“That’s God setting it up, to make it so dramatic, so rewarding, so special. I’ve been through a lot in life, and had some ups and downs. It’s what’s led me to this day.” Said in post-game comments to Peter King
In response to an email from a listener to his radio show: (email is at the bottom of this post)
“I agree with her. I don’t think God cares a whole lot about the outcome. He cares about the people involved, but I don’t think he’s a big football fan.”
CLARIFYING THE ISSUE
You might be wondering at this point, what does this have to do with BiblicallyPure.com. Well the media seems to passive aggressively be pitting the two ideas and opinions against each other (or at least presenting the comments for them to draw their own conclusions) I think what both men said are an important Christian worldviews. In particular, one worldview drives a segment of this blog site and I thought it would be good to share why that’s important.
These two high profile quarterbacks were in two different settings saying two different things about their belief about God and His working. Don’t get drawn into the debate that Rodgers is responding to Wilson’s comment. That is poor conclusion and poor journalism if they imply that. Like good bible study it’s all about context, context, context!
Here are my thought’s and Scripture for you to think about.
Wilson’s acknowledgement that God is good all the time, points theologically to the character of God yet he used it in the context of his graciousness in bringing a blessing at that moment. Christians are to give “thanks always and for everything” (Eph. 5:20). Why? Because Christians recognize that “every good gift and every perfect gift is from above coming down from the Father of lights” (James 1:17). But the challenge of praise, gratitude and worship is found in Job’s question to his wife: “Shall we receive good from God and shall we not receive evil?” (Job 2:10)
Earlier Job declared “The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.” (Job 1:21) What is best we remember is that God’s word says we give thanks for everything- good or bad. We rarely, hear in a loss of a game “I praise God for this loss.” Yet that doesn’t mean a Christian couldn’t say that or say that ”God is good.” Sure it will confuse the world at large if the platform for that statement is short or cut of before you can explain it. But it’s still good for all Christians to praise God for who He is in His Character and not just when he does something. The important question is: “Does what they say draw honor to God? Does it make God out to be more important than what they are thanking God for?”
The other challenging question for Christians is that we can worship God in the big and small blessings he brings our way (and many of us need to cultivate a deeper acknowledgement of can that) but do we worship Him for Who He is in His character? If nothing else, that is truly the starting point of our worship. So will that increase our thanks giving? Can that be added to the list of 10,000 reason why our hearts should sing “Bless the Lord O my Soul”? Absolutely! His Character, Who He is and What He does!
As for the rest of Wilson’s comments, you can make a case for the sovereign hand of God here. But I’m more concerned with Wilson’s conclusion and where his joy is found in this moment. Does he sense the Father’s good pleasure is winning this game? It appears that he does. Should it have been shared with the world that takes it all wrong? Probably not. Why not? Because it feeds right into what the world has asked for a long time…”Does God care about the outcome of the game (any of them)?” Which for the Christian athlete is not the point of them glorifying Jesus. Or.. at least it shouldn’t be. Realize that Wilson never said that God cares about the outcome (at least to the date of this post). But I wonder if such a tender moment of thinking about things that made it “special” and “rewarding” should’ve remained between Wilson and the Lord, until a later time. Just a thought.
Rodgers’ agreement with the fan’s statement (NOTE: Just one statement in the letter, mind you… remember the context.) points to the heart of what God cares about most. It’s not football or even the results. It’s the people. In both wins and losses, in both healthy and injury, in successful careers and failed attempts, the journey of people and God’s interaction with them, has nothing to do with how we measure life and living.
Jesus uses all of these circumstances to bring people to the Father and call them to repent and be saved. (John 6:44) God is most interested in that, because saving sinner glorifies God more than football. It points to the cross of Christ and the wrath he endured to save His people from the consequences of sin . It honors God character as a just and merciful God. (Ephesians 2:1-10)
Jesus also uses all of these circumstances to build in His people a character that reflects Christ as they grow up and become more dependent on Him. What shines God’s character is when you “let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.
That is the point of the Christian athlete in glorifying God.
In fact that is point of the Christian business man, the Christian factory worker, the Christian politician and the Christian janitor.