For years, the denominations have amazed us with their shenanigans concerning the Bible. They have used material things to entice people into their ranks, and have had to use such to keep them there. I would imagine ff they ceased their social activities, ball games, banquets, etc., they would notice an appreciable drop in their numbers. (Many of our own brethren are no less guilty. We moved our membership to such-and-such because they have more (or the young people to do," is a common statement.) But we ran across a "real winner" the other day. An "All-American Grid Squad!" In the Dec. 10, 1969 issue of the (Tucson) Arizona Daily Star are the names of the players who are on this football team, The article tells us that Christmas Gardens (Whatever that is), in Gatlinburg, Tenn., tried a "dramatic approach" to getting their young people acquainted with the Bible. Here is their "starting lineup."
They tell us the Quarterback would be Solomon. Then the question is asked that tells us why. "Who would be better qualified to call signals than the man generally recognized as the wisest in History?" Oh yes, the article says he barely beat out his father David, who was better thrower (at least with a sling!} for the quarterback position.
And then playing both Left and Right Halfback is Judas. The reason for this is that he was as two-faced as anybody, and had the ability to fool the opposition." To Judas is also attributed leadership ability, strength and courage, and he can also throw the pass on the option play.
Every football team must have a Fullback and this position is occupied by John the Baptist. The reason is for his "aggressive personality" which moved him well through hostile surroundings. (If I remember correctly, Paul did not do too badly in this department either!)
Also, every team has at least two Ends. Paul was one of these, because he "covered so much territory." At the other end, they have Anak, a giant of the Old Testament, because they feel he would be difficult to guard against.
The Tackles are Samson and Goliath. This position requires great physical strength and here are two real strong men. Anyone should be able to play this position ff they could push over a large building! They indicate that in the case of Samson, there must have been no rules against long hair l I do not know who the coach of this team is, since the article did not say. But it appears to me as if he really "goofed" with these two playing Tackle on the same team. From reading the book of Judges, I seem to remember that Samson and the Philistines, of which Goliath was one, did not get along too well!
The Guards on this team are Moses and Jonathan. Moses was chosen because he led Israel out of Egypt, and he "ought to be able to pull out of the line and lead the interference." Somehow, it's difficult for me to imagine Moses as a "pulling guard." According to the article, Jonathan was a "strapping warrior endowed with great team spirit, particularly in games against the Philadelphia Philistines." (In this game, they had better Watch out - Goliath might decide to "throw the game" in favor of his Own people!)
This only leaves the Center position, and this of course is filled by Peter. After all, Jesus said "upon this rock I will build my church," the article says. I guess the Catholics would agree to Peter at the center spot, since they also think Peter was the rock upon which Jesus built the church.
Well, there you have it - the "Bible All-Americans." This is undoubtedly one of the most foolish and absurd things I have ever read. I wonder how much more these young people knew about the Bible after coming up with this asinine illustration. If they want to learn about these people, why not turn to the Bible and study their lives, and the history that had to do with them? Such ridiculous Tom-foolery as this will not better anyone's knowledge of the Bible. Only a persistent and diligent study will do this (2 Tim. 2:15). Besides, being one of those whom some of the brethren jokingly refer to as a "golfing preacher," I object to Paul being on a football team. Everyone knows he was a golfer! After all, didn't he say ".... I have finished the course.... "(2 Tim. 4:8)? Foolish? Yes, but so is this whole idea.
TRUTH MAGAZINE XIV: 22, pp. 2-4
April 9, 1970