Saturday, November 8, 2008

Tim Tebow and facial evangelism

[Photo by Rob Witzxel, staff photographer at the Star Banner]


The following is derived from a story at Ocala.com.

Tim Tebow, for those of you who are not Gator fans, is the esteemed quarterback for the University of Florida's football team. A Heisman Trophy winner, Tebow is obviously a skilled pigskin artist.

He's also something of a flake. Silly as it sounds, Tebow paints a link to one of his favorite bible verses on his cheeks - Philippians 4:13, which reads "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

Now, Mr. Tebow can paint any damn thing he so desires on his cheeks. It's interesting, though, that he feels the need to wear his faith on his face. Lots of people wear their faith on their sleeves and that's annoying enough. Is Tebow trying to convert his opponents? Maybe he's attempting to intimidate his opponents by implying that he's got Christ backing him up? Does Mr. Tebow really believe his Christ gives him super strength in order to win a football game?

Many of the christianists on the right believe that their Christ takes a special and personal interest in the minutia of their lives. But what kind of theology holds that Christ gives a rip who wins a college football game?

Tebow is convinced that Christ does care. Indeed, for him, Christ is the "true source of strength."


So what would it mean to Tebow if everyone on an opposing team showed up with a link to the same bible verse on their cheeks? That would sure as hell confuse the issue!

Even more fascinating is that Tebow doesn't link to anything Jesus said, but to one little verse from Paul's letter to the Philippians?

Why not link to Matthew 19:21 where Jesus tells the rich young man (football player?), "If you wish to go the whole way, go, sell your possessions, and give to the poor, and then you will have riches in heaven; and come, follow me"?

Nah...too many endorsements await!

Update (12/7/08): Click here.

86 comments:

Anonymous said...

I'm thankful that Tebow shows his faith. I'm sure God looks down and see Tebow's faith and that he is not ashamed of his God and i'm sure God will help Tebow in everything he does. Even win a football game! There is more ways to give than giving cash. Tebows gives the greatest gift of all. He give everyone a chance to learn about God through him.

Jacob said...

Anon: Let's see now...your god lives up in the sky. He isn't sure of Tebow's faith but "looks down" and sees a bible verse written on his face and the god knows Tebow is not ashamed of his god.

Oh, were it that easy. I think somewhere it is written that by our "works" you will be known!

And this skygod of yours rewards people who wear bible verses on their face...yup, this great skygod of yours really cares that Tebow and the Gators win a football game.

So, even though Tebow is already a very rich young man (you know what Jesus says about rich young men, right?, god keeps rewarding him by winning football games for him because he has some words scribbled on his face.

And by that facial mess, Tebow "gives everyone a chance to learn about God through him."

Wow, you have a really messed up theology. You do know, of course, there is no such thing as up! And where would you get the notion that the heavenly realm is up?

It seems to me you know very little of the bible or christianity.

But thanks for writing. By the way, what happens when Tebow and the Gators lose? Is god pissed off?

Jacob

Anonymous said...

I'm a bit confused about all your claims that tebow is a rich man-- you are aware that college football players are amateur athletes who are not paid and cant receive endorsements, right? or are you trying to say that your god hates talented people too?

Jacob said...

Anon: I'm a bit confused by your commment. Since when did I say God hated anybody?

Certainly Tebow is talented - very much so, and I think my post was clear about that.

And I don't give a damn what he wears on his face, but it raises a theological issue which you must find difficult to understand.

Are you kidding about the 'rich' stuff. This kid's got it made. And that's fine. Amateurs in name only, friend. Since I was in college many years ago at Ariz. State, football players have been paid goodly sums - often under the table or by other means. In my day, they got free apartments, cars, clothes and cash.

I know nothing about Tebow's finances. NOthing. But, if he's not rich now, he will be shortly. Or to put it another way, it's not a matter of if but when.

And why the hell don't you write something to the point?

Jacob

matt said...

Buddy, i love you and i'll be praying for u. U can hate the Lord Jesus all u want but he will always love you

Jacob said...

Dear Matt,

Please. First of all, I'm not your "buddy." Secondly, you don't "love" me, you don't even know me. Please don't cheapen the concept of love!

Why do you assume I hate "the Lord Jesus"? Just because I disagree with stupid facial evangelism?

What is your point? I fail to see that you spoke to any of the issues I raised.

And who the hell do you think you are that god will hear your prayers for me before he hears my prayers for me? That's a really sick condescending and arrogant attitude.

I'm talking about your attitude, not you. And that doesn't mean I hate you. I don't even know you.

Jacob

Anonymous said...

I just wanted to say that I can see what Tebow is trying to accomplish. I am not what you would call a Bible Beater but I looked up the verse on his face. I don't think that the intent was to say that God was behind him or the Gators in particular. I believe that it is meant to say that he simply gets his strength to live life, day to day, from God. This is a view that countless Christians hold. There is no question in my mind that Tebow is a Christian first and football player second. If he needed to "...give up all of his possessions..." I am sure that he would if he thought that it would gain one soul for Jesus but he is very enlightened in the fact that he can reach a VERY large audience on national television every Saturday. That being said, if one person looks up his bible quote like I did then he has accomplished what he wanted. In turn, if he wants to go and get Millions in the NFL, I am pretty certain that he would use every cent of that trying to win souls for Christ!

