To be forgiven, I must forgive
(Friend Aug 2004, suggestion # 2)

To help the children better understand the principle of forgiveness, read and act out the parable of the unforgiving servant (see Matthew 18:2335).

(Children could read the verses and take the parts of the king, the unmerciful servant, his fellow servant, and the other servants.)

Point out that the contrast between the two debts was as if the servant would not forgive a debt of $1 after the king had forgiven him a debt of $600,000 (see James E. Talmage, Jesus the Christ, 3rd ed. [1916], 3967).

Prepare seven large question marks with the following questions on them, and place them underneath every seventh chair (suggested answers are provided):

  1. Whom does the king in the parable represent? (Our Heavenly Father.)

  2. Whom does the unmerciful servant represent? (Each of us. We all have sinned [except for young children] and are in debt to the Lord.)

  3. Whom does the fellow servant represent? (Anyone who has offended us.)

  4. What is Jesus teaching us in this parable? (That we must forgive others if we want God to forgive us.)

  5. How do you feel when you forgive someone?

  6. How do you feel when you do not forgive?

  7. How do you feel when Heavenly Father forgives you?

Starting at the front of the room, have the children count off one by one.
When they reach the number seven, ask the child to look under his or her chair for a question and read and answer it out loud. Continue around the room, counting to seven until all the questions have been found and answered.