What’s in a Thorn?

If you have ever touched a thorn, we may have a mutual opinion about it. Thorns aren’t something you spend a lot of time looking at simply because they aren’t alluring. They look like little horns, and their sole purpose is to cause pain. But they are on the stems of one of our most beloved plants, the rose.

Why would that be? My answer to that question is simple, but with a few layers.

The simple: God is a poet. I have been asked by some of my skeptical friends why poetry would show up in something as important as the Bible. Because, God wants us to know that life isn’t just rules and laws, but that life is overlaid with beauty! What good would life be if there wasn’t anything in this world worth enjoying?

I like to look at the rose as a metaphor of our salvation.

Let’s look at the stem as the road of life. The end of the road is a beautiful, fragrant bloom of timeless beauty. There is a slight truth to the saying, “Take time to stop and smell the roses.”

It is a flower for all to enjoy.

The road is paved with traps that can hurt you, which is the thorns. To get to the wonderful endowment at the end, you have to bear through the long stem, and stay clear of the thorns.

In this sense, you can look at the thorns as a metaphor for sins. If we aren’t careful, our sins can cause us to slip and hurt us. The reward at the end is worth the struggle though.

There are other reasons for the thorns to be a metaphor for sin. So let’s take a deeper look.

In Genesis 3:18, God curses the earth. Adam, the man He gave dominion over it (Genesis 1:26), faltered and caused sin to enter the world. Thorns were created as a punishment for the first sin.

So now you see that there is a biblical reason to look at thorns as a metaphor for sin. They are a direct result of it.

Here is the kicker though. When we take a look at Matthew 27:29, we see the Roman soldiers twist together a crown of thorns that they put on Christ’s head to mock Him as the “King of Jews.”

Jesus wore a crown of our sins upon His head as He was tortured and killed. See God’s poetry? The thorns on His head shed His life-giving blood so we could be saved. He literally bore the weight of our sins upon His head. God gave glory through something that is a metaphor for our faults against His Son.

The next time that I look at a rose, I will think of His sacrifice, and thank Him for it. The King of Kings, crowned in Heaven with a crown of glory, was first humbly crowned with our sins. Thank you, Jesus.

Shawn Bain

Shawn is the Vice President of Geeks Under Grace and director of marketing. He has played video games since he was 2 years old and has immersed himself deep within the geek culture. Writing short stories and releasing them for free to the public began his writing journey, and now he uses what he has learned along the way to help Christians benefit from geek culture. Out of his desire to serve Christ, he also founded DUDEronomy and continues to write short stories that entertain and give perspective into the life of a Christian. Shawn's hope is that his life would exemplify a follower of Christ and lead people to accept salvation through His grace. He wants to be a good father, husband, son, and friend to those around him.

1 Comment

  1. silasgreen on July 20, 2014 at 12:14 pm

    Beautifully put.

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