Gideon and the 300: Sunday School Lesson

Unbelievable odds. Impossible victories. Dive into the thrilling tale of Gideon, an ordinary man with extraordinary doubts. From angelic visits to astonishing miracles, witness how God transforms fear into faith. Remember, no challenge is too daunting when God’s on your side. Join us for a lesson on trust, transformation, and triumph. No matter how impossible things seem, with God, all things are possible. Join us for Gideon’s journey and be inspired by his faith journey!

Group Worship

My God is So Big

In this song, kids joyfully sing about how big, strong, and mighty God is, understanding that He’s always there and can do anything.

 

Lyric & Motions Video

You, You, You

In this song, kids are taught to trust God, regardless of who they are or what they can do. It emphasizes that God’s love and trustworthiness aren’t based on our abilities or status.

 

Lyric & Motions Video

Song 1
Song 3

Group Worship

My God is So Big

In this song, kids joyfully sing about how big, strong, and mighty God is, understanding that He’s always there and can do anything.

 

Lyric & Motions Video

Song 1

You, You, You

In this song, kids are taught to trust God, regardless of who they are or what they can do. It emphasizes that God’s love and trustworthiness aren’t based on our abilities or status.

 

Lyric & Motions Video

Song 3

Opening Activity | Iron Toes

Gideon-Marbles

Objects Needed: Large bucket of ice water (with lots of ice) and marbles

Place the marbles in the bucket with the ice water.

Tell kids we’re going to have a challenge to see who can get the most marbles out of the bucket with their toes in two minutes.

Award a point to students for each marble they pull out.

Lesson Tie-in: This game tests your ability to endure cold water while picking up marbles. Today’s story was about a man who doubted God’s ability to help him, so he went through some tests of his own.

Gideon-Marbles

Object Lesson | Paper Table

Objects Needed: 2 pieces of paper taped into tubes (see picture 1 below), a piece of paper folded several times like an accordion (see picture 2 below), a regular piece of paper (see picture 3 below), Kleenex box

God was going to show his supernatural power through Gideon. Gideon looked at the men in his camp and thought, “THERE IS NO WAY we are ever going to defeat the Midianites!”

Take an object like a Kleenex box and attempt to set it on the ‘table’ structure as in picture 4 below. It will fall right through the paper.

But God wanted to show that with His power Gideon could accomplish what seemed impossible!

Replace the piece of paper on top of the ‘table’ structure with the accordion folded one (like picture 5 below). It will now hold the box!

Lesson Script

Judges 6-7

Have you ever been convinced that something was completely impossible? Maybe you were playing in a soccer or a football game where the other team was scoring and scoring and scoring and your team… was not. It seemed IMPOSSIBLE to win the game.

Today, we are going to talk about a person who thought that many things were impossible. In fact, he thought they were SO impossible that nothing could ever change.

Let’s back up. The main character of our story is named Gideon, and Gideon is an Israelite- the Israelites are God’s chosen people. But here’s the thing- the Israelites, even though they are God’s chosen people, messed up a lot and God gave them consequences. The book of Judges, in Chapter 6, verse 1, tells us that

 

Judges 6:1 (NCV)

“Again the Israelites did what the Lord said was wrong. So for seven years, the Lord handed them over to Midian.” 

 

Think of a time when you got in trouble at home. Have you ever… not done something when your parents asked you? Like cleaning your room or doing the dishes? (Pause for responses or hands).

 

You probably had some sort of a consequence

 

You probably had some sort of a consequence like getting a tablet taken away or not getting to do something. Well, the people of Israel did the same thing and had to suffer the consequences. God is so loving that he gives his people consequences to show them the right way and to show that following Him is better than following our own desires.

Now, back to Gideon. Here Gideon is, living a hard life with the other Israelites, listening to what the Midianites tell them what to do! Wag your fingers like you’re being super bossy and telling a little brother or sister what to do! (Model sassy finger-wagging and have kids do it too). That doesn’t sound like fun at all!

 

Here is where the story gets awesome!

