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The Lost Sheep, Coin, and Son

The following is a list of Bible Truths in Luke 15:1-32, the story of the lost sheep, the lost coin, and the lost son.

  1. Jesus taught His followers to search for people separated from the family of God and to lead those who are separated back into God's family.  Luke 15:4-6, 8-9.
  2. God rejoices when a person stops doing wrong and returns to God.  Luke 15:7, 10.
  3. God loves, welcomes, and accepts any sinner who asks for forgiveness and wants to return to God.  Luke 15:20-22.
  4. All members of God's family should be happy when a person returns to God.  Luke 15:28-32.
  5. To God each and every soul is valuable and worth the effort.  Every individual is special to God.  Luke 15:4.

The following activities can be used to teach the Bible story and truths.

Bible Story Activities.
Search for the Lost.  Use these activities to help the children understand the joy God has when a person separated from God returns to His family.
The Lost Coin.  For the younger students.
Hide chocolate coins in the room and let the children search for the coins.
Explain that the joy they have when they find a chocolate coin is the kind of joy God has when a person stops doing wrong and returns to God.
The Lost Necklace. 
Hide an inexpensive piece of jewelry outside the room.
When the children come into the room, pretend that you have lost the jewelry and ask for their help in finding it.  Pretend that you will be real sad if you cannot find it.
When the children find the jewelry, show your happiness.
Compare your happiness to the joy God has when a lost person returns to His family.
The Friend.  Use this activity to help the children understand what they should do when a person turns from God.  The children can also think about how God acts towards a sinner who asks for forgiveness and wants to return to God.
Tell the following stories to the children.
Raymond and Oscar are in the fourth grade.  They lived next door to each other all their lives and were best friends until last year when Oscar started hanging around with Philip, his older brother, and Philip's friends.  Oscar started cussing, disobeying his parents, and lying when his parents asked him if he had done something.  Raymond and Oscar stayed friends but they did not get along as well because Raymond always told Oscar he should not cuss or be disobedient or lie to his parents.  Last week Oscar finally decided Raymond was right and he promised not to cuss or be disobedient or lie to his parents any more.  They are best friends again.
Thelma and Margie became friends in kindergarten and have been best friends ever since.  About a month ago, the most popular girls in class asked Thelma to join their Popular Girls Club.  Thelma joined.  Margie was not asked to join.  The Popular Girls Club started making up untrue stories about Margie to embarrass her and did not let her join in any of their games.  Thelma and Margie stopped being friends when Thelma joined the club.  About a week ago, Thelma realized that she was not treating Margie in the good way she deserved to be treated.  She quit the Popular Girls Club, apologized to Margie and asked if they could be friends again.  Margie said yes.  And they are best friends again.
After you tell the stories ask the children if they have ever been in any situations similar to the ones described in the stories.  Let them tell about their experiences.
Explain to the children that:
God wants us to help people do what is right just like Raymond helped Oscar.
When a person stops doing wrong and wants to return to God, God welcomes that person back without any conditions just like Margie welcomed back Thelma.
God is happy when a person returns to Him just like Raymond and Margie were happy when they got their best friends back.

Brain Teasers
Coded Message:  God rejoices when a person stops doing wrong and returns to God.

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