Jacob said...

Okay, Anon...

You're certainly entitled to your opinion and I appreciate you actually addressed the content of my post.

You may be right. I don't know Tim Tebow. Do you?

But I'm fairly skeptical. In other words, with reference to giving it all up for "Christ," I'd believe it if I saw it.

Jacob

tim said...

Okay, Jacob. I won't pray for you, but I will hold on to the hope that someday you will have an awakening. I don't know Tebow, but I have read a lot about him. He does mission work during his time off, works harder at football than anybody else, is well liked by his teammates and coaches, and gets good grades. I think he is a true believer and is not ashamed to talk about it. Oh yeah, he just might be the best QB ever at Florida, and they have really had some good ones. I fully understand why you would be so jealous and hateful toward him.

Jacob said...

Ah, dear Timmy -

You just don't get it! And, I didn't even know you had thought about praying for me.

Shucks!

Well, I guess you should know: I think Tim Tebow is a nice guy. Big fricking deal. Lots of nice guys. Being a "believer," or fundamentalist christianist cuts no ice with me whatsoever.

Nor does being the best quarterback in the world or at least the best ever at Gatordom.

And I think your holy book would agree: football is a damn game, nothing more.

And why on god's green earth would you think I'm jealous and/or hateful of Mr. Tebow.

Not. I just think wearing your religion on your face is stupid and that kind of "evangelism" is stupid. That doesn't mean Tebow's stupid or that I hate him.

Sheesh!

Get a life.

Oh, while he is probably very smart, that type of religion is stupid!

Are we having fun yet?

Jacob

Anonymous said...

You talking trash about all of the things people have to say about this are trying to stand up for Tebow and their faith is not going to change any of their outlooks. Your the one that needs to get a life, Tebow and anyone else on this earth can wear their religion on their faces if they want and that just shows they don't care what you think or anyone else for that matter.

I love the fact that Tebow wears that verse on his face, he is a great role model.

Jacob said...

Dear Anon...

Thanks for writing. And I'm glad that you love the fact that Tebow disfigures his face with a Bible verse.

You are entitled to your opinion. But I don't think you should get so hostile and hateful just because I express my opinion.

I think it's stupid to wear a Bible verse on your face. Is that talking trash? I think tattoos are stupid, too.

What would you say if one of the Gators scribbled a verse from the Koran or the Vedas on his face? Would you think that was great, too? Would you "love" the fact they did that? Do you think that Muslims or believers in other religions should "evangelize" with facial scribbling, too?

Maybe Tebow should scribble on his face this verse: Deuteronomy 14:1?

Tebow is a "role model" - how?

And you really need to learn how to write using the English language.

Jacob

Anonymous said...

The verse isn't permanent. He wears them once a week on game days, and people hardly even see them so it shouldn't really even matter.

Bob Poris said...

This is for anonymous who thinks Tebow is a great role model.

Tebow can do whatever he wants, as long as he does not interfere with others. Why do you keep telling others to get a life? Is there something wrong with them having a different viewpoint? How does it affect you, Jesus, God, or anyone else as long as they do not force their views on you? Your attitude is similar to that of the Taliban that we condemn. Do your thing and allow others to do theirs. You keep talking of hate. What happened to love your neighbor, the sinner, or your enemy?

Have you so little faith in God that you must insist that others believe as you do?

Anonymous said...

Jacob-
It is nothing more than a differrence of opinion, you have chosen a little bit of a negative viewpoint in interpreting the verse in which tebow has decided to wear. You assume that,Tim Tebow assumes, that because he wears this verse, that god will give him strength to win a football game. I think tebows viewpoint is much broader and just simply implies that through God Tebow is given strength in general. Not, as you imply Strength to win a football game. The kid is proud of his faith and finds strength in it..Simple. More power to him. Why nitpick on peoples beliefs unless you are searching for your own? I think the real story that we are talking about here is that you are trying to search for your own beliefs. Have a good day. Respectfully,
Jim

Jacob said...

Dear Jim,

You don't have a fricking clue!

But thanks for writing!

Jacob

Anonymous said...

You are a true idiot. You must be a lonely loser. What do you stand for? Enjoy your purposeless life.

Jacob said...

Uh oh! Anon's gonna have to pray to his Jesus for forgiveness tonight! Or did you forget those teachings about not judging others and turning the other cheek, and loving your enemies, and forgiving seventy times seven.

Of course you did. Christianists like to wrap themselves in piety they don't practice.

May god forgive you. And I'll keep praying for you!

Jacob

Bob Poris said...

What is wrong with this guy? Insults, hate….is he really a Christian in any real sense of the word or just another neo Nazi type. So far he has done little besides state his belief and insist that it is somehow more Christian than others, based on his prejudices. If he is indicative of the Christianity he thinks represent the teachings of Jesus, I guess a lot of good people will have to pass. He is a bigot and not too bright.

