The Lord is My Banner

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Scripture: Exodus 17: 8 – 16

Target Age Group:  1st through 6th grade

Welcome the children to the classroom and chat with them about their week as they gather around the table.

Pray and ask God to teach the children not just head knowledge, but also heart knowledge.

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Bible Lesson:
Have the children open their Bibles to Exodus 17: 8-16  or pages 130 – 131 in The Golden Children’s Bible.

Before reading the story, ask for a volunteer.  Have the child stand in front of the class and hold his or her hands in the air for the duration of the story and discussion time as suggested by Lisa DeVinney.

(Read the story to the children because at this age some of the children do not read smoothly, which hinders comprehension for the whole class.)

Discussion:

  • How did the Israelites end up in a battle with the Amalekites?  The Amalekites attacked them.
  • Read Deuteronomy 25:17-18  “Remember what the Amalekites did to you along the way when you came out of Egypt. When you were weary and worn out, they met you on your journey and attacked all who were lagging behind; they had no fear of God.” How were the Amalekites attacking them? They were attacking the weakest ones from behind.
  • What instructions did Moses give to Joshua?  He was to choose some men to fight the battle.
  • What was Moses going to do?  He was going to stand on a hill and hold up the staff of God.
  • What other things had that staff been used for? turning into a snake, turning the water to blood, parting the Red Sea, making water come out of a rock, etc.
  • What happened when Moses held up the staff?  The Israelites would win in the battle.
  • What happened when Moses lowered the staff?  The Israelites would start to loose the battle.
  • Moses got tired after awhile.  So, what did Hur and Aaron do?  They had him sit on a stone and they held up his arms for him.
  • Who won the battle?  The Israelites.
  • Moses built an alter.  What did he name it?  The Lord is My Banner.
  •   Why do you think that he said that the Lord is his banner?  It would be like us saying that we serve under the flag of our country.  Moses was giving God the credit for the victory and expressing loyalty to Him.
  • Read Isaiah 11:10 “In that day the Root of Jesse will stand as a banner for the peoples; the nations will rally to him, and his resting place will be glorious.” (Explain that the Root of Jesse is Jesus.  He was lifted up on the cross just as a flag is lifted up and He gathers the loyal followers to himself. And in the end we will be victorious.)
  • What kid of “attacks” do you face?  teasing and bullying, family conflicts, struggles at school or with homework, temptations to do wrong, etc.
  • Are you battling things out by yourself?  Or are you under the banner of the Lord?  
  • If we are under Christ’s banner we will win in the end.  Don’t fight under a losing banner. 
  • Think of how important it was that Aaron and Hur helped Moses hold up the staff.  How important do you think that it is for you to help someone else succeed by praying for them and giving them other kinds of support?
  • Who else prays for us? The Bible says that Jesus prays for us.  And he never gets tired.
  • Let’s pray and tell Jesus that he is our banner, we are loyal to him,  and to ask for his help to  overcome “attacks”…

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During the remaining class time do activities that help to reinforce what the children have learned. Here are some suggestions…

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Memorize the verse.

John 16:33b “In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

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Have the children use colors or pastels to draw their own vision of the story on a sketch pad page.

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Show the children the Christian flag and teach them to say the pledge of allegiance to the Christian flag:

I pledge allegiance to the Christian Flag, 

and to the Savior, for whose kingdom it stands. 

One Savior, crucified, risen and coming again, 

with life and liberty for all who believe.

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Have the children make flags to represent Christ, our banner, using construction paper and markers.  Glue, staple, or tape each flag to a small thin dowel.

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Have older children get into groups of two or three and share with each other the struggles that they are having right now and then have them pray together about them.  Ask them pray for each other through the week about these things.  (For younger children, share the struggles together in the whole group and pray for them as a group.)

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There are some good ideas here for a game and a craft from David Cook.  Scroll down to pages 20 – 23.

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Read or listen to the story, “The Banner” from Keys for Kids.

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Here is a great skit idea.

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Sing “What Seems Impossible” by Mary Rice Hopkins from the Dancing in the Desert album.

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Evaluate what the children have learned.  While they are coloring or crafting ask each one what they learned today.

Send each child’s parent an e-mail (or a hard copy) of the  Parents’ Page.

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