What am I worth? – Zacchaeus

Bible base:

Psalm 139:13,15; 1 Samuel 16:7; Ephesians 2:10; Luke 19:1–10


To help students consider that each one of them is valuable to God.

Things you’ll need:

1. Ten cards with one name each of people who are currently media celebrities (pop, sporting and political celebrities), for example:

  • Ronaldo
  • Victoria Beckham
  • Tony Blair
  • George W Bush
  • Sir Paul McCartney
  • Sir Elton John
  • Mohammed Al Fayed
  • Sven Goran Ericksson
  • Bono
  • Richard Whiteley.

2. Current pop video/DVD, video/DVD player and TV.


  • Prepare the cards.
  • Before the assembly, set up equipment to show the pop video and make sure it’s ready to start.


1 Ask for ten volunteers and give each one a card. Give them one minute to arrange themselves into the order of what they think each character is worth – the most valuable on the left and least valuable on the right. Encourage some response from your audience. Do they agree with this order? Would they say some of the characters are worth more or less?

Ask your volunteers to go back to their places.

2 Now give your audience the following choices, allowing some response after each. You might want to substitute other examples which are more current or appropriate to your audience.

Would you rather have:

  • Prada/Next/George at Asda?
  • Holiday in Bahamas/holiday in Spain/holiday in Bognor?
  • Friends like Brad Pitt/Busted/Pauline Fowler?
  • 4 bed-roomed house in Surrey/semi in Bolton/1 bed-roomed flat in Toxteth?
  • Satellite TV, all channels/5 channels on a portable/flickering black and white?
  • Champagne/Bucks fizz/Tizer
  • Mercedes SLK/5-door Fiat Punto/B reg Volvo with rust?

Note: Adapt the examples here to suit the area and school you are in.

3 Watch a pop video by a current and popular band or artist. Ask the students:

  • Why do we want to be like these people?
  • What qualities do they have?


  1. Say that Christians believe the good news is that God loves us all, whatever we’re like. He is not impressed by things like wealth, beauty, fame or talent. He is interested in what we are like on the inside.
  2. Briefly tell the story of Zacchaeus (Luke 19:1–10). Comment that Jesus loved Zacchaeus (the cheating tax collector) for who he was, not for what he had or hadn’t done. This is a picture of how he loves us too. Christians believe that God created us and we are unique, and he places a high value on all of us. He has a purpose for each person here, even though that might not including getting a number 1 single in the charts!


Encourage the young people to close their eyes as you read the following verses:

  • Psalm 139:13,15
  • 1 Samuel 16:7
  • Ephesians 2:10

Give the opportunity for response in a time of quiet, encouraging the young people to think about what they mean to God, and what plans he might have for them in the future.



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