This free Sunday School lesson teaches students that the details God gave Daniel about the future battles between the Northern and Southern Kings happened exactly as God said they would. Students will learn that until Jesus comes for the final battle we will face battles in this life. By standing firm in our faith in God and His Word, we can endure and overcome each battle.
Bible Story: Battle of the Kings of the North and South
Scripture: Daniel 11:2-32
Target Age Group: Age 9 – 11 (U.S. 3rd – 5th Grade)
Learning Context: Sunday School
Target Time Frame: 60 minutes
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Supply List: Bibles, Battleship Game (or supplies for paper version),
Learning Goal: Students will learn that in the battles of this life believers can stand firm.
Learning Activity #1: While students are waiting for other others to arrive those who are there can play Battle Ship. (If you do not own the game you can create a paper version of the game and play teacher vs. students)
Learning Activity #2: Play an indoor version of Red Rover. Set limits to avoid injury. Adapt the game by explaining that the team calling the student are believers in Jesus. They are calling for others to believe in the Lord Jesus and join His team. The obstacle of having to break through is from God’s enemy Satan who fights to keep people from being on God’s winning team. After playing a few rounds of the game adapt again by choosing a student to stand in the middle. When a name is called out he/she will join the person and help them get through the obstacle to join the team that called them over. The person helping represents prayer (praying for others defeats the enemy and loosens his grip), and a believer who encourages and shares God’s truth with unbelievers etc.
Test: Review Questions
Memory Verse: “Submit yourselves, then to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” James 4:7 NIV
Teaching the verse: Explain submit-to make God the boss of your life by obeying Him. When you obey God and choose to say no to sin you are resisting the devil and he will flee from you.
Have students choose hand movements for the verse and recite together.
Bible Lesson: The Battle of the Kings of the North and South
In our last lesson we studied Daniel chapter 10. We discovered that there is a battle going on in the unseen world as the prince of Persia fought against God’s angel sent to tell Daniel about the vision of a great war.
Today’s lesson is going to be the message that the angel gave to Daniel about the great war.
The angel explains Daniel’s vision of a great war. If you have been studying the Book of Daniel with us a few weeks ago we discussed how God builds upon Daniel’s understanding through the different dreams and visions in this Book. This dream begins with the reigns of the Persian Empire and then focuses on 2 of the four generals that rule after Alexander the Great dies.
The Babylonian Kingdom was taken over by Medo-Persian Empire. Let’s read Daniel 11:2. History records these as the men who rule in Persia:
- Cambyses from 529BC
- Pseudo-Smerdis from 527
- Darius Hystaspis from 521
- A fourth and far more wealthy king Xerxes (Esther’s husband), reigned from 485-465BC
Who remembers the Kingdom who will rise up and defeat the Medo-Persian Empire? (The Grecian Empire) Do you remember who the ruler is from the Grecian Empire? (Alexander the Great) Daniel 11:3-4 refer to Alexander the Great and the dividing up of his kingdom to his four generals after he dies.
- Northern-Syria (Seleucus)
- Southern-Egypt (Ptolemy)
- Eastern-Turkey (Lysimachus)
- Western-Greece (Cassander)
(Use a map to locate the geographical territories of the North and South.)
The remaining verses are about events that happen between 2 of the generals and those who rule after them. The rulers are the King of the South and the King of the North.
Daniel 11:5-20 The Kings of the South and the Kings of the North have many battles with each other. Let’s look at a map and see the areas that these kings rule over. The reason these battles are even mentioned in Scripture is because they affect God’s people and the land He gave them. (Point out Israel)
Daniel 11:21-32 These verses talk about a wicked ruler from the Northern kingdom who attempted to defeat the South but is unsuccessful (11:29). This ruler is so angry that he wasn’t successful that he took out his anger on God’s people. In Daniel’s vision of the ram and the goat we learned the king predicted in (8:23-25) was Antiochus IV Epiphanes. In Daniel’s vision of the King of the North in 11:21-35 was also fulfilled by Antiochus IV Epiphanies.
Antiochus will treat God’s people with cruelty and he will defile God’s temple. Let’s read how God’s people respond to Antiochus’ evil against them in verse 32. “The people who know their God will firmly resist him.” Let’s look at our memory verse for today. Do you see any similarities? God’s people are being attacked by a physical enemy but they firmly resist him because they know God. Believers will be attacked by God’s unseen enemy and the only way we can resist him is if we know God (by reading and studying His Word) and stand firm in God’s truth.
Daniel’s vision of a great battle continues and focuses on a king that will come who will be the Antichrist. We are going to stop here for now. There have been many battles in history and every one of them God knew about before they ever happened. He knows about the battles that are taking place in the unseen world. We can stand firm against the enemy because God is fighting for us and always wins.
Close in prayer.
- What was Daniel’s vision about that the angel was explaining to him? (A great battle)
- Who was fighting in this battle? (Kings from the South and Kings of the North)
- After Alexander the Great died who took his place? (Four of his generals)
- Which two kingdoms from the four battled against each other? (Ptolemy and Seleucus)
- Why were these battles included in Scripture? (Because they involve God’s people the nation of Israel)
- How do believers win battles against God’s enemy? (Submitting to God, prayer, resisting)
- How will you fight the battle for those you know have not joined God’s winning team by being saved? (Pray, invite to church, share the Gospel)