Faithfulness, courage and loyalty to God in the face of dangerous opposition form the thematic backbone of the Bible story of Daniel and the lions' den. When Bible lessons call for covering this well-known episode, bring the point home with crafts that encourage children to develop the same character traits that Daniel displayed in trusting God no matter what happened. Take-home Daniel and the lions' den crafts serve as a perpetual reminder to apply the lesson on a daily basis with family and friends.
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Prayer and Loyalty
When King Darius ordered that no one could pray to any god except him on penalty of death in the lions' den, Daniel heeded the Lord's command: "You shall have no other gods before me," (Exodus 20:3) and continued to pray openly three times a day as was his habit. God rewarded his faithfulness and loyalty as he will anyone who trusts in Him. Encourage children to establish a prayer habit like Daniel's by letting them make their own personal prayer mats. Give each child a square or rectangular carpet sample. Let him write his name on it in puffy paint and decorate it with scriptures or drawings. After it dries, he can take it home and choose a special prayer place where he can kneel on his mat and "pray and give thanks to God" just like Daniel.
When the king ordered that Daniel be thrown into a den of hungry lions, all rational logic would conclude that his fate was to be devoured by these wild animals. God had other plans because of Daniel's faithfulness. Edible lions can help children remember that God is still working for good, even when all seems lost. Give each child a frosted cupcake and let her trim the outside edge with caramel corn as the lion's mane. Use raisins or chocolate chips and thin strips of black liquorice or black decorating gel to make the eyes, nose and mouth. Say a prayer thanking God for helping us in times of trouble, then eat up.
When a worried King Darius called out to inquire whether God had delivered Daniel, Daniel answered back that his God had sent an angel to shut the lions' mouths so they could not harm him. Each child can make his own representation of a guardian angel to remind himself that God is with him when he feels scared and alone or unfairly accused like Daniel. Drape a tissue or piece of tulle over a cotton ball and tie it off with a gold ribbon or pipe cleaner. Form a small piece of the same into a round halo and glue it to the head. Cut wings out of yellow felt or stiff gold cloth and glue to the angel's back. Draw a face with a permanent marker. Alternatively, use wiggly eyes. Run a long piece of gold ribbon or yellow yarn through the necktie and tie off the ends to wear the angel as a pendant. Another option is to make several and string them as a garland decoration.
Lion Scripture Mobile
A scripture mobile can help remind children of key verses and concepts in the Daniel 6 story. Make a template of a lion outline or use the printable one at MSSS Crafts. Run it off on yellow and orange cardstock or construction paper. Alternatively, you can trace it several times on yellow or orange craft foam. Cut out the shapes and punch a hole near the top centre of the head. Write key verses on each lion, text on one side, reference on the other, such as Daniel 6:16, 16:22 to 23 and 16:26-27. Bind craft sticks, straws, chopsticks or dowels in a cross shape and tie a hanger around the centre; or use an old hanger. Tie each scripture lion at different heights from the support and display as a reminder of "the living God and enduring forever" as King Darius decrees in the end.
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