Children’s Bible Program – Level 1: Lesson 44 “Israel Wants a King”

Featured Passage: 1 Samuel 7 – 8


Samuel had been judging Israel for many years. He traveled between the cities of Bethel, Gilgal, and Mizpah to judge the people, though he lived in Ramah with his family. Samuel’s sons became judges, but they did not follow his example. They were evil in how they judged Israel, and the people were upset with how things were going. They decided they wanted to have a king to rule over them instead of a judge. Samuel tried to warn them of what would happen if they had a king, but the people would not listen, and God was preparing to let them have their way.

Discuss:

Richard Gunther (www.lambsongs.co.nz) | FreeBibleImages.org
  • Before Israel had a king, God gave Israel His laws and His judges made sure they were kept. What would change with a king? 
  • Israel was to be an example to the other nations (Deuteronomy 4:6–8). What does it mean to be an example? What is the difference between a good example and a bad example? 
  • What did God say would happen if Israel had a human king?
  • Israel rejected God as their king because they wanted a human king. They did not appreciate what God had done for them. How can we appreciate what God does for us? 

Memory Challenge:

1 Samuel 8:7 

And the Lord said to Samuel, “Heed the voice of the people in all that they say to you; for they have not rejected you, but they have rejected Me, that I should not rule over them.”


Academic Calendar

Living Education Students “Church History Timeline” project

In the Introduction to Doctrines class, one of our student groups designed a “Timeline of Church History”. To take a look at their work, just click on the link below!

“Introduction to Church History”

Location of 1st Century Judeo-Christian church (Possibly Peter’s House) | Capernaum, Israel

World Ahead – This Week

We’ve had almost thirty members express interest in participating in our Living Education Israel Dig and Tour 2020. You still have time to get involved! If you would like to learn more about the requirements and details, just go to www.lcgeducation.org, read about the program and pre-register.

This week, we’re opening registration for our Living Education-Charlotte 2020-21 program year. Living Education-Charlotte is designed as a nine-month intensive training program for young adults who are determined to build a strong foundation for a Godly life. Students gain a comprehensive overview of the Bible through a book by book review, study the fundamental Biblical doctrines that have defined the Church of God throughout history, and the basic principles that frame our Christian way of life. Each day is divided between classroom instruction and work-study within our Headquarters facility. In addition to the daily classroom instruction, students hear twice-weekly lectures on wide-ranging topics, presented by Mr. Gerald Weston, Mr. Richard Ames, Dr. Douglas Winnail, Mr. Mario Hernandez, and a bevy of other leaders, including visiting field ministers from the United States and abroad. Social opportunities to build camaraderie with other young people, field trips to interesting places in the area, and service opportunities round out the experience. If you know a young person who might be a fit for the program, encourage them to contact our admission staff for an application at [email protected]!

Children’s Bible Program – Level 3: Lesson 43 “Elisha”

Featured Passage: 2 Kings 2-7

Elijah the prophet was getting older and God decided it was time to appoint a new prophet in Israel to take his place. Under God’s instruction, Elijah went to find the man God chose and met a certain young man named Elisha plowing a field with twelve yoke of oxen! (1 Kings 19:15-21) Without delay, Elisha left his home, his family, his oxen and begin to serve and learn from Elijah in preparation for his new role as a spiritual leader in Israel. After learning what he could, the time came for Elisha to take over for Elijah. God was about to send Elijah away in a miraculous way, but the people would need to know that God was with Elisha. God had some exciting adventures planned for this courageous young leader, as well as number of miracles of his own.

Discuss: 

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  • Why do you think God wanted Elisha to spend time learning from Elijah before taking Elijah’s position?
  • Elisha performed his first miracle after Elijah his master was taken away. What was this first miracle? Why did God allow Elisha to perform miracles so soon after Elijah had gone? 
  • With God’s help, Elisha performed many miracles. Which is your favorite of the miracles he performed? Why? 
  • What are some lessons we can learn from the story of Naaman and Elisha?
  • The Syrians, enemies of Israel, wanted to capture Elisha because he had alerted the Israelites of their plans. How did Elisha’s servant respond when he woke up to see the city surrounded by the Syrian army? How did Elisha respond? What can we learn from Elisha’s example? 
  • What are some examples of Elisha’s compassion? 

