Israel's Unfaithfulness

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Dear Parents,

Following Joshua’s death, the Israelites were without a leader. They fell into a cycle of sin that can be seen during each reign of the judges. The cycle is marked by an A-B-C-D-E pattern. Let’s look at the first judge, Othniel, to see this pattern.

First, the people fell into Apostasy. They turned away from God and served other gods. (Judg. 3:7) Next, they experienced a period of Bondage. God was angry with the Israelites, and He gave them into the hand of the king of Aram. (v. 8) Third, the peopleCried out to God. (v. 9) Then, God sent a Deliverer to save them. (vv. 9-10) Finally, they had Ease in the land. (v. 11) Then Othniel died.

This pattern continued with Ehud. The people had again turned from God. Their apostasy made God angry. He sent them into bondage by strengthening the king of Moab to defeat Israel. The Israelites served the king of Moab for 18 years.

The Moabites were well-fed, especially the king. They enjoyed the fruit of the Israelites’ labor while the Israelites went hungry. By thrusting a sword into the king’s belly, Ehud disemboweled the king and left him dead on the floor of his room. The fat covered over the handle of the sword so that Ehud could not remove it.

After Ehud delivered Israel, the Israelites struck down the Moabites and there was peace in the land for eighty years. But Ehud would die, and they would need another judge to lead them.

As you talk with your kids this week, discuss that the Israelites needed someone better than a judge. The judges saved the people from the consequences of their sin, but not the cause of it. God’s plan was to one day send a true Deliverer—Jesus, His own Son—to be the King of His people. Jesus saves people from sin forever.

Check this session’s Activity Page and Big Picture Card as well as the Gospel Project for Kids Family App for ways to interact with the Bible content this week.

FAMILY STARTING POINTS

|  Babies and Toddlers

  • God helps us obey Him.

  • God’s people did not always obey Him.

  • God sent judges to rescue God’s people.

  • God sent Jesus to be our Judge.

|  Preschool

  • What is repentance? Repentance is turning away from sin and turning to Jesus.

  • God’s people forgot about Him.

|  Kids

  • What is repentance? Repentance is turning away from sin and turning to Jesus.

  • God’s people repeatedly turned from Him.

UNIT KEY PASSAGE
1 John 1:9 (1 John 1:9a for Babies, Toddlers, and Preschoolers)

NEXT WEEK
“Deborah and Barak” (Judges 4–5)

Milestone Church