Anonymous said...

I think you should stop judging Tim Tebow, and start living the Christ centered life that he lives. While you are busy criticizing his motives, he is busy preaching in prisons or on mission trips to the Phillipines. Tim Tebow is a light in the dark world of sports, and he really has his head on straight.

Jacob said...

Jeez, I just said I thought the bible verse on his cheek was kinda dumb and signified a goofy theology...

But what, pray tell does preaching in missions and mission trips to the Philippines have to do with anything other than Tim wants to convert people to his version of Xtianity?

That has nothing to do with having one's head on straight or being a light in a dark world. That's just another form of darkness.

Peace!

Jacob

Anonymous said...

just keep it off the field, with todays HD cameras, you can see the writing on his face, so its not for him, he does it so everyone else will see it, why else would he do it, and i think its wrong in a sporting event to do this.

tim said...

Go Gators!!!

GRAP said...

So I have read all the comments on here and I am quite entertained. I am actually a youth pastor, and while i can't exactly agree with all that has been said. I have enjoyed reading. As far as the Anon Christian goes, if you are reading this. Please don't claim to be a Christian and then go insult someone. Calling a man an idiot, or saying he must be a lonely loser, not only does the opposite of what Christ would want. But also just makes you look foolish. Now in regards to Tebow's "facial evangelism" (I like how you named that.) I agree with the statement about it being a personal thing for him. I use that verse as well when I need a reminder or when I face something I may find too difficult. But he also is obviously using that to show the tv viewers as well. I have no problem with him sharing his faith that way. Just like I would have no problem if a muslim or buddhist or someone along those lines did the same thing. However, even if I did have a problem with it. Who am I to judge that person? I believe that i cannot judge someone's faith either. I don't know what Tim Tebow's relationship with Christ is. Its awesome that he does charity work and things like that. But there are a lot of sports stars who help out in many ways who probably aren't Christians. And as you(Jacob) had said in an early post " I think somewhere it is written that by our "works" you will be known!" Its actually the other way around. The bible says it is by faith you have been saved. Not by works so that no man can boast. You can do all the charity you want, but that isn't going to make you a Christian. Its the heart. And I only God knows man's (Tim Tebow's) heart.
With that said I appreciate you bringing up this discussion. I know we aren't exactly on the same page. But I can respect your opinion. I hope that your view of Christians isn't based on that of someone who refuses to put themselves in someone else's shoes. Have a great day.
Anthony

Jacob said...

To GRAP,

Nice comment! Thanks. Just a note: The Bible says lots of things. Fundamentalist Christianity picks up on a select few of those and makes them the basis of their "theology," but ignores many others.

Actually, every Christian group does that. Otherwise they would get so bogged down in contradictions, they'd have to give up completely.

When you quote Paul with regard to the juxtaposition between "faith" and works, your interpretation derives from your theology. Paul, however, knew not Jesus and even says he cares about nothing except "Christ" and him crucified, but his Christ had no tie-in with the "historical" Jesus. Thus, nowhere in his genuine letters does he reference Jesus' teaching or life when he is trying to make a spiritual or religious point. He always refers to the Hebrew Bible - actually the Septuagint. He developed a "Christology" quite apart from what the Gospels tell us.

I've always thought Christians should better be called Paulinists.

I appreciate that you took the time to write.

Jacob

Michi said...

Hi Jacob. Interesting post. I happened upon it while "googling" what Tebow's bible verse was. I can appreciate differing opinions, however after reading your post I've failed to understand why he's a "flake" for doing something as innocent as this.

I'm thrilled to have Tim Tebow represent my school. He's a huge improvement from our last quarterback. When I was at UF pictures surfaced of Rex Grossmen (then quarterback) high on whip-its. Tebow is a class-act and if he wants to do this, I don't see reason to fault him or his choice of scripture. There's just a lot of other things out there to be annoyed with. ;)

Jacob said...

Hey Mitch...

Thanks for writing. I agree that Tebow is probably a nice guy, although I don't know him. He sure is one hell of a quarterback.

But I do think it's "flaky" to write a Bible verse on your face, said verse implying that Jesus helps him win football games.

If you read my blog, you know I write about all kinds of stuff, sometime "tongue-in-cheek," and sometimes I engage in satire, and mockery, and then at times I'm dead serious.

I do love to poke fun at fundamentalist christianists, though.

Jacob

Jacob said...

Oops! Mea culpa, Michi!

Jacob

Anonymous said...

Hey, to all who think that Tebow is dum for putting a bible verse on a face, is ridiculous! Tebow is only using his freedom of speech which all you ridiculous people demand so you can cuss and say vulgar things! So just chill out! Tebow is a great christian man who seems to love Christ and wants people to see that Jesus Christ is the way the truth and the light no man comes unto the Father but through him and if you got a problem with that people God gave you a choice, it called the power button!! Click it lol!! Go Tebow!! And Jesus lives and is my saviour!!

Anonymous said...

Tebow is the man for Reppin Christ and showin he is the only way to heaven. Love ya Tebow keep it up man and showin the world that Christ cares and is there for us.. may others be inspired to look on and accept Christ as a result of Tebows love for Christ and unashamedness!! TEBOW AND THE GATORS!!!!!

