Wording of this Handout:
Once there was a boy who grew up in a Christian home. One day, when the boy was very young, his father gave him a great big Bible. It was a real beauty, with thick covers and a leather case. The father said:
'In this book are great riches. All you have to do is open it and take them" As the boy grew up, he heard the Bible story about God and his love.
But when the boy was old enough to leave home, he chose to go his own way.
He turned his back on the Bible teaching, and he went off into the world and lived in a way that made his parents very sad. They prayed for him often, but he would not change his ways. He thought that living sinfully was fun.
As the years passed, the boy's parents died, leaving him with only his friends, who were all much the same as him. None of his friends cared about whether he was going to heaven or hell. All they wanted to do was have a good time.
Eventually, the boy was an old man. He was sad and lonely, like he had been for most of his life. He had always tried to pretend that all was well, but in his heart he knew he wasn't.
The boy was poor too, for he had spent everything on keeping up appearances.
One day, when he was by himself in his shabby little house, the boy noticed the Bible his father had given to him. It was in a pile of rubbish, and covered in dirt and dust.
The boy opened the leather case and flicked through the pages. To his great surprise, he found that the Bible was hollow, and in the space where the pages used to be was a huge amount of money!
So there had been" great riches" in that Bible, and the boy had never known, though he had carried that Bible about with him all his life!