We mixed things up a bit this month because as much as I love tradition, kids get bored and disinterested when things feel the same all the time. So for this month’s viewing of What’s In The Bible?, we watched while cooking and eating dinner. The kids helped me in the kitchen while learning about Israel’s divided kingdom then we enjoyed a carpet picnic dinner of one of our favorites: grilled chicken salad. If you are following along with us, consider trying a different viewing situation this month. Better yet, invite your kids to come up with a fun way to use What’s In The Bible? in your next family night.
Volume 6, A Nation Divided follows Israel and Judah as they go through 39 kings and queens! We learned that some of the kings follow God, while the others try to destroy God’s people. But God sends prophets like Elijah, Elisha and Isaiah to remind his people of his faithfulness and his rescue plan.
I’m not going to lie, these episodes are full of information and details about a very complex and important part of Israel’s history. At first watch, it made my head spin a little, so you can imagine what my kids were thinking. But Phil sums up this portion of the Bible in one simple statement,
Kings doing really bad things and prophets saying, “Stop it, or there is going to be trouble!”
Sounds a little bit like how things go around our house except my kids aren’t kings and I’m no prophet…
Not every detail of the Bible and Christianity will be easy for kids to grasp. Actually, most will be incredibly complex and you’ll often wonder why you should bother. But I am a huge believer in building a faith culture in our homes while planting seeds of truth. With continued nurturing and watering, these seeds will grow into a beautiful faith in the lives of your family. So keep going! It’s totally worth it!
What we found in Volume 6, A Nation Divided:
- God’s Promises
- The Kingdom Divided into Israel and Judah
- Fall of Jerusalem
- Elijah and Elisha
- Elijah and the 450 Prophets of Baal
As we discuss the nation of Israel divided in volume 6, here are a few things we are keeping in mind:
- We are almost ½ way through the series and at this point, it’s important to focus in on the great review Phil and friends do at the beginning of each DVD. Our children need to be reminded of the greater Story that runs through each book of the Bible. This month, we’ll spend more time going back through what we’ve learned so far.
- Kids may understand the idea of consequences already but seeing the severe consequences experienced in the Bible may become confusing or scary to children. God chose Israel as his people to show the rest of the world his holiness. But Israel wasn’t behaving like a chosen nation. If God didn’t give them consequences for their actions, the rest of the world wouldn’t see and understand what it means to glorify God.
- Although presented in a fun and engaging way, the discussion of Israel’s 39 kings with all their funny names may be a bit much for some kids. We’ll remind our children that it’s not as important to remember every silly name as it is to think about the difference between the kings that followed God and those that did not. We will continue to ask ourselves the question Phil and friends asked in DVD 5, Which type of king would you want to be?
A few discussion ideas we’ll be using this month:
- Consequences – Although Solomon started out as a wise king, he sinned by worshiping idols and putting his power and possessions above God. When the kingdom of Israel divided into the northern region and Judah in the southern region, this was a consequence of his sin. Although the results of our actions do not seem this big today, we still receive consequences when we sin or choose our own way instead of God’s way.
- God’s Faithfulness – God told Solomon he was going to make Jeroboam king of Israel but because God is faithful, he allowed one of Solomon’s sons, Rehoboam to become king over Judah or the southern portion of the nation of Israel. God also kept his promise (the Davidic covenant) that one of David’s descendants would remain a ruler over Israel. This is one great example of how God keeps the promises he makes to his children. As children of God, we can trust that he will keep his promises to us too!
- Authority and Leadership – At times in our lives, we may encounter a leader that is less than ideal…a tough teacher, coach or an unkind adult. Israel went through 39 kings, all different and many that were really bad leaders. God calls us to be respectful of those in authority over us but he does not want us to compromise what we believe. When we have a tough leader in our lives we can ask God to show us the best way to respond and discuss the situation with parents or a trusted adult.
- Idols – Throughout the Old Testament, we often see the people of Israel worshiping idols instead of God. Back then, an idol was a physical (often gold) item people created to worship. Although we probably don’t have golden calves in our living room, we still deal with idol worship today. An idol is anything we put in God’s place in our lives. When we put our things or our friends above God, we make them an idol. We can remind each other to keep God first in our lives to give him the glory he deserves.
- Prophets – As we learned earlier in the Old Testament, a prophet is someone who shares messages they receive from God. Prophets, such as Elijah and Elisha were God’s megaphone in the Old Testament. When he had something to say, he delivered his message through a faithful prophet.
- Isaiah’s Prophecy that we learn about this month is the most important prophecy of all time. This prophecy revealed the coming of the Messiah; Jesus, our Rescuer.
For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Isaiah 6:9
On the 25th of this month we’ll be halfway to Christmas. Consider bringing home this exciting message of hope by hosting a family “Christmas in June” party. Break out a few holiday decorations and make your favorite Christmas treat. Spend time remembering these words of God to a nation divided that one day soon, the Rescuer would come to help put it all back together.
Have you watched volume 6 with your family? What are some of the interesting conversations you’ve had as you’ve studied the nation of Israel?
A Nation Divided: Kings & Chronicles
In A Nation Divided, 39 kings take turns ruling the Israelites, and most of them do more harm than good. In fact, some of them even try to get rid of God’s people forever! But that can’t happen, so God sends good prophets like Elijah and Isaiah to remind the Israelites that the Lord is always with them.
Old Testament Heroes Devotional and Activity Pack
Learn even more about kings and prophets in the Old Testament Heroes Devotional and Activity Pack!
This printable pack features 25 days of devotionals and 10 new activities including a Kings of Israel crossword puzzle.
Jessica Wolstenholm is co-founder of Grace for Moms. After 15 years in the music and publishing industries, Jessica came home to be with her two small children. Although the transition from the corporate world to the playground has been an adjustment, she is learning every day to access the grace available to us through Christ as she navigates the full time job of motherhood. She is the co-author of The Pregnancy Companion: A Faith-Filled Guide for Your Journey to Motherhood and The Baby Companion: A Faith-Filled Guide for Your Journey Through Baby’s First Year. Jessica lives in Nolensville, TN with her husband, Dave and two miracle babies, Hope (6) and Joshua (3).