Free Bible Lesson for Preteens: Is Satan Real?
Published: July 6, 2022
Preteens today are aware of evil. All they have to do is watch the news or go online to see the most recent tragedy. This lesson can help temper the fear that comes with knowing that evil exists. Being aware of Satan and his tactics can help kids avoid evil when possible and face it with God’s help when necessary. Use this lesson to assure your preteens that they can rely on God’s victorious power in their lives.
Bible Background for Leaders
Bible Truth: God is all-powerful. (1 Chronicles 29:11)
“He has always hated the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, it is consistent with his character; for he is a liar and the father of lies.” (John 8:44)
Who is Satan?
Satan in action.
Pray for Your Preteens
Talking about Satan may bring out some fear-based feelings in your preteens. This week pray that your kids will rely on God’s power in their lives, and that he’ll help them have peace and joy in this troubled world.
- hidden pictures and Where’s Waldo? books
- whiteboard or poster board
Greet preteens warmly as they arrive. Have healthy snack stuff on a table.
Supply hidden picture pages and Where’s Waldo? books. Encourage them to work together to see how many hidden pictures or Waldos they can find.
As you’re ready to move on, move the snacks and pictures out of sight.
Preteens are notoriously insecure and uncertain, no matter how hard they try to hide it. Providing a simple activity that harks back to an earlier time in their development, such as finding hidden pictures, offers preteens an almost surefire way to succeed and fit in—and have fun doing it! Throw in a little sincere praise and encouragement, and you’ve created a congenial atmosphere where learning can happen naturally.
Ask a willing reader to read aloud these BE BOLD Values:
- You’re accepted just as you are.
- We respect each other’s thoughts and struggles.
- We’re all in this together.
- God is here, ready to be your friend because you matter.
Say: I’m glad you’re here, and I’m glad we get to follow these values together. I want our class to be a place of respect—a place to honestly say what we think and feel, and a place where we can learn from each other. Thank you for making it that way!
Say: You know, I was watching, and you were pretty good at finding those hidden pictures! Just as in hidden pictures, sometimes a thing can be right there in plain sight, but we don’t see it at first. Today we’re going to explore a topic that might seem sort of hidden—people don’t talk about it a lot. We’ll be talking about Satan. And I’m sure you must have questions about Satan, just like I do.
One of my questions is…
Briefly write a question about Satan on the whiteboard.
Say: Now it’s your turn. What are your questions about Satan? Tell me and I’ll write them, or feel free to come up and write your question yourself.
Gather kids’ questions on the board. Be sure to have enough markers so preteens can write their own questions.
Say: Thanks for sharing your questions. I’m glad we’re all in this together! Today let’s look at one question in particular: Is Satan real? And if he is, what does that mean for us?
Some Christians don’t believe that Satan is real—they believe that Satan is just a symbol of evil. However, in this lesson we’ll be taking the stance that Satan is real and active in our world.
Say: I think we can all agree that the subject of Satan is kind of creepy and maybe even a little scary. But I want to tell you something upfront—and this is important, so please listen—God is all-powerful. More powerful than anything else. Anything else! And God is on our side. So we don’t have to be afraid of Satan. But we do need to be aware, because like our hidden pictures, things aren’t always what they seem.
I think the best thing to do is turn to our ultimate source of truth—God’s Word! Good idea? Let’s see what the Bible has to say about Satan.
Question of the Week
Have preteens form trios. Distribute page 33 from the Bold Action Student Book to each person.
Who Is Satan?
Say: In your trio, you’ll be reading a few passages that will give us clues about who Satan is.
Let me give you a little background for the first passage. Jesus had sent out his disciples to teach people about God. Let’s see what they said when they reported back to Jesus. Choose someone in your trio to read aloud passage 1. Allow time.
- What clues does this passage give us about Satan? Let kids call out answers.
Say: Well, from this passage we learned that Satan used to be in heaven, because Jesus saw him fall from heaven. And we saw that Jesus’ name is more powerful than demons.
