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Complete Lesson Set from River Community Church ~ Anointing of David

Editor's Note: During forum renovation, because of the way it was written (well!), we chose to keep this lesson set together rather than split it into the workshop specific forums. This set draws upon ideas previously found in this forum.

This first post in the set provides an overview, teacher's notes, and resource listing.

Here is a complete set of lessons for…

The Anointing of David 

Summary of all workshops in this Rotation:

  • Games:  The children will play a game looking at optical illusions and closeups of objects to demonstrate that things and people are not always as they appear. The children will discuss the concepts of God seeing things that we don’t and God judging us by our hearts and not our outward appearance.

  • Art/Creative Writing: The children will reflect on what God saw in David and then write and decorate a poem about what is in their hearts that God sees. They will also do some other activities to help them understand how certain things about us cannot be seen, but can be known by God. 

  • Video/AV: The children will watch a portion of David (TNT Bible Series) and then will consider what it means to have a “heart for God” as they create their own movie scenes. They will have an opportunity to give their hearts to Jesus.

  • Puppetry: During this puppet workshop, the students will hear and discuss the story of David's anointing from 1 Samuel 16. They will use puppetry to retell/interpret the story in their own words. In so doing, they will grow in their understanding of God’s call for everyone, even the least of us. If time permits, they will also explore David’s work as a Psalmist through a choral reading of a Psalm.

Scripture Reference:

1 Samuel 16: 1-13 

Memory Verse: 

The LORD does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart. 1 Samuel 16:7b (NIV)

Workshop Objectives — At the end of the Rotation, the students will

  • be able to locate the book of 1 Samuel in the Old Testament and identify it as part of the history of the Israelite nation.
  • be able to retell the story of Samuel anointing David in their own words.
  • learn that the shepherd boy David will become Israel’s greatest king, and, more importantly, an ancestor of the Messiah.
  • appreciate that God is in charge, working steadfastly according to His own plan and timetable.
  • learn that God judges people by what is inside them, not by their looks or talent or age or place in the family.
  • learn that God chooses leaders by their character, so that even ordinary people with great character can be great leaders in God’s Kingdom.
  • be able to repeat the memory verse.

Additional Background Notes
Excepted from “David - Misc Lesson Sets” Anointing of David -Bible Background Notes from “Nancy”

The books of Samuel cover the transformation of ancient Israel from a loosely connected group of tribes to a centralized monarchy (roughly from 1020 to 961 BC). The books originally were one continuous narrative, and were divided when they were translated into Greek. The entire book of Samuel would not have fit on the standard scroll length, thus the division into two books.

The thematic tie in this episode is the word “to see,” (ra’ah). The word carries the added meaning, “ to provide” (16:1b). This is the same unusual word choice that is found in the story of the binding of Isaac in which Abraham answers his son’s question concerning the sacrifice by saying, “God will ‘provide’ a lamb”. There is the sense in which God sees and God provides in a way different from humankind. The narrative in 1 Samuel will contrast the flawed “seeing” of the prophet Samuel, with the “seeing” of God. Verse seven can be translated as the LORD sees “with” or “in” the heart (16:7). Either translation underscores the difference between human judgment and divine wisdom. In the ancient worldview the heart was the seat of understanding or insight. (1) The text uses different verbs to contrast God who “sees” with Samuel who “looks.” (16:7) (2) Samuel sees the handsome firstborn son, Eliab, as a potential king (16:6); but God has rejected that one, just as God has rejected Saul. The connection continues as Saul asks his servants to “’Provide’ for me someone who can play well” (16:17). A servant replies, “Look, I have seen a son of Jesse….” And yet, when David comes to play the lyre for him, Saul cannot see what God has already seen in David. The “seeing” of humans does not compare with the “seeing” of God into the heart.

The lowliness of David is underscored by his late birth, not even the seventh son (an important number), but the eighth son of Jesse. He is so lowly that when Jesse is asked to present his sons, he does not even bother to bring David. In contrast with Saul’s father, David’s family is not prominent or wealthy. (9:1) His great-grandmother was a foreigner, a Moabite not an Israelite. Nothing in David’s background would hint at his future status as the beloved king of Israel.

Books for sharing during Shepherd Time:

Cover of the book 'The Shepherd's Song'There are many picture book versions about available in the public library. There are also a number of books about the Twenty-third Psalm, the Good Shepherd, and Psalms. Ask your librarian for help, or look for:

  • Auld, Mary. David and Goliath. New York: Franklin Watts, 1999.
  • Cohen, Barbara. David. New York: Clarion Books, 1995.
  • de Regniers, Beatrice Schenk. David and Goliath. New York: Orchard Books, 1965, 1996.
  • Eisler, Colin. David’s Songs: His Psalms and Their Story. New York: Dial, 1992.
  • Fisher, Leonard Everett. David and Goliath. New York: Holiday House, 1993.
  • Miner, Julia (illustrator). The Shepherd’s Song: The Twenty-third Psalm. New York: Dial, 1993.
  • Segal, Lore Grosman. The Story of King Saul and King David. New York: Schocken Books, 1991.



A lesson set written by Amy Crane for River Community Church
Prairieville, LA
Copyright 2004 Amy Crane. Permission granted to freely distribute and use, provided this copyright message is included. 

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  • The cover of the book 'The Shepherd's Song'
Last edited by Luanne Payne
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