Even in this fallen world, sports can bring out some very good things, including teamwork and the development of physical skills in our bodies that God has made. Can people abuse sports? Can they make it all about themselves? Can they become prideful and arrogant? Of course. We’ve all seen athletes who are prideful and arrogant, and it’s terrible. But I also know athletes who are humble and truly Christ-centered.
As far as watching sports, do some people turn it into a god? Absolutely. Some people turn art and movies into a god. Others turn food or cars into a god. But it doesn’t make any of these things inherently wrong.
I anticipate that on the New Earth we will engage in sports. God has put playfulness and desire to compete in us. Competition doesn’t have to be a bad thing—it can be a good thing if you have a right perspective.
But what about the fact that sports can bring out the worst in some of us? Well, when we’re resurrected and on the New Earth, there will be no worst in us to bring out. It will all be fun. I will rejoice in someone else beating me if there’s competition. I’ll try my best, and when I win I’ll be happy. When I lose I’ll still be happy, because I’ll rejoice that my friend won. We have that to look forward to, and I think it’s something we shouldn’t minimize.