Absalom’s life

Hello again! Today’s story is pieced from 2 Samuel 15-23.

pride

 

Absalom, David’s son had killed his brother and run away. After a long time, David brought him back. But Absalom was not happy. He wanted more power. He was a very fancy guy. He had big flow hair, and he loved fancy clothes and big chariots. He was a smooth talker and he started acting as a judge and helping the people with their problems and arguments. All the people began to love how cool he was.

After several years, he decided HE wanted to be king! He took David’s palace and servants and many many people followed him and decided he SHOULD be king!

David was worried. He took a few men with him, and David ran away (so Absalom wouldn’t kill him!) The priests sons worked as spies. They stayed near Absalom and would report back to David what was going on. David had a special servant go to Absalom and confuse him. Absalom asked his best advisors what he should do about David and they told him to go ahead and attack David, but David’s spy went in and confused Absalom and told him to wait. That gave David the chance to attack instead! But he made the men promise NOT to hurt his son, Absalom. (Because even when kids make BIG mistakes, their moms and dads still love them and want the best for them!! And especially like how God loves us even when we sin!)

David’s men didn’t want David to get hurt, so they told him to stay behind. The armies went to fight and as Absalom was riding his donkey, his big, flowy hair got stuck in a tree and he was just hanging there. Two of David’s men found him and the first one would not kill Absalom, like David had said…but Joab, David’s lead soldier decided HE would kill Absalom. So he did and when David found out, he was very very sad.

Absalom thought he was the best and coolest ever. He only cared about shiny, expensive things and doing what HE wanted. He did not listen to wisdom…from his father or his advisors. He just took the advice that he WANTED to hear. He was not very wise.  Proverbs 16:18 says, “Pride comes before a fall.” Or in the message version it says “First pride, then the crash—the bigger the ego, the harder the fall.” That is certainly Absalom’s story. But it doesn’t have to be ours. We can remember to put God first!

Here is a video from PursueGOD Kids.

Thanks for joining us again!

Absalom part 1

Hello again. We’re starting a few days on Absalom, David’s son. For the ages this blog is intended for (preschool/early childhood) i will be adjusting a few things while trying very hard to not alter the words of God. The intent of the story/God’s heart will still be present though i am leaving out/softening a few details.

2-Samuel-14

The first part of this story is from 2 Samuel 13 and 14.

King David had a daughter named Tamar. David had many children, and two of Tamar’s brothers were named Amnon and Absalom. One day, Amnon attacked his sister Tamar. (This was a horrible choice of course. If your kids ask why, i explained because he loved her and was mad he couldn’t marry his sister.) Tamar was very sad and told her brother Absalom who promised to protect her. Absalom was so mad he didn’t speak AT ALL to Amnon again.

Until…one day….it was time to take all the sheep and shear them (like give them a haircut and then they turn the wool into clothes and blankets and things). Absalom took some helpers with him and he also wanted to take Amnon. David said, “He doesn’t need to go?!” But Absalom insisted and while they were gone, he had his helpers kill Amnon.

King David was so sad when he found out Amnon was dead and Absalom got scared of what David or others might do, so he ran away. He was gone a very long time until Joab (King David’s lead soldier) knew the King missed Absalom and he came up with a plan to get Absalom back. Joab found a old woman and told her to go the king and say this:

“Oh your majesty! I need your help! My husband died and i only had two sons left, but one killed the other! Now i only have one son left, but everyone is so mad that he killed his brother that they want to kill him too!? Please make an official ‘King Decree’ to keep him safe so i won’t be ALL ALONE!”

King David agreed.

Then the woman also said “But haven’t you done the same thing with Absalom? He is running for his life! People want to kill him because he killed Amnon. You should forgive him too! God doesn’t want banished people to stay banished! He always makes a way to bring them back home!”

David knew Joab had put the woman up to it, so he sent Joab to get Absalom and bring him back. It took a long time for David and Absalom to speak again. Even though Absalom was allowed back into town, he was not welcomed with a big hug. David, unlike God who is always merciful and ready to forgive, was still pretty upset about the whole thing. (Remember everyone in the Bible except for God and Jesus, even good leaders are not perfect and do not do everything the way God would want them too. David was not very forgiving, but he did understand that God WANTED him to bring Absalom back and that he SHOULD forgive him.)

