Tag Archives: tim tebow.

Post on SNL skit of Tim Tebow draws reaction from Mormons and Skeptics

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Recently I posted that I was saddened by the Saturday Night Live reckless skit on Tim Tebow that among other things  endorsed Mormonism. In response, I gave several evidences from archaeology that disproved the Book of Mormon. Then I included a five part video series that showed the archaeological evidence that supported the historical accuracy of  the Bible. (Archaeological evidence evidence against the Book of Mormon is abundant i.e., the lack of horses and iron swords in North America 2000 years ago), but arhaeological evidence supports the accuracy of the Bible.)

Here are the responses that I got and my responses to them: 

Comments

Patrick
obrainghaile@gmail.com
216.0.97.11

Why were you saddened? I doubt Jason Sudeikis’ proclamation of the truth of Mormonism is going to be that one missionary tool the LDS church was missing to really get things going. It was pretty clear to me the joke was meant to be absurd. South Park did the same thing when in one episode the director of Hell tells some newcomers the Mormons are the ones who get into heaven.

What is really confusing is why so many people who are of Evangelical and Baptist faiths (to name a few) spend so much time and energy trying to debunk Mormonism. Why do they care so much? I would think there are many who need help far more than a group of people who appear to believe in Jesus Christ and try to emulate Him by living honest, moral lives. I would rather devote my time and energy making sure I understand and live my own faith.

   

What is God doing with Tim Tebow? Fellowship Bible pastor of Little Rock ponders…

Everyone is wondering if this amazing fourth quarter comeback streak will end for the Denver Broncos and their quarterback Tim Tebow. At the December 11, 2011 early service at Fellowship Bible Church, pastor Mark Henry (who himself was an all conference Arkansas Razorback football player) noted:

How many of you have been watching the drama behind Tim Tebow. Tim Tebow is the starting quarterback for the Denver Broncos. Some of you may remember that he had a great career at the University of Florida. He won the Heisman and was a real high draft choice. Recently he was named the starting quarterback of the Denver Broncos. What has been interesting to watch is the incredible amount of controversy and criticism that has come  against Tim Tebow both as a player and a Christ follower too. It is as if Tim Tebow has a thorn in his flesh and it is called the media.

You know there is website out there and the whole website is set up to mock Tim Tebow for praying before, during and after football games. People all across the world send pictures to this website and they have coined a word for him praying called “Tebowing.” People all around the world send pictures to this website making a mockery of Tim Tebow for praying.

It doesn’t stop there, just recently another NFL quarterback came out and publically  criticized Tim Tebow and said Tebow talks too much about Jesus.

Then Mark Henry, who was an all-conference football player at Arkansas in 1991 and had his own chance to pursue a NFL career, pointed to Tebow’s response in the USA Today article below.

USA Today reported on November 23, 2011:

A day after former Broncos QB Jake Plummer said in a radio interview that he wished the man currently taking the snaps in Denver, Tim Tebow, would curb his references to Jesus Christ and his faith, Tebow responded.

QB Tim Tebow could have the Broncos in first place by the end of Week 12.
By Kirby Lee, US Presswire

Asked about Plummer’s remarks in an interview on ESPN’s First Take, Tebow said:

“If you’re married, and you have a wife, and you really love your wife, is it good enough to only say to your wife ‘I love her’ the day you get married? Or should you tell her every single day when you wake up and every opportunity?

“And that’s how I feel about my relationship with Jesus Christ is that it is the most important thing in my life. So any time I get an opportunity to tell him that I love him or given an opportunity to shout him out on national TV, I’m gonna take that opportunity. And so I look at it as a relationship that I have with him that I want to give him the honor and glory anytime I have the opportunity. And then right after I give him the honor and glory, I always try to give my teammates the honor and glory.

“And that’s how it works because Christ comes first in my life, and then my family, and then my teammates. I respect Jake’s opinion, and I really appreciate his compliment of calling me a winner. But I feel like anytime I get the opportunity to give the Lord some praise, he is due for it.”

Plummer had this to say Monday on XTRA Sports 910 in Phoenix:

“Tebow, regardless of whether I wish he’d just shut up after a game and go hug his teammates, I think he’s a winner and I respect that about him. I think that when he accepts the fact that we know that he loves Jesus Christ, then I think I’ll like him a little better. I don’t hate him because of that, I just would rather not have to hear that every single time he takes a good snap or makes a good handoff.

“Like you know, I understand dude where you’re coming from … but he is a baller.”

Asked by ESPN’s Skip Bayless if God makes him a better football player, Tebow would only grant that his faith gives him peace and comfort on the field.

______________________

Then Mark Henry commented:

What a powerful statement (by Tebow). (Audience claps.) Here is what I would say about that. Here is this “if only” situation in Tim Tebow’s life, this constant critique and criticism from the media and from players and it is constant,  yet in the midst of it all God is doing something in Tim Tebow. Through His words and His actions He is on the move. What God is doing is He is showcasing Himself to a watching world and in the end God will not be mocked and I have to wonder and it is just speculation on my part because Tim Tebow has not even being playing very good, yet he has been winning games. You tell me who may behind that right.

(Listen to whole message at http://www.fellowshiponline.com/resources/sermons/#/!/if-only/ )

At this point I get in my car and my 15 yr son Wilson tells me, “Dad you said that God doesn’t pull for one team over another.” I respond that is right then I go home. I remember that Harry King wrote on Saturday:

Tied for first in their division, the Broncos have games remaining against Chicago, New England, Buffalo, and Kansas City. They might lose their next two. If they do, the experts will gloat with “told you so.”

Therefore, I thought the Broncos great run was probably coming to a close on Sunday but I go home and watch this happen below:

Uploaded by on Dec 11, 2011

The Chicago Bears were about to win the game by running out the clock when veteran running back Marion Barber runs out of bounds stopping the clock, and thus giving Tebow and the broncos a shot to make another great fourth quarter comeback. Tebow performed his Magic again in regulation, which forced the game into overtime! This video shows the Magical overtime drive! There is also a link to the game tying driving inside of the video.

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Related posts:

Tim Tebow’s Faith (Part 2)

  This is a RUSH transcript from “The O’Reilly Factor,” June 3, 2011. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated JUAN WILLIAMS, FOX NEWS GUEST HOST: In the “Back of the Book” segment tonight, Tim Tebow is a quarterback for the Denver Broncos and a man of deep faith. That faith […]

Tim Tebow’s faith (Part 1)

Tim Tebow’s faith (Part 1) I really respect Tim Tebow and I wanted to pass along an article that defends him. Tim Tebow, Faith and Blasphemy Culture, Evangelicals, Featured, Protestant, Religion, Sports — By J.F. Arnold on August 17, 2011 at 5:05 am I won’t pretend to be an expert in the world of sports. I can tell you if a given team […]

Tim Tebow rallies the Broncos and may be a starter soon

I think the world of the character of Tim Tebow. Tim Tebow played well in a reserve role Sunday, but did he play himself into a starting quarterback job? Well, Tebow’s loyal fanbase certainly thinks so after the former Heisman Trophy winner tried to rally the Denver Broncos, even though they ended up losing to […]

Tim Tebow’s Christian faith not abandoned in locker room

I am thrilled to get the chance to share the following article with you today. I got a call from Tim Keown who is a writer for ESPN Magazine a few days ago. He had read a post from my blog on Tim Tebow and wanted to ask me some questions. One of my answers […]

Tim Tebow’s Faith (Part 3)

Tim Tebow’s Faith (Part 3) Another look at the faith of Tim Tebow. Q & A: Tim Tebow on Faith, Fame, & Football The NFL athlete reflects on his outspoken faith, whether athletes should attribute their wins to God, and moving from the Focus on the Family ad to Jockey ads. Interview by Sarah Pulliam […]

Tim Tebow being persecuted for his Christian faith?

