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Children’s Bible Program – Level 3: Lesson 28 “Samuel – The Last Judge”

Read Together: Samuel had an uncommonly fascinating beginning.  Hannah was childless. In her sorrow, she prayed to God for a child, vowing that she would dedicate him to God. God heard her prayer and Samuel was born. When Samuel was weaned, his mother took him to live and serve in the tabernacle with Eli the priest. God spoke to Samuel while he was yet a child, and it became clear that God had chosen Samuel to be a prophet. After Eli’s death, Samuel judged throughout the land of Israel. When Samuel grew old, he appointed his sons as judges to assist him. But his sons were evil, and did not follow in his footsteps. The people revolted against Samuel, and demanded a king. This was disconcerting to Samuel after all his years of faithful service, but God reassured him. The truth was that they had rejected God – not Samuel.  With God’s approval, Samuel anointed two kings of Israel—Saul and David. It was Samuel’s leadership that helped Israel transition from a theocracy that was managed by judges under God to one in which the people were subjects of a king. Samuel, the last judge of Israel, lived in very exciting times, and his story is recorded in the Scriptures, waiting to inspire you.

Richard Gunther (www.lambsongs.con.nz) | FreeBibleImages.org

Read Together: 1 Samuel 1–10;16:1–13; 25:1.

Discuss:

  • What might it have been like for Samuel to grow up serving in the tabernacle from the time he was about four years old? God can use people no matter their age if they are willing to serve. What are some ways you might be able to serve in the congregation?
  • The sons of Eli and Samuel had great opportunities because of their fathers, but they threw them away. Explain to your child that they also have great opportunities as a young person in God’s Church.
  • Even though Israel demanded a king, God chose who would be king. There was no voting. This may be a good opportunity to discuss different forms of human government and how they differ from God’s form of government.
  • Samuel lived in very exciting times. As you read through the entire book of 1 Samuel, have your child identify their favorite scene, character, and miracle in the book.

Review Memorization:

Judges 21:25  “In those days there was no king in Israel; everyone did what was right in his own eyes.”

Children’s Bible Program – Level 2: Lesson 28 “Israel Returns Home”

Richard Gunther (www.lambsongs.con.nz) | FreeBibleImages.org

Read Together: For many years, Jacob worked for his Uncle Laban, but he was not happy. Sensing his discontent, Laban agreed to give some of his sheep to Jacob in payment for his labor. Before long, Jacob’s flocks thrived, and he began to become very wealthy.

Now it was Laban’s turn to be unhappy. As his jealousy and envy deepened, Jacob knew it was time for his family to escape. While Laban was gone, Jacob and all his family made their getaway. Ten days later, Laban and his relatives caught up. What happened? You’ll have to read the story! Don’t worry…they parted ways and no-one was harmed.

But just when Jacob thought things were going better, he found out that his brother Esau was headed his way…with four hundred men! Remember Esau? He was Jacob’s brother. The last thing we heard from him was a promise that he would kill the brother who took his blessing. Things did not look good for Jacob and his family!

Thankfully, things did eventually take a turn for the better for Jacob. He survived yet another hostile encounter, and lived a long and prosperous life, as he passed on God’s promise to Abraham to his twelve sons.

To find out how Jacob survived these adventures, and also wrestled with God, read the chapters below! Oh, and did I mention, he also wrestled with God!

Read Together:  Genesis 30-35

Discuss:

  • Ask your child why they think Jacob left Padan Aram in secret. How does Proverbs 22:3 apply to what Jacob did? How does this principle apply today?
  • Remind your child that Jacob left Canaan with next to nothing, but he returned a wealthy man. Explain that Jacob’s wealth was a result of God’s blessings.
  • Help your child see that God names things what they are. Jacob was no longer the schemer he had been, and his new name, Israel, better reflected his new character. Note the humility Jacob expressed when he met his brother Esau.
  • Explain to your child that the promise of national prominence and great riches were passed down from Abraham to Isaac, and from Isaac to Jacob who became Israel. The nation of Israel is named for this patriarch.

Review Memorization:

Genesis 32:28  “And He said, ‘Your name shall no longer be called Jacob, but Israel, for you have struggled with God and with men, and have prevailed.’”

