Luke 15: 1-7 PARABLE OF THE LOST SHEEP
“I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me” (John 10:14)
A possible ‘way in’ to the parable for children…
- Put your hand up if you have ever been shopping and got lost?
- What did it feel like?
- Give an example from your own experience as a child…
- What did it feel like to be ‘found’?
1-3 By this time a lot of men and women of doubtful reputation were hanging around Jesus, listening intently. The Pharisees and religion scholars were not pleased, not at all pleased. They growled, “He takes in sinners and eats meals with them, treating them like old friends.” Their grumbling triggered this story.
4-7 “Suppose one of you had a hundred sheep and lost one. Wouldn’t you leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness and go after the lost one until you found it? When found, you can be sure you would put it across your shoulders, rejoicing, and when you got home call in your friends and neighbours, saying, ‘Celebrate with me! I’ve found my lost sheep!’ Count on it—there’s more joy in heaven over one sinner’s rescued life than over ninety-nine good people in no need of rescue.
Points worth emphasising…
- We all matter to God
- No one is more or less important
- Jesus is the Good Shepherd, who cares for us like a shepherd cares for lambs and sheep
Way to lead into the memory verse… (scarf or short rope needed)
- Simon says
- Follow my leader… first with eyes closed (holding on to a scarf held by the leader)… this is NOT the way to follow Jesus
- Follow my leader… with eyes open but going the same way as the leader … this IS the way to follow Jesus
JESUS SAID: “I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me” (John 10: 14)
In two teams, the children guess the letters of the text, suggesting one NUMBER at a time. A dash is used for all the letters including “John”. The letters attached to that number are written on the appropriate dash. For example, a child from Team 1 might suggest number 3, which (unknown to the children, of course) stands for the letter “O”, so Team 1 gain three points. Team 2 then choose a number.
The choosing is random but engages the children until the very end.
Scoring (points in red)
1 = K (2)
2 = J (1)
3 = O (4)
4 = I (3)
5 = T (1)
6 = R (1)
7 = U (1)
8 = E (9)
9 = W (2)
10 = S (6)
11 = A (3)
12 = D (4)
13 = N (3)
14= H (5)
15 = G (1)
16 = M (3)
17 = Y (2)
18 = P (3)
Roll a die to gain extra points