Conquering the Promised Land

by | All Youth, Outdoor Youth Group Games

Equipment needed:
Avery #5164 shipping labels
3″ x 5″ notecards
Poster boards and Markers
Pencils
A large wooded area with places to hide for the playing field.
(We played this at a youth camp during our fall retreat and the kids had a blast.)

The premise of this game is Israel’s taking of Canaan under Joshua.
Divide the kids into equal teams and give them tribe designations as follows…
Tribe 1…Perizites
Tribe 2…Hittites
Tribe 3…Canaanites
Tribe 4…Amorites
A separate group will be the Israelites

Additional Canaan tribes can be added depending on how large your group is.
Write down separately the Tribe designation on the Avery stickers and give a sticker to each one of the tribe’s members. They will place them on their shirt sleeves.

On the Poster board write down a Canaan town that the Israelites need to conquer (i.e. Jericho, Ai, etc.)Shechem is required. The more cities you use the longer the game will take to complete.

On one side of the 3 x 5 cards list all the tribes and on the other side list all the Canaan cities. Give the cards only to the Israelites along with a pencil.

You will also need to have two Poster boards with Gilgal written on them. These will be safe haven for the Israelites during the game.

The game is now ready to be played as follows:
The object of the game is for the Israelites to make it to each Canaan city and end at Shechem

Randomly place the Poster boards around the playing field, don’t let any of the kids know where the Poster boards are being placed. Make sure an adult leader stays by each sign during the game, they will be neutral observers during the game. Keep the kids off in one area while this is being accomplished.
Once the towns are set in place let the Canaan tribes into the playing field to lay in wait for the Israelites. The tribes do not need to stay together as a group.
After about two minutes let the Israelites into the playing field.
As the Israelites try to make it to the various cities and are “captured” by one of the Tribes that Tribe’s name is crossed off the list on the card that the Israelites have and then the Israelite is free to continue on his quest. The Israelites can only be captured once by each tribe. If an Israelite is captured by all the Tribes before he reaches Shechem he is out of the game and must return to the starting point and hand in his card.
As the Israelites make it to a city the Adult leader crosses off the city’s name on the list. Cities do not need to be conquered in order, but the Israelites can’t get into Shechem until all other cities are conquered. Once the Israelite make it to Shechem he can return to the starting point of the game and turn in his card.
During the course of the game the 2 cities of Gilgal are free zones for the Israelites. They can’t be captured while at Gilgal and the Tribes can’t just wait around Gilgal for the Israelites to leave.
The game ends when all the Israelites are either captured by every Tribe or make it to Shechem.

You can either set a time limit and give each group a chance to be Israel with the winning team being the one with the most cities conquered. Or let the game play out until all Israelites are back to the starting point and then change teams. Be sure to change the locations of the cities before each round starts to make the play fair.
This game gets pretty intense, one of our kids thought he saw the Sun stand still while we were playing it. Have fun, we did.

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