LESSON 6: Wandering in the Desert

Lessons in this series: 1 2 3 4 5 6 Overview

After completing this Sunday school lesson, the children will learn that God does not like it when people grumble or complain. He wants us to be happy, and content.


Moses, Contentment, Grumbling

AS KIDS ARRIVE (15 minutes)

As each child arrives, give him or her one of the verses below about grumbling. Have him or her look it up in his or her Bible, read it several times, and be prepared to share with the class what the verse means. This will be done after the Opening Prayer.

Exodus 15:24, Numbers 14:2, John 6:43, 1 Corinthians 10:10, Philippians 2:14, James 5:9 or 1 Peter 4:9.


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MEMORY WORK (6 minutes)

"Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light for my path." Psalm 119:105 NIV
Give each child a slip of paper with the verse from last week scrambled. For example, you might show:
"My lamp is a word for Your feet, a path for my light." 119:105 Psalm NIV
Have the kids unscramble the verse and rewrite it the correct way. Treats can be given to all who get it right.


This week we conclude our lesson series on the life of Moses. In this lesson series, we saw how God was with Moses every step of the way. God was with Moses when he was a baby in the Nile River, when he spoke with God through a burning bush, during times of plagues and dangers, and even up in the mountain where God gave him the Ten Commandments.

After Moses led the people from the harm of Pharaoh, you would think they would be happy and content. Sadly, that just wasn't the case. The people still grumbled and complained, saying they would be better off if they were still slaves in Egypt. Moses constantly prayed to the Lord not to be angry with them. He knew God wanted him to lead the Israelites to the Promised Land. But because of their constant grumbling, no one over 20 years old, except two faithful men named Joshua and Caleb, would see the Promised Land. Neither would Moses see it. Of the people alive during the time they crossed the Red Sea, only children would make it to the promised land. Everyone else would be wandering around lost in the desert for 40 years.

Read Numbers 14:26-35 (The Israelites are Sentenced to Wander for 40 years)

Discussion Questions:
1. What were the people doing that angered God? (They were constantly grumbling and complaining and said that they would have been better off as slaves)
2. God said that no one over this age would enter the Promised Land, except for two men, what was that age? (20)
3. What were the names of the two men that were over 20 that God would allow to enter the Promised Land? (Joshua and Caleb)
4. What was it about Joshua and Caleb that God allowed them to enter the Promised Land? (They had faith in God and did not grumble)
5. How long did God make the people wander in the dessert? (40 years)

APPLICATION (2 minutes)

From this passage, you can see that God does not like it when people grumble or complain. He wants us to be happy, and content. But the only way we can be truly happy and content is to put Him first. Not our selfish desires or material treasures. These things cannot give us happiness. God truly loves us, and does not want to see us sad. But we must also trust in Him, even during the tough times.

The Bible says, "Consider it pure joy, my brothers whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything." (James 1:2-4)

This week, let's remember to thank God for all He does for us. Now we are going to have a little game, to review the past five weeks. 

CLASS EXERCISE (20 minutes)

Desert Venture (Review Game) Click here 
Questions to be used with The Desert Venture Game:
1. Moses was born as an Egyptian? (false, he was born a Hebrew)
2. Moses was kept hidden from Pharaoh for three months. (true)
3. Pharaoh's daughter took the basket from the water of the Nile. (false, one of her attendants did)
4. Pharaoh's son was fortunate enough to survive the tenth plague. (false)
5. The bush that Moses heard God speaking from was on fire, but never burned up. (true)
6. Moses was to tell the Israelites, "AM sent me." (true)
7. The reason Pharaoh's daughter went to the river was to wash her clothes. (false, she came to bathe)
8. When the tenth plague was taking place, loud wailing could be heard from the Egyptians. (true)
9. Moses was crying when Pharaoh's daughter first saw him, and she felt sorry for him. (true)
10. The first commandment is to have no other gods. (true)
11. The Red Sea parted to let the people cross when Moses prayed. (false, he stretched out his hand)
12. When God called to Moses from the Bush, Moses said "Yes Lord." (false, he said, "here I am")
13. After he let the Israelites go, Pharaoh changed his mind and went after them. (true)
14. Moses' real mother was paid to nurse him for Pharaoh's daughter. (true)
15. God told Moses to remove his shoes because his feet are holy. (false, the ground he stood on was holy)
16. Miriam, Moses' sister gave him his name. (false, Pharaoh's daughter named him Moses)
17. When Moses realized he was talking with God through the bush, he hid his face. (true)
18. God told Moses he saw the misery and heard the cries of His people in Egypt. (true)
19. You cannot be a Christian if you break one of the Ten Commandments. (false, Jesus died for our sins)
20. From our lesson about the Ten Commandments, we learned about God's law (true)
21. From our lesson about the Parting of the Red Sea, we learned about God's power. (true)
22. God was going to lead His people to a land flowing with milk and sugar. (false, milk and honey)
23. From our lesson about baby Moses in the Nile, we learned about God's protection. (true)
24. The parting of the Red Sea is an example of one of God's miracles. (true)
25. The fifth commandment is to Honor your father and your mother. (true)
26. From our lesson about God speaking to Moses from a bush, we learned about God's Holiness. (true)
27. From our lesson about the 10th Plague, we learned about having a hard heart and Fearing God. (true)
28. God told Moses that Pharaoh would let the people go after the tenth plague. (true)
29. The killing of the firstborn males in Egypt happened at sundown. (false, it happened around midnight)
30. Some of the Israelites did not make it all the way across the Red Sea. (false, they all did) 



Chose another exciting lesson series from Kids Sunday School Place. 

CLOSING PRAYER (2 minutes)

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Give one copy to each child at the end of the class to take home. Click here for NIV or KJV  [PDF]