We are on our final week of the Christmas lesson series. (If you missed any of the past Christmas lessons click here). This week, we will look at the contrast between King Herod and the Wise Men. Our Bible text is found in Matthew 2:1-12.
- Wise men seek Jesus – Seeking Jesus is always the wise thing to do.
- No one is too far away from God.
- God wants us to be humble.
The Wise Men (Magi) – Lesson Guide
There are some helpful animated videos and song ideas included in a youtube playlist to go along with this lesson.
Begin by asking the child to talk about what they have learned so far in the Christmas lessons. You may refer to the nativity set you have been assembling to help remind the child of the different lessons you have studied. Point out that you only have one more addition to add before the set is complete.
Ask the child if they remember if the shepherds were rich or royal. They were not, but the Wise Men who came to seek Jesus were. Point out that all men should seek Jesus, whether they are rich and royal or poor and simple. You may create a game by listing or drawing (or borrowing from an existing game) some professions and attitudes. Then have the child draw one of each — for instance, a happy baker or an angry fisherman. You may either play the game like charades or act for fun (depending on your child’s age). While you go through the different combinations, point out that they all need Jesus in their hearts.
Point out that the Wise Men were wise. Talk about how the Wise Men studied the stars. If possible, take your child outside to look at the stars. Point out constellations. You may also choose to look at a book about stars. Marvel at how God calls every star by their name. Explain that the Bible says the fear of God is the beginning of wisdom. Think about how the Wise Men were rich and considered very smart, but they left their homes to travel and see Jesus. Point out that they lived very far away from where Jesus was born. Remind the child that no one is too far from God because God is everywhere. Point out that all can come to Jesus for salvation.
After talking about the Wise Men, talk about Herod. Point out that he was also king. He was rich and had great possessions, just like the Wise Men. But, Herod chose not to go and see Jesus. He was proud and loved his power more than he wanted to know God. He was willing to do bad things to Jesus and many other people to keep his power.
Herod and the Wise Men were the opposite of each other. Think about other things that are opposites. Offer the child a lemon. Ask them to tell you what would be the opposite. Offer them a pillow, and ask them to identify something that is the opposite. You can play a game by taking turns and offering each other an item for which to find the opposite. Point out that good is the opposite of evil. Right is the opposite of wrong. You may also play the game by laying out a selection of items on the table and asking the child to place them in pairs with their opposite.
Talk about how the Wise Men chose to bring gifts to offer Jesus. Ask the child what gift they would take to a newborn king. Explain that Jesus wants a gift from us – our hearts.
Place the Wise Men into the nativity set you have been constructing. Remind the child that old or young, rich or poor, wise or simple, all should bow before Jesus.
Pray and thank Jesus for coming into the world. Ask Him to help you be like the Wise Men and seek Him.
Free Printable Bible Story
Games and Activities
Pass the Parcel
This is a classic party game in the UK. Wrap a gift with layers of paper. Between each layer you can place a small sweet / candy. Sit in a circle with one person holding the parcel. Play some music and pass the parcel around until the music stops. Each time the music stops, the person holding the parcel removes one layer and wins a sweet. The game continues until there are no more layers remaining.
Follow the Star Treasure Hunt
Here is a fun treasure hunt game to play inside or outside. The idea is similar to that of a paper trail except that we will follow the stars. Print or cut out star shapes and hide them in different places. For younger children you can simply have them follow the trail. For old kids, you can hide one star in each location with clues to where to find the next star.
If you have a clear evening, go outside and look at the stars with your children. If your using the lesson during the day, show a video clip or photos of stars in a book. Try to imagine shapes and picture you can see by connecting the stars.
Christmas Coloring pages – The Wise Men
More coloring pages included in lesson pdf
Craft – 3D star – Includes free template
What you need:
- Template printed onto card
- Pencils, crayons or paint
- Optional: glue and glitter
- Optional: string
What to do:
- Cut out the star shapes from the template. (leave the dotted line until later).
- Decorated both sides of each star. Optional use glitter and allow to dry.
- Cut down the dotted line to the middle of each star. Insert stars together and tape in place.
- Optional: Add some string to hang the star.
Download the lesson