If you want the teachers page then please click on the image for the pdf.
Essential Teachers notes:
Nicodemus is a great story for children who are facing adversity from their friends, but it is much more than just a brief encounter. The beauty of this story is that the confusion does not lead to doubt but belief which we can see later on in scripture. By mentioning those events we place this story into the wider gospel message.
Stories are given for inspiration, do use your own words and details
NB. The downloadable story notes use Sadducee and not Pharisee, apologies
Main Passage : John 3
Other passages : John 7, John 19
Nicodemus was a wise man and a very religious man too. He was a Pharisee, one of the Jewish leaders in Jerusalem.
Nicodemus didn’t like listening to stories about Jesus, he wanted to be there, to see what was happening, to ask questions. He saw Jesus do and say some amazing things. He decided that Jesus must have been sent from God to be able to do the things he did.
But that was a problem. The other Pharisee’s did like Jesus. Most of them thought he was a trouble maker. Jesus seemed to make fun of them, he told them that they had things upside-down, he told them that the way they understood God was wrong. Nobody liked being told they are wrong. If Nicodemus started to follow Jesus then the other Pharisee’s would make fun of him, they wouldn’t listen to him, they might think he had been tricked, that he was too foolish to see the truth.
But Nicodemus was sure Jesus was sent from God, and he really really really wanted to talk to Jesus. So Nicodemus came up with a plan. He sent word to Jesus to meet him late at night.
Nicodemus found his darkest cloak, his walking stick, and the smallest oil lamp in the house. He quietly snuck out the house and tiptoes along the dark Jerusalem streets. The streets were empty, everyone was in bed. Finally he came to the house Jesus was staying at and let himself in. Jesus was sitting waiting for him, a big smile across his face.
Nicodemus told Jesus about how he had watched and listened, how he had realised that Jesus was sent by God. In return, Jesus told Nicodemus that the only way to see the kingdom of God was to be born again.
Nicodemus had spent his life studying God, but he had no idea what Jesus was talking about. How could a fully grown man be born again. Nicodemus imagined being inside his mummies tummy again, he was too big, and his beard would tickle her. Nicodemus was very confused. Jesus wasn’t helping, he was saying Nicodemus needed to be born in the spirit, what did that mean?
Nicodemus had been sure that Jesus had been sent from God, but now he wasn’t so sure. He went home and thought for a long long time. He kept hearing more and more amazing stories about the things Jesus said and did. Then at the Festival of Tabernacles Nicodemus was with a group of Pharisee’s in the temple and Jesus was preaching. The crowd started whispering that Jesus was a prophet, some people even said he was the messiah.
Nicodemus’s friends asked the guards why they didn’t arrest Jesus for saying such crazy things. Then Nicodemus realised that it didn’t matter if he understood everything Jesus said, he had discovered that Jesus was sent from God. He stopped his friends and challenged them. They shouldn’t arrest Jesus without listening to him first. His friends mocked him, but Nicodemus didn’t care any more.
Nicodemus started to follow Jesus’s teachings. He found the more he trusted Jesus and his teachings, the more he discovered. When Jesus was put on the cross Nicodemus was there. He helped carry Jesus’ body to the tomb, he spent his own money buying perfume and cloth to wrap the body in. Nicodemus became a great friend and follower of Jesus even though it meant lots of his old friends rejected him. Nicodemus realised Jesus was more important to him, because in Jesus he had re-discovered God.
Today’s hero is Nicodemus because he shows us the gift of Discovery