POTD Tim Tebow, QB - Answered Prayers, 2


=== Premise II ===

As a Christian myself, I don't believe that Christians are scripted to triumph over unbelievers in money, sports, fame, etc. as a result of God blessing them to do so.  At least not typically; answered prayer is a complex topic.

Do Christians triumph over Donald Trump in business?  Were the last forty Super Bowls won by athletes who were God's favorites?  In what arena of American competition do Christians dominate in the year 2012?

Premise II:  Tebow is not being granted football victories because he's God's favorite.  If God has favorites, I suspect that their triumphs are of a different nature.


=== Premise III ===

Let's say that premises I and II are true.  That a Mind created the universe and that this Mind is, day-by-day, subtly calling attention to Itself.  And let's say that Tim Tebow is not winning football games because he's the Mind's favorite person.

Is there a premise that follows?  Might this Mind, at a particular place and time, deem it beneficial to use an athlete (or a businessman, or an actor, or a politician) to call attention to itself -- through making the athlete prominent?

Jesus' view of the situation was that every bird that dies, does so as an orchestrated part of the Mind's grand plan to benefit humanity.  Jesus, and Moses, and Mohammed, would have considered it axiomatic that a Tim Tebow career could be used to call our attention to the spiritual.


=== Conclusion ===

I (Jeff) consider it quite possible, even likely, that there has been no intervention in Tebow's career, much less in his passing for 3:16 yards at 31.6 yards per attempt last Sunday.

But given Einstein's belief in a Mind that wishes to "reveal itself," and the ferocious culture war in America right now, it seems feasible to believe that a Mind could raise up a counter-balance to the propaganda being run against home schoolers on a 24/7 basis.

I don't doubt that if the home-school crowd is receiving true injustice -- and that crowd certainly believes that it is -- that Tim Tebow could be one sympathetic pat on the shoulder for that crowd.  

There is a critical difference between this, and saying "Tim Tebow gets to win because he prays."  I would be very skeptical that this is true, and most Tim Tebows in the world explicitly say that.  The average Christian athlete will tell you, "I don't think the Lord cares about our batting averages."  They're praying for strength, for the ability to "glorify God" and so forth.

To pray for a $20M contract is, as most of us sense, greed rather than spirituality.  "You ask, and receive not, because you ask amiss, that you may consume it in your lusts." -- James 4.  Worthy prayer, as far as I understand it, is prayer consistent with the Prime Directive -- love for all beings.

Supposing that Tebow is praying to be part of God's will, and supposing that this prayer is being granted -- I don't at all assume this to be the case, personally -- how nice for him that, in this case, God's glorification coincides with Tebow's personal success.  Maybe it does.  In my experience, personal success tends to be granted in order to counter-balance personal suffering that preceded it.  You pay the price to dance with the belle of the ball.


IMHO, either Tebow's success is Just One of Those Things, or if his success is designed, it's there to make us think.

Settle your own belief as to which is the case.  There certainly isn't going to be an announcement in the clouds as to who is right and who is wrong.





I didn't put much stock into the facts that Tebow threw for 316 yards in his coming-out game, or even that he threw for 31.6 yards per completion.  That simply meant he'd thrown ten completions.
But here we find out that the peak Nielsen rating for the game was exactly 31.6 also.  
It is at this point that The 316 Game goes into a Synchronicity book.  
Proof of God's intervention, no.  A striking example of synchronicity, one that will make the average person stop and think, absolutely.


43% of Americans believe that God helps Tebow win, 42% believe that He does not, and 5% are undecided / have no opinion.
The numbers are about the same for the age 18-29 and age 45-64 demographics:  Americans are almost exactly 50-50 on it.
Interestingly, the split is almost even between Democrats and Republicans, also.
There is a considerable split on this, though:  81% (!!) of Hispanics believe that God is intervening, 60% of blacks think so, and 38% of whites think so.


from the real issue. I suppose someone could call it a playful signpost or fingerprint that God has providentially employed to affirm He is behind Tim Tebow's success in a unique or special way. I wouldn't go to the trouble to argue with them if they were really jazzed about it.
But the chapter divisions and versification of the Bible are a relatively modern construction and certainly not part of the original writings. They certainly are technically not inspired. When you learn New Testament Greek and start working with textual matters and get educated about early uncial (all caps) and miniscule (non-caps) manuscripts and so forth, you learn real quickly from looking at them that they do not contain the diacritical markings contained in the modern critical editions of the New Testament. These, along with chapter divisions and versification, are designed to help the modern student benefit from the results of scholarship so that he may more readily and easily approach the text.
I suppose you could say that by calling attention to 316 God in His providence worked within the existing protocols of the Bible as English-speaker in the USA watching the playoff game now have it.
But the whole 316 thing distracts even from what Tebow is wanting to accomplish. The point is not that God is all about mysterious codes and life is about deciphering them, as some modern novelists and a few crackpot theologians throughout history have asserted. The Christian faith is too profound to be trivialized by focusing on such things. In fact, it can become an excuse to dismiss the whole thing as the playground of a bunch of loonies.
I personally think that elaborate code schemes say a whole lot more about the person who sees them than they do about God.
As a caveat and counter to my point, I must admit that there is one extended example in the Bible of divine communication through codes and schemes, and that is the book of Revelation, which has become a field day for people who mishandle it with extravagant claims. Replete with symbolisms strange to the modern mind, it is presented in a complex structure and heavily dependent on allusions to the Old Testament and phenomena local to its provenance in Asia Minor. (As an aside, I highly recommend the commentary by G.K. Beale for those few who can sled through the Greek language references, or even if you can't but have a lot of patience.)
And I also admit that a study of the physical universe is often the deciphering of complexities and systems that amount to a sort of code. This would be the sort of thing that Einstein was referring to.
But 316 and Tim Tebow's stats from a playoff game? Count me skeptical but willing to indulge people who think it important.
Oh, and all these polls will switch dramatically if Tebow and the Broncos get crushed Saturday evening. Whether he wins or loses, it will have absolutely nothing to do with validating or invalidating of the Christian faith or Tebow's testimony to it. In my opinion.

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