Children’s Bible Program – Level 1: Lesson 28 “Abraham—The Father of the Faithful”

Richard Gunther (www.lambsongs.con.nz) | FreeBibleImages.org

Read Together:  Time after time God intervened to protect and care for Abraham and Sarah. They knew that they could completely trust God. But then God asked a very strange thing of Abraham. God told Abraham to sacrifice Isaac on Mount Moriah. God had never asked anything like this before of anybody! Even though it must have been very difficult and confusing for Abraham, he knew that he must obey God. Abraham set out early the next morning to do what God said. Isaac allowed himself to be tied up, and Abraham placed his son on the altar. Just as he was preparing to sacrifice his son, an angel from God stopped him. At that moment, God knew that Abraham would obey and trust him above all, even with the life of his own son, Isaac. Since that time, God has never asked such a great sacrifice of any man. As the story ends, God miraculously provides a different sacrifice, and it was waiting right behind him!

When we read about the life Abraham, it’s no wonder that he is known as the “father of the faithful”.

Read Together:   Genesis 22:1–18; Romans 4:16; James 2:23.

Discuss:

  • Share with your child some of the dangerous situations from which God delivered Abraham. Talk about the time when Abraham rescued Lot and all the people of Sodom and Gomorrah. These things helped to deepen Abraham’s faith in God.
  • Explain to your child that the phrase “practice makes perfect” applies to our faith as well.  When we depend on God for the little things, we develop more faith to trust Him for the bigger things.
  • Help your child to understand that we can be God’s friend by obeying Him. Every Christian who puts their faith in God is following the example of Abraham. This is why Abraham is called the “father of the faithful.”

Review Memorization:

Genesis 22:18  “In your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, because you have obeyed My voice.”

Children’s Bible Program – Level 3: Lesson 27 “Gideon”

Read Together: When we read about Gideon in the book of Judges, we see that, once again, the children of Israel were in trouble. Year after year, the Midianites swarmed across the land of Israel. These nomadic people would set up their camps, allowing their camels and livestock to roam over the land, eating all the crops of the Israelites, leaving nothing. The children of Israel were left with no food for themselves. They hid in caves to escape the Midianites, with no food and no hope. Finally, they cried out to God to deliver them. The story of what happened next is one of the most amazing stories of bravery in the whole book of Judges. God used Gideon and 300 men to save Israel from the Midianite hordes. Read on to learn how!

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Read Together:  Judges 6-8

Discuss:

  • Did Gideon blame God for Israel’s problems (Judges 6:13)? Explain that people often blame God, but it is usually because of sin that bad things happen. To help illustrate this point, you may want to select an appropriate news story and discuss how the calamity is a result of sin.
  • God does not leave people unaware of their sins and its consequences (Judges 6:8–10). Why did God allow the Midianites to terrorize Israel? Discuss the Church’s role in warning modern day Israel.
  • Why did God have Gideon send all but 300 warriors home?
  • Discuss with your child how Gideon tested God. God was very patient with Gideon by doing as he asked in order to help Gideon to trust Him.
  • The people wanted to make Gideon their king. What was Gideon’s response?

Review Memorization:

Judges 21:25  “In those days there was no king in Israel; everyone did what was right in his own eyes.”

Children’s Bible Program – Level 2: Lesson 27 “Jacob’s Wives and Sons”

Read Together: Jacob arrived in Padan Aram, and began looking for his uncle Laban. Instead, he met Laban’s beautiful daughter, Rachel. Jacob fell in love with Rachel and desperately wanted her as his wife. Laban agreed to give her in marriage to Jacob. But, in return, he demanded that Jacob work for him for seven years. Jacob agreed and served Laban, tending his flocks. When the time for the wedding came, Laban prepared a feast. At the end of the feast, when it was finally time for Jacob to be with beautiful Rachel, Laban tricked him! Instead of Rachel, Laban presented Leah, the older sister, to Jacob. Jacob was furious! He had married the wrong woman! Devious Laban suggested a solution. If only Jacob would work for another seven years for him, he would let him marry Rachel too! Reluctantly, Jacob agreed. But having two wives caused lots of problems for years to come. Jacob continued working for Laban for many years. He eventually became father to eleven sons and one daughter. As he grew older, he finally decided it was time to take his growing family and move back to Canaan.

Richard Gunther (www.lambsongs.con.nz) | FreeBibleImages.org

Read Together:  Genesis 29; 30:1–27

Discuss:

  • Ask your child how they think Jacob felt to be tricked by his uncle. What lessons do you think he might have learned?
  • Help your child to recall the names of Jacob’s sons.
  • Names have meanings. Discuss with your child the meaning of the names given Jacob’s sons. Give a hint of how some of the names portray their future roles. Explain how your child was named and its meaning.
  • Remind your child that God’s intent is for marriage to be between one man and one woman. Jacob’s example shows that anything else causes problems.

