February 4&5/Winning the Game

There is a big football game this weekend.

Judging by the commercials on what you should eat, wear, watch, and obsess over, it could be THE BIGGEST MATCH OF THE YEAR. Yeah, right. Don’t they say that every year? I mean, come on, every year we have to hear about the ‘GREATEST’ half-time show; the greatest person to sing the National Anthem; the greatest advertisements; the greatest food; the greatest quarterback; the best Superbowl party decorations; the best food; and so on and so on.

I’m not knocking football, but even the fans would admit that it isn’t the brainiest sport. Sure, there is strategy–but not as much strategy as a chess match. Sure, there is the ‘brawn’ factor but boxing has that as well.

The biggest draw for the Superbowl (or any game) is the ultimate question: WHO WILL WIN?

Winners get to do commercials for Disneyland, cereals, attire, even sneakers. Losers get….well, NOTHING.

Yet, in the biggest game EVER, the LOSER actually won.

I like to read the Bible just to enjoy God’s strategy. He is one genius of a chess player when you think about it. He created a system of law, observed humanity deliberately breaking it, watched as Satan declared the ‘game’ over, then pulled out a quaterback sneak attack that would make the greatest of football quarterbacks envious!

Matthew 27: 45-54-Now from the sixth hour there was darkness over all the land unto the ninth hour. And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? That is to say, My God, My God, why hast thou forsaken me? Some of them that stood there, when they heard that, said, This man calleth for Elias. And straightway one of them ran, and took a sponge, and filled it with vinegar, and put it on a reed, and gave him to drink. The rest said, Let be, let us see whether Eliias will come to save him. Jesus, when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost. And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent; And the graves were opned; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose, And came out of the graves after his resurrection, and went into the holy city, and appeared unto many. Now when the centurion, and they that were with him, watching Jesus, saw the earthquake, and those things that were done, they feared greatly, saying, Truly this was the Son of God.

God’s law was broken.

Satan, assured of his triumph took the ball and figured that with only seconds left on the clock he had the situation in hand. But God pulled out an unexpected quarterback sneak that saved the world….IF those who wish to do so, acknowledge His play and accept the terms. The end run around ‘law broken by sin’ is Jesus’ grace given by death to accord humanity redemption. God WON by losing his Son for us!

No Superbowl can top the one God initiated in winning over Satan by offering His Son Jesus!

Superbowl Sunday may find me humming Abba’s ‘The Winner Takes it All’..but I’ll be thinking of God’s quarterback sneak…not the Patriots or the Falcons!

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