It is clear to me that Tim Tebow is trusting in the Lord and he does not want to get discouraged by the world’s negativity. However, I do not think that he believes that if you have faith then you will become rich and everything you do will bring success as the world thinks of […]

 

Tim Tebow’s Christian faith not abandoned in locker room

I am thrilled to get the chance to share the following article with you today. I got a call from Tim Keown who is a writer for ESPN Magazine a few days ago. He had read a post from my blog on Tim Tebow and wanted to ask me some questions. One of my answers made into the article below. After the article I have put up links to other posts I have done on Tim Tebow.

This story appears in the Oct. 31 issue of ESPN The Magazine. 

Tebow 10:23

On Oct. 23, the Broncos become Tim Tebow’s team. A cultural earthquake will follow.

Keown By Tim Keown
ESPN The Magazine
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WHAT SHALL WE say about the kingdom of Timothy Richard Tebow? And what parable should we choose to describe it? 

Consider the day this past summer when Tebow attended the Junior Denver Broncos Cheerleaders brunch. It began with an adult requesting a photograph with the Broncos quarterback. Security stepped in and forbade it, for photographs with Tebow were deemed an opportunity for children only, so the adults were waved off. 

But Tebow calmly said to the men in the yellow windbreakers, “It’s okay. As long as everyone stays cool, I will take photographs.” And so Tebow posed for photos with all who wanted them. And the picture-taking lasted for quite some time. 

Uploaded by on Sep 8, 2009

Tim Tebow pumps up his fellow teammates during halftime of the 2008 BCS Championship game against Oklahoma.

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When all seekers had been satisfied, Tebow picked up a football and began tossing it around with a few of the junior cheerleaders. Soon an adult wanted Tebow to throw the ball to him, and the security men stepped in a second time, shaking their heads and declaring the receiving and throwing of passes off-limits to adults. 

Year of the Quarterback

ESPN has dedicated 2011 to examining one of the most crucial positions in all of sports — the quarterback.
Year of the QB » 

Again Tebow addressed the men, raising his hand and firmly — but without anger — telling them that this too was all right. As long as everyone continued to be cool, he would toss the football to all who wanted to catch it, regardless of age. And so it went that Tebow engaged in much throwing and catching, and it lasted quite some time, with men and women and members of the JDBC alike frolicking across Sports Authority Field at Mile High Stadium as in a scene from Roger Goodell’s vision of eternal life.

And thus when the frolickers had had their fill and the brunch concluded, Jessica Serna, mother to a Junior Denver Broncos Cheerleader, was moved to buy matching Tebow jerseys for herself and her husband. Which is how they came to be wearing said jerseys while making their way into Sports Authority Field at Mile High Stadium for the Broncos’ Week 5 game against the Chargers. 

It’s also why, when it came time for Serna to describe her attraction to Tebow, she thought of that experience and said, “He’s an amazing person. I’m more into what he stands for than what he is as a football player. But he deserves a chance to play.” 


Tim TebowRon Chenoy/US PresswireMany Broncos fans have made their QB preference known. Tebow will start Sunday at Miami. The Broncos’ next home game is Oct. 30 against the Lions.

THE BACKUP QUARTERBACK is the perfect vessel. Followers are not allowed to witness what the coaches see during practices and film sessions, hence they are free to endow their hero with whatever qualities they desire. And so the backup quarterback sprouts up whole and flawless on the sideline every Sunday, brimming with potential glory. He is free of sin. He is the embodiment of hope. He is the quintessential sports messiah. 

Even secular No. 2’s are worshipped. Backups who’d rather spend time in jail than attend a brunch for junior cheerleaders and their families can still be paragons of the sports-talk set. Backups who go out of their way to thank security guards for protecting them from the unwashed can sometimes find their names being chanted when a starter’s passes are underthrown and intercepted.

But when the man in waiting is one of the most famous and revered athletes of our time, the result is nothing short of a cultural earthquake. In his time as the Broncos’ backup, the young man who appeared with his mother in a “Miracle Baby” Super Bowl commercial, who did missionary work assisting infant circumcisions in the Philippines, has become a messiah within a messiah. Tebow was the immortal college quarterback at Florida — a winning, raging, crying, hard-charging, promise-making, speech-giving and Bible-verse-wearing force of nature who forever changed the image of the homeschooled. 

Which is why it came to pass that earlier this fall a Broncos official and an assistant coach found themselves having a discussion about the Tebow phenomenon. They covered the usual topics — the cultlike following, the astounding amount of media attention and the wild backlash to any criticism — before the assistant just shook his head. “I’ve never seen anything like it,” he said. “That’s because there’s never been anything like it,” the official replied.

There is the football angle: Can Tebow’s unique talents translate to NFL success despite his deficiencies? There is the religious angle: Does his outspoken Christianity explain the vitriol of some of his detractors and, on the other side, the holy hell aimed at his coaches for not playing him? And then there is the parochial but most fascinating angle: What in the world will the Broncos do with him? 

Let’s make one thing clear up front: John Fox does not appear to be a tool of Satan. He is a gray-haired, intermittently successful NFL coach in his first year as boss of a bad team with a 42-year sellout streak. But the second he declared Kyle Orton his starting quarterback after this summer’s abbreviated training camp, Fox unwittingly walked into a battleground in the culture war. 

[+] EnlargeBroncos

Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images Kyle Orton (No. 8) completed only 58.7 percent of his passes as a starter this season. Tebow (No. 15) gets his chance Sunday, and Brady Quinn (No. 9) remains a backup.

Like any man whose job depends on his ability to put the best players on the field to win the most games, Fox doesn’t appear to be a big believer in intangibles. It’s great that Tebow has an unquenchable will to win, but when faced with deciding between that and the ability to run the offense, Fox seems willing to take his chances with the latter. 

And everything would have proceeded according to plan had Orton not shown an incredible propensity for systematic regression over the first 4 games of this season. He went from bad to worse to unplayable, even for a conventional, change-averse coach like Fox.

That is when the book of Tebow took a remarkable turn. It happened after the first half of the fifth game, against the Chargers at Mile High, following two final, offensively stagnant quarters under the direction of the heavy-lidded and outwardly dispassionate Orton. The sellout crowd took note, loudly and with much passion. Fox took note as well, and as Tebow ran toward the locker room before the half, an assistant told him, “You’re in.” Twenty minutes later, when he entered the huddle, Tebow looked at his teammates and said, “Believe in me, guys.” Of course he did. 

