Scripture: Matthew 13:1-23, Mark 4:1-20, Luke 8:4-15
- Students will learn Jesus told parables to help people understand godly principles.
- Students will learn every parable has an important lesson God wants us to learn and follow.
- Students will learn we must be careful not to let other things push God out of our lives.
Guiding Question: How can people be like each of the soils?
Materials: flower or vegetable seeds, dirt, rocks, grass or other “weed” seeds, cups
Tell students the parable of the sower. Explain that if they have never had a garden, this parable might be a little difficult to understand. Take students outside. Have them throw a few seeds on the sidewalk. Ask them what are some of the things that could happen to those seeds. Ask students whether or not they think those seeds will grow on the sidewalk to look like the plant on the seed packet.
For the next three “soils” you may want to allow each student to make one of each or make a couple of each for the class. If you can somehow make the parable “work” over the next week or so and show students the results, that’s great. If not, just explain what would probably happen if this were done in a real garden.
One cup should contain gravel. Students can drop in a few seeds. Another cup should contain dirt, but students drop in the good seed. Have a couple of students be “birds” that then drop in grass seed to the same cup. For the last cup, use dirt and just the “good” seeds.
After all of the seeds have been planted, go back and talk about Jesus said would happen with each. With younger students, use a simplification of the explanation Jesus gave for the parable. Encourage older students to think of concrete examples from real life of what each of those scenarios might look like in today’s world. Ask them to think of ways to make sure they are the good seed in the good soil.