VERSES: Exodus 14:1-15:1
MEMORY VERSE: Exodus 14:29 "But the children of Israel walked upon dry land in the midst of the sea..."
BOOK TO REMEMBER: Haggai. Write "Haggai" on small slips of paper and hand out to students at the end of class. Just a couple more books and we are through the Old Testament! How are the students doing?
PRAYER: God is an great God! There is none like Him! He has power over all things, even the seas. May we always love Him and His Word!
SPECIAL SONG: The Wise Man Built His House Upon A Rock (see March - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #3) and Be Patient And Kind (see April - Lesson - Joseph Meets His Brothers Who Hated Him.)
VISUAL AID: TV Box (see February - Visual Aid #1)
- Do we remember how God was leading His people out of Egypt? That's right! By a cloud in the daytime and by a pillar of fire at night to give them light. Was this a small group of people? NO! There were 600,000 men and that did not include the women and children. That's a lot of people! How did they travel? They walked and walked and walked even the little children walked. It was a very long way.
- Finally, God talked to Moses and told him to camp between a city called Migdol and the Red Sea. God told Moses that Pharaoh was going to harden his heart again and wonder why in the world he let the people go and he would follow the people to make them return. God said that the Egyptians would truly know the He was the LORD God by what He was going to do. The people obeyed God and camped by the sea.
- It was true. Pharaoh changed his mind again and got his 600 best chariots ready and all the chariots of Egypt ready and put captains over them. Pharaoh was doing the best he could to get the children of Israel back, but the Bible says that the children of Israel went out with a "high hand", meaning God's people had the advantage since God was on their side.
- So Pharaoh's army chased God's people with all of their horses and chariots and almost caught up with them. When Pharaoh and his great company got closer, the children of Israel looked up and saw that the Egyptians were marching after them and driving their chariots after them! The people were very afraid and cried out to God. They complained and cried to Moses and said they had been OK being slaves in Egypt, at least they would not have died in the wilderness if they were still slaves. Can you imagine that? God had delivered the people from slavery through Moses and now they are complaining and wished they were back in Egypt making brick without straw again and having a very hard life!
- But Moses said to stand still and see the salvation of the Lord. He said that the LORD would fight for them and that they should be quiet. The LORD never likes complaining. (Phil. 2:14). God asked Moses why were the people crying to Him? He told Moses to lead the people forward, to lift up his rod and stretch out his hand over the sea and divide it. The children of Israel would walk across the middle of the sea on dry ground and He said that Pharaoh would follow them.
- So the angel of God that had been before the people in a cloud went behind them and stayed between the people and the army, giving light to God's people, but darkness to Pharaoh's army. Amazing! God's people could see through the night, but Pharaoh's army was in total darkness and stayed away from God's people all night! God protected His people, didn't He?
- Moses then stretched out his hand over the sea and the LORD caused the sea to go back by a strong east wind all night! The children of Israel walked right through the sea on dry ground just like God had said! On one side of them was a HUGE wall of water and on the other side of them there was a HUGE wall of water. The Egyptians continued coming after the people, chasing them right through the sea! All of them--Pharaoh's chariots and horses and horsemen!
- In the morning, when the LORD looked through the pillar of fire and the cloud and saw that all of Pharaoh's army were right behind the people, He troubled the Egyptians. They were driving their chariots so fast and so hard that their wheels came off in the middle of the sea! When the army realized that God was fighting for His people, they said, "Let's get out of here! The LORD God is fighting against us!" and turned to go back to the other side of the sea. But...it was too late! God told Moses to stretch out his hand again over the sea and what do you think happened? Let's turn our Bibles to Exodus 14:27, 28 and read for ourselves what happened. (Read verses.) Let's put our bookmarks right here. What happened? That's right! The waters came crashing back on the army and covered the chariots and horsemen and all of the army of Pharaoh. Not one of them lived.
- But, God's people--every one of them--had walked through the Red Sea on dry land and the waters had been just like walls to them on both sides! Everywhere they looked there were dead Egyptians on the sea shore. The LORD had saved Israel that day from Pharaoh and his army. They would not need to fear Pharaoh anymore! Egypt had learned that the LORD God was truly greater than all of their little gods that were made out of stone and wood. God was the greatest God! So, when the children of Israel saw the wonders that God did to the Egyptians, what do you think the people did? That's right! They feared the LORD and believed the LORD and His servant Moses. Next time we will talk about what happened on the other side of the Red Sea.
"Older Student" Tips:
- Was it unusual that the ground was dry when Moses divided the sea? YES! It should have been very muddy, but God worked a miracle and, not only parted the Red sea, but had the people walk on DRY ground! We couldn't do that, but God can...and did!
- Was the Red Sea really a red color? No. That was just the name of the sea.
- Discuss Philippians 2:14. Do we complain like the Israelites did?
Materials needed for each child: A box (does not need to be too big), confetti or many, many paper-punched holes (I used the punched out snippits of a book binding machine), a piece of tan or brown paper, two toilet paper rolls, 10" of blue butcher paper, three cotton balls, cellophane (I used bubble wrap), 1/2" square piece of white or tan paper, glue, scissors, crayon or marker.
- Hand out a small box to each child. This is the foundation of the "Red Sea" scene.
- Cut off lid of box.
- Glue tan or brown paper to fit the bottom of the box. This is the dry land.
- Cover two toilet paper rolls with blue butcher paper, stuffing the ends inside the rolls. These are the rolled back waves of the Red Sea.
- Tape extra 3" x 3" blue paper to toilet paper roll, so it looks like the waves of the sea.
- Tape each paper roll to each side of the box, using a rolled piece of tape on the bottom of each. A small piece will do. Just so the paper roll doesn't roll around in the box.
- Stretch out each of the three cotton balls and glue to the back of the box. (see picture above. This is the cloud.
- Glue either cellophane paper or orange-marker-colored bubble wrap on top of the cloud. This is the pillar of fire. (Remember the cloud was in the back by the Egyptians and the pillar of fire was in back of the children of Israel for light.)
- Glue bottom of tan or brown paper with glue.
- Scatter confetti in the bottom of the box on top of the not-too-drippy glue. Each confetti is an Israelite. (See pictures).
- Turn upside-down to shake off the extra confetti or "Israelites."
- Draw and cut out a teeny-tiny Moses with his rod.
- Cut the side of the box that is opposite the pillar of fire and cloud. This is the seashore.
- Glue Moses walking in front of all the Israelites. (see picture above.)
- Write "Walking Through The Red Sea" and "Exodus 14, 15" in front on the "seashore" by Moses. (See picture below).
- Write "The Egyptians were back here." on the back of the box. This is where all the chariot, army marching and horsemen activity took place.
- It takes a little more preparation with this activity, but the students will love it and talk about crossing the Red Sea all the way home!