I would like to spend extra time on this lesson so there is just a coloring page . The Amplified Bible has an excellent rendition of the 1 Peter passage “…Above all things have intense and unfailing love for one another, for love covers a multitude of sins [forgives and disregards the offenses of other]. Practice hospitality to one another (those of the household of faith). [Be hospitable, be a lover of strangers, with brotherly affection for the unknown guests, the foreigners, the poor, and all others who come your way who are of Christ’s body.] And [in each instance] do it ungrudgingly (cordially and graciously, without complaining but as representing Him). There are probably some heavy sighs after reading this, especially since we might be having a struggle just feeding our own family…but lets check out the life of a lady the Bible refers to as “great” and “notable”, for inspiration and encouragement. Elisha had a divine appointment with this Shunammite woman, and “just so happened” to pass by her house on his many journeys. She “constrained” (did not take no for an answer) him to stop and eat with her every time he was in the area and then had a good idea to present to her husband…” I perceive that this is a holy man of God, who passes by continually. Please let us make a little chamber on the wall; and let us set for him there a bed, and a table, a stool and a candlestick: and it shall be, when he cometh to us, that he shall turn in here.” 2 Kings 4: 9-10 This woman was incredibly blessed by God with a child and given great faith to believe the impossible when he suddenly died but I would like to focus this lesson on hospitality which was a requirement for New Testament church leaders (1 Timothy 3:2, Titus 1:8) and a virtue we are to “practice”. (Romans 12:13) How can we get kids excited about it??? Let’s show them how simple and fun it is. Explain that to get the ball rolling there needs to be an invitation. Sometimes it is intimidating to invite people to come over…there is always the chance they could say no. But keep practicing and know that we are pleasing our LORD when we walk in obedience. Then there needs to be some preparation. Bring a small meal to share with your class like bread or muffins, water, juice or tea to drink, and some fruit in season, taking into consideration any allergies…( butter, jam or cheese would be nice additions but not required) See if you can get your kids to ask their parents if they can practice hospitality by inviting a friend or two over. Talk about the things that may hinder hospitality while you are eating. Pray for success and for any concerns they may have.
Do you remember where we last left Elisha? He had counseled the king of Israel to treat the Syrian raiders mercifully , after they had been struck with blindness according to his word, and led into Samaria. ( 2 Kings 6). These mercenary raiders came no more to the land of Israel after being given a feast, but later we find Ben- Hadad, king of Syria, brought his army to besiege Samaria. The people of Samaria were being starved and King Jehoram blamed Elisha and wanted to kill him. But Elisha had good news for the king”…hear the word of the LORD”…tomorrow there would be plenty of food! Now there were four lepers at the entrance of the gate of Samaria; and they said to one another, “Why do we sit here until we die?” They reasoned that since there was no food in the city, why not go to the Syrian camp. These hungry men discovered an empty camp because the LORD had caused the Syrian hosts to hear the sound of a great army…do you think it was the same angelic army that Elisha’s servant was blessed to see? Every soldier had fled in the night for their lives, leaving behind all their belongings. These four must have been ecstatic, and after having satisfied their own appetites, and stashing provisions in hiding places, they became convicted . They rushed to the starving city to share their good news. ( We are also recipients of “life-saving” good news…are we sharing it?)
Color and cut out the figures and shield. They should measure approx. 4 1/2 inches tall. Using plain cheesecloth, and keeping it double thickness…or even quadruple thickness… cut a piece to fit within the dotted lines and shaded area of the “tent” worksheet and glue down with a glue stick. I suggest you cut a little more than you think you will need as the excess can be folded under easily…an 8 inch by 9 inch rectangle should be plenty. Glue figures and shield as shown in the sample after coloring inside of the tent. Optional: add spears which are made with twigs and silver-colored paper. For a bit of fun you might dye the cheesecloth .
I would like to thank my son, Aaron Ernst, for sharing his talent with me by drawing the figures.
Get your glitter ready, cuz the hills are alive…and not with the sound of music… they are full of horses and chariots of fire !!! When the man of God’s servant got up in the morning he found the city they were staying in surrounded by a powerful army. Elisha prayed to the Lord to allow his servant to see in the spiritual realm to prove there was nothing to be afraid of. “Fear not : for they that be with us are more than they that be with them”. Read the exciting story in 2 Kings 6 .
It always bothered me that the text was crooked so here is the work sheet with annotated text !
In Luke 4:27 we read our Lord’s words “…And many lepers were in Israel in the time of Elisha the prophet, and none of them were cleansed except Naaman the Syrian.” Naaman was the captain of the host of the king of Syria, a mighty man of valour…but he was a leper. A little maidservant , carried away captive from the land of Israel, brought a ray of sunshine to Naaman’s household with her words of hope …” if my lord were with the prophet that is in Samaria, he would heal him of his leprosy.” So in 2 Kings 5 we read that Naaman sought to be healed by traveling to Israel where he was given instructions by the prophet’s servant. He turned away in rage at what he was instructed to do but was tenderly encouraged by his servants to humble himself and dip seven times in the muddy Jordan River. A very different Naaman emerged after the seventh dip…skin like the flesh of a little child and the Bible states, “…and he was clean.” He returns to Elisha and gives his joyful testimony, “Indeed, now I know that there is no God in all the earth, except in Israel…”
Color page. Make sure there is a contrast between Naaman and the water and sky. Cut a strip of card stock 7 inches long and the width of your figure’s hips to glue Namaan on. Cut from trunks down on both figures and glue back to back on your strip. Now trim around arms, shoulders and head so they match up. Write on strip : Naaman dips seven times . Tip: Place a piece of magic tape where the strip and figure meet. This will keep the edges from catching when the kids practice “dipping” Naaman 7 times. Cut slit in river to place Naaman in. (E-xacto makes the best, neat cut…which means you will have to pre-cut for the kids)
If you have a large class you may want to copy the worksheet differently if you have access to a copier. It is a little more work for you but you will save paper if this is a concern. With regular white copy paper, copy the worksheet. Now you should have 2 copies of everything. Attach your 2 scenes together and that will now give you the ability to make copies with colored card stock, printing 2- scene pages at a time. (You can re-copy this page on white card-stock to keep for future re-copying…I do this for all of my master copies.) Now you will want to double up on your figures. Take your 2 sets of figures, attach to a full page of copy paper and recopy. I think you can reposition the figures to get 4 sets on one full page. This page can now be re-copied on ivory or white card stock. When you need to print out 4 lessons of this story, you can do it with only 3 pieces of paper.. hope this helps.
A poor widow is in dire straights. Her husband’s creditor is coming to take her two sons into slavery as payment of their debt… The only thing of value that she has is a jar of oil. She cries out to the prophet Elisha for help and is instructed to borrow as many empty pots as she is able. Read the exciting conclusion in 2 Kings 4 . I suggest taking some time to go over certain names that sound the same in the Bible. Elijah, Elisha…Ahab, Ahaz, Jeroboam, Rehoboam and Balaam, Balak are a few that may confuse your listeners.
There are 2 worksheets for this lesson. One page is all pots to color, cut out and then glue to the other page. It is up to you if you want to use different colored card stock and cut out the pots ahead of time, or not…depends on how much time you have.
Note: Have you read the stern warning to any who would afflict a widow or fatherless child in Exodus 22: 23-24 ? … “If you afflict them in any way, and they cry at all to Me, I will surely hear their cry; and my wrath will become hot, and I will kill you with the sword…”