After the Israelites defeated Jericho and Ai, the kings of the lands around them began to fear for their cities. Several cities began preparing for war but the people of Gibeon tried a different tactic. They picked a group to be ambassadors and they put on old clothes, and collected old food and began the trip to meet with the Israelites.
When the Gibeonites arrived, they told Joshua and the elders that they wanted to make a treaty with them. They lied and said they were from very far away and that their clothes and food had worn out on the trip. They said they had heard how powerful God was and they wanted to be friends. Then the Israelites made a mistake. They took the Gibeonites at their word and did not consult God. It they had stopped to ask God about the treaty, He would have told them they were lying. However they went ahead and made a treaty.
After a few days they find out they have been tricked. They traveled to Gibeon and asked the leaders why they did this. The Gibeonites tell them that they were afraid of being destroyed. The Israelites realize it is too late. They have given their word and to break it would be a sin. Instead of destroying Gibeon they make all the people workers or slaves. Unfortunately, this wasn’t God’s plan but the Israelites must make the best of the situation now. We need to remember to consult God before making any big decisions and always carefully consider what we promise.
Provide a couple of small prizes and have your children out bid each other to win them. For example, the first bids 20 pushups then the second bids 25, etc. until one drops out. Then make them keep their word to get the prize!
Bid ideas: Jumping jacks, laps around the house, sit-ups, etc.
Remind them to think before making commitments!