The people rejoiced, and their faith was rewarded. In the fourth quarter, down 26-10, Tebow led two touchdown drives in 3 minutes and 38 seconds. He ran for one, he threw for the other. He was typically unconventional, underthrowing and scrambling and occasionally having trouble with snaps from center. In the game’s final 24 seconds, Tebow drove the Broncos to the San Diego 29, where his final pass, coming after a 12-second scramble, fell incomplete in the end zone. He was unconventional, yes, but unconventionally effective. It was one of the coolest losses ever. 

“You can look at a lot of guys and say they look unorthodox,” says Broncos tight end Dante Rosario. “Some guys it just doesn’t matter how it looks. They just know how to get it done. That’s him.” 

Typically, coaches and organizations hate quarterback controversies even more than they hate poor quarterbacking. Maybe it’s because such debates engender a certain amount of self-perpetuating dread. In the detritus of the postgame locker room, Broncos executive vice president and legend John Elway strode through the Gatorade bottles and athletic tape, apparently believing the place had cleared out. When he saw a couple of local reporters standing in an otherwise empty room, Elway waved them off and said, “I can’t wait to talk to you guys.” 

If the backup quarterback is the ultimate vessel of hope, then Tebow must become the Broncos’ ultimate nightmare. What happens when the most important decision on your football team is hijacked, taken out of your control by the force of one man’s personality? What happens when the wake left behind Tebow’s cyclonic swirl reduces your list of choices to precisely one?

“You can look at a lot of guys and say they look unorthodox. Some guys it just doesn’t matter how it looks. They just know how to get it done. That’s him.

– Broncos tight end Dante Rosario

 After two touchdowns in just over three minutes and a near-miracle at the end, how could Fox not name Tebow the starter? Could the coach have declared that Tebow needs experience, or that he’s too unorthodox and can’t throw the deep out? Could he have claimed that Orton, 12-21 as the Broncos starter, won the quarterback competition fair and square? Could Fox have said that the people who see persecution at every turn and those who buy jerseys based on kindness shown at JDBC brunches don’t see what he sees in practice and at film sessions? 

No, he couldn’t. Two days after the San Diego game, Fox and Elway made the inevitable official: Tebow would replace Orton as the Broncos quarterback. Still, Fox dismissed the uniqueness of the situation. “There are a lot of outside forces at work in every NFL city,” he said, with all the verve and conviction of a guy making a doctor’s appointment.

But Fox knows this isn’t about a city or a fan base or even about a guy who won a Heisman Trophy and two national championships. This is about a cultural force — a man whose following in the evangelical Christian community has made him the strong, handsome face of a burgeoning brand of “muscular Christianity,” which preaches that there is room inside a man to both provide witness and run over a linebacker for the first down. This is about a guy who garners so much excitement that fans in Green Bay joined visiting Broncos fans in chanting his name in the second half of the Packers’ Week 4 blowout win.

It’s about turning a 26-year-old devout Muslim named Mohammad Suleiman into a devout fan of an evangelical QB. Suleiman’s company, Multiline International Imports, normally uses a billboard near downtown Denver to advertise weekly specials, but after the Broncos’ 17-14 Week 3 loss to the Titans, he felt so strongly about Tebow that he changed it to: “Broncos Fans to John Fox: Play Tebow!” Explains Suleiman, “We didn’t have any specials that week, so we figured why not. We want to see what he’s got. I like Tebow. It takes a lot of guts to put yourself out there like he has.” 

As is always the case when religion and sports mix, there’s wild stuff residing in the margins. There, every criticism of Tebow’s playing style — his release, his inexperience under center, his decision-making — is viewed through the prism of his evangelicalism. Among a certain subset of fundamentalists, the question has been asked: Is Tebow a victim of religious persecution? 

In response to a critique of the quarterback by Boomer Esiason, influential evangelical blogger Howell Scott wrote, “In this life, we face ridicule and scorn for following Christ, whether on the football field, in the boardroom or, yes, even in the church house. For Tim Tebow and for the rest of us, when we are ridiculed and made fun of because of the name of Jesus, might we hear the master say to us yet again: ‘BLESSED, MAKARIOS, WOOHOOH!!!'”

Jamie Schwaberow for ESPN The MagazineNo matter Tebow’s status on the depth chart, his jersey has ranked among the NFL’s top sellers. 

Such measured assessment leads naturally to the words of former Broncos linebacker Bill Romanowski, who went on a national radio show and said, “There’s something about this guy being a Christian and a virgin. Whatever it is, he’s got it.” 

Closer to the center, there are those who see Tebow as an inspirational cultural touchstone, not a character whose arrival was foreshadowed in Revelations. “He had to make a decision when he went into the locker room: Do I live two lives?” says conservative Christian blogger and fan Everette Hatcher. “He decided to take his faith with him into the locker room. He has lived one life, and I strongly respect that.” 

And of course, there is the secular cult of Tebow, filled with fans who watched him at Florida, where he didn’t so much win football games as charge up hills and occupy them. So why, these equally devout believers ask, shouldn’t he get a chance to do the same in the NFL? 

Besides, it was the Broncos themselves, under the housefly tenure of Josh McDaniels, who traded up to draft Tebow in the first round in 2010, thereby making it possible for any and all lofty expectations to be bestowed upon him. As Brandon Hamilton from Cañon City, Colo., said as he leaned on the hood of his car in a parking lot near the stadium, “I like Tebow’s views, but he could not have ‘em and I’d still want to see him play. Orton just curls up in the fetal position; no way Tebow does that. At least he’d give me a reason to drive up here every Sunday and justify spending all this money.” Some of that cash was spent on a Tebow jersey, which Hamilton was wearing as he spoke. 

In the locker room following the near-miracle at Mile High, as Orton and third-teamer Brady Quinn dressed no more than 10 feet away, Tebow held court with the media. He said all the right things, which means he said very little that would either inspire or ignite. Orton and Quinn talked quietly, and one Bronco heading for the showers yelled, “Tebow Nation, baby!” Not one of the three — Orton, Quinn or Tebow — reacted. 

Tebow Nation, indeed. Moments earlier, when his final pass against the Chargers fell incomplete in the end zone and the cheers turned to moans, the collective sag lasted a count of two, maybe three, before something nearly magical happened. A roar rose, 70,000 strong: “Te-bow! Te-bow!” 

The chant, equal parts appreciation and plea, rained down onto the emptying field. Tebow’s performance, the aftermath, his new starting position — all of it is enough to make you believe there’s something larger at work here, something otherworldly and ethereal, something you can’t name but still know. Yes, it must be said: Tim Tebow is enough to make anyone, even John Fox, believe in intangibles. 

Tim Keown is a senior writer for ESPN The Magazine.

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Tim Tebow’s Faith (Part 3)

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Tim Tebow’s Faith (Part 3)

Tim Tebow’s Faith (Part 3)

Another look at the faith of Tim Tebow.

