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The Pharisee and the Tax Collector: Who went away justified? 

Sunday School lesson: Luke 18:9-14  
 
Short Children’s Sermon – Drama / Skit idea: This parable lends itself well for doing a very simple drama.
Have two volunteers act out the part. Minimal preparation is needed. Have one individual knell down and pray, “God, have mercy on me a sinner.” Have the “Pharisee” brag on how wonderful and righteous he is. Ask the children to guess who went away right before God. Explain to the children the importance of confession and humility.
 
Object lesson items needed: None. Have a very short pre service instruction for your two actors.
 
Short Children’s skit / Drama
Good morning Children! Our Bible reading this morning is from Luke 18:9-14. In the passage Jesus tells a story / parable to teach us the danger looking down on others and boasting about how good we are. This morning I have some helpers that are going to act out this story for us. (Invite your actors to come and stand up front.) Jesus told a story about two people going up to the temple (that’s like their church) to pray. The first person was a very religious man. Jesus said that when he prayed he really prayed about himself. (Gesture to the first actor to pray his boastful prayer outlining all his religious credits.) Then the tax collector (or the person who was known to be very bad) stood at a distance and did not even look up to heaven to pray. (Gesture to the “tax collector” to pray his short and humble prayer: “God have mercy on me a sinner.”) Now children, I have a question for you. Which of these two people pleased God? (Or perhaps, “went away closer to God.”) Well, I think most of you are correct. The religious person really wanted to make himself look good. The bad tax collector knew that he needed God’s love and forgiveness and really wanted to change.
Children, we can’t fool God by trying to make ourselves look better than we are. It’s always best to be honest, say we are sorry to God, and ask for his forgiveness and help.
 
Children’s Prayer: Dear God, we know that we always need your love and forgiveness. Thank you that we don’t need to pretend we are better than everyone else. In Jesus’ name – Amen
 
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