Learning About Jesus — Lesson 2
Jesus Came To Search For People In Trouble
In this lesson we will look at Luke 15:1-24.
1 Now the tax collectors and "sinners" were all gathering around to hear him. 2 But the Pharisees and the teachers of the law muttered, "This man welcomes sinners and eats with them." 3 Then Jesus told them this parable: 4 "Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Does he not leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it? 5 And when he finds it, he joyfully puts it on his shoulders 6 and goes home. Then he calls his friends and neighbors together and says, 'Rejoice with me; I have found my lost sheep.' 7 I tell you that in the same way there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent. 8 "Or suppose a woman has ten silver coins and loses one. Does she not light a lamp, sweep the house and search carefully until she finds it? 9 And when she finds it, she calls her friends and neighbors together and says, 'Rejoice with me; I have found my lost coin.' 10 In the same way, I tell you, there is rejoicing in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents." 11 Jesus continued: "There was a man who had two sons. 12 The younger one said to his father, 'Father, give me my share of the estate.' So he divided his property between them. 13 "Not long after that, the younger son got together all he had, set off for a distant country and there squandered his wealth in wild living. 14 After he had spent everything, there was a severe famine in that whole country, and he began to be in need. 15 So he went and hired himself out to a citizen of that country, who sent him to his fields to feed pigs. 16 He longed to fill his stomach with the pods that the pigs were eating, but no one gave him anything. 17 "When he came to his senses, he said, 'How many of my father's hired men have food to spare, and here I am starving to death! 18 I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. 19 I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired men.' 20 So he got up and went to his father. "But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him. 21 "The son said to him, 'Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son. ' 22 "But the father said to his servants, 'Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. 23 Bring the fattened calf and kill it. Let's have a feast and celebrate. 24 For this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.' So they began to celebrate.
Once again the Pharisees and teachers of the Law were complaining because Jesus welcomed tax collectors and sinners. To answer their complaints Jesus told three parables. A parable is a story that illustrates a spiritual truth or teaches something about God.
The Lost Sheep
The first parable that Jesus told was about a shepherd and a lost sheep.
1. Did the shepherd wait at home for the sheep to find its way back all by itself?
2. What kind of person does the lost sheep resemble?
3. In what way does the shepherd show us something about God?
The Lost Coin
The second parable is about a woman searching for a lost coin.
4. Did the woman value her lost coin?
5. How did she feel when at last she found it?
6. Does God value the person who is lost in sin?
The Lost Son
Jesus continued with a third parable, a story about a son who did not love and honor his father. This son was more interested in the money his father could give him than in loving the father himself.
7. Do you think people sometimes treat God the same way that this son treated his father?
The son got into trouble and began to think of going back to his father. Answer the following questions based on verses 17-24.
8. When the son thought about going back, what kind of treatment did he expect from his father?
9. What kind of treatment did he actually receive?
10. Did the son deserve the reception his father gave him?
11. What does this parable teach about God?
Go to Lesson 3