God DOESN’T want banished people to stay away. When Adam and Eve had to leave the garden because they sinned, He taught them about sacrifices and how the blood of a pure animal could cover their sin so they could be right with God again. And then, we too sin and are supposed to be separated from God forever, but God made a way! (Not us, but our King, God, made the way!) He sent Jesus to die on the cross to take the place of our sin so we could be with Him forever, clean and perfect and without sin because Jesus took all the yucky sin. God, like a good king, makes a way to bring us to back to Him, no matter what ugly things we do. And He welcomes us to Himself right away.

 

This is not the end of the story for David and Absalom. Their story is very up and down, full of bad choices and selfish interest, but we see the love of God through it all. Keep reading the next few days as we learn more. Thanks for joining us!

David and Bathsheba

Hi all! After a break for a long while :0) we are back with some NEW stories. We have had a pretty good overall cover of Bible stories for littles, but this year we have some bigger kids in the house and some extra time in the year so we’ll be delving in deeper and covering a lot more of the Old Testament.

Today’s story is from 2 Samuel 11 and 12. (Some of it will be glossed over a little. If your kids are old enough you can read through the whole thing. In our house, we’ll be censoring a smidge until they’re a bit older. The details aren’t as necessary as the heart David displayed, his disobedience and repentance.)

uriah

 

David (shepherd, musician, fighter of Goliath and chosen “man after God’s own heart”) was now King. In the spring, David sent Joab (his lead soldier) out with the army. David stayed in Jerusalem while the army was fighting and conquering.

One evening David got up from his bed and walked around on the roof of the palace. From the roof he saw a woman taking a bath. (They didn’t have pipes in their houses back then to take a bath in the bathroom.) The woman he saw was VERY beautiful, and David sent someone to find out who she was! The man said, “She is Bathsheba, the wife of Uriah the Hittite.” (My kids found it very funny that David saw her taking a bath and her name is BATHsheba hehe.) Then David sent messengers to go get her. Now, he was the King so she couldn’t say no or else she’d be in BIG trouble?! So she went to David and he decided HE wanted to marry her. (Even though she was already married!!! NOT a good choice, David.) 

David decided to get rid of Uriah. Uriah was one of the soldiers fighting in the army. So David wrote a letter to Joab and said, “Put Uriah out in front where the fighting is fiercest. Then everyone move back from him so he will be hit and die.” He was going to have Uriah killed so HE could marry Bathsheba!

So Joab did what David requested and when it came time to fight again, Uriah did die.

When Bathsheba heard that her husband was dead, she was very sad and cried for him. After her time of mourning was over, David had her brought to his house, and she became his wife and she became pregnant with a baby boy. But God was NOT happy. 

The Lord sent Nathan the prophet to talk to David. (Remember, a prophet is someone who talks to God and then tells people what God wants them to know.) When Nathan came to David, he told him a story that goes like this, “There were two men in a certain town, one very rich and the other very poor. The rich man had a LOT of sheep and cattle, but the poor man had nothing except one little lamb he had bought. He raised it, and it grew up with him and his children. It shared his food, drank from his cup and even slept in his arms. The little baby sheep was like a daughter to him. One day a traveler came to the rich man, but the rich man did not want to take one of his own sheep or cattle to cook into a meal for the traveler. Instead, he took the one little lamb that belonged to the poor man and gave it to the visitor.”

David was angry and said to Nathan, “The man who did this must die! He must pay for that little lamb four times over, because he did such a thing and had no pity.”

Then Nathan said to David, “YOU are that man! You had EVERYTHING and Uriah didn’t have much….just a wife that he LOVED. But you who had EVERYTHING, you killed him and took his wife. God says to you: ‘I made you king over Israel, and I saved you from Saul. I gave you your great house, and all of Israel and Judah. And IF all this had been too little, I would have given you even more. Why did you do such an evil thing!? You killed Uriah the Hittite with the sword and took his wife to be your own wife. Now, there will be severe consequences for what you have done.'”

Then David realized what he had done and he said to Nathan, “I have sinned against the Lord!” David was very sorry and wanted God to forgive him.

Nathan replied, “The Lord has taken away your sin. He will forgive you. BUT because you made SUCH a bad choice and had Uriah killed so you could have his wife, the baby boy you have will die.”

