71 Lesson 10 • Grades 3 & 4
10 Jesus Returns to Heaven
Matthew 28:16-20; Acts 1:1-11
God wants us to tell the world about Jesus.
“Therefore go and make disciples of all nations,
baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the
Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to
obey everything I have commanded you. And surely
I am with you always, to the very end of the age”
Weaving Faith Into Life:
Kids will help tell the world about Jesus by
beginning with three people.
Lesson Sequence What Students Will Do Classroom Supplies Teacher Pack Supplies
Tell the World (about 10 min.)
Listen to a message in different
languages and try to figure out
what that message is.
CD player CD: “Everybody
Needs to Hear”
Around the World (about 15 min.)
Learn how big the world is and
that they have an important part in
telling the world about Jesus.
Bible, newsprint, index
cards, pens, marker
“Countries of the
Who Needs to Know? (about 20 min.)
Play a game and think about people
to tell about Jesus.
Bible, basket, treats,
Bible Truth Sleuth, pens
Go! (about 15 min.)
Make traffic lights as reminders to
go and make disciples of all nations.
Bibles, Bible Truth
Sleuth, CD player, glue,
crayons or markers,
CD: “Go and Make
(track 8), “Lyrics”
poster, “Green Light”
Bible Background for Teachers
72 FaithWeaver • Spring Quarter
As we begin looking at this passage, it’s interesting to note
that even after spending three years with Jesus and seeing
him alive after witnessing his death on the cross, some of his
disciples had doubts. But we should be careful not to be too
hard on them. How skeptical would you be if you heard of
someone being dead for three days and then coming back
to life? Wouldn’t you be suspicious that some kind of trick
was being played?
The disciples’ doubts didn’t stop Jesus from trusting them.
In Matthew 28:18-20, Jesus placed the future of all he had
done on earth into their hands. And he commissioned them
with a task that has yet to be completely fulfilled: “Make
disciples of all nations.” As Christians we have inherited that
commission to reach our world for Christ today. But Jesus
didn’t just give a task; he promised support. He told them,
and us, that he would be with his people always, even to the
end of the world as we know it!
We all know that Jesus appeared to his disciples multiple
times after his resurrection. But we don’t often note the
number of times he appeared or the number of people he
appeared to over the 40 days he remained on earth. Luke
emphasizes that in Acts 1:3-4. The “convincing proofs” left no
doubt in his followers’ minds that Jesus had truly come back
to life. And following the commission he had given them,
they were ready to spread the word to their world!
Before Jesus physically departed for heaven, he gave his
followers a plan to use in reaching that world. First they were
to wait. The power would come when the Holy Spirit came
on them. Then they were to move out from Jerusalem step
by step, eventually reaching the ends of the earth. That plan
is a good one for us to follow as well. If we have the Holy
Spirit in our lives, he’ll empower us to reach others for Christ,
whether it’s across the street or across the world.
As Jesus was ascending to heaven, angels came to give
the disciples one last prod and one last promise. It did no
good for the followers to stand looking into the sky. They
needed to get going on the plan Jesus had laid out for them.
The promise the angels gave was that Jesus would return—
in a powerful and unanticipated way.
In our lives it’s easy to be comfortable in our faith in Jesus
and not worry too much about others. But we, too, must
remember that Jesus is coming back to take his followers
to live with him in heaven. Until he comes, he has given his
followers the charge to share his love with everyone. That’s
not just something we should do—it’s what our lives should
Jesus Returns to Heaven
Matthew 28:16-20; Acts 1:1-11
Devotion for Teachers
Jesus invites us into a dynamic relationship. He helps
us grow—and he offers us full participation in his work
and mission on the earth. What a privilege—to be
entrusted with taking Christ’s message to others!
Weaving Faith Into Your Life: Reread the Great
Commission from Matthew 28:16-20. It says the
disciples had doubts. What doubts do you struggle
with? Jesus issued a strong invitation and challenge.
Imagine Jesus personally inviting you to carry out
his plans! How do his words make you feel? Take a
moment to discuss your doubts with God, and ask him
to build your confidence and strengthen your desire to
participate in his awesome work.
73 Lesson 10 • Grades 3 & 4
Understanding 3rd & 4th Graders for Teachers
Third- and fourth-graders love faraway places. They can become enthralled with books
and movies about adventures in distant lands. This lesson will help them see there are
many faraway lands with people who need to hear about Jesus. They’ll also learn the
best place to start telling others about Jesus is where they live right now!
Easy Prep for Teachers
Around the World—Make a photocopy for each child of the “Countries of the World”
handout from your Teacher Pack.
