TEXT: Daniel 2:1-19, 47-48
The students will be able to tell how God showed Daniel the dream when he asked God for help. They will further recognize that God answers us when we pray.
BIBLE LESSON OUTLINE
Introduction: On a chalkboard or marker board draw a large cloud-type dream balloon, leaving it empty. Ask your class if they've ever had a dream they couldn't remember.
Progression of Events:
- King Nebuchadnezzar dreamed a dream but could not remember it.
- His wise men and magicians failed to tell him the dream, though threatened with death.
- Daniel heard of the king's decree and went to the king, telling him that if the king would give him time, he would tell the dream and the interpretation.
- Daniel and his companions prayed.
Climax: God revealed the dream to Daniel and he was able to tell it to the king.
Conclusion: God answered prayer for Daniel in a miraculous way.
Response:Your students will be able to relate how God answered prayer in revealing the king's dream to Daniel. They will be able to apply this lesson to their own lives, recognizing that God also answers prayer for us when we call on Him.
Nebuchadnezzar was the great king of the Neo-Babylonian Empire, who reigned from 605 to 562 B.C. It was he who carried away Judah in the 70-year Babylonian captivity. He figures prominently in the Books of Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Daniel and the later chapters of Kings and Chronicles.
In Nebuchadnezzar's demand of his magicians and astrologers to reveal his dream, the hoax of spiritualism and astrology was exposed. These and all other forms of divination are forbidden in the Bible because they dishonor God, who alone is the revealer of secrets.
It was Daniel's prayer life, his commitment to God and communion with Him, that made him a truly great man. Were it not for his trust in God he and his companions, along with the magicians and soothsayers, would all have been slain. But the same God who answered the prayers of Daniel and his friends and spared their lives many times is just the same today. He still hears and answers prayer.
- Copy the finger puppets and fiery furnace for each of your students (see Patterns). Allow them to act out the story as you tell it.
- Give each student a copy of the picture of Nebuchadnezzar's dream (see Patterns). Have them see who can be the first to find the words of the memory verse which are hidden in the picture. Have them write the words as they find them in the spaces provided at the bottom of the picture.
- Give the students a math problem that they will not be able to figure out on their own. They will need help in order to work this out, so they will have to come to you, the teacher, or their parents for assistance, but let them know they can get help with this. God can help them with problems that seem insurmountable. He is always there, and He answers our request for His help.
- Give each child a copy of the drawing of Nebuchadnezzar and a child with "dream balloons" above them (see Patterns). As you talk about the lesson, let them write or draw in what Nebuchadnezzar dreamed. Then have them do the same in the other balloon, illustrating an imaginary situation where God delivered them through prayer.
- Use a puzzle to emphasize how, if we don't pray, God won't be a part of our lives. (If one piece is missing, there is no complete picture.) God in our lives is very important.
- Use two paper-towel tubes, one marked Wise Men and the other marked Daniel. Stuff the tube marked Wise Men with paper towels marked with "sin spots." To illustrate that sin in the heart can cause separation between us and God, whisper a few words into the tube marked Wise Men. Whisper a few words into the tube marked Daniel. They can hear through Daniel, but not through the other tube. Why? Pull out the paper towels with sins written on each one. God answers prayers that get through, but sin gets in the way.
- What did the king ask the magicians, astrologers and sorcerers to do?
- What was their punishment if they could not do it?
- What did Daniel do when he heard the king was going to kill all the wise men?
- What did Daniel do to discover the king's dream?
- What did the king do when Daniel interpreted the king's dream?
- What was the king's dream?
- Why was Daniel able to tell the king's dream?
- Does God always answer prayer?
- Use a toy telephone to pretend you are someone calling Nebuchadnezzar to ask him about his dream. Let your students take turns answering you and relating the dream on another phone.
- Show a toy telephone, then ask children how we talk to God. We pray. Illustrate with pictures showing children praying. Stress that God hears and answers.
- Ask the students if they could tell you what you dreamed about last night. Of course they can't! Only you and God know what you dream unless He reveals it to someone as He did to Daniel. Discuss the lesson from this point.
- Have a skit of a child's praying before going to bed, about a problem (needs clothes or father needs a job), and the next day the prayer is answered.
- The Braggy King of Babylon — Arch Book, Concordia