Jacob said...

Gee, Anon...

You seem a little hostile. And you could take a few lessons in spelling and grammar.

But I'm happy you're happy with your Jesus. And I'm happy that you're happy with Tebow writing on his face.

Go Jesus!

Jacob

Jacob said...

Anon!

What the hell is "Reppin Christ"? Is that a cute lil
reference to Tim's reputation as a fundamentalist Xtian?

But you're a day late and a dollar short, if'n you knew what I mean. God told me today that she really doesn't give a rat's ass if the Gators win a football game.

She also said she thought Tebow ought to stick to football and leave off the evangelism stuff.

The facial scribbles, she said, kinda turn her off and she figures they do more harm than good 'cause they make Tim look like a flake.

Some days you just can't win, can you?

Peace in the Lord.

Jacob

Bob Poris said...

Why not praise him as a football player? His religious views have nothing to do with his skills as an athlete. If he offends others he should be aware of it. Would you all be as tolerant of a Muslim acting in a similar manner?

Bob Poris said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Kenny Merriken said...

I am a Christian. Phil 4:13 is an encouragement to my faith. Yes, Jesus Christ cares about who wins a football game even as he cares about the lilies of the field, the sparrows, as well as the hairs on the heads of you and me. He cared enough about us to come to us as a baby, then grow to be a man, then die on a cross for our sins and rise from the dead. I would be pleased to see Tim Tebow finish his senior year at the University of Florida and then go to the mission field as an evangelical Christian missionary sharing Phil 4:13 with many people who need to know that Christ can help them do all things through His strength. Amen

Jacob said...

Dear Kenny,

I'm glad you're a Christian and believe that Jesus Christ cares about football games. I'll bet he sits up there in heaven in his Gator colors rooting and tooting every Saturday and Sunday and Monday nights and Thursday nights and every other time a football game is played. Oh, don't forget about all the high school games. My goodness, how does he keep track of them all? Do you think he has favorites? Does he care more for the Gators than Alabama? Maybe he only cares about games where the quarterback scribbles a Bible verse on his face?

Tell me, though, is this Jesus in which you believe, that was born as a baby, and died for our sins on a cross and zoomed "up" from the dead to live in heaven the same "person" as God the Father and God the Holy Ghost? [You do know there is no "up," right?]

If so, and that's what Christian fundamentalists believe, then it was God the Father and the Holy Ghost who were also born as a baby and died on the cross and rose again. Right?

And if Jesus was really God, then he didn't really die on a cross because God by definition cannot die.

And why would God want himself in the form of a man to die on a cross anyway? Does God need blood sacrifice? Do you believe in blood sacrifice? And does it make sense to you that someone else should pay the ultimate price for your sins such as they are? What kind of God would demand such a thing? Why shouldn't you be held accountable for your own failings? And don't tell me that you're such a terrible sinner that God can't forgive you without you being "washed in the blood of Jesus." That's nonsense, for God forgave all kinds of sinners for a some four thousand years before you came along according to the Bible.

And why would Christians re-institute human sacrifice when the Jews had done away with it hundreds of years before? The Jews knew that God did not require nor want blood sacrifice. That was a pagan thing! Do you suppose the early Christians borrowed that notion from Greek mythology?

Of course, you've studied all the biblical accounts of Jesus' trial and crucifixion and know about the incredible contradictions in those accounts and how they simply cannot be resolved.

Do you find this confusing?

I'm sure glad, though, that you're so sure of what you believe that you think Tim Tebow should go off and save the heathen by getting them to believe this story about Jesus, the son, and God the Father and the Holy Ghost who all were baby born and died on a cross and resurrected themselves into heaven where they all sit together on a heavenly throne ready to throw every single person, little babies included, who don't believe this stuff in a fiery pit to suffer indescribable torment for all of eternity.

Sounds loving, doesn't it?

Just one final thing: You mentioned how Jesus cares, not only about football games, but "about the lilies of the field, the sparrows," etc.

And Jesus/God is all powerful, right? Why doesn't he do something, then, about the incredible suffering found all around the world? Why doesn't he do something about the injustice in the world? Hell, why doesn't he do something about my growing bald spot if he cares so much about the hairs on my head?

Most importantly, though, why in God's name didn't he do something when 6 million of his "chosen people" were murdered by the Nazi monsters?

Unless you can respond to that question with an answer that makes sense, all your other theological beliefs are nothing more than intellectual quicksand into which you sink and disappear.

I really do appreciate your writing, Kenny. Hope you have a wonderful holiday season and a Merry Christmas if that's important to you.

Jacob

Kenny said...

Dear Jacob, you ask some very deep and important questions. I am impressed by your knowledge. I do not have time to answer you properly today. Please wait until tomorrow when I have more time. One thing for sure to ponder is your name of Jacob. Remember that God loved Jacob, son of Isaac and God loves you. more on Dec 09, 2008

Jacob said...

Ah Kenny...

I've pondered my name for a long time. And it's frustrating.

