David C Cook COVID-19 Response

Upper Elementary

Genuine Justice

Lesson 6 


Fall 2020


By: RLD Editorial Team 


October 11, 2020

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Lesson Focus:

Treat others well even when they treat you badly.

Bible Basis:

1 Samuel 23—24

Materials Needed:

Step 1:

  • Internet access

Summary & Links:

Students will discuss how they react when people do selfish things as they explore God’s desire for His children to respond with good when treated badly.

Memory Verse:

Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
—Romans 12:21

Step 1:

Students will discuss how they react when people do selfish things as they explore God’s desire for His children to respond with good when treated badly.

Materials Needed:

  • Internet access

When was the last time you wished someone would get exactly what they deserve? All of us can think of a situation where someone wronged us or someone else. When that happens, it’s pretty natural to hope they get caught…if only to make sure they don’t do it again.

  • Have you ever gotten caught right after you did something you knew was wrong? What did you learn by that experience? (Answers may vary.)
  • Have you ever known someone who always seems to get away with things? Without naming any names, tell how that makes you feel. (Encourage students to discuss, but be careful to avoid gossip or oversharing.)

When people do things that are wrong or harmful, it can sometimes take a long time before they get payback. Other times, though, it happens right away! It can feel pretty satisfying to see this so-called “instant justice.” In the video we’re about to watch, an impatient driver decides to speed in the slow lane—and receives the consequences for that choice!

Play the following video for your students [0:36]:
Right-lane speeder gets instant justice

Ask a volunteer to recount what happened to the driver (a police officer ticketed the driver for speeding).

  • How did it feel to see this “instant justice”? (Answers may vary; encourage discussion. Most students will acknowledge that it felt good to see her get caught so quickly.)
  • Have you ever had a chance to get back at someone for something they did to you? What choice did you make? (Accept all reasonable answers; be prepared to share your own experiences.)

It’s hard not to cheer when someone who’s selfish gets caught. But when someone has wronged us personally, we can sometimes get too carried away with trying to get back at them. Our lesson today is about someone who had an opportunity to take justice into his own hands in an instance like that. Let’s see what happened.

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:

  • Index cards
  • Pens/pencils

If your class is meeting online, invite your students to bring an index card or piece of paper, along with a pen or pencil, with them to class.

As students clean up from Step 3, move back toward the lesson focus. In today’s lesson, David had an opportunity to take “justice” into his own hands. He could have killed Saul, but instead he chose to let God take care of things. He even apologized to Saul for cutting off the end of his robe.

  • Why did David choose not to take revenge himself? (Possible answers: Because he didn’t want to be responsible for killing Saul; because he trusted God to take care of it; because Saul was the anointed king.)

Taking revenge on our own is never a good idea. Instead of making things better, it makes things worse…for us as well as the other person.

When someone wrongs us, it can affect everything in our life. Sometimes, we add our own revenge to the mix. But no matter how much we try, it doesn’t make things the way they were. That’s why revenge doesn’t work. Instead, God wants us to trust Him to take care of things. When we trust God instead of taking revenge, there’s no limit to what He can accomplish!

As you go through your day, look for opportunities to treat people the way God wants you to treat them. This is particularly important when people are unkind or cruel to you, but it applies to all of your interactions and relationships.

Hand out one index card to each student and a pen/pencil. If your class is meeting online, invite students to have their papers and pens or pencils ready. Ask them to identify someone in their lives that they don’t usually spend time with or someone they usually do not get along with. Challenge them to write down one way that they will show kindness to that person this week. Let’s see how God works! Next week, come prepared to share what happened!

Close in prayer, asking God for strength to follow His plan instead of taking matters into our own hands.

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