Young children are fun to teach. For the most part they get so excited about the smallest things and they are easily amused and accept simple explanations about things they don't understand. To some extent, I've come to believe that simplicity is best when teaching basic concepts.
“Fix these words of mine in your hearts and minds; tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Teach them to your children, talking about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates,” Deuteronomy 11:18-20 (NIV)
Early schools used the Bible as their primary teaching resource. It was used to teach reading, writing, vocabulary, spelling, memorization skills, some geography and history and of course theology and catechism. As old-fashioned and archaic as that may seem today, many of America's founding fathers, (George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin), learned primarily from Scriptures because that's what they had available. Yet they learned enough by reading, writing and studying the Scriptures to lead extraordinary lives that changed the face of history.
Perhaps some of the things they learned long ago are the same thing we teach our children today.
“In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” Genesis 1:1 (NIV)
“Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one.” Deuteronomy 6:4 (NIV)
The Ten Commandments (Exodus 20)
The Lord's Prayer ( Matthew 6)
There are a few that I choose to teach in addition, that I believe can come in handy as one grows up
“…he will never leave you nor forsake you…” (Deuteronomy 31:8)
For I know the plans I have for you….. ( Jeremiah 29:11-14)
….. “I have loved you with an everlasting love; ……” (Jeremiah 31:3)
“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens:” (Ecclesiastes 3)
“Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.” Proverbs 3:5-6 (NIV)
Of all the verses we teach though, some of the favorite I love to teach the little ones are:
“For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” Psalm 139:13-14 (NIV)
But now, this is what the LORD says— he who created you, Jacob, he who formed you, Israel:
“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine.” Isaiah 43:1 (NIV)
“The gatekeeper opens the gate for him, and the sheep listen to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out.” John 10:3 (NIV)
It is a privilege to teach my children: God created you. He has great plans for you. He's always with you. He loves you. He knows everything about you. He even knows your name. A child will take that simple lesson to heart and remember it and find comfort in it. Will you?
He Knows My Name