God is With Us (Exodus 25-26 & 35-40) Lesson #41 in What is God Like?
AGE GROUP: elementary (ages 6-11)
TIME REQUIRED: 45 minutes
This is lesson 41 of 42 in our study on the Attributes of God called “Can you tell me what God is like?” Visit the series index to view all the lessons and get more ideas for using this curriculum in your children’s ministry.
LESSON 41: GOD IS WITH US
- Key Verse: “The Lord Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress.” Psalm 46:7
- Teaching Passage: Exodus 25-26 & 35-40
- Supporting Texts: John 1:14, Isaiah 8:10, Matthew 1:23
Bibles, previous attribute of God posters, a large piece of paper with the words GOD IS WITH US written on it, a picture of the tabernacle. key verse (Psalm 46:7) printed on a piece of paper, blank paper and markers or colored pencils for each child in the group.
REVIEW PREVIOUS LESSONS:
Ask one of the kids in the group to remind you what you’re learning this year. Remind them that each week we’ll be looking into the Bible to answer the question… “Can you tell me what God is like?” and will be learning one of the many truths about God that we see in His Word.
Take a few minutes to review the attributes you’ve previously learned. Have kids take turns telling you their favorite attribute bout God that they have learned this year. Give time for several of them to share before moving on to this week’s attribute.
- God is Almighty= He has absolute power or is all powerful
- God is the Alpha and Omega= He is the beginning and the end, the first and the last
- God is Awesome = He inspires awe and amazement
- God is Compassionate = He shows a deep concern for His people & a desire to meet their needs
- God is the Deliverer = He is the rescuer or savior
- God is Exalted = He is noble, elevated and lifted up
- God is Faithful = He is reliable, trustworthy, true to His Word & keeps His promises
- God Forgives = He grants pardon and cancels the debt of sin
- God is Glorious = He is full of glory (praise, honor & distinction)
- God is Good = morally excellent, virtuous or righteous
- God is Gracious = merciful, benevolent, kind & compassionate
- God Guides His People= He leads, accompanies, assists and gives direction/ guidance
- God Heals = make healthy & whole & free from ailments
- God is Holy = He is sinless, perfect and set apart
- God is our Hope = He is the One in whom our expectations are centered
- Jesus is Immanuel = God with Us
- God is Judge = He is the One who rules over and passes judgement on others
- God is Just = He is the One who is fair and does what is right
- God is King of kings & Lord of lords = He is The One who rules the rulers
- Jesus is the Lamb without blemish = He is the perfect sacrifice for sin
- God is Love = God has tender and caring affection for His people
- God is Majestic = God is stately, kingly, grand & raised up
- God is Merciful = God is full of compassion, pity, and undeserved grace & love for another
- God is Omnipotent = He is almighty or infinite in power
- God is Omnipresent = He is everywhere all the time
- God is Omniscient = He knows everything
- God is One = the Only God
- God Protects His People = He defends, guards, covers & shields His people
- God is Righteous = He is always right & He always does what is right
- God is the Rock = solid, strong and offering protection
- God provides the PERFECT SACRIFICE for sin = Jesus is the gift or payment that paid for our sin
- God Saves = to rescue from danger
- God Shepherds His people = He tends, guards and watches over His people
- God is a Shield= He hides, conceals & protects His people (through Jesus’ blood)
- God is Sovereign = He rules over all
- Jesus is the One Mediator = He is the One who stands between (us & God) and brings judgement
- God is Trustworthy = He is dependable, reliable, honest & faithful
- God is Truth = fact, reliable, not false in any way
- God is Unchangeable = He cannot be moved, He does not change
- God is Wise = He is able to discern what is right or true
TEACH – WITH US:
Introduce the truth that God is with us, by asking the kids who is with them right now. They should name some of the people in the room. It’s a simple concept and they’ll probably laugh at you, but ask them if they can be with someone who is in a different room, or in a different country or who lived in a different time. Obviously we can only be with the people who are physically present with us. There is a wall separating us from the people in the next room, there is distance separating us from people in other countries and there is time separating us from people who lived in history.
Then, ask who God is with, or if He is with us. Introduce this concept by talking about several of the places in the Bible where we see God with His people. Explain that from the very beginning that God has been with His people, but in different ways. Ask someone to remind you how God was with His people in the garden (He walked in the garden with them). Then, ask what changed the relationship between God and His people. Explain that because of sin God had to separate His people from Himself because He is holy. Explain that in our story we’re going to see how God was able to be with His people but still be separated from Him because of sin and that later we’ll see how the separation between God and His people ended through Jesus.
