Drawing Kids Close to God’s Unchanging Heart
Volume 3 [Lessons 52-68: Joshua-Malachi] God with Israel, Part 2
Finally—as God had promised Abraham--God took back His Land and gave it to His people, where they were to show the world what a blessing it is to worship the One True God and have Him with you. [Joshua]
God wanted their hearts, but over and over again they abandoned Him and worshipped idols—so they were continually oppressed. Whenever they cried ‘help’, God sent rescuers. [Judges] Meanwhile, one young woman from a ‘foreign’ nation chose to take shelter under the wings of the God of Israel. [Ruth]
Despite all their blessings, under mostly terrible horrible wicked kings, first Israel and then Judah spiraled downward into—yes, unbelievably—idol worship! Elijah, David and then four other very good kings [including two boy kings!] shine. [I Samuel -II Chronicles]
For four hundred years God sent prophets warning and pleading and calling His children back. I have always loved you, He said. All day long I opened my arms to you, He said. But they refused to listen. So they were carried off to Babylon as slaves; the Temple was destroyed, and God reluctantly left. [Isaiah-Malachi]
[Jonah and Daniel remind us that God has always loved the whole world!]
70 years later--just as God had promised, and with the support of pagan neighbors and kings!—some of God’s people returned to the land and rebuilt the Temple. [Ezra-Nehemiah]
Then there were 400 years of silence as God prepared the world for the Promised Rescuer.
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