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PYCLs: WAKE UP TO YOUR ROYALTY! (2)  BE MOVED & BAPTIZED IN SPIRIT! (3, 4)
CedarS Possible Younger Class Lessons for the Christian Science Quarterly Bible Lesson:

 “Spirit”
for August 7, 2022

by Kerry Jenkins, CS, House Springs, MO
kerry.helen.jenkins@gmail.com   (314) 406-0041


PYCL #1: CONTINUE SYNONYM PROJECT.

Continue to follow your ongoing project with synonym studies. It’s not too late to start either! We have been taking each synonym as we’ve studied them and working them into a longer term “project”. Some of the ideas new and old are: a synonym train of small boxes that have been made to look like train cars–each labeled with the synonym and filled with qualities or ideas about that synonym. A synonym mobile with 7 main hangers/sticks to represent each synonym (even though we don’t have a Bible lesson titled “Principle”), and qualities hanging from each branch. (Or some variation of this). A mug or mugs that we are decorating with synonym names and qualities, or ornaments for each synonym. We could do an ongoing mural of some kind, or a tree with leaves that each have qualities or synonyms on them…the ideas are pretty endless! Just have some fun.


PYCL #2: PRETEND TO WAKE UP ONE MORNING TO FIND YOU’RE A PRINCE OR PRINCESS!

Obviously, this would be for the very young. But you can find a version of this question for the older children. Discuss in terms of finding out that we are an heir or heiress to some kind of fortune. With the youngest crowd, have some paper crowns and maybe a few simple dress-up items to hand them as they pretend to wake up after a good sleep to find they are suddenly royalty. Then look together at the Responsive Reading at the end: Romans 8:14-17. This idea of being “heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ” is actually better than any material fortune that is available!

Consider the freedom that we are granted as we discover what it means to be an heir of God!! Make a chart together. What do you inherit when you become an heir of a king/queen/uber wealthy family? There are responsibilities, no? You would have to follow certain behaviors, marry certain people possibly, live a certain prescribed life? Maybe there are also some pretty awesome benefits, but maybe there is little privacy, or personal choice in daily life. I know that’s true for most royalty. On the other hand, an heir of God is all about freedom!

Divine royalty ia about our true spiritual heritage that includes health (not something that is included in human heritage!), joy (also not included), peace (…), intelligence (…), wisdom, energy, creativity, and much more, all in limitless and boundless ways. Here you may want to pause and check out the Golden Text which tells us: “It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing.” Flesh is another name for material and limited sense. Spirit is unlimited good. When we are turning to matter to keep us happy, healthy, wealthy and wise, we are going to meet a lot of road blocks. If matter worked that well we’d know that there is a prescribed material path that always works for every person!

Instead, this Bible lesson gives many examples of how we can look to a spiritual view of all things to bring these very freedoms of happiness, health, wealth, wisdom, into our lives. See what these examples include: creation by Spirit that is varied, beautiful, intelligent, peaceful. An ever-renewing and fresh sense of creation which wipes out the old, material sense of creation that can creep into our thought. (Noah). Healing on every level. An understanding of being born anew. A truer understanding of inclusivity and of body through spiritual baptism. A new sense of creation as utterly spiritual. These are just thumbnail sketches of each section, but they give us a sense of how understanding the inheritance we share with Christ from Spirit, can bless us with untold freedom.


PYCL #3: WHAT IS BAPTISM? DO WE HAVE BAPTISM IN CHRISTIAN SCIENCE?

This Bible lesson is full of baptism, and purifying, and “washing clean” images. First, what is baptism? Explain the traditional version, and then discuss how we think of it in Christian Science.

In Christian Science we are all about action rather than ritual, at least ideally. So, we can share some ideas about what it means to purify ourselves, or to have a new, fresh view of man or God. What actions do we need to constantly be taking? There are four great Bible stories that we can use this week to illustrate ideas about baptism. The first included is the story of Noah’s ark. This might not seem like a baptism story, but if we look at what it symbolizes it certainly is both a baptism and a story of the newness of creation, the washing away of error.

