As students join the group time, hand each student a paper and pencil or pen. Ask students to number their papers from 1-5. Explain that they are going to take a quick quiz. They are to write B next to the number if they think it is a statement that is a “believable fact” and U next to the number if they believe it is an “unbelievable fact.”
When all students are ready with their papers numbered and have their pencil or pen in hand, recite the following five statements, pausing after each one to give students time to write a “B” for believable or a “U” for unbelievable. Do not read the answers to the quiz until all the statements have been given to and judged by the students.
- “Eggs should NOT be stored in the special egg-shaped shelf in the refrigerator.”
Side refrigerator shelves do not keep a consistent and cool temperature and are better suited for non-perishable items, so fact number one is “believable.”
- “Nintendo, the legendary video game company, was founded in 1889.”
Nintendo dates back to the 19th century and started as a popular card game company, so fact number two is “believable.”
- “Anne Frank, Martin Luther King Jr., and Barbara Walters were all born the same year.”
Anne Frank, Martin Luther King Jr., and Barbara Walters were all born in 1929, so fact number three is believable.
- “Up until 2014, dolphins were a trained part of the US Navy military branch.”
The US Navy retired their use of dolphins to detect mines in 2014 and now use robotic devices instead, so fact number four is believable.
- “Cheetahs can’t roar; they can only purr like a housecat.”
Cheetahs, unlike other big cats, do not have a device in their throats that expands to allow roaring, so purring is all that they are able to do, thus fact number five is believable.
After students have finished rating the facts presented as believable or unbelievable, inform them that all of the facts were true and give them the explanation behind each truth. Ask students if it’s difficult for them to believe that all of the facts presented were believable. Share that they definitely were true facts, believable or not! If they want to check sources, the websites where these facts were found are listed below.
Some things we see and hear are hard to believe; it’s hard to know if they are true or not. There’s a technology being perfected that could make it even harder to believe things we see and hear. People are sometimes skeptical about stories written down, but if they can see a person say something or watch a news or video clip of that person saying something, that is all the evidence they need to believe it is true. But this new technology dispels that whole area of thought. What we’ll discover in this clip is that what you see is not always what is real!
Invite students to watch the following video clip [5:40].
How Digital Avatars Could Be the Future of Fake News | WIRED
We need to be careful to discern what is true from what is not true. Having watched this video, we may be skeptical the next time we watch a video on the Internet…and that’s OK!
- What interested you the most about this video? (Answers will vary. Invite various students to share.)
- Why might a video found on the Internet that you watch in the future turn out to be misleading and contain falsehoods? (According to this video, the technology is changing in such a way that when you watch a person talking in a video about something, you may have to question if that is truly him or her speaking. You also may need to question if the words you heard were actually spoken by that person or if an actor put those words in this person’s mouth.)
Today we’ll delve into the idea of faith and what we are called upon to believe. Let’s find out more.
Egg Storage, Freshness & Food Safety
17 facts that sound fake but are totally true
Looking for Steps 2 & 3?
You can find Steps 2 and 3 in your teacher’s guide; your Step 4 appears below. To purchase a teacher's guide, please visit: Bible-in-Life or Echoes
When God seemed slow to answer His promise that Abram would be the father of all nations and have many descendants, Abram believed his offspring would come from his servant, not that his wife Sarai would become pregnant in her old age. When God restated that Abram would indeed become a father through Sarai, Abram believed God and this belief was credited to him as righteousness. God calls us to believe in Him.
Invite students who want to share with the group to explain, one at a time, why they believe in God. Spend a few minutes doing this; make sure everyone who wants to share has a chance to do so.
Believing what God says to us today means spending time in the Bible so we can know what God says to us through His Word. Have students divide into pairs and talk among themselves about if and how they make a Bible time work in their day-to-day lives and schedules. When students have done this, have them discuss and answer the question, “How does knowing what God says in His Word strengthen your belief in Him?” Give students a few minutes to ask and answer this question in pairs.
In today’s “fake news” world where we aren’t always sure we are being fed the truth from the media, online sites, or—as we saw earlier in the video—falsely manipulated images, the best way to believe God and know what He says to us is through the Bible. Encourage students to use the paper and pencils or pens provided to make a plan for this week’s personal Bible time and study of God’s Word. Ask:
- How believable is God and His Word? (Answers will vary. Most students will say they believe God’s Word to be true and use it as the source of truth in their lives.)
Believing in God is an act of faith and comes by God’s grace. Have a volunteer read Ephesians 2:8-9. It is not from ourselves; it is the gift of God. Ask students who may not know if they believe in God to consider staying after the group time for further discussion. Use page 99 of the teacher’s guide or commentary to help you share God’s plan of salvation with your students.
Challenge your students to make a list this week of things they believe to be true about God, and things they find difficult to believe. Encourage them to spend time in the Word looking at verses that would verify or disclaim items on their list. Ask them to bring their lists in next week so that they can share what they’ve discovered.
Close in prayer encouraging your students to believe in God. Pray God will use this belief in their lives to do great things for His kingdom.
(David C Cook is not affiliated with and does not endorse any website or any other media listed on these pages. At the time of writing, David C Cook editors carefully review the referenced material and non-referenced web page content. However, due to the nature of the Internet, non-cited content on the website [including pop-ups, links, and ads] changes frequently and is beyond our control. Please review carefully before showing links in the classroom.)