“May 6–12. Luke 12–17; John 11: ‘Rejoice with Me; for I Have Found My Sheep Which Was Lost’” Come, Follow Me—For Individuals and Families: New Testament 2019 (2019)
“May 6–12. Luke 12–17; John 11,” Come, Follow Me—For Individuals and Families: 2019
Record Your Impressions
In most situations, 99 out of 100 would be considered excellent—but not when such numbers stand for beloved children of God (see D&C 18:10). In that case, even one soul merits a thorough, desperate search “until [we] find it” (Luke 15:4), as the Savior taught in the parable of the lost sheep. Then the rejoicing can begin, for “joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance” (Luke 15:7). If that seems unfair, it’s helpful to remember that, in truth, there are none who “need no repentance.” We all need rescuing. And we all can participate in the rescue, rejoicing together over every soul who is saved (see D&C 18:15–16).
Why would God say “Thou fool” to a hardworking, successful man who had built great barns and filled them with the fruits of his labors? (see Luke 12:16–21). In these chapters in Luke, the Savior teaches several parables that can help us lift our sights beyond the worldly to the eternal. Some of these parables are listed here. How would you summarize the message of each? What do you think the Lord is telling you?
The foolish rich man (Luke 12:13–21)
The great supper (Luke 14:12–24)
The prodigal son (Luke 15:11–32)
The unjust steward (Luke 16:1–12)
The rich man and Lazarus (Luke 16:19–31)
Have you ever wondered how Heavenly Father feels about those who have sinned or are otherwise “lost”? The Pharisees and scribes criticized Jesus for even associating with such people. In response, Jesus told three parables, found in Luke 15—the parables of the lost sheep, the lost coin, and the prodigal son.
As you read these parables, consider making a list of similarities and differences between them. For example, you could look for what was lost and why, how it was found, and how people reacted when it was found. What messages did Jesus have for those who are “lost”—including those who don’t think they are lost? What messages did He have for people who seek those who are lost?
Of course, it is always better not to become lost. Regarding Luke 15:7, Elder James E. Talmage wrote, “There is no justification for the inference that a repentant sinner is to be given precedence over a righteous soul who had resisted sin” (Jesus the Christ , 461). However, all of us sin and need rescuing, and the comforting message of the Savior’s parables is that each of us can repent and return to righteousness, for God desires that not one soul should perish.
Elder James E. Talmage explained one lesson we can learn from the parable: “Be diligent; for the day in which you can use your earthly riches will soon pass. Take a lesson from even the dishonest and the evil; if they are so prudent as to provide for the only future they think of, how much more should you, who believe in an eternal future, provide therefor! If you have not learned wisdom and prudence in the use of ‘unrighteous mammon,’ how can you be trusted with the more enduring riches?” (Jesus the Christ, 464).
If you had been one of the ten lepers, do you think you would have returned to thank the Savior? What additional blessings did the thankful leper receive because he gave thanks? How does expressing gratitude affect you spiritually? It might benefit you to start writing what you are grateful for in a journal, as President Henry B. Eyring described in his message “O Remember, Remember” (Ensign or Liahona, Nov. 2007, 66–69).
The miracle of raising Lazarus from the dead was a powerful and irrefutable testimony that Jesus was truly the Son of God and the promised Messiah. What words, phrases, or details in John 11:1–46 strengthen your faith that Jesus Christ is “the resurrection, and the life”? How does this knowledge influence your life and your choices?
As you read the scriptures with your family, the Spirit can help you know what principles to emphasize and discuss in order to meet the needs of your family. Here are some suggestions:
Do your family members understand what it feels like to lose something—or to be lost? Talking about their experiences could start a discussion about the parables of the lost sheep and lost coin. Or you could play a game in which someone hides and other family members try to find him or her. How does this activity help us understand these parables?
How can we be like the father in this story when we have loved ones who are lost? What can we learn from the older son’s experience that can help us be more Christlike? In what ways is the father in this parable like our Heavenly Father?
To help family members apply the account of the ten lepers, you could invite them to write secret notes of gratitude and put them throughout the house. You could also sing together “Count Your Blessings,” Hymns, no. 241, and discuss the blessings your family has received.
Family members could watch the video “Lazarus Is Raised from the Dead” (LDS.org) and share their testimonies of Jesus Christ.
For more ideas for teaching children, see this week’s outline in Come, Follow Me—For Primary.