Let’s see what other clues we can find. Have another person in your group read aloud passage 2. This verse doesn’t mention Satan by name, but refers to him by nicknames, including “shining star” and “son of the morning.” Allow time.
- What more can we learn about Satan from this passage? Let kids call out answers.
Say: Again, we see that Satan was thrown down from heaven. But this time we find out why! Satan tried to set himself up as higher than God. He didn’t want to worship God—he wanted to be God! But God is all-powerful, and he wasn’t about to put up with Satan. When Satan tried to place himself higher than God, he was thrown out of heaven.
Let’s look at one more passage. Have the next person in your group read aloud passage 3. Allow time.
- What do you take away from this passage? Let kids call out answers.
Say: Yup, Satan is a liar. In fact, he’s the father of lies! That’s how he operates.
Discuss Satan’s Tricks
- Why do you think people believe Satan’s lies?
Say: Satan is a liar—a very sneaky liar. He makes doing wrong things sound so innocent, so easy. He can even make doing wrong sound right!
But there are ways to keep from being tricked by Satan.
When Satan tried to trick Jesus, Jesus used Scripture to stay true to God. We can do the same thing. God is all-powerful, and we can use his Word to stand up to Satan.
But we do have to be on guard. Satan can make his temptations sound reasonable and good. Let’s play a game that can help explain what I mean. In this game, listen for who’s telling you the truth or leading you off course.
Hot or Cold?
Say: Let’s play a game of Hot or Cold? Remember that game? One person is “It.” Then It tries to find an object by listening to everyone else yell hot or cold. “Hot” means It is getting closer to the object, and “cold” means the opposite.
So first, I need a volunteer to be It. Choose a volunteer to be It. Have It stand in a corner of the room, facing the walls. Have It close his or her eyes. Silently hold up or point to an object in the room that you’ll hide and It will attempt to find.
Have everyone else huddle around you at the other end of the room as you whisper the following instructions. Say that half of your preteens will play the game in the regular way, with “hot” meaning that It is getting closer to the object, and “cold” meaning It is getting farther away. The rest of the kids will play as if “hot” means It is getting farther away from the object, and “cold” means It is getting closer. Make sure kids know which half they’re in.
When everyone understands the instructions, have kids spread out around the room mixing up players. Have It turn around, open their eyes, and begin to play.
Encourage players to call out hints to It loudly and often. Call time after about two minutes or if It correctly guesses the object. Play a few more rounds, choosing a new It and object each round. Then invite your preteens to sit.
Discuss Who to Trust
- If you were It, what was it like to hear so many conflicting hints?
- If you weren’t It, what was it like calling out conflicting hints?
- When is a time you received conflicting advice in a situation? How did you decide what to do? Have kids talk in pairs or trios.
Say: It’s not always easy to know what to do in real life, especially when you’re not sure who to trust. One thing I’ve learned is that you can always trust God because God is all-powerful. And you can always trust God’s Word. Open your Bible to Psalm 119:105. Listen to how the Bible describes God’s Word: “Your word is a lamp to guide my feet and a light for my path.”
I love that. God’s Word can light our way and keep us close to him. Satan prefers darkness and lies. But we can stay in God’s love and light.
Pray: God, thank you for your power and your light. Thank you for giving us your Word. Thank you for showing us who Satan really is. And thank you for giving us ways to stand up to him. Thank you for always, always loving us. In Jesus’ name, amen.
Have kids stand in a circle with their hands in the center, like a sports team. Tell them that when you finish the Bold Blessing, they’ll raise their hands and shout “Let’s be bold!”
Say this Bold Blessing: Receive this Bold Blessing and carry it with you this week: May you be bold as you resist Satan’s lies. Stand firm in your faith. Use God’s Word. And shine God’s light in the world around you. Let’s be bold!
These activities were taken from Group’s Be Bold Sunday School curriculum for preteens. For the whole lesson and more great activities that tackle tough topics, click here!
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