Don't you remember? Jacob was a first-class jackass in many ways! A really nasty guy! And then he fought that "angel," and got his name changed to Israel. Etymological?

Actually, it is unlikely that the Jacob of the Hebrew Bible was historical, but that's beside the point. His life makes for an interesting story.

I don't worry about a god loving me. And the fact that he/she loved the legendary Jacob isn't really relevant to anything.

I'll look forward to hearing from you.

Jacob

Bob Poris said...

What if one member of the team insists on a verse from the Koran?

Bob Poris

Anonymous said...

To Jacob:

Sir, it appears you have so much hate for anyone that is not exactly like you. That is very sad. My church does many great things for many people. We are very caring and do not hate anyone. Go Gators and go Tebow.

Jacob said...

To Anon:

Sir, why is it you christianists are so damn paranoid that every time someone criticizes a bit of your idiocy you think they're filled with hate.

I don't hate anyone. I think you're kinda funny, though!

Go Gators? Go Tebow? What would Jesus say?

Jacob

Bob Poris said...

How would we what Jesus would say? He didn’t speak, read or write in English and we have no writings attributed to him. We can only put words in his mouth or accept the mythology created by many people over many years. One must wonder why He never came back to earth. In general we do know the limits of knowledge of Rabbis of His time and can imagine he followed ancient texts. How many of our readers know any ancient texts well enough to have an informed opinion?

Belief is one thing, knowing is another.

Anonymous said...

So... this facial sign is evidence enough to label the guy 'flaky'? By your own admission you do not know him. Neither do I. How did you jump to the conclusion that he may be implying that God is helping him win games? So let's reserve judgement shall we? Somehow I get the impression from all this exchange that you feel very threatened by this little sign. Let's talk about that.

Anonymous said...

People tattoo stuff on their bodies all the time. Isn't that more radical than a little sticker on your face?

Anonymous said...

Bob, next time you see the number 786 on a sticker or such it is a reference to a Koranic verse.

Bob Poris said...

I didn’t know that. Now that I do, where will I look for such a number and why should I?

Kenny said...

Dear Jacob, Tim Tebow has an agenda on January 8, 2009 in Miami at the BCS Championship game. The second priority on his agenda is to defeat the University of Oklahoma. The first priority on his agenda is to honor Christ.
Will there be controversy because Tim Tebow is wearing a Bible verse reference on his eye Black? He is playing for a secular, state university. If he wins, then he will be a trend setter. If he loses, then they will blame it on the Bible verse. Tim Tebow has Christian courage. Bravo

Jacob said...

Dear Kenny,

Tell Tebow if his first priority is to "honor" Christ, he sure is making a mess of it. Wearing a greasy sign on your cheek makes people laugh at your "Christ."

Tell Tebow also, that if he insists on honoring Christ first, to get the hell out of football, give away everything he owns and serve the poor and needy.

Tell Tebow that a greasy sign on your face which might make people mock you is not courage but idiocy. Or insanity. Especially when there is no need for it.

I guess "evangelism" is kinda like technology: just because you can do something doesn't mean you should.

Trend setter? I don't think so. We've had dipshits out there with signs carrying bible verses for years. Most sane people correctly judge them as goofballs.

People keep telling me that Tebow is a really nice guy. I've never questioned that. He may even be intelligent. But even "smart" people can be dumb as a sack of rocks when it comes to religion.

I find some these comments (not yours, necessarily) to be ridiculous. We're talking about football; we're not talking about something of any importance. It's a damn game. That's all it is! It doesn't mean anything. And there isn't a god anywhere worth her salt that would care one whit about any football game anywhere!

Brave? No, Kenny. Barfo!

Jacob

Alex said...

Dear Jacob,

Interesting points you raise. As you have said, none of us really "know" Tebow, so we cannot know what he is thinking. That being said, I don't think we can accurately surmise the intention behind his "facial evangelism" (nice phrase!). However, I think one thing about the facial evangelism is clear. As with any type of advertising, be it a commericial, sign, or facial evangelism, the point is to get people interested in, or at least give a second glance towards, the product being displayed. In Tebow's case, the "product" is Christ...by displaying Bible verses on a national scale with a ride-ranging audience, Tebow is sure to expose many to the Word of Christ, whether or not they in turn take it to heart.

Now, I suppose this is the very thing you are opposing, however, I must admit I believe that what he is doing is great; the Bible says that all Christians must be missionaries for Christ, and by bringing an awareness of the Word to all who watch Tebow's football games, he is helping to accomplish this goal. As one of the earlier posts mentioned, the person looked up the verse on Tebow's face after seeing him wear it, and the author admitted that even if he was the only one to do so Tebow had accomplished his goal.

As someone else pointed out, the verses he wears vary from game to game. Therefore, I believe the verses Tebow does choose to display have more to do with his love first and foremost for the Lord, and not the belief that because he is wearing a Bible verse and has Christ on his side he is somehow physically superior to his opponents (again, since we do not know what Tebow is really thinking this is simply my humble opinion on the matter).

