VERSES: Exodus 4:1-31
MEMORY VERSE: Exodus 4:3 "...and he cast it on the ground, and it became a serpent, and Moses fled from it."
BOOK TO REMEMBER: Ezekiel. Write "Ezekiel" on slips of paper and hand out to the students at the end of class..
PRAYER: Pray that we will always do the Lord's work whether we are old or young. We should always be ready to work for God!
SPECIAL SONG: "Be Patient And Kind" (see April - Lesson - Joseph Meets His Brothers Who Hated Him)
VISUAL AID: Moses' Rod and Plastic Toy Snake (see below under Activity)
- Remember last week when God wanted Moses to go back to Egypt and deliver the children of Israel from slavery? When we left Moses last week, Moses had not agreed to go; in fact, Moses was not too sure that he wanted to go back all that way to Egypt. He had two arguments for not wanting to go back to Egypt. He asked God, "What happens if the people do not believe me or listen to me? What if they don't believe that you appeared to me?" Do we know how God appeared to Moses? That's right! The burning bush! Moses didn't know if the people would believe that God had appeared to him in the burning bush. God gave Moses two signs to prove to the people that God was sending Moses to help them:
- God asked Moses what was in his hand. Moses said that he had his rod, his shepherd's crook, in his hand. Shepherds used their rods to help the sheep get out of difficult places. Sometimes sheep would fall into cracks in the rocks or tumble down a small cliff and couldn't get out by themselves. The shepherd would then reach down with his rod and lift the stranded sheep up and out of the hard spot. This kind of rod is what Moses had in his hand. God said to throw the rod down on the ground and when Moses threw it down...it tuned into a snake! When Moses saw the snake, he ran away from it! Then God told Moses to reach down and grab the snake by its tail and when Moses caught it, it became a rod again in his hand! Can we do that? No. This was a miracle or something that only God could do! God wanted the people to believe that the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob had appeared to Moses and by turning Moses' rod into a snake, the people would know that God had sent Moses to them.
- In the Old Testament times, there was a dreaded disease or sickness called leprosy. Leprosy made people's skin turn very white and have sores on it. There wasn't any cure or any medicine for leprosy back then. There are a few cases of leprosy today, but certainly not as many as there were back then. God told Moses to put his hand into his cloak and when he took his hand out, his hand had leprosy all over over it! It was as white as snow! When Moses put his hand back into his cloak and took it out again, his hand was normal again! God told him that if the people didn't believe Moses with the first sign, then maybe they would believe the second sign.
- Moses then mentioned to God that he was not a n eloquent man or someone who could speak well. Moses said he was slow of speech. God answered Moses, "Who made your mouth? I will be with your mouth and I will teach you what to say." But Moses said, "Please send someone else." God was getting angry with Moses, so He said, "Is not Aaron the Levite your brother? I know he can speak well. I also know that when he sees you, he will be happy to see you. I will speak to you, you speak to him, and he can speak to whom I tell you to speak. You take your rod and you do the signs that I showed you!"
- So Moses went back to Jethro, his father-in-law, and said, "Let me go back to Egypt and see my brothers and see if they are still alive." Jethro let him leave and take his wife and children back to Egypt.
- God also spoke to Aaron, Moses' brother, and told him to go into the wilderness and meet Moses. Aaron went into the wilderness and met Moses and hugged and kissed him and was very happy to see him. Moses told Aaron everything that God had told him to do. Moses and Aaron called together all the elders of the children of Israel and Aaron spoke all the words that Moses had told him to say to the elders. Moses performed the signs-throwing the rod down and it turning into a snake and putting his hand in his cloak and it becoming as white as snow with leprosy and the people believed. When the people heard that the LORD had visited the children of Israel, they bowed their heads and worshiped God.
- So, did Moses go back to Egypt like God wanted him to go? YES! Moses obeyed God. Next time, we will see who Moses and Aaron talks to next.
- God can see in each of His children 'potential' or what they are capable of being or becoming. God knows what WE are capable of becoming! Sometimes we don't see the good qualities in ourselves, but God knows what we can become just like He knew Moses' potential. We just need to trust God and take advantage of every opportunity as it comes our way.
- Interesting facts about leprosy:
- The number of new cases reported around the world in 2012 was 232,857 (http://www.who.int/lep/en/).
- There is medication today that will help leprosy. In the Old Testament times, there was no medicine. Usually, people would go away from their families and friends and live by themselves or with other people who had leprosy.
- Moses traveled over 200 miles back to Egypt to talk to Pharaoh just like God wanted him to do. That's a lot of miles!
ACTIVITY: Moses' Rod And Plastic Toy Snakes
Materials needed: 3 feet or less of brown butcher paper, one toy snake (I bought mine at the Dollar Store six for one dollar), tape, crayons.
- Roll butcher paper in one long roll and twist, forming a 'rod.'
- Tape to secure rod and it will not come apart. Just an inch or two of tape will do the job.
- Write "Moses' Rod" and "Exodus 4:3, 4" on the rod.
- Pass out plastic snakes. Let the students take a plastic snake home to practice throwing the rod (gently) on the ground and it 'turning' into a snake.