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OBEDIENCE

Week 2: Obedience leads to blessing

Memory Verse:

Pre-school to Grades 1-3: “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right.” Ephesians 6:l

Grades 4 and up: “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right.”Honor your father and mother”–which is the first commandment with a promise–“that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.” – Ephesians 6:1-3

LESSON:

Review of last week’s lesson

Last week we spoke about the way of OBEDIENCE and the importance of listening and obeying God’s voice. When we disobey God, we commit SIN, and this is the way of REBELLION.

(1) The Way of Jesus: The Way of Obedience. It is when a person says in his/her heart, “I want to do what God wants me to do.” It is when we make a decision to know God’s will by reading His Word and then doing our best to follow it. We may not always get it right but with the help of the Holy Spirit, we are able to understand what God wants and have the courage and strength to do it.

(2) The Way of Satan: The Way of Rebellion. It is when a person says in his/her heart, “I don’t care what God says, I will do what I want to do.” It is when we choose to listen to other voices (like from television, movies, wrong kinds of friends, or even one’s own selfish desires) instead of following what the Bible tells us to do.

BIBLE STORY: The Story of Ruth and Naomi (Read Ruth 3:1-5)

Naomi and Ruth were both widows. Naomi is Ruth’s mother-in-law. During their time, widows were considered really poor, because they had no more husbands to protect them and take care of them. When their husbands died while they were still in Moab, Naomi asked her two daughters-in-law to return to their families while she went back to Bethlehem alone. One of them said goodbye, but Ruth told Naomi, “Don’t urge me to leave you or to turn back from you. Where you go I will go, and where you stay, I will stay. Your people will be my people, and your God my God.” So Ruth went with Naomi and took care of her elderly mother-in-law.

Ruth had been gathering leftover grain in the fields of one of Naomi’s relatives, Boaz. Now, Naomi thought it was good for Ruth to get married to Boaz, so that Ruth would have a good life and a better future. So she gave instructions for Ruth to prepare herself and at the right time, let Boaz know she was available for marriage by lying down near Boaz’s feet as he slept. This might sound a bit weird to us, but this was the proper way they did it during their time. Ruth obeyed her mother-in-law’s wise advice and did as she was told. True enough, Boaz acknowledged her and soon they were married.

Ruth was blessed because first of all, she chose to follow the one true God that Naomi believed in instead of going back to her old life and false gods in Moab. She honored her mother-in-law by going with her to take care of her instead of letting her fend for herself as an old widow. She also chose to obey Naomi’s advice which led to God’s blessing. She was “redeemed” from her poor life as a widow and became the wife of a good man named Boaz. Ruth was truly blessed because she bacame the mother of Obed, who was the father of Jesse, the father of David. And we know David became Israel’s greatest king, from whose family came Jesus, the Messiah.

Obedience leads to blessing

God is our “supreme authority” – as our Creator, He has the right to rule us and be obeyed. One way God guides and leads us is through the different people he has placed as authorities over us. They are what we call as God’s delegated authorities. When we respect and obey them, we are obeying God. But when we choose to rebel against them, then we are rebelling against God.

God has placed our parents and guardians (ex. titos and titas or lolos and lolas who take care of us) as the authorities in the home. Ephesians 6:1 tells us, “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right.” This is just a reminder to follow the fifth commandment (NOTE: review 10 commandments) to “honor your father and mother.” Our parents were given the responsibility of raising us, and part of what they do is ask God’s help in taking care of their children. God then gives them wisdom to teach what is right and wrong so that their children will grow up as good men and women of God. Our responsibility as children is to honor and respect our parents and obey them for this pleases the Lord.

Obedience to the commandment to honor our parents and obey them leads to a life of BLESSING which is “that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.”(Ephesians 6:3). If we think about it, a child that is trained up by his parents in the way of the Lord is truly blessed. For example:

a. As a young child: An obedient child is a joy to have around, unlike a spoiled brat who can be very annoying and sometimes even causes harm to other kids.

b. While in school: An obedient student gets along with classmates and enjoys learning in school, unlike bullies who get into trouble. Obedience to parents leads to respect and obedience to school authorities such as the principal, teachers and staff.

c. As adults: A person who grew up obedient to parents will also respect authorities in the workplace. Because of this, they are able to perform well and do good in their jobs, winning the favor of their superiors and peers. They also follow the rules and therefore avoid danger (ex. fights with other people, car crash due to disobedience to traffic rules and the like).

