October 28, 2018 – John 7:1-53
Lesson Date: October 28, 2018
Focal Scripture Passage: John 7:1-53
AIM: To lead students to discover some of the many and varied opinions people held of Jesus during His earthly ministry, and to decide for themselves what they believe about Jesus’ identity.
Before class: Read the notes on John 7:1-53 found in the Sunday School Teacher Book. Get enough copies of the “Differing Opinions” worksheet for your anticipated attendance. Be sure to have some pens or pencils on hand for those who might need them. Enlist some of your students (who are comfortable reading aloud) to read the statements listed below.
INTRODUCTION (Create Learning Readiness): Call on the previously enlisted students to read the following statements:
- I believe Jesus was a great teacher sent from God.
- I believe Jesus was a big liar who led many people astray.
- I believe Jesus was sent by God as an example of how we ought to love everybody.
- I believe Jesus was a perfect man and a great teacher.
- I believe Jesus was a demon-possessed lunatic.
- I believe Jesus was a prophet sent from God.
Ask the students if they have ever heard any of these opinions expressed by people they know or in the public media. Tell them people in our country and around the world hold these and many other opinions about Jesus. Ask if they would share any other opinions they have heard.
Tell the class in today’s lesson they will discover many different opinions held by people during Jesus’ time here on earth. Tell them they will also have an opportunity to settle their own feelings about who Jesus really is.
HEART OF THE LESSON (Bible Study):
- Remind the students that we are studying the Gospel of John.
- Read John 20:31.
- Ask: “Why did John write this account of Jesus’ life?” (so his readers would believe that Jesus is the Son of God and have everlasting life by trusting in Him).
- Ask: “What was last week’s lesson about?” (some people followed Jesus for what they could get from Him while others followed Him sincerely).
- Ask if any volunteer would be willing to recite last week’s memory verse (John 6:37).
- Give everyone present a copy of the “Differing Opinions” worksheet and a pen or pencil if needed. A copy of the completed worksheet (including answers in italics) appears after the “Conclusion” step of this lesson plan.
- Explain that since our purpose today is to discover the different opinions people held of Jesus, we are going to go through this chapter a few verses at a time and fill in the worksheet to produce a completed list of opinions.
- Read John 7:1-53, stopping at each verse listed on the worksheet.
- After reading verse 2, explain that the Feast of Tabernacles was one of the Jews’ three annual pilgrim feasts.
- After verse 40, explain that “the Prophet” was an Old Testament name for the Messiah (see Deut. 18:15-20).
- After verse 52, explain that the prophets Jonah and Nahum actually came from the region of Galilee, but the Pharisees conveniently overlooked this fact.
PERSONAL APPLICATION: Review the chapter by reading the different opinions recorded on the completed worksheet. Tell the class these are only some of the many different opinions people have of Jesus. Many people today follow Him as their Savior and Lord, while others hate Him and wish they could completely erase Him from world history. Many “religious” people believe Jesus was a great teacher or even a prophet from God. Some just try to ignore Him.
Ask: “Do you see an opinion on the worksheet which matches your own?” Tell the students that opinions are like noses: virtually everyone has one. What matters most, however, are the facts.
Tell the class the Bible clearly teaches that Jesus is the virgin-born Son of God. He Himself is God. He lived a perfect, sinless life while on earth. He willingly suffered and died on the cross to pay the penalty for our sins. He arose from the dead, conquering death and sin, and ascended to heaven, where He sits at the Father’s right hand making intercession for believers.
Ask: “What is YOUR opinion of Jesus Christ? Is He YOUR Savior and Lord? If not, what is preventing you from placing your faith in Him right now?”
Ask everyone to bow their head and close their eyes. Briefly share the plan of salvation (you can use the verses printed on the back of the Sunday School Member Quarterly or the Roman Road or a Gospel tract). Urge any who desire Christ to be their Savior to repent of their sins and place their faith in Him right now. Ask everyone who knows Jesus to privately express praise and thanksgiving to Him. Voice a closing prayer.
CONCLUSION: Offer to speak privately after class to anyone who might have questions about salvation or want to receive Jesus Christ as their Savior.
What They Thought of Jesus
|1||Jews in Judea||Wanted to kill Him|
|3-5||Jesus’ Brothers||Sarcastic; didn’t believe in Him|
|7||The Evil World||Hates Him|
|12||The People||Some said He was a good man; others said He was a liar|
|15||The Jews||Marveled at His teaching|
|20||The People||Said He was demon-possessed – crazy|
|25||Jewish Religious Leaders||Wanted to kill Him|
|26||People of Jerusalem||Wondered if the rulers thought He really was the Christ|
|27||People of Jerusalem||Thought He was just a man from Galilee|
|30||The Jews||Wanted to arrest Him|
|31||Many of the People||Believed He was the Christ because of His miracles|
|32||Pharisees and Chief Priests||Wanted to arrest Him|
|40||Many of the People||Thought He was “the Prophet”|
|41||Others||Said He was the Christ|
|41||Some||Wondered if Christ could come out of Galilee|
|43||The People||Division – differing opinions|
|44||Some||Wanted to arrest Him|
|46||The Officers||Were amazed by what He said|
|47-48||The Pharisees||Said He was a liar; didn’t believe in Him|
|50-51||Nicodemus||Sought fair treatment for Jesus|
|52||The Pharisees||Thought no prophets came from Galilee|
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