Today in The Gospel Project for Kids, your kids heard one amazing story of a talking animal. God actually gave an animal, a donkey, the ability to speak for a brief moment in order to make a point to one impromptu prophet. Balaam was hired by the king to pronounce a curse on the Israelites. Balaam headed out but his donkey kept running him into walls and crevices. After beating the donkey, Balaam heard the donkey speak. Shortly thereafter Balaam learned that he had no choice but to say what God wanted him to say and nothing else. After repeatedly blessing the Israelites instead of cursing them, Balaam lost favor with the king.
Who protected God’s people? God always protects His people. Fourteen hundred years after Balaam predicted Jesus’ birth, wise men from the east came to visit the boy Jesus.
This week in The Gospel Project for Kids, your kids learned about the aftermath of Israel’s sin when they were wandering in the wilderness. God had given the people and opportunity to obey, but again they chose not to. After much grumbling from the Israelites, God sent poisonous snakes into the ranks of the nation. God, in His gracious wisdom, gave them a way of escaping the results of the snake bite. Sin comes with consequences, but God always provides a way of salvation.
Because of our sin, we face a huge problem. Our sin leads us to be separated from God, and we deserve to die. Just like the Israelites who were healed from the poison snake bite when they looked at the snake on the pole, those who choose to see Jesus on the cross and trust in Him, will be saved from their sin.
The Gospel Project for Kids took on a spy mission this week. Spies were sent into the land of promise. They had finally arrived! The problem was most of the people who went in to spy were having problems believing that they could conquer the people who lived there. Bigger problem … God had told them they could take it, so why worry? Two of those spies, Joshua and Caleb, knew that God was true and that He would lead them to victory. The problem became helping the others see that God was true to His word.
The crowd, unfortunately, followed the dissenters who said the people of the land were too large and that Israel could not take the promised land. The people sinned. How does God respond when His people sin? Sin has a price, but God is always willing to forgive when people seek forgiveness.
Joshua and Caleb were not perfect, but they lived a life of obedience to God. Joshua would one day lead the people of Israel into the promised land. His accomplishments point to Christ’s finished work on the cross—defeating Satan, setting people free from sin, and making a way into the promised land of eternity.
This session was a new one for most boys and girls. Recall the last time you sat and read the Book of Leviticus. What does it mean? Why did God give all these rules? God gave rules for sacrifice to show people how to worship Him and how to be forgiven of the sin they had committed. Why did God require a sacrifice of blood? Simply, God is holy and because of that His forgiveness requires a sacrifice. The Book of Romans teaches us that the penalty for sin is death. The sacrifice offered stood instead for the one who had sinned.
The ultimate example of a substitution for sin is of course, Jesus Christ. Christ died on the cross for the sins of all. Christ died so that sinners wouldn’t have to die for their sin. The rules of Leviticus were given to help people know they could not live in right relationship with God apart from sacrifice. We today are free from following the rules of sacrifice because we trust in Jesus who perfectly obeyed the law. Our faith in Christ is what cleanses us from the sin in our lives.
Talk about your church with your kids. What makes your church unique? Do you meet in a traditional church building structure, or do you meet in a more temporary place? The tabernacle was built as a temporary structure used to worship God and to house His presence. God’s presence would lead the nation of Israel, and they would follow. Whenever His presence would stop, the tabernacle would be set up for worship.
The tabernacle in the Old Testament was the physical place where God’s Spirit dwelled as the Israelites journeyed to the land God had promised Abraham. The tabernacle gives us a clear picture of God’s desire to dwell with His people and to be worshiped by them. The word tabernacle means “to dwell.” To show in the New Testament God’s desire for dwelling with His people has not ended, He sent Jesus to tabernacle (dwell) with people on earth.
Count to 10 with your kids. Ask them to name one rule that you follow in your house. Ask and see if they know why they have that rule. Help your kids see the importance of rules for keeping order. Ask what they remember about the story they heard in The Gospel Project for Kids about God giving the commandments.
God had redeemed His people from slavery in Egypt. People who have been redeemed demonstrate their love for the Redeemer thorough obedience. By giving the Ten Commandments, God showed His standard for holiness. But the people could not obey the commandments perfectly; God used the law to show that people needed a Savior. God provided that Savior ultimately through the person of Jesus Christ.
The Gospel Project for Kids