Jethro Tells Moses to Name and Mentor Shepherding Elders

Based on Exodus 18


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Jethro (Also serves as Narrator. Prepare a staff, stick or anything that serves as a cane)
Lettuce grower
Donkey owner

Prompter (Optional). Prompter shouts a brief line and Companions repeat it.
Companions (Optional): children and all adults who want to take part. Make sure Companions know who the Prompter is, and that they are to repeat Prompter’s words.




Hello. I’m Jethro, Moses’ father-in-law.
After the Israelites escaped slavery in Egypt, they wandered in the desert while Moses, their leader, tried in vain to keep order.

Moses, tell us why new leaders need mentoring in order for groups to multiply.


I don’t know what you are talking about. What groups? What mentoring?
All I know about leading is how Pharaoh and his gang controlled this people ruthlessly with whips.

Oh, oh! Here comes the daily mob, to whine about all their disputes!
(Sit facing the group. Act frustrated as complainers vie for attention.)

Bride  Moses! Help me! Help me!
Prompter &

Help me! Help me! 

Lettuce grower &
Donkey owner 


(Stand on both sides of Moses; not in front of him, so people can see him.) 


(Shake your finger in Moses’ face, shouting)
Moses! My father-in-law promised to pay five camels for me to marry his son, but one of the stupid camels is lame! Do something!

Father-in-law  (Shout at Bride) Yeah, I gave your father a lame camel, because he did not warn me that his daughter is lame in the head!
Lettuce grower  (Shout angrily) Moses, my neighbor’s goat ate all my lettuce. Do something!
Goat owner  But you should not have eaten my goat! It was a good, Jewish goat!
Make him pay, Moses. Don’t just sit there! Do something
Prompter &

Do something! Do something!

Donkey owner 

Furthermore, taxes are too high, roads need improvement, and the economy is down.

Jethro  (Approach complainers hobbling, bent like an old man, using a walking stick.)
Go! Go! (Angrily) Let my son-in-law alone! (Wave your stick threateningly at them.)
Moses, you are an idiot!
You let all those people drive you crazy.
Delegate your authority to other elders, leaders of ten, fifty, hundreds and thousands.
Let them handle the easy matters and bring the hard stuff you.
Moses  Well now! Jethro’s advice will help many more folk and relieve me of so much work!
Hurray for Jethro!
Prompter &
Hurray for Jethro! Hurray for Jethro!



Besides simply keeping order, what other important innovations followed Jethro’s advice?

(Good answers: Shepherding elders, small shepherding groups, national organization, the Ten Commandments that God gave initially for the new elders to use to shepherd their small groups.)

Moses named leaders of 10 families, 50 families, 100 families and 1000 families. Most shepherding occurred at which level?

(Good answer: In the groups of ten families, the higher levels were for administration.)

Why is it becoming increasingly necessary globally to form house churches or tiny cell groups?

(Good answers:
In most societies people come to Christ easier in small groups.
Unbelieving authorities exercise too much control over registered churches.
It is easier to reach entire families by meeting in their homes. Children can take active part in worship and know they are an important part of the church body.
Funds not spent on buildings are used to send workers to multiply churches.
Pastoral care of persons and families is usually more effective in small groups.)

How should your (our) church or cell group apply Jethro’s advice today?





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