Sport And Religion Essay

Sport And Religion Essay-43
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God says, “You may surely eat of every tree of the garden, but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat” (Gen –17).

Unfortunately, many have focused so much on the prohibition of the one fruit that they have overlooked the invitation to feast upon all the other fruits.

The industrial revolution, however, laid the railroad tracks for the professionalization of sports, with the train pulling into the station in the latter half of the twentieth century.

With the professionalization and popularization of sports today, Christians have jumped on board, to say the least, seeing sports as a potential classroom for morality and a platform for evangelism.8 How, then, ought followers of Jesus think of sports today? The way one answers these questions is largely dependent upon their understanding of the broader narrative within which we live.It was made with potential that needed to be developed.Adam’s task as a gardener was a prototype for all culture-making: take the raw materials of the earth and cultivate them for the good of society.To learn more or modify/prevent the use of cookies, see our Cookie Policy and Privacy Policy.Abstract: Sports have captured the minds and hearts of people across the globe but have largely evaded the attention of Christian theologians. There seem to be two polar responses: some dismiss sports as merely a game, while others worship sports as nearly a god.This is often called the cultural mandate, because the command to work and keep the garden is essentially a command to create culture.As John Stott says, “Nature is what God gives; culture is what we do with it.”9 What, then, were Adam and Eve supposed to do with it? God did not create the earth as a finished product but rather as an unfinished project.The God who abounds in love and kindness created a world of delights and placed his beloved image bearers in it with an invitation to enjoyment.Creation is not merely a resource to be used for productivity, it is a gift to be received and enjoyed.Building upon Johan Huizinga’s classic definition of play, Erik Thoennes says, “Play is a fun, imaginative, non-compulsory, non-utilitarian activity filled with creative spontaneity and humor, which gives perspective, diversion, and rest from necessary work of daily life.”10 At the core of the definition of play is that it is autotelic; it is for its own purposes.Play need not be justified by its effects, be it psychological (peace of mind), physical (better health), social (learning teamwork), etc.; it is simply creatively delighting in and enjoying God’s good creation for its own sake.11 In short, we are created to play.


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