“The Power of Influence”
Matthew 7:15-20 (page 901)
Reality #1: Beware of the influences around me. (Matthew 7:15)
Reality #2: Always examine the influences in my life. (Matthew 7:16-18, 20)
1) The fruit of my life reveals the source of my life. (Galatians 5:19-24)
2) Choose carefully who and what influences you. (Matthew 7:19-20, John 15:1-8)
DISCUSSION POINTS for STUDENTS and ADULTS
1. Where do most people get their information or source of truth? Where do you get your information?
2. How do you discern the difference between God’s truth and false teaching? (Galations 5:19-21)
3. How can you protect yourself against false teaching? (Matthew 7:15-20, 2 Timothy 3:16)
Activity: Pick a favorite song, TV show, or movie. Discuss the difference between God’s truths and false truths found in your favorite song, TV show, or movie.
DISCUSSION for KIDS (infant – 5th grade)
A Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing
Matthew 7:15 – “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but in-wardly they are ravenous wolves.”
(Also read Matthew 7:15-23)
Are you familiar with the story of Little Red Riding Hood? You remember how the Big Bad Wolf wanted to gobble up Little Red Riding Hood, so he dressed up like her grandmother and hid. Of course, he wanted Little Red Riding Hood to think that he was her grandmother so that he could surprise her. But when she came in, she noticed that something just wasn’t quite right. Grandma’s eyes were so much bigger than usual, her ears were a lot bigger, and her teeth were a lot bigger too. It was then that she realized this wasn’t her grandma at all, it was the Wolf! So she took off running.
False teachers are a lot like that wolf and Jesus said that we as Christians are like sheep. One of the interesting things about sheep is that they are pretty helpless. They can be attacked very easily. So whenever a wolf (false teacher) wants to attack the sheep they will try to dress up like a sheep and make all of the sheep think that they are one of them. But inside, they are really a ravenous (hungry) wolf.
Just like Little Red Riding Hood, we too can notice some differences in these wolves that can’t be hidden no matter how hard they try. Jesus called it fruit. He said that you can’t get grapes from a thorn bush, and it’s the same way with these wolves. Their lives will produce bad fruit and we can know them if they say one thing and do an-other. Good fruit can only come from those who truly belong to Jesus. You can find a comparison of bad fruit with good fruit in Galatians 5:19-25. So watch out for wolves in sheep’s clothing!
1. What will wolves try to do to get at the sheep?
2. How can we tell the difference between a real sheep and a wolf dressed up in sheepâ€™s clothing?
3. What should we do when we run into one of these wolves?
Kid’s Bible Dictionary
Ravenous Wolves: False teachers who want to try to hurt the sheep.
Sheep: Godâ€™s children, Christians.
Kid’s Activity: Find the Wolf among the Sheep in the graphic below.