Epiphany Sunday - Fit for a King
January 5: Fit For a King – Epiphany Sunday
Matthew 2:1-12 - God’s light always leads us to Christ.
Note to the Teacher
This lesson invites youth to think about gifts and God’s light. The magi gave gifts that were meaningful to the Christ Child and we give gifts that are meaningful to people in our lives. God's light led the magi to Jesus just as God’s light continues to lead us to Christ today and lead us to being light for others in the world.
Time Description of Activity
10 Min. 1. Ice Breaker - Giving Gifts
As this may be the first time your group has gathered back together since Christmas, conversation may be centered around what gifts each person received this year. For your icebreaker, do not ask any youth what gifts they received this year, but take turns inviting each person to share something they gave.
What gifts did they give to their family and or friends?
Did they give money to a special offering or mission project of the church?
Ask each person to share why they gave the gifts they did. The magi gave valuable gifts to the infant Jesus, how did their gifts echo those given to Jesus?
5 Min. 2. Read scripture
Our scripture passage is the story of the magi following the star, light in the darkness, to find the newborn Christ child, to bring him honor, and to present him with gifts. On their way they encounter King Herod who becomes threatened by Jesus’ birth.
Read Matthew 2:1-12
15 Min. 3. Discussion
- Why do you think King Herod was troubled when he heard the magi were looking for Jesus? (the newborn king of the Jews)
- The magi followed a star, a light shining in the darkness, that led them to the Christ child. How does God’s light lead us today? Where does it lead us?
- The magi traveled in search of Jesus to Jerusalem which was considered the center of power. What significance do you think that has?
- Through dreams God spoke to the magi and led them where to go and where not to go. Do you think God still speaks to us through dreams today? How have you experienced God speaking to you?
20 Min. 4. Activity
Purchase a pack or two of glow in the dark stars. Depending on how many youth you have, give out one or multiple stars to each person. Invite them to write a place in their lives or in the world they are praying for God’s light to shine. After everyone has written down, invite the students to share what they have written. Then, tell the students you are going to place them on the ceiling or walls of the youth room.*
As they place the stars, invite them to think theologically about how they chose to place them on the walls. What significance does it mean to place them in random places throughout the whole room? What significance does it mean to place them together to create one symbol? There is no right way to do it, but it can help encourage them to think deeper about this.
*You might need to make sure that the pastor and/or trustees is OK with this before you place them on the walls or ceiling. If they are not OK with it, then invite youth to take them home and place them on their walls as a reminder of God’s light in their lives or use butcher paper or something else that is temporary that you can hang on the hall, but that won’t be permanently stay on the wall.
Needed Supplies: Glow in the dark stars, sharpies or markers