Teens can use games to learn the Bible. If your competitive teen doesn’t do well in the game, he’s motivated to study the Bible to improve his odds of winning. Your teen also learns from other players while playing the game and improves his cooperative skills by combining his knowledge and abilities with teammates. Those benefits can motivate you to play Bible games on family night with your teen.
When your teen gets together with Christian friends, you could encourage the teens to form teams to play games such as Bible charades, Bible trivia, and Bible matching and identification games. These games require preparation if you don’t buy the board game versions. Make a list of common Bible stories, characters and familiar verses for your game. Teams can demonstrate characteristics of or stories about a familiar character, such as Absalom’s long hair, Solomon’s strength, David’s dancing or Jesus walking on water. The lists you make could apply to various games, depending on whether you act out information, draw it on a white board, match a Bible character to the spouse or drop identifying clues until the other team guesses the correct answer or time runs out.
Your teen doesn’t need team members to play Bible games. She can unscramble Bible verses, solve a code to reveal the verse, fill in squares in a Bible crossword or find crucial words in a word search puzzle. If your teen enjoys computer and online games, she can play free games on BigLightGames.com, Christianity.com or BibleStudyGames.com. Your teen can use the solo game options to improve her Bible knowledge so she performs better on Bible games played at church.
Many church youth groups use sword drills to motivate youth to study and learn to navigate the Bible. The game leader calls out a Bible reference and game participants rush to be the first to find the verse. Sword drills can also have participants identify the Bible reference after the leader recites or reads the scripture. The game is not usually played as a team sport -- each participant competes against all other participants.
If your teen and his friends prefer active games, you can accommodate that. Give your teen a list of Bible verses and have him find the items in a scavenger hunt. For example, he could find a lamp for Luke 11:33 or a seed for Luke 13:19. In a relay-type race, team members run down a race course, correctly arrange cards to display a Bible verse, before returning to teammates so the next teammate can repeat the process with a different verse.
Rev. Kathryn Rateliff Barr has taught birth, parenting, vaccinations and alternative medicine classes since 1994. She is a pastoral family counselor and has parented birth, step, adopted and foster children. She holds bachelor's degrees in English and history from Centenary College of Louisiana. Studies include midwifery, naturopathy and other alternative therapies.