The NFL athlete reflects on his outspoken faith, whether athletes should attribute their wins to God, and moving from the Focus on the Family ad to Jockey ads.
Interview by Sarah Pulliam Bailey | posted 6/10/2011 09:27AM

Nobody knows when the NFL season will start, but that isn’t stopping Tim Tebow from building his brand during the lockout. The Denver Broncos’ second-year quarterback recently released his memoir, Through My Eyes (HarperCollins), which replays the stories behind his mother’s difficult pregnancy with him, the Heisman trophy win, and the first-round NFL selection. During his college football years, Tebow became noticed among Christians for more than his athletic ability after he put Bible verses on his eye black. CT recently spoke with Tebow about why he remains vocal about his faith, fallen Christian athletes, and the absence of his biblical eye black.

Does it surprise you at all that you’ve become kind of a Christian celebrity?

I’m blessed to have a little bit of success in football. My biggest goal with that pedestal is to be a good role model and to take that whatever it is (platform, celebrity, whatever you want to call it) and be a great model and inspire. I’m thankful for the ability to share my faith in a lot of different places. It’s something that I take as a responsibility and an obligation to handle as best as I can.

I imagine you get some criticism for being outspoken about your faith as being over the top or maybe an attempt to build a certain image. Has being so outspoken about your faith hurt you at all?

Well, being outspoken about my faith isn’t just something that I do; it’s who I am because my faith isn’t just a little piece of my life. It is my life. It’s not a question of whether I’m outspoken about it or not. I’m definitely not ashamed of it. And first off, I’m extremely proud of my faith. I try to be as real and honest about everything and very genuine with people and say, “Listen, I’m a Christian and I’m not perfect. I screw up every day, but I think that’s what grace is all about.”

Other Christians in sports, like Butler basketball coach Brad Stevens, have been quieter about their faith. Is it ever more effective for coaches or athletes in certain positions to be more subtle about their faith? Or is it always good to be open about it?

It’s something you have to handle with class and be real about it, not be like overly judgmental or dig into people with other faiths. It’s about accepting everybody for who they are and being real with them. They have to handle, as best they can, how they’re trying to handle their witness and who they’re trying to affect. Every situation is very different.

Even as you’re trying to use your platform for good, do you ever wonder or worry about the idea that you might contribute to a culture of celebrity obsession or idolatry?

I don’t necessarily think about that too much, but when people look at me or look up to me, hopefully they see that it’s not about me. It’s having a relationship with Christ, and it’s a lot bigger than me. And that’s what I’m living for—it’s not the money or the fame. It’s having a relationship with Christ, impacting a lot of people and trying to help, encourage, and inspire people.

Occasionally we’ll see a Christian athlete who has been vocal about their faith fall into alcohol, drugs, or something similar. Do you worry that you might feel the pressures that come with being in professional sports?

People have to realize that just because you’re a Christian, it doesn’t mean that you’re perfect, because every once in a while everyone stumbles. Living by faith is about when you do mess up, getting back up, brushing yourself off, and keep trying to improve where you mess up or where you have temptation. I screw up all the time. I’m not saying you have to be perfect because you can’t, but our goal is just trying to improve.

NFL writer David White, who is leaving sports journalism for full-time ministry, recently wrote, “Thou shalt absolutely not say your team won because it was God’s plan. What does the Lord have against the other team?” Should Christian athletes avoid attributing their wins to God? Does it risk gloating or pride or making the other team seem like they’re not on God’s side?

I don’t think it risks anything to say that that something was God’s plan. At the end of the day, everything is God’s plan and he cares about what we do. He cares about our hearts, how we play the game, and how we treat people. He’s definitely involved with how we handle sports and not just the outcome of it. I’m proud when athletes mention God in any way. When they have an opportunity to mention God, I applaud them for doing it and having the courage to do so. I can understand the writer’s point as well, though.

As the NFL owners and players struggle over contracts, is there a Christian perspective on the lockout?

This lockout is about a lot more than just money. Yes, the biggest thing about this lockout is money, but there’s a lot of other things that are being measured and being negotiated. I will not be heavily involved, because there are other things that I’m going to continue to work on during this time. I learned a long time ago not to worry about things that I can’t control, so I’m not going to spend time worrying about it.

The ad you did for the 2010 Super Bowl created a stir initially but turned out to be more neutral politically. Are broadly pro-family messages more effective than specific stances on abortion?

That message was just about my mother’s love for me and about her giving me a chance and her having the courage to do what she believed was right. That commercial wasn’t knocking anyone. It was just talking about the sanctity of life and how amazing life is.

You have appeared in some Jockey ads recently. Are there any specific products you would decline to advertise because of your personal beliefs?

The main things I look for are whether I believe in it, it fits my character, and it fits what I do. But the products I’m behind are ones that I believe work. I use it and also believe in the people behind it. I believe in their integrity. There are some great products, but if it’s not something I truly believe in because I’m not using it every day then I’m not going to endorse it.

Do you have any regrets or anything looking back on the path you have taken?

I’m a firm believer in everything happening for a reason and that God has a plan. There may be times where I want to take back something in a game, but I learn from it to improve.

During your college career, some reporters asked you whether you were a virgin or not. Is the climate in the NFL better or worse? Do you face similar questions?

I guess you will. But I think most people just know who I am and where I stand, and they respect me for that because I stand up for what I believe in. I don’t think that there’s been too much adversity or anything that’s been hard to deal with.

You shifted from putting Bible verses on your eye black to putting them on your wristband due to NFL rules. Will you continue to do that?

Now I can’t put it on a wristband, so who knows? Maybe I’ll try to find a different way to put it on somewhere.

Maybe your shoe?

I’ll figure it out.

Tim Tebow’s Faith (Part 2)

 

This is a RUSH transcript from “The O’Reilly Factor,” June 3, 2011. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated JUAN WILLIAMS, FOX NEWS GUEST HOST: In the “Back of the Book” segment tonight, Tim Tebow is a quarterback for the Denver Broncos and a man of deep faith. That faith has helped him through football and through controversy.

You may remember that some women’s groups attacked the pro-life Super Bowl ad he did with his mom, who had ignored doctors’ suggestions to abort him for health reasons. Tim has a new book out, “Through My Eyes.” Bill O’Reilly recently talked to Tim.

BILL O’REILLY, FOX NEWS HOST: So here’s what I want to know. I played football at a much lower level than you. In pro football, they have Christian athletes like you, all right? But it’s a secular society. There’s a lot of crazy guys doing a lot of, you know, strip clubs every night, drinking and all this kind of business. Does that impact on the locker room at all, your lifestyle as opposed to theirs?

TIM TEBOW, DENVER BRONCOS QUARTERBACK: To be able to influence someone or to be able to have a group of guys come together to have a successful team and to be together all the time every day for, you know, a year and longer together, you have to have a — find a common ground. And that common ground for us is football.

And when they realize that I go out there and I work as hard as I can every day, they have a respect for me for how I play. And then that respect grows to like. And that like grows to love. And then they’ll play for you. If you walk the walk, then when you say something that’s going to mean so much more. And I think that’s how I try to approach it on the field every day.

O’REILLY: Do you ever get offended by their behavior? I mean, the ones who do not believe the way you believe?

TEBOW: Very rarely, because we all, you know, have things that we’re trying to work on.

O’REILLY: So you don’t judge?

TEBOW: Absolutely not. Because I’m not perfect. I’m never going to be. And that’s the great thing about living the Christian life and trying to live by faith, is you’re trying to get better every day. You’re trying to improve.

