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17. The Bible's Big Story

25 lesson plans for children, young people and their teachers.

Lesson 17 Exiled into Babylon Bible reference – verses from Kings and Chronicles. God had warned His people what would happen if they did not live the way He wanted them to. He hated it when they worshipped other gods. The Ten Commandments, given when God’s people were brought out from Egypt at the Exodus, warned that God would judge up to four generations for the sins of worshipping the idols of other gods, Exodus 20 verses 2-6. Jeroboam was one of the worst kings of Israel – the northern kingdom. The Bible says he was the one “who sinned and led Israel into sin”.

Stop and discuss (1) Divide the class into groups of 5/6. Each group should have a Bible (hopefully every student can have their own). Explain you are going to ask some questions, the answers to which are in the Bible verses you will give out. See which group can be the first to give the right answer. Students should hold their closed Bibles in the air, with arms stretched out above their heads. Only when you give the reference after each question can they lower their arms and begin to look for the answer. 1. Hold up Bibles. Who gave the kingdom of Israel – ten tribes – to Jeroboam? 1 Kings 11 verse 31. Students look for answer and share it. 2. Hold up Bibles. For God to be with the king, what must Jeroboam be careful to do? 1 Kings 11 verse 38. Students look for answer and share it. 3. Hold up Bibles. What did Jeroboam do? 1 Kings 14 verses 14-16. Students look for answer and share it. 4. Hold up Bibles. What did Jeroboam’s son king Nadab do? 1 Kings 15 verse 25-26. Students look for answer and share it. 5. Hold up Bibles. What did his descendant king Ahab do? 1 Kings 21 verse 22. Students look for answer and share it. 6. Hold up Bibles. What did his son king Ahaziahdo? 1 Kings 22 verses 51-53. Students look for answer and share it. 7. Hold up Bibles. What did Ahab’s son king Joram do? 2 Kings 3 verses 1-3. Students look for answer and share it.


8. Hold up Bibles. Who anointed Jehu king over Israel? 2 Kings 9 verses 1-3 and 6. Students look for answer and share it. 9. Hold up Bibles. What did king Jehu do? 2 Kings 10 verses 28-31. Students look for answer and share it. 10. Hold up Bibles. What did Jehu’s son king Jehoahaz do? 2 Kings 13 verses 1-2. Students look for answer and share it. Ask every group to put into their own words how king Jeroboam, and many of his family after him, led the nation of Israel. Ask each group for a spokesman (or woman) to share their description with the whole class.

Remind the class that although God put these kings into their kingdoms, they were responsible to follow God in their own lives and in the way they led their people. If they did not honour God, God would soon be against them – just as He had said in Exodus 20 verses 2-6. The Bible shows us God is always true to His promises, even when it means Him bringing judgement on His own people.

Of course, not all of the kings were bad! We are going to see how one good king, Josiah, did NOT follow in the ways of the kings before him. He chose to follow the ways of his ancestor king David. He lived to please the Lord.

Stop and discuss (2) Ask the class to divide into their groups again, as they did earlier. In each group, some should open their Bibles to 2 Kings 22 verses 1 to 23 verse 30.

Others should open their Bibles to 2 Chronicles 34 verses 1 to 35 and 35 verses 1-27.

Every group needs to be able to read both Bible records. Ask each question in turn. If the class enjoyed holding up their Bibles earlier, get them to do it again before every question. 1. How old was Josiah when he became king? 2. What did Josiah do to please the Lord? 3. What did Josiah destroy in his land? 4. What did his men find in the ruins at the Temple of the True God? 5. When the Law was read to the king, what did he find out about God? 6. What did Josiah lead the people in making? 7. The king had a big fire. What did he burn? 8. Josiah led the people in a celebration. What were they remembering? 9. How many sheep, lambs and goats did Josiah give for the celebration? 10. Where is Josiah’s life story written down? Remind the students God has been faithful to His promises even when the kings and people have not been. God has also blessed and used good kings who have tried to lead the people His way.


558 years after the Exodus the Northern Kingdom of Israel was carried away captive by the Assyrians. About 125 years later the Southern Kingdom of Judah fell to Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon. God’s special people were prisoners taken off to far away places. The city and Temple where God placed His name were in ruins. Have two good readers read to the class one passage each.

  • This is what happened to the Northern Kingdom: 2 Kings 17 verse 7, “Samaria fell because the Israelites sinned against the Lord their God, Who had rescued them from the king of Egypt and had led them out of Egypt. They worshipped other gods …”

  • This is what happened to the SouthernKingdom: 2 Chronicles 36 verses 15-17, “The Lord, the God of their ancestors, had continued to send prophets to warn His people, because He wanted to spare them and the Temple. But they ridiculed God’s messengers, ignoring His words and laughing at His prophets, until at last the Lord’s anger against His people was so great that there was no escape. So the Lord brought the king of Babylonia to attack them”.

God deals with His people like good parents deal with their disobedient children. They are disciplined. Yet God still loves them and works to keep His promises to them if they will see the foolishness of their ways and begin to honour Him with their lives. The prophet Jeremiah gave this message of hope: read slowly and clearly:

2 Chronicles 36 verse 21, “The land will lie desolate for 70 years, to make up for the

Sabbath rest that has not been observed”. Seventy years! What would God do to keep true to His promise this time?

Answers to ‘Stop and discuss’ 1. 1. God 2. Live obeying God’s laws, to please Him 3. Sinned and led the people into sin 4. Sinned and led the people to sin, like his father 5. Made God angry by leading the people to sin 6. Worshipped Baal, following his father’s example with the same result 7. Would not stop sinning, although not as bad as his parents 8. God 9. Wiped out Baal worship, but copied Jeroboam’s sin 10. Sinned against the Lord, led Israel to sin, never giving up his evil ways.

2. 1. Eight years old, 2 Kings 22 verse 1; 2 Chronicles 34 verse 1 2. Followed David’s example, obeying God’s laws, 2 Kings 22 verse 2; 2 Chronicles 34

verse 2 3. Pagan places of worship and their altars, idols and images, 2 Chronicles 34 verses

3-7, especially verse 7 4. The book of the Law, 2 Kings 22 verse 8; 2 Chronicles 34 verse 14; (the Law God

gave to Moses)


5. God was angry because the earlier kings and people disobeyed His Law, 2 Kings

22 verse 13; 2 Chronicles 34 verse 21

6. A Covenant (solemn promise) to go back to keeping the Covenant with God from

long ago, 2 Kings 23 verse 3; 2 Chronicles 34 verse 31

7. Everything he found that was used in worshipping false gods, 2 Kings 23 verse 4

8. The Passover, 2 Kings 23 verse 21; 2 Chronicles 35 verse 1; (remember Exodus 12 as

the special people were brought out of Egypt by God)

9. 30,000, 2 Chronicles 35 verse 7

10. The History of the Kings of Israel and Judah, 2 Chronicles 35 verse 27; 2 Kings 23

verse 28 omits “Israel and”.


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