Tonight’s Advent lesson actually combined two lessons into one, joining two different but very much related topics. We began by thinking back to the consequences of Adam and Eve’s sin in the garden. By choosing to eat of the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, Adam and Eve had been promised that they would surely die. And immediately after God pronounced the curses upon them for their sin, we see God graciously providing for the forgiveness of their sins in a temporary way through the sacrifice of an animal. And thus begins the long history of animal sacrifice as a means of securing temporary atonement for sin. So we talked with the boys about the need for blood to be shed in order for there to be forgiveness, or remission, of sins. Sin brought death, and while that physical death did not come immediately for Adam and Eve, it was pictured through the death of an animal. We read together from Leviticus 6, explaining the process of offering sacrifices for one’s sin and the concept of the scapegoat, who would bear the sins of the people and remove them far from them. We also looked at Leviticus 17, explaining that the blood represented the life of the animal, and that it is the blood which makes atonement for sin.
But we made sure that the boys understood one important concept: that animal sacrifices could never permanently remove sin and its eternal consequences. The only sufficient sacrifice would be a perfect human being. They remembered from our last lesson that none of us would ever be able to live a perfectly sinless life. Only one Person could and did do that: God in human flesh, Jesus Christ. And so the sacrifice of an animal for sin in Genesis 3 foreshadowed the death that would ultimately satisfy God’s just requirement for sin—the death of a perfect human being, His only Son.
So, having addressed the need for the sacrificial system as a means of pointing us to Christ’s sacrifice on the cross, we turned our attention to the various prophecies concerning Jesus that are sprinkled throughout the Old Testament narrative. We looked at Isaiah 7:14 and 9:6 and Micah 5:2. We talked about the promised Messiah being born of a virgin, being called Immanuel, that He would be Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace, that He would be born in Bethlehem. But mostly, we emphasized to the boys that Jesus was to be the fulfillment of all that God had promised in the Garden of Eden and throughout the history of Israel—that God would send a Savior to save them from their sins!
Activity – For our activity, we found this pretty cool website that makes crossword puzzles. All you need to do is provide your clues and answers. We made a crossword after the theme of our lesson.