The Wise Men Visit Baby Jesus – Christmas Sunday School Lesson

In this fun Christmas lesson, kids explore the joy of giving presents, inspired by Jesus’ birth and the adventurous Magi, who brought unique gifts like gold, frankincense, and myrrh. The story playfully contrasts this with King Herod’s not-so-nice plans, adding a dash of humor. It nudges kids to think about what special, heartfelt gifts they can offer Jesus, capturing the true, joyful spirit of Christmas and God’s loving care

Group Worship

Noel

Celebrate Christmas with your kids with these familiar lyrics with a fresh new musical twist. Click the link below to hear the song and get some fun motions to share with your class.

Lyrics & Motions

Feeling Like Christmas

The song teaches kids about the joy surrounding Jesus’ birth. With stars, angelic singing, and the birth of Jesus in a manger, it conveys the sense of wonder that Christmas brings.

Lyrics & Motions

Song9
Song10

Group Worship

Noel

Celebrate Christmas with your kids with these familiar lyrics with a fresh new musical twist. Click the link below to hear the song and get some fun motions to share with your class.

Lyrics & Motions

Song9

Feeling Like Christmas

The song teaches kids about the joy surrounding Jesus’ birth. With stars, angelic singing, and the birth of Jesus in a manger, it conveys the sense of wonder that Christmas brings.

Lyrics & Motions

Song10

Opening Activity | Ornament Roll

Christmas-Ball

Objects Needed: 1 round ornament (make sure it isn’t heavy) and a shoebox (or similar) for each kid

Instead of riding a donkey, kids will drive an ornament with a box.

Each kid places their ornament on the ground and, using the box provided, must fan their ornament across the finish line. The first ornament across the line wins!

Christmas-Ball

Object Lesson | "Magic" Star

toothpicks, water, and something to dispense a few drops of water (syringe or something)

Prepare the toothpicks by breaking each one in half (without completely separating them) and then align them in the shape of a star.

One of the most amazing events to ever happen in the sky occurred shortly after the first Christmas.

 

 

Wise men, who probably studied the sky regularly, saw a fantastic star they had never seen before rising in the east and knew it to be a sign.

At this point, pour just a few drops of water into the center of the arrangement. As the water hits the toothpicks’ broken edges, the edges will gradually come together to form a star!

Immediately they packed up their things and began the journey to discover what was underneath that star.

As they followed the star, they got closer and closer and closer to the most incredible sight they had ever seen. The star had led them directly to baby Jesus – the Saviour of the world!

When they found baby Jesus, they fell and worshipped him because they were in the presence of TRUE royalty!

Lesson Script

Matthew 2:1-18

Who doesn’t like to receive presents? I’ve never met anyone who doesn’t. But do you know why we give presents on Christmas? Some people say it’s because Santa Claus brings them. Others say it’s because a man named Saint Nicholas once handed out gifts to orphans.

I like to give presents on Christmas because it reminds me of the REAL Christmas story–the story of Jesus’ birth. His birth is the reason why we celebrate Christmas! And just like you do, Jesus got some presents on his birthday.

Do you know what Jesus got for his birthday? Not a video game system or a new soccer ball! Nope. He got some strange gifts that you and I would probably make a face at if we received them. And stranger still…these gifts came from some people who traveled from very far away just to give them to him.

These people I’m talking about were called “wise men”. I bet you’ve heard of them! Do you know how many there were? Sorry…that’s a trick question! Nativity sets usually come with three, but the Bible actually doesn’t say how many there were.

Anyway, the wise men came from the East to Jerusalem because they checked Google maps and saw that Jesus would be there.

Just kidding! They didn’t have Google or the internet back then. So how do you think the wise men found Jesus? This may sound really odd, but they followed a star.

How could they follow a star to find someone? Well, people that have studied history believe that the wise men were astrologers (people who study the stars) or kings (ever heard the song “We Three Kings”?). Others say they were sorcerers wielding magical powers, making them sound like something out of a Harry Potter book.

I’ll tell you what we do know for sure: the Bible calls them Magi, and that pretty much means they were some really wise dudes, most likely from Babylon/Persia, who had studied A LOT.

They may have seen a verse about Jesus’ star in Numbers 24:17. This verse was written a long time before Jesus was born. That means it’s a prophecy. It’s talking about something that was going to happen in the future. Let’s look it up and see what it says.

(Have a student read the first half of this verse).

Numbers 24:17

““I see someone who will come someday, someone who will come, but not soon. A star will come from Jacob; a ruler will rise from Israel.” (NCV)

So the Magi followed the star, came to Jerusalem, and started asking the Jews if they knew where exactly the new ruler, the “King of the Jews” might be. Then they found him, gave him his gifts, and went home. THE END.

Just kidding! This couldn’t be THE Christmas story without some more crazy stuff thrown in!

It’s now time for an evil villain to enter the picture. Let me hear your craziest, most evil villain laugh!

The villain was a rotten king called Herod. Herod thought HE was the King of Jews, and he got VERY jealous and angry when he heard that some magi had come to town telling people that a new “king” had been born.

So he asked some Jewish priests and teachers to tell him where Jesus was. They told him about a verse from the Old Testament that says that he would be born in Bethlehem.

(Have a student read Matthew 2:5-6)

“In the town of Bethlehem in Judea. The prophet wrote about this in the Scriptures:

Matthew 2:5-6

“But you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are not just an insignificant village in Judah. A ruler will come from you who will be like a shepherd for my people Israel.” (NCV)

But that wasn’t enough info for Herod. He decided to hold a secret meeting with the Magi and make them “give him all the deets.” He asked them to tell him about the star. Then he said:

(Say this in an evil villain voice) “When you find him, come and tell me so I can worship him too.”

