Gideon, Mighty Judge of Israel
Summary of Lesson Activities:
The ingredients and actions of making Rice Crispy treats will help the students to learn the story.
For scripture and memory verses see above post.
- Understand that God allows us to question
- God can use regular people to do important work.
- God is powerful, and helps us achieve hard things
- Review Bible Background notes
- Gather the materials.
- Variety of water glasses, Straws, Ice cubes in bowl
- Pitchers of both water and Kool-Aid
- Ingredients for Rice Crispy Treats: see recipe in lesson
ALLERGY NOTE: Just to be on the safe side, check ingredient labels to make sure nuts and nut oils are not included !!
- Microwave, microwavable bowl, spoon,
- ice cream cones
- Put the pitchers of water and Kool-Aid, the ice cubes, the various cups, and straws on the table for the children to view.
- Have recipe ingredients measured and ready on a tray so you can easily tell the story.
Opening- Welcome and Lesson Introduction:
Make sure you have your nametag on. Introduce yourself to the students.
Open with a prayer if guide did not.
Dig-Main Content and Reflection:
Introduction & Bible Story
SAY: “Today you are going to hear a story about a man named Gideon. This Bible story takes place in the Old Testament, in the time before Jesus was born. Years before, God chose Moses to free the people of Israel from slavery in Egypt, and then God guided Joshua as he led them into Canaan, the Promised Land. The people kept turning away from God and worshipping false gods. Then God would allow enemies to come in and oppress Israel. The people would pray to God for help and God would sent someone to help. They were called judges, but they weren’t like the judges we have today who sit in a courtroom. These judges were more like leaders.
We are going to hear more about the story as we make our Rice Krispy Treats, but I wanted to let you know how making a choice in how to drink (just like you did at the start of class) was important to the story. Gideon was chosen by God to find an army to fight the Israelite’s enemies. He was told by God to select the men who would fight in his army according to the way they drank their water. Gideon took the men down to the river for a drink of cool water. The men who knelt and put their faces in the water to drink were sent home. Only the men who scooped up the water in their hands and lapped like a dog would become members of Gideon’s army.” There would only be 300 men in Gideon’s army—the enemy had 135,000 fighters! God WANTED the army of Israel to be so small. With such a small army, they knew that they couldn’t defeat the enemy with their own power. They had to trust in God and His power. We’ll find out what happened when they trusted in God.
Read Judges 7: 5-7
Set out the ingredients for your recipe.
Gideon was called by God to find an army to fight the Israelite’s enemies. Did Gideon question his ability to accomplish this task? Did Gideon question God to make sure he could trust him? What happened? (God passed all of the tests Gideon gave)
What does this tell you about our faith in God? Should we trust him? Does God allow us to question him? Will he helps us achieve hard things?
Prayer: Dear God, you told Gideon what to do when he needed your help. Please help us listen to you and obey as Gideon did. Amen.
Rice Crispy Treats
3 tablespoons margarine or butter
1 package (10 oz. about 40) regular marshmallows
or 4 cups miniature marshmallows, or a jar of marshmallow crème
3 cups rice crispy cereal
3 cups coco crispy cereal
1 can nonstick cooking spray
Ice cream cones (enough for class size)
Say: For the past seven years, the people of Midian would come into Israel just when the farmers were harvesting their crops, and they would steal the food away. Gideon was threshing wheat one day (that is where you separate the good wheat from the straw) and he didn’t want it to be stolen. So he was stooped over in a winepress—hardly the best way to do this but at least he was hidden from the Midianites. This cereal will remind us of the wheat (Begin to measure the cereal into cups.) Suddenly an angel of the Lord appeared and instructed Gideon to lead an army of his people against an enemy who had invaded their lands. And, the enemy army was very big. Gideon had no army. He wasn’t important in his village, or in his family. He didn’t understand or know why God asked him to be a leader.
He was in a muddle. He was mixed up. (Have the children dump the cups of cereal into the mixing bowl. Stir to mix the colors.)
Gideon decided he needed to test God, just to make sure he could trust God’s instructions. (Place margarine in a microwavable bowl)
Gideon put a wooly fleece on the ground. We’ll pretend these fluffy marshmallows are our fleece. (Let the children help you measure the marshmallows and put them into the bowl containing the margarine. Place in the microwave on HIGH for 3 minutes, stirring after 2 minutes. Stir until smooth. Microwave times may vary)
As the microwave is running, SAY: Gideon told God that in the morning, the wool should be wet with dew and the ground dry. If this happened, Gideon would know he was to lead the army. What happened when Gideon woke up? (The wool was wet and the ground was dry.) As our marshmallows are melting, they are getting “wet.”
But Gideon still wasn’t sure—he still had doubts. He decided to test God’s instructions again. This time Gideon asked God to keep the wool dry, but make the ground around it wet. In nature, if the ground is wet then the fleece would be wet as well. So Gideon is asking for a sign that is totally against what would normally happen. What happened when he woke up the next morning? (The ground was wet and the wool was dry.)
(Mix the cereal with the melted marshmallows. Stir until it’s well coated. This is messy, and the mixture is hot. Older children can help.)
All our cereal (the ground) is now wet. Gideon knew he could trust God’s instructions. And, he listened to what God told him to do. Remember how we talked about how God told Gideon to choose the soldiers? (by the way that they drank water). This Bible story has an exciting ending. Gideon gives each man in his army a trumpet, an empty jar and a torch.
(Pick up an ice cream cone, and fill it with some of the cereal mixture.)
Gideon tells them, “Watch me. Do as I do. Hold your torch under the jar when we approach the enemy’s camp. When I blow the trumpet, blow your trumpet. Shout, “For the Lord and for Gideon! Keep watching me, and do what I do.”
(Continue filling the cones and handing them out to the children.)
When Gideon blew his trumpet, the men did too. Gideon broke the jar that covered his torch. The men did, too. Gideon shouted, and all 300 men shouted the same words. Let’s hold up our cones and repeat the words Gideon shouted. “A sword for the Lord and for Gideon.”
Let’s bite our trumpet cones and see if we make lots of noise! What a clatter of noise! It must have been terrifying!
The 300 stood firm but the enemy camp was in confusion. They believed a huge army – thousands and thousands of men, was attacking them. They started fighting and killing each other or ran away in fear, and Gideon’s army was victorious. Gideon trusted God’s instructions, even though he didn’t understand what God had in mind.
God is good, don’t you agree? Let’s enjoy our treats
“Gideon’s Trumpets” written by Augustana Lutheran Church
Saint James, Minnesota and found on rotation.org.
A Lesson Set written by members of: Chicago Western Suburbs Rotation Roundtable
Permission to copy materials granted for non-commercial use provided credit is given and all cited references remain with this material
A representative of Rotation.org reformatted this post to improve readability.