Obeying God’s Delegated Authorities

Indeed, obedience to our parents and guardians is just a start. God expects us to obey His other delegated authorities such as those in school (ex. teachers) and in the community (ex. government officials, police officers, etc.) Hebrews 13:17a tells us,“Obey your leaders and submit to their authority. They keep watch over you as men who must give an account.”Obey Week 2 coloring page

PRAYER

Our Father in heaven, thank you for reminding us today about honoring our parents by obeying them. Help us to be obedient to the authorities you have placed before us, that we may live a life of blessing and so that our lives will also bless others. In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.

OBEDIENCE

Week 1: The Way of Obedience

Memory Verse:

Preschool – Grades 1-3: “Observe the commands of the Lord your God, walking in obedience to him and revering him.” – Deuteronomy 8:6

 Grades 4 and up: “Observe the commands of the Lord your God, walking in obedience to him and revering him. For the Lord your God is bringing you into a good land—a land with brooks, streams, and deep springs gushing out into the valleys and hills; a land with wheat and barley, vines and fig trees, pomegranates, olive oil and honey; a land where bread will not be scarce and you will lack nothing; a land where the rocks are iron and you can dig copper out of the hills.”- Deuteronomy 8:6-9

LESSON:

Story: Adam and Eve disobey God

Adam and Eve were the very first persons in the earth. God made them so he could be friends with them. God created the world (review days of creation) so that they would have a home were God could fellowship with them. They were surrounded with all good things – the plants and trees, animal friends, the sun, moon and stars to give them light – and more importantly, God gave Adam and Eve His blessing to rule the earth. God also gave Adam His command, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will surely die.” God gave this command because He loved Adam and Eve and did not want them to be separated from Him and come to any harm.

But the serpent tricked them and tempted them to eat the fruit which God had forbidden them to eat. Adam and Eve listened to the voice of the serpent and disobeyed God. They chose to listen to the serpent’s voice and not to God’s voice.

When Adam and Eve disobeyed God, they committed SIN. Sin separates us from God because God is holy and pure and sin cannot be near him. Sin has consequences – and it deserves punishment. Even though it made God sad, He had to do what is right and let Adam and Eve suffer the consequences of their sin so that they would learn why it was important to obey God’s voice. Adam and Eve were banished from the Garden of Eden and suffered many hardships because they became separated from God.

But God still loves Adam and Eve, and He has a plan to save them and all mankind from sin. The rest of the Bible tells us how God unfolds His amazing plan of salvation to bring back people to the perfect life He had designed for us which is to be with Him and live in harmony with each other and with all of God’s creation.

APPLICATION:

Our memory verse reminds us regarding the importance of listening to and following God’s voice. In today’s world, we are surrounded with many voices – the serpent, or more clearly, Satan, continues to try to tempt and deceive us through the voice of television, the voices of wrong kinds of friends, and even the voice inside us from our own selfish desires. All these other voices lead us to harm, pain and suffering, and any happiness or enjoyment that following these voices may gain us is only temporary. Sin always has consequences, and sin deserves punishment. That is why we need to learn how to always listen to God’s voice – and God talks to us through His Word – the BIBLE. The Bible tells us how to live according to God’s perfect will and purpose. Some have said it is like our “operating manual” which was written by the Creator Himself.

B – Basic

I – Instructions

B – Before

L – Leaving

E – Earth

1 John 5: 3-5 tells us, “In fact, this is love for God: to keep his commands. And his commands are not burdensome, for everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith. Who is it that overcomes the world? Only the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God.”

As we hear and obey God’s Word, we learn how to be free from the penalty of sin (we receive the gift salvation by grace through faith in Jesus Christ), we are given the power over sin (we receive the gift of the Holy Spirit who helps us overcome temptations and trials) and eventually, we will be free from the presence of sin (we receive the gift of eternal life).

Indeed, when we follow JESUS and observe His commands, we experience His blessing and favor and all the wonders of His amazing love.

PRAYER:

Father God, we thank You for Your Word, the lamp for our feet and the light to our path, to guide us to follow Your ways and lead us to Your purposes. Please help us with the Holy Spirit to read and understand your Word – the Bible, and give us the grace to obey Your commands. Help us to always listen to Your voice and not other voices, for we know, Lord, that Your voice is the one that will lead us to your plans which are always good. Thank You, Dear Lord, for your amazing love. In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.

OPTIONAL ACTIVITY: 

We made a DIY traffic light which we used to introduce the importance of obeying rules. This can be a good ice-breaker or even used for a game of “Stop-and-Go!” after the lesson.

