Moses and the Ten Commandments, from Exodus 16-17, 19-40
Big Idea for Parents
Almost immediately after God performed a miracle by parting the Red Sea and leading His people to safety, they began doubting Him once again. They complained about their food and living conditions and claimed they would be happier back in Egypt. God provided them with everything they needed – but they still asked for more. In their minds, they knew best.
God knew, however, that there “was no such thing as happiness without him,” (pg. 103) and so He gave his people rules to follow to show them how “life worked best” (pg. 106). Unfortunately, as we are all well aware, it is impossible to follow all of God’s commands perfectly. We recognize, as sinners, that we are unable to live the way he intended us to live. We come to Him, asking for his forgiveness for the times we fail; and when we do, we also receive the amazing gift of his love and grace.
God knew that we wouldn’t be able to keep his commands perfectly – and so he performed yet another miracle: he saved us from the punishment we deserve by sending His one and only Son to die for our sins. Because of Jesus, we are forgiven for our failures. Praise be to the God of all grace and peace!
What are the rules in your classroom at school? Do you have to raise your hand if you want to answer a question or ask permission to use the restroom? Does your teacher expect you to listen, be respectful, or show kindness to your classmates? Teachers make rules because they want their students to be safe, learn as much as possible, and have fun with each other. They know that, if their students follow the rules, all of those things can happen.
In today’s story, God made some rules for his people. There were ten of them, and he wrote them because he wanted them to be safe, happy, and always reminded of how much He loved them. Unfortunately, just like in a classroom sometimes, they didn’t always follow the rules. Not one of God’s people was perfect, and so they simply couldn’t live the way He knew would be best for them. Read pgs. 100-107 to hear more about God’s ten rules for His people – and his forgiveness when they couldn’t keep them!
- Can you think of a time when you broke one of the rules in your house or at school? How did you feel?
- God’s people only had ten rules to follow and they still couldn’t keep them! Why is it so hard for us to follow the rules God gives us? What keeps us from living the way God wants us to live?
- When we mess up – like the Israelites did – what does God do? Does he send us to “Time-Out” or put our name on the board?
- God knew that, no matter how hard we tried, we could never, ever keep all of his rules perfectly – and so he sent Jesus to save us. How does it feel to know that, through Jesus, you are forgiven for all of the times you mess up? And with whom can you share that wonderful news?
We know that we mess up every single day and forget to follow your rules for our lives. Thank you for loving us and forgiving us, even when we do not deserve it. Thank you for Jesus, who lived the perfect life so that we could live in heaven with you! In His name, Amen.