Jewish Heroes - Moses
What is courage?
How did Moses and the Jews show courage?
Does it matter if people are not fair?
Who decides what is fair? Is it God?
Make a poster of your favourite super hero characters eg. Spiderman, Superman, etc. or talk about them together.
What is it that you like about these heroes; what qualities do they have?
Why do you like these stories? What can we learn from them?
Who was Moses and why is he so important to the Jews?
Moses was born well over a thousand years before Jesus arrived. When he was three months old he was put into a waterproof basket on the River Nile so that he would not be harmed. Moses was a Jew, and the king of Egypt wanted to stop the Jewish nation from growing too large and powerful – so he ordered all the Jewish baby boys to be killed! God kept Moses safe, and even arranged for the king’s daughter to find Moses on the river and bring him up as her own child.
We can read about Moses in Acts 7:20-22.
20 This was the time when Moses was born. He was a fine child. For three months Moses was cared for in his father’s house. 21 When they put Moses outside, the king’s daughter took him. She raised him as if he were her own son. 22 The Egyptians taught Moses all the things they knew. He was a powerful man in the things he said and did. International Children’s Bible (ICB)
When Moses grew up he lived in the palace, but was very sad because his people (the Jews) were treated like slaves. He had to run away when he killed an Egyptian slave-master, and lived in the Midian desert for 40 years. This gave him plenty of time to get married and start a family!
One day God spoke to him from a bush that seemed to be on fire... and sent him right back to Egypt to help set his people free. Unfortunately, the king did not want to let God’s people go, and so many terrible things (called ‘the 10 plagues’) happened to the Egyptian people before the king finally gave in. Moses led the Israelites, which is another name for the Jews, out into the desert – they were not slaves any more - they were free!
Moses did not really want the job of setting his people free. He didn’t think he was a very good speaker, he was afraid of the king, and he generally worried about not being up to the challenge. God had to keep reminding him that He was more powerful than any king and would help Moses do the job he had asked him to do!
(Introduction to Moses from the Friends and Heroes website)
What is the Jewish Festival of Pesach and how is it celebrated?
The Jewish people have a special festival to remember how God kept his promise to them in Egypt called Pesach.
Find out about the Seder dish and what foods are eaten and talk about the symbolism of the foods.
Think about 4 questions you would want to ask God/or someone important if you had the chance.
Draw /label a Seder plate - see the resources further down the page.
The Jewish people have suffered many terrible times in their history and remembering this time when God saved them from persecution has helped give them hope in dark times.
Think and talk about who you would turn to in times of trouble.
What happened when the Jews escaped from Egypt?
Talk about what it might be like if there were no rules at home or in school and you could do whatever you like.
What would be the good things about this/ and what would be the problems?
Recap or tell the story of the Jews in the wilderness. Explain that God gave them some very important rules to help the Jews live in safety. Look at the 10 commandments.
Explain that some were rules about living together some were rules about how to worship God. Classify them this way. It was the rules about worshipping one God rather than many Gods that made them different from all the other people. The Jews had to trust God that these were the right rules to follow, even though other people they knew did things differently. Talk about not just doing what everyone else does.
Explain that the Jews now had to keep their commandments from God safely. They were kept in the Ark of the Covenant. Talk about the meaning of the word covenant - a promise between God and his people.
Today Jews keep the 10 commandments not as stone tablets but written as part of the Torah in a Scroll.
If you had to choose 10 rules for the world to follow - what would they be?
Can you make a poster of the rules in your house and think about why you have those rules?
SUGGESTED ASSESSMENT ACTIVITY:
How do Jews feel about God? Why?
How do you feel about God?
Design your own Seder dish for a special meal for your family.
Design or make a model of a casket or container for the 10 commandments. The design of the container would have container would have to be: -
a) Strong enough to withstand the journey in the desert
b) Be special enough to reflect how the Jews feel about God.
Write about your design - what were your ideas?
IDEA FOR REFLECTION:
Why is Passover such a special time for Jews?
What do the believers of Judaism look forward to?
What do you hope for the future?