Reverse the Curse Bible Lesson & Game

The Man With Leprosy

Bible Point: Jesus reverses the curse of death. 

Set Up: Establish a large playing area.

Before Playing: Explain that leprosy is a terrible, crippling, skin disease. During Bible times there was no cure for it. People with leprosy had to stay far away from other people so they wouldn't infect them with the disease. When they walked around public places they would have to yell out, "Unclean! Unclean!" to warn others of their condition.

How To Play: Have all the players line up on one side of the playing area. Designate one player to have "leprosy" and place him or her into the center of the playing area. At the go, have the players run across to the other side of the playing area. The player with leprosy must yell out, "Unclean! Unclean!" and try to tag as many players as possible. The players that make it across to the other side are safe for that round of play. The players that are tagged become leprous and help to tag players in the next round. Play continues as such until all players are tagged and become leprous, that is unclean.

Once all the players have been tagged and are unclean, sit down and read Mark 1:40-45 from a child-friendly Bible.

Object Lesson

A long time ago, before there was a medical cure for leprosy, those who had this terrible disease were under a curse of death. In today's Bible story, the man with leprosy begged for healing. Jesus saw him, was filled with compassion, and healed him. The man was no longer under the curse of death. He had been healed, redeemed, rescued, and saved from death! But did he keep this good news to himself? No, he ran and told everyone what Jesus had done for him. 

Today, we are all under a curse of death from a disease that is much worse than leprosy. This disease infects you and me and everything on the planet! It is responsible for harming and killing more people than all other terrible diseases combined. It affects our relationships with our friends, our families, and our relationship to God. There is no man-made cure for our disease. It is one hundred percent fatal all of the time. The earth decays because of it and every living thing will die from it. Do you know what this disease is called? The Bible calls our disease "sin." God is holy; he is perfect. He can't just ignore our sins, they must be punished. Our sin separates us from God. Unless Jesus heals us, we will remain unclean, unforgiven, separated from God, and under this terrible curse. 

But God does not want us separated from him. The Bible says, "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him" John 3:16-17. 

Jesus died on the cross to heal us, forgive us, and to take the punishment we deserve for sinning against God. The Bible says, "If we confess our sins, God is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness" 1 John 1:9. (To confess means to admit or agree with God that you are a sinner--you are unrighteous.)

Jesus cleanses us from sin and redeems us, that is he buys us back, from eternal death. Jesus reversed the curse of death by dying on the cross for us. And just like the man that couldn't keep the good news of his healing to himself, we too need to tell others what Jesus has done for us.

Now we will finish playing our game. Only this time we will reverse the curse. The last player to be tagged from our game will now become the "redeemed" player. Rather than yelling, "Unclean! Unclean!" that player must yell, "I'm redeemed! I'm redeemed!" Play proceeds as before until all of the players are redeemed!

Finish with prayer
Dear Jesus, we admit that we are sinners and need your forgiveness. Thank you for dying on the cross to reverse the curse of sin and eternal death. We believe that you are the Lord of all creation and of our lives. Thank you for healing us from our terrible disease of sin. Help all of us to obey and follow you all the days of our lives. Amen.

Copyright 2003 Sarah A. Keith
*The name of this game was inspired by Pastor Lucky Arnold's sermon on the man with leprosy.

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