This activity goes along with day twelve of The Living Christ: An Easter Countdown.
When Mr. Ferrero Rocher was a missionary he used labeled cups to teach about the apostasy and restoration of the gospel. I have seen other versions but none as detailed as his. He still uses them to teach people! I know the youth loved it when he taught them about the apostasy at a Bishop’s Youth discussion.We made our own set for our activity today.
The labels for each cup not only tells what was part of Christ’s original church but also has scripture references for each one right from the bible. The labels with each of the original apostles also tells how they died. All were martyred except for John who we believe “did not die (John 21:20-23), but has been allowed to remain on the earth as a ministering servant until the time of the Lord’s second coming.” (Bible Dictionary)
34 small bath cups
Apostasy Cups PDF file This has all the labels for the cups as well as an explanation of how to teach the apostasy using the cups.
Print off the pdf file. Cut out each label (on page 2) and tape it to a small cup. Number the top of each cup with the corresponding number.
To teach about the apostasy build a foundation with #1 – #14 (two rows of seven cups side by side). Just say the names of the apostles as you build the foundation. How they died will be discussed later.
1. JESUS CHRIST (Eph. 2:19-20)
2. PROPHETS (Eph. 4:11) Continuous Revelation (Amos 3:7)
3. APOSTLES (Eph. 4:11) PETER was crucified head down in Rome, 66 AD
4. ANDREW was crucified on a cross. Preached until his death 2 days later, 74 AD
5. JAMES, son of Zebedee, was beheaded in Jerusalem by the sword. (Acts 12: 1-9)
6. JOHN was banished to the Isle of Patmos 96 AD (Rev. 1:9)
7. PHILLIP was crucified at Heirapole Phryga, 52 AD
8. BARTHOLOMEW flayed to death by a whip. 52 AD
9. THOMAS was run through by a lance at Corehandal, East Indies 52 AD
10. MATTHEW was slain by the sword in Ethiopia about 60 AD
11. JAMES, son of Alphaeus, was thrown from the pinnacle of the temple then beaten to death, 60 AD
12. THADDAEUS was shot to death by arrows 72 AD
13. SIMON was crucified in Persia 74 AD
14. JUDAS ISCARIOT committed suicide by hanging himself 34 AD (Acts 1:18)
MATTHIAS replaced Judas Iscariot (Acts 1:26) and was stoned and Beheaded in Ethiopia 70 AD
This is the foundation of Jesus Christ, the apostles and prophets.
The rest of the tower is built as you talk about each of the other things that were a part of the original church. 2nd row: #15 – #20 balanced down the middle of the foundation rows.
15. MEN CALLED OF GOD “as was Aaron” (Heb 5:4) (John 15:16)
16. A LAY CLERGY (Matt. 10:8)
17. DEACONS (Phil. 1:1)
18. TEACHERS (Eph. 4:11)
19. PRIESTS (Acts 6:7 Luke 1:8)
20. BISHOPS (Phil 1:1)
Build upon each previous row as follows – 3rd row: #21 – #25 balanced on top of row 2. 4th row: #26 – #29. 5th row: #30 – 32. 6th row: #33 – #34 until the tower is completed.
21. ELDERS (Acts 14:23)
22. SEVENTIES (Luke 10:1)
23. HIGH PRIESTS (Heb 5:1)
24. EVANGELISTS or PATRIARCHS(Eph. 4:11)
25. MEMBERS CALLED SAINTS (Eph. 2:19)
26. NAME OF THE CHURCH the Church of Jesus Christ (1 Cor. 1:9-15)
27. BELIEF IN A PERSONAL GODHEAD(Heb. 1:1-3 Matt. 28:19)
28. FAITH (Heb 11:1-6)
29. REPENTANCE (Acts 2:38)
30. BAPTISM BY IMMERSION (Matt. 3:16)
31. GIFT OF THE HOLY GHOST (Acts 2:38) GIFTS OF THE SPIRIT (1 Cor. 12)
32. KEEP THE SABBATH DAY HOLY(Gen. 2:2 Ex. 20:8)
33. ADDITIONAL SCRIPTURE (Ezek. 37:16-17)
34. BAPTISM FOR THE DEAD (1 Cor. 15:29)
Talk about how Jesus Christ died but gave the priesthood keys to his apostles to carry on His work. Then talk about each of the apostles’ deaths, carefully taking that cup away from the foundation to show how priesthood authority was also eventually taken away from the earth. You will only be able to do a few of the apostles before the whole tower comes falling down. This shows how the apostasy came to be.
For Younger children: Take about the restoration and how Jesus Christ (cup #1) and Heavenly Father appeared to Joseph Smith (cup #2). Then 12 apostles were called (cups #2 – #14). Slowly build the tower up again just as before talking about how each of those things that were a part of the original church were restored to the earth.
For Older Children, Teens and Adults: Discuss how and why some of the different Christian religions were started (churches #1 – #8 in the pdf file). With each church discussed, just take three of the cups and build a small tower with two cups on the bottom and one on top to show how each church had some truth but not ALL of the truths as the original church had. Then build the tower as described for younger children.
Various Christian Churches’ Beginnings
1. ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH
Founded in 1054 after a split between Eastern and Western Christian churches.
Reason: Acknowledgement by the Western Church of the primacy of the Bishop of Rome.
Main Tenet: Belief in the Nicene Creed (AD 325) and that the pope is the successor of the apostle Peter.
2. LUTHERAN CHURCH
Protestant denomination, founded on the beliefs of Martin Luther in 1526 as a breakaway group from the Roman Catholic Church.
Reason: Denied the supremacy of the pope.
Main Tenet: People can be saved only by faith in Jesus Christ – rather than through good works.
3. CHURCH OF ENGLAND
Founded by King Henry VIII in 1534 as a breakaway group from tht eRoman Catholic Church.
Reason: Henry refused to recognize the authority of the pope who would not dissolve his marriage to Catherine of Aragon.
Main Tenet: Belief in the Nicene Creed (AD 325) and bishops independent of Rome.
4. PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH
Protestant denomination, founded on the beliefs of John Calvin in 1560 as a breakaway group from the Roman Catholic Church.
Reason: Congregations should be governed by boards of elders and not a pope.
Main Tenet: Bible is the final authority, and local lay elders govern the church.
5. BAPTIST CHURCH
Protestant denomination founded by John Smyth in 1611 as a breakaway group from the Church of England.
Reason: Opposed baptism of infants.
Main Tenet: Baptism should be by immersion following voluntary declaration of faith in Jesus Christ as Savior.
6. METHODIST CHURCH
Protestant denomination founded by John Wesley in 1784 as a breakaway group from the Church of England.
Reason: Anglican clergy opposed Methodist lay preachers.
Main Tenet: Live a disciplined Christian life according to the method laid out in the Bible.
7. SEVENTH-DAY ADVENTIST CHURCH
Founded on the beliefs of William Miller in 1863 as a breakaway group from the Baptist Church.
Reason: Sabbath should be on the seventh day (Saturday)
Main Tenet: Observe the Sabbath on Saturday, and Christ will return in person in latter-days.
8. PENTECOSTAL CHURCH
Protestant denomination founded by Charles Fox Parham in 1901.
Reason: Religious revival required before end of world.
Main Tenet: Christians should experience baptism in the Holy Spirit, manifested by the speaking in tongues and other gifts of the spirit.