The Twelve Special Friends
Learn what it means to be a disciple.
“…all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another”
Who has friends? How many friends do you have? Let every child say a name of one of his/her friends. Prepare a picture of twelve men to count, which represent the twelve disciples. Ask the children to count to twelve.
When Jesus Christ started to teach people about God, He wanted special friends that can help Him in this work. Just like you all have friends, it was the same with Jesus. He wanted His friends to go everywhere with Him and to learn from Him. He had twelve special friends. They were called disciples.
One day, Jesus was standing on the side of a lake and was watching the fishermen cleaning their nets. He called Peter and Andrew and said: “Come with me.” They immediately left their boat and nets and went after Jesus. He also called James and John and they did the same. So, Jesus called Peter, Andrew, John, and James (Let the children repeat the names after you). Then Jesus saw Matthew who was collecting money. Jesus went to have dinner with him and Matthew left all his money and followed Jesus. So, how many friends does Jesus have now? Yes, they are five now: Peter, Andrew, John, James, and Matthew. He also chose more friends until He had 12 friends. Jesus chose them to follow Him, to learn from Him, and to help Him teach everyone the word of God.
What are the friends of Jesus called? (Disciples); Do we remember some of their names?
Our Lord Jesus called all of us who love Him, His friends, and His disciples. He said: “By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” Like His twelve special friends (His disciples), we too, should always follow Jesus (by doing what He tells us in the Bible), and be good friends with Him (by always praying and talking to Him). We must obey Him, learn from Him, and do the work He asks us to do. Most importantly, we must love everyone around us because this is what Jesus wants the most from us. Like this, we could be the disciples of Jesus.
Use a picture Bible. Show the children the twelve disciples and let them count with you the 12 men.