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Wednesday, April 04, 2007  

Gory Bible Stories

As I've mentioned several times on this blog, my family and I have been reading through the Bible chronologically this year. Last night, we read about Ehud stabbing Eglon, the obese king of Moab, and about Jael killing Sisera by driving a tent-peg through his temple. After all the blood and guts, my son Caleb quipped, "Gee, I really like reading the Bible! It's got all this cool action!"

I'm not sure I want my son's love of the Bible to be driven by his enjoyment of murder and mayhem, but I guess it's a start!

I've written before how Accordance has helped me deal with difficult passages. Tonight's passages were easy and, in a macabre sort of way, entertaining. But Accordance still came in handy, since these stories contained a lot of geographical and historical details which were just begging to be explained.

The first thing I did was to open a map and overlay the "War of Ehud" route layer on it. This animated route shows the unfolding of Ehud's defeat of Moab, from his assassination of Eglon at Jericho to his marshalling of troops from Ephraim to his capture of the fords of the Jordan in order to cut off the Moabites' escape. By seeing it unfold on the map, I was able to understand the military strategy behind the events described in Judges 3.

By switching to the "War of Deborah" route layer, I was then able to show the events of that battle unfolding. Next I opened up the Bible Lands PhotoGuide to show the kids photos of Mount Tabor rising above the Jezreel valley.

We talked about why the Israelites might have mustered on Mount Tabor and how controlling the high ground might have nullified the advantages of Sisera's 900 chariots. Finally, I used the Bible Art module to show them a couple of mildly gory pictures of Jael showing the body of Sisera to Barak.

So if you ever feel the need to bring gory Bible stories to life for your kids, Accordance has the tools to get the job done. ;-)

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