Jan 15, 2013

Intergenerational Talk: Temptations of Christ

Here’s an intergenerational conversation about Luke 4:1-13 (Matthew 4:1-11, Mark 1:12-13) – the temptations of Christ after his baptism.  It was written by Moira Laidlaw.


Children’s Feature: Temptations of Christ

(Luke 4:1-13, Matthew 4:1-11, Mark 1:12-13)


Give three people placards to wear which identify them as one of the following:


            Evil thoughts


Find the following props:

            Hamburger-shaped stone

            Crown and money

            Picture of the Temple or perhaps a church with a large spire


Leader:  In Jesus’ time, it was a regular thing to go without food for a few days or even weeks.  This was to help people concentrate more on what God wanted them to do with their lives because it took away the hassle of having to think about what to buy or prepare to eat and so gave extra time for prayer and thinking abut God.  Some people still do that today.  I don’t think I’d be very good at going without food for any length of time – I have difficulty just staying on a diet - I find temptations everywhere! Our story from the Bible today about Jesus, tells us how he did not eat for many, many days.   This happened after he had heard the voice at his baptism claiming him as God’s beloved Son and he was filled with the power of the Holy Spirit. Maybe he played these events over and over again in his mind like a movie, wondering what God had in mind for him to do next.  

Narr:    After Jesus had been walking through wild, desert country

            and  hadn’t eaten for a week or so, he felt very hungry....

Evil thoughts (holding out the stone):

            See this stone -- looks just like a hamburger doesn’t it?

            Why don’t you use your power to turn it into one—
            you wouldn’t be hungry then.

Jesus:  No - I refuse to use God’s power in that way. 

            I would only be serving myself , and God’s power is for all people. 


Narr:    As Jesus walked a bit further,

            perhaps thinking about this power he possessed...

Evil thoughts (holding out crown and money):

            Just think how wealthy  and powerful you could be.

            You could live in luxury and rule the whole world.

Jesus:  No—God is the only one who is to be worshipped. 

            God’s power is for building others up, not to build me up.

Narr:    And then, as Jesus walked along in prayer,

            perhaps he pictured the temple in Jerusalem....


Evil thoughts (holding up a picture of the temple):

            You could jump off the very highest point of the temple

            and wait for the angels to catch you.
            They would, wouldn’t they??

Jesus:  God’s  power is not to be used in sensational, high-powered acts.
            God’s power will be found enabling poor and powerless people

            to live lives of worth and dignity.  

Evil thoughts slinks away. 

Jesus stands with head bowed and hands together in attitude of prayer.

Narrator sits down.

Leader:   Jesus understood these temptations as evil—tempting him to use his power in ways which would bring glory to himself rather than  to God.  He was able to resist temptation because he was happy to let God be in control at all times.  He must have prayed for God’s strength to keep him strong.  There are times in our lives when we will be tempted to do other than what God wants us to do.  If we follow Jesus’ example and believe that his power and strength are in us, we will be able to resist doing wrong even as Jesus did. 


~ written by Moira Laidlaw, and posted on Liturgies Online. http://www.liturgiesonline.com.au/