 

One day, Gideon was just hanging out, doing his normal activities, when all of a sudden BOOM an angel appeared to him! Imagine if you were just doing your homework or playing video games and an angel popped up out of nowhere! How would you react? (Model a surprised face and actions and have the kids do the same). Yeah, I bet Gideon was pretty surprised too!

The Bible tells us that the angel told him,

Judges 6:14 (NCV)

“Go with your strength and save Israel from the Midianites.” 

 

Now, you may be thinking of a strong, confident superhero grinning while the camera slowly pans over his face. We might expect him to say, “What!? Me!? That’s amazing!”

 

But Gideon didn’t do any of that. He said, in Judges 6:15,

 

Judges 6:15 (NCV)

“Lord, how can I save Israel? My family group is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least important member of my family.” 

 

Basically, Gideon was saying… “Ummmmmm… I think you got the wrong guy.”

The Lord responded, “I will be with you (Judges 6:16 NCV),” but Gideon was still a little sketched out by the whole situation. To prove that the angel was really from God, he wanted some kind of special sign.

And a special kind of sign there was! The angel told Gideon to put goat meat and bread on a rock and pour broth on them. Sounds kinda crazy, right? Well, it gets crazier. All of a sudden,

 

Judges 6:21 (NCV)

“the angel of the Lord touched the meat and the bread with the end of the stick that was in his hand. Then FIRE jumped up from the rock and “completely burned up the meat and the bread.” 

 

If Gideon wasn’t convinced before, he sure was now! But guess what? Even though Gideon was sure that he was actually talking to an angel sent as a messenger from God, he still wasn’t sure that he would really “save Israel from the Midianites” as the Lord said. Gideon asked for two more signs, and the Lord did them! Now, if someone asks me something over and over again, I might get annoyed. But God was so patient with Gideon and showed him that He was trustworthy.

After all this, Gideon was finally good to go. He and 32,000 of his closest friends went up to camp to fight against the Midianite army. Think about this- if you were fighting a super important battle, would you want a LOT of people on your side or just a small amount of people on your side? (allow for responses) A lot of people? Me, too. That usually means you have a better chance of winning!

But there was a problem. God didn’t

 

Judges 7:2 (NCV)

“want the Israelites to brag that they saved themselves.” 

 

It would be God’s strength and power that defeated the army, not people’s!

So God told Gideon that there were TOO MANY people! He told Gideon to tell his army,

 

Judges 7:3 (NCV)

“Anyone who is afraid may leave Mount Gilead and go back home.” 

 

Out of 32,000 people, 22,000 of them were scared and left!

But the new army of 10,000 people was still TOO BIG. God designed another way to make the group of people smaller. They went down to the water to drink, and God told Gideon that the people who scooped up the water with their hands and lapped up the water like a dog could stay and fight, but those who knelt down would have to leave.

Out of 10,000 people, guess how many ended up staying to fight the Midianites and rescue the Israelites? (Take guesses). THREE HUNDRED! That is a tiny number to go against a giant and powerful army.

OK, so we know that Gideon had 300 fighters. How do you think they would choose to fight their enemies- what would be their weapon of choice? (Take guesses).

If you guessed… trumpets, you would be right! (Make trumpet noise and act out blowing a trumpet). The men surrounded the Midianite camp and blew their trumpets and smashed jars with torches in them. Pretend to blow a trumpet and throw a jar on the ground!

The Midianite army didn’t even fight- they straight up ran away as FAST as they could!

 

Judges 7:22 (NCV)

“Judges 7:22 says that “the Lord made all the Midianites fight each other with their swords!” 

 

Then they took off running!

 

Judges 7:22 (NCV)

“The enemy army ran away.” 

 

Make no mistake- God caused this, not the people.

Wow! God provided for his people and rescued them… all while using a man who had so, so many doubts. Whenever you aren’t sure if God can really use you or not, remember Gideon and the incredible strength of the Lord.

No problem is too big for God, and no person is too small for Him to use.

(Close in prayer and thank God for loving his people and choosing to use them to accomplish his plans).

