Key Passage: 1 Kings 8:61 “Let your heart be completely devoted to the Lord our God.”

Big Picture Question: What did King Solomon build? King Solomon built a temple for God.

Christ Connection: God is holy. Only the priests could go into God’s special place in the temple, and they had to follow special rules because they were sinful. Jesus took away our sing when He died on the cross. When we know and love Jesus, we talk to God on our own.

Dear Parents,
This week’s story is about the fulfillment of David’s desire to build a permanent place for the ark to reside. David’s son Solomon built the temple to house the ark and the other important elements of the tabernacle, the temporary moveable house of worship for the Israelites. God had given Solomon wisdom and in the fourth year of his reign he began building the temple. Workers cut logs and stones and began to build the temple, a process that lasted seven years until it was finally completed. God promised Solomon that He, God, would inhabit the building and never abandon the people of Israel.

With the temple complete, Solomon and the Israelite leaders moved the ark of the covenant and the other holy items from Mt. Zion into the temple. Solomon sacrificed offerings before God. Once the items were placed inside the temple and the people left, a thick cloud came down on the temple and the place was filled with God’s glory!

Solomon prayed a prayer of praise and thanksgiving to God. The people witnessed Solomon’s prayer and were encouraged by his words. In the temple, only the priests could approach the glory of God. Jesus changed that situation when He came to earth. When Jesus died on the cross, the curtain in the temple was ripped, giving people direct access to God when they trust Jesus as Lord and Savior.

Family Activity: Many details of the temple in Jerusalem reminded God’s people of His awesome power, beauty, and desire to be among them. In the ark of the covenant were items showing God’s care for His people. Think together of ways God cares for your family, through both basic necessities and blessings. Take pictures, make photocopies of significant documents, and place souvenirs of special family events in a special family box to help you recall God’s goodness.

Go further: Build a house of cards, and then knock it down. Talk to your kids about Jesus’ promise to destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days (John 2:19-22). Rebuild the house of cards and explain what Jesus meant.

Key Passage: Luke 2:10-11 But the angel said to them, “Don’t be afraid, for look, I proclaim to you good news of great joy that will be for all the people: Today a Savior, who is Messiah the Lord, was born for you in the city of David.”

Big Picture Question: Why did the wise men visit Jesus? The wise men came to worship Jesus.

Christ Connection: The wise men came to worship Jesus as King. Jesus is the King who will rule forever, as God promised to King David in 2 Samuel 7. Jesus is the true King who is worthy of all our worship.

Dear Parents,

This week your kids heard a story from the Bible about wise men who travelled from a distant land in order to find the King who had been born. Have you ever found it interesting that God revealed to the wise men—pagan priests and astrologers—that the Savior had been born? Jesus was King, but not in the way these men likely thought.

As you have dinner, talk about the wise men and the sign they saw which pointed to Jesus. Talk about signs you see today, and how you can see them pointing to Jesus. Share with your family one thing you remember God showed you as a sign.

The wise men brought gifts to worship Jesus. We too need to give all of our worship to Jesus Christ. God sent Jesus to earth to be the Savior of all people, and He deserves the praise we give Him.

Family Activity: Walk or drive to a family favorite location (ice cream shop, playground, backyard). As you travel review the journey of the wise men. How do you think the wise men felt to finally reach Jesus? Name ways your family can worship Jesus.

Key Passage: Luke 2:10-11 But the angel said to them, “Don’t be afraid, for look, I proclaim to you good news of great joy that will be for all the people: Today a Savior, who is Messiah the Lord, was born for you in the city of David.”

Big Picture Question: Where was Jesus born? Jesus was born in Bethlehem as God promised.

Christ Connection: The birth of Jesus was good news! Jesus was not an ordinary baby. He was God’s Son, sent to earth from heaven. Jesus came into the world to save people from their sins and to be their King.

Dear Parents,

Merry Christmas to you! Thank you for entrusting your child to us throughout this year. We celebrate with you and your family the joy of Jesus’ birth. This week’s story in The Gospel Project for Kids was all about Jesus’ birth. When God sent Jesus to earth, He was born of a virgin, fulfilling Isaiah’s prophecy.

As you celebrate, recount for your kids the joyous news the shepherds shared. Help your kids understand the importance of sharing that wonderful news with others. Talk about the humble beginnings of our Savior, Jesus. Pray with your family, thanking God for sending His Son, Jesus, to be the Savior of the world.

Family Activity: Share with your kid(s) how you announced his or her birth to the world. Who was waiting in the waiting room? Who was the first person you called? Who was the first person to visit? Show any pictures or videos you might have of that special day. Make a list of the differences between that special day and the birth of Jesus.

Key Passage: Luke 2:10-11 But the angel said to them, “Don’t be afraid, for look, I proclaim to you good news of great joy that will be for all the people: Today a Savior, who is Messiah the Lord, was born for you in the city of David.”

Big Picture Question: What part did Mary and Joseph have in God’s plan? God chose Mary and Joseph to be the earthly parents of Jesus.

Christ Connection: “Therefore, the Lord Himself will give you a sign: The virgin will conceive, have a son, and name him Immanuel” (Isaiah 7:14). The baby Jesus fulfilled Isaiah’s prophecy, as well as other prophecies of the coming Savior throughout the Old Testament. Through His life, death, and resurrection, Jesus fulfilled God’s plan of redemption that God planned from the beginning of the world.

Dear Parents,
Thank you for continuing this journey of The Gospel Project for Kids. We’d like to take a break from the chronological study of the Bible and invite boys and girls into the stories of Christmas. Today’s story relates a time when angels came to visit Mary and Joseph. The angel Gabriel came to Mary and startled her with his news. Mary felt unworthy, but she humbly submitted to God’s will for her life.

Joseph learned of Mary’s pregnancy and decided to divorce her quietly, but an angel visited Joseph and encouraged him to follow God’s plan and let the marriage take place as planned. God’s plan was far greater than Joseph’s plan.

What were Mary and Joseph’s roles in God’s plan? God had chosen Mary and Joseph to be the earthly parents of Jesus. The baby Jesus fulfilled the prophecies about the Messiah in Isaiah 7:14. This was one of many Old Testament prophecies which Jesus fulfilled.

Family Activity: Invite grandparents or another family member to come share with your kid(s) about a time in their lives when they followed God’s plan. Were they scared? Excited? Nervous? Share with your kids that God ahs a plan for each of them.