The Divine Referee and the Ultimate Goal

July 6, 2014



Growing up in Indiana back in the 50’s and ‘60’s, it was almost assumed that boys learned to play basketball.  So my Dad taught my brother and me how to play basketball–not only how to shoot the basketball but how to play defense as well.  I was told that when defending against your opponent, you could only touch the ball, never the other person.  If you touched the other person, it was a foul.  So when my brother would try to steal the ball from me and caught the tip of my finger, I would call a foul.  I’ve often thought about that foul rule when in later years I watched an occasional hard-fought basketball game on TV.  By the standard I was taught, every player would foul out in the first 2 minutes of the game.

Referees don’t call a foul every time an opposing player touches another player.  There came to be the concept of “No harm; no foul.”  Sometimes it’s hard to judge when there has been harm.  But referees study increasingly complex rules which are different at every level from grade school to the pros.  And even then, they have different styles which can vary from game to game.
TV commentators note whether the referees are not only calling the game fairly, but whether they are calling it closely (with many fouls) or “letting them play.”

Bible References

  • Ephesians 1:3 - 3
  • Ephesians 1:8 - 10
  • Ephesians 1:17 - 23