But that was a bunch of baloney! He didn’t want to worship Jesus. Just like all villains, Herod was a liar. What do you think he really wanted to do? This is awful…but Herod wanted to kill him. He thought that Jesus would grow up and take over the kingdom!

After the Magi left Herod and his baloney, they followed the star until it stopped over the place where Jesus was. The Bible says that Jesus was now in a house. As soon as they saw Jesus, the Magi bowed down and worshipped him. Then, it was PRESENT TIME! They presented Jesus with three gifts: a Playstation, a Star Wars lego set, and an iPad.

Just kidding! But he really did get some expensive goodies— gold, frankincense, and myrrh. I’m sure you’ve heard of gold—it’s not cheap stuff. Now I know the other two sound like Halloween costumes, but they really are valuable items too. Does anyone know what they are?

Those are some good guesses. They were basically the kind of gifts people gave to kings in those days. Frankincense is a perfume, and myrrh is an oil. But they didn’t give them to baby Jesus so that he could smell like flowers and have slimy skin— the gifts had a point to them. They were to show everyone that Jesus would one day be King!

After the gift-giving was over, the Magi left the house where Jesus was. Now, they were supposed to go back to Herod, remember? Well, God warned them not to do that in a dream, so they hightailed it out of there and took a different route home to avoid Herod.

You can probably imagine how angry Herod was when he realized the Magi had stood him up. Like a typical evil villain, he flew into a rage and went on a killing spree. He ordered that all male babies in Bethlehem two years and under should be killed immediately. Why two years and under? Because the Magi had told him that Jesus had to have been born within the last two years.

Herod really was an evil dude. But luckily, God made sure to tell Joseph in a dream that Herod was coming after Jesus, so he took Mary and Jesus and fled to Egypt.

Pretty dramatic stuff, right? Well, even though the circumstances weren’t the easiest, God was always in control and kept Jesus safe from harm. He will keep us safe too!

The next time you give or receive a present, think about the Magi. They traveled a very long distance to see Jesus because they believed he is King. What would you give Jesus? There’s an old song by Christina Rossetti that goes like this:

What can I give Him, poor as I am?
If I were a shepherd, I would bring a lamb;
If I were a Wise Man, I would do my part;
Yet what I can I give Him: give Him my heart.

If you haven’t given Jesus your heart yet, there’s no better time than Christmas to do it. Talk to your teacher after class so you can find out how. If you have already asked Jesus to save you, obeying what He asks you to do in the Bible is the gift He wants from you this year.

(Close in prayer).

What does it mean to FOLLOW Jesus?
Free 6-week curriculum:

Play games, laugh together and teach your elementary class what it means to be a "disciple" - to follow Jesus with their whole heart.

Followers-Series

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Food-Cups

Group Game | Guess the Scent

Food-Cups

small bowls/cups, various foods/items that smell

The wise men brought spices/oils – which were really nice gifts back in that day to Jesus.

While we don’t have frankincense and myrrh to smell, we do have some fun items to smell to see if you can guess what they are.

Foods you might use: Peanut Butter, Popcorn, Mustard, Pickles, Olives, Bacon, Rosemary (most herbs, especially dried), chocolate chips, cinnamon,

If you like, you can cut cups down to be the food holders and then poke holes in another set of cups to cover the food so kids can’t peek.

Memory Verse

Luke 2:11

"For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord."

Small Group Questions

We talked about some of the things the magi might have done. Do you remember some of them?
Astrologers, Kings, Magicians “Soothsayer Priests”

What clued them in that there was a special event going on?
A new star in the sky

What event was the star ‘announcing’?
The birth of Jesus

Who was the evil villain in the story?
King Herod

What did King Herod tell the Wise Men he wanted?
He wanted to worship Jesus, just like them.

Was he telling the truth?
No!! He wanted to get rid of Jesus.

What was up with the gold, frankincense, and myrrh?
These were gifts that were given to kings. The wise men were saying, with their gifts, they believed Jesus was a king.

Have you given your heart to Jesus?

Why or why not?

Small Group Activity | String a Star

Star-String

1 Length of string tied to make a loop for each kid

Follow the instructions on the next page or in the video to make a star with a piece of string.

Then challenge each kid to tell the story of the wise men as they make the star!

Star-String

Words For This Week

Today we talked about the wise men or the Magi visiting Jesus.

These men were likely trained ‘stargazers,’ and they immediately knew it was special when they noticed a new star.

Of course, their journey wasn’t just as simple as following the new star they had seen. No, throughout the first Christmas story, there are a few twists and turns as the narrative unfolds, and this part is no different.

Herod, terrified that he will lose power, wants this new “baby king” he’s heard about dead. So Herod seems to convince the wise men that he also wants to worship Jesus if only they will tell him where the baby was! The wise men agree to tell him where Jesus is located on their way back home. Herod, satisfied with this plan, lets them go on their way.

God, even in this, is orchestrating every part of His plan perfectly. He informs the wise men of Herod’s ill intent, and the men return home another way to avoid Herod.

Through every element of God’s “coming to earth” story, we see what looks to be “chaos,” but we find out later is a master plan that ends with the most excellent Christmas present of all time.

Key Thought:

Christmas means God gave us Jesus!

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