With the Tokyo Olympics only a few months away, I have partnered with two other Pastors to produce a devotional that aims to unpack the message of Jesus using sport as the vehicle: The Spirit of Victory. The book provides a daily devotional for each day of the Games taking readers deep into Scripture.
Unpacking the Bible
The primary way God reveals Himself is through the Bible. The Bible is “God breathed” and we want to be faithful to the Biblical text. It is this text that has the power to work hand-in-glove with the Spirit to change lives.
Our desire, as authors, is to point to this Gospel of grace from these Bible passages. Our aim is to allow God’s Word to speak by unpacking the verses and challenging you in its application for your life.
As a result, our devotional has a focus of bringing you, the reader, into God’s Word using sport and the Olympics as the vehicle to point you to Jesus. It is this Gospel, revealed in the Bible, which transforms.
The Apostle Paul talked about sport and the Isthmian Games in a way that reflected this theology that all of life is for God’s Holy Name. We want people to grasp how every area of life, including the Olympics, should bring glory to Jesus and highlight the importance of grace within the gospel.
This book brings together three authors who love Jesus, who have studied and written about the Bible over many years, who have served in ministry, including within sport. Church of Christ Pastors, Travis Barnes and Peter Nelson have contributed chapters to the project, along with myself.
Barnes has been a Pastor in Central Victoria and regular sports journalist and writer for Christian Today Australia. Nelson was Pastor in several Canberra Churches and chaplain at the Australian Institute of Sport as well as Olympics and Commonwealth Games.
Their experience in exploring the Bible and understanding sport within our culture has produced some fascinating chapters such as “The greatest victory” from 1 Corinthians 15: 54-58, “Drowning in honey” Proverbs 25:27, and “The upside of down days” James 1:2-4.
Parts of The Spirit of Victory will feature each day of the Olympics in Christian Today Australia and the book, published by Star Label Publishing, will be available through all good online bookstores soon.
Jeremy Dover is a former sports scientist and Pastor
Jeremy Dover's previous articles may be viewed at https://www.pressserviceinternational.org/jeremy-dover1.html