October 13, 2013
Focal Scripture Passage:
To lead students to discover six “greats” in Luke 7, and to contemplate how
great their love for Jesus should be in light of what He has done for them.
Read the notes on Luke 7 found in the Sunday School Teacher Book.
Write the word “Great”
on the marker board or chalkboard. For added visual impact you could bring
to class a picture of the Great Wall of China and/or a box of Kellogg’s
(Create Learning Readiness):
Direct the class’ attention to the word “Great”
written on the board. Ask them to suggest definitions for the word.
Summarize their definitions by stating that the word “great” is used to
emphasize the size, quantity, magnitude, or
importance of something. Ask them to name some things or people that
are described as great. Some examples include the Great Wall of China,
Alexander the Great, the great San Francisco earthquake, the great flood.
Ask: “What does Tony the Tiger say about Kellogg’s Frosted Flakes?”
(“They’re great!”). Tell the class that the word great is used to describe
many different things.
Tell the class that today you are going to
teach a great Sunday School lesson. Explain that you are not
bragging about your teaching skill; rather, in Luke 7 they will discover six
great things. Write a colon after the word “Great”
on the board, and then number from 1 to 6 down the left side of the board.
Tell the class that the greatest lesson they will learn today is that they
will discover the greatest reason to love and serve Jesus Christ.
HEART OF THE LESSON
Remind the class that the gospel of Luke tells about the life and
ministry of Jesus Christ.
Ask them what last week’s lesson was about (four conditions for being
blessed by God).
Ask: “Have you tried to live this week in a way that God can
Read Luke 7:1.
Tell the class that Jesus went to Capernaum (locate on the
Ask a volunteer to read Luke 7:2-8.
Ask: “What did the centurion want Jesus to do?” (heal his sick
Explain that as Jesus was walking toward the centurion’s house, the
centurion sent servants to stop Him. The centurion did not feel worthy for
Jesus to come into his house.
Ask: “What did he ask Jesus to do in verse 7?” (speak a word
to heal his servant, without being physically present with the servant).
Ask: “How did he know Jesus could do this?” (because he
Read Luke 7:9-10.
Ask: “What did Jesus say about the centurion?” (he had
great faith – greater than any He had seen among the Israelites).
Write the word “Faith”
beside number 1 on the board.
Note that the servant was healed, just as the centurion believed he
Read Luke 7:11-15.
Locate the city of Nain on the
map. Jesus encountered a
funeral procession as he was entering the city.
Ask: “Who had died?” (the only son of a widow).
Tell the class that most widows in ancient times could not support
themselves financially. In addition to the sorrow of losing her son, this
dead son had probably been the woman’s only source of financial support.
Ask: “What did Jesus feel for the woman?” (compassion).
Explain the difference between pity or sorrow and compassion: pity or
sorrow are emotions of sadness at the plight of someone, but compassion is
love in action.
Ask: “What did Jesus’ compassion cause Him to do?” (raise the
son from the dead).
Write the word “Compassion”
beside number 2 on the board.
Tell the class that Jesus Christ has great compassion.
A Great Question.
Ask a volunteer to read Luke 7:19-20.
Remind the class that John the Baptist was in prison.
Ask: “What did John want to know?” (if Jesus was the promised
Messiah, or if they should continue looking for another).
Tell the class that this is a great question.
Write the word “Question”
beside number 3 on the board.
Explain that this is a great question because every person on
the planet must answer it: Who is Jesus? Is He really the Son of God and
the only Savior available to mankind or was He just a false prophet? The
proper answer to that question is essential to salvation.
Read Luke 7:21-23.
Ask the class how Jesus answered John’s question (by His actions – He
was doing the things the Old Testament prophecies said the Messiah would do;
in other words Jesus’ actions spoke louder than words).
A Great Prophet.
Ask a volunteer to read Luke 7:24-28.
Ask: “What did Jesus ask the people three times concerning John
the Baptist?” (What did you go out into the wilderness to see?).
Jesus told the people John was not a wimpy weakling (verse 24) and he
was not a wealthy ruler (verse 25).
Ask: “According to verse 26, what did He say John was?” (a
Note that Jesus quoted scripture (Mal. 3:1) in verse 27 to prove that
John was God’s messenger, sent to prepare people for the coming of the
Ask: “What did Jesus say about John in verse 28?” (he was a
great prophet; in fact, there has never been a greater prophet).
Write the word “Prophet”
beside number 4 on the board.
Ask a volunteer to read Luke 7:29-30.
Ask: “How did the Pharisees and lawyers react to Jesus’ words
about John?” (they rejected them).
Explain that Jesus’ praise for John’s ministry was a rebuke to the
Pharisees and lawyers, because they rejected John and his ministry. Since
they rejected John but Jesus praised John, they also rejected Jesus’ words.
Ask: “Can you reject Jesus’ words and be right with God?”
Tell the class that in verses 31-35 Jesus said nothing He or John had
done could please the Jews.
Write the word “Rejection”
beside number 5 on the board.
Tell the class that rejecting Jesus is great rejection,
because it has eternal consequences.
Read Luke 7:36-39.
Explain what the woman did.
Ask: “What did the Pharisee think of this?” (he doubted Jesus
was really a prophet, because He had allowed a sinful woman to touch Him).
Remind the class that the Pharisees thought contact with a sinner
made one unclean.
Read Luke 7:40-50.
Ask the class what Jesus taught through the story of the two debtors
(verses 41-43; that our love and gratitude for one who forgives us is
proportional to how much we were forgiven).
Note the contrasts between the way the Pharisee (Simon) treated Jesus
and the way the woman treated Him (verses 44-46).
Ask: “According to verse 47, who did Jesus say would love Him
most?” (one who had been forgiven much).
Write the word “Gratitude”
beside number 6 on the board.
Tell the class that this sinful woman had great gratitude for
Jesus, so she didn’t mind humbling herself in front of others and openly
expressing her love for and service to Him.
Review the lesson by reading the six great things written on the board.
Remind the class who exhibited or is represented by each of the six great
Tell the class that the woman who came to
Jesus in the Pharisee’s house had great love for Jesus because she
realized how terrible her sin was and the greatness of Jesus’ mercy toward
her. Her great gratitude motivated her great love.
Ask: “How much do you love Jesus? Do you
love Him enough to serve Him faithfully? Do you love Him enough to humble
yourself at His feet like that woman did? Do you even love Him enough to
come back to church tonight?”
Tell the class that the realization of what
Jesus has done for us should cause us to love and serve Him. Ask: “How
much do you owe Jesus? How much has He done for you? Has He forgiven your
sin? Has He given you eternal life and promised you a home in heaven?”
Remind the class that before Jesus came into
their lives they were dirty, filthy, corrupt sinners headed for eternal
torment in hell. They faced a life of hurt, heartache, and disappointment,
followed by an endless existence in the fires of hell. Stress the fact that
if we truly contemplate what Jesus has done for us we will love Him and
serve Him more devotedly than ever before.
Ask everyone to bow their head and close
their eyes. Ask them to contemplate for a moment how much gratitude and
love they owe Jesus Christ. Wait a few moments and then voice a closing
Ask everyone to memorize Luke 7:47. Tell them to remind themselves
daily of all Jesus has done for them. Thinking about that should motivate
them to express their gratitude and love to Him.