I was recently asked to guest speak about kid’s ministry in a college hermeneutics class. After I stopped laughing (and googling how to spell hermeneutics) I faced the challenge head on. I believe proper scripture interpretation matters the most at a child’s level. Remember, they’re deep in theformation of their mind, their spiritual identity, and their beliefs. We, as people who love and lead kids, must be doing it responsibly. With that in mind, here are 10 scripture passages that I use to form my philosophy of ministry to kids.
1. Matthew 18:5-6 And anyone who welcomes a little child like this on my behalf is welcoming me. But if you cause one of these little ones who trusts in me to fall into sin, it would be better for you to have a large millstone tied around your neck and be drowned in the depths of the sea. Teaching kids is a huge responsibility. We must take it seriously and do it well. Prepare well, speak truth, and remember they are God’s kids first.
2. 2 Corinthians 4:7 We now have this light shining in our hearts, but we ourselves are like fragile clay jars containing this great treasure. This makes it clear that our great power is from God, not from ourselves. I have a great treasure and I am fragile. My weaknesses and imperfections are not an excuse for not allowing God to use me to share the treasure. My power comes through Him and that’s the way it should be.
3. 2 Corinthians 4:13 But we continue to preach because we have the same kind of faith the psalmist had when he said, “I believed in God, so I spoke.” I’m not called to have it all figured out, I’m simply called to be obedient. When the days get hard and long and I lose focus I still believe in God so therefore, I speak.
4. Deuteronomy 6:4 Listen, O Israel! The Lord is our God, the Lord alone. And you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your strength. And you must commit yourselves wholeheartedly to these commands that I am giving you today. Repeat them again and again to your children. Talk about them when you are at home and when you are on the road, when you are going to bed and when you are getting up. Tie them to your hands and wear them on your forehead as reminders. Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates. The passing on of faith is not just the parent’s responsibility, it is the Church’s responsibility. It says, “listen, O Israel”, not “listen, O parents”. Parents are the #1 spiritual influencers in their kids’ lives but we as the Church are called to pass on faith to the next generation.
5. Matthew 19: 14 But Jesus said, “Let the children come to me. Don’t stop them! For the Kingdom of Heaven belongs to those who are like these children.” Kids have access to Jesus. Jesus intentionally loved on and blessed kids. He didn’t take time out of his work to love kids, it was his work.
6. Psalm 78:5-7 For he issued his laws to Jacob; he gave his instructions to Israel. He commanded our ancestors
to teach them to their children, so the next generation might know them—even the children not yet born—and they in turn will teach their own children. So each generation should set its hope anew on God, not forgetting his glorious miracles and obeying his commands. We are called to, and absolutely must, tell the stories of faith to this generation. Kids today can argue against the Bible and against religion but they can not argue with my own personal stories of faith. Tell stories.
7. 1 Timothy 4:12 Don’t let anyone think less of you because you are young. Be an example to all believers in what you say, in the way you live, in your love, your faith, and your purity. Kids are not too young to set an example. Kids must not be underestimated. Set the bar high for them.
8. Luke 2:49 “But why did you need to search?” he asked. “Didn’t you know that I must be in my Father’s house?” Kids desire to learn from God and about God. they’re hungry for Him.
9. 1 Samuel 3:10 And the Lord came and called as before, “Samuel! Samuel!” And Samuel replied, “Speak, your servant is listening.” Kids can hear God’s voice. They are able to hear from God and do what he says.
10. Acts 2:38-39 Peter replied, “Each of you must repent of your sins and turn to God, and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. Then you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. This promise is to you, to your children, and to those far away—all who have been called by the Lord our God.” Kids do not receive a mini Holy Spirit. They receive the same Holy Spirit we do. That should change our perception and change how we do ministry to them.
There are many other verse I could add. What would you add?