“Lesson 24: Gideon,” Primary 6: Old Testament (1996), 106–9
“Lesson 24,” Primary 6: Old Testament, 106–9
To teach the children the value of trusting in the Lord.
Judges 6:1–16—Gideon is called to deliver the Israelites from bondage.
Judges 6:25–32—Gideon destroys the altar of Baal.
Judges 6:33–40—The Lord gives Gideon a sign.
Judges 7:1–8—Gideon’s army is reduced to 300 men.
Judges 8:22–23—Gideon refuses to be king.
Study the lesson and decide how you want to teach the children the scripture account (see “Preparing Your Lessons,” p. vi, and “Teaching from the Scriptures,” p. vii). Select the discussion questions and enrichment activities that will best help the children achieve the purpose of the lesson.
Write several questions, such as the following, on separate slips of paper (see the attention activity):
My little sister scribbled on my book. What should I do?
How can I show respect to my parents?
Why should I help keep our home clean?
Should I trust my friend if he has lied to me before?
A Bible for each child.
Picture 6-31, Gideon Defeats the Midianites.
Invite a child to give the opening prayer.
You may use one or more of the following activities any time during the lesson or as a review, summary, or challenge.
Discuss the following statement with the children:
“We can take strength from the example of Gideon. You will remember how Gideon and his army faced the overwhelming strength of forces vastly superior in equipment and in number. … The outcome of that mighty battle is recorded in one short sentence: ‘And they stood every man in his place …’ (Judges 7:21), and the victory was won.
“Today, we are encamped against the greatest array of sin, vice, and evil ever assembled before our eyes. Such formidable enemies may cause lesser hearts to shrink or shun the fight. But the battle plan whereby we fight to save the souls of men is not our own. It was provided … by the inspiration and revelation of the Lord. … I pray that each of us will stand in his or her appointed place, that the battle for the souls of men will indeed be won” (Thomas S. Monson, “Correlation Brings Blessings,” Relief Society Magazine, Apr. 1967, pp. 246–47).
Think of several challenges facing the children in your class that could be considered some of the battles of life. (For example: You are tempted to smoke a cigarette, or your favorite team is on television at the same time you should be in church.) Toss a beanbag to one of the children. Describe one of the battles of life. Have that child tell what the Lord’s battle plan would be and then toss the beanbag back to the teacher. Continue until each child has had a turn. Encourage the children to follow the Lord’s plan in deciding how to handle such situations.
On large pieces of paper write one word on each sheet of paper from the following quotation: “And they stood every man in his place” (Judges 7:21).
Hand the papers out to the children in random order. Have them stand so that the message can be read correctly. (You may need to give some of the children two papers that belong side by side if your class is small.) Emphasize the importance of each person standing in the right place, just as Gideon’s men did, in order to accomplish what the Lord wanted them to do.
Talk about times when we stand in the right place, such as attending church each week, not being in places of temptation, and so forth.
Have the children stand while you give them instructions such as turn around, raise your right hand, and so forth. Have the children list some of the specific instructions Gideon was given (see Judges 6:25–26 and Judges 7:3–6). Explain that because Gideon followed these instructions exactly, he and his army were successful. Point out that sometimes we are asked to do things that may not seem important or even make sense to us at the time. If we are given specific directions by Church leaders or parents acting in righteousness, we need to be obedient and have faith that what we are asked to do is important and right.
You may wish to choose a child who obeyed your directions exactly to be the leader next and do the activity again.
Have the children name reasons why the Lord would give us trials (for example, dealing with them helps us become stronger and more valiant, they humble us so we will turn to God, they are a natural part of mortal life, they are the consequences of sin or bad decisions, and so forth). Share an appropriate personal experience when you have grown by overcoming a trial. Explain that the Lord might not take away our problems, but if we trust in him, he will bless us with comfort and strength.
Sing or read the words to “I Want to Live the Gospel” (Children’s Songbook, p. 148) or “Keep the Commandments” (Children’s Songbook, p. 146).
Invite a child to give the closing prayer.