Why I won’t get Olympic Games fever

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A sculpture signifying the torch run at the beijing olympic complex

A sculpture signifying the torch run at the beijing olympic complex

The world is crazy with Olympic fever. This olympics makes it the most expensive ever. The opening ceremony was among the most elaborate and grandest ever had.

Many countries in the world will be keeping their eyes peeled on the medal tallies. Huge rewards are being offered to sportsmen and sportswomen who excel and bring home honour to the country.

So what’s the hype?

I’m just listing here some reasons why I don’t think much of the Olympics…

The ‘ancient’ Olympics

Though unconfirmed, the Olympic games was started with some roots in Greek mythology. Heracles started it in tribute to his father Zeus, king of the gods, god of thunder and sky. I don’t believe in Greek gods because my bible tells me

And this is the eternal life, that they should know thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent.
(John 17:3)

Jesus prayed to Father saying He’s the ONLY – the exclusive and only one rightful to be called, TRUE – the ‘real’ and true God. All other ‘gods’ are counterfeits and have no truth in them. They are given the position of god, but they have no divine nature. No divine power. No divine glory.

So to take a keen interest in an event that was established with the purpose to glorify a man (though the Greeks consider him a god), is pointless to me. The time I spend, I’d rather use to the glory of the true and living God.

And everything, whatever ye may do in word or in deed, do all things in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father by him.
(Colossians 3:17)

The ‘revived’ Olympics

When Pierre de Courbertin wanted to revive the Olympics in 19th century, his motivation was to

1. Help the French become more athletic

2. Get young men from all over the world to unite in sport, rather than clash in war.

Noble reasons. But what has been achieved in the past 2 centuries?

Have there been less wars? No. In fact the 2 world wars still happened after the Olympics was revived.

Has there been more unity? No. Countries have learn to be more diplomatic, but in reality, none trust their own neighbor. I can’t remember the year, but there was one Olympics where a bomb blew in one of the complexes and 100+ people got injured. It was a terrorist attack. This year, there was huge Tibet-China skirmishes in the wake of the Olympics and jeopardized the torch run in several stages.

Someone has defined madness as “doing the same thing repeatedly, but expecting different results”. In the same vein, so many Olympics have been held with the hope of the holy grail of peace and unity in the world. The Olympics has clearly not acheived its purposes. So why do it? I suggest some reasons:

1. Financial gain.

With the huge investment countries in hosting such games, come also huge sponsorship and stake holder investment deals. For 2008 Beijing Olympics, more than 2billion is expected to come back to the government in just investors coming to take stakes in the infrastructure build. How that’s going to make up for the 43billion spent since 2001, i don’t know.

2. Human pride

In the ancient Olympics, only men (the stronger sex) were allowed to participate, and they had to compete completely nude. The reason was to celebrate the strength and ability of the human body. Nothing has changed much since then. In over 2 centuries, the only improvement was instead of being nude, they wear tight fitting lycra bodysuits which cleave to every curve and crease. All in the name of aerodynamics. Rubbish.

My bible tells me

And God looked upon the earth, and behold, it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted its way on the earth.
(Genesis 6:12)

…It is sown in corruption…it is sown dishonour…it is sown a natural body…(1Cor15:42-43)

The human body has a problem. It has a nature that has the propensity and ability to dishonour, disregard and disobey God. Why celebrate it? The fastest athlete and the crippled man end in the same place, the grave. The strongest human and the weakest beggar end in the same place, the grave.

Men like to boast. Among the driving factors of the Olympics, is competition, success, name, fame and glory.

Should I glory then in men?

But now ye glory in your vauntings: all such glorying is evil.
(James 4:16)
…so as to be a boast for me in Christ’s day, that I have not run in vain nor laboured in vain.
(Philippians 2:16)
But he that boasts, let him boast in the Lord.
(II Corinthians 10:17)

When I consider the glory of the One who died and gave Himself for me, and today expects that I give my all to him, I have no interest in partaking in the glorification of man.

Yup, this Olympics, I’ll be the party pooper. 🙂

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One thought on “Why I won’t get Olympic Games fever

  1. from wikipedia:

    Despite what Coubertin had hoped for, the Olympics did not bring total peace to the world. In fact, three Olympiads had to pass without Olympics because of war: due to World War I the 1916 Games were cancelled, and the summer and winter games of 1940 and 1944 were cancelled because of World War II. A recent and more ironic example is that in the 2008 South Ossetia War, Georgia and Russia started their engagement on the same day the 2008 Summer Olympics began.

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