O’REILLY: There are some evangelicals who witness, you know …

TEBOW: Absolutely and that is great. But — but the greatest way to witness is by walking that straight and narrow and also realizing that you’re going to mess up. That’s what grace is for. We’re going to fall, but we’ve got to get back up. And you’ve got to improve.

And that’s what I’m all about. It’s not trying to act like I do everything right because I’m going to screw up. I’m going to mess up. But I’m going to get back, you know, and get after it and try to do better the next day.

O’REILLY: Do you pray for victory?

TEBOW: You know, I think He honestly does care about how we play on the field, more than anything more than win or lose our hearts on the field. On the field I’m trying to play for the glory of God but then also I’m trying to give everything I have and win and compete. And so I think more than just winning or losing, I think He cares about where our hearts are when we’re playing.

O’REILLY: So you don’t say before the game with the Dallas Cowboys, “Hey, God, let me win by at least 10 points here to…”

TEBOW: To cover the spread. [Laughs]

O’REILLY: Right. I used to pray. This is absolutely true. I would say, “Please don’t let me break anything.” I want to, you know — I want to keep my head or my arm intact. I would pray for the safety of not only me but the team and let the chips fall where they may.

TEBOW: You know, what I share in this book, I think, more than anything is, you know, I pray that somehow through this game I will be able to honor him, be able to inspire someone, be able to…

O’REILLY: You can do that, sure, by your fame.

TEBOW: But just by how I play.

O’REILLY: The controversy that put you on the map, as far as spirituality is concerned, was the abortion commercial. Do you still get jazzed by that? People remember that and they…

TEBOW: They do remember it. I’ll get asked about it quite a bit.

PAM TEBOW, TIM’S MOTHER: I call him my miracle baby. He almost didn’t make it into this world. I can remember so many times when I almost lost him. It was so hard.

TEBOW: It was honestly — it wasn’t judging anyone or putting anyone down.

O’REILLY: No.

TEBOW: It was celebrating my mom’s decision.

O’REILLY: Right.

TEBOW: And honestly just telling a story and a special story. And, you know, I think we’re very blessed to have the opportunity to tell that story.

O’REILLY: You don’t seem to me like a guy that cares about money or fame that much.

TEBOW: You know, any time of the day that can pop up. You think, oh, this is a great deal. Let me think beyond that. What is — you know, what is the underlying factor? how can I influence someone with that?

And that’s why, more than anything, more than doing it as many doors open as I could all season, anything like that. My No. 1 focus was on my foundation, the Tim Tebow Foundation, to bring faith, hope and love to those needing a brighter day in the darkest hour of need.

O’REILLY: Do you ever get heckled? “Hey, you’re a Boy Scout,” all of that? They’re yelling at you?

TEBOW: Absolutely.

Tim Tebow’s faith (Part 1)

Tim Tebow’s faith (Part 1)

I really respect Tim Tebow and I wanted to pass along an article that defends him.

Tim Tebow, Faith and Blasphemy

CultureEvangelicalsFeaturedProtestantReligionSports — By J.F. Arnold on August 17, 2011 at 5:05 am

I won’t pretend to be an expert in the world of sports. I can tell you if a given team is at the professional or college level for most sports, and at one point I followed both baseball and basketball well enough to name specific players on my favorite teams, but aside from that I am not what anyone could rightfully call a sports buff. It isn’t that I don’t find sports interesting or entertaining, I just have not invested my time and effort into knowledge about players or in-depth strategies usually associated with those who are considered ‘fans.’

But when I saw a story about Tim Tebow, a football player for the Denver Broncos (that’s a professional team; see, I know my stuff!), that has sparked some controversy, I could not pass up providing some commentary.

It is important to first read the original statements from Tim Tebow. You can find Tim Tebow’s comments (and the article the above story talks about) here. The quote in question, however, is when Tim said this:

Others who say I won’t make it are wrong. They don’t know what I’m capable of and what’s inside me. My family and my friends have been bothered by what’s gone on [in regards to controversy over him not being transferred to the Dolphins and the media’s response], and I tell them to pay no attention to it. I’m relying as always on my faith.

The statement itself does not strike me as unreasonable. In fact, while it may come across to some as a bit prideful in the beginning, it does sound to me as if he is expressing some humility by the end. In spite of his abilities and accomplishments, he still relies on faith to get him through the controversy. He believes he will make it, partially because he is good at what he does, and partially because he is convinced that God has a plan for him. He may be mistaken about the plan God has, but that discussion is not what caused some controversy.

The controversy comes from a column over at CBS by Gregg Doyel, which concludes with the words “That’s more than wrong. It’s blasphemous.” While I do think Gregg takes Tim’s speech out of context and presumes a meaning upon the words that he did not necessarily intend, I don’t intend to unpack that aspect of the post any more. I also won’t throw any hate-speech at columnist Doyel, in spite of what many claiming the name of Christ have done. For those people, I do apologize, Gregg. Christians aren’t always reasonable, and telling someone outright they are going to hell for a single article strikes me as not only unwise but terribly ungracious.

What I do want to address is the notion that what Tim Tebow said could be considered blasphemy. If Doyel’s interpretation of Tebow’s statement is correct, we must weigh Tebow’s statement and decide if it is mistaken, sinful, or full-blown blasphemy.

Blasphemy, as I understand and mean it, is intentional or intense irreverence towards God. That is an incredibly simple definition, but for now it will suffice. If an individual seeks to honor God in what they say and do, approach that action or belief with humility, and do not contradict what is clearly taught in Scripture, I suspect they should not be called blasphemous. Mistaken, yes. Sinful even. But the term blasphemy has a weight and a force behind it that I do not think Tim Tebow deserved, even with Doyel’s interpretation.

Doyel brings up an ever present question: what about those times when we have faith and God does not answer our prayers? He specifically speaks to the parent who prays for healing and their child dies anyway. Surely Tebow does not believe that his faith necessarily correlates to God’s action while the faith of a parent with a dying child, or so goes the argument. I don’t agree that one succeeds if faith is great enough and that one fails if faith is weak, and so I think here is where I must depart from Doyel’s interpretation: I simply do not think Tebow was saying that. For the Christian, “God coming through” in regards to faith may mean “God giving me grace to make it through this situation, in spite of what happens.” It does not always mean that our prayers are answered the way we ask them: be that the life of a child or the future of a professional football player. It is hard to know what Tebow believes, and I admit I may be uninformed, since I am not one who keeps up with the profession, but from the quotes I have read of him, he strikes me as one filled with confidence and faith.

Ultimately, I simply disagree with Doyel, though I admit I could be proven wrong. I also find myself suddenly curious about Tebow and his future both as a Christian and a quarterback. I do genuinely wonder how he will respond should he be denied the position on the Broncos he is expecting.

image via flickr.

 

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Pro-life meeting at 1st Baptist Little Rock shows prayer works

SEC East Football Preview jh11

I really think that if you took Georgia, Florida and South Carolina, you could not find ANY DIFFERENCE IN TALENT. To put South Carolina in that group in the past would have been silly. However, Steve Spurrier has them at that level now. Bringing in players the level of Marcus Lattimore is the difference. (Harry King thinks Lattimore may be Heisman material.)

