Watch the Olympics With Spiritual Eyes
The real Olympians
Will you be watching the 2021 Tokyo Summer Olympics, the largest international sporting event in the world? They begin today and close on Sunday, August 8, 2021.
The Summer Olympics were originally scheduled to take place in 2020. but it was postponed due to the pandemic.
These games have been going on for a very long time. The ancient games go back to the eighth century B.C. in Olympia, Greece. But the ancient games ended in 393 A. D., and there were no more games until the Modern Olympics began in 1896 in Athens, Greece.
When the New Testament of the Bible was written, the Ancient Olympic Games were going on simultaneously. The Greek culture and language were dominant, and they were deeply involved in athletics.
Therefore athletic allegories referring to these Olympic games are found throughout the New Testament.
Allegories are used to get a message across in comparison to something else.
When you want to draw a picture with words or to explain something better.
It’s like using something that everyone knows or understands to help get more insight into what they don’t know or understand.
Therefore the athletic competitions by the Greek Olympians provided the perfect allegories for the endurance, longevity, and persistence needed to finish the Christian race of faith.
For example, in the New Testament book of Hebrews chapter 12 verse 1, it says:
“Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us.” (Heb.12:1,KJV).
This verse is referring to how the athletes in the ancient games looked when they were performing. If they came to the games carrying packages or layers of clothing, you would not know it.
Because they put all of that away to run the race, they did not want anything that would weigh them down. Carrying heavy packages, wearing clothes that were too bulky, and trying to run simultaneously would only cause them to get tired faster and not finish the race.
Comparing the runners to the Christian life, this verse shows us that we have to do the same thing spiritually. We must lay down the heavy burdens and sin that is surrounding us. And put away anything that hinders our faith and wears us down.
So that we can live the Christian life with consistency and steadfastness, we have to be careful that we don’t allow people, circumstances, and problems to wear us out before we finish the Christian race.
So when you are watching the Olympic games, look at it with spiritual eyes so that you can receive spiritual insights as spiritual athletes.
There are so many comparisons in the Bible to the Olympic games and the Christian life that Christians must be the Real Olympians.