Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Parable of the Prodigal Son Sunday School Lesson

Use this Parable of the Prodigal Son Sunday School lesson to teach students about how God welcomes the lost.


Needed: Bibles

Lesson: (Note: Always allow students enough time to think about and to give their answers to the questions before clarifying the teaching.)

Part 1

(Have students take turns reading Luke 15:11-24, read it yourself, or summarize it with the following story.)

Summary Story (part 1):

Jesus told a story that went something like this: There once was a rich man who had two sons. Both of the sons would get half of the father’s money when he died. But the younger son said he didn’t want to wait until his father died. He wanted his half of the money now. So the father gave it to him.

The younger son took his half of the money and went to another country. He used his money to throw parties and to drink too much beer and do all sorts of other bad things. Then he ran out of money. He had spent it all and he didn’t know what to do. He didn’t even enough money to buy food so he could eat.

He went and got a job on a farm, taking care of pigs. It was a gross job because the pigs were always so dirty and smelly. But the younger son was so hungry that he wanted to eat the pigs’ food.

Finally, he decided, “I’m going to go back to my father. I’ll tell him, ‘Father, I’m sorry I went away and wasted all of the money you gave me. I don’t deserve to be your son anymore, but can I please work for you?”

So the son started walking back home. When he was almost there, his father saw him coming and ran down the road to meet him. His father hugged him and kissed him because he was so glad that his son had come home.

Then the son said, “Father, I’m sorry I went away and wasted all of the money you gave me. I don’t deserve to be your son anymore.”

But the father said, “Quick! Someone get best robe and put it on my son. Put a ring on his finger and give him sandals for his feet. And let’s celebrate tonight! My son was dead, but now he’s alive again. He was lost, but now he’s found.”

Review Questions (part 1):

Jesus said that we are like the younger son who went away and did all those bad things. What did the father do when the son came home? (He ran to meet him, hugged and kissed him, gave him the best clothes to wear, and threw a party to welcome him home.)

Was the father mad at the son, or did the father forgive the son? (He forgave him and was happy that he came home.)

Jesus said that’s how God is with us. Sometimes we go away from God and do wrong things, but when we come back to God and say we’re sorry, God forgives us, just like the father in the story forgave his son. God is always happy when we come back to Him.

Part 2


(Have students take turns reading Luke 15:25-32, read it yourself, or summarize it with the following story.)

Summary Story (part 2):

Everyone was celebrating the younger son coming home, but the older son was still out working in the farm field. When he got close to the house, he heard the sound of music and celebrating. He asked one of the workers, “What is going one?”

The worker said, “Your younger brother came back home and everyone is celebrating.”

The older brother got mad then and wouldn’t go in the house. The father came out and asked the older son what was wrong. The older son said, “I’ve always been a good son, but you never threw a party for me. But now that your bad son has come home, you’re throwing a party for him! It’s not fair.”

The father said, “I know you’re a good son and I’m glad to have you, but I had to throw a party because I was so happy that your brother came home.”

Review Questions (part 2):

Did the father forgive the younger son when he came home? (Yes.)

Do you think the older son should forgive his younger brother? (Yes.)

Just like God forgives us, He wants us to forgive other people too. He wants everyone to forgive everyone and not to fight anymore. So if we believe in God, we have to forgive people when they do wrong things to us, just like the older brother has to forgive the younger brother in the story.

Find more Sunday School lesson ideas on our Free Children Sunday School Lesson Helps page.
 

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