Opening Song: The Apostles' Creed
Big Idea: King Jesus is here!
Ask: Which part of the Apostles' Creed song talks about something to do with Christmas?
Ask: What is Christmas about?
Say: It’s about God coming to be with us and be our King!
Ask: Do you know who this King is? What is His name? (Jesus)
Ask: Who is Jesus? Why is He so important?
Say: Jesus is God. But He is also a human like you and me. He decided to leave Heaven and come into this world to show us how to live the way God wants us to live: God wants us to love (ASL sign for "love") Him (point at the ceiling) and other people (point at the kids). (Have the kids do that with you a few times.)
Say: But there is another reason why Jesus came: He came as a human so he could die and defeat death for us by rising again from the dead — that is what we celebrate on Easter. Christmas has a lot to do with Easter and that's why they are the two most important holidays.
Say: So let's look again at what we are celebrating tonight, on Christmas Eve: the story of how Jesus was born:
Lesson Video — Christmas
Say: We also want to share with you tonight why we are doing certain things on Christmas: like lots of lights and stars, a Christmas tree, and giving gifts.
Say: We give each other gifts, because God gave us a gift, too — He gave us Jesus. God loves us so much that He gave us a gift, so that's why we give gifts to those we love, too!
Lights and stars
Ask: Any idea what all the lights and stars could be about?
Say: Remember the Christmas story? There was a star in it that helped people find Jesus. There were lots of other stars in the sky, too, of course, so all the lights we use during Christmas time remind us of the stars that night.
Ask: Who has a Christmas tree at home?
Ask: Does it have lights on it?
Ask: Now that we already just talked about lights and stars, what do you think the lights on a Christmas tree might be about?
Say: It's the stars of the night of Jesus' birth again!
Ask: Does anyone know what kind of tree a Christmas tree usually is?
Say: A long long time ago, people would bring pine trees into their homes during winter because pine trees stay green while all the other plants died.
Later, around the time of Martin Luther, people in Germany would put on plays about Creation and the Birth of Jesus. In the play, they would have a pine tree to represent the tree in the Garden of Eden. It was called a "Paradise Tree."
Not long after that, Lutherans in Germany began to put Paradise Trees in their homes on Christmas Eve, which was also the day they celebrated God making Adam and Eve. They also decided to put candles on the Paradise Tree to remember that Christ Jesus is the light of the world.
And now we still put up pine trees in our homes with lights on them, but we call them a ... (have the kids say "Christmas Tree!")
Superbook — The First Christmas
Song 1 (Little Lord Jesus)
1. One simple manger,
Two parents close by
Three little lambs making soft, searching cries,
Four weary feet on the donkey who brays,
As one tiny baby dreams deep in the hay.
Jesus! Jesus! Little Lord Jesus,
Bright as the star in the sky!
Jesus! Jesus! Little Lord Jesus,
Glory to God on High!
2. One choir of angels,
Two shepherd's bent knees,
Three royal gifts brought with love from the east,
Four gentle hands soothe the baby who stirs,
The one true redeemer for all of the earth.
3. One crown of thorns,
Two nails in each hand,
Three days 'til Jesus will rise once again.
For neither death nor the grave could contain.
The wonderful king who forever would reign.