My Wonder Studio
Level 2 Lesson Plan: The Pharisee and the Publican
Friday, June 5, 2020

Note to the parent or teacher: Here is a 45- to 60-minute lesson plan to fill out the post “The Parables of Jesus: The Pharisee and the Publican.” (It can also be broken into two smaller sessions.) It goes with the lesson objectives “Study more of the parables that Jesus taught and their meaning” (Christian Life and Faith: Biblical and Christian Foundation: Jesus, God’s Son-2b) and “Learn how to recognize the difference between acting in pride and humility, and how to work toward making one’s reactions humble” (Character Building: Values and Virtues: Humility-2f).

ReadThe Parables of Jesus: The Pharisee and the Publican.” (You can also read this parable in Luke 18:9–14.)

Explain to the children that the Pharisees in Jesus’ day were a group of holy men who were very devout and strived to obey even the tiniest part of the Jewish religious laws as part of their passion for God. Talk together about why many people in those days would consider the Pharisees to be such righteous men.

Ask the children if they can name one or two well-known New Testament men who were Pharisees. Answer: Nicodemus (John 3:1–3) and Gamaliel (Acts 5:34–40).

Ask the children if they can recall stories about other Pharisees accusing Jesus of not upholding the law. Answers could include: The disciples ate corn from a field on the Sabbath (Matthew 12:1–8); Jesus healed a man’s withered hand on the Sabbath (Matthew 12:9–15). Other examples of the Pharisees’ interaction with Jesus where their legalistic reactions are exposed can be found in Luke 14:1–24 and John 8:1–11.

Explain to the children that the publicans in Jesus’ day were tax collectors, often Jewish, who collected taxes from the Jewish people for the Roman government. Then discuss how the people of Israel might hold the publicans in disdain because they collected taxes for the foreign Roman government that ruled their land and also would often make the people pay extra that these tax collectors would keep for themselves.

Ask the children if they can name two well-known New Testament men who were publicans. Answer: Matthew (see Matthew 10:3) and Zacchaeus (Luke 19:2).

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Reread the last paragraph of “The Parables of Jesus: The Pharisee and the Publican.”

Discuss together why Jesus said this.

ReadPower-Up Devotional #11: Spirit Fruit: Gentleness and Meekness.” 

ReadThe Benefits of Humility.”

Each one reflect silently on a time when he or she might have thought they were a better person than others and how that opinion can hinder a friendship or interaction.

Pray together for a meek and humble attitude.

Each one reflect silently on one’s personal life and consider occasions when he or she was greedy or selfish and what effect it had on others or on oneself.

Pray together a prayer of thanksgiving for God’s love manifested in His forgiveness and acceptance of each person.

Review the verses in “Crazily Cool Cards Set: Forgiveness.”

Additional reading: 

Compiled by My Wonder Studio staff.
Copyright © 2020 by The Family International
Tagged: parables of jesus, parables, humility, level 2 lesson plan