He Wins Because of God: Essay on Tebow for The Atlantic

Tim Tebow is America’s most popular athlete.  Pretty incredible for a guy who was (un)hailed as the second coming of Ryan Leaf.

A month ago, I wrote on Tebow and John Calvin for the Gospel Coalition.  Just today, The Atlantic has published an essay I wrote on Tebow.  It’s on how to assess what it means theologically if the Broncos lose to my beloved New England Patriots on Saturday in the NFL playoffs.  Has God withdrawn his blessing?  Is he no longer smiling on Tebow?  Wait–was he ever smiling on Tebow in some sort of direct and miraculous way?

You can read my responses to these interesting questions at The Atlantic, one of the more stimulating repositories of thought out there.  I will warn you, though–it involves wood elves.  I won’t say more than that.

Here’s a brief snatch from the piece:

What does this mean in light of a possible Broncos loss on Saturday? It means that there is no reason to believe that God has failed Tebow, that the light of the divine in Tebow’s life is extinguished. God’s Spirit, directed by God’s will, blows like the wind where it wishes (John 3:8). It may be that Tebow will succeed in spectacular fashion; it may be that he will have the worst game of his life. Either way, the Bible assures us that God loves his chosen, God is orchestrating every detail of their lives, and God will lead them through success or failure to the end of all things. Sometimes God grants believers great victories, and sometimes he asks them to walk through the fire. This is true whether it is experienced on the football field, in the office, or in a country that rewards outspoken Christianity with a sword to the throat.

Read the whole thing if you like.

  • http://www.providencepensacola.org Al

    Well done professor! A football essay that was not about football at all!

    (insert appropriate latin phrase here)

    al sends

  • http://365actsoflove.wordpress.com 365 Acts of Love

    I read it and agree. Thanks for taking the time to write it.

  • http://holidaylonging.wordpress.com Holiday Longing

    Great article!! I read every word (unusual for me) and have now discovered your blog. Yay! And I totally agree with what you wrote. If it were up to me, by the way, I would definitely add suffering to the official “means of grace” list. But, it’s not up to me. Or is it?

  • http://www.worldlypursuit.com Riley

    Good job OS.

  • http://holidaylonging.wordpress.com Holiday Longing

    By the way, Tebow recently influenced my blog content, too: http://holidaylonging.com/2012/01/11/day-11-the-one-and-only-son/

  • owenstrachan

    Thanks, all. Very kind words.

  • sinkingsand

    Well said! Great article… what is sad is some of the comments from the people that don’t understand… sigh.

  • razmic

    In the last 30 years, so-called Christians have been so despirately unsure of their own god, that they have replaced the glory of Orthodoxy with a series of lies ranging from the inseparable linkage of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit with wealthy investment bankers making mooing and oinking sounds in a posh West London church to apparently the completion of football passes. The Nicene Creed states that we believe in God the creator of all that is seen and unseen. The Son our Lord who for us and our salvation came down from heaven and was made man. And the Holy Spirit the Lord the Giver of Life. Notably, the church fathers left quacking and football out of it. We would do well to do the same.

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  • http://gravatar.com/chuckwhite chuck white

    Amen! What fine biblical theology explained so clearly.

  • Lynn Rutledge

    Excellent essay! Congratulations on being published in The Atlantic.

  • Kyle

    Really? Maybe Tebow just isn’t all that talented.