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Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it. ~ Proverbs 22:6 KJV

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    Tuesday, April 23, 2013

    Although many different Sunday school lessons can be taught from the story of Gideon in the bible, today we're going to focus on listening, following, and acting like Christians.

    Gideon in the Bible
    The angel set under an oak tree.
    Photo: Anne Lowe
    How many times have you talked to someone who says they are a Christian but they don't live a Godly life?

    You may even have thought they were not a Christian at other times just by their actions and speech.

    In today's world, it has become the 'norm' to live however you want when you want with no regards to the church or to God.

    It is not supposed to be this way. The bible says,

    James 1:22 KJV
    But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.

    God tells us in this one verse that we are to not only hear (or read) what is in the bible, but we are supposed to do it too. If we don't follow God's word, we are deceiving ourselves and thus, deceiving others just like lying.

    Below is the story of Gideon in the bible where he meets an angel - The Angel of the Lord to be exact. Use it to teach your class how listening and following God's word is very important in our Christian lives.

    Gideon in the Bible - Sunday School Lesson

    At a time when the people of Israel had turned from God and turned to worshipping idols, the Midianite people began to come into their land and destroy everything. They took what they wanted and got rid of the rest.
    The Israelites were so scared they fled from their homes and lived in caves in the mountains.
    Get the 'Follow God's Word Maze'!
     The bible tells us that there were so many Midianite people it looked like swarms of grasshoppers in the land. It also said they had so many camels you couldn't even count them.
    What could the Israelite people do but run and hide?
    You see, when people do not follow God, they become scared and try to run from their troubles. But, if we choose to listen to God and follow Him, he will help make us strong and face whatever trouble comes our way.
    This doesn't mean we won't be scared from time-to-time. It just means that God is right beside us, leading us where we need to go to face and overcome our troubles and fears.

    The Angel

    During this time, a young man named Gideon lived in the land. He was an Israelite and his family was very poor. He was even the youngest in his family, but God had a very important, very special job for Gideon.
    He was to defeat the whole Midianite army!
    As Gideon was working one day, an angel appeared under an oak tree nearby. He began talking to Gideon telling him how important he was going to be and how it was going to be his job to defeat the Midianites.
    Gideon couldn't believe what the angel was telling him. How could he defeat so many people?
    The answer was simple.
    The angel, who was actually Jesus before he came to earth as a baby, said, "I will be with you."

    The Lesson

    What if Gideon hadn't listened to the angel of the Lord? What if he went about his business as he did everyday? What if Gideon didn't obey what he was told? What if he let fear control him?
    The answer is simple - the Israelites would never have defeated the Midianites.
    Because Gideon listened and obeyed, he led the small 300 men Israelite army into battle against the huge Midianite army and won!
    Now, some of you will say, "But, Gideon lived in bible times. Or, Gideon wasn't afraid."
    Both of these are true, but do you know what? Gideon was younger than the others. Gideon was poor. Gideon was scared. And Gideon was just like you.
    The only difference in Gideon and people today is that Gideon listened to God and followed what he said. Even though we don't hear God talking to us like Gideon did (although, some people have), we have the bible. God's words are written inside so that we can have his words with us at all times.
    Just like the verse above says, "Be ye doers of the word and not hearers only". We need to stand strong in the Lord. We should always live like we know Jesus and we should always let others see we have Jesus in our hearts.
    No one should ever look at us and wonder if we are Christians. They should be able to tell by our words and our actions.


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