King Saul - Bible study activities
Activities for individuals or groups
Courage in Today’s World
Discuss instances in your own life when you have needed great courage. Describe one incident, then answer the following questions:
Movies about courage
Courage is one of the most admired and universal qualities. To prove this, you'll find that almost every movie you see has a character who must summon up their courage to deal with a situation that is about to overwhelm them.
To test this, google a list of 100 favorite films. Choose the ones you like best.
Find instances in them where a person has to face their fear and overcome it. They may be dogged by fear or doubt and never overcome it completely, but they face up to it and try to overcome or at least control it.
Now look at your own story. Have there been times when you needed to hold on to your courage with both hands until things got better?
Think about your own courage, or discuss it with a learning partner.
The reality of War
World War I soldiers gather round a fallen comrade - like Saul at Gilboa?
When we read about warfare in the Bible, we tend to forget that it was every bit as bloody and ruthless as fighting today. Distance and time have made it seem unreal. But it was perhaps even more brutal than warfare today, since most of the fighting was hand-to-hand. A soldier could see and smell the man with whom he struggled.
Moreover, battles took place near or inside cities and towns. The defending soldiers knew that, if they lost the battle, their parents would be murdered, their wives raped and killed, and their children either killed on the spot or sold into a harsh life of slavery.
This photograph captures the grim reality of battle: dirt, exhaustion, sudden death. It was much the same for soldiers who fought in Saul's army, or David's - or in a modern war.
In the last moments of the battle,When Saul sees that death is inevitable, he asks his fellow-soldier to kill him.
The soldier refuses, and Saul is forced to kill himself. He props his sword against a rock and falls forward onto it. This is not a quick or easy way to die. When Japanese samurai did something similar, they made sure they had a friend nearby, to finish them off quickly by beheading.
Consider these questions with a learning partner or group.
Bible Study Resource: Bible People: The life and times of Saul, king of the Israelites