With a divided kingdom and a broken people, God began to send prophets to His people. The prophets predicted both the present and the future, and many pointed to the coming Messiah. Isaiah foretold God’s global plan long before Christ came. It would be too small a thing for Christ to come only for the lost sheep of Israel. He would also be a light to the Gentiles. After Jesus’ birth, Simeon referenced this verse when he declared that Jesus was a “light to the Gentiles” (Luke 2:32). Paul also used this verse as justification for his work among the Gentiles in Acts 13:47 when he said, “Therefore we turn to the Gentiles, to preach the gospel to them, because so has the Lord commanded us, saying, ‘I have sent you to be a light to the Gentiles.’” As God sent Jesus into the world to be a light to all people, so is He sending us! (John 20:21)
Bible: Read Isaiah 49:6 together with your family.
Teaching Time: 15 minutes
Materials: flashlight, world map
Go outside with your family at night with a flashlight and a world map. Find Israel on the map (just to the east of Egypt). Shine the flashlight on Israel. Hold the flashlight close to the map so that the light is focused on Israel. Isaiah 49:6 says “It would be too small a thing for Christ to come only for the lost sheep of Israel.” Move the light further from the map so the light shines on the whole map. The verse continues and says “He would also be a light to the Gentiles.” Each child may have a turn shining the light on Israel and then on the whole world as they repeat the verse.
- What are some characteristics of light? Compare the light to the darkness. How is Jesus like the light? How are we like the light?
- Read Matthew 5:14-16. Why does God want us to be a light to others?
Pray that those who are in darkness would see the light of life in Jesus.