Finally, I eagerly anticipate the outcome of tonight's big game between the Florida and Oklahoma, because both of the QB's are followers of Christ. So, I guess we will see what happens when Tebow does face an opponent with a similar grounding in the Lord!

Best wishes,
Alex

Jacob said...

Dear Alex,

Thanks for a nice erudite and literate comment. From what you have to say, I'd guess you're a fundamentalist Christian who carries the great burden of "winning the world for Christ."

Nothing wrong with that, I suppose, unless you truly believe that people who don't accept Christ as their personal savior will burn forever in hell.

Then, we've got a problem.


It appears the Lord in heaven has a problem, too. Who to choose? Is he watching? Does he care? Such a dilemma!

The other guy isn't out there "evangelizing" on his face, though. Does that mean God/Jesus/Holy Ghost - the three in one - will tip things in favor of Tebow?

How will we ever know?

Maybe there are other factors involved. Maybe the other guy isn't quite as grounded in the Lord as Tebow? Or may he's more grounded?

Whew! This is tough.

Frankly, the only way to do this is to have all religions represented on player's faces. Boy, if the guy with a verse from the Koran won, that would shake up things!

That isn't gonna happen, of course. Most normal people don't wear bible verses on their face. In fact, I can't recall ever seeing such a thing before.

But, here's one more appropriate for a football player:

From Psalm 68:21-23 - "But God shall wound the head of his enemies ... That thy foot may be dipped in the blood of thine enemies, and the tongue of they dogs in the same."

Hope you're having a good evening!

Jacob

Anonymous said...

"Why not link to Matthew 19:21 where Jesus tells the rich young man (football player?), "If you wish to go the whole way, go, sell your possessions, and give to the poor, and then you will have riches in heaven; and come, follow me"?

Nah...too many endorsements await!"

seriously - have a clue before you write. Tim Tebow doesn't have a stellar pro career coming up - he doesn't translate well into the pros. I think that you have a very interesting point, but in the future please know at least a bit about the subject of which you write.

Jacob said...

And you know Tebow's future plans? Who the hell are you, his mother?

You might also look up the meaning of the word, "satire."

Peace!

Jacob

ridosan said...

I just skimmed through this quickly. I do have a question for Jacob; Are you a Christian?

Rick

Jacob said...

I have a question for you ridosan; are you a Muslim?

Jacob

ridosan said...

I am a Christian.

Jacob said...

Good for you. Doesn't that make you proud? But, it's a meaningless statement because there are so many different kinds of "Christians."

What does it mean to you?

Jacob

ridosan said...

You didn't answer my question.

Jacob said...

That's right.

Jacob

Bob Poris said...

To ridosan:

Good for you.

Bob Poris said...

Many of the SS concentration personnel went to church regularly and considered themselves to be Christians; so does the KKK and many other truly bad people. By their actws, we shall know them.

Labels are frequently misleading.

ridosan said...

Jacob, I was just curious, since you say you are a bible scholar and theologian. Where did you study the bible?

Jacob said...

La Theologie Boutique de la Samarataine

Anonymous said...

I suspect Tim's "facial evangelism" has nothing to do with a belief that God is concerned with the outcome of a football fame. Rather it is his way of giving credit to God for the ability to excel rather than to accept the considerable adulation he receives for himself. If I'm right about this, I'm quite sure Tim would love for every other NCAA athlete to do the same. Imagine a world where high profile athletes eschew praise in favor of expressing gratitude.

Jacob said...

Yup. That's just what we need: All NCAA athletes, supposedly involved in institutions of higher learning, praising their imaginary friend(s) in the sky for whatever athletic skills they possess.

If you really believe this, then you would find it perfectly OK for some athletes to write verses from the Koran on their cheeks, and for others to write verses from pagan religious sources, and others to write sayings of the Buddha, etc.

Right?

Jacob

Anonymous said...

From John (anon. above)to Jacob: They have that freedom and I support it. I wonder if they would get as much negative attention as Tim does for a Christian scripture reference.

Jason C. Helveston said...

There are a few things in your article that are quite misleading (if not inaccurate) and intolerant. You first assume that wearing such a belief on one's face is necessarily ostentatious and evangelistic. Would you say the same of Reggie Bush who wears "619" on his face? Is he undeservedly attracting attention to his hometown and telling everyone they should move there by sporting his San Diego area code? No. He is simply identifying himself and showing pride in his hometown. So too Tebow identifies with his Christian faith and his pride in God by wearing verses...and it is not always Philippians 4:13.

Secondly you assume that Tebow is wearing such a verse to claim that Christ is giving him strength to win. Very easily he could be thinking that his faith gives him freedom to play hard or play his best. Without further elaboration the supposed strength he would be claiming has no specified direction. Therefore if an opponent wore a matching set of eye blacks there would be no issue.

Thirdly that passage in Philippians has nothing to do with activities such as football. In its context the writer is displaying that God provides for his people in difficult times. Thus his point is that, believers are able to face hunger and need through the strong provision of God.

Your final assumption is that Tebow is going to gain a huge NFL contract. Most professional teams are not that interested in Tebow as a premiere player, let alone a starting quarterback. So to suggest that Tebow does not write a generous reference of Jesus because he is going to be rich is just not true.

