Parables of Jesus Sample


The Guard and the Four Receivers

Based on the Parable of the Farmer and the Four Soils • Matthew 13:1-23

Imagine the point guard passes the ball to another guard open on the wing, but he doesn’t step to the pass, and the defender is able to steal the ball. Then, a different player receives a pass, but he doesn’t survey his options on the floor and shoots a quick shot and the ball bounces off the rim. Later, a player receives a pass, but instead of protecting the ball in triple threat position, allows the defender to crowd and harass him, resulting in a turnover. Finally, the point guard passes the ball to a player whose hands are ready, who steps to the pass, and lands balanced in triple threat position surveying all of his options. Under control, he faces the basket and takes a smart, clean shot and scores. He goes on to score many more points during the game. Which receivers had a bad result? Which receiver had a good result?


But you are blessed. You understand the things you see with your eyes. 
And you understand the things you hear with your ears.
Matthew 13:16


When Jesus was on earth, he taught people about God through stories called parables. Our story is a basketball parable. It’s like a story Jesus told, but uses basketball to explain what Jesus meant. In our story, passing the ball is like telling someone God’s truth. Each player receives the ball (God’s truth) and has a different result. The first pass is like telling God’s truth to someone who doesn’t understand it, so our opponent, the devil, steals it away. The second pass is like a person who understands God’s truth, but doesn’t let it sink down deep enough into his heart. When hard times come, God’s truth bounces right off. The third pass is like a person who lets God’s truth sink down into his heart, but then he forgets to trust God so his worries and wants crowd God’s truth out. The fourth pass is like a person who hears and understands God’s truth. He follows Jesus with his whole heart. He goes on to live God’s way and shares God’s truth with many other people. Those people decide to follow Jesus and live God’s way, too. Then they share with more people and so on and so on. Which person best received God’s truth? What kind of result did they have?


Jesus came into the world to bring God’s truth to everyone. John 18:37  People hear it, but they receive it differently. Some don’t understand it or push it away by choosing worry and fear. Some let it sink down deep into their hearts and choose joy and peace. They are the ones who are blessed. What are some ways to let God’s truth sink down deep into your heart?




Heavenly Father, help us receive your truth and understand it.
We want your truth to change us making us more and more like Jesus.
Bless us and help us be a blessing to others. Amen.

Why Use Team Sports Devotions?


Engage players with a relatable story or question.
Encourage them to ponder the Bible verse and what it would look like on the court/field or in their daily life.
Challenge players to take action demonstrating their faith in real ways.
Use the prayer suggestion, your own prayer, or ask for a volunteer to pray to close the devotion.



Dear Team Sports Devotions,

I coach middle school basketball and cannot begin to thank you enough for these devotions. They are very well done. You have the right mix of current basketball players and history that draws the boys into the discussion from the beginning, and then you make it very relatable to the scriptures. READ MORE

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