Saturday, November 5, 2011

Pitchers 3


Partial board from the November 2 class, from David's adultery up to Elijah in Zarephath. From left to right:

1. Review of Levitical sacrifice reminds kids of the necessity of both forgiveness and atonement. I read bits of 2Sam11 as the kids learn the story of David & Bathsheba.  David later confesses his sins (violating 3 commandments which the kids figure out) to Nathan .  I tell the kids that Nathan is Hebrew for gift.  Remembering that -el- in a Bible name means God, they then figure out that Nathan-i-el means Gift of God. (BTW, Netan-yahu means Gift of YHWH.)  Through Nathan, God forgives David [forgiveness is checked off].  But God takes David and Bathsheba's baby as atonement [atonement is checked off].

Old Testament examples of forgiveness and atonement are emphasized in class.  Later on we'll compare them to Christ's perfect atonement.

Coincidentally, Tuesday's Dear Abby involved a reference to David and Bathsheba. Next week I'll read that article to start class, and get the kids to explain the relevance of D & B to the situation.

2. The kids tell me that later on David and Bathsheba have another child named Solomon; they also tell me he was famous for his wisdom. I say a bit about the difference between knowledge and wisdom, and then the kids tell the story of the two women and the baby. I draw a baby with women's faces to each side, and adjust their expressions as the story is discussed [this picture was erased]. The key lesson is that the mother loved the baby more than herself, while the other woman loved herself more than the baby.

3. Following a comparison of Solomon's Temple with the Meeting Tent [I have a handout: they're too complicated to draw] I draw a king, and to his right a queen. The kids tell me that's Solomon, and then figure out that the Queen is his mom Bathsheba, not one of his wives. I read (1Kings2) and tell the story of Adonijah seeking Bathsheba's intercession with her son. Based on that story, the kids extend the king/ queen mother concept to Jesus and Mary. They then tell me the story of Cana, and see the intercessory parallel between Bathsheba and Mary.

4. After Solomon dies, Israel is split into the Northern and Southern Kingdoms. The kids make fun of my banana map of Samaria and Judea, and recall the parable of the Good Samaritan. I briefly explain the problems Samaria has due to its separation from Jerusalem and the Temple.  Now the king becomes Ahab, king of Samaria, and his queen is Jezebel, a woman from pagan Sidon. Along with Jezebel, Ahab worships the baby-eating false god Baal. 

5. I introduce Elijah to the class and write his name, but then replace the J with a Y: ELIYAH.  I write YHWH next to ELIYAH, and with some help, the kids see that El-i-jah means [my] God is YHWH.  I read a bit from 1Kings17 as Elijah speaks for God. Elijah tells Ahab there will be drought as long as there is Baal-worship in Samaria.  Then Elijah follows God's command to flee to pagan Sidon, lest Ahab use his head as a bowling ball.

Class over!


Kathleen Basi said...

That story about Solomon and the two babies is particularly troublesome to me. I know what the underlying lesson is supposed to be, and I can certainly see the real mother being willing to give up her child in order to save its life. My problem is always the believability of the other woman. It reads to me like one of those stories that's a little too convenient, and I always wonder if it should have been told more parable-like. Who knows if I'll ever work out that particular quandary in my mind? :)

kkollwitz said...

"the believability of the other woman"

Maybe she was a bit of a nut like women today who kidnap pregnant women to get their babies. Or maybe in the days of common infant mortality and social pressure to have children, even an otherwise sensible woman would resort to this in a moment of despair and weakness.

Barb Schoeneberger said...

I sure liked your reference to Netanyahu. Go, Bibi, go! He really is a gift of God and a first class statesman. Another interesting class.

I remember when I was less than six and heard the Bible story about Solomon and the two babies. It took my breath away that anybody could be that wise and right away I started praying for wisdom. I wanted to be wise like him. Of course, he did manage to get off track later on, but that's another story.

I think you are correct that the pressure to have babies was extremely strong and a lot was at stake for the multiple wives rich men had in those days. The one whose baby died had a great deal of influence to lose over the father. Just another aspect of the evils of polygamy.

kkollwitz said...

"Just another aspect of the evils of polygamy."

A steady theme in class is one man/ one woman, and we cover assorted examples of multiple wives being a problem in the OT:

Abraham, David, Solomon, and Elkanah; of whom only the lattermost's polygamy limited discord within the family.