Journeys with Jesus
Jesus said “I must preach the good news of God’s Kingdom to the other cities also. For this reason I have been sent.” (Luke 4:43) And so He was always on the move!
Bethlehem, Jerusalem, Nazareth, Capernaum, Bethany Beyond Jordan, Cana, Nain, Sychar, Bethany, Tyre, the Sea of Galilee, the Mount of Transfiguration, the list goes on…
As we read our Bibles, we come across these names, and for most of us, we have no context for knowing where He was going.
Jesus told His disciples, “follow me”.
With Journeys with Jesus, we can learn where these places were, and as we read the Bible, we can follow Jesus in our minds as he travels across the promised land.
In this fun and engaging game, you collect places as card in your hand, racing to complete Jesus’ journeys before your competitors do. The longer the journey, the more points you earn. Memorize scriptures for bonus points or for wild cards to help complete journeys.
How to Play
In Journeys with Jesus, you travel back in time to Jesus’ day, completing His journeys described in the gospel accounts. Along the way, you learn the geography of the gospels and memorize scripture, making your real-life journeys through God’s Word and through life rich in context and wisdom.
Deal 7 Place Cards to each player.
Place the remaining Place Cards face-down as a draw pile.
Take the top 4 cards from the draw pile and form 4 face-up draw piles.
Place the Journey Cards face-down as a draw pile.
Take the top 4 cards from the draw pile and place them face-up as in-play journeys.
Set the Scripture Memory Tokens aside for use during game play.
The Journey Cards represent journeys taken by Jesus as recorded in the gospel accounts of the Holy Bible.
The card at right is a Journey Card for the journey from Capernaum (named at the top of the card) to Nazareth (named at the bottom of the card). As indicated in the four corners, completing this journey earns you 16 points. The dots on the map in the center show the two endpoints of the journey.
You complete one of these journeys by collecting a series of Place Cards to connect the two endpoints on a Journey Card. Journeys must follow the black lines representing roads or the white lines representing boat rides on the Gameboard and must include a Place Card for each place along the journey, including the starting and ending places.
Many journeys are between adjacent places which are directly connected to each other by a road or boat ride. These journeys require only two Place Cards, the one for the starting place and the one for the ending place. Longer journeys will require more Place Cards. For example, to complete the journey from Capernaum to Nazareth requires at least 4 Place Cards (e.g. Capernaum, Magdala, Cana, Nazareth). The longer the journey, the more points it is worth.
In presenting a journey, you lay down the Place Cards on top of each other, but with the name of the place underneath showing. You lay them down in order from one endpoint to the other. While laying down the cards, you point to the places on the Gameboard to show the route you are taking.
You may choose, if possible, to extend that journey to complete another in-play journey. To do so, you lay additional Place Cards on top of the ending card of the journey until you have completed the additional journey. That additional journey must be complete and in order. An extended journey can start at any point in the original journey, reusing cards already played in the first journey, but only in the same order. See the example below.
You may extend to as many of the four in-play journeys as possible given the Place Cards in your hand.
A REGION WILD CARD can be used to replace any place in that region in a journey. The places in the region are named on the Wild Card and have the same color name and dot as the region name on the Gameboard. For example, in the journey from Capernaum to Nazareth, if you have the GALILEE WILD CARD, you can use it in place of Capernaum, Magdala, Cana, or Nazareth in the journey. You can use the ISRAEL NATIONAL WILD CARD to replace any place in a journey. When you play a Wild Card, you name the place it represents and it can only be used for that same place if you use it to play an extended journey.
At any time, you may use an earned Scripture Memory Token as a Wild Card to replace any place in a journey. At the end of the turn you forfeit the Scripture Memory Token.
Players take turns. On your turn, you:
- May recite from memory a scripture from any one Place Card in your hand.
If successful receive a Scripture Memory Token.
- Draw three additional Place Cards from the top of any mix of the draw piles. You can take multiple cards from the same pile if you wish.
- As necessary, immediately turn over cards from the face-down draw pile to fill any gaps in the face-up piles.
- Present any completed in-play journeys and if possible extend those journeys to complete additional in-play journeys.
- Remove from the game the Place Cards played for a journey.
- Place the played Journey Card(s) face-up in front of you to reflect the score you earned.
- If you have fewer than 7 Place Cards in your hand, draw from the top of any pile as needed until you have 7 Place Cards. Your turn is over.
- Replace any completed Journey Cards with new in-play journeys from the draw pile.
Ending the Game
The game ends when either the last Place Card is taken from the face-down draw pile, or the last Journey Card is taken from the draw pile and put in-play. The current player can complete their turn.
You win if you have the most points earned from completed and presented journeys and scripture memory. Scripture Memory Tokens are worth 5 points each.
Only journeys completed during one of your turns count towards your final score.
- We read often in the gospels about Jesus’ compassion. Similarly show compassion and grace to those in your game. For example, for young players, simply reading a scripture may be enough of an accomplishment to earn a Scripture Memory Token.
- All scripture references in the game are taken from the World English Bible, which is in the public domain.
- Many scholars surmise that Mt. Hermon may be where Jesus’ transfiguration took place.
- John 3:22 references an unnamed place in Judea. We have called this place “Countryside” and placed it on the Gameboard generally between Jerusalem and Sychar.
- Journeys with Jesus has been developed by SDG Strategy, LLC (SDGgames.fun). All rights reserved. To God alone be the glory.
Game Variant Ideas
- When first learning to play, or in settings where everyone is focused on learning and having fun more than winning, players can place all of their Place Cards face up in front of them and players can help each other find completed journeys.
- For a faster game, replenish your hand to at least 7 Place Cards and replace the completed in-play Journey Card after completing each journey and continue your turn as long as you can keep completing or extending journeys.
- For a shorter game, set a specific time limit, for example you could agree to end the game after 20 minutes.
- For a slightly longer and more challenging game, continue play until all journeys are completed.
How to Buy
Journeys with Jesus is available from The Game Crafter. Click the button below to go to the shopping page.