I think about Tennessee’s famous November schedule. They have won about 98% of their November games in the last few years because they usually played Memphis, South Carolina, Vandy and Kentucky. Currently they hold the longest winning streak in the  country against Kentucky and everybody knows how pitiful Memphis and Vandy have been in football, but now SOUTH CAROLINA IS TOUGHER THAN THEY USED TO BE AND THERE IS NO FOR SURE WIN BY UT LIKE THEIR USED TO BE IN THE PAST.

Speaking of Tennessee, I did want to note that although I don’t think a team with only 25% of their team being upperclassmen can compete for a SEC East Championship, I do think they will upset some teams and probably make a run next year.

_______________________

Dr. Bob SEC East Preview

Posted: 8/23/11 05:55 PM ET

I’m excited for the start of another football season and I’ve spent the last month doing a team by team analysis and rating of all 120 Division 1A (aka FBS) teams. My early season ratings have proven more accurate than the Vegas odds makers and last year I pegged Stanford as the 9th best team heading into the season (they were unranked), Oklahoma State rated 19th (also unranked) and had Texas (#5 ranked in the polls) as my 34th rated team. I’ve used my early season ratings to give me an edge over Las Vegas over the years and this year I want to share some conference previews with you. I will also have free analysis of almost every College game in the free analysis section at drbobsports.com.

I’ll start my previews with the SEC East and I’ll post my analysis of the exciting SEC West later this week.

Georgia
(Projected SEC record 5.5 – 2.5, 1st Place East)
Georgia was much better last season than their 6-7 record suggests and the Bulldogs are my slight favorite to win the SEC East. The Bulldogs out-gained their opponents 6.3 yards per play to 5.5 yppl despite facing a schedule of teams that was 0.6 yppl better than average. Georgia was also +10 in turnover margin and had great special teams play, so going 6-7 while out-scoring your opponents by 10.0 points per game was a complete fluke aided by an 0-4 record on games decided by 7 points or less. Georgia’s offense will be led by sophomore quarterback Aaron Murray, who emerged as one of the best quarterbacks in the nation while being named 1st Team Freshman All-American.

Murray will have to adjust to life without star WR A.J. Green, who lifted the Georgia passing game from very good to great when he returned to the lineup after missing the first 4 games due to suspension. Murray was very good in the 4 games without Green, averaging 7.1 yards per pass play (against teams that would combine to allow 5.7 yppp to an average quarterback). Murray averaged 8.2 yppp (against teams that would allow 5.8 yppp) in 8 FBS games with Green in the lineup, so he’ll certainly miss his former star receiver.

I expect Murray to be a better quarterback this season but his numbers will probably be less impressive without Green’s dynamic playmaking ability. Georgia could get a boost in the running game with highly touted true freshman RB Isaiah Crowell as the main back thanks to the absence of last year’s top 2 rushers (Washaun Ealey transferred and Caleb King is out for the season with an injury). The Georgia defense hasn’t been too much better than average in recent years but this year’s stop unit has 7 returning starters and two major additions in run-stuffing DT Jonathan Jenkins (a JC transfer) and USC transfer Jarvis Jones. Georgia should improve significantly on the defensive side of the ball and their special teams will be among the best in the nation. The Bulldogs should be improved while being very likely to improve on their record in close games. Georgia will go from a losing team to a team that will be a major player in the hunt for an SEC Championship.

South Carolina
(projected SEC record 5.3 – 2.7, 2rd Place East)
South Carolina looks like the most well-rounded team in the SEC East from the line of scrimmage, but the Gamecocks will have to improve upon their horrible special teams if they want to return to the SEC Championship game. With their second game of the season being at Georgia, who has among the best special teams units in the nation, the Gamecocks will need to get it together soon if they want a leg up in the division race. There are no problems with South Carolina’s offense or defense, as the Gamecocks return the nucleus of last year’s strong attack (6.2 yards per play against teams that would combine to allow just 5.1 yppl to an average team) with QB Stephen Garcia coming back for his 4th year as the starter, sophomore RB Marcus Lattimore back after a very good frosh campaign (1197 yards at 4.8 ypr and 17 TDs) and 1st Team All-American WR Alshon Jeffery also returning after hauling in passes for 1517 yards at 17.2 yards per catch. Garcia can be turnover prone (14 interceptions last season), but South Carolina’s offense should be very good again this season.

South Carolina’s defense should be the unit that makes the difference this season, as the Gamecocks should fix some of the leaks in the secondary that allowed good quarterbacks to expose them last season. Overall, South Carolina was very good defensively in 2010, as the 5.4 yppl that unit allowed against FBS competition came against a schedule of teams that would combine to average 6.1 yppl against an average defense. The Gamecocks should be even better this season defensively with all of their key components back and with the addition of the top rated freshman defensive linemen (DE Jadeveon Clowney) and the return of LB Shaq Wilson, who led the team in tackles in 2009 but played just 1 game last season due to injury. South Carolina should be among the better teams in the nation from the line of scrimmage and they should improve their special teams enough to make a run at defending their SEC East championship. I actually have South Carolina rated as 1 point better than Georgia, but the Gamecocks face a tougher SEC schedule having to play at Georgia and having to visit Arkansas out of the West (Georgia’s tough SEC West opponent is their home game with Auburn, which is not nearly as tough).

Florida
(projected SEC record 4.5 – 3.5, 3rd Place East)
I expected Florida to be a very good team last season despite the absence of Tim Tebow, but the quarterback play was the worst in Urban Meyer’s coaching career, including his days at Bowling Green and Utah (even after compensating for level of opposing defenses faced). John Brantley was the top rated quarterback of his high school class and had two years in the system as a backup to Tebow, but Brantley was horrible in his first year as the starter. Brantley did connect on a better than average 61 percent of his passes, but the large majority of those completions were short passes (10.3 yards per completion is very low) and his 5.5 yards per pass play (including sacks) was well below even the lowest expectations (6.2 yppp is average). Overall the Gators averaged just 5.1 yards per play (against teams that would allow 5.1 yppl to an average FBS team) and the poor attack was too much to overcome, even with a very good defense (4.7 yppl allowed to FBS teams that would average 5.7 yppl against an average defense) and great special teams.

The Gators start a new regime with former Texas defensive coordinator Will Muschamp as the head coach, highly regarded offensive coordinator Charlie Weis as the OC and former NFL defensive assistant Dan Quinn taking over the defense (although Muschamp will no doubt has a strong influence on that side of the ball). Florida still has elite talent and I expect the offense to be much improved while the defense comes close to last year’s standards despite returning just 4 starters on that side of the ball. I have Florida rated only 2 points worse than South Carolina and just 1 point worse than Georgia, but the Gators have the toughest SEC schedule of those 3 teams and that will make it tough for them to win the East.