2014-06-26

Materials Used:

  1. 1 Tissue Box
  2. 1 Aluminum foil box (for the stand)
  3. Aluminum foil
  4. Glue
  5. Transparent tape
  6. Cellophane (green, yellow and red)

I just dismantled the tissue box, glued aluminum foil all over it, then cut out the circles in front and a rectangle at the back. Then the cellophane was taped on the inside before the box was pieced together again using tape. We also covered the whole aluminum box with foil and taped it into position. The rectangle hole at the back was for putting a flashlight inside so that we could play “Stop-and Go!”

Fruits of the Spirit: LESSON 2 PART 4 – Joy (Psalm 33:3)

LESSON: JOY – How do we express our joy?

Memory Verse:

Sing to him a new song; play skillfully, and shout for joy.” – Psalm 33:3

Lesson Presentation:

There is a difference between happiness and joy. Happiness is something we experience for a moment and is often short lived. Joy is eternal. It comes only as a result of living a life of praise. Praise comes as a result of a heart that is overflowing with joy — it teaches us to be joyful and thankful regardless of our circumstances. It prepares us for God’s service and helps us to see beyond our present circumstances to the immense possibilities that are ours through faith in Jesus Christ.[i]

The Bible teaches 7 types of praise. This praise can happen at home, work, in the car or during the worship service. Praise is a very important part of our relationship with God.  God inhabits our praise and we should not be shy in our praise, for our praise glorifies God.[ii]

  1. Yadah (yaw-daw’) – This is the demonstration of our love and submission to the Lord by the raising of our hands.  Lifting your hands to the Lord in total submission and devotion. It’s like a child extending his hands high above their heads with a desire to be held.[iii]
  2. Towdah (to-daw’) – This is the sacrifice of praise.  Praising the Lord, even if you don’t feel like praising the Lord.  Praising the Lord even though you are going through many trials in your life.  Lifting up your hand as an offering of praise.
  3. Barak (baw-rak’) This means to bow or kneel down humbly before the Lord.  To be completely overwhelmed by His majesty and bow at His feet in submission and honor to the Lord.
  4. Tehillah (tel-hil-law’) – This one is the best.  It is the combination of singing, shouting, dancing, clapping and rejoicing before the Lord. It’s spontaneous singing straight from our hearts to God.
  5. Zamar (zaw-mar’) – It’s celebrating in song and music, playing any instrument for the glory of God.
  6. Halal (haw-lal’) – This means to be so full of enthusiasm of the wonders of the Lord that you express it in dancing and laughing and twirling before the Lord without caring what other people say.
  7. Shabach (Shaw-bakh’) – This means to shout.  Praise to the Lord given in the form of a shout. Lifting your voice unto the Lord, giving praise for what He has done and what He is going to do.

Fruits of the Spirit: LESSON 1 PART 3 – Joy (Nehemiah 8:10b)

LESSON: JOY

Memory Verse:

“Do not grieve, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.”– Nehemiah 8:10b

 Bible Background: Nehemiah 8:5-12

  1. Nehemiah lived at a time when Israel was slowly returning from exile, and he was a cupbearer for King Artaxerxes. He received news that even after the temple was fixed, the walls of Jerusalem still lay in ruins, and this made him very sad. In his heart he felt that God called him to do something about it, so he prayed. After that, he got permission from the King to rebuild the walls and the King even sent him with a letter to get wood from the king’s forest to be used to repair the gates.
  2. Nehemiah repaired the walls with the help of the Jews who willingly gave their time and effort to this task. There were those who tried to stop them and even threatened to attack them, and it even came to a point when only half of the men worked on the walls because the other half guarded the area, and the builders had a sword on their belts, always ready to defend themselves. It was a big job, seemingly impossible, but they finished it in a record-breaking 52 days because the people worked with all their heart and they had the blessing of the Lord.
  3. From start to finish, Nehemiah proved to be a man of prayer, and he always asked for the Lord’s guidance, wisdom and protection for completing the work. When the job was finished, Nehemiah gathered the people to celebrate. They asked Ezra, the priest, to bring out the Book of the Law of Moses, because the people who came from exile have not had a chance to hear these words for a very, very long time. Ezra – a teacher of the law, and the Levites who were servants in the temple, read the Words of God and explained them in simple language so that all who were present could understand its meaning.
  4. As the people heard the Law of Moses, the lifted their hands and responded, “Amen!” and bowed and worshipped the Lord. They realized how sinful they had become because of they failed to obey God’s laws, and they cried and were very sorry for what they had done. But Nehemiah and the Levites calmed the people and told them that this was a day of celebration; a time to share to those in need; a day holy unto the Lord, and that they must not be sad, “for the joy of the Lord is their strength.”

