Basic Truths from the Patriarchs
in the book of Genesis
Anchor command. “Let all the earth fear the LORD.” Psalm 33:8-9
Anchor story. Creation and the first man, Adam: Genesis chapter
1:1 – 2:1-3
Anchor verse. “Since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His
eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being
understood through what has been made.” Romans 1:20
Learning goal. Find who the faithful patriarchs were in the book of
Growth goal. Appreciate how God has worked out his eternal plan
through weak, often disobedient human beings.
Skill goal. Tell others about God’s creation and about the
patriarchs from the book of Genesis.
Outcome goal. Believers have a general understanding of what the book
of Genesis teaches.
Lord, help us to learn from the patriarchs how
people can understand eternal truth.
Learn from Genesis chapter 1 about the creation of our world and of the first man, Adam.
He was the first of the patriarchs.
- How light came into being on the first day of creation,
- How our sky came into being on the second day, 6-7
- What kind of living things appeared on the third day? 8-13
- What appeared on the fourth day? 14-19
- What came to life on the fifth day? 20-23
- What came to life on the sixth day? 24-31
- What did God do on the seventh day? 2:1-3
Know who the patriarchs were in Genesis, and what each
one is known for:
- Adam brought sin into the world.
- Noah obeyed God and built a huge arc that saved his family
from the great flood.
- Abraham believed God’s promises, and God made a serious covenant
- Isaac was the promised son, born miraculously, through whom
the covenant would be carried out.
- Jacob sought God’s blessing, and was the father of Israel’s 12
- Joseph’s jealous brothers sold him as a slave, but he later
became their protector.
During the week. You and your co-workers tell the story of creation to
anyone who does not know it.
During worship praise God for the beauty of his creation, and thank him
for what he provides us every day.
Ask the children to present what they have prepared.
Memorize Genesis 15:6, which refers to Abraham.
Basic truths from the patriarchs…
Adam sinned when Satan tempted him, in the newly-created
world. Genesis chapters 1 through 3. Basic truths:
Everybody sins, because Adam brought sin and death into
the world when he sinned. Read Romans 5:12-21.
Satan tempted Eve with the diabolical lie that by eating
the forbidden fruit she would become wise like God and not die.
Noah obeyed God and built the huge floating box called the ‘ark’ in which
his family and all kinds of animals were saved from the great flood,
Genesis chapters 6–9.
Basic truth: God punishes sinful men, but saves a remnant that obeys
Him. Jesus compares the final judgment on earth to God’s punishment in
the time of Noah, Matthew 24:37–42.
Discussion question: In what ways was Noah’s ark like Jesus’ coming back to
life to give us life?
[Answer: Christ gives to us new life. We are His body. We
are in him, much as Noah and his family escaped death and punishment by
being in the ark.]
Abraham believed God’s promises, and God made a serious covenant
with him, Genesis chapters 12–26.
Basic truth: God accepts us because of our faith, as he
did Abraham our spiritual father, Galatians. 3:6-3.
Like Abraham, people of all nations are blessed when they
believe God’s promises.
God promised to bless all nations through Abraham’s
descendant (Jesus). Genesis 12:1-7
Find in chapter 14 how Abraham defeated five pagan kings
who had taken captive his nephew Lot.
Find in chapter 15 how God confirmed His covenant with a
Find in chapter 18 how Abraham interceded with the Lord
for Lot and his family.
Find in chapter 19 how God destroyed the wicked city of
Discuss this question: Are people saved because they
believe, or are they saved because they do good works that merit
Ephesians 2:8-10 explains that God saves us because of his
kindness and our faith, not because of our good works. Good works will
come from our faith.]
Isaac was the promised son who was born miraculously to Abraham
and Sarah, who had passed childbearing age, Genesis chapters 21-28.
In chapter 22, God told Abraham to sacrifice his
son. God was testing Abraham’s faith. God had promised Abraham that
Isaac would be his heir through whom God would someday fulfil His
Find in chapter 24 how Abraham’s servant went looking for
a wife for Isaac, a woman who believed in the One God.
Basic truth: God always fulfils His promises, even through some
people doubt it. When Abraham got tired of waiting for his promised
heir, he tried to fulfil God’s promise by his own efforts. This
resulted in the birth of Ishmael, a patriarch of the Arab nation which
later introduced Islam and the false belief that people can be saved by
our own efforts (Galatians 4:21-31)
- In what way did the ram (a male sheep) serve as a
picture, or prophetic type, of Christ?
[Answer: The ram was an innocent victim whose blood was
shed to save another. This, like many other Old Testament people and
events, served as a picture of Christ, long before He came to earth.
These examples were to prepare people to receive Jesus when He would
Jacob sought God’s blessing. God changed Jacob’s name to
Israel. His twelve sons’ descendants became the twelve tribes of
Israel, Genesis chapters 25–49.
25:21–34 and chapter 27 how Jacob deceived his older brother Esau to
get his birthright, which guaranteed a double portion of the
inheritance, as Deuteronomy 21:15–17 required.
Basic truth: God’s grace and
loving forgiveness does not depend on our good works. Jacob received
God’s blessing in spite of his telling lies, as Rom.
question: What bad things did Jacob do, and what good things?
Jacob took advantage of Esau’s hunger to rob his birthright, which
belonged to the oldest son and guaranteed a double portion of the
inheritance. He did good things, too; he worshipped God devoutly and
worked many years to get his beloved bride, Rachel.]
Joseph’s jealous brothers sold him as a slave.
chapters 37–50. Joseph’s brothers, after selling him, told their father
Jacob that wild animals had killed Joseph. Others falsely accused
Joseph and they imprisoned him.
chapter 39. Later, God made Joseph to rise to great power in Egypt
because of his walk with God. Genesis chapters 40–41. After that,
Joseph saved his brothers and their families from famine. Genesis
Basic truth: God saved his people
through a kinsman of theirs, a relative who was in a position to do so.
Christ is our kinsman, a sinless man who died to save us. Heb. 2:10–18.
question: In what ways was
Joseph’s life like that of Christ?
was one of the original “children of Israel (Jacob)” who rejected Him
out of envy. His father loved him greatly. He was obedient. His own
people sold him (like Judas sold Jesus). He was taken to Egypt. He was
falsely accused and put in prison. He rose to a position of power at
the right hand of the king. In that position of power, he saved his
brothers who had rejected Him. He revealed Himself in a glorious way at
a great banquet.]
co-workers additional, activities that you and the believers will do
Make plans for
your people to go out in groups of two or three and visit their friends
and relatives who do not yet know Jesus. Help them to tell the stories
about the patriarchs.
Plan with your
co-workers additional, optional activities for the upcoming Worship.
Tell to the
congregation the history of the patriarchs. Select one or more of the
patriarchs whose stories are summarized above, and tell them to the
Explain the ‘Basic
Truths.’ about the patriarchs (above).
Ask the Discussion
Questions (above). Do not give the answer until people have said
what they think.
Memorize Genesis 15:6.
children present what they have prepared.
- To introduce the Lord’s Supper, explain that Joseph gave a banquet for his brothers who
had sold him as a slave. They did not recognize him. He forgave them
and then revealed who he was. We, too, will feast with Jesus in glory
and see Him face-to-face.
- Those who teach children should read children’s study #30.