Joseph is one of my favorite characters in the Bible to teach about– there’s so much that goes on from Joseph’s coat of many colors to him getting thrown in jail, to interpreting dreams and being put in charge of Egypt– one of the biggest kingdoms at the time. If you need a reminder that God is with you, He has a plan, and He will not forsake you, it’s Joseph. Let’s talk about the end of Joseph’s story– when Joseph has his brother Benjamin captured in this Joseph and Benjamin Bible lesson.
Joseph and Benjamin Bible Lesson
Bible passage: Genesis 42-45
Before the lesson:
- Get small paper bags and stuff them with paper. In one of them, put something to represent the silver cup. Mark the special one with something discrete so you know which one it is.
- On pieces of paper, write “Egyptian palace”, “jail”, and “Canaan”. Put them on opposite sides of the room.
Benjamin Bible lesson:
- Ask students to recall the events before we get to Benjamin (I like to label all of the places in the story around the room. We move around the room and talk about what happened in each place.)
- Take students to “Canaan”. Tell them that the famine was everyone– not just Egypt. Jacob sent his sons except for Benjamin to Egypt to find food.
- Move the kids across the room to “Egypt”, but leave someone in Canaan to be Benjamin.
- Say: Once they got to Egypt, Joseph heard they were there. He recognized them, but they didn’t recognize him. He accused them of being spies. They told him about their family to try to convince him. Joseph had one brother put into jail while everyone else went to get Benjamin.
- Put one student in the “jail” area to be Simeon.
- Say: Joseph gave them food to travel with, and put all of their silver back in their bags.
- Walk with the students (except Simeon!) back to “Canaan”.
- Say: Jacob didn’t want to send Benjamin to Egypt, because travel was very dangerous back then. Judah was put in charge of making sure he was safe.
- Ask: Does anyone here get put in charge of their younger brothers or sisters? What would your parents say if something happened to them?
- Walk students back across to Egypt, with “Benjamin” and “Judah” walking together.
- Say: When the brothers got back to Egypt, Joseph set up a feast for them and returned Simeon to them. The next day, they got their grain. Joseph told the stewards to fill up their bags with silver and to add him silver cup to Benjamin’s bag.
- Hand all of the students a bag that you prepped. Make sure your “Benjamin” gets the special one.
- Have students start to walk across the room to “Canaan”, but stop them half way there. Announce that someone stole something, and demand to see their bags. Tell them whoever has the object is getting thrown into “jail”. Look through each bag, ending with Benjamin’s bag.
- Ask the students to react like they would if their younger sibling was getting accused of something they did not do.
- Say: Once all of this was done, Joseph asked his officials and servants to leave, and he announced to his brothers that it was him. He asked about his father, and they went to get his father and bring him back to Egypt.
- Say: After all of those years, Joseph and Jacob were reunited and the family was together again. God was with Joseph the whole time, and every step in his journey was for a purpose.
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- Why did Joseph get sent to Egypt? What was the purpose of that? So that he could help Egypt through the famine and save his family.
- What would have happened if Joseph hadn’t been sent to Egypt? They would have run out of food. They would have had to move, and maybe even died.
- Was God with Joseph in the well, as a slave, and in the jail? Yes!
- Does God have a plan for your life? Yes!
After the lesson:
After you finish the lesson, you can wrap it up with printable activities, coloring sheets, or Joseph Bible Trivia.
All of these are available for purchase in my store.