Here is free Bible lesson and game for kids on Easter, based on Luke 23:33-34.


– Nick Diliberto, Ministry to Youth

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Bible:  Luke 23:33-34

Bottom Line:  Jesus died on the cross for all of us—even the ones who persecuted Him.


  • Two long pieces of rope
  • Plenty of floor space
  • Masking tape


Tie the two pieces of rope together in the center so that the two ropes form a cross.

Tie knots on the ends of each rope to make it easy for students to hold on to the rope while they are pulling. 

Clear a large amount of space in the middle of the room.

Using masking tape, make a 4-foot by 4-foot box in the center of the floor.

Tape a small cross in the center of the box, and make sure the knot is on the cross.

Divide the class into four teams, equally distributing each team, so one team doesn’t have all of the stronger students.


Say:  We are going to play a game very similar to Tug-of-War.

Has anybody ever played Tug-of-War?

Today, we are playing it a little bit differently than the way you may have done it in the past.

Usually, Tug of War is played with two teams, each pulling in a different direction.

But we are playing with four teams.

Each team needs a name, right?

Team one, you are the Pharisees.

Team two, you’re the Scribes.

Team three, we are going to call you the Romans.

And, we’ll just call team four the Everybody Everywheres.

Each team will grab their end of the rope, and when I say, “Go,” pull as hard as you can.

The goal is to pull the center of our cross out of the box.

Are you ready?

Hold on tight!

One, two, three, go!


Say:  You guys were really aggressive as you tugged on that rope.

I wasn’t sure who was going to get the center out of the box first.

It was a little challenging with so many teams working against each other, wasn’t it?

But, we eventually had a winning team.

Great job!

Did anybody notice the shape our rope makes?

It’s a cross.

When I think about Jesus’s death on the cross, it hurts my heart how much my Savior suffered.

I’d love to blame the Pharisees and the Scribes who plotted against Jesus and wanted Him dead.

I’d love to blame the Romans.

They were in charge.

Jesus couldn’t have been given a death sentence without the Roman governor’s permission.

It would be easy just to sit around and complain about how they treated Jesus, but it wouldn’t be completely fair or entirely accurate to put all the blame on them.

You see, Jesus died for our sins.

We couldn’t be saved any other way.

Our sins kept us separated from God.

It wasn’t just the Pharisees, Scribes, and Romans who were responsible for the cross.

We are all responsible.

Because we sin, we need salvation.

Salvation comes from Jesus’s work on the cross.

Jesus died for all of us, even the Pharisees, Scribes, and Romans.

He wasn’t angry at the ones who put Him on that cross.

He loved them, too.

He even pleaded with God on their behalf as He suffered.

Read Luke 23:33-34.

And when they came to the place that is called The Skull, there they crucified him, and the criminals, one on his right and one on his left.

And Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.”

Isn’t that a powerful prayer?

These people had put Jesus on trial, convicted Him with false testimony, beaten Him, and they were about to kill Him.

Jesus had every right to be angry.

He was in so much pain.

The cross was a horrible way to die.

It was painful, and there was a lot of shame associated with crucifixion.

But, Jesus didn’t choose anger.

He chose love.

He prayed for the ones who were hurting Him.

There’s something very special about His prayer.

He wanted these people to be forgiven for the harm they were doing to Him.

That is a very special kind of love.

When we were playing our game, some of you got to be Pharisees.

Some of you were Scribes.

Some were Romans.

The rest of you were us.

You all had a part to play involving our cross, and we all had a part to play in the cross Jesus hung on.

Our lives were changed by Jesus’s sacrifice.

Now, we have a choice.

We don’t have to be separated from God anymore.

The price of our sins has been paid.

All we have to do is accept the salvation Jesus purchased for us on the cross.

End game.


If you like this lesson, then be sure to check out our Kid’s Ministry Curriculum for PreK – 6th Grade. It’s easy to use & ready to go, requiring little to no prep time. Our curriculum is also family focused, Bible based, interactive, and fun!
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