[I am trying to hate Tim Tebow]. I’m sure he is a fine Christian man, but a couple of years ago his Florida Gators defeated my Ohio State Buckeyes in the national championship game, turning a proud program and sweater vest into the laughingstock of the SEC.
OSU is the only one of my teams to win a championship in my lifetime (and we only won that after we had lost), so you’ll understand if [I cannot forgive Tebow] for destroying the last refuge for sports fans in Northeast Ohio.
Last week I was driving to beautiful Traverse City when I heard a few minutes of Tebow’s interview with Dan Patrick. Patrick inquired about his faith, and I waited for Tebow to embarrass himself with some vague blather about the power of belief in a generic god. But he didn’t. Tebow boldly yet humbly explained that his faith in Jesus Christ is the most important thing in his life.
Then Patrick asked about his visits to death row, and I grudgingly had to admit that Tebow is a smidge superior to Maurice Clarett (who he may have met while visiting the prison). Tebow said that he tells the inmates that all is not lost simply because they performed miserably during the first 3 quarters of their earthly life. The 4th quarter is where games are won, and they can still finish strong and prepare themselves for eternity.
I was impressed by Tebow’s answer, but I don’t think it goes far enough. Besides the fact that the SEC usually puts away Ohio State before halftime, Tebow—like most evangelicals—was strangely silent on the Christian hope for the New Earth. Wouldn’t it be even more encouraging—and true—if Tebow had told the inmates that those who put their faith in Christ don’t merely get an advance start on the next life, but they are given the privilege to return to this Earth and live markedly better than on their first trip? It’s not the same as receiving a mulligan, for our life now counts and has lasting consequences, but it is an opportunity to live as a flourishing human on this planet as God intended.
Tebow may be the best quarterback on the best team in the best conference, but [he sure is dumb]. We may not be able to beat him, but at least we’ll always have Michigan (so says the media guide at Appalachian State).