Review Memorization:

Genesis 27:29 “Let peoples serve you, and nations bow down to you. Be master over your brethren and let your mother’s sons bow down to you. Cursed be everyone who curses you, and blessed be those who bless you.”

Bonus Memory Verse! Genesis 29:20 “So Jacob served seven years for Rachel, and they seemed only a few days to him because of the love he had for her.”


Children’s Bible Program – Level 1: Lesson 27 “Abraham and Sarah Have a Son”

Read Together:  Abraham and Sarah were very sad that they had no children. God had promised Abraham that he would be the father of many nations, and that his descendants would be as numerous as the sand on the seashore. Yet Abraham and Sarah were old—too old to have children. Even so, Abraham and Sarah believed God would keep His promises, and He did. When Sarah was 90 years old and Abraham was 100, Sarah gave birth to a little baby boy! They named him Isaac as God instructed. After waiting 25 years, their promised son had finally arrived. You can imagine how happy they were to meet their new baby!

Richard Gunther (www.lambsongs.con.nz) | FreeBibleImages.org

Read Together: Genesis 17-21 (Read selections as desired)

Discuss:

  • Ask your child if it is easy to wait on something that you want badly. Can they think of anything they really want but haven’t received as yet? Help them to imagine how Abraham and Sarah might have felt waiting for a child to be born.
  • Help your child to understand that God does things when it is the right time to do them. We have to learn to be patient and wait for God to fulfill His promises just as Abraham and Sarah waited.
  • Ask your child what they think Isaac was like since his name meant laughter.
  • Explain to your child that Abraham had other children, but only Isaac was the son that God promised. Though the other children received different gifts and blessings, God told Abraham that He would pass on His covenant through Isaac.

Review Memorization:

Genesis 22:18  “In your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, because you have obeyed My voice.”

Children’s Bible Program – Level 3: Lesson 26 “Deborah the Prophetess – Judge of Israel”

Read Together:  In Judges 4, we read that God chose a woman, Deborah, to judge Israel for a period of time. She was well prepared when God called her to be a prophetess and a judge because she knew God’s laws and was wise in their execution.  God told Deborah to send for Barak and tell him to fight against their oppressors – Jabin, king of Canaan and Sisera, the commander of his army. Barak responded that he would only go if Deborah went with him. Though Deborah knew women did not normally fight in war she agreed to go, but Barak would have to sacrifice the glory of the victory to a woman. God gave them the battle plan which they executed with precision. Barak along with ten thousand troops from Napthali and Zebulun soon had Sisera and his troops on the run. They killed them all, but Sisera escaped from the battle to the tent of Jael, a woman whom he thought was an ally. While Sisera slept, she drove a tent peg through his head, and Jael became the heroine of the battle instead of Barak just as Deborah had said. This marked the end of Jabin’s oppression, and Israel had peace for forty years. Yet after all this, Israel again turned to her evil ways.

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Read Together:  Judges 4:1 – 6:1

Discuss:

  • Discuss with your child the role of a prophet(ess) and the role of a judge.  What is the role of women in the Church government structure? (See Ephesians 4:11.)
  • Speculate with your child why God might have called a woman to judge Israel at that time.  Perhaps she was the best qualified. Remember, God is not a respecter of persons (Romans 2:11).
  • Point out to your child that Deborah is not the only prophetess referred to in the scriptures(See Exodus 15:20; 2 Kings 22:14; Isaiah 8:3; Luke 2:36).
  • Ask your child why they feel Barak wanted Deborah to go with him to war. Was Barak’s bravery in question? Remember, Barak is listed in the faith chapter of Hebrews 11
  • Explain to your child that those born into the family of God are neither male nor female (Galatians 3:28).  Everyone will have equal opportunity to serve in the Kingdom of God and and be rewarded based on your works (Matthew 16:27).

Review Memorization:

Judges 21:25  “In those days there was no king in Israel; everyone did what was right in his own eyes.”

Children’s Bible Program – Level 2: Lesson 26 “Jacob Flees to Padan Aram”

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Read Together:  Esau despised Jacob for tricking him, and Rebekah, their mother, discovered his plot to kill him. Rebekah advised Jacob to go to her brother Laban’s home and stay there until Esau had calmed down. Now Isaac and Rebekah were not pleased that Esau had taken Hittite women as wives, so Isaac told Jacob to take a wife from his uncle’s daughters in Padan Aram. Jacob set out from Canaan to the land of Haran with nothing but his staff. On his way, Jacob stopped for the night, and he had a very strange dream while sleeping under the stars. He dreamed there was a ladder that reached from heaven to the earth with angels going up and down. God spoke to him in the dream and gave Jacob the same promises that He had made to Abraham and Isaac. God promised to give him the land of Canaan and to multiply his descendants.  God promised to be with him and to bring him back safely to the land. Jacob was filled with awe! He anointed the stone where he slept and called the place Bethel, which means house of God. For his part of the covenant, Jacob promised to obey God and to tithe to Him. Jacob completed his journey, arriving at his uncle Laban’s home in Padan Aram.

