Jesus Calls the First Disciples

Watch on YouTube/read the Bible story online

Matthew 4: 12-23


Jesus moves to Capernaum, a busy fishing village. The remains of a synagogue from that time have been found there. Zebulun and Naphtali were tribes who had land in that area. Although Galilee was sometimes called “Galilee of the Gentiles”, by Jesus’s time most people there were probably Jewish.

Jesus starts his ministry (teaching, preaching and healing) once John the Baptist has been stopped. And he starts with the same words: “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near” is exactly what John said in the previous chapter. “Repent” means to turn around and start to think differently about things, to have a different mindset.

Mark and Luke’s gospels talk about the “kingdom of God”; Matthew usually calls it the “kingdom of heaven”. This difference may be a way of avoiding saying the name of God, something Jewish people did and still do: “heaven” could simply be a way of saying “God”. If you see the word “Lord” (often in small capitals) in the Old Testament this is also usually in place of God’s name.

The Sea of Galilee is a big lake: about 20 km long from north to south, and about 12 km wide at its widest. That’s slightly longer than Lake Windermere (the biggest lake in England) but a lot wider: about 8 times as wide.


Icebreaker/quickbuild  Make an object – we will tell you what you have to create and give you five minutes to work on it!
Story/home Make your way into church. We will read the first prayer (laminated sheets) and listen to the story.

Refreshments are served!
/fish You have 20 minutes or so to build something in response to the story, either on your own, or team up with others.  Some ideas:
·       ·         What does it mean to be a light to the world? Can you make a light that would help in a Minecraft night, or cave?
·         Make a fishing scene. Can you catch people (e.g. villagers)?
·         What does it mean to give up everything? Build something to express how the disciples might have felt
·         How do you heal in Minecraft? Build something to help other players.
If you don’t fancy building you can go back to the home village (/home) and read the story again in the church, or read some of the other stories in the library, or you might want to just explore the world, or work on your house.
WonderWhile you are creating, think about these questions with the adults on your table.
I Wonder: 
·         which part of this story you like the best?
·         what part is the most important?
·         where you are in this story or what part of the story is about you?
·         if there is any part of this story we can leave out and still have all the story we need?
There are many other things that can make us WONDER – what are you thinking about?
Final Prayer/home Back to the church for our final prayer (laminated sheet)
Dance/home We’ll put some music on and let your Minecraft characters dance about using jumping or emotes!
GamesFree play while the adults tidy up!!