Reflection Points:

Truly, “the joy of the Lord is our strength.” God was pleased that the people realized their sins and were sorry, and Nehemiah assured them that it was actually a time for rejoicing, because where there is repentance, then forgiveness and restoration can begin. Through the reading of the Word, the people realized they had a big problem – sin – but there was something bigger that the bible reveals – that the love of God can wash away our sins! Indeed, there is a reason to have joy because God is willing and able to cleanse our hearts, save us from our sins and give us a chance to start a new life that is victorious in Christ Jesus! Now that is a wonderful reason to have joy!

WORD STUDY:

  1. exile – forced to leave their home country
  2. cupbearer – a high official in the king’s court; serves wine to the king
  3. temple – the equivalent of  a church building in bible times
  4. Jerusalem – central city of Jewish worship
  5. Book of the Law of Moses – most likely the “Torah” or “Pentateuch”;” the first five books in the bible, namely Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy.
  6. Levites – a member of the Hebrew tribe from the family of Levi, son of Jacob, and they served as priests in the temple.

 Nehemiah 8:5-12

5 Ezra opened the book. All the people could see him because he was standing above them; and as he opened it, the people all stood up. 6 Ezra praised the Lord, the great God; and all the people lifted their hands and responded, “Amen! Amen!” Then they bowed down and worshiped the Lord with their faces to the ground.

7 The Levites—Jeshua, Bani, Sherebiah, Jamin, Akkub, Shabbethai, Hodiah, Maaseiah, Kelita, Azariah, Jozabad, Hanan and Pelaiah—instructed the people in the Law while the people were standing there. 8 They read from the Book of the Law of God, making it clear[a] and giving the meaning so that the people understood what was being read.

9 Then Nehemiah the governor, Ezra the priest and teacher of the Law, and the Levites who were instructing the people said to them all, “This day is holy to the Lord your God. Do not mourn or weep.” For all the people had been weeping as they listened to the words of the Law.

10 Nehemiah said, “Go and enjoy choice food and sweet drinks, and send some to those who have nothing prepared. This day is holy to our Lord. Do not grieve, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.”

11 The Levites calmed all the people, saying, “Be still, for this is a holy day. Do not grieve.”

12 Then all the people went away to eat and drink, to send portions of food and to celebrate with great joy, because they now understood the words that had been made known to them.

Aug 5 2013 - Psalm 37 5 Coloring pageB copy

Fruits of the Spirit: LESSON 2 PART 2 – Joy (Psalm 37:4)

LESSON: JOY

Memory Verse: “Delight yourself in the LORD and he will give you the desires of your heart.” – Psalm 37:4

Bible Story: 2 Kings 4:8-17: THE SHUNAMMITE WOMAN AND ELISHA

Lesson Presentation:

What does “Delight yourself in the Lord” mean? This verse tells us that we are to find JOY in pleasing God. It implies putting God first in our lives and living our lives the way he would want us to.

  1. A good example of a person who delighted herself in the Lord is the Shunammite woman. The Shunammite woman was not a member of the chosen people called Israelites, but like the Good Samaritan, she did not hesitate to show compassion for a Jew. She saw Elisha as a man of God and felt in her heart a desire to bless him by providing him with food every time he passed by their village. After some time, she thought it would be good to build a room for Elisha so that he would have a comfortable place to stay in whenever he travelled to Shunem. She acted out of love for her neighbor and this pleased the Lord.
  2. The Shunammite woman did all these good things for Elisha out of the goodness of her heart, without expecting or asking for anything in return. In fact, when Elisha asked her what he could do for her to show his gratitude, the Shunammite woman basically said she didn’t need anything because she was content to have a home with her people. It was Elisha’s servant, Gehazi, who revealed that the Shunammite woman had no child.  And we know by her reaction that it was an innermost desire of her heart to have a child that she did not want to have her hopes raised if she wasn’t going to have one.
  3. Truly, we should not do good things so that others will repay us, but instead GLADLY show kindness to others out of the goodness in our hearts because this delights God. Remember that the 2nd greatest commandment is to love our neighbor. In the case of the Shunammite woman, when she showed genuine love and compassion for Elisha the prophet, the Lord saw her heart. And through Elisha, God blessed the Shunammite woman with the desire of her heart — a son.
  4. In our daily lives, when we show genuine love and compassion for other people, especially when we SERVE GLADLY and GIVE CHEERFULLY, we are delighting ourselves in the Lord. And though we do not do good deeds to be rewarded, we often find ourselves being blessed in one way or another because God is faithful and wants to bless his children who please Him.
  5. When our delight is the Lord, then OUR HEART’S GREATEST DESIRE IS TO BE WITH HIM, and so more than any material possession or earthly gift, it is his loving presence in our lives that is the greatest blessing we do receive.