After Nathan had gone home, the Lord made the baby boy very sick.  David pleaded with God for the child. He fasted and prayed and cried. Everyone tried very hard to get David to feel better but he cried and prayed and cried and prayed, asking God to help his son get better. 

But, on the seventh day the baby died. David’s attendants were afraid to tell him that the child was dead, for they thought, “He was so upset BEFORE…how can we now tell him the child is dead? He may do something CRAZY now.”

David noticed that everyone was whispering, and he realized the child was dead. “Is the child dead?” he asked.

“Yes,” they replied, “he is dead.”

Then David got up from the ground. After he had washed and changed his clothes, he went into the house of the Lord (like church) and worshiped God. Then he went to his own palace, and at his request they served him food, and he ate.

 His servants asked him, “Um….why are you acting this way? While the child was alive, you prayed and cried, but now that the child is dead, you get up and eat!?”

David answered, “While the child was still alive, I thought, ‘Who knows? Maybe God will be gracious to me and let the child live.’ But now that he is dead, why should I go on fasting? It won’t bring him back. God has punished me.”

Before long, David and Bathsheba had another baby boy, named Solomon. He would grow up to be the king after David and we will learn more about him later.

 

So David, even God’s chosen man David, sinned. Because we ALL disobey God sometimes. And even though God forgave David when he was sorry, David still had consequences for  disobeying God’s rules. It was a really bad thing David did and there was a REALLY hard consequence too! God made some good from it too though, He would raise up Solomon to be the wisest king ever and Solomon would build the temple for God. We must always remember that God’s ways are the best ways and we should always try to obey Him.

Here’s an animated version from LC Lifekids: watch here

See also Veggie Tales: King George and the Ducky

 

 

Thanks for joining us. More to come soon, thanks!

David dances

Hi all! Tonight’s story is from 2 Samuel 6.

daviddances

Do you remember the ark of the covenant…that special box of God’s power? It was still away from the church where it was supposed to be. The Philistines had taken it a long time ago and brought it back, but it was just at some guy’s house. (His name was Abinadab and he and his family had been taking good care of it, but it was supposed to be in the tabernacle.)

David, now that he was king, decided NOW was the time to bring it back where it belonged.  David and a LOT of helpers went to the man’s house and they very carefully carried the box just the way God wanted. They weren’t supposed to touch the box…only the poles it rested on.

ark

But along the way, they almost dropped it and one of the guys reached out to help the ark so it wouldn’t fall and he died right then and there! That may seem mean, since he was trying to help…but God had been very clear: the people were NOT to touch the ark. David was so so scared and so so sad that he said “No more. We’ll leave the ark right here.” They were right by another man’s house named Obed-edom. The ark stayed there at that man’s house for 3 months and then someone told King David “God has been very good to Obed-edom since he has been taking care of the ark of the covenant.” So David decided maybe they could try again.

This time, they did carry the ark back into the city to the tabernacle and everyone was SOOOOO happy! The special box that showed all the people God’s power was BACK! They played music and danced and sang songs, some people cried! Oh they were SO happy! (It’s like if you lost your FAVORITE stuffed animal, or if you got lost from your mom or dad and then you FOUND your favorite thing, or your mom or dad and all went back home together…how HAPPY that would be!)

Even King David was so happy HE was dancing. But his wife was not happy. “That’s not very dignified. YOU are the king. You shouldn’t be out there being silly like THOSE people. You are supposed to be important….in charge…you should not be dancing.”

But David said, “Ha! I was dancing for God! I remember all the good things God has done for me. He made me king, He chose ME! I don’t care HOW silly I look!  I want to praise God!”

Do you know there’s no wrong way to praise God? To thank Him for the things He has done for us? Sometimes at church we talk to God to say “thank you” or we sing songs or play music–you can draw a picture, you can write your own songs or dance as silly as you want. You can celebrate God however you want…and it doesn’t matter HOW silly you look! God LOVES a thankful heart–when we praise Him, it makes Him so happy.

What are you thankful for today? What do you want to celebrate about God? Now take some time with your family to praise God–with music, art, prayer, dancing…whichever way you want!

Thanks for joining us! Love to you all!

The New King

Welcome back. Today’s story is from 1 Samuel 31-2 Samuel 5.  Today’s story has a LOT of people making bad, sneaky choices.

davidking

 

The Philistines attacked Israel (again) and King Saul and his boys were helping to fight. Three of Saul’s boys died and Saul was so sad, he fell on his sword so he could die too. Jonathan (David’s best friend) died that day too.