Read or tell the Noah story together. (citations B6- B9, Genesis 6:9-Genesis 9:1)
Would God really punish all of humanity and all of the kingdom of animals in this way? Might not this story be a parable of preservation and purity of thought?
Spirit here moves or breathes on the waters much the way Spirit does this in the Genesis 1 creation from our first section this week. We can talk about the way that true creation, variety, abundance, provision, is lifted above the waters of mortal mind, above the destructive seeming forces of error. There is symbolic completeness in this fresh creation story, as well as a peaceable sense when you consider all the animals together in such close quarters.

Our next story of purification is from Matt. 12:22-28 (cit. B13) and Mark 1:40-42 (cit. B12). Here we have a leper being cleansed through Christ healing and then Pharisees accusing Jesus of doing all the remarkable healing not through God’s power, but through “Beelzebub” or the devil.  Jesus makes it clear that nothing good or fresh can come from that which is impure and evil.

The goodness of Spirit is natural, like breathing the air around us! Error and the seeming actions of error, are unnatural, and they cannot produce good. Here you could illustrate this idea with two small pitchers, or glasses, of water. One would be full of clean, clear water, the other would have water with some mud in it.
Can the muddy water ever be pure in the way that the clear water from the tap is?
Even if we filtered it, there would be impurities! This is similar to what Jesus was sharing with the Pharisees who accused him of healing through the devil. Only good can come from God/Spirit, only bad from error.

The next story is of Nicodemus, John 3:1-7 (cit. B16). With this visit Jesus explains the need to be “born again” of Spirit. Nicodemus misunderstands because he has such a materialistic view of the universe. He wants to know how we can climb back into our mother’s womb and be reborn! This should make the children giggle.

Jesus, of course, is not speaking literally at all, but explaining the need for Nicodemus (and us) to understand the nature of Spirit’s creation, which includes a purified, spiritual view of man. This spiritual view brings healing even to the body: “Consciousness constructs a better body when faith in matter has been conquered. Correct material belief by spiritual understanding, and Spirit will form you anew.”  (cit. S19/425:23-26)

This story is followed by the story of the Ethiopian eunuch who was travelling back to his homeland after going all the way to Jerusalem to worship there! As a non-Jew and a eunuch, he would not have been even allowed entry into the temple proper, but would have had to stay in the outer portion of that temple. But his desire for understanding was such that he made this journey.

Share this story in Acts 8:28-39, (cit. B19) and how Philip explained the Scriptures and even baptized this fervent, spiritually-minded man.
How did this man show his purity and fresh mindset?
What made him especially ready to see how the Christ spirit works in man?
What view did Philip have that was unusual for a person in his day?
Was Philip’s view one of freshness and purity, or of ritual and tradition?
This story is a good illustration of how baptism comes with spiritual progress.


PYCL #4: SHOW HOW SPIRIT BREATHES LIFE INTO CREATION.

This Bible lesson has such a beautiful focus on the nature of spiritual creation. Baptism, or a purer view of creation, of man and God as spiritual and Spirit, is key to understanding this true creation of which we are a part.

Read together the Genesis 1 account (verses 1-4, 10, 26, 31 (to 1st. as citation B2).
Then compare it to how this creation arises in each of our Bible stories this week.
Each one demands a spiritual view of creation, a purer view of man and of God as Spirit.

Try using a fan to illustrate how we can feel and sense Spirit in the same way that we feel the breeze from a fan. But we can’t “see” Spirit in the traditional sense. Yet we feel the results and see the results of Spirit (and of the fan). Have them hold something in front of the fan to illustrate the way the breeze moves things. We can think of Spirit as “moving” or “animating” creation in this way.

Have a great week in Sunday School!

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