The Good Samaritan
TEXT: Luke 10:25-37
- supplemental scriptures
Leviticus 25:35; Matthew 25:35; John 13:35; Romans 13:10; 15:1-2; 1 Thessalonians 3:12; 1 John 4:20
The students will be able to relate the story of the Good Samaritan and explain how he was a good example of showing love and helpfulness to his neighbor.
- memory verse
Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. — Matthew 22:39
- bible lesson outline
Introduction: Show a picture of a child doing a kind deed. Lead into the fact that Jesus told a story about a man who showed great kindness.
- A certain man, while traveling, was injured and robbed.
- A priest and a Levite passed by but ignored his need for help.
- A Samaritan, who was of a nationality generally despised by the injured man's countrymen, came by and gave aid.
Climax: Jesus indicated that the injured man's neighbor was the one who offered assistance.
Conclusion: We have a responsibility to show kindness to others. Focus on memory verse.
Response: The students will be able to list the things the Good Samaritan did, thus proving he was a good neighbor. They will also be able to mention a number of ways we can show kindness to others.
- background information
In the seventh century before Christ, the king of Assyria conquered the Northern Kingdom of Israel and carried away captive the inhabitants of its capital city, Samaria (2 Kings 17:6). In place of the Israelites who were dispossessed, the Assyrians brought in foreigners to live in the land. These foreigners mixed their religion with that of the former Israelites (2 Kings 17:33). These people became known as Samaritans. Down through the centuries the Jews looked down on the Samaritans as compromisers and impure. A Samaritan could not be a witness in a Jewish court, they were publicly cursed in the synagogues and considered ineligible for eternal life.
When Jesus gave the parable of the Good Samaritan in answer to the questions posed by this doctor of the Jewish law, it must have come as a great surprise. In a sense, He was saying, "A despised Samaritan who does the will of God is better than a Pharisee who only discusses theology." A man who would please God must be full of more than religion. He must be full of God's love which manifests itself in practical ways (James 2:15-18).
- in-class activities
- Have children outline their hands on paper and then list ways they, too, can be Good Samaritans with their hands. Add the memory verse as a caption and let them take the paper home.
- Reproduce Glad/Sad Sam (see Patterns). Use Sad Sam to show how the traveler felt when the robbers hurt him and took his money. He was also sad when the priest and the Levite wouldn't help him. Use Glad Sam to show how he felt when the Good Samaritan stopped and helped him.
- Make a large heart with lettered sections cut from various colors of construction paper (see Patterns). Glue scraps of flannelgraph paper to the back of each piece. As the lesson is taught, put up each piece of the heart. It also can be used as a puzzle, letting the children take turns putting it together.
- Take several hearts and cut each into a puzzle of a broken heart. Place each puzzle in a separate envelope. Let each child put together one of these puzzles. God loves us so much He not only takes care of our physical hurts, but He knows when our hearts need mending.
- Bring two apples, one smaller or not as good as the other one. Say, "My friend needs an apple. Which one should I give him? Jesus would want me to give him the best apple for the Bible tells us so in Matthew 22:39. My heart feels really good and my apple tastes really good, too, because I pleased Jesus by helping my friend with he best I had."
- Let the children make a sticker heart (see Patterns) to give to someone.
- Set up several activities to do that require two people for each. Write these activities on slips of paper and number each paper. Write the same numbers on the backs of smiling faces you have cut from construction paper. (Have half as many jobs and smiling faces as you have students.) Make each smiling face into a mini puzzle by cutting into two pieces that will fit together. Put all the puzzle pieces into a jar and let students draw one and find its partner. The number written on the back of their smiling face will tell them which activity they are to do together. Use this to discuss helpfulness.
- Make a series of flash cards—stick figures are fine—to tell the story (see Patterns).
- Use small dolls, a paper road, some large rocks, a money bag, Band-Aids, etc., to portray the story as you tell it to your class.
- Who is our neighbor?
- How can you show love to a neighbor?
- Do you think the lawyer that came to Jesus was sincere in his search for eternal life? Why or why not?
- Last Sunday we studied a parable. Tell whether or not the account of the Good Samaritan is a parable.
- What do you understand to be the meaning of compassion?
- Do you suppose the lawyer talking with Jesus was a compassionate man? Why or why not?
- In what ways can people ignore the needs of others today and be guilty of the same disregard that the priest and Levite were?
- What instruction did Jesus give the lawyer? How did He expect this man would be able to do what He said?
- Name some ways you can be a good helper.
- pre-school suggestions
- Bring a doll to represent the injured man. Let the children rub cream on him (ointment) and put on Band-Aids to make him feel better. Do not go into much detail about how the man was hurt. Especially for the little children, it is best to begin the story just by saying, "Once there was a man who got hurt. He had a bad 'owie.' Did you ever have a bad 'owie'?" or something of this nature.
- Be careful of any dramatizations of this story. No matter how it is presented, it seems the man's getting hurt is too vivid for the little ones to accept comfortably. Focus on the nice man that came to help the hurt man. Tell how we can help our friends when they fall, or how we can open doors for the elderly, move things out of the way, and generally be kind to others.
- Bring pictures of children doing kind deeds and book related to kindness.
- Bring a first-aid kit. Put a Band-Aid on each child. (The Band-Aids with characters on them are especially favored by little ones!) Talk about how we need to have someone put a Band-Aid on us when we get hurt, and how glad we are when Mommy is around to help us and make it feel better. Use this as a lead-in to the story.
- review ideas
In a box put some objects that will remind children of the lesson. Let them pick an object from the box. Ask the children questions about the lesson. Give them a little prize for answering correctly.
Make cards with pictures (or words) of the following: grocer, teacher, policeman, pastor, aunt, car mechanic, gas attendant, librarian, classmate, horse, dog, airplane, tree, butterfly, pickle, hamburger, shoe. For each picture (card) ask child if it is a neighbor (true or false). If it is a neighbor ask child how we can help that person. Examples: librarian—we should be quiet in the library and take good care of the books; a pastor—we should sit quietly in church and listen to the sermon, also pray for the pastor.
Present a skit with a parallel plot set in today's terms. For example, a boy has a flat tire on his bike but doesn't have a tire pump with him. Several boys go by but they all have excuses why they cannot stop. Finally one boy comes, sees the need, and stops to help.
Write the words, "Good Samaritan" down the center of a chalkboard or a large piece of poster board. Have your group help you make an acrostic by writing in words around the letters which tell ways in which we can be helpers to others.