Gideon (Judges 6-7)
- The story of God delivering the Midianite
army into Gideon's hands is told, using a script that involves both children and adults.
- An adult talks through the significance
and application of the story, between scenes of the script.
- An adult or competent reader to Narrate
- An adult to lead the children through the
- Four more readers (adults or
- As many other children as you have in
church, to help with acting out the script.
- 5 copies of the script.
- A couple of well-loved soft toys (Judges
- A wool fleece/rug, and some means of
indicating the dew - e.g. an empty watering can, which the Angel could
use to 'sprinkle' dew on or around the fleece, while Gideon 'sleeps'; or
some pieces of blue-painted bubble-wrap, to be scattered on or around the
fleece (Judges 6.33-40).
- A piece of blue material (e.g. sheet or
towel) to represent the river (Judges 7.1-7).
- 'Trumpets' for Gideon's soldiers - e.g.
party blowers (Judges 7.9-25).
- Some means of representing the torches
inside clay jars (Judges 7.9-25). You don't need to have one for every
soldier - if you can fashion 3 then you could give one to each group of
soldiers. E.g. you could cut out the side of a smallish cardboard box and
cover that side with tissue paper. If you had an LED light inside the
box, then that could be switched on as the paper was burst. Or you could
simply make a cover for the top of a torch, to be ripped off at the
- Select the readers in advance or at the
start of the service, according to your usual practice. You're going to
use the children as the Israelite army and the seated adults as the
Midianites, so you need to give the parts of the two Midianites in Scene
4 (Judges 7.9-25) to two of the adults in the congregation. The parts of
Narrator, Gideon, Angel and God can be taken by any competent readers,
adults or older children.
- The pattern of this teaching activity is
"Scene - Teaching - Preparation": in other words, after you've talked the
children through the meaning of the previous scene, you talk them through
their roles in the next. Only readers are involved in the first two
scenes, so leave the other children in their seats until you need them to
be the Israelite army in the third scene.
- Judges 6.1-16 God does not always
choose the most obvious person for a job. We might look in the mirror and
see somebody weak or shy or not very talented. But when God looks at you,
He sees His precious child. Bring out the well-loved toys and introduce
them to the children. Talk about how, if they went to a toy shop to buy a
present for a little sister/brother/nephew/niece, and the shopkeeper
produced one of these, then they wouldn't be very impressed! But when you
look at them, you don't see the dirt or the holes - you just see your old
favourites. That's how God feels about each one of us. He knows us inside
out and He loves everyone of us as His 'old favourites'. Gideon saw
himself as the least important member of an unimportant family. But God
knew how much Gideon was worth, and He had a great work for him to
- Judges 6.33-40 Gideon had been
called to do something frightening, challenging and totally unexpected.
He wasn't afraid to test whether this really was what God was calling him
to do. Sometimes, people give the impression that in order to be a
Christian we need to turn off our minds and just blindly accept
everything that we're told. People of faith are often characterised as
naive and gullible, and atheists sometimes portray themselves as
intellectually superior. But time and again in the Bible, we see people
doublechecking God's will, asking for confirmation that it is really Him
they've heard calling them, and not just their imaginations. God is quite
big enough for all of our doubts and questions, as Gideon
- Judges 7.1-7 When things go wrong
it's all too easy to blame God. But when things go right, we tend to take
the credit for ourselves. God wanted to ensure that not only Gideon but
every last person in Israel knew that He had saved them from the
Midianites. They weren't able to save themselves by their own efforts -
but they could trust Him completely.
- Judges 7.9-25 There are some
memorable points in Gideon's story: the dew and the fleece; the men
lapping the water like dogs; the trumpets and torches. But what can we
learn from this ancient story today? We can learn that God loves each one
of us - not for what we've achieved in life so far, but for who we are,
valuing us as his precious children. We can learn that He has a plan for
each one of us - work for us to do for Him - and He's chosen us for the
job because He knows that we're up to it - even if we have our doubts! We
can learn that God is big enough for all of our doubts and questions, and
our faith can grow if we're honest and brave in facing up to our doubts,
rather than hiding from them. And we can learn to remember to give God
the praise and the glory when things go right, and to trust Him when they
go wrong - rather than taking all the credit for ourselves when things go
right, and blaming God when they go wrong.