Friday, April 19, 2024

Why Are Sports Not Worldly?

by Karl Gaiser

I realize that this might be stepping on some toes, but I am at a loss as to why, when we are called to separate from the world and worldly activities, why many fundamentalist pastors ignore the area of sports?  I am not talking about the playing of sports, the competition aspect of sports or even the sport itself, what I am talking about is rooting for or being a fan of a sports team, promoting that team and the atmosphere in which the sporting event is conducted.

I have heard presented, that the NFL must be of the devil as the majority of its contests are conducted on Sunday and by default, college football is the better alternative.  This being said, most fundamentalist pastors preach vehemently against public institutions of higher learning, but let them trot 11 young men onto a football field and they lose all sense.  We oppose their political departments, their English departments, their science departments, but football is OK.  Why?  Their stadiums are full of people the Bible would describe as naked, the music is horrible, the players and coaches are often of suspect character and the amount of alcohol consumed in celebration of the game, before, during and after, would float the ark.

Professional sports are no better.  Alcohol is the major sponsor of and served at most all the venues.  Behavior by the coaches and athletes is deplorable.  The music is filthy.  Debauchery abounds.

How about watching sports on TV?  I know people that do not have a television set in their homes, yet come game time, they will compromise their principle of not watching TV to view the home team.  I have heard said that this is a viable alternative to going to the stadium, but there still is the nakedness, the rock music, participants of questionable character and now, add to it alcohol advertising and the commercials promoting all the filthy programs that we hold a conviction against watching.

Go to just about any fundamentalist pastor’s blog or church website and you can find pictures taken with the youth group at a game and photos of family members posing in the dress of the local team (college or pro) supporting that team.  What are we teaching our young people and new converts by this?  What are you promoting when you wear the logos and colors of your favorite team?

I am not trying to take the holier than thou attitude with this, but I feel that separation should include sports and if you fail to do so, but continue to preach separation, then you are being hypocritical.  I am being genuine in looking for an answer to this.  What am I missing?

Suppose, I chose to separate from everything but rock music, for certain I would be the topic of next Sunday night’s sermon!


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  1. I think you are a nut. By the way you, you saybyou ate looking for an answer, but uou have skresdy concluded. You people are wierd!

    • I like to think I am peculiar.
      Yes, I have already concluded, but it is a very recent conviction that I have developed. This will be my first summer without baseball. I just felt that I had to put this out there and see if maybe I made this decision in haste. I don’t believe I have, but if there is something I am missing I would like someone to point it out. However, I do still feel that my walk can only be enhanced by eliminating this worldliness from my life.

  2. Ouch! I don’t think there is anything to be said in defense of “Sports Entertainment” than people just simply choose to compromise in this matter. It is absolutely inconsistent with so many of our Biblical beliefs, yet “we” promote it. It is ridiculous how many times we have to “look away,” “change the channel,” or “turn down the volume.” Thank you for having the boldness to address this “Sacred Cow!”

  3. I believe you are right, the command is not to love the world and the things in it, certainly sports are “in it” . I asked a friend who is a preacher about the inevitable sucker punch of cheerleaders, beer commercials or subtil sexuality in commercials… if you’re gonna be honest there’s enough to avoid it all together. Preachers, come on! You love sports? Take the family and the church to the park and play..! America needs us to make the difference!

  4. For better or worse, I have never been a fan of any sort of team sports in the first place.
    For what its worth, my fundamental pastor is also not a sports fan of any sort.

    I wish I could say that we knew something that you and others have only recently discovered,
    but more accurately, this is only our personal preferences.

    I might like to advocate for bike riding for you and your children. It is good exercise
    and can be a family activity. I used to do that when my children were growing up.

  5. It is my personal belief that the Apostle Paul more than likely was a sports fan based on his racing and boxing type analogies. If you research the Greek history of these things, you’ll see that there was much worldliness involved then as well (most competed in the nude!)
    We are not to be of the world, but we do live and minister in the world. If you separated from everything that had any kind of worldly aspect, you could never any lost person unless they (on their own) appeared at your church.
    I’m certain you shop at, eat at, purchase things from institutions that sell or serve alcohol, or find pro-homosexual lobbyists. Where do you draw the line? I think we must all study the scriptures, pray, and decide where it will be drawn for us and our households. I won’t criticize your conviction, but you also should not criticize mine when it’s something the Bible doesn’t specifically address.

    • I go into the world and boldly proclaim the gospel on a regular basis. Last week the Lord allowed me to lead two precious souls to Him, and one even came to church and got baptized. Praise Him! How about you?
      So while I go into the world, I choose not to participate in their activities. I can go to a stadium and hand out tracts and not be a part of their crowd. Just remember who it is that rules this world.

      • You missed the point completely, and at the same time because defensive, bragging about the “two precious souls.” I pastor a church, and certainly in the past week, I’ve had plenty of good things happen (thanks to God) including folks added to the church, but I’m not here to have a “Who’s More Spiritual” competition with you. That was the point of my response. I don’t begrudge you your conviction, but please don’t give the impression that it makes you somehow a “better Christian” than those who don’t hold to that same standard. In love, brother, your post and response reveal a heart problem.

        • It is pretty easy to sling that mud behind an anonymous log in. We will continue this when you print your name. Job 38:3a.


  6. I agree with this article. Recently I was in a thrift store and saw a book about football stadiums appropriately named “Autumn’s Cathedrals”. Hmmm!


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