When David found out, he was very very sad. The man who told David Saul and Jonathan were dead said that HE killed Saul. That man lied. David answered, “Why did you kill the man God put in charge as king? Weren’t you scared to kill the man God chose?” Then David had that man killed too. The man lied…and then he died because of his lie.

Now, if you remember, there were 12 tribes (like big family groups) in Israel. Only one of the groups, Judah, wanted David to be their king. The rest wanted Saul’s son to be king. He has a long, confusing name: Ishbosheth. For a long time the people fought over who they thought should be king. A lot of people died. Which was kind of silly because God already said He wanted DAVID to be king…but the people didn’t listen. The leader of David’s army and the leader of Ishbosheth’s army fought and fought. The leader of Ishbosheth’s army, Abner, killed the brother of the leader of David’s army. So the leader of David’s army, Joab, killed the OTHER leader. See ALL these people making bad choices?? They ALL forgot that you’re not supposed to be mean to people just because they are mean to you. Lots of people kept dying because they were all being sneaky and lying and forgetting to obey God.

David and his army got stronger and stronger and Saul’s son and his army got weaker and weaker. Finally one day two men killed Ishbosheth (which did not make David happy–he was sad Ishbosheth had died). Then all the people decided David would be their new king.

David made a covenant (like a promise) to the people of Israel to be a good king and all the people decided yes, he would be the new king over all the families in Israel. David will make his own bad choices too. When we read the Bible there aren’t just “good” people and “bad” people. EVERYONE except Jesus makes bad choices, disobeys God and sins. And LOTS of people in today’s story made bad choices too.

God still had good plans for His people though and He put David in charge because David had a heart like God’s. He wasn’t happy when people died. David didn’t want the people to fight. But now all of Israel was following him and we’ll learn more about King David next time. Thanks for joining us, love to you all.

David the Shepherd

Hi all…today’s lesson is a variance on David the shepherd. Today’s lesson is more focused whereas last year’s lesson was more broad. (Found HERE.)

Do you remember what David was doing before God said he would be the new king? He was taking care of the sheep! That’s called being a shepherd. What kinds of things do you think a shepherd has to do? (Feed the sheep, get them water, keep them safe, show them where to go, keep them healthy.) The shepherd loves his sheep.

When David got bigger, he was like a shepherd to the people of Israel. He became king and he took care of the people just like he took care of the sheep! He kept them safe, fighting in battles, and he made sure they had food and water. He led the people to God and he obeyed God which helped remind the people to obey God too! (2 Samuel 5:2, 1 Chronicles 11:2, Ezekiel 34:11-23, Psalm 78:70-72)

David would get married and have a baby boy. And that boy would grow up and have a boy and he would have a boy and on and on for 14 times, until another baby boy was born–Jesus. Jesus is like a shepherd too. He leads us to God and He keeps us safe. David wrote a lot of songs and in those songs, David called God “our Shepherd” a lot. (Psalm 23:1-3, 28:9, 95:7, 79:13, 100:3)

He takes care of us…and even more important than making sure we have the THINGS we need, He takes care of our hearts. Jesus doesn’t just take care of us, He loves us, just like a shepherd loves his sheep. (Isaiah 40:11, 53:6, Micah 7:4, Jeremiah 31:10)

Sometimes if a wolf or other scary animal would come and try to eat one of the sheep, the shepherd would fight the animal–even if he died..he would try to fight to save his sheep. Do you remember Jesus died for us? Sin (anything that disobeys God) wants to have our hearts…which keeps us away from God forever…but Jesus, the Good Shepherd, fought and died to save us. (Isaiah 53:6, John 10:11). But He didn’t stay dead–because unlike a regular shepherd, Jesus, the Good Shepherd, is stronger than sin and death. Not EVEN dying can keep Jesus away from us or away from loving us.

God gave His people in Israel a good shepherd, David to lead them and protect them. But later He would give ALL of us Jesus, the Good Shepherd (the best shepherd of all) to love us, protect us, and save our hearts.

 

For today’s craft, we cut out a sheep’s head and then glued some fluffy cotton balls to make a sheep.

 

Thanks again for joining us. Love to you all!