Its that time of year again. The days are long, the heat is scorching, and churches all around the nation are preparing for Vacation Bible School. Next week Hopewell Baptist will gather every night for our Amazing Wonders Aviation Bible School. Children from all over the neighborhood will be flocking to the church to engage in crafts, games, and Bible Study. Christian parents are excited about the opportunity for their little ones to be involved in a solid week of Bible Study. Non-Christian parents are excited for other reasons…like week’s worth of free baby-sitting.
Whatever the reason may be, parents will be sending kids into our building. During this time the church has both an incredible opportunity and a sobering mandate. Everything the church does must be driven by Jesus’ commision to the church to make disciples of all nations (Matt. 28:19-20). This is ultimately why VBS exists. The world may think that VBS is about crafts and games. The church knows better. Vacation Bible School is missions. The reason VBS exists is to spread the fame of God’s name by preaching the Gospel to lost little boys and girls and their parents. VBS is not the end. It is a means to an end. The end is glorifying God through missions. That’s why VBS exists. It is an avenue for Gospel preaching.
Every child who attends VBS is made in the image of God. But tragically every child is also a shattered image. They fell in their father Adam (Romans 5:12-21). They have inherited a corrupt and sinful nature. They were born in their sin (Psalm 51) and even now, if they have not turned to Christ, they are in rebellion against God. The Gospel is the only thing that can turn their little hearts from satisfaction in sin to satisfaction in God. Only in the clear message that Christ has lived the life we could not and died the death that we deserved and rose again triuimphant is their hope for these little sinners. They desperately need to repent of their sin and put their trust in Christ.
Our mission at VBS is to faithfully communicate that message. It’s not enough to get children in the building. People don’t catch the gospel the way they catch a cold. We must challenge them with the Gospel, call them to repentance, and invite them to believe in the Lord Jesus. VBS is exciting because missions is exciting. Let’s make disciples…even of the smallest among us.