Go!—Cut out the “Green Light Circles” from your Teacher Pack. You’ll need one circle
for each child.
Web Help—Get bonus teacher tips and ideas at faithweaver.com.
Tell the World
When kids arrive, have them share with a partner how they followed through on last
week’s Daily Challenge.
I have some important messages for you here. You’ll need to listen
very carefully to hear what’s being said.
Cue your CD to “Everybody Needs to Hear,” and play it for
• What do you think these messages are telling you?
Have kids tell the class what they think the messages mean.
• Did you understand everything you heard? Why or why not?
(No, I didn’t understand any of it because I don’t speak any of those
languages; yes, I understood the word Jesus several times because the
name is similar in several languages.)
• How would you feel if you were told this was the most important
message you’d ever hear in your life? (Answers will vary.)
• What would help you understand this message? (Hearing it in
English; hearing it in a language I can understand.)
Well, God wants people to hear a very simple message, no matter
where they live or what language they speak. We’re very fortunate
we have people who can share this message so everyone can hear
that Jesus loves them and died for them. Each one of the messages
you heard was “Jesus loves you.” Today we’ll learn that God wants
us to tell the world about Jesus.
• What if no one ever told anyone else about Jesus? (Some people
would never know anything about him; most people wouldn’t go to
74 FaithWeaver • Spring Quarter
• What if no one ever told you about Jesus? (I wouldn’t know that he
loves me; I wouldn’t know that I can always ask him for help; I wouldn’t
go to heaven.)
In today’s lesson, we’ll learn about what God wants us to tell the whole
world. He has something he wants us to tell everyone about. We’ll find
out what that is and how we can communicate it to the world.
Bible Story Exploration
Around the World
Open your Bible to Matthew 28:16-20, and read the passage aloud.
In this passage, Jesus tells his disciples to tell the whole world
about him. That’s a lot of places! Let’s see how many countries we
Have kids name as many countries as they can think of, and write them on a sheet of
newsprint as kids name them. When kids have named as many as they can, have them
each choose a different country and write it on an index card. As each child chooses a
specific country, cross the country name off your list so that it’s not chosen again.
We’re going to play a game in which we’ll go and tell the world
about Jesus. First, I’ll give each of you a list of all of the countries in
Give each child a copy of the “Countries of the World” handout.
Your job is to go around the room and tell people that Jesus loves
them. Refer to the country named on each person’s index card, and,
after you’ve told that person about Jesus’ love, check that country
off your list.
When everyone has finished, have kids sit down.
• Why is it important to tell the whole world about Jesus? (So that
everyone will have a chance to believe in him; so that everyone will
have a chance to go to heaven; so that all people will know that Jesus
loves them and can help them when they’re in trouble.)
• In our game, could you tell the whole world about Jesus? Why or
why not? (No, because there were only a few of us in the room; no,
because only a few of the countries in the world were represented in
• What would have helped you tell the whole world about Jesus?
(More time; a different way of telling people; a computer.)
• How can we tell the world about Jesus? (We can travel to foreign
countries; we can e-mail and text people; we can tell everyone we
Post the Bible Timeline
from your Teacher Pack in a
prominent place to give kids
a better idea of when this
story took place.
75 Lesson 10 • Grades 3 & 4
God wants us to tell the world about Jesus. The world is a big
place, and people in lots of countries need to hear about Jesus.
Even though we may not be able to go to every country, we can still
tell the people we know in our part of the world about Jesus. Let’s
explore how we can do that.
Weaving Faith Into Life
Who Needs to Know?
Have kids sit in a circle. Open your Bible to Matthew 28:19-20, and read the verses
aloud: “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in
the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching
them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you
always, to the very end of the age” (Matthew 28:19-20).
• What’s the most important thing you could tell people about
Jesus? (That he loves them; that he’s God’s Son; that he is God.)
• Why is it important to tell the world about Jesus? (So that everyone
will understand who he is; so that everyone will have a chance to
believe in him; so that everyone can go to heaven.)
• What makes it hard to tell your friends about Jesus? (I’m too shy; I’m
afraid they’ll laugh at me; I’m afraid they’ll call me names.)
• How can you tell your friends about Jesus? (I can tell them about
times I turn to Jesus in my own life; I can tell them what Jesus has done
for my family and me.)
• What do you think would happen if no one told anyone about
Jesus? (No one would know who Jesus is; no one would have a
relationship with him; no one would go to heaven.)
Take a basket of treats to a child on the other side of the room from where you
were sitting. Then return to your previous seat in the circle.
