Children need to be taught who God is and how He loves them.
- God is holy. He is perfect. We are not perfect.
- God is just. He is always fair. We are not just in all our decisions.
- God is omnipotent. He knows all there is to know. We are not all-knowing.
- God is sovereign. He is in control. We are not in control.
- God is love. He desires a relationship with us; that's why He sent His Son. We do not love others perfectly.
- Will they fully understand? No. But children do not need to fully comprehend God's character to be able to believe. They need to understand that He is the Creator, unlike man, and that we are accountable to Him for our lives.
Children need to be taught about sin.
We don’t talk enough today about sin and the penalty that accompanies it—hell. These are not popular concepts in our culture of tolerance. Hell isn't in style today because it represents a couple of things that are repugnant to many people. It represents accountability to someone in authority—and we want to avoid authority.It also represents absolute eternal judgment. Many people have a difficult time believing in everlasting punishment because they prefer to think of God only as a loving father.
God is loving, but He is not tolerant. He is holy. His justice calls for an atonement (a payment, a penalty) for man's sins. Our children must have some understanding that their sins can keep them out of heaven. Their sins must be paid for. And that is what Jesus Christ did for us on the cross.
Children need to be taught that they can receive God's forgiveness through faith in Jesus Christ.
Children need to agree with God that they are sinners and cannot reach Him by their own efforts, turn to Him in faith, and trust Jesus Christ to be their Savior and Lord (Ephesians 2:8-9).
Jesus died for us; He was the perfect sacrifice paying the penalty for our sin.
In the crucifixion, God shows that far from abandoning his creation and avoiding its brokenness, he embraces his creation and makes the ultimate sacrifice to redeem it. Christian author, Dorothy Sayers wrote, “God did not abolish the fact of evil: He transformed it. He did not stop the crucifixion: He rose from the dead.” This is ever God’s way, to choose the difficult and unexpected to demonstrate both his love and justice. His justice is seen in condemning the sin and cruelty of humanity. His love is seen in taking that punishment upon himself through the gift of his Son.
The resurrection assures us that death has indeed been defeated and our sins forgiven. It was for this reason the Apostle Paul wrote to the church atCorinth, “If there is no resurrection from the dead, then not even Christ has been raised. And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith.”
It is this remarkable love of God in Christ that we celebrate on Easter Sunday, A love that, in the words of Zechariah the priest, “rescues us and frees us from fear, so that we might worship God with a holy worship, in his holy presence our whole life long.”