Blog Archives

Solomon Becomes King and Asks for Wisdom (story & video)

Solomon Becomes King and Asks for Wisdom - y2_w27

King David dies and his son, Solomon, assumes the throne. The LORD asks young Solomon what he could do for him. Solomon responds by asking for wisdom so he could rule well. The LORD is pleased with Solomon’s request and further grants him wealth and fame as well.

King Solomon wrote numerous proverbs and wise sayings. There is even an example of the application of his wisdom as he settled a dispute between two young mothers over a baby.

CLICK HERE to watch the video directly on vimeo, or press play via the embed link below:


David Takes a Census (story & video)

David Takes a Census and Buys a Threshold - y2_w26

King David decides to count his troops, realizes that was a bad decision (after the fact), has to choose one of three punishments, and buys the porch (threshold) where the plague stopped.

Interestingly, the “porch” that David bought became the sight where King Solomon placed the Temple.

Prescriptive & Descriptive

This past Sunday in Main Street, the story of the week was “The Conspiracy of Absalom.” What precipitated Absalom’s nefarious coup against his father, King David?

It’s a little rated “R”. You see, Amnon, one of David’s sons was “in love” with his half-sister, Tamar (one of David’s daughters). Amnon pretended to be sick all in a ploy to get his father to invite Tamar in to take care of him. When he was alone with her, Amnon forced himself on his sister. After the despicable act, Amnon was filled with hatred toward Tamar – “as much hatred after as he had love before.”

Enter Absalom. Absalom was Tamar’s full brother (they had the same mom). Absalom took care of his sister because his father did nothing. Absalom absolved himself to kill Amnon for what he had done. Two years later Absalom had his revenge on Amnon, and fled the country. Three years later he returned to Jerusalem and began to woo his fellow countrymen into following him, then later declared himself king while his father fled.

Teaching in Main Street get’s a little tricky when we get to stories like these. The audience is filled with grades 1-6 students. So one has to approach stories like this with great care and wisdom. Feel free to watch the video of how I navigated this story with the large group.

I regularly teach the 5th and 6th grade boys, and this audience we can get in to the “trickier” parts of the story. After the large group teaching time, I sat down with the boys and we read out of the Bible what precipitated Absalom’s conspiracy (particularly the part about Amnon and Tamar). The boys were shocked. I asked them what they would tell their parents when they were asked: “What did you learn in Main Street today?” The boys didn’t know what to say.

I then shared with them the difference between prescriptive and descriptive elements of the biblical text. “What does prescription mean?” They knew this one. “Like medicine.” “Yep,” I said. “It helps you out, doesn’t it? Doctor prescribes you a solution to your problem and it will, hopefully, work out for you.”

“Does the Bible want you to rape your sister? Is this a prescription?” They knew the answer to this one as well: “No.”

“What does description mean?” This one confused them for a second until I shorted the word to describe. “Oh,” they said, “to dictate or share the unique qualities of a particular entity.” Okay, they didn’t say that exactly, but something like that! I had one of the students stand up and we described his appearance. They understood.

Then I gave them a scenario:

What if a person after reading the story of Amnon and Tamar proceeds to rape his sister. He is caught by the appropriate authorities after an investigation finds sufficient evidence for a trial. The perpetrator declines a lawyer because he wants to defend himself. At the trial, the defendant defends himself by reading 2 Samuel 13. He says, quite emphatically: ‘The Bible said it was okay!’

The Judge, dumbfounded, looks on the defendant with pity and says: ‘You idiot! Are you serious?!’

I then asked the 5th and 6th grade boys: “Did this guy get his prescriptive and descriptive mixed up?” Again, the young men get it: “Of course,” they confidently say, “the Bible isn’t telling us to do these things, it’s describing an unfortunate event that occurred that led to other unfortunate things that occurred.”

I smiled with pride. Lesson learned. We then went on to discuss how we can tell when a passage of Scripture is descriptive or prescriptive. We particularly tried to discern what might be prescriptive in such a traumatic story as the rape of Tamar.

These young men are really smart!

Conspiracy of Absalom (story & video)

Conspiracy of Absalom - y2_w25

Absalom kills his half-brother, Amnon, then goes into hiding. After 3 years he returns, woos people to like him (and not his dad, King David) and then proceeds to perform a coup. King David flees, but eventually returns after his commander, Joab, finds and kills young Absalom.

Key Lesson of the Story? Sin has consequences.

Click Here to access the graphic novel “narrated” version of this story, otherwise, the LIVE teaching video is below:

David and Bathsheba (story & video)

David and Bathsheba - y2_w24

Nathan tells a story to David about a rich man and a poor man. The rich man steals the poor man’s beloved sheep to feed a traveler instead of using one of his own animals (of which he had plenty). David’s righteous anger is churned… until Nathan points his finger at David and tells him that he is that rich man!

The Davidic Covenant (story & video)

The Davidic Covenant - y2_w23

a clever video that “whiteboards” the story of the Davidic Covenant.

Saul (and Jonathan) Die and David Becomes King (story & video)

Saul Dies and David Becomes King - y2_w22

Regime change seems to be difficult sometimes. It was no different in the early years of Israel’s monarchy. King Saul had reigned for a while, then was killed in battle. Normally one of his sons would be installed as the next king, but God had rejected Saul’s kingship and passed it on to David. As David assumes control of the country, some violent things happen. But eventually, over a period of time, David unites the entire land of Israel under his kingship and establishes the capital city of Jerusalem.

This story is rather violent in nature. A lot of killing takes place.

Click Here to watch the version of this story we did 3 years ago.

David, Nabal and Abigail (story & video)

David, Nabal and Abigail - y2_w21

David encounters a “fool” (Nabal) and almost succumbs to a rash decision. Thank goodness for Abigail!

Vodpod videos no longer available.

David Spares Saul’s Life Twice (story & video)

David Spares Saul's Life Twice - y2_w20

King Saul was actively trying to kill David and he had numerous chances. In these two stories (1 Samuel 24, 26), David had a chance to end Saul’s life and chose to follow God and not himself. David would not lay a hand on the LORD’s anointed.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

David and Jonathan (story & video)

David and Jonathan - y2_w19

David is successful in whatever Saul sent him to do, then Saul got jealous and tried to kill David a number of times. In the process, David and Saul’s son Jonathan became best friends and looked out for each other.

This is the story of that friendship…

Vodpod videos no longer available.

David and Goliath (story & video)

David and Goliath - y2_w18

Young David does what King Saul is supposed to do: fight Goliath, defend Israel. Instead, Saul depends on David to fight for what is right. And David does so with courage and conviction. David would not let Goliath get away with cursing God and His people.

And the compare and contrast saga between Saul and David begins.

Read 1 Samuel 17:1-58

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Samuel Anoints David as King (story & video)

Samuel Annoints David - y2_w17

Samuel, while a little afraid, heads to Jesse’s house in Bethlehem in search of the next King that the LORD God wants to anoint. From the oldest, to the next six of seven sons, Samuel does not find the King God has chosen. However, little David is out in the fields with the sheep. He is brought in, God tells Samuel that this is the one, and Samuel anoints David.

Found in 1 Samuel 16:1-13