Edited: My complete study can be found here.
Christmas is one of my favorite teaching times of the year. The children sense the specialness of the season making them more attune to what I try to teach them about Christ and Christmas. Our ‘normal’ school is abandoned for “Christmas School.”
I love creating unit studies about the religious and secular themes of Christmas. One of our yearly favorites covers the names Jesus is given in the scriptures. We learn a new name each day and post that name on a board (this year it’s a window) around a picture we display of Christ.
Jesus is known by so many names (over two hundred!) that we do not cover every name every year. Each name helps us remember what Jesus has done for us and helps us to remember Him in special ways. It’s a great way to start off the school day as each lesson is more like a devotional. Here is our schedule for this week. All words in bold are the names we add to our display.
Day 2: Anointed One – read about it in the Bible Dictionary here. Messiah – also read in the Bible Dictionary here. These readings help us learn that Anointed One, Messiah and Christ all mean the same thing. They just come from different origins – Greek, Hebrew, and Aramaic.
Day 3: Only Begotten Son – Jesus Christ is the divine Son of God, the first born to our Heavenly Father in the spirit and the Only Begotten in the flesh.
For the little ones we’ll just read the scriptures. Then we’ll discuss the quotes with the older children.
Elder James E. Talmage of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles explained: “That Child to be born of Mary was begotten of Elohim, the Eternal Father, not in violation of natural law but in accordance with a higher manifestation thereof; and the offspring from that association of supreme sanctity, celestial Sireship, and pure though mortal maternity, was of right to be called the ‘Son of the Highest.’ In His nature would be combined the powers of Godhood with the capacity and possibilities of mortality; and this through the ordinary operation of the fundamental law of heredity, declared of God, demonstrated by science, and admitted by philosophy, that living beings shall propagate—after their kind. The Child Jesus was to inherit the physical, mental, and spiritual traits, tendencies, and powers that characterized His parents—one immortal and glorified—God, the other human—woman.” (James E. Talmage, Jesus the Christ, 3rd ed. (1973), 81)
President Ezra Taft Benson added his witness in these words: “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints proclaims that Jesus Christ is the Son of God in the most literal sense. The body in which He performed His mission in the flesh was sired by that same Holy Being we worship as God, our Eternal Father. Jesus was not the son of Joseph, nor was He begotten by the Holy Ghost. He is the Son of the Eternal Father!” (Ezra Taft Benson, Come unto Christ (1983), 4)
Day 4: Creator – The Gospel of John proclaims that Christ is the Creator of all things: “All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made” (John 1:3)
Hebrews 1: 1-2 “God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds.”
Day 5: Exemplar – Jesus Christ set the example for us to follow how to live our lives.
I will let you know when I add each subsequent weeks’ names and scripture references.