God Says What?

Scripture: Joshua 1-4

Learning Objectives:

  • Students will learn that God keeps His promises.
  • Students will learn that God wants us to obey Him even in the little things that may not make sense to us.
  • Students will participate in an activity to help them better understand how Rahab and the Israelites might have felt while obeying God’s commands for them.
  • Learning objective #4

Guiding Question: Why does God expect us to obey His commands that don’t make sense to us?

Materials: optional: bible costumes, shafors, “Ark of Covenant”, scarlet cord, “Walls of Jericho”, adult actors for speaking roles of Bible verses.

Procedure: Explain to the students they are going to play the parts of the people who were involved in these stories, but that the Bible doesn’t tell us what they said. Others (can be students or adults actors) will play the roles the Bible gives us. At times during the action, you will stop the play and tell them who they are in the story at this point. You will them ask them to share the questions and concerns they would have if they were those people. (Stop the drama at the following points and ask the students to share all of the questions and concerns the people might have had told God wanted them to do the following things:

The people when told they would have to cross the Jordan River with all of their belongings.

Rahab’s relatives when told they had to be in her house with scarlet cord hanging from the window in order to be saved from the coming distaster.

The people when Joshua tell them as soon as the priests carrying the Ark of the Covenant touch the Jordan the waters will miraculously create a dam and dry land on which they can cross.

If time permits, skip ahead to chapter 6 and include: The people when told they would defeat a large walled city by walking around it blowing shofars and shouting,)

After the drama spend a few minutes talking with students about what they just experienced and ask: Why did all of those people choose to obey God even though they had questions, concerns and maybe even some doubts? Why is it important for us to obey God’s commands even when they don’t make sense to us? If time permits give them modern examples. For younger students, give examples of God telling us to obey our parents. What if Mom tells you to take an umbrella when it’s not even cloudy? Older students may want to discuss topics like drinking alcohol, many older teens drink even though it is against the law and God tells us to obey authorities, God tells us it’s a sin to get drunk. Or use lying as an example, God forbids all lies but wouldn’t God want me to lie about my friend’s ugly dress so I won’t hurt her feelings? It doesn’t always make sense to us to obey God but God still expects us to obey.