Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Lesson - Babylon Besieges Jerusalem

VERSES:   2 Kings 25:1-39;  2 Chronicles 36:11-23

MEMORY VERSE:   2 Kings 25:21  "...So Judah was carried away out of their land."

BOOK TO REMEMBER: Review, once more, all the 39 books of the Old Testament.

PRAYER:  Pray for those who are sick that they have better health, the ones who are sad that they may be comforted, and the ones who have turned from God that they turn their hearts back to God.

SPECIAL SONG:   On Jordan's Stormy Banks (see June - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #6 on this blog)

VISUAL AID:   Map, showing the distance between Jerusalem and Babylon. Draw a large picture of the one above on the whiteboard or chalkboard.

  • After Josiah, all of the rest of the kings of Judah did evil things in the sight of the LORD God. They did not walk in the ways of David. They rebelled against God and did not listen to Him and did not love and serve Him like God wanted them to do. God had warned the people over and over and over again, ever since the people had left Egypt with Moses, that they should love and serve Him only. Did they do that? Maybe for very short times, but overall, they served idols and false gods and turned their hearts from God. They were warned of the consequence of their sin, but they sinned anyway!
  • When the Babylonians came to Jerusalem like God said they would, they besieged the city. Remember 'besiege' meant that nothing was going into the city. No food. No people. No animals. No vegetables. No flour. No supplies of any kind. Nothing. Whatever the city had in it at the beginning of being besieged was as good as it got because, as the people ate food, the supply of food got less and less. The Babylonian army had built forts all around Jerusalem, making sure nothing came in to the city.The enemy tried to starve the people out, so they would submit to them. This went on for almost two years! Can you imagine not buying any groceries or bringing anything in your home for two years? Times were extremely tough. 
  • Zedekiah was the King of Judah and his heart was not with God. He had rebelled against the king of Babylon, but that did not mean that he had turned to God. He still did wickedly. He stiffened his neck and hardened his heart and did not humble himself before Jeremiah, the prophet of God. Even the most important priests and the people sinned greatly. They polluted the house of the LORD . Even then, God was still sending prophets to His people because God loved His people and He wanted them to serve Him. But they mocked or made fun of His messengers, hated God's words, and misused His prophets until God was so angry that the Bible says in 2 Chronicles 36:16 that "there was no remedy," meaning the people had gone so far away from God gave up on them.
  • The soldiers of Judah fled the city at night, escaping through the king's garden that had a gate between two walls, and they took King Zedekiah with them.  They ran away to the desert, but the Babylonians followed them and caught them. They took King Zedekiah to Babylon where they pronounced judgment on him, killed his sons, and blinded him. They tied up King Zedekiah with brass chains and carried him away to far-away Babylon. 
  • God allowed the enemy, the Babylonians and their king, to kill all who they wanted to kill. They took all the valuables out of the temple and burnt the temple. They broke down the wall that was all around Jerusalem that protected them from intruders, and burnt down not only the temple, but the king's house, all of the houses of Jerusalem, and all the important men's fine houses. 
  • The King of Babylon carried away all the healthy people and the younger people, but he left all the old people and the poor people behind in Jerusalem to take care of the vineyards and crops. There was a remnant or a very small group of God's people left.
  • Judah was carried away out of their land. Because of their sin and rebellion to God, they were forced to leave their beautiful land of Canaan.
"Older Student" Tips:
  • The Babylonians were also known as the Chaldees.
  • War is never good and it was not good for Zedekiah. The Babylonians were known for being ruthless and having no compassion or politeness about them. They had no regard for how old their prisoners were. They even killed the old people who were stooped with age.
  • Discuss how there has always been a remnant of the faithful and how there still is a remnant of God's people loving Him and serving Him, choosing to follow God's Word.
ACTIVITY:   Babylonian Captivity
Materials Needed:  6" x 18" tan construction paper, crayons, markers.

  1. Hand out paper to students.
  2. Write "2 Kings 25:21" and "...So Judah was away out of the land." at the top of the tan paper.
  3. Draw six or seven unhappy men chained together in a line facing one way.
  4. Draw the back of a wagon loaded with valuables from the temple in front of the men.
  5. Draw a sign that says "Babylon."
  6. In the distance draw a city of fire.
  7. Draw a line representing hills in the background.
  8. Color.
  9. Fold paper in thirds, so that the picture will stand up on a table, creasing folds crisply.