canned salmon, fish sticks, gold fish, swedish fish, bread

  • Serve fish and bread for breakfast!
  • Encourage the students to try some of the "fishier"options. They are more likely to remember the lesson if the activity is memorable.