Choose any of these children's activities.
Prayer. “Dear Lord, please help our children to work together, helping one another in love, as they serve you and other people.”
Let an older child or teacher read from Acts chapter 10 or tell by memory about Cornelius, an officer who led Roman soldiers. This story tells how Peter and his co-workers from Joppa worked together to start the first church of Gentile believers in another city. After telling the story, ask these questions. [The answers appear after each question.]
· What kind of man was Cornelius? [See verse 2]
· Who were the team members that went with Peter to tell Cornelius about Jesus? [See verse 23]
· What did God teach to Peter through a dream, about Peter’s attitude toward Gentiles (non-Jews)? [See verse 28]
· Who was waiting with Cornelius to hear the gospel? [See verse 24]
· How soon did the Holy Spirit come upon Cornelius and his group? [See verse 44]
· How soon were they baptized? [See verse 48]
Dramatize the story of Peter and Cornelius, from Acts chapter 10.
· Arrange with the leader of the main congregational worship to have the children present this drama.
· You do not have to do all the parts of the drama.
· Use your time with the children to prepare the drama.
· Let the older children help the younger ones to prepare.
· Let the older children and adults play the parts of Narrator, Cornelius, Peter and Voice of God. Voice of God holds a folded bed sheet.
· Let the younger children play the parts of the Animals in Peter’s dream, Believers and two Soldiers. Soldiers carry long sticks that represent spears.
· Let the people who watch the drama be Cornelius’ friends.
Narrator: Tell the first part of the story, from Acts 10:1-8. Then say, “Cornelius is praying quietly. Hear what God says to him.”
Voice of God: “Cornelius, I have heard your prayers. I have seen the way you serve me. Go and find my servant, Peter.”
Narrator: Tell the second part of the story, from Acts 10:9-23. Then say, “Peter is praying quietly. Hear what God says to him.”
Voice of God: Hold up the bed sheet for all to see. Then, spread it out on the floor. Next say, “Peter, I know that you are hungry. Kill and eat these animals.”
Animals: Crawl around on the sheet, on hands and knees. Some makes loud pig’s noises. Others hiss like snakes.
Peter: “I cannot, Lord! It would break our Jewish customs to eat snakes and pigs!”
Voice of God: “Do not call anything unclean that I have made clean. Kill and eat.”
Peter and Voice of God: Peter says two more times that he cannot eat unclean meat, and each time the Voice of God answers, “I have made the animals clean. Kill and eat.”
Soldiers: Go to Peter and say, “Come to Cornelius’ house in the city of Caesarea.”
Peter: “God has told me to go with you, even though my culture forbids me to enter the house of a Gentile like Cornelius. Come inside and spend the night here.”
Believers: “Peter, since we, too, believe in Jesus, let us go with you to Caesarea and help you.”
Narrator: Tell the third part of the story from Acts 10:24-48. Then say, “All of you who are watching this drama now represent Cornelius’ family and friends. Listen to what Peter says.”
Peter: “Cornelius, you sent for us to tell you about Jesus. God showed me in a dream that He accepts you and your culture. Jesus died and rose from the dead to save you!”
Cornelius: “The Holy Spirit has convinced us that we are sinners and we need Jesus!”
Peter: Point at Cornelius’ friends (all the people who are watching the drama). Say, “Look, brothers, they have received the Holy Spirit! Let us baptize them now!”
Narrator or older child: Thank everyone who helped.
If the children dramatize this story for the adults, then let them also ask the adults the questions that are listed above.
Draw a Picture of a pig. (If your culture does not allow pigs, then do not draw this picture.) Let the children copy it and show their pictures to the adults at the next worship time. They can explain that this illustrates how God calls people of all cultures to be saved, no matter what they eat.
Ask the children to give other examples of things that make it hard to talk with people of other cultures or castes about Jesus. Let the children give examples.
Jews do not eat pork.
Older children might draw a Roman soldier, to remind them of how Cornelius, a good man, believed and helped his friends to hear about Jesus.
Memorize 2 Chronicles 16:9 (first part): “The eyes of the Lord move to and fro throughout the earth, that He may strongly support those whose heart is completely His.”
Poem. Let four children each recite one verse from Psalm 67:1, 2, 3 & 4.
Let the older children write poems, songs or a short drama, during the week, about how we can work together as a team and tell people of other cultures about Jesus.
Prayer: “Lord, we praise you for saving people of all nations from sin and death. Help us to love them and tell them about Jesus, even if they have different cultures from us.”