Paul, Boxing, and MMA

boxing

Was the Apostle Paul a fan of boxing? We can’t say with certainty that he was. But we know he understood the sport.

So I do not run aimlessly; I do not box as one beating the air.
-1 Cor. 9:26 ESV

In this passage, Paul used two sports to describe metaphorically what the Christian faith is like: running and boxing. It seems strange to me that he would use an inherently sinful sport as a positive analogy for the Christian faith. A better explanation is that Paul apparently saw a redeeming value in sports (the training and disciplining of one’s body and competing and winning a prize, to name a few) and in his mind, combat sports1 (like boxing) were honorable endeavors. (more…)

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Don’t Sell Short the Gospel

Here is a passage of Scripture that we’ve no doubt heard:

Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. (1 Corinthians 6:9-10)

The list is interesting. Thieves and adulterers. Greedy people and idolaters. Drunkards and homosexuals. I don’t think Paul is trying to equate any of these sins with each other– other than the fact that they are sins and they prevent access into God’s kingdom. And since homosexuality seems to be the popular topic these days, let me clarify. When looking at the issue of homosexuality being a sin, Paul is not just talking about underage male prostitutes as some liberals attempt to portray. The Greek term used here refers explicitly to the “active” and “passive” roles in the homosexual relationship. Men having sex with men is definitely sinful.

But if that’s all we preach, we are selling short the Gospel of Jesus Christ. (more…)