The Pool of Bethesda was a special pool that was said to have healing powers. People would come from all over to try and be healed. In John 5:1-15, Jesus healed a man who had been sick for a long time. The man had been lying by the pool for years. When Jesus saw the man, He had compassion on him and healed him. This passage teaches us that Jesus is compassionate and powerful.

Some keys point we will learn are:

  • We should obey Jesus
  • Jesus is powerful.
  • It is more important to obey God than man.

Lesson Guide – The Pool of Bethesda

Talk to your child about a time that they were sick. How did they feel when they were sick and after they got well? Explain that this man had been very sick for many, many years. At this pool, an angel would sometimes touch the water and whomever stepped in first would be healed.

Lay out a blanket on the floor. This will be the “pool.” Now put your child on the other side of the room. You can give them ankle weights or burrito-wrap them in a blanket. You stand right by the “pool.” Now shout, “The water is moving.” Step immediately into the water and say, “I’ve been healed.” You may do this game a few times. 

Now ask the child how the game made them feel. Were they frustrated because they couldn’t move fast, and you could? Talk about how this man had been there [x] times more than they have been alive. Every time the angel came, the other people were much faster than the man.

Jesus commanded the man to pick up his bed and walk. The man did so. What are the commands that Jesus has given us to follow? Are some commands from Jesus easier than others?

Jesus is powerful. He was able to tell the man to walk and he was able to walk. Name some other times that Jesus showed His power (Try to come up with miracles such as the calming of the sea, raising Jarius’s daughter, etc). You may need to give the child some hints, but point out how powerful Jesus is.

Talk about how it is more important to obey God than man. Mention times that we must choose God over man. Jesus commanded us to love others, but the religious leaders were more worried about rules than loving other people. 

Share how it is important to keep rules and respect those in authority over us. Talk to children about the Sabbath, and how God made it a special day. God wants us to keep the Sabbath, but the religious leaders added extra rules and made obey them, more important than obey God. Play a game by thinking of a good rule, and then adding extra rules to it until it become unfair.

You may choose to create a game with your child. Write out a series of events such as “going to a ball game,” “helping a widow weed her garden,” or “going to church.” Mix up the variety of events and have the child draw two. Now, discuss which event is more important to do. Some of these will be easy such as church is more important than a ballgame, but you may discuss further whether church is more important than taking someone who is very sick to the hospital. Talk about why your child made the choice they did and use verses to either solidify their opinion or point out how they may be wrong.

Pray and ask God to help you and your child to always obey Him.

The Pool of Bethesda – Bible story for kids

Games and activities

Paddling pool fun

CAUTION: Never leave a child unsupervised around water.

A paddling pool is a great way to keep your kids entertained during the summer months. There are a huge range of activities that you can do with a paddling pool, from simple games to more complex water play. Here are some great ideas for paddling pool activities for kids:

– Water balloon relay:  Give each child a water balloon and have them race to the pool.

– Spray painting: Get some washable paint and let the kids go wild spraying the sides of the pool.

– Treasure hunt: Hide some sinkable small toys around the pool and let the kids go on a treasure hunt.

Tabletop bubbles

Bubble learning is a great way for kids to learn. Tabletop bubbles are easy to make and can provide hours of fun. Plus, they are a great way to teach kids about science. All you need is a small container, some dish soap, water and a straw. Simply mix together the soap and water, and voila – you’ve got yourself a DIY bubble solution! Once you’ve got your solution, let your kids go wild blowing bubbles on the table

Race to the pool

Set up an area to represent a pool. You could use a paddling pool or a ball pit.

Have the child(ren) walk around the room while the music is playing. When the music stops, they should rush to get into the pool as quickly as possible.


Free Bible Coloring Pages – The Pool of Bethesda

The Pool of Bethesda Craft for kids

The Pool of Bethesda Craft for kids - Free printable template for church, home or Sunday school

What you need:

  • Template page (on card for best results),
  • Colouring equipment,
  • Scissors,
  • Split-pin.

What to do:

  1. Colour the template page.
  2. Cut out the template.
  3. Attach legs behind body with a split pin.

Download the lesson for FREE


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