Unit 18, Session 2: The Walls Rebuilt
Nehemiah was a Jew living in Persia. He served as the king’s cupbearer. When the Persian Empire conquered the Babylonians, King Cyrus allowed God’s people to return to Judah. Two or three million Jews had originally been deported, but only a remnant— 50,000 people—returned. They set up their homes and rebuilt the temple in Jerusalem. But when God’s people faced opposition in rebuilding the rest of Jerusalem, they stopped. Some 70 years passed, and the walls and gates around the city were still ruined. City walls and gates were very important in Bible times. Thick walls protected a city from its enemies and provided a sense of safety and security. Gates were the center of city life, the meeting place for commercial and social transactions. Without these structures, the surviving remnant of God’s people struggled and was vulnerable to attack. Nehemiah traveled from Persia to Jerusalem to lead the effort in rebuilding Jerusalem’s walls. His leadership was effective. Nehemiah 3 describes all the people working together to rebuild the gates and walls. But it wasn’t long before Nehemiah met opposition from local governors. God’s people armed themselves and kept working. They completed the wall in just 52 days. Note how their enemies reacted: “All the surrounding nations were intimidated and lost their confidence, for they realized that this task had been accomplished by our God” (Neh. 6:16). Now God’s people were protected from their enemies.
Help your kids see that God provided the way for us to be protected from our enemies, sin and death: He sent His Son, Jesus, to die on the cross for our sins. When we repent and trust in Jesus, He frees us from sin and death. We still sin, but we are no longer slaves to sin. (See Rom. 6:17-18.) We may die a physical death as a result of sin, but we have eternal life. (See John 11:25-26; Rom. 6:23.) Nehemiah led the people to rebuild the walls around Jerusalem to protect them from their enemies. Jesus came to protect us from our greatest enemy, sin and death. He died on the cross and rose from the dead to rescue everyone who trusts in Him. Check this session’s Activity Page and Big Picture Card as well as the Gospel Project for Kids Family App for ways to interact with the Bible content this week.
FAMILY STARTING POINTS
Babies and Toddlers
○ Nothing can stop God’s good plan.
○ Jesus protects us from our enemies.
○ Nehemiah led the people to rebuild Jerusalem’s walls.
○ God kept His people safe as they worked.
○ Jesus keeps us safe from sin when we trust in Him.
○ Who is in control of everything? God is in control of everything.
○ Nehemiah led God’s people to rebuild the walls.
○ Who is in control of everything? God is in control of everything in heaven and on earth.
○ God used Nehemiah to rebuild Jerusalem’s walls.
UNIT KEY PASSAGE
1 Peter 5:10
“God’s People Repented” (Nehemiah 8–13)
Royal Ambassadors, Girls in Action, Mission Friends: FEBRUARY
Children are learning that God pursues us because He loves us, and He provides for our needs. In Matthew 6:26, Jesus explained just how much the Father cares for us: “Look at the birds of the air. They don’t plant or gather crops. They don’t put away crops in storerooms. But your Father who is in heaven feeds them. Aren’t you worth much more than they are?”
One of the biggest problems in Cambodia is the lack of clean water. Villagers use their water source to bathe and wash clothes. Animals and insects share the same water source. The people use this same water for drinking. The water is filled with bacteria and diseases that cause illnesses. Many adults and children die every year from drinking unsafe water. William and Nancy Potter* perform acts of love in Cambodia, like providing water filters and medical care for Cambodians in remote villages. These acts of love are opening doors to share the gospel with Cambodians.
Visit wmu.com/pwpl with your child and read stories about ways Pure Water, Pure Love is addressing the problem.
This month, our RAs and GAs are working on their own derby cars and will have a Derby Race on February 23rd. Paul and Keri Cheek are hosting a "Derby Car Work Day" at the church on February 15th. They will bring tools and other necessary items and offer assistance to kids who might need some extra help crafting their car!