Memory Challenge: 

1 Kings 2:9

And so it was, when they had crossed over, that Elijah said to Elisha, “Ask! What may I do for you, before I am taken away from you?” Elisha said, “Please let a double portion of your spirit be upon me.”


Children’s Bible Program – Level 2: Lesson 43 “God Speaks to Israel”

Featured Passage: Exodus 20

God wanted to enter into a special relationship with Israel, but they had to agree. He planned to speak the terms of the agreement to Israel directly. The most magnificent fireworks display could not compare to what the people saw, and the loudest thunder storm would diminish in comparison to what they heard that day. Could the people, sinful as they were, stand before the Creator and live? What was so important that God wanted to say it Himself? 

Discuss:

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Richard Gunther (www.lambsongs.co.nz) | FreeBibleImages.org
  • The sights and sounds were truly amazing that day. What did the people hear? What did they see? What things do you think they felt?
  • The people heard God’s voice, but they did not actually see God. Whose was the voice which they heard? 
  • Why are each of the commandments important? How do you think the world would be different if everyone kept these ten laws? 
  • The people were very afraid while God was speaking, even Moses was shaking in his sandals (Hebrews 12:18–21). How do you think we would feel if we were there?
  • In the end, the people did not want God to speak with them anymore. 

Memory Challenge: 

Exodus 20:20

And Moses said to the people, “Do not fear; for God has come to test you, and that His fear may be before you, so that you may not sin.”


Children’s Bible Program – Level 1: Lesson 43 “Samuel Judges Israel”

Featured Passage: 1 Samuel 3-4, 7

Samuel served in the temple from childhood. Under the guidance of Eli, Samuel began to learn about all the things of God. God was preparing Samuel for big responsibilities. One night, when he was still a young boy, Samuel heard someone call his name. Thinking it was Eli, he jumped out of bed and said to Eli “Here I am!” Eli hadn’t called him, but Samuel was about to find out Who wanted his attention.  And that was only the beginning of the story of how Samuel came to be a prophet and a judge over Israel.

Discuss:

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Richard Gunther (www.lambsongs.co.nz) | FreeBibleImages.org
  • Samuel had a special calling to be a prophet to Israel at a very young age. What was Samuel’s reaction when God spoke to him the first time?
  • Samuel’s first prophetic message was about Eli and his family. Why were Eli and his sons punished? 
  • What are the duties of a prophet? Why does God have prophets?
  • What are the duties of a judge?

Memory Challenge:

1 Samuel 3:10 

Now the Lord came and stood and called as at other times, “Samuel! Samuel!” And Samuel answered, “Speak, for Your servant hears.”


Second Thoughts: God Wrote a Book

Author: Thomas White | Editorial Department, Living Church of God


Mr. Gerald Weston’s recent assembly provided a fascinating “speed run” through the Old Testament, noting each book, its highlights, and the affect it has upon the overarching flow of the Bible’s storyline.

He recommended taking a “swiss cheese” approach to the Bible—accept that there are holes in your comprehension of it, but appreciate what you do know, the understanding you have been given, and use that to piece it together and grow in knowledge.

Not an Easy Read

That was encouraging to me, because it can be easy for us to feel like we’re hopelessly ignorant when it comes to the Bible. Growing up in the God’s Church, I’ve heard several people admit to being afraid to talk about the Bible with brethren, because of how “stupid” they think they’re going to sound.

I get it—I’ve felt that way, too. The Bible is a thick, complicated book, and that’s before you get into all the translation issues.

It contains seemingly countless names of people, places, and things, goes into a shocking amount of detail in some places, contains a puzzling lack of detail in others, and just when you think you’re following what’s going on, it whips out a genealogy and fast-forwards a few hundred years. The Bible is beautiful, terrifying, comforting, and confusing, and anyone who claims to have read it cover-to-cover without at least once going, “Wait, what?” is probably lying.

But how could it be anything else? God wrote a book.

