Calling of Matthew



  1. Students should know that Matthew was a tax collector.
  2. Students should know that Matthew was one of Jesus’s disciples.
  3. Students should memorize the 12 disciples.


Possible Lesson Plan:

  1. Open with prayer.


  1. Scripture References: Matthew 9:9-13 and Luke 5:27-39. What was Matthew’s job? Was he liked by most people? Why or why not?


  1. Historical reference: Publicans, or tax collectors, were Jews who contracted with the Roman government to collect taxes for them. They routinely charged more to the Jews than the Romans demanded, keeping the profit for themselves.


  1. Talk a bit about liking people: Make 2 columns on your chalkboard or large tablet, one labeled “good” and one “bad”. What makes someone a good friend, a nice person? Have the students come up with some characteristics. What makes someone a “bad” person? Did most people think Matthew was a nice person or a bad person? Why? Did most people like Matthew? Did they visit him? Were they nice to him? How did Jesus treat Matthew? Read the “Golden Rule” in Luke 6:31-33. Do you know some people who are not so nice? How do we treat people who are not so nice? Are we being like Jesus?


  1. Play a learning game: “Name the Twelve”. We’re still working on the names of the twelve disciples. Print the names on strips of paper and pin a paper to the back of each student. The students must find out which disciple they are by asking the other students yes or no questions. Have the student sit down when he or she thinks he knows who he is. If anyone can’t seem to guess, give clues, e.g., begins with B, etc.


  1. Add to your time line as usual: How would you depict a tax collector?


  1. Close with prayer: Have students each select someone they know personally who is not very likable and agree to pray for that person and do something nice for them this very week.