April 11, 2021 – Exodus 5 – 11

Lesson Date: April 11, 2021

Focal Scripture Passage: Exodus 5 – 11

AIM: To lead students to identify struggles Moses had with the world because of his obedience to God, and to trust God to sustain them through struggles they will face for obeying Him.


Before class: Read the notes on Exodus 5 – 11 found in the Sunday School Teacher Book. Get enough copies of the “Struggles With the World” worksheet (attached) for your anticipated attendance. Be sure to have pens or pencils available for any who might need them. Write the lesson title, “Struggles With the World” on the marker board or chalkboard.


INTRODUCTION (Create Learning Readiness): Take about 60-90 seconds to share your personal testimony of salvation with the class. Tell what your life was like before you were saved, how you came to accept Christ as your Savior, and how your life has been different since coming to Christ.

After sharing your real salvation testimony, make the following statements:

  • Since you have been saved you never have any more struggles or difficulties.
  • Everyone treats you with love and respect.
  • Everything always goes your way.
  • No one ever lies to you or breaks their word to you.
  • Everyone is happy and supportive when you try to obey God.
  • Direct the students’ attention to the lesson title written on the board and say: “I don’t know why this lesson is titled ‘Struggles With the World’ – I never have any struggles with the world!”

Ask the class if they believe those statements. Tell them that your personal testimony of salvation is true, but the statements you made about never having any struggles are not. Ask: “Do you ever have any struggles with the lost world?” (yes, we all do). Ask: “When you try to obey God does anyone ever oppose you?” (yes).

Tell the class that Christians are citizens of the kingdom of God and therefore not really “at home” in the world any more. The same was true for Moses and the children of Israel. They were God’s people, but they lived in the ungodly world of ancient Egypt. Tell the students in this lesson we will learn about some of the struggles Moses had with Pharaoh, and compare those to the struggles Christians face in our modern world.



