This years camp meeting falls in the centennial year of my conference, so there's going to be lots of heritage stuff going on, so for the Juniors (they put me in charge again) we're planning to do an Adventist pioneers theme. We'll tell them stories about James White and Joseph Bates, play old-time games, and generally try to instill in them a sense of where they come from and where they're going as Adventist Christians. I think it's super important for them to hear the stories of intense Bible study, devotion to God's will, and miracles that form our denominational identity.
This is where it gets tricky, because you can't really talk about Adventist heritage without talking about the Great Disappointment. And you can't really talk about the Great Disappointment without getting into the 2300-day prophecy. And if you introduce the 2300-day prophecy then you've got to tackle the rest of the sanctuary message.
So this is the challenge I've set for myself and the two other getting-less-wet-behind-the-ears pastors I'm working with: to teach a bunch of 10-12 year-olds the symbolism of the tabernacle, the time prophecies of Daniel, and the investigative judgment. The other guys think I'm slightly nuts; I think I'm slightly nuts. But I have this strong conviction that if you can't teach a doctrine to kids you probably shouldn't be teaching it at all.
So I guess I'm putting Fundamental Belief 24 to the test as much as myself, but I believe that it can be done. My plan is to focus on the atoning (covering) aspects of judgment using the vision in Zechariah 3 as the central text. Then I hope to show what this doctrine says about God's love for them and how they can love Him back.
What do you think; am I on the right track? How have you handled this topic with kids? What have you found to work?