Tebow