Today we had our Truth Treasure Hunt about the Hindu holiday of Holi. The kids LOVED it!
Here was the plan:
Do you know God loves you very much? He loves you so much that He made a special promise to you.
There are some things God’s Word commands us to stay away from because He loves us. Sometimes we think we miss out on something fun when we are trying to obey God, but when we obey He promises to bless us with something better… and better for us.
Let’s start off this Truth Treasure Hunt with the meal that starts off each day… BREAKFAST! Let’s play Breakfast Scramble.
Put the cereal box puzzle together, tape it, and you will get your next clue.
Written on the back of the cereal box puzzles:
In the fridge… four balloons... one with a clue inside. The other three with blank papers.
Glad you found the next clue. In the Bible, you can find the answers to everything you need to know. One question you may have is “Should Christians celebrate Holi? Isn’t it just harmless fun?” Let’s start in the Bible, and find out what it says. Read 1 Thessalonians 5:21-22.
We need to prove or test all things, and hold on to the good things… get rid of the bad! When we abstain, it means to stay away from it. Anything that looks evil and sinful, we should not do it.
But what about Holi?
Let’s play another game. Grab the balloons you found. Your goal is to keep the balloons off the floor for 30 seconds. Work as a team! Remember to be an encourager. It’s a game. When you have succeeded, you can pop the balloons to look for you next clue.
In the balloon…
A metal box with numbers is usually the norm,
This thing helps us get our food nice and warm
Inside the microwave, baskets and balls…
You found another one! Good job! We know we should stay away from things that are evil or appear evil. We know God will bless us when we obey. But is Holi really evil?
Let’s keep looking in the Bible first…
One day the children of Israel decided to participate in a fun festival centered around a false god. Let’s read the story:
Exo 32:1-24 And when the people saw that Moses delayed to come down out of the mount, the people gathered themselves together unto Aaron, and said unto him, Up, make us gods, which shall go before us; for as for this Moses, the man that brought us up out of the land of Egypt, we wot not what is become of him. And Aaron said unto them, Break off the golden earrings, which are in the ears of your wives, of your sons, and of your daughters, and bring them unto me. And all the people brake off the golden earrings which were in their ears, and brought them unto Aaron. And he received them at their hand, and fashioned it with a graving tool, after he had made it a molten calf: and they said, These be thy gods, O Israel, which brought thee up out of the land of Egypt. And when Aaron saw it, he built an altar before it; and Aaron made proclamation, and said, To morrow is a feast to the LORD. And they rose up early on the morrow, and offered burnt offerings, and brought peace offerings; and the people sat down to eat and to drink, and rose up to play. And the LORD said unto Moses, Go, get thee down; for thy people, which thou broughtest out of the land of Egypt, have corrupted themselves: They have turned aside quickly out of the way which I commanded them: they have made them a molten calf, and have worshipped it, and have sacrificed thereunto, and said, These be thy gods, O Israel, which have brought thee up out of the land of Egypt. And the LORD said unto Moses, I have seen this people, and, behold, it is a stiffnecked people: Now therefore let me alone, that my wrath may wax hot against them, and that I may consume them: and I will make of thee a great nation. And Moses besought the LORD his God, and said, LORD, why doth thy wrath wax hot against thy people, which thou hast brought forth out of the land of Egypt with great power, and with a mighty hand? Wherefore should the Egyptians speak, and say, For mischief did he bring them out, to slay them in the mountains, and to consume them from the face of the earth? Turn from thy fierce wrath, and repent of this evil against thy people. Remember Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, thy servants, to whom thou swarest by thine own self, and saidst unto them, I will multiply your seed as the stars of heaven, and all this land that I have spoken of will I give unto your seed, and they shall inherit it for ever. And the LORD repented of the evil which he thought to do unto his people. And Moses turned, and went down from the mount, and the two tables of the testimony were in his hand: the tables were written on both their sides; on the one side and on the other were they written. And the tables were the work of God, and the writing was the writing of God, graven upon the tables. And when Joshua heard the noise of the people as they shouted, he said unto Moses, There is a noise of war in the camp. And he said, It is not the voice of them that shout for mastery, neither is it the voice of them that cry for being overcome: but the noise of them that sing do I hear. And it came to pass, as soon as he came nigh unto the camp, that he saw the calf, and the dancing: and Moses' anger waxed hot, and he cast the tables out of his hands, and brake them beneath the mount. And he took the calf which they had made, and burnt it in the fire, and ground it to powder, and strawed it upon the water, and made the children of Israel drink of it. And Moses said unto Aaron, What did this people unto thee, that thou hast brought so great a sin upon them? And Aaron said, Let not the anger of my lord wax hot: thou knowest the people, that they are set on mischief. For they said unto me, Make us gods, which shall go before us: for as for this Moses, the man that brought us up out of the land of Egypt, we wot not what is become of him. And I said unto them, Whosoever hath any gold, let them break it off. So they gave it me: then I cast it into the fire, and there came out this calf.
