God was at the Olympic Games.
A few years ago I was fortunate enough to visit Olympia in Greece where the Ancient Olympic Games originated in 776BC. I remember the tour guide telling us about how magnificent the Statue of Zeus was and that it was one of the seven wonders of the ancient world, erected at Olympia, to preside over the games.
The ancient Olympic Games were a series of athletic competitions among representatives of various city-states of Ancient Greece and were held in honour of Zeus. They were of fundamental religious importance and ritual sacrifices honouring both Zeus and Pelops, divine hero and mythical king of Olympia were practised along with the athletic events. They continued to be celebrated when Greece was colonised by the Romans, but the emperor Theodosius I suppressed them in 394 AD, as part of the campaign to impose Christianity as the state religion of the Roman Empire.
Wikipedea - “The seated statue, some 12 meters tall, occupied half of the width of the aisle of the temple built to house it. "It seems that if Zeus were to stand up," the geographer Strabo noted early in the 1st century BC, "he would un roof the temple." The statue Zeus was a chryselephantine sculpture, made of ivory and gold-plated bronze. The sculpture was wreathed with shoots of olive worked in gold and seated on a magnificent throne of cedar wood, inlaid with ivory, gold, ebony, and precious stones - a most extravagant image of ancient furniture. In Zeus' right hand there was a small statue of crowned Nike, goddess of victory, also chryselephantine, and in his left hand, a sceptre inlaid with gold, on which an eagle perched. Plutarch, in his Life of the Roman general Aemilius Paulus, records that the victor over Macedon, when he beheld the statue, “was moved to his soul, as if he had seen the god in person,” while the 1st century AD Greek orator Dio Chrysostom declared that a single glimpse of the statue would make a man forget all his earthly troubles.”
Naturally the Statue of Zeus was one of the first to be demolished and sold off by the enraged Christians, just like the Taliban blew up the statues of Buddha in Afghanistan. Paul had declared to the Greeks that there was only one God and that God was Jesus Christ. Even today one can see many athletes praying to Jesus Christ before they get set for their event. They make the sign of the cross and look up to heaven (sky) in hope and expectancy that God will miraculously intervene and empower them to win.
So my question to the God fearing is; if God is at the Olympics, who does he support? Many athletics plead for God’s favour so that they can achieve a gold medal. They believe that if they pray to God, he will give them the strength to win. That has to be a nonsense - why would God be concerned with the outcome of a sporting contest? What a dilemma for God! One thing I do know; if they win, they will say that it was God’s will and if they lose, they will also say that it is God’s will.
Yet most athletes at the Olympics however want to win just like Lolo Jones from the USA who stated that she could do all things through Christ just before her event. (Referenced here *) Another Christian athlete was embarrassed by his faith and de-converted - “Champion triple jumper Jonathan Edwards famously prayed before taking part in competitions but now says he feels slightly embarrassed". (Read more here **)
No wonder there is soo much evil and suffering in the world. God is at the Olympics. He is too busy “match fixing” to prevent disasters, famine, earthquakes and tsunamis. Sportsmen think that if they believe in God they will have extra strength to win. That is an addiction like a drug and should be banned, as the Christians have an unfair advantage over the sports men who are atheists. However in reality it is nonsense because why would God even care about a sporting event when he could not prevent over six million of his own chosen race from being annihilated in the holocaust, he seems to be inert and silent as if he does not exist.
China came second in the medal count so their God is very strong than other countries Gods. No, wait Chinese athletes are probably communist atheists and followers of many religions. So which nations God is the greatest? What about South Africa’s God? May be he is Poseidon because we seem to be very blessed in the water sports. But does Poseidon exist? In some people minds he does, but in reality? No. So who does God support? I know the Americans think God is a Yank as they, despite having a much smaller population than Africa, won the most medals. The British have a smaller population then Nigeria but came third in the medal count. Does God love the British and hate Africa? Compared to her population Africa should have as many medals as China. Yeah, God must hate Africa. What about South Africa? We could not even qualify for the men’s soccer. Only six medals? Yeah, God has left South Africa. Australia with half South Africa’s population did exceedingly well. God must speak with an Aussi twang.
But let’s be honest, when scientifically tested, prayer has been proven to be a failure. Claims that prayers succeeds, is anecdotal, where the prayer is confusing correlation with causation. For everyone claiming to be saved by prayer, you will find that many more have not been saved and that prayer has gone un-answered. Rational people consider this to be strong evidence that prayer is a superstition. When it seems to work, at the very most, what you are experiencing is a placebo effect; not that placebos can't be useful to those who believe that they are getting real treatment. But they aren't divine. And there isn't any evidence that anything is in fact divine. However the believer requires little or no evidence to believe all sorts of wild claims associated with his belief. Prayers works no better than wishing on a star... which is exactly what one would expect if no Gods existed.
So it would seem that Zeus, Poseidon and the Christian God are both equally silent and inert as if they do not exist. Yet you would think prayer should work as these scriptures from the Bible promise us:
"Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you." (Matthew 7:7)
"Again I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven." (Matthew 18:19)
"And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive." (Matthew 21:22)
"Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them." (Mark 11:24)
"….. Verily, verily, I say unto you, whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my name, he will give it you." (John 16:23)
I know that the generations to come in the future will be more advanced and educated then us, and they will shake their heads at the crazy myths of their ancestors. They will have a hard time thinking that anyone really believed in Christianity, just like I have a hard time, believing that people took Zeus and the Greek Myths seriously.