VERSES: 1 Kings 15 through 2 Kings 24
MEMORY VERSE: 1 Kings 15:11 "And Asa did that which was right in the eyes of the LORD."
BOOK TO REMEMBER: Psalms. Write "Psalms" on small slips of paper and hand out at the end of class.
PRAYER: Pray for the parents of the students that they might do well in the eyes of the LORD.
SPECIAL SONG: Children Obey your Parents (see March - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #4 on this blog).
VISUAL AID: Use the whiteboard or the chalkboard as your piece of paper and write the names of the kings before the students come to class. Add happy or unhappy faces as you tell the story.
(NOTE: Short lesson, long activity. Beware of time getting away from you!)
- Whose idea was it to have a king over God's people? It was definitely not God's idea! God wanted to be and should have been the people's only King, but the people looked around them and saw that the neighboring cities and nations had kings; they wanted a king, too. God warned them what it would be like having a king (see July - Lesson - Israel Wants A King on this blog), but still they asked Samuel for a king. God gave them a king. What a lot of trouble!
- King Saul, King David, and King Solomon each ruled God's people for forty years. The people were ruled as one people; it was a United Kingdom. But then, we remember that Rehoboam sinned and the kingdom was torn from him and ten of the twelve tribes were given to King Solomon's servant, Jeroboam, who led the Kingdom of Israel, as it was called, to idolatry and away from God. King Solomon's son, Rehoboam, also led the Kingdom of Judah, as his kingdom was called, into idolatry as well.
- After Jeroboam and Rehoboam both died, their kingdoms were given to their sons until they died, then the kingdoms were to their sons, and on and on. Every one of the kings that ruled the Kingdom of Israel were evil! All 19 of them! Some were very wicked and God dealt with them accordingly. On the other hand, the kings that ruled the Kingdom of Judah were good and some were bad. Out of 19 kings and one queen, only eight were good kings who tried to follow God's ways. The good kings had names like Asa, Jehoshaphat, Joash, Amaziah, Azariah, Jotham, Hezekiah, and Josiah. (I wish I had a good song for the good kings of Judah, but I do not. Perhaps you can choose a catchy tune and insert those eight names!) But that means that there were still 12 bad kings of Judah.
- We will not be studying all of these kings because some of the stories are very short, perhaps three to four verses, but we will be studying a few of these rulers and the prophets who lived at the same time they lived.
- After King Saul died, King Saul's son, Ishbosheth, ruled ten tribes for two years while the kingdom of Judah was continually ruled by David (see August - Lesson - A Kingdom of Transition on this blog).
ACTIVITY: A Divided Kingdom
Materials needed: 12" x 18" blue construction paper, thirty-one 1/2"orange circles (or unhappy stickers), eight 1/2" yellow circles (or happy circles), crayons, black marker, glue, scissors.
- Hand out blue paper.
- Holding the paper landscape-style, fold down top edge two inches.
- Fold blue paper in half, length-wise.
- Write "THE DIVIDED KINGDOM" at the top of the paper.
- Write "ISRAEL" on left side of paper in the second folded box. (see picture).
- Write "JUDAH" on the right side of paper in the second folded box. (see picture).
- Number left side of paper from 1-19.
- Number right side of paper from 1-20.
- Write all 19 kings of Israel. (see names below)
- Write all 19 kings and one queen of Judah. (see names below)
- Draw unhappy faces on orange circles.
- Draw happy faces on yellow circles.
- Glue yellow circles next to good kings (see above for names).
- Glue orange circles next to bad kings (everyone else).
- Review paper with all students before they leave class.
NAMES OF KINGS OF ISRAEL: (all unhappy faces)
- Jeroboam 2
NAMES OF KINGS OF JUDAH: (12 unhappy faces/8 happy faces) Good kings are in red.
- Athaliah (Queen)