Christmas Nativity Advent and Messages

A fun way to teach children about a Christ-centered Christmas...

Start by purchasing the advent nativity at Story Time Felts Nativity tbat features Mary and Joseph traveling by donkey from Nazareth to Bethlehem. Each day, the children move Mary and Joseph down the path. When they reach Bethlehem, a nativity scene is set up in a stable.

As you give the children the pieces of the nativity story, give them one of the corresponding messages with questions and activities below:

Stable: Do you know why Jesus was born in a stable? Hint: Look in Luke 2:4-7.

Shepherd: Do you know why we have candy canes at Christmas? What are they supposed to remind us of? Here's a hint: Look at the shape of the shepherd's crook (the staff). How is it shaped?

First Wise Man (given with a clipart of the three wisemen): These men are very wise. That is why we call them the Wise Men. What made them so wise? I think it's because they read the scriptures, believed in Jesus, and tried to do what was right. What do you think? What can you do so that you will grow up and be wise men and women, too? You won't go on a journey to see baby Jesus, but maybe you'll be there when he comes again someday!

Second Wise Man: These wise men lived two thousand years ago. Did you know that there are wise men and women who live now? They are not the kind that go on journeys to find baby Jesus. They are wise because they know a lot about Jesus. They love Jesus so much that they obey Him. They also teach you about Jesus. Who do you think these wise people are? What are their names? Here's a hint: Think of some of your church leaders and of your parents. They are all wise men and women. If you follow their teachings, you will become wise men and women, too!

Third Wise Man: Hi! It's me again! Was Jesus still in the stable when the Wise Men came to see Him? Look in Matthew 2 to find out. How old do you think Jesus was when they arrived? Why do you think it took the Wise Men so long to get there? Do you think it took a lot of faith for the Wise Men to see a star and then to travel for two whole years before they were able to see Jesus? I think it did. I think you can have that kind of faith, too!

Angel: After Jesus was born, a lot of angels came to see the shepherds. What did they say to the shepherds? Look in Luke 2:8-14. Do angels really have wings like the one on this figure? Why do people sometimes show angels with wings? What do the wings symbolize? Who are angels? Look in the Bible's Topical Guide under "Angels" and ask your mom and dad to read it to you. Listen to the song "Circles of Angels" on your Book of Mormon Scripture Scouts tape, and then sing along with it.

Donkey: Why do you think I am giving you a donkey? Who rode the donkey? Why was she a special woman? Listen to the first tape from the New Testament Scripture Scouts and sing the donkey song.

Manger: Jesus's birthday celebration is getting closer! Are you getting excited? We celebrate Jesus's birthday on December 25th, but this is not His real birthday. Do you know when He was really born? Here's a hint: It's the same time that the baby lambs are born. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was also organized in 1830 on the real anniversary of Jesus's birth. Can you think of something that you can give to Jesus this Christmas? You won't be able to wrap it in wrapping paper. Ask your mom and dad to help you think of something.

Joseph: This is a very special man. Heavenly Father trusted him to watch over Mary and to raise Jesus. He was a carpenter. What was his name? How did he find out that Mary was going to be the mother of the Son of God? Look in Matthew 1:18-24.

Mary: This person was the mother of Jesus, the only begotten Son of God the Father. She must have been a very special woman! Look in your New Testament Reader and read the story of Mary, Joseph, and baby Jesus with your mom and dad. Tell your mom and dad about your favorite part of the story, then draw a picture of it.

Jesus: Jesus loves you very much. He came to earth so that He could be our Savior. What does this mean? Jesus came so that He could die and be resurrected. Because Jesus was resurrected, you will be resurrected, too! Jesus also paid for our sins so that we can repent when we make mistakes. Jesus gave us the greatest gift of all. His atonement made it possible for us to be pure and clean so that we can return to live with Heavenly Father again. What can you do to say thank you to Him?

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