LITTLE SAINTS

Adventures on Route 66

LESSON 18-Esther, Ezra, & Nehemiah

 

INSTRUCTIONS:

Complete the lesson. Take a picture or create a video of your completed lesson material. If all material is completed and your picture/ video is received you will receive a $5 gift card. You must complete the following:

  • Adventures on Route 66 Review Questions

  • End of the Lesson Review Questions

  • At least 1 Activity

  • Video lesson participation

  • Email submission images or videos to ctracflint@gmail.com

  • Be less than 12 years old

Adventures on Route 66 Review Questions

  1. What did God create on the 1st day? (light)

  2. Who built an ark to save his family and a bunch of animals? (Noah)

  3. What is Lot’s wife remembered for? (she turned into a pillar of salt when she looked back while running from the city of Sodom, which God was destroying)

  4. Who was the oldest twin, Jacob or Esau? (Esau)

  5. Name a son of Jacob. (Reuben, Simeon, Levi, Judah, Dan, Naphtali, Gad, Asher, Issachar, Zebulun, Joseph, Benjamin)

  6. When Moses grew up, he ran away from Pharaoh and ended up in the land of Midian, where he became a what? (shepherd)

  7. What was the eighth plague God sent on Egypt? (locusts)

  8. On what mountain did God meet with Moses and give Him instructions, including the 10 Commandments? (Mount Sinai)

  9. After 10 of the spies brought back an “evil report” about the land of Canaan, God told the Israelites they would have to wander in the wilderness for how many more years? (40: one year for each day they searched the land of Canaan [Numbers 14:34])

  10. Which judge was a very strong man with long hair whose birth was foretold by an angel? (Samson

Lesson Prep: Read Esther; Ezra 1, 3-8; Nehemiah 1-2, 4, 6, 8-9, and 10:28-39

Lesson 18 –

The Babylonian kingdom (head of gold) was conquered by the Medes and Persians (chest and arms of silver). The Israelites, now called Jews (taken from the word “Judah”), were still captives, but they had a new kingdom ruling over them. Esther lived during the time of the Medes and Persians. Each year the Jews celebrate a holiday called Purim (in February or March). During Purim, Esther’s story is read aloud. Every time the name of the villain, Haman, is read, the audience makes as much noise as possible—booing, hissing, stomping feet, and twirling noisemakers—to blot out his name.

 

Make noise everytime you hear Haman!

THE STORY OF ESTHER

 

In the third year of his reign, King Ahasuerus (Xerxes was his Persian name) became furious when Queen Vashti refused to appear at his feast and show off her beauty. He banished her from his sight and began looking for a new queen.

 

Hundreds of lovely young women were gathered from throughout the Persian Empire. Out of all these, King Ahasuerus chose beautiful, wise Esther to be his new queen. What he didn’t know was that Esther was a Jew. She was also an orphan who had been raised by her cousin Mordecai.

 

One day when Mordecai was sitting in the king’s gate, he discovered that two men were plotting to kill King Ahasuerus. He passed this information to Esther, who told the king. The matter was investigated, and the men were caught. So Mordecai saved the king’s life, and a report of this was put into the official book of records.

 

After this, King Ahasuerus promoted Haman above all his other princes. Haman was a wicked and vain man who expected everyone to bow down to him. Mordecai refused to bow, which made Haman so angry he wanted to kill not just Mordecai but all of the Jews. He convinced the king that the Jews were a threat to his kingdom. A decree was made that all Jews would be killed, young and old, little children and women, on the 13th day of the 12th month.

 

When Mordecai learned what Haman had done, he tore his clothes, put on sackcloth and ashes, and cried with a loud and bitter cry in the middle of the city. Esther sent someone to find out what was wrong with him. Mordecai sent back a copy of the terrible decree and asked her to go to King Ahasuerus and plead for the lives of her people. Esther protested that those who appeared before the king uninvited were put to death, and the king had not called for her in 30 days.

 

Mordecai reminded Esther that she would not be safe just because she was in the king’s house. Then he said, “Who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this?”

 

After a three-day fast, Esther gathered up her courage and entered the king’s court. He held out his golden scepter, sparing her life and asking her request.

Esther asked that he and Haman come to a banquet that very day. At the banquet, she asked the king and Haman to come to another banquet the following day.

 

Haman left the banquet happy and proud at being so honored by the queen. However, on his way home Haman saw Mordecai sitting in the king’s gate, not bowing to him. Suddenly all of Haman’s joy turned to furious anger. Haman decided he couldn’t wait another day; he would build a gallows and ask the king for permission to hang Mordecai immediately.

 

That night, King Ahasuerus was having trouble sleeping. He asked that the book of records be brought and read. During the reading, he realized that Mordecai had never been rewarded for saving his life. Just then Haman came into the court.

Before Haman could ask about hanging Mordecai on the gallows, the king asked, “What should be done for the man I want to honor?”

 

Haman assumed he was that man, so he suggested the man be dressed in royal clothes, put on a royal horse, and led through the city by a noble prince who would declare, “This is what is done for the man the king wants to honor.” Imagine Haman’s shock when the king had him do this for Mordecai.

 

Afterwards Haman went home in bitter humiliation. While he was telling his wife and friends what had happened to him, the king’s officials arrived to escort Haman to the queen’s banquet.

 

At this banquet, Queen Esther told King Ahasuerus that someone was plotting to kill her and her people. “Where is the person who would dare to do such a thing?” the king asked.

 

Fear came over Haman as Esther replied, “The enemy is this wicked Haman.”

 

The king had Haman hung on the gallows he had prepared for Mordecai. He then gave Haman’s house to Esther and promoted Mordecai into Haman’s place. A new decree was written that allowed the Jews to defend themselves against their enemies, so they were not destroyed on the 13th day of the 12th month. Ever since then, Jews have celebrated Esther’s bravery and Haman’s defeat during the holiday called Purim.

 

Though the Jews were in captivity at this time in their history, we can see from Esther’s story that God had not forgotten them. He had promised to bring them back to their homeland, and the books of Ezra and Nehemiah contain information about the first three groups of Jews who returned to Jerusalem.

Lesson 18 Review Questions

  • Who was unhappy when his queen wouldn’t show off her beauty at his feast? (King Ahasuerus [Xerxes])

  • Out of hundreds of beautiful young women, King Ahasuerus (Xerxes) chose whom as his new queen? (Esther)

  • Esther was a Jewish orphan who had been raised by whom? (her cousin, Mordecai)

  • Who hated Mordecai so much he wanted to kill not only him but all the Jews? (Haman)

  • Why did Haman hate Mordecai? (he wouldn’t bow down to him)

  • Why was Esther afraid to go tell King Ahasuerus about Haman’s plot to kill her people, the Jews? (those who appeared before the king uninvited were put to death, and the king had not called for her in 30 days)

  • What did King Ahasuerus do when Esther appeared before him uninvited? (he held out his golden scepter, sparing her life and asking her request)

  • The books of Ezra and Nehemiah tell about three groups of Jews returning to Jerusalem. The first group was led by Zerubbabel and rebuilt what? (the Temple)

  • The second group of Jews who returned to Jerusalem was led by Ezra, a priest and scribe, who taught the people what? (the Law [of Moses])

  • The third group of Jews who returned to Jerusalem was led by Nehemiah and repaired what? (the wall around Jerusalem)

  

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