SCRIPTURE READING:

2 Kings 4:8-17: THE SHUNAMMITE WOMAN AND ELISHA

8 One day Elisha went to Shunem. And a well-to-do woman was there, who urged him to stay for a meal. So whenever he came by, he stopped there to eat. 9 She said to her husband, “I know that this man who often comes our way is a holy man of God. 10 Let’s make a small room on the roof and put in it a bed and a table, a chair and a lamp for him. Then he can stay there whenever he comes to us.”

11 One day when Elisha came, he went up to his room and lay down there. 12 He said to his servant Gehazi, “Call the Shunammite.” So he called her, and she stood before him. 13 Elisha said to him, “Tell her, ‘You have gone to all this trouble for us. Now what can be done for you? Can we speak on your behalf to the king or the commander of the army?’”

She replied, “I have a home among my own people.”

14 “What can be done for her?” Elisha asked.

Gehazi said, “She has no son, and her husband is old.”

15 Then Elisha said, “Call her.” So he called her, and she stood in the doorway. 16 “About this time next year,” Elisha said, “you will hold a son in your arms.”

“No, my lord!” she objected. “Please, man of God, don’t mislead your servant!”

17 But the woman became pregnant, and the next year about that same time she gave birth to a son, just as Elisha had told her.

Aug 5 2013 - Psalm 37 5 Coloring pageB copy

Fruits of the Spirit: LESSON 2 PART 1 – Joy (1 Corinthians 13:6)

LESSON: JOY

Memory Verse:

“Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.” – 1 Corinthians 13:6

Lesson Presentation:

  1. When we say “rejoice,” what other words come into mind? Some might give any one of these:
    1. Laughter
    2. Tickling
    3. Something funny
    4. Jokes
    5. Parties
    6. Having fun
    7. Celebration
    8. happy

2. In this verse which talks mainly about LOVE, it is said that we are to “rejoice with the truth.” As a fruit of the spirit, JOY is directly connected to the main fruit which is GOD’S LOVE. This means loving the truth and standing up for the truth gives us reason to rejoice.  True joy is not merely about laughing and having fun – it is about having God’s love inside you to guide you to believe and stand up for the truth from God’s Word. HONESTY and INTEGRITY are important traits of a believer of Christ.

Do not delight in evil

We should REJOICE with the truth:

We should not find any reason to be joyful when something bad happens to anyone, even when it happens to bad people. (ex. Somebody trips over a rock or toy) When somebody gets hurt, our response would be to offer help, if possible. This is the truth that we should rejoice in: Jesus showed us how to love and not to cause hurt (Luke 6:31). When we show a loving response, we rejoice in this truth.
Jokes that make fun of others and hurt their feelings is not something we should be happy about.  (ex. Jokes about fat people or about disabilities) The truth is that God made everyone special and unique; each person is “wonderfully made” (Psalm 139:14). When we respect and care for each other’s feelings, we are rejoicing in this truth.
Somebody else gets the blame for something bad that you did you’re your brother gets blamed for breaking a vase which you broke) Even if nobody finds out we made a mistake, when we don’t admit it and ask for forgiveness, we are in fact lying, and we know that the Bible tells us that to lie is a sin. We should rejoice in the truth that “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9)
You found a P1000 bill on the floor and since nobody else was around, you put it in your pocket. You now have money to buy a new toy. When we find something valuable, we should make every effort to find the owner and return it. “Finders keepers; losers weepers” was never God’s way. We should rejoice in the truth that when we respect and care about other people’s things, we are honoring God.

L2P1_FruitSpirit_Coloring copy

I’ve been writing some bible lesson plans for our school and for the whole academic year 2013-2014, we’ll be focusing on the Fruits of the Spirit from Galatians 5:22-23. The lessons are adaptable for all ages. Feel free to use the lesson plans, some of which are also inspired by other writings I’ve found on the net as I researched on the topics. The bible coloring pages are also from the net and the links are included for your reference. I’ll link all of the lessons to the page “Free Bible Lessons”   for easier reference. May all these be used to spread God’s Word and may all the glory and praise be for the Lord our God now and forevermore! Be blessed!