The Parable of the Pharisee and Tax-Collector

In this session we are going to hear a parable that Jesus told about two very different men. One was a Pharisee who thought he was better than other people. The other was a tax-collector. Tax-collectors were hated because they collected money from people and often took extra for themselves. Let’s watch the video to see what happened:


Story Video

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Time to Think and Pray


  • Why were the two men in our story going to the temple?

  • How were they different?

  • What did the Pharisee pray?

  • What did the tax-collector pray?

  • Which one of these men did the right thing in God’s eyes?



The Pharisee and the tax-collector both went to the temple to pray, but the Pharisee wasn’t really interested in talking to God or in following him. He was really proud of himself because he thought he was better than other people. He prayed loud prayers about how good he was so that other people would hear and be impressed. He even rudely thanked God out loud that he wasn’t like the tax-collector who had come to pray. God doesn’t want us to be like this Pharisee.

The tax-collector humbled himself and prayed honestly. He asked God to forgive him for the wrong things in his life and was truly sorry about them. He wanted to change so that he could please God and come close to him. God wants us to be like this tax-collector. The Bible tells us that we all do wrong things and none of us are as good as we should be. It is important that we remember this and are sorry about it.

God is pleased when we do good things because this shows that we love him, but we shouldn’t think we are better than other people just because we do good things. The tax-collector did what was right in God’s eyes and was forgiven, and God will always forgive us when we are honestly sorry for the wrong things we do.



Dear Lord, I am sorry for the wrong things I do. Please forgive me and help me to do good things to show that I love you. Please help me not to think I am better than other people but to do my best to be kind to them as I follow you. Amen


This Week's Song: Creator God





This Week's Crafts: Stick Puppet Figures and Praying Hand Booklets


Stick Puppet Figures

You will need: Scissors; colouring pens or pencils; a glue-stick; 2 lolly sticks or straws; and a copy of the printable template

Colour and cut out the circle figures on the template. Stick them back-to-back with a lolly-stick or straw between them to make stick puppet figures that you can use to tell the story.

Craft idea from:



Praying Hand Booklets

You will need: Scissors; colouring pens or pencils; a stapler or glue-stick; and a copy of the printable template.

Print 2 copies of the template. Cut out the 6 praying hands and pile them together. Staple or glue them on one side to make a praying hands booklet. Decorate the hands and write on them things you can thank God for or pray for this week.





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