Super Bowl LII set all kinds of records. The Eagles and Patriots combined for the most yards ever in an NFL playoff game. Nick Foles was the first quarterback ever to catch a touchdown in a Super Bowl. It was the first Super Bowl title for Philadelphia, a team which was the underdog in all three of its playoff games.
Nick Foles has to be the most famous backup quarterback in the world today. Forced into action when franchise quarterback Carson Wentz went down earlier in the season with a knee injury, he led his team to the world title and was named Super Bowl MVP. His coach, Doug Pederson, was coaching in high school nine years ago and led his team to the world title in only his second season in Philadelphia.
But for me, the most significant part of the game came during the awards ceremony. Coach Pederson said, "I can only give the praise to my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ for giving me this opportunity." Tight end Zach Ertz, who made the game-winning catch, then told the audience, "Glory to God first and foremost." Super Bowl MVP Nick Foles followed Ertz to the microphone and said the same.
Foles describes himself on Twitter as a "believer in Jesus Christ, husband, father, son, brother." Many of his teammates share his faith in Jesus and are willing to make their commitment public.
The issue of athletes glorifying God at the end of victories is an ongoing debate. Some see it as an imposition of personal faith on the public. Others ask whether the players would have praised God if they had lost.
To me, Coach Pederson and his players were simply following the biblical example: "Not to us, O Lord, not to us, but to your name give glory" (Psalm 115:1). Scripture teaches, "Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing praise" (James 5:13). We are commanded to "continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, the fruit of lips that acknowledge his name" (Hebrews 13:15).
When are we to glorify God? "Continually."
Originally posted at the the Denison Forum.