The people were having so much fun at their festival, but did God take it lightly? Was it fun in His eyes?
Some things may look like fun, but they are dangerous to us as God’s children. Let’s play a game that is fun, but isn’t dangerous.
Strap the “bucket” you found on your head and be a bucket head! You must toss three balls successfully in the buckets, one on each head from 5 feet away from your siblings. Don’t forget to toss one in your own bucket without touching the bucket. It must be a toss! When everyone completes this, you may retrieve the next clue out of the buckets.
In the buckets…
In the piano, chopsticks and different items to be picked up by the chopsticks, along with cups or bowls…
What does God say about worshiping other gods?
Exo 20:3-6 Thou shalt have no other gods before me. Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments.
What does this have to do with Holi? What exactly is Holi?
The meaning of the word Holi is burning. This is why the festival week often includes bon fires. Why fire???
Holi is the celebration of a legend of a demon king named Hiranyakashyhap. This demon king wanted everyone to worship only him. But his own son, Prahlad, was a faithful devotee of Lord Naarayana. The Demon king commanded his wicked sister, Holika, to hold Prahlad in her lap as she passed through a burning blaze. She had a special power that kept her from being hurt by fire, but she did not know that the power was only effective if she entered the fire alone. She was destroyed. Prahlad was kept safe by Lord Naarayana because of his faithful devotion. Holi is the celebration of the destruction of wicked Holika and the salvation of Prahlad.
Let’s play another game… You will need the chopsticks and items provided. Your goal is to get the items in a bowl using only the chopsticks. When you each complete your task, you may retrieve the clue from the bottom of the bowl.
On the cup/bowl…
You'll find a clue with tools used to eat
Hurry now your hunt is almost complete.
In the silverware drawer….
Do you see how they are celebrating a false god? Do you see how they say works will save you? Do you see how they say you can escape the fire? Do you see how wicked all of this is?
Let’s read a story about people being thrown in a fire… a TRUE story.
Dan 3:1-30 Nebuchadnezzar the king made an image of gold, whose height was threescore cubits, and the breadth thereof six cubits: he set it up in the plain of Dura, in the province of Babylon. Then Nebuchadnezzar the king sent to gather together the princes, the governors, and the captains, the judges, the treasurers, the counsellors, the sheriffs, and all the rulers of the provinces, to come to the dedication of the image which Nebuchadnezzar the king had set up. Then the princes, the governors, and captains, the judges, the treasurers, the counsellors, the sheriffs, and all the rulers of the provinces, were gathered together unto the dedication of the image that Nebuchadnezzar the king had set up; and they stood before the image that Nebuchadnezzar had set up. Then an herald cried aloud, To you it is commanded, O people, nations, and languages, That at what time ye hear the sound of the cornet, flute, harp, sackbut, psaltery, dulcimer, and all kinds of musick, ye fall down and worship the golden image that Nebuchadnezzar the king hath set up: And whoso falleth not down and worshippeth shall the same hour be cast into the midst of a burning fiery furnace. Therefore at that time, when all the people heard the sound of the cornet, flute, harp, sackbut, psaltery, and all kinds of musick, all the people, the nations, and the languages, fell down and worshipped the golden image that Nebuchadnezzar the king had set up. Wherefore at that time certain Chaldeans came near, and accused the Jews. They spake and said to the king Nebuchadnezzar, O king, live for ever. Thou, O king, hast made a decree, that every man that shall hear the sound of the cornet, flute, harp, sackbut, psaltery, and dulcimer, and all kinds of musick, shall fall down and worship the golden image: And whoso falleth not down and worshippeth, that he should be cast into the midst of a burning fiery furnace. There are certain Jews whom thou hast set over the affairs of the province of Babylon, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego; these men, O king, have not regarded thee: they serve not thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up. Then Nebuchadnezzar in his rage and fury commanded to bring Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. Then they brought these men before the king. Nebuchadnezzar spake and said unto them, Is it true, O Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, do not ye serve my gods, nor worship the golden image which I have set up? Now if ye be ready that at what time ye hear the sound of the cornet, flute, harp, sackbut, psaltery, and dulcimer, and all kinds of musick, ye fall down and worship the image which I have made; well: but if ye worship not, ye shall be cast the same hour into the midst of a burning fiery furnace; and who is that God that shall deliver you out of my hands? Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, answered and said to the king, O Nebuchadnezzar, we are not careful to answer thee in this matter. If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king. But if not, be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up. Then was Nebuchadnezzar full of fury, and the form of his visage was changed against Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego: therefore he spake, and commanded that they should heat the furnace one seven times more than it was wont to be heated. And he commanded the most mighty men that were in his army to bind Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, and to cast them into the burning fiery furnace. Then these men were bound in their coats, their hosen, and their hats, and their other garments, and were cast into the midst of the burning fiery furnace. Therefore because the king's commandment was urgent, and the furnace exceeding hot, the flame of the fire slew those men that took up Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. And these three men, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, fell down bound into the midst of the burning fiery furnace. Then Nebuchadnezzar the king was astonied, and rose up in haste, and spake, and said unto his counsellors, Did not we cast three men bound into the midst of the fire? They answered and said unto the king, True, O king. He answered and said, Lo, I see four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire, and they have no hurt; and the form of the fourth is like the Son of God. Then Nebuchadnezzar came near to the mouth of the burning fiery furnace, and spake, and said, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, ye servants of the most high God, come forth, and come hither. Then Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, came forth of the midst of the fire. And the princes, governors, and captains, and the king's counsellors, being gathered together, saw these men, upon whose bodies the fire had no power, nor was an hair of their head singed, neither were their coats changed, nor the smell of fire had passed on them. Then Nebuchadnezzar spake, and said, Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, who hath sent his angel, and delivered his servants that trusted in him, and have changed the king's word, and yielded their bodies, that they might not serve nor worship any god, except their own God. Therefore I make a decree, That every people, nation, and language, which speak any thing amiss against the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, shall be cut in pieces, and their houses shall be made a dunghill: because there is no other God that can deliver after this sort. Then the king promoted Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, in the province of Babylon.
What differences do you see in these two stories?
How can people be rescued from the fire of judgment to come?
Now, where do the colors and water throwing come from in Holi?
Holi is also a celebration of Lord Krishna. The legend says that when he was a baby, a demon poisoned him with her milk. His skin turned blue. When Krishna grew up, he fell in love with Radha. He was afraid she could never love him because of his skin color. Krishna’s mother then tells Krishna to approach Radha, and color her face any color he desired. They then became a couple. This tradition became part of Holi, and Holi is now the celebration of love and the arrival of Spring. It is supposed to be a time of purging of past errors… That’s where the water throwing comes in. Water is a cleaning agent and they think it truly purges sin and impurities. This is why they sometimes bathe in their holy rivers. Works to cleanse from past sin.
That is Holi… and it is anything BUT holy! Water cannot cleanse us from sin. Our works cannot save us from sin. Playful fun is tarnished by idolatry. And celebrating these demons in any form is offensive to our Holy God who sent His Son to die for us. Our God does expect us to worship Him and Him alone, but He is not wicked like the demon King. He is not spiteful. He is not sinful.
Today, our family chooses to celebrate Christ and Him alone. We have been washed in something more precious than water… the only thing that cleanses sin… Christ’s blood.
One last game and clue… then your prize awaits!
Let’s get colorful… God created colors and they are meant to be enjoyed in view of HIS creative ability. Separate the candies into the cups according to color! You have two minutes!
Prizes at the end!