Are you familiar with the Gospel Christmas Tree? I wasn’t until I received our Junior Church planning bag earlier this month and discovered that our activity that upcoming Sunday would be to decorate a tree. I wish I’d known about this activity when my children were young. The kids really enjoyed decorating the Gospel Christmas Tree and my husband and I enjoyed leading them through the decorating. It may not be something you can do this year but you could pin it onto your pinterest Christmas board for next year!
Our guide in decorating was an article entitled “The Gospel Christmas Tree ~Trimming Your Tree with Spiritual Significance” from Turning Point Magazine. I don’t have information on the author nor the date of publication. I did check their website for a link but was unsuccessful so I’ll walk you through the steps of trimming the tree from the article. We asked the older children to help us with the Scripture readings (New International Reader’s Version Children’s Bible). We were grateful for eager volunteers!
Here’s what you’ll need:
- A small tree strung with lights. Keep the tree unlit.
- A Black Ornament*
A White Lamb**
- Red Ornaments
- Gold Ornaments
Trimming the Tree:
→ We began by sharing the significance of the evergreen tree. Unlike the deciduous tree whose leaves change color and die, the evergreen does not change with the seasons. This is a beautiful reminder that God is alive and unchanging. Scripture reading: JAMES 1:17 “Every good and perfect gift is from God. It comes down from the Father. He created the heavenly lights. He does not change like shadows that move.”
→The decorating began by placing the black ornament in the center of the tree. This is a reminder of our sinful nature that separates us from a Holy God. Scripture reading: Romans 3:23 – Everyone has sinned. No one measures up to God’s glory. And Isaiah 64:6 – All of us have become like someone who is “unclean.” All of the good things we do are like polluted rags to you. All of us are like leaves that have dried up. Our sins sweep us away like the wind.
Next the stars were put on the tree to show how God loved us so much that HE sent His Son to earth in human form – fully God, yet fully man. The stars are a reminder of the star that led the shepherds to the stable the night Jesus was born. Scripture reading: Colossians 2:9 – God’s whole nature is living in Christ in human form. And 1 John 4:14 – The Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world. We have seen it. We give witness to it.
→The Christmas Tree was lit. Before Christ came, humans were in darkness, The lights remind us that Jesus came to be the Light in a world of darkness. Scripture reading: JOHN 1:4-5 – Life was in him, and that life was the light for all people. The light shines in the darkness, But the darkness has not understood it.
Little hands placed the lamb on the the tree. Jesus didn’t remain a baby in a manger but grew up to become the spotless Lamb of God – only a perfect sacrifice would pay for our redemption. Scripture reading: JOHN 1:29 – The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him. John said, “Look! The Lamb of God! He takes away the sin of the world!” And CORINTHIANS 5:21 – Christ didn’t have any sin. But God made him become sin for us. So we can be made right with God because of what Christ has done for us.
The red ornaments represent the blood of Jesus. Without the shedding of blood, there is no forgiveness of sins. Scripture reading:HEBREWS 9:22 – In fact, the law requires that nearly everything be made clean with blood. Without the spilling of blood, no one can be forgiven. And ROMANS 5:9 – The blood of Christ has made us right with God. So we are even more sure that Jesus will save us from God’s anger. Share that Jesus’ death on the cross became the bridge that spans the gulf of sin that separates us from God. Jesus is the one and only way to God.
The ribbons and bows remind us that eternal life is the gift of Jesus to all who believe and ask Him to be their Savior. Scripture reading: ROMANS 6:23 – When you sin, the pay you get is death. But God gives you the gift of eternal life because of what Christ Jesus our Lord has done. To receive it, we have only to believe and ask Him to be our Savior.
Next are the snowflakes which show that we are made white as snow when we accept His gift of salvation. Scripture Reading: PSALM51:7b Wash me. Then I will be whiter than snow.
We placed the gold ornaments on the tree to remind us of the hope of heaven with its streets of gold. Jesus has promised that when we die or when He returns to earth, all believers will spend eternity in heaven with Him. Scripture Reading: REVELATION 21:21 – The twelve gates were made from twelve pearls. Each gate was made out of a single pear. The main street of the city was made out of pure gold, as clear as gl
And finally it was time for the tinsel.The reflective quality of the tinsel reminds us that we are a reflection of Christ in everything we do.
There you have it! Not only is this a great activity for the family but it also could be used as an evangelistic tool during a Christmas party for kids!
* If you cannot find a black ornament, you can “crumble a sheet of newspaper, spray paint it black, and attach a dark string for a hanger.
** For the lamb, “copy a basic lamb shape onto poster board, cut out, and cover with cotton balls.”
*** For snowflakes, cut out paper snowflakes and sprinkle with white glitter, or make them from white chenille stems.”
Thanks to Angie from Womanhood with Purpose for featuring the Gospel Christmas Tree!