Bible, Glitter and Glue

Parable of the Prodigal Son

September 23, 2023 David and Mary Nelson Season 4 Episode 9
Bible, Glitter and Glue
Parable of the Prodigal Son
Show Notes

Jesus told a parable about a man with two sons.  The younger son convinced his father to give him his portion of his inheritance early. Upon receiving it, the son left his father and squandered all of the money by living a wild life. When the son came to his senses, he humbly returned to his father and told him he was sorry. His father was thrilled to forgive him and accept him back home.

The older son was jealous of the father’s acceptance because, unlike his younger brother, he had faithfully remained with his father all along. The father loved both sons but celebrated the lost son’s return.

God is happy when we say we are sorry and come back to him.

Bible verses used in this episode:


  1. Parable: At his youngest son’s request, a father divided his property and gave part to him (Luke 15:11-12)
  2. The son left, squandered the money and lived a degraded life (Luke 15:13-16)
  3. The son comes to his senses and returns home humbled (Luke 15:17-20a)
  4. Reunion, acceptance and celebration (Luke 15:20b-24)
  5. Older brother’s perspective (Luke 15:25-32)

Tips for teaching:

  • Talk to children about what it means to come home to loving parents (forgiveness, acceptance, comfort, love).  Compare this to coming home to our heavenly father.
  • You and the children can build an obstacle course and race to “get home”.
  • The son in the story looked at the pig's food and thought it looked good to eat.  Collect food scraps during the week and allow children to smell them.  After the children have fun smelling this disgusting “pig food”, discuss how this compares to food at home.  Use this to discuss further the idea of coming back to God.
  • For adults:
    • Ask the class to get in groups of four or five to read the parable among themselves.  When have you felt like the younger brother, the older brother? 
    • As a class, brainstorm how your congregation could be more welcoming to visitors or other outsiders.  Think outside the box, too, on this. For example, one idea is to rearrange the furniture of the auditorium (or place of meeting) to make it more welcoming.
    • When someone comes to the Lord or comes back to the Lord, throw them a party!  Tell them we have to celebrate!  Your class can organise this celebration party for the church.  

Full teaching instructions free from Mission Bible Class:

Bible Lesson:  Parable of the Lost Son 

Scriptures quoted from the International Children’s Bible®, copyright ©1986, 1988, 1999, 2015 by Tommy Nelson. Used by permission.

Excerpts from Mission Bible Class used by permission.

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