|Bible Lesson:||The Fish with the Coin: Jesus is God|
|Memory Verse:||Matthew 16:16|
|Missions Concepts:||Missionaries go where the people are, but they need consent to come.|
|Missions Examples:||India (no missionary visas)|
[Start with the skit, Unprepared Fishermen I]
In the skit, what were the two things that Bob and Sally learned they need to do in order to catch fish? [Accept answers.] That's right. They needed fishing licenses, and they needed to go where the fish are.
Did you know being a missionary is a lot like being a fisherman? Missionaries are fishing for Christ.
First Point: Where the People Are
Just like Bob needed to leave the swimming pool and go to a place where fish would be, like a stream or a lake, missionaries need to go to a place where there are people. They can't go be missionaries in the middle of the woods, or an empty cave, or the middle of a lake. If they're going to tell people about Jesus, they need to go where there are people. There are lots of different places where there are people. Some people can be missionaries right where they are at home, telling people about Jesus in their neighborhood, or at school, or at the mall, ... but there are other places too, and some missionaries go to a place far away from home, because they know that there are people there in that place who need to hear about Jesus.
Second Point: Permission to Go
The fisherman's license gives him permission to fish. Just like a fisherman needs permission, a missionary needs permission too. Now, in this country, we don't need special permission from the government, because we already have freedom of speech. But sometimes, even though there's no law against telling people about Jesus, we still need permission in another way. If I'm going to bring children to Bible school, I have to have their parents' permission. I can't just go take kids from the playground, tie them up, and bring them here. I have to have permission. Missionaries also need permission from their church. If their church doesn't agree with them going, who will provide their prayer and financial support for the missions work? Missionaries have to be sent by a church. And if you're going to be a missionary in a foreign country, you have to get permission to go to that country. You need a visa stamp from the country you're going to on your passport, or they won't let you into their country without a visa. So you have to have permission to come.
One country we'd like to send missionaries to is India, but India doesn't give visas to missionaries just so they can come and tell people about Jesus. If you want to go to India, you have to have another reason, a reason that is approved by the government of India, or they won't let you come. In May, Tom and Janelle Ricker, and Ike and Nancy Graham, went to India. They were sent by our churches, but they could only go for a short time, because they only had a tourist visa, which doesn't last very long. You get a tourist visa if you're going on vacation in a foreign country, but you can't stay for a whole year. So our missionaries that went to India are back here now, in the United States.
Application: Parental Permission
Just like fishermen need a license, and foreign missionaries need permission to go into the country, if we bring our friends to Bible School, we need their parents' permission to bring them.
Invite any children who want to do missions work to stay after the lesson and discuss it further.