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Gideon - Group Game

Group Game | Dog Biscuit Race

Gideon - Group Game

Objects Needed: Dog biscuits (or if you aren’t that brave some crackers of similar size!), a bowl for each player plus one bucket

Put 5-6 dog biscuits (or crackers) in each bowl.

Set the bowls on one side of the playing field, and the bucket on the other.

Tell students that they will be racing to get rid of all of their dog biscuits and to get them into the bucket.

However, they can only use their mouth to do so. If a dog biscuit drops out of their mouth, they must retrieve it from the floor using only their mouth.

The person who gets all of their dog biscuits to the bucket first wins!

Memory Verse

Sometimes, it’s easy to be afraid. Fear isn’t necessarily a bad thing—fear is a feeling you get that alerts your body to look out! Fear can keep you safe! But, it can also keep you from doing things that you should do! A lot of people are afraid of spiders, or lions, or bears! But that’s a good thing—at one time, spiders, lions, and bears were a big threat! But people can also be afraid of things like gummy worms or tying their shoelaces wrong. This fear isn’t as helpful.

Sometimes, God asks us to do things that are scary… but it isn’t because he wants us to be hurt. It’s because God knows that nothing is a match for him—even spiders, lions and bears! God knows that we will be safe because he is with us wherever we go.

Joshua 1:9

"Be strong and courageous; Do not be afraid, do not be discouraged. For the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go."

Small Group Questions

Who was the subject of this story?
Gideon

Where did the angel find Gideon?
Hiding

What did the angel tell Gideon to do?
Fight the Midianites

How did Gideon test God?
He put out an altar and did a fleece test twice.

What did God keep doing to Gideon’s army?
Making it smaller

How did God dwindle his army?
He said if anyone was afraid, or if they drank water like a dog, they should go home.

What did Gideon hear the Midianites talking about?
A dream they had that they would lose

What did Gideon’s army use to defeat the Midianites?
Jars, torches, and trumpets

What does Romans Joshua 1:9 say?
“Be strong and courageous, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”

Which part of the verse applies to the lesson from today?
Answers will vary

Where in your life do you need to remind yourself of Joshua 1:9?
Answers will vary

Small Group Activity | Crazy Pigs

Gideon - Small Group

Objects Needed: Hat, a piece of paper, and a marker per kid

Have each kid write down one of their biggest fears on a piece of paper and stick it in the hat. Pull out the first fear and read it out loud. Ask the kids:

  • Why do you think this person is afraid of this?
  • What do you think the person should remind him or herself when they are afraid of this?
  • Do you have any ideas to help this person with this fear?

IE: If a person writes down that they’re afraid of spiders, the group may say that spiders are creepy and have a lot of legs and that you don’t know what they’re thinking about.

They may say the person should remind him or herself that spiders aren’t harmful, or that they are bigger than spiders! One way to be helped with this fear is to study spiders so you know the dangerous ones from the non-dangerous ones, and to face your fear by killing a spider!

Gideon - Small Group

Words For This Week

This is included with every lesson I create, and is designed as a printout for you to give to parents after class.

 

Today’s Scripture: Judges 6-8

Memory Verse: Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid, do not be discouraged, for he Lord your God is with you.“ Joshua 1:9

——————

Today we talked about a guy who was little… I mean, the littlest of the littles. But God had a different name for him. God called him a “mighty warrior”, even though Gideon? Well, he was nothing like that. Gideon was short. He was small. He was afraid. He was everything you expect a warrior NOT to be, and everything you expect the loser of a war to be. Gideon was not the one you’d pick first for your side of the war.

But God knew Gideon, and God understood his fear. When Gideon asked for signs, God provided them. Three times, God provided signs to Gideon! When Gideon went into fight, God was right beside him. God gave Gideon the tools to defeat his enemy—even when he wasn’t the tallest, or the strongest. God dwindled Gideon’s army down to the bare bones—he made it clear to Gideon that it was in God’s strength that he won—not his own.

Key Thought:

God is stronger than my greatest fear!

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