THE PROPHET DANIEL
Lesson 1: A Reputation of Strength
After completing this lesson, the children will learn that consistently living a pure and holy life builds a strong, Godly reputation.
Behavior, Choices, Daniel, Reputation
AS KIDS ARRIVE (7 minutes)
What's My Reputation (Activity) Click here
Print out enough copies of "What's My Reputation" activity sheets to give to each child. After the class completes the activity, explain to them how easy it is to get a reputation, and how some reputations are good and some bad. Ask them to consider their own reputations.
OPENING PRAYER AND PRAISE (5 minutes)
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MEMORY WORK (12 minutes)
"Even a child is known by his actions, by whether his conduct is pure and right." Proverbs 20:11
Before class write each word of the verse on separate index cards. Say the verse together as a group several times. Divide the kids into two teams and have a race to see which team can put the verse in the correct order in the shortest amount of time.
SCRIPTURE READING AND DISCUSSION (15 minutes)
Ask the class if anyone knows what "reputation" means. Have someone look up the word in a dictionary, or give this definition: "What people think of someone because of their attitude, actions or what he or she has said."
What would you do if some of your friends at school wanted you to try a cigarette? What would your first reaction be? (Allow time for discussion.) How about something not as harmful, but still wrong like a friend urging you to watch a PG-13 movie without permission from your parent. Would you immediately say no? What we do at times like these gives us a reputation, either a good or bad one. If we give in and do what is wrong, our reputation for doing good is very weak. If we quickly say no and stand firm for what is morally right, we build a strong reputation for doing good.
Read Daniel 1:1-21 (Daniel chooses to honor God)
Read the passage to the children as they follow along in their own Bible.
(A “eunuch” in this instance means an officer or steward who rules or is in charge of a lord’s household when he is absent.)
1. Why did the servant want Daniel and his companions to eat the king's food? (So they would be strong and healthy like the others.)
2. Because he didn't want to eat or drink anything unclean, what did Daniel ask to be served instead? (Vegetables and water.)
3. How did Daniel prove he and his companions didn't need to eat the kings food? (After a 10 day test, they were stronger and looked better than those who ate the king's food.)
4. How was Daniel rewarded for having a strong reputation of one who honors God? (He was given knowledge and wisdom and allowed to serve before the king.)
5. "In Daniels time", certain foods were considered unclean and forbidden. What kind of things do we have in our life today that might be considered unclean and forbidden? (Answers will vary.)
CLASS EXERCISE (7 minutes)
Cutting Corners (Object Talk/Story) Click here
ALTERNATE CLASS EXERCISE (5 minutes)
Known By Our Fruits (Object Talk) Click here
APPLICATION (15 minutes)
Give each child a sheet a paper and a pencil, and ask them to write down at least ten ways they can build a strong reputation for doing good. If time permits you can write down each child's tenth item on the board. Also have them take this list home to show their parents. Click here for an example
Conclude the lesson with the following thought: A reputation is built by doing something over and over. If you do what is right over and over, you build a reputation for doing good. If you do what is not right over and over, you build a reputation for doing what is wrong. The stronger your reputation is for doing what is right, the closer you will feel to God, and the easier it will be to continue doing what is right. Also, others will see you as a strong Christian, someone they can look up to. Daniel's reputation was obviously strong. No matter the situation in which he found himself, he always honored God and not let evil enter his life. We can all learn a valuable lesson from Daniel about building a strong and Godly reputation. You may even want to take an extra serving of vegetables tonight at dinner.
How can you make your friends fireproof? Find out next week.
CLOSING PRAYER (2 minutes)
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