VERSES: 2 Kings 5:1-19
MEMORY VERSE: 2 Kings 5:11 "But Naaman was wroth (angry), and went away, and said, Behold, I thought..."
BOOK TO REMEMBER: Joel. Write "Joel" on small slips of paper and hand out to students at the end of class.
PRAYER: Pray that we will not have any preconceived ideas like Naaman had when it comes to obeying God. May we take God's Word for Truth and not add to it or subtract from it. Let us have the kind of heart that can change to God's Way and not stay in our own way.
SPECIAL SONG: The Books of the Old Testament (see March - Songs That We Sing In Bible Class #3 on this blog.)
VISUAL AID: TV Box. See February - Visual Aid #1. Draw pictures of this story in sequence on a roll of paper. The instructions and advice on February - Visual Aid #1 should help.
- In Bible times, there was a disease that some people were afflicted with that was called leprosy. It was a dreaded disease because there was no cure for it like in most countries today. If a person got leprosy in 2014, they would take some medicine and get better, but not in Bible times. People never recovered from leprosy back then and, sometimes, not on purpose, but accidentally, they would touch someone or maybe their clothes would touch another person, and the other person would get leprosy, too. It was a very bad disease.
- There was an important man named Naaman. He was a captain for a great many soldiers in the King of Syria's army. He was a mighty man of valor just like Gideon and his brave 300 (see June - Lesson - Gideon and His Brave 300 on this blog for reference). Naaman had something wrong with him and he was greatly upset by his disease. Naaman had leprosy!
- The Syrians had gone out and fought battles and brought back captives or people from other lands who the Syrians made servants. One of these servants was a young girl from the land of Israel and the young girl said to her mistress or the one over her, "If only my master would go and see the prophet of the LORD that is in Samaria! He would make my master well from his leprosy." One of the other servants went in and told his master what the young girl from the land of Israel had said. Soon, the king of Syria heard what the young girl had said and told Naaman to go and he would send a letter to the King of Israel.
- Naaman went with a few of his servants and also with precious presents, like silver and gold and clothing to give to Elisha, the prophet of God. Naaman took the letter and gave it to the King of Israel to read. The letter said that the king of Syria was sending Naaman, his servant, to Israel to be healed of his leprosy. When the King of Israel read the letter, he tore his clothes and asked if he was God who knew how to heal leprosy because he did not! He thought that maybe the king of Syria was trying quarrel with him or pick a fight.
- But when Elisha heard that the King of Israel had torn his clothes, he sent word to the king of Israel to send Naaman to him because he wanted Naaman to know that there was a prophet in Israel. So, off Naaman went to see Elisha. He traveled in his chariot and his horses and then he stood at Elisha's door of his house, waiting. But Elisha did not come to the door, he sent a messenger to tell Naaman to go and wash in the Jordan River seven times and he would be completely healed.
- Now you would think that Naaman would be happy and rush to the Jordan River to wash himself seven times, but he was not happy. Instead, Naaman was angry!! Naaman went away in a rage and said, "I THOUGHT he would surely come to talk to me and stand and call on the name of the LORD his God and clap his hands together and cure the leper! He was angry because Elisha had not chosen a cleaner river! Naaman thought that two other rivers in Damascus were better to wash in, so Naaman went away from ELisha's house extremely upset!
- But Naaman had good servants. His wise servants asked Naaman if Elisha had asked Naaman to do something very difficult or better than just washing in a river, would not have Naaman done it? This made Naaman think, and Naaman changed his mind. He went down to the Jordan River and dipped not one time, not two times, not three times, not four times, not five times, not six times, but seven times and do you know what happened?? Let's read in 2 Kings 2:14 and see what God said happened. (Read verse). What happened to Naaman? His skin became like a little child's and he was clean!! Have you ever felt the skin of a young child? It is so soft and that was just like Naaman's skin!
- Naaman was so happy that he went back to Elisha's house and tried to give him the presents he had brought for him, but Elisha would not take them. Naaman started back on his journey.
"Older Student" Tips:
- Leprosy is such a terrible, contagious disease of the skin. You can catch it through coughing and sneezing. They say that the flesh or skin is discolored and has lumps. Sometimes it causes deformities and damages the nerve endings. When lepers can't feel their fingers and toes, sometimes it causes problems like being burned without knowing it and they can be damaged. Leprosy can cause blindness and make people crippled. Leprosy still exists in over 100 countries today. It is a terrible disease to get. No wonder Naaman was trying so desperately to find someone who could help him. The young girl truly helped her master, didn't she?
- Sometimes we think we have all the answers, don't we? Naaman thought he had a better idea. He wanted Elisha to come out of his house and do something special to him, but Elisha chose not to do anything but send the message out to Naaman. If Naaman had not listened to his wise servants and went to wash in a river in Damascus, would Naaman have been healed? No! If Naaman would have dipped three times or six times in the Jordan River, would he have been healed? No! Naaman had to obey, didn't he? And that meant doing it God' way--seven times in the Jordan River! We need to do things God's way, too, don't we? Just because we think we have a better idea, the outcome might not be what we want because we did not follow the instructions completely. We need to listen to God and do what He says.
ACTIVITY: "Naaman Dips Seven Times In The Jordan River"
Materials needed: 9" x 12" light blue construction paper, 9" x 12" dark blue construction paper, 4" x 6" piece of white construction paper, gold fastener, glue, scissors, crayons and markers.
- Hand out light blue paper.
- Hand out dark blue paper.
- Fold dark blue paper in half, length-wise.
- Tear off folded edge of dark blue paper.
- Glue one piece of dark blue paper to bottom edge of light blue paper.
- Poke a hole through dark blue and light blue paper towards the middle of the light blue paper. This is where Naaman will be placed.
- Hand out white paper.
- Draw Naaman.
- Color Naaman.
- Cut out Naaman.
- Poke a fastener through Naaman and through hole that was made in paper.
- Turn paper over.
- Bend out fastener. (Students really like to do this part!)
- Turn paper over.
- Make sure Naaman can turn this around.
- Come down an inch or so, and glue second piece of blue paper on top of other blue paper at left and right sides only.
- Write "Naaman Dips Seven Times In The Jordan River" and "2 Kings 5".
- Decorate with trees and dirt on other side of blue water, if desired.
- Naaman can be "dipped" seven times ov er and over again because he moves!
- Stress how many times Naaman had to dip before his skin was cleansed of leprosy.