Sometimes I have to let that statement sink in. The more you think about it, the more it kind of blows your mind: God, the Eternal Family who knows all that could ever possibly be known, who is intimately aware of truths no puny human brain can even begin to fathom, wrote a book explaining the deepest secrets of life, the universe, and everything—and you and I actually kind of understand it a little bit. I mean, we get the gist! Even though Isaiah and Jeremiah lose us sometimes, Paul’s run-on sentences occasionally leave us blinking perplexedly, and our brains go numb every so often from all the numbers in Numbers, we still recognize characters, principles, laws, examples, and poetry that God Himself wrote.

Grateful for the Chance to Know

That’s not a reason to brag—without God’s Holy Spirit to help, any of us might think Ezra was a name from a Star Wars episode. But if the Lord of the Universe wrote a book and has gifted us with even a cursory understanding of it, we shouldn’t feel afraid to discuss it because we’re ashamed of not knowing it better. We should feel excited to discuss it because we have the chance to know it better. And we should be incredibly grateful to our Creator for whatever knowledge we have of the most important thing ever written.

Truly knowing the mind of God is just about the entire purpose of human life, so we should probably expect it to take a lifetime. Don’t be discouraged by what you don’t know. Be encouraged by what you can know—already, you probably know more than you think.


Children’s Bible Program – Level 3: Lesson 42 “Elijah”

Featured Passage: 1 Kings 17-19

Ahab became king of Israel, and he followed in the footsteps of his wicked ancestor, Jeroboam. He also married Jezebel, a Phoenician Princess of neighboring Sidon, and daughter of King Ethbaal. Not only was she a princess, but she was a High Priestess of Baal worship. Ahab, with wicked Jezebel at his side, did more to provoke God to anger than all the kings before him. Together, they made a powerful and evil pair, luring Israel into wholesale Baal worship.

But the prophet Elijah was determined to defend against this unholy duo. His courage in defying Jezebel, Ahab, and all their cohorts was honored by God with miracles and signs that proved that God was still in charge, even during these dark days in the land of Israel.

Discuss:  

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  • Elijah knew God was with him. What were some of the miracles God performed to protect Elijah from Ahab and Jezebel?
  • Did Elijah do as God told him even though he was afraid? Someone once said that courage is not the absence of fear; it is action in the face of fear.
  • There was a great famine in the land because God withheld the rain for a long time. How did God provide food for Elijah when he was staying with the widow and her son?
  • How did Elijah survive when he was hiding from the king? What does that tell us about God’s ability to help us in the time of our need?
  • Elijah invited the prophets of Baal to a showdown on Mount Carmel to prove who was the true God. How did God show the people that He is the only true God and that Baal and Asherah were just false, powerless idols?

Memorization Challenge: 

1 Kings 18:21 

“And Elijah came to all the people, and said, ‘How long will you falter between two opinions? If the Lord is God, follow Him; but if Baal, follow him.’ But the people answered him not a word.”


Children’s Bible Program – Level 2: Lesson 42 “Israel Prepares to Meet God”

Featured Passage: Exodus 19

When Moses and the children of Israel left Egypt, they began their journey toward Mt. Sinai just as God had instructed (Exodus 3:12). They arrived at Mt. Sinai, the mountain of God, a few weeks after departing Egypt. God announced to Moses that He would speak to the Israelites from a thick cloud around the mountain. But they were required to prepare themselves. What did the Israelites need to do to prepare to meet God? Would they finally see the God who delivered them from the most powerful nation on the earth?

Discuss:

Richard Gunther (www.lambsongs.co.nz) | FreeBibleImages.org
  • God proposed a covenant with Israel. What does it mean to be in a covenant?
  • There was a lot of excitement in the camp with the anticipation of meeting the Creator. How would we feel if we had the opportunity to meet God like the Israelites did?
  • Why did the Israelites have to clean-up before meeting God? Why do we wear our best clothes to Sabbath services?
  • In what ways was God’s presence announced to Israel? How did God get the attention of the people?
  • What were some of the conditions of God’s covenant with Israel?

Memory Challenge:

Exodus 19:5–6

Now therefore, if you will indeed obey My voice and keep My covenant, then you shall be a special treasure to Me above all people; for all the earth is Mine. And you shall be to Me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.