Middle School

Disaster without the Master

Lesson 9 

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Fall 2019

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By: Cheri Gillard 

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October 27, 2019

Lesson Focus:

Rebellion against God spells disaster.

Bible Basis:

Joshua 24:25-29; Judges 2:10-16, 22-23; 21:25

Materials Needed:

Step 1:

  • Internet access
  • Whiteboard and marker

Summary & Links:

Middle schoolers will consider what some classroom rules are and explore what the consequences could be when those rules are broken.

Memory Verse:

A broken and contrite heart you, God, you will not despise.
—Psalm 51:17b

Step 1:

Middle schoolers will consider what some classroom rules are and explore what the consequences could be when those rules are broken.

Materials Needed:

  • Internet access
  • Whiteboard and marker

Everywhere we go, there are rules that guide us to know what our actions should or shouldn’t be, and they help us choose behavior that is acceptable and appropriate to the time and place. We start learning rules from a very young age—like when our parents tell us no when we reach for something that can hurt us when we’re babies, to when we learn how we should act when we cross a street or sit in church. Many times, we don’t even think of the rules anymore. Once we’ve learned them, they’re just a part of our subconscious processing which guides us through our day. Let’s watch a short clip from the Minions that is about school classroom rules. Even though it’s meant to be silly, keep track of some of the rules covered, and watch for what happens when the rules are broken. We’ll talk about it after the clip.

Show this clip to your students [4:26]:
Classroom Rules

After watching the clip, use the whiteboard and write the students’ answers in two columns, the first column listing the rules and the second column listing the possible consequences.

  • What are some of the classroom rules that were covered in the video? (Answers can include any of the rules. Examples include no chewing gum; listen to the teacher; no bullying; leave toys at home.)
  • What are some other rules that you are taught that don’t have to do with school? (Possible answers might include: Don’t use drugs; eat plenty of vegetables; brush your teeth every day; don’t blast music in your earbuds.)
  • For each of the rules we’ve listed, what could be the negative consequences when we ignore and break each rule? (Answers will vary, and can include the following for the rules listed from the film clip: Gum can drop on the floor and then someone might step on it tracking the sticky mess, it might ruin a textbook, or get stuck in someone’s hair or cause disruption; if you don’t listen you might miss important instructions; bullying can deeply hurt others; an expensive toy may be broken or distract other students from important school lessons.)

Rules are in place for important reasons. When we don’t follow them, there are consequences. We can get into trouble, for one. We may hurt ourselves or others, too. Not following established rules is a form of rebellion. We are rebelling against the authorities who have put them in place for everyone’s good. The Israelites rebelled against God, and it resulted in disaster. Today we’re going to learn more about what happened when they broke God’s rules.

Looking for Steps 2, 3 & 4?

You can find Steps 2 and 3 in your teacher’s guide. To purchase a teacher’s guide, please visit: Bible-in-Life or Echoes.

Step 4:

Materials Needed:

  • Internet access
  • Paper (1 per student; 8 x 8 inch square or 8 ½ x 11 inch)
  • Scissors
  • Pens or fine tip markers

After learning about the Israelites’ rebellion against God and the consequences, and ultimately the grace and mercy God showed them, it’s important for your students to apply the lesson to their own lives. They need to realize their choices impact their relationship with the Lord. They also need to know God is merciful and waiting to forgive them. This fun activity uses something they are probably already familiar with to help reinforce how today’s lesson applies to their own lives.

Before class, watch the following video to familiarize yourself with the folding process for the activity in this step. Your students will make folded “chatterboxes” and discover a new way to play with them. You may want to show the video to your students as well, stopping and starting after everyone has had a chance to catch up.

Craft tutorial [2:11]:
How To Make A Chatterbox

Our lesson is about people who lived a long time ago. But we can learn a lot from the stories today. We have our own rebellion against God when we sin, when we make choices against what God wants for us.

  • What are some ways we turn away from God today? (Help the students name sins we commit. Examples include: We tell lies, gossip, disobey, cheat, ignore, distrust, hate, obsess.)
  • How do these rebellions hurt us, others, or our relationship with God? (Sin causes hurt, resentment, pain, sadness, disconnection, disbelief, fear, distance, emotional wounds, suffering.)
  • How does God respond when we have “a broken and contrite heart” and ask forgiveness for these rebellions? (God forgives us, cleanses us from all unrighteousness, brings healing, draws us closer, continues to love us.)

We’re going to make “chatterboxes” today. But ours will be unique.

Share the following craft tutorial with your students [2:11]:
How To Make A Chatterbox

On the first four flaps, where you usually put colors, we will write ways we rebel against God, using one or two words. Then the second phase, on the eight spots inside, instead of numbers we’ll write consequences of sin, like we just listed. And under the four last flaps, we’ll write the ways God responds to us when we ask for forgiveness. Encourage your students to personalize their chatterbox by including at least one form of rebellion, or sin, that they struggle with themselves. Maybe today’s lesson has brought to mind a sin in your life. You don’t have to tell anyone if you don’t want to. But try to make your “chatterbox” as personal as you can.

After the students have completed their “chatterboxes,” allow time for them to use them with each other. Urge them to take them home as a reminder this week of today’s lesson.

End class by praying for the students. Ask God to help them identify their own rebellions against God and to give them courage to confess their sins. Remind them that God loves them no matter what, and that Jesus died and rose again to give them forgiveness. They just need to ask Him.

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