This passage marks a turning point in the Gospel narratives where Jesus begins to share with his disciples what he will suffer when they come to Jerusalem. It’s a powerful reminder that the crucifixion was no surprise or accident. It was God’s plan to atone for the sin of humankind and make salvation possible for all who put their faith in Jesus Christ.
We are following Mark 8:31-38, but this passage is very similar in Matthew 16 and Luke 9. You can compare Gospel passages easily with the Harmony of the Gospels on the Blue Letter Bible. Use the following PDF Sunday School lessons and activities to help kids understand the full story of Jesus dying on the cross. The links below are direct downloads.
More Activities and Ideas
- Watch the video version of this children’s sermon
- Compare another Mark 8:27-38 kids sermon from rfour.org
- Compare our children’s sermon on Matthew 16:21-28
Video Bible Story
Children’s Sermon on Mark 8:31-38
This message communicates to children the importance of understanding who Jesus was and what His mission was. He knew that He came to Earth in order to love and care for others, but that ultimately God’s plan was for Him to suffer and die. His closest followers did not understand how victory could come through death, but Jesus recognized that glory would come through suffering. We rejoice that because of His death, we have eternal life.
Use this craft ideas to help children reflect on what it costs to follow Christ. Print the directions below, gather your project supplies, and watch our demonstration video as you prepare.
8:31 Then he began to teach them that the Son of Man must undergo great suffering, and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again.
8:32 He said all this quite openly. And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him.
8:33 But turning and looking at his disciples, he rebuked Peter and said, “Get behind me, Satan! For you are setting your mind not on divine things but on human things.”
8:34 He called the crowd with his disciples, and said to them, “If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.
8:35 For those who want to save their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake, and for the sake of the gospel, will save it.
8:36 For what will it profit them to gain the whole world and forfeit their life?
8:37 Indeed, what can they give in return for their life?
8:38 Those who are ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of them the Son of Man will also be ashamed when he comes in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.”