This game illustrates the story of Israel fighting against the Amalekites. When Moses raised his hands, Israel pushed back the Amalekites, but when his hands were lowered, the Amalekites pushed back the Israelites. Aaron and Hur held up Moses’ arms to ensure the Israelite victory.
- Exodus 17:8-16
- Masking tape – one roll
- Dowel rod, stick or broom handle to serve as Moses’ staff
- Chair or something to represent stone for Moses to sit on
- Use masking tape to mark one line in the center of the room and two lines on either side of the room.
Use this script or modify to suit your needs.
- “We’re going to play a game to help us remember and understand a story from the Bible.”
- “The story is about Moses and the Israelites in a war against the Amalekites.” (Have a volunteer read Exodus 17:8-16.)
- “When Moses’ hands were up, the Israelites were winning, but when he got tired and lowered his arms, the Amalekites started winning.”
- “So Aaron and Hur sat him on a stone and held up his hands until the victory was assured for Israel.”
- “So, to play this game, I need three volunteers to be Moses, Aaron and Hur.” (Select volunteers. Have “Moses” sit on the chair or other item representing the rock. Have “Aaron” and “Hur” stand by his sides.)
- “Now, I need to divide the rest of you into pairs.” (Line everyone up in a single-file line from smallest to largest. Count the number of participants. Divide this number by two and have all participants count off to that number. For example, if you have 16 participants, half of that is 8. Number off the participants 1-8. Then have the two “ones” get together and the two “twos” get together and so on. Position each pair over the line made with tape in the center of the room.)
- “This side (choose a side) represents the Israelites.”
- “This side (choose a side) represents the Amalekites.”
- “When Aaron and Hur raise Moses’ arms (Have your volunteers demonstrate.), you can push against your opponent only if you are an Israelite.”
- “When Aaron and Hur put Moses’ arms down (Have your volunteers demonstrate.), you can push against your opponent only if you are an Amalekite.”
- “If it’s not your turn to push, you can try to hold your ground, but you cannot push back.”
- “The goal is to force your opponent across the line behind him or her on their side of the room. If you do, you win!”
- “The first three to win their battle will get to replace Moses, Aaron and Hur in the next round.”
- “Any questions?” (Begin the first round. Make sure that Moses’ arms go up and down fairly quickly to give both sides a chance. After you’ve done a few rounds, debrief using the following questions.)
- Why do you think God allowed the battle to be decided by whether or not Moses’ arms were up?
- Do you think God would have allowed Israel to lose the entire battle if Moses, Aaron and Hur had been too tired to keep Moses’ arms up? Why or why not?
- How do you think the Israelites felt about Moses, Aaron and Hur after the battle?
- Why do you think Moses built an altar and called it, “The Lord is My Banner?”
- What can we learn from this story that we can apply to our own lives?