Tennessee
(projected SEC record 2.6 – 5.4, 4th Place East)
Tennessee will be better on both sides of the ball in year 2 of coach Derek Dooley’s tenure, but getting back to a bowl game after last year’s 6-7 season will not be easy. The Volunteers’ offense will be led by sophomore quarterback Tyler Bray, who played the last 8 games as a freshman and averaged an impressive 7.3 yards per pass play while facing teams that would allow 6.3 yppp to an average QB. I expect a slight drop in Bray’s production with the loss of his top 3 receivers, including Denarius Moore, who averaged 20.9 yards per catch, but Brey was much better than Matt Simms last season and overall the Tennessee passing numbers should be better.

The Vols were just mediocre running the ball last season, averaging 4.5 yards per rushing play (against teams that would allow 4.5 yprp to an average team) but I expect a slight improvement in the rushing numbers and the offense will be good if Bray cuts down on his interceptions (10 on just 224 pass attempts). The Tennessee defense allowed 5.7 yards per play (against teams that would average 5.8 yppl against an average defensive team) but that unit should be improved despite having just 5 returning starters. The run defense is still likely to be mediocre, but all 4 defensive backs return and the pass defense should be solid. Tennessee should be a few points better in 2011 than they were in 2010, but they’re another year away from contending for an SEC title and they will likely have to win all 4 of their non-conference games, or pull off an SEC upset, to make it back to a bowl game this season thanks to a brutal SEC schedule (they have to play the SEC West’s 3 toughest teams and two of those are on the road).

Kentucky
(projected SEC record 2.1 – 5.9, 5th Place East)
Kentucky has played in 5 consecutive bowl games, but I think that streak will end this season unless new quarterback Morgan Newton is much better than I expect him to be. Newton averaged just 4.5 yards per pass play (against teams that would allow 6.1 yppp to an average QB) on 145 pass plays as freshman in 09 and he was 0.4 yppp worse than average as the starter in Kentucky’s bowl game against Pittsburgh last season (4.9 yppp against a Pitt defense that would allow 5.3 yppp to an average QB). Without last year’s top receivers Randall Cobb and Chris Matthews I don’t see Newton being better than average on a compensated yards per pass play basis. The good news is that Newton has thrown only 3 interceptions on 191 career pass plays, as he usually tucks the ball and runs with it rather than forcing throws into traffic.

Last season’s rushing attack was way down even with 4 returning linemen and stars Derrick Locke (887 yards at 5.3 ypr) and Randall Cobb (424 yards at 7.7 ypr) combing for 1311 yards at 5.9 ypr. Overall the Wildcats were only slightly better than average running the ball in 2010 (4.9 yards per rushing play against teams that would allow 4.7 yprp to an average team) and they were 0.4 yprp worse than average without Cobb’s contribution running as a Wildcat quarterback. This season’s top returning back, Raymond Sanders, ran for just 254 yards at 3.7 ypr as a freshman last season and the Wildcats look like a below average rushing team even with 4 returning starters on offensive line. While I think Kentucky’s offense will go from 0.6 yards per play better than average to a bit worse than average, the defense should be much, much better with the loss of only one full-time starter from last year’s team. The Wildcats allowed 5.9 yards per play in 2010 (against teams that would average 5.6 yppl against an average defensive unit) but I project Kentucky at 0.3 yppl better than average this season. Overall, I don’t see Kentucky being much better than an average FBS team, and that’s not nearly good enough to compete in the SEC.

Vanderbilt
(projected SEC record 1.9 – 6.1, 5th Place East)
New head coach James Franklin insists he’s going to turn Vanderbilt’s football fortunes around and he has plenty of experience to work with (19 returning starters plus both kickers), but the Commodores need to greatly improve their pass attack if they have a chance at respectability this season. Incumbent QB Larry Smith was horrible as a sophomore, rating at 2.2 yards per pass play worse than average (3.7 yppp against teams that would allow 5.9 yppp to an average QB) and he was equally horrible last season (3.9 yppp against teams that would allow 6.1 yppp). Smith runs the ball pretty well (429 yards on 76 runs last season), but he’s simply not accurate enough (47.6 percent career completions) to lead the offense to much success.

There was hope that Jordan Rodgers could take over, but Rodgers hasn’t looked good in scrimmages, completing just 7 of 16 passes for a paltry 43 yards and 2 interceptions in the 1st scrimmage and he also struggled last Saturday in the final scrimmage. It looks like Smith will be back at quarterback and it doesn’t appear as if he’s gotten any better either based on the two scrimmages. Overall Vandy QB’s combined to complete just 23 of 48 for just 264 yards in first scrimmage and were even worse last Saturday. Vanderbilt does have two proven running backs in Warren Norman and Zac Stacy, who combined for 790 yards at 5.5 ypr last season, but the offense will only work if the quarterback play vastly improves. Vanderbilt’s defense should go from slightly worse than average (5.9 yppl allowed to teams that would average 5.7 yppl) to better than average against both the run and the pass with a much more experienced unit (8 returning starters this year and just 4 last year) and a good secondary. Vanderbilt gets Kentucky at home and that’s their chance to get out of the SEC East basement.

I’ll post my analysis of the exciting SEC West Division later this week and will post the other major conferences as the season approaches.

_______________________________________

Florida Gators’ Tim Tebow grips religion as firmly as a football

Antonya English, Times Staff Writer
In Print: Saturday, January 3, 2009

Tim Tebow had watched and admired Texas quarterback Colt McCoy from afar for quite some time, so when the two finally met last month, Tebow was excited about the opportunity. But their first conversation wasn’t about which country music star each has on his iPod (although that came later) or who plays on the better team. It was about God and the profound faith each publicly professes on a regular basis. “No. 1 what I like about him is his strength to show his faith and not be ashamed of that,” Tebow said. “We’re very similar in that way. And I wanted to compliment him on his beliefs and how he’s not ashamed to show it.”

A few days after that awards show at Lake Buena Vista, Tebow, McCoy and Oklahoma quarterback Sam Bradford were getting ready to step into the auditorium at the Nokia Theatre in New York before the Heisman Trophy ceremony began. McCoy and Bradford were nervous. They hadn’t been there before. Tebow, who won the Heisman last season, calmed them both by telling them to enjoy the moment. And if they should win, he reminded them, remember to give thanks to who deserved most of the credit.

“I just said give credit to God and represent for him,” the Florida quarterback said. “I really tried to (stress) that the whole time. I talked to them two or three times about it.”

And so when Bradford stepped onto the stage to accept his Heisman, one of the first things out of his mouth was giving thanks to God.

For Tebow, the son of Christian missionaries whose father, Bob, runs an orphanage in the Philippines, in good times and bad, no matter where he is or whom he meets, his faith is what guides the way. After the September loss to Ole Miss, Tebow gave the now-famous postgame speech to reporters in which he promised that he and the Gators would outwork every other player and team in the nation.

He ended it in much the same way he does many of his interviews — with “God bless.”

“Tim understands, we’re here for a reason,” said McCoy, the Heisman runnerup. “God has blessed us. He has given us the ability to play, to compete. And we just want to be a light for him out there.”

Holding firm to faith

On the September day the Gators walked off in agony after their loss to then-unranked Ole Miss, all eyes were on Tebow. It was he who had been stopped on a crucial fourth and 1 that ended the comeback hopes.

As he walked off the field, underneath his teary eyes, painted in white on his eye-black patches, was: Phil 4:13.