Today we’re talking about the truth that God is With Us. The main way we’ll be talking about this truth is through a story in the Old Testament that shows how God was both with His people and separate from His people at the same time – in the tabernacle.
We can read about the tabernacle in Exodus 25-40 and can see that God gave all of the details for how they should build his “tent” so that He could live among them.
Introduce the story for the morning by giving the quick Bible timeline review…. God made the world, people sinned, God kicked them out of the garden, people sinned, Noah, people sinned, God chose Abraham, Isaac was born, then Jacob & Esau, then Jacob had 12 sons, Joseph was sold into slavery in Egypt by his brothers, 400 years passed, God’s people were slaves in Egypt, God chose Moses and sent him to rescue His people, plagues, passover, God opened the sea, now people are in the desert on the way to the promised land being led by Moses…. Moses goes up on the mountain and meets with God, God gives him the 10 commandments and gives him instructions for building a special tent called the tabernacle.
The tell story of the tabernacle from Exodus 25-40 in your own words highlighting the following points:
- God gave specific instructions for the construction of the tabernacle and they had to follow His plan. The tabernacle was to be set up in the middle of the camp surrounded by all of the tribes of Israel.
- Certain people were chosen to build the tabernacle. (show pictures if you can find some)
- Around the tabernacle was a big courtyard where people would come to offer their sacrifices to God and in the courtyard there was a tent, this tent was where God would tabernacle (or dwell) with His people.
- The tabernacle was divided into 2 parts- the Holy Place and the Most Holy Place and the 2 parts were divided by a curtain.
- Inside the Most Holy Place was the ark of the covenant which was a special wooden box designed by God to hold the 10 commandments and above the ark is where God would meet with His people.
- Only once a year one priest was allowed to enter the most holy place. The curtain separated the Holy God from His sinful people and was a reminder of His holiness and our sinfulness.
- In Exodus 40, after the whole tabernacle was set up, a cloud covered the tabernacle and the glory of the Lord filled the tabernacle. This was a physical sign of God’s presence with His people.
- The tabernacle was how God was able to live among His sinful people, without being in the presence of their sin.
To illustrate the idea of being in the midst or with people, but still separated, put a small tent in the middle of the room. Have someone go inside the tent and the rest of the people stay outside. Point out that they can still talk to each other and are still together, but that the people on the outside can’t see or touch the person on the inside.
DEFINE AND REMEMBER:
To help the kids remember this truth about God, take a few minutes to define the attribute.
WITH US = HERE, PRESENT, INVOLVED IN OUR LIVES
Since motions & actions help kids remember, choose an action for WITH US. A good motion might be to put your arm around the person next to you.
SAY: “This morning we’re talking about the truth that God is With Us. Throughout the Bible we see God with His people in different ways at different times. Sometimes He was right with His people and sometimes He was separated from His people because of sin.”
Read the memory verse (Psalm 46:7) a few times together and do the motion for with us.
Remind the kids of how you started the lesson by thinking about how God lived with His people at different times in history. Remind them that after the first sin, God separated His people from Himself because of sin and remind them how you see that separation in the tabernacle. Talk about how this separation continued through the rest of the Old Testament- in the tabernacle and in the temple in Jerusalem, God was with His people, but there was always a curtain separating God from His people. Then, in John1:14 we read, “The Word (Jesus) became flesh and made Hs dwelling (tabernacled) among us.” Something was changing, God had come to tabernacle with His people in the flesh. But, even though Jesus was physically there with His people, there was still some separation. Something still had to be done to remove the separation between God and man. God was still holy and man was still separated so they couldn’t be together. When Jesus was on the cross (Matthew 27:50-51) and died for for the sin of His people the separation ended. In that moment, when Jesus died and sin was paid for, the curtain in the temple was torn from the top to the bottom. Jesus opened the way for sinful man to be in the presence of Holy God. Now, by believing in Jesus we can live with God and know that God is with us.
Give each child a blank piece of paper provide markers or colored pencils. Encourage them to write the word WITH US somewhere on the paper and then write or draw something to help them remember this attribute of God. They could write the definition for WITH US or the memory verse or they could illustrate the the story. After a few minutes, bring the group back together and give kids time to share what they have drawn or written.
Pray that the kids in the group would come to know God more and more each week through this study and that they would remember that all of us are sinners who need to be saved and that they would turn to this good God for salvation. Thank God for sending Jesus to earth to be with His people.