God's Eternal Plan - Lesson 3

By Stafford North

The Family

Background for the Teacher


  1. The student can explain that God send the flood because of the world's wickedness and saved Noah because of his righteousness.
  2. The student can explain why God needed a family to pursue His plan and can tell of God's choice of Abram and Sarai to be that family.
  3. The student can describe the promise God gave to Abram in Genesis 12:1_7.
  4. The student can describe the birth of Isaac and of Abram's obedience to God when he was told to sacrifice his son.
  5. The student can relate the story of Joseph and the circumstances of how the family of Jacob moved to Egypt.
  6. The student can say the memory verse of Genesis 12:3.


  1. Have Written Review over Lesson 2 and Worksheet for Lesson 3 ready.
  2. See that all students have access to a Bible.


As God continues to develop His plan, he needs a family through whom to work and for this purpose chooses Abram and Sarai.

Lesson Plan for Teaching the Class

Introduction: (10 minutes)

  1. Welcome the visitors.
  2. Have a prayer for the class members and for the lesson.
  3. Give the answers to the Written Review over Lesson 2.
  4. Hand out worksheets for Lesson 3.
  5. Work on previous memory verses with the class.

Learning Experiences: (30 minutes)

  1. Q: What are the titles of our two previous lessons? A: The Creation and The Sin. Q: How do these connect with the mystery we are studying? A: Before the creation, God had a plan. At the creation of humans, God gave us choice. Adam and Eve chose sin and so have all the rest of us.
  2. Q: According to Genesis 6, after time had passed, how bad did things get? A:Every imagination of people's hearts was evil continually. Q: Was anybody good at that point in time? A: Noah and his family. Q: So, what did God do? A: He told Noah to build an ark to hold his family and sets of all the animals.Then He sent a flood with the waters high enough to cover even the mountain peaks, killing every all the animals and people not in the ark. Q: What happened after the flood? A: Noah's sons and their wives started new family groups and spread to many places.
  3. Several hundred years later, about 1900 BC, God makes His next move in unfolding the mystery. Q: According to Genesis 12, what does He do next? A: He chooses Abram and Sarai, a couple living in Ur of Chaldees through whom to build a family. Ur was a highly developed city with buildings that were three stories high, the ability to make fine jewelry, excellent weapons, and many lived rather luxuriously. The British Museum has an entire room devoted to Ur from discoveries that have been made there. Q: Where does God tell Abram and Sarai to go? A: To a land that he will show them which turned out to be along the eastern coast of the Mediterranean Sea, right in the middle of the ancient world. He promised that Abram's descendants would possess that land. Q:What other promise does God make to them? A: He would make of Abram a great nation and through him all the nations of the earth would be blessed. Note at this point the memory verse for this lesson-Genesis 12:3-"All people on earth will be blessed through you."
  4. Q: What situation appears to stand in the way of God's promise to Abram and Sarai? A: They have no children and are well advanced in years. Q: How old were Abram and Sarai when they had a son? A: He was ninety-nine and she was ninety when God renewed the promise and a few months later Isaac was born. At that point God changed their names to Abraham and Sarah.
  5. Q: What does God ask Abraham to do as a test for his faith? A: To go to Mount Moriah and there to sacrifice Isaac. Abraham does as God asks and Hebrews11:17-19 says that Abraham did it by faith believing that God could raise Isaac from the dead. God stopped Abraham as he raised the knife because he had demonstrated his faith.
  6. The next major move in unfolding the mystery comes with a great grandson ofAbraham. Isaac gave birth to Jacob and Jacob had twelve sons and a daughter.The eleventh of these sons was Joseph. Q: What happened that brought Joseph the ill will of his older brothers? A: He had dreams that showed them bowing to him. Q: What do they eventually do to their brother? A: They sell him to traders going into Egypt and they tell Jacob that they found his coat stained with blood to make their father think he is dead.
  7. Q: What happens to Joseph when he gets to Egypt? A: He is sold to Potiphar and serves him well, but when Joseph refuses to lie with Potiphar's wife, she says he tried to force her. So Potiphar puts him in jail. Eventually Joseph interprets a dream for the Pharaoh who then puts Joseph in charge of the land to store up grain for a coming drought. Eventually Joseph's brothers come from Canaan to ask for grain and Joseph reveals himself to them. Because the famine will be long, Joseph brings his family of about seventy to live in Egypt.
  8. Q: What happens to the family over time? A: They grow to a host numbering about two million. A new line of Egyptian kings is suspicious of them and puts them into slavery.

Application: (5 minutes)

  1. Think of the power, wisdom, and majesty of God who had a plan before the world began and how He developed that plan over many centuries, working through individuals and even nations.
  2. Study the words of the song "God Moves in Mysterious Ways His Wonders to Perform." Then sing the song.
  3. Consider that this powerful God knows each of us and seeks to help us with our lives, but even more, with our eternal destiny. We need to keep this thought in mind to help us have the right perspective in life.

Assignment and Evaluation:

  1. Study your worksheet to be ready for the written review over this lesson.
  2. Learn the memory verse and where it is found in scripture.
  3. Practice saying the chapter titles we have had so far. They are the shortest way to summarize the story of the Bible. Keep adding each one to your memory.

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