Lesson Overview: What does it mean to live generously? And why should we, as believers, live generously? This youth group lessons dives into generosity by unpacking one of Jesus’s famous parables. It ultimately uncovers that God is generous toward us, and we can be generous toward others.

Bible: Philippians 4:19; Matthew 20:1-16; Luke 6:38

Bottom Line: God is generous.

Capture: Grab their attention with an illustration.

  • Illustration/Story: How many of you had some funny first words? You didn’t say the typical “mama” or “dada” first, you said something off the wall?! Babies are funny!And they learn everything one word at a time. You know what else babies are? Selfish! I’m not kidding. There’s one word they use over and over, and it demonstrates just how selfish they are. Do you know what it is? “Mine.”
  • Babies and toddlers love to use the word “mine.” Why? Because it comes natural to receive, but it doesn’t come as natural to give! Generosity is learned.

Connect: Connect them to God’s word.

  • Tension Question: Did you know that God is generous toward you? It’s true. Maybe you feel like God hasn’t given you much, but I promise you’re wrong. Unlike us, generosity is God’s nature. Over the next few weeks, we’re going to examine the parables Jesus told about the nature of God. And in tonight’s parable you’re going to see that God loves to give to us — it’s who He is!
  • Scripture: Philippians 4:19 — Scripture is clear — God supplies everything we could ever need.

Consider: What does this mean for us today?

  • Scripture: Matthew 20:1-16 — Give context to this parable. Parables are stories that are told that reveal deeper truths using illustrations.This parable was told by Jesus to reveal part of God’s nature to His followers.
  • The workers who had worked all day in this vineyard Jesus was talking about watched new workers come in all day. Every time a new group of workers came in, they assumed they would be paid more. When the new workers got paid first and they received an entire day’s wage, the workers who had been there all day were stoked. They were sure they were about to be paid even more than they originally thought.
  • What was the master’s response when those workers were angry? He said he wanted to give! He wanted to operate in generosity even if the new workers hadn’t earned it.
  • The master’s compensation of the new workers didn’t mean he was unjust toward the old workers. It just meant he operated in a way they didn’t expect. God is the same way. He is just and He is generous.
  • Bottom Line: God is generous.

Collide: How do we apply this in our lives?

  • Scripture: Luke 6:38 — What do we do in response to God’s generosity? We emulate it in our own lives. We live in generosity toward others.
  • The truth is, God was generous toward all of us when He gave His son Jesus in exchange for us. That’s more generosity than we deserve. The only appropriate way to respond is in generosity toward others that we encounter.
  • Story: Share about a time in your life that you went out of your way to be generous to someone else. How did that generosity come back to you?
  • Generosity is a cycle. When you give it, you get it back. It’s a scriptural principle.
  • Application: Love other people the way God loves you!

Call: How do we respond to the message?

  • Altar moment: Tonight, ask God to show you who in your life you could show generosity to. When we operate in generosity, we operate in the image and likeness of our Father in heaven, becoming more conformed to the image He’s called us to!
  • Small Group Questions:
  1. Do you think parables are an effective way to communicate? Why or why not?
  2. Why do you think the master paid the late workers the same as the early workers?
  3. Has God ever showed you more generosity than you deserved? Tell us about it.
  4. Who is someone you can show more generosity to in your life this week?


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