Finally based on this article and the subsequent comments it seems that a touch of intolerance is ringing in your words. You said that, "Mr. Tebow can paint any damn thing he so desires on his cheeks," but it appears that you believe anything but that. It does not seem at all, through the afore mentioned assumptions, that you are tolerant of Tebow's habit of "facial evangelism".

Bob Poris said...

Good idea! Perhaps we would know which face writing God prefers over those on the loser’s faces. It would be easier in sports that have a single person winning over others. Team endeavors make it more difficult for God to tell us which face writing was the one He decided to favor. In Tebow’s case, is it the team or is it Tebow that God is helping? Would God be kind to Tebow if he went to another school? Perhaps Tebow should join the Army and get posted to Afghanistan. Our boys and girls need a lot of help against the Taliban there. So far, the Taliban seem to think God (Allah) is on their side. How will we know which is correct?

John said...

I hope after that seemingly flippant comment Bob P.is ready to enlist -- John

Jacob said...

Jason,

I checked your blog and assume you are an "evangelical" or "fundamentalist" Christian.

Thus, your comments are unsurprising.

Perhaps you might have caught the satirical nature of my original post; or if not the original, the other updates.

Tebow or any player can wear any damn thing they want on their face, as I said. I really don't care. But if they decide to do something as dumb as that, they need to be prepared to be mocked.

Tebow identifies "his pride in God by wearing verses"? Ah, c'mon, there's got to be a better way. People like yourself might smile and approve and think he's a wonderful role model, but most non-Christians will think he's a flake, as I think many of the comments on this post show.

What does his faith have to do with playing hard? Is that a by-product of Christianity? Do not, other, non-Christians play hard and have just as much motivation. Is Tebow somehow playing hard to impress God or Jesus or both (oops, they're the same, I forgot!)

And it would seem to me that Phil 4:13 says quite clearly that "I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength." My inference, therefore, does not appear to be out of line.

I don't recall ever saying that that passage or any other has anything to do with football; in fact, I said the opposite. Can you really conceive of an almighty, omnipotent, omniscient god giving a rat's ass about a football game? Furthermore, having all those qualities, said god would already know the outcome or have provided for the outcome if said god should care.

And why is it whenever someone throws a bit of satire or mockery at Christian pretensions, they are accused of being "intolerant." Frankly, I find a lot about the Christian religion (and other religions) about which to be intolerant. It's rather intolerant of you to accuse me of being intolerant over such foolishness as scribbling on a face.

Finally, you're the second person to state that the NFL isn't interested in Tebow. I don't know anything about that, but there was certainly a lot of concern from the Gators after the big game as to whether he'd be back next year or head to the big leagues, and a huge sigh of relief when he decided to stick in Gainesville for one more go-around. I'd be mighty surprised if he isn't NFL bound as soon as next season wraps up.

But thanks for writing. You might want to spend a little time in the Gospels, too, just to find out WWJD? (Sorry, that was a little snide)... and intolerant.

Oh, well.

Satircally yours,

Jacob

Jason C. Helveston said...

Thanks for you response.

Jacob said...

John -

Regarding your "flippant" comment about Bob: let me fill you in. Bob is a WWII veteran of our submarine service. He was wounded in the war and has been 1/3 disabled ever since (let's say 1944).

He's a retired business executive and a world traveler.

Listen carefully to what he has to say.

Jacob

John said...

Bob has my ultimate respect and, in my view, the right to make the comment. Thank you for your service, Bob, and for my freedom. John

Anonymous said...

Chill out, so what hes showing his faith, calm the hell down

Bob Poris said...

I did enlist in 1944. I served in the submarine service. I am a 30% disabled veteran and cannot serve. What’s your excuse? Our armed services are short of enlistees and our soldiers are suffering in the front lines in Afghanistan due to undermanned posts. What happened to patriotism and the willingness to serve in times of war?

Bob Poris said...

Thanks Jacob for the backup. As a former “street” kid from the edge of New York’s Hell’s Kitchen, I used to be able to handle myself without back up. Now I can use a little help. I wonder how many of today’s youth could handle what my generation had to. WW2 had a flood of enlistees, as did the Viet Nam “action”. These guys seem to think God/Jesus will handle everything. So they can stay home and make pious statements.

Bob Poris said...

Thank you, John!

I did it all without ever thinking Jesus would take over for me. All this nonsense over Tebow and his face painting as a demonstration of his piety makes me a little ill at ease. This land has its non believers, its variety of believers and those that object to all the abuses of too many preachers, priests, Rabbis, Imams, and hypocrites. Israelis pray to God and ignore Jesus. Hamas prays to Allah and also ignores Jesus. I want the Israelis to win and will accept that they do their thing to fight terrorism without references to God, Jesus etc. They do not paint their faces with biblical verses and many are agnostic or atheistic, if what I read is true. So what?. God should not be reading face paint in these perilous times. People are starving or being murdered in wholesale lots all over the world, regardless of painted faces on a football field.

ridosan said...

