Background: Matthew is the first book in the New Testament and was written by Matthew to carefully document that Jesus is in fact the long awaited Messiah and fulfilled all of the Old Testament prophecies.
The religious leaders (Pharisees and Saducees) were continually trying to ask Jesus hard questions. They were so bound up in trying to fulfill the Law that they missed out on what was most important part. Jesus cleared all that up with His answer to their question and simplified the Christian life into one thing.
Ask the children…
What question did the religious expert ask Jesus?
“One of them (a Pharisee), an expert in religious law, tried to trap him with this question: 36 ‘Teacher, which is the most important commandment in the law of Moses?’” (Matthew 22:35, 36)
What was Jesus incredibly simple response?
“Jesus replied, ‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’[e] 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’” (Matthew 22:37, 38 )
The religious leaders were concerned with following every little detail of God’s Law and all the added manmade laws. However, Jesus was pointing them to the simple essence of the Law, to love God and to love one another. If man could live this way, then all the other Law would be fulfilled. Living this Christian life is pretty simple, let the love of Jesus flow through us and enable us to love Him back and to love others.
Ask your children what they think about the simple Christian life? How does this simplicity change the way they look at their Christian life? Ask God together to lead you into that simplicity of loving God and loving others.
If you like what you read about ways to teach children the Bible, check out the children’s book, Hooked on the Book, on this website. It is great for parents and kids because it provides the Big Story of God’s miraculous plan for His children in all 66 books in the Bible. CHECK OUT A FREE SAMPLE OF CHAPTER ONE BELOW.