Adventist Adventurer Awards and Answers/Parables of Jesus

Parables of Jesus

Read and discuss Matthew 13:44.


“The kingdom of heaven is like treasure that was hidden in a field. When a man found it, he hid it again. He was very happy. So he went and sold everything he had. And he bought that field.” (NIRV)

Ask - “If you could find a treasure, what would you hope to find? Why would that treasure be so special to you?” “What would you be willing to give away to buy the treasure?” “Since Jesus told parables as a special way to tell us about spiritual things, what do you think Jesus meant? Do you think the treasure represents something else? What?”

What is a parable? Why and how did Jesus use parables?


1. a simple story used to illustrate a moral or spiritual lesson. 2. Jesus spoke in parables - earthly stories with a heavenly meaning. He did so that his disciples would comprehend his teachings and that unbelievers would be without comprehension. Those interested in understanding the truth of his message would understand while those not interested would remain without understanding "Therefore I speak to them in parables, because seeing they do not see, and hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand" (Matthew 13:13).

Name and learn the meaning of a parable Jesus told from each of the 4 gospels.


PLEASE NOTE: Most commentators don't see any parables present in the gospel of John.


NOTE: Most commentators, including SDA Bible Commentary, don’t see parables as being present in the gospel of John. The Good Shepherd, while not technically a parable would work for the purposes of this award. (John 10:1-5) Lesson: If we follow Jesus, we will know His voice and thus our conscience is less likely to be deceived.

The parable of the lamp - Matthew 5:14-16 Lesson Children who love Jesus will not be afraid to show His love to other people. SONG - “This Little Light of Mine…”

The Good Samaritan - Luke 10:25-37 - Lesson: Children who take care of those that other people ignore are a blessing to everyone.

The Unwilling Party Guests - Luke 14 - Lesson: Children who love Jesus will want to invite other people to know Jesus too, even if some people say “no thank you” to their invitation. Sometimes the people we invite to love Jesus won’t look or act like people we might think Jesus wants to have in His kingdom, but Jesus loves whomever accepts His invitation.

The Sower and the Seed - Mark 4 - Lesson: Choosing to accept Jesus’ love is like being good soil so that the seeds of Jesus’ love can sprout in our lives.

Other Ideas:

  • Sower of seeds : Matthew 13:3-8, 18-23. Mark 4:3-8, 14-20. Luke 8:5-8,11-15.
  • Lost sheep: Matthew 18:12-14; Luke 15:3-7.
  • Prodigal son: Luke 15:11-32.
  • Wise and foolish servants: Matthew 24:45-51, Luke 12:42-48.
  • Mustard seed: Matthew 13: 31-32, Mark 4:30, Luke 13:18-19.

Make a craft or diorama depicting a parable.


Teaching Idea: Outdoor Natural Dioramas

After reading the parables for previous requirements and brainstorming other parables Jesus tells, divide children and their adults into teams. Give them 15-20 minutes to go out into the woods (outside near the church, on a trail, maybe even on a park field trip). They can collect materials from nature (nothing fake or manufactured) to make a "picture frame diorama" of a scene from one of Jesus' parables. After they return they have an additional 10-15 minutes to make the diorama. BE SURE that adults help kids and not the other way around!

Participate in a physical game or outdoor activity depicting one of the parables of Jesus.


Teaching Idea: Seed Sowing (Matthew 13, Mark 4, and Luke 8)

Materials: Quick sproat large seeds (Sweet alyssum, celosia, cornflower or bachelor button, marigold and cosmos sprout within five to seven days. Zinnias, sunflowers and morning glories bring even more color and quick growth, while fast-growing nasturtiums multitask as garden beauties that you can add to salads or as dinner-plate garnishes.)

Procedure: In this activity, you collect some seeds and take the Sunbeams outside. Have them scatter the seeds across the parking lot, yard, and other outside locations. Then help them plant some seeds in a small pot. As they scatter and plant, tell them about the parable of the sower. The following week, ask the children if they see any of their seeds outside. Ask them about the seeds in their pot. Use the answers to talk about the parable of the sower.

Teaching Idea: The Unwilling Party Guests (Luke 14)

Materials: paper. Masking tape, and large dark crayons one per Sunbeam.

Procedure: Read the passage. Highlight how the people who finally came to the party were happy, even if at the beginning they weren’t sure they should be invited.

Tape a piece of paper on each Sunbeam’s back. Give each a crayon. Tell them that Jesus is inviting them to a party, but that in order for everyone to be ready for the party, they need to race. They need to work on drawing smiles on EVERYONE ELSE’S back before anyone else does. This will not take long! At the end, ask “count your smiles on your page. How many do you have?” “did you find that you got about as many smiles as you gave? How is going to heaven with as many smiling friends as possible like this game?

Make “Get Well” or “Thinking of You” cards for outreach. Read Luke 10:25-37.