The Baptism of Jesus 2010 January

Select a CD about moving and growing and learning, I think in particular of OUTOFTHEARK music :Songs for EVERY assembly track 4 Living and learning.

Ask the children to sing it, standing up sensibly. Keep stopping the music on PAUSE at intervals. The children must freeze while you ask the following children to sit down each time the music stops:-

Ø Those in brownies, scouts, boys brigade

Ø Those in no clubs at all

Ø Those in sports clubs, i.e. running, athletics, kick boxing, judo etc

Ø Those in dance clubs, yoga, gymnastics

Ø Those in football, netball, basketball clubs, Those with season tickets to a local Football club

Ø Those who have a school badge

Talk about INITIATION and BELONGING: jumping over a chair (brownies) trials (football etc) uniforms, (leotards, football strips) certificates, trophies, mottos promises etc.

BAPTISM is very like this

Have a bucket of white paper cut into small pieces, and tell the story of how a new fire fighter was initiated into the fire service on his first day. On hearing the alarm call, he quickly responded and slid down the pole at top speed.

At the bottom of the pole he found all the other fire fighters standing there in a circle grinning at him, each with a bucket of water, and they all threw their water at him like this! (throw the bucket of the shredded paper at the children at this point, and they will think it is water!)

‘What do you think you are doing ?’ he asked (or words to that effect!*)

He knew there and then that he was now part of a team.

He could now call himself a real firefighter and work together with a team saving others.

Ø In Baptism we choose to believe in God and model our lives on the life of His son Jesus.

Ø Baptism means the start of a new journey of learning about Jesus

Ø In Baptism we say goodbye to the old life and hello to the new life.

Ø Baptism means we now are Christians and belong in Jesus' club, as part of a team with others

The Baptism of Jesus + QUIZ

There was once a man who lived in the desert long ago. He lived alone, he thought a lot about God, and about the King, God’s Son, who would one day come to save the people from all their troubles. People came to hear his words by the River Jordan. He was known to some as ‘the Baptist. What was his first name? (You may have to read the answers through first for little ones who can’t read very well.)

Put your hands up if you think it was...

a) Charles the Baptist b) Andrew the Baptist c) John the Baptist

John the Baptist feared no-one, he lived alone, his hair was wild and long and he wore the strangest of clothing. What did he wear?

Put your hands up if you think he wore

a) rabbit fur b) dog’s hair c) camel’s hair

His eating habits were strange too.

Put your hands up if you think he lived on...

a) weetabix and milk b) locusts and honey c) bread and wine

Many people who came to hear John speak, realised a lot was wrong in their lives, and they were sorry. They wanted to know how to put things right with God.

John shouted out very important words to them and they understood what they had to do.

Put your hands up if you think the words were...

a) “RESPOND to me and do as you’re told!”

b) “REPEAT after me the word, Amen!”

c) “REPENT and be baptised!”

To REPENT means not only to stop doing wrong, but to make an immediate ‘about turn’ to walk in the way of God. He told them that they could be clean again and be washed in the waters of the river. Could we have some volunteers out here, there may be some of you who might be sorry for something you have done wrong in the past? You can come and pretend to be baptised in the river.

Then he told them of the King was about to arrive.

Put your hands up if you think he told them,

“I baptise you with . . a) Water b) wine c) milk

but the One who comes after me who will baptise you with . . .

a) wine b) the Holy Spirit and fire c) love

(Mime baptizing the people here.) The people told John what their sins were, (volunteers ‘pretend’ to whisper to storyteller) and they knelt down in the river, they went under the water to die to their old lives, and they came straight up out of the water clean and whole, to live a new life in God.

Then Jesus came and stood before him. He too had come to be baptised by John. But John immediately knelt before him, (storyteller kneels down here) He said “No I need to be baptised by YOU!”

Jesus replied, ‘Let it be so now; it is right for this to be done!”

The minute John baptised Jesus, he saw heaven open and the Holy Spirit of God come down upon Jesus in the shape of a bird. Put your hands up if you think it was a . . .

a) robin b) eagle c) dove

It was then that John heard the mighty voice of God from heaven.

Put your hand up if you think the voice said,

a) “This is my Son, whom I love, with him I am well pleased.”

b) “This is my servant, who will go out into the world and love my people.”

c) “This is my Son who will die one day, to show my love for my people.”

All of these sentences could have been spoken about Jesus the King, For he came to do all of these things.

This is the story of the Baptism of Jesus.