We’re going to pass this basket around and take a treat as we tell
others, “Jesus loves you.”
Have the child with the basket pass it to the child on his or her right and say,
“Jesus loves you.” Then have that child take a treat and pass the basket to the next
child and say, “Jesus loves you.” Continue until the basket returns to you. (Be sure that
it returns to you before everyone has had a chance to hold it and pass it on.)
You know, I don’t think I want to tell anyone about Jesus, so I’m not
going to continue passing the basket.
Hold the basket on your lap for a moment.
• How did my not wanting to tell others about Jesus affect the rest
of the class? (It wasn’t fair; a lot of people are left out; lots of us won’t
get a treat.)
• How did it make those of you feel who didn’t get a treat because of
my not telling you about Jesus? (Bad; left out; it wasn’t fair.)
See page 17.
76 FaithWeaver • Spring Quarter
• For those of you with a treat and who had someone tell you that
Jesus loves you, how did it feel when you saw other kids did not
hear that Jesus loves them and didn’t get a treat? (It didn’t feel
right; it was unfair; it made me feel guilty.)
Pass the basket to the next child, and tell that child, “Jesus loves you.” Continue
until everyone has heard someone say, “Jesus loves you” and has received a treat.
• Why should we tell people about Jesus? (So that they get to live in
heaven forever; so that they learn who Jesus is; so they know that Jesus
can help them.)
Have kids turn to the “Who Needs to Know?” activity in Lesson 10 of their Bible
On your Bible Truth Sleuth page, you’ll see a basket. Inside the
basket, I want you to write the names of three people you know
who need to be told about Jesus and a way you can tell them. You
can talk to them, call them on the phone, write them a letter, or
think of another way that would be best.
Give kids several minutes to write three names and how they will tell those
people about Jesus. While kids are working, tell them that telling these people
about Jesus will be their Daily Challenge this week. Be sure to commit to this Daily
Challenge as well, and tell kids about your commitment. They will be more inclined
to follow through on this commitment when they see you doing the same.
God wants us to tell the world about Jesus. Our own neighborhoods
and towns are good places to start! Take your Bible Truth Sleuth page
home today, and keep it where you will see it and remember to tell
the people whose names you wrote down about Jesus.
We’re going to pray for the people we wrote about right now. I’ll
start the prayer; then we’ll go to my right. When it’s your turn, say
the names of the people on your page.
During the following prayer, have kids fill in the blank with the names they wrote.
Dear Jesus, we want to tell others about your amazing love! We pray
for the hearts of everyone in the world so people can come to know
you. Help us start with people we know who need you, including
these specific people: _____________. Thank you for loving us,
Jesus. In your name, amen.
Give each child a “Green Light” circle. Have kids turn to the “Go!” activity in Lesson 10 of
their Bible Truth Sleuth.
You’ll notice that your circles look like a globe and have “GO!”
written on them, along with the Scripture reference for today’s Key
Verse, Matthew 28:19-20. Let’s read that together.
77 Lesson 10 • Grades 3 & 4
Have kids turn to Matthew 28:19-20 in their Bibles. Read the verses aloud
as kids follow along: “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations,
baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the
Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded
you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age” (Matthew
Instruct kids to color their “GO!” circles to look like the world. Give kids several
minutes to finish. Then have them cut out the traffic lights from their Bible Truth
Sleuth pages and glue the globes to the bottom of the traffic lights, where green
lights would normally go.
You can take this home as a reminder that God wants us to tell the
world about Jesus. On the back of your traffic light is the “Word for
the Week.” So this week, each time you do your “Word for the Week,”
think about all the people in the world who need to hear about Jesus,
and pray for them.
Dear God, thank you so much for Jesus and for the fact that by
believing in him, we can have eternal life. Help us spread that news
to everyone in the world, whether in our own neighborhoods or
schools or in another country. We pray that everyone who hasn’t
heard about how much Jesus loves them will hear soon. In Jesus’
name we pray, amen.
Cue your CD to “Go and Make Disciples” (Matthew 28:19)
and have kids sing the Key Verse song and hold up their green
lights every time they sing the word “Go!” Refer to the “Lyrics”
poster if necessary.
The Key Verse in today’s
lesson gives your third- and
instructions from God
about sharing their faith
with others. Kids this age
need specific instruction,
so you can use this verse
as a guideline for how you
relay instructions to your
class. Give them a specific
and direct command, give
them guidelines as to how to
do it, and encourage them
by letting them know that
you’re there to help. By doing
this for your class, you’ll
help them know God also
will help them do what he’s
asking them to do.