Read Together:  Genesis 27:41-46; 28:1-22; 29:1-13

Discuss:

  • Esau was very angry with Jacob and thought to kill him.  Discuss with your child how thoughts become actions, and we must learn to control our thoughts.  One strategy is to replace bad thoughts with good ones; we can also pray for anyone we may have bad thoughts about. How could Esau apply this?
  • Explain to your child that most dreams do not have any meaning; they are just dreams. Jacob’s dream was special and God caused him to understand that.
  • Discuss with your child what a tithe is.
  • Remind your child that Haran is the place where Abraham and Sarah lived before their sojourn in Canaan; it is near modern day Syria. Laban was Rebekah’s brother, but he was also the son of Abraham’s nephew Bethuel.
  • Point out to your child that Bethel is an important place in biblical history and that we will hear more of it in future Bible studies.

Review Memorization:

Genesis 27:29 “Let peoples serve you, and nations bow down to you. Be master over your brethren and let your mother’s sons bow down to you. Cursed be everyone who curses you, and blessed be those who bless you.”

Children’s Bible Program – Level 1: Lesson 26 “God’s Promises to Abraham”

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Read Together: God had promised to make Abram a great nation and that all the nations of the earth would be blessed through him. God showed Abram all the land of Canaan and promised it to his descendants. Abram had wandered throughout the land for 24 years, and now he was 99 years old. God had promised that his descendants would be as numerous as the dust on the earth, but Abram still did not have any children. It was at this time that God appeared to Abram and made even greater promises. He told Abram that he was going to make him a father of many nations and that some of his descendants would be kings. Even though they had no children, he and his wife had faith that God would keep His promise.

Read Together: Genesis 12:1-3; 17:1-16

Discuss:

  • Explain to your child what a descendant is.  Give an example by tracing your lineage and showing that it extends to your child.  Help them to understand that many people today are Abraham’s descendants.
  • Explain to your child that Abraham means father of a multitude or father of nations, and that Sarah means mother of nations. God names things what they are and the new names reflected that God’s promises are true.
  • Talk with your child about how Abraham was still hopeful even though many years had passed since God made the promises. Be sure to emphasize that God cannot lie and His word is true, and that Abraham understood this.

Review Memorization:

Genesis 22:18  “In your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, because you have obeyed My voice.”

Children’s Bible Program – Level 3: Lesson 25 “The Time of the Judges”

by Janth English

Read Together: God chose Moses to bring Israel out of Egyptian slavery and to the Promised Land. He then chose Joshua to lead the people into that land and divide their inheritance among the tribes. God chose judges, or leaders, to teach the people His laws and to judge matters that came up according to those laws. Israel was obedient to God for as long as Joshua and the elders that he trained lived. However, after the generation who saw God’s works in the wilderness died, the people began to turn away from God. They wanted to be like the peoples around them, copying their ways and customs. To punish the Israelites for their disobedience, God sent these nations against them. Time after time, Israel suffered under the cruel hand of their enemies. When they cried out to God for relief, he mercifully sent a judge to save them. After a few years of peace, Israel would forget the God who saved them and return to their foreign idols. Again, God would remove His protection and the neighboring nations would invade the land of Israel. For many generations, the people of Israel followed their own rebellious heart, doing what was right in their own eyes.  

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Read Together:  Exodus 3:6-10; Deuteronomy 31:7; 1 Samuel 12:12; Judges 2:6-23, 21:25

Discuss:  

  • Discuss with your child God’s criteria for leadership positions (See Exodus 18:21 and Titus 1:7-8). God’s standards have not changed, and they will not change. Remind your child that they are training now for future leadership positions.
  • Discuss with your child Israel’s desire to be like the people around them.  Do we sometimes fall into the same trap? What was the result for Israel? What would be the result for us if we do the same thing?
  • Point out to your child how God showed mercy to Israel time and again.  Help them to see that God’s mercy is forever.
  • Discuss with your child the consequences of everyone doing what they think is right. What happens when my thoughts and your thoughts are not in agreement? What happens in society when there are no absolute standards?

Review Memorization.

Judges 21:25 “In those days there was no king in Israel; everyone did what was right in his own eyes.”