181 & 182 - Elisha: Hunger in the city & Good News!


15 minute Story planner

2 Kings 7
The Children’s Bible in 365 Stories by Mary Batchelor, page 208 and 209

Use the Old Testament flashcards to remind the children of the events leading up to today’s story. Explain that when the Israelites finally reached the Promised Land, they called their land Israel. After many years Rehoboam became King of Israel; he was a bad king. With Rehoboam in charge the people of Israel began to disagree and eventually the nation of Israel split into two kingdoms. The kingdom in the North was called Israel and the kingdom in the South was called Judah. At that time God sent prophets (messengers) to his people. The prophets told the people how to live God’s way. The prophet Elijah was sent to the kingdom in the North. He passed on God’s message to the people of Israel. After a while God chose a helper and a friend for Elijah; his name was Elisha. When God took Elijah up to Heaven, Elisha carried on being God’s prophet to the Northern Kingdom. Before reading today’s story remind the children that next to Israel, on its northern border, was the country of Syria. The Syrians were an old enemy of the Israelites; for a time there was peace but the peace did not last for long.

1. Setting the scene - 2 mins 
Find the Old Testament section in a Bible.
Show and talk about 'The Old Testament FlashCards' cards one to seven

2. Starter question - 1 min  

Have you ever heard a story so extraordinary that you’ve wondered if it was really true? One day the King of Israel was woken to be told some marvellous news, but the news was so great he thought it was a trick. ‘Could it really be true?’ he thought; ‘Could this wonderful thing really have happened?’

3. Tell the story with props - 4 mins
Beware of allergies - make sure it is safe for the children in your group to handle the food used in this activity

  • Wooden toy bricks to build a city wall

  • Play-figures to represent the Syrian army and the four men outside the city wall.

  • A couple of food tents (see Craft instructions) to represent the Syrian camp.

Click on the images at the beginning of this post for more resources from the web

4. Story activity - 6 mins

Option 1 - Enjoy colouring in this week's Dead Sea Comic Caper (see Printables)

Option 2 - Catapults and popcorn
Beware of allergies - make sure it is safe for the children in your group to handle the food used in this activity

You will need: pre-popped popcorn. To make a simple catapult you will need: instructions (see Printables), plastic spoons, large craft lollipop sticks and elastic bands.

Make the catapults before the session so the children can use them straight away. Show the children how they can flick popcorn using the spoons or catapults. Set up the Syrian camp with one or two food tents (see craft activity) and at a distance of about two meters position a few bricks to represent the city of Samaria. Encourage the children to take it in turns seeing if they can flick the popcorn from ‘the camp’ all the way to ‘the city’. Explain that the Israelites probably carried the food back to the city of Samaria from the Syrian camp rather than using catapults!

5. Reflective prayer - 2 mins
Father, we think about the Israelites, desperate for food. Thank you that you heard their hungry cries and provided them with food to eat. Father, we remember the four men who went in search of a meal. Thank you that the most unlikely people in the story played the most important part in your plan.

Father we think about the angry King blaming Elisha for the problems in the city; help us to be patient when we are the middle of difficult times – help us to turn to you in our troubles rather than blame the people around us.

Father thank you for the wonderful outcome, that, just as you had promised, there was plenty of food for everyone to eat. Thank you for your wonderful promise to us; thank you that you will always love and care for us. Amen.

Alongside this story, make the craft...

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