Summary: An injured thumb led to this unique sermon on the importance of staying connected to God

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The Parable of the Thumb

John 15:1-10

Jesus was a great communicator, in fact He was THE great communicator.

His teaching held people on the edge of their seats. They said, “No one ever taught like this man.” (Jn 7:46)

Why? What was so great about his message?

One thing that made it so captivating was the method… Parables.

Scripture records 57 parables Jesus preached.

>>Why parables?

Just as “a picture is worth 1000 words… a parable is a word picture and can convey many deep spiritual lessons.

Jesus was the master of seeing God in all of life… in the most common items and the most mundane tasks. He could then use that common thing… something people understood, to teach a spiritual truth.

I like parables too. Though I am not Jesus’ equal, I think I do have a gift of using parables and analogies to make spiritual truths, and today I am going to do that with


One day a man was playing basketball with some young thugs who thought basketball is a full contact sport.

…and they cast stones at him, and wounded him in the head, and sent him away shamefully handled.

NO, that is not it… that is the parable of the wicked winedressers


One day a man was playing basketball with some young thugs who thought basketball is a full contact sport.

And he fell among thieves, which stripped him of his raiment, and wounded him, and departed, leaving him half dead.

NO… that is the parable of the Good Samaritan


OH yes… here it is…

And the youngest one said to the others, this man is a better basketball player than us, let’s hurt him and put him out of the game and then he can’t dominate us. So they fell on him and wounded his thumb, and sent him away shamefully handled.

You can read it for yourself in the 13th chapter of the book of Jeroboam

>>>To understand the parable of the thumb, you must first understand the anatomy of the thumb.

By the way you can stop looking for the book of Jeroboam, there is no such book

The thumb is made up of three bones, with two joints.

>>There are several tendons and muscles which hold the bones together and cause them to move.

>>One tendon, the extensor pollicis longus, starts up in the forearm, runs down through the wrist, and up to the last bone in the thumb, that is called the distal phalange.

This tendon, works kind of like a rubber band, to pull the tip of the thumb back… like this.

When I was playing basketball with the boys, one of them, who’s name will remain a secret but which rhymes with Ethan, ran into the end of my thumb, causing it to violently bent down.

When it did, it ripped the tendon loose from the end of my thumb.

Without the tendon in place, I could bend my thumb down… but could not retract it.

I could bend it back with my other hand, but not without help

I went to the doctor and he explained that the tendon was torn.

He also explained two treatment options.

The first was surgery, where they would cut the thumb open and surgically reattach the tendon to the bone.

The second was to splint it for two months.

The Doctor told me that the splint would hold the thumb in place and the tendon would reattach.

That is good, I don’t want surgery, but I had a question I just had to ask… You did not x-ray my thumb when the splint was on, how can you know the tendon and the bone are touching?

Now his answer was… experience…” we have been doing this for 70 to 100 years and it works.”

When I left there, I was sitting in the car, looking at this monstrosity and it hit me… I know why it works…

>>Psalm 139:14 “I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.”

God planned it, thousands of years ago, before he created Adam, God designed this incredible body, and He decided how things would fit together and work.

>>And He created the DNA code that tells each bone, each muscle, each tendon, and each cell where it belongs and how it is to work.

And unless there is some injury, like mine… or some disease, like cancer… or some disturbance of the DNA code, like birth defects… all of those atoms and protons and neutrons will do as God planned and every part of our body will be in the right place and do exactly what it was intended to do.

Thousands of years ago God told my tendon where it belongs and if I will just allow it, that tendon will find its place and reattach itself.

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