The Parables of Jesus: The Parable of the Lost Sheep | Sunday School Solutions
by Emily Hechler
Sometimes, the children in your Sunday school class might feel overlooked. Perhaps they have to fight for attention at home. They could feel lonely when they miss their friends. Worst of all, they may think that God doesn’t know who they are or care about them. How can you make sure the children in your Sunday school class know they are loved by God? You can tell them through the parable of the lost sheep.
To start the lesson, play a game with your class. Bring 100 cotton balls into your classroom. Hide one of the cotton balls and keep the rest together. Tell the children that they need to count to 100 using the cotton balls before you begin the lesson. When they count to 99 cotton balls and are confused, tell them that the last cotton ball must be lost in the room. Have the students search for the cotton ball until they find it.
In a similar but much greater way Jesus searches for people who are lost in their sin. He wants them to accept Him as their Savior. Read the story of the parable of the lost sheep from Luke 15 to your class.
Jesus searches for people who are lost in their sin.
You might summarize the story to them like this: “In this story, a shepherd owned 100 sheep. One day, he lost one of them. The shepherd left the 99 sheep and traveled alone to find the one that was lost. When he found it, he came back home and celebrated with his friends that he had found his lost sheep.
“Jesus is like the shepherd. The sheep need someone to care for and protect them. We are the same way — we need someone to care for and protect us. We need Jesus. If you don’t know Jesus as your Savior, you will be lost and confused, like the one sheep that went missing. Jesus longs to find you and bring you into His family.”
The shepherd knew he could leave the 99 sheep to look for the missing one because his flock knows him. They knew how their shepherd looked and sounded, and how he led them. In the story, the 99 sheep are the people who have already believed in Jesus as their Savior. When Jesus talks about His sheep in John 10:27, He says, “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.”
Even if one person is lost in their sin, Jesus wants them to learn about Him and accept Him as their Savior. Just like the shepherd who celebrated when he found his lost sheep, Jesus celebrates when even one person puts their faith in Him and trusts Him as their Savior. Luke 15:7 says that there is joy in heaven when a sinner repents!
Even if one person is lost in their sin, Jesus wants them to learn about Him and accept Him as their Savior.
There are other places in the Bible that talk about how we are like sheep and God is our shepherd. Isaiah 53:6 says, “All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned—every one—to his own way; and the LORD has laid on him the iniquity of us all.”
Check out Good News Club TV™ or The Lost Sheep on U-Nite TV® for more ideas on how to teach the Parable of the Lost Sheep to your Sunday school class. You can also check out the Discovering Jesus lesson text from CEF Press® to teach this parable and some of Jesus’ miracles to your class.
Let this parable be a reminder to the children in your classroom that Jesus loves them so much. Let them know that He knows their name and wants to have a relationship with them.