Bring a bowl of raisins, a bowl of grapes, and some napkins. Print out the visuals below and cut them apart. Put a circle of tape on the back of each one and give each visual to a different child. Hold your open Bible on your lap. Explain that this is a true story from the Bible.
JESUS, THE TRUE VINE
(Read John 15:1 and 5.) God says that He acts like a gardener. A gardener helps plants grow. God helps us live right and grow as Christians. In Bible times, many people grew grapes. A grape plant has several parts. First, there is the vine. (Have the child who has the Grape Vine place it on the wall.) Whose name is on the vine? (Jesus) The Bible calls Jesus the True Vine.
On the vine are many branches. (Have the children with the Side, Bottom, and Top Branches place them on the vine.) Good branches produce grapes. These grapes are called the fruit of the vine. (Pass around napkins and a bowl of grapes and let each child take a napkin and some grapes.)
God is the Gardener in the garden of life. Jesus is the Vine who grows good branches. Christians are those branches. If you have asked Jesus to be your Savior, you are like a branch on a vine in God’s garden.
What happens to a branch if it is cut off the vine? (It dies; it doesn’t grow anymore.) That’s what happens to anyone who isn’t a true follower of Jesus. The person may look like a Christian, and even act like one (by going to church and doing good things). But, if this person hasn’t invited Jesus into his life, he’s a fake Christian. He may fool other people, but he can’t fool God.
Branches need water and food to grow. How do the branches get these things? (through the roots) The vine sends food and water from the roots to the branches. Then the branches send food and water to the flowers that will produce grapes. (Pass around a bowl of raisins and let each child take some.)
Once the vine has been taken care of and well watered, it makes grapes. Some grapes are dried like these. We grow spiritually when we get food from the Bible (read the Bible and memorize what it says) and stay connected to Jesus. We don’t make grapes, but we do make good actions that remind people of the way Jesus acted. Our good actions are called spiritual fruit. Jesus gives a promise that helps us stay close to Him. (Read Matthew 28:20.)
This verse is part of the Great Commission, the last command Jesus gave before He went to heaven. Jesus promises to be with us always. Jesus will never leave us, just as a vine never leaves the branches.
(If you have children who are interested in becoming part of God's family and having Jesus as their Savior, talk with them individually after your lesson.)
(This lesson is an excerpt from Elementary Bible Activity Lessons. Try a FREE sample and then choose your lesson by topic or Bible story. Each lesson is just $5.95 each and includes a teacher's lesson plus 4-6 student activity sheets. Copy as many as you need for your classes. Quantity discounts are available when you purchase ten or more lessons.)