Jacob, I notice you have, at times, referred to God as "she". The Bible clearly states that God gave "his" only son. Of course, I gather from all your writings in here that you are not a Christian. I say that because of your references to "your skygod" "your christ" "your jesus". Of course, you won't come right out and say exactly what you are, whether it be Christian, athiest, agnostic, muslim, budhist...any reason for that?

The verse that Tim Tebow wears, Phil 4:13, as stated before says "I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me." He is not in any way saying the Jesus helps him win football games. I believe that the strength referred to in that verse is not a physical strength but in inner spiritual strength.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not judging you. I just disagree with you. But, that's the great thing about this country we live in. We can disagree without fear.

Jason said...

Wow, great posts. I'd like to point out the context of Phil 4:13 is that Paul is writing this toward the end of his life. He's by no means "successful" in wordly terms. He's poor, hungry, in jail, many of his followers had deserted him because of persecution and he's soon facing execution. He's hardly a model for "success" as the world defines it. Plus, God didn't obviously give him a break because he claimed he loved Jesus... When he writes that he can do all things in Christ who strengthens me, he's not claiming "success" because of God rather win, lose or whatever, he's claiming success on how he conducts himself in whatever circumstance he's faced with.

So, I believe that Mr. Tebow is saying whether he wins or loses, he is saying God's strength will allow him to conduct himself with dignity and class regardless of whatever life throws his way. Not that I know Tim Tebow personally, but I don't have a problem with it if this is what he means when putting the verse on his face.

Jacob, I can see where you're coming from and many of your arguments are cogent. Many "Christians" communicate and act in ways that are not Christ-like which leads to hypocriscy and confusion. All, especially myself, fall short of God's standard... This is why we need Christ and His strength for salvation and to conduct ourselves in a manner that represents Christ approriately.

Jacob said...

Good comment, Jason. Thanks for giving your viewpoint.

Chris said...

I am a Christian. Right or wrong in the eyes of other people; it does not matter. There is one absolute truth in who created us, why we are here on this earth, and where we are going when our physical bodies die. There cannot be more than one absolute. Whatever anyone believes along with the source or authority for that belief will dictate what happens to that person in this life and when they die so follow where God leads you because He is the absolute standard and authority. He also does not change unlike the human race. We just bicker over things like what are on this blog and move closer or further from God contantly in our thoughts, word, and deeds while he stays the same. In the center. I have accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior; God that became human and came to earth to live a perfect life and be crucified on the cross for the sins of all who believe in Him. His death saves all who believe in Him from eternal separation from God. This is fact that I believe is in the Bible, which is a very difficult book to read and interpret, but faith and trust in God provides clarity that I could not have on my own. Not everyone will believe in Jesus Christ as their savior or all of the claims in the Bible, that is also stated in the Bible. So be it.

Jacob said...

@ Chris - Amen. Or something. How, Chris, did you decide all that you believe was true? When you were born, you knew none of that...so someone had to put it in your head.

Have you checked out all the other options with an open mind?

Here's something to think about: There is no hell, so enjoy today and stop worrying about "eternity."

I know that's true 'cause I read it in the Bible. Ecclesiastes. And the ancient Hebrews had no concept of afterlife...

That came with the Greeks.

Have a nice day. And don't forget that the Bible you say you "believe," is wrong in innumerable places. And you don't believe it anyway.

Do you keep the Sabbath? (That's the 7th day, Saturday). Have you taken a photograph or made any other graven image lately? Do you believe the earth is flat and the firmament is a hard disc above which there is water? Do you believe Jesus when he said he came bringing a sword and not peace and when he told his disciples the end of the world would come in their lifetime?

Do you believe their are 7 heavens? No? Paul did!

Nah...lots of stuff in the Bible you don't believe. You just pick and choose what you want to believe based upon what other so-called "authorities" have told you.

Relax, have a beer, enjoy! God isn't gonna get you!

bruiseman said...

Not sure how your quote from Matthew applies since he is a college athlete and is not and can not be paid to play or endorse anything. Also the context of that passage is not that you can not have material wealth but that you must not place that wealth above God in your life.

horrible said...

horrible article

John K. said...

It's sad that people like yourself are so spiritually empty that you have to insult those who have faith. I'm sure your instinct is to attack me, too, but I would urge you to pause and reflect upon what others have said. We are not long for this earth.

Doug said...

Jacob
What Tim Tebow is doing is no different than what you are doing on your blog. He is taking advantage of a public platform to share something that he wants the world to read. Now with sharing it puts him in the arena for criticism, as well as it does for you. I have noticed that you have some very strong views against Christianity. I don't know why, but it is there. I thought it was funny when you criticized one of the writers about their use of the English language. I was just wondering if your vocabulary is so short that you have to use words (that our English language deems as curse words), because it makes you look very unintelligent. You did speak of a college education.

Thomas said...

It's not about Tebow at all. He wears them to be a messanger for GOD. He gets to choose which message because he's the one who wears them.
now
What's with all the anger and hate? If you don't get that it is about being a wholesome and moraly "good" person then you should rethink your postings. That's to everyone. snyde comments are pathetic.

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