  1. Review.
    • Since we departed from our study in the book of Exodus last week for an Easter lesson, briefly review Exodus 1 – 4 by asking the following questions:
      • Ask: “What was Israel’s desperate situation in Exodus 1?” (they were in cruel bondage in Egypt and Pharaoh ordered the deaths of all their baby boys).
      • Ask: “How did God miraculously preserve Moses’ life in Exodus 2?” (through his mother’s courage, through the amazing events at the river, through Pharaoh’s daughter, and through his escape to Midian).
      • Ask: “In Exodus 3 God established a personal relationship with Moses. What important task did He call Moses to do?” (go back to Egypt, confront Pharaoh, and lead the Israelites out of Egypt).
      • Ask: “What lesson did Moses learn in Exodus 4?” (that God can overcome our fears and feelings of inadequacy with His sufficiency).
  2. Moses Confronted Pharaoh.
    • Ask a volunteer to read Exodus 5:1, 3.
    • Ask: “Did Moses obey God’s instructions?” (yes, he did exactly what God told him to do).
    • Read Exodus 5:2, 4-5.
    • Ask: “How did Pharaoh respond to Moses’ demand?” (he rejected it, ridiculed Moses for foolishly believing in a God Pharaoh didn’t know, and accused Moses of drawing the people away from their work).
    • Ask a volunteer to read Exodus 5:6-9.
    • Ask: “What action did Pharaoh take in response to Moses’ demand that he free the Israelites?” (he made their work harder and laid more work upon them).
    • Tell the students that religious television often says if we obey God and have faith in God everything will go our way – we will always have good health and plenty of money.
    • Ask: “Is that the way it worked out for Moses when he believed and obeyed God?” (no, everything got worse).
    • Ask: “Do lost people ever ridicule us for believing in God? Do they ever purposely do things to make our lives harder?” (yes to both questions).
    • Summarize: Moses confronted Pharaoh with God’s demand to free the Israelites. Pharaoh ridiculed Moses and his God and punished the Israelites with harsher working conditions.
  3. Moses’ Discouragement.
    • Tell the class that the situation became much worse for the Israelites. Their leaders went and complained to Pharaoh, but to no avail. Next, they went to Moses.
    • Read Exodus 5:21-23.
    • Ask: “How did the leaders of Israel treat Moses?” (they rebuked him for making their lives miserable).
    • Explain that not only was Moses facing a struggle with the lost Pharaoh, now his own people were against him.
    • Tell the class fellow believers sometimes get upset with us for obeying God.
    • Ask: “How did Moses respond to this?” (he was discouraged and complained to God).
    • Stress the fact that obeying God doesn’t mean we will never face discouragement.
    • Read Exodus 6:1-8.
    • Explain the following:
      • God encouraged Moses.
      • God assured Moses of ultimate success, reminding him who He (God) was, telling him He had heard the cries of the children of Israel, and assuring Moses that He was going to keep His promises to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob to give the Israelites the Promised Land.
      • Moses told all these things to the Israelites.
    • Ask a volunteer to read Exodus 6:9.
    • Ask: “Did they believe him?” (no).
    • Tell the students that even when God reassures us, others still may not believe.
    • Summarize: Moses became discouraged when his own people turned against him. God encouraged Moses, but still the Israelites did not believe him.
  4. Moses Went Back to Pharaoh.
    • Tell the students that God sent Moses and Aaron back to Pharaoh.
    • Ask a volunteer to read Exodus 7:10-13.
    • Tell the class that they demonstrated one of the miraculous signs God had given them.
    • Ask: “What happened?” (Pharaoh’s magicians imitated the miraculous sign, but Moses’ rod swallowed up their rods).
    • Explain that the devil and his servants can imitate some of God’s miracles.
    • Tell the students when we tell people what God has done in our lives, lost people sometimes mock us and insist our miracle was just a coincidence.
    • Ask: “According to verse 13, what did Pharaoh do?” (refused to free the Israelites).
    • Summarize: Moses went back to Pharaoh and demonstrated a miraculous sign, but Pharaoh still refused to let the Israelites leave Egypt.
  5. God Sent Terrible Plagues Upon the Egyptians.
    • Give everyone a copy of the “Struggles With the World” worksheet (and a pen or pencil if needed).
    • Tell them we are going to skim through chapters 7 – 11 to fill in the blanks on the worksheet.
    • Use the following procedure for each plague:
      • Ask the students to look through the specified verses to identify the plague.
      • Ask them to write that on their worksheets
      • Ask them to identify Pharaoh’s response (found in the verses in parentheses).
      • Ask them to write that on their worksheets
    • Note that sometimes Pharaoh said he would free the Israelites, but when the plague was lifted he changed his mind.
    • Ask: “Do lost people ever fail to keep the promises they make to us?” (yes).
    • Note also that on several occasions Pharaoh offered a compromise. The same thing happens to Christians today.
    • Tell the class the world doesn’t mind if we obey God a little as long as we don’t obey Him completely. The problem is that partial obedience is actually disobedience.
    • Summarize: God sent terrible plagues upon the Egyptians because of Pharaoh’s refusal to free the Israelites.


PERSONAL APPLICATION: Summarize the lesson by reading “Lessons We Can Learn From Moses’ Experience” printed on the bottom of the worksheet.

Direct the students’ attention to the lesson title written on the board (or the top of the worksheet). Tell them if they belong to Jesus Christ they will have some struggles with the lost world. Ask: “What should we do when we face struggles with the world?” (tell God about our struggles and trust Him to see us through). Stress the fact that we are not talking about troubles of our own making that result from our sin and disobedience; rather, we are talking about struggles and opposition from the world that come because we are obeying God.

Explain that Christians are not immune from trouble and conflict, but we have a power within that the lost world cannot comprehend. The Bible says it this way: “Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is He that is in you, than he that is in the world” (1 John 4:4). Stress the fact that we will face struggles, but God will see us through if we are obedient to Him.

Encourage everyone to place their trust in God to sustain them through any struggles they face for obeying Him. Urge them to silently express this commitment and trust to God as you lead a closing prayer.


CONCLUSION: Ask everyone to memorize 1 John 4:4. Tell them to expect the world to give them a hard time this week. When that happens, encourage them to remember Moses and to recite that memory verse. Tell them to obey and trust God at all times.

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