The Philippians 4:13 verse reads: “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

He wears it in every game. It is, in essence, a guideline for his life.

“He doesn’t do it for show or for people to talk about,” sophomore offensive lineman Maurkice Pouncey said. “It’s just a way to show what he’s about, what he believes, how he lives. It’s really that simple.”

After that loss, Tebow reminded his teammates that everything happens for a reason. God has planned it that way. Their goal was to find the good in the loss and turn it to their advantage.

Again, his faith never wavered.

“It’s who he is,” senior receiver Louis Murphy said. “You don’t question that. You respect it.”

Which is why Tebow can walk the very fine line of always publicly professing his faith, yet somehow never offending.

“He doesn’t fear anything,” UF coach Urban Meyer said. “A lot of people take their heart out, rip it out of their chest and lay it on the table. I’m not willing to do that, and certainly not my family. But Bob (his father) is that way, and Pam (his mother) and their whole family. They have such a strong faith. In this world of hypocrisy, there’s none (with them).”

Meyer admits he had heard about Tebow’s strong beliefs, and when he first met him, he was skeptical.

“I was like okay, come on, the Philippines, c’mon give me the real gig here,” Meyer said. “You want a hat? What’s the deal? But it’s true. It’s all from the heart. I love that guy. I’ve never met one like him.”

Tebow understands that being the starting quarterback at Florida has given him a platform to tell others about his faith in a unique way. His high profile is what got him into Florida state prisons last summer to talk about Jesus. Talk of his faith is what caused a large group of men to convert.

“For me, I just want to be a good role model, like (former UF quarterback) Danny Wuerffel was for me and several other guys that I looked up to,” Tebow said. “I want to be someone that kids can look up to in today’s society.”

In this era, church attendance in many places has waned. Why has Tebow been able to stand out with his faith without opposition?

“I really think a lot of it is because he’s just a good person,” said Matt Hayes, national college writer for the Sporting News. “There’s so much negative about sports in general these days: from off-field issues, to coaches breaking contracts, to the daily police blotter report. Here you have a guy like Tebow who not only is one of the elite players in the nation, but is genuinely someone who looks for the good in people and wants to help. That’s not to say there aren’t other players who don’t think/feel/act the same way, but Tebow’s success on the field has put him in position to be recognized for what he accomplishes off it.”

And it’s not something Tebow takes lightly.

Just a regular guy

So how does a star player who is so grounded in his faith manage to remain the most popular guy on the team, never isolating himself from others?

By being just one of the guys.

In his rare off-time, Tebow isn’t standing on a corner waving a Bible and a sign condemning nonbelievers to hell. But he is working prison ministries, traveling to foreign countries to give his testimony and volunteering for those less fortunate. He holds Bible studies and participates in the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. Former roommate Tony Joiner often participated in the Bible study, which he admitted even surprised him. Tebow listens to Kenny Chesney and tells jokes like everyone else.

“He’s just a regular guy,” receiver Percy Harvin said. “To us, that (his religion) is just Tebow. That’s who he is, so it doesn’t seem unusual. And everybody understands that.”

Added Murphy: “I can’t explain it any better than this: He’s a great God man, and everything falls in line for him because of the way he lives.”

Antonya English can be reached at english@sptimes.com

Florida quarterback Tim Tebow’s eye-black patches remind him: “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

Florida quarterback Tim Tebow’s eye-black patches remind him: “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

 

Tim Tebow being persecuted for his Christian faith?

It is clear to me that Tim Tebow is trusting in the Lord and he does not want to get discouraged by the world’s negativity. However, I do not think that he believes that if you have faith then you will become rich and everything you do will bring success as the world thinks of the word. Jeremiah was called the “weeping prophet” and he was killed but he was successful at getting the warning out to God”s people about the coming time of judgement.

Anugrah Kumar of the Christian Post Magazine had a fine article that I wanted to share with you.  

Florida Quarterback Tim Tebow
(Photo: AP Photo / Dave Martin, File

___________________________

Denver Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow has come under attack from sports analysts for being vocal about the role his Christian faith plays in his National Football League career.

Before his second professional season has even begun, naysayers are questioning his confidence that relies on his Christian beliefs.

CBSSports.com national columnist Gregg Doyel recently analyzed Tebow’s interview with Denver Post and said the way he equated his love for God in heaven with tangible rewards on earth amounted to blasphemy. The interview was prompted by reports that Tebow might not begin the season as Denver’s starting quarterback.

Doyel’s analysis angered Tebow’s fans. “Dude, your article bothers me. You know dang well that you painted Tebow as a religious nut-job,” complained one Daniel Liebman. Doyel Friday responded to what he described as “hate mails” from “Tebow fanatics.”

“I didn’t paint him as a religious nut-job. Tebow’s the one holding the brush. I just hung his art on the wall and asked you folks to take a look,” the columnist said.

“Your article on Christian faith is extremely offensive,” wrote another fan, Chance Jones. “I have forwarded my thoughts to many individuals at CBS Sports and will no longer be a customer.” Doyel listed the responses sent by Tebow’s fans followed by a statement defending his analysis.

While Tebow is not known to have responded to criticism, he posted “Joshua 1:19” on his Facebook page Friday. The verse, which reads, “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go,” alluded to the charge.

Debi Albritton, a fan commented, saying, “Your faith and your continued show of faith even against all the naysayers is a testament to all Christians. May God bless you and continue to strengthen you against all the adversity you receive!”

Doyel’s article juxtaposed views that suggest “Tebow will never be a good NFL quarterback,” with his confidence in God for his success. “He doesn’t believe it. Which is fine… But check out the reason why he doesn’t believe it,” the sports columnist continued.

Then Doyel quoted Tebow as saying, “Others who say I won’t make it are wrong. They don’t know what I’m capable of and what’s inside me. My family and my friends have been bothered by what’s gone on, and I tell them to pay no attention to it. I’m relying as always on my faith.”

“He’ll make it in this league – for the Bible tells him so,” Doyel remarked. “From the outside it looks like Tebow equates his love for God in heaven with tangible rewards here on earth. And that’s more than wrong. It’s blasphemy.” However, Doyel claimed he had nothing against Tebow or his God and that he considered him the nicest person he had ever met.

Collin Hansen, editorial director of The Gospel Coalition, in a blog Friday, commented on the controversy involving Doyel and Tebow.

“I’m not sure if Doyel knows what blasphemy is, or the seriousness of the charge he’s leveling against Tebow,” Hansen commented. “Tebow could be saying he relies on his faith to withstand criticism and pressure, not that he finds assurance in his future as a starting quarterback because God loves him.”

However, Doyel agrees Tebow’s life has been “grandiose.”

“He was the best high school player in America. The best college player in America, and one of the most accomplished players – one Heisman, two national titles – in history. A first-round draft pick of the Denver Broncos in 2010.”

At college in Florida, Tebow frequently wore biblical verses on his eye black. In the 2009 Bowl Championship Series, he wore “John 3:16” on his eye paint, reportedly causing 92 million people to search the verse on Google. Later, Tebow switched to “Proverbs 3:5-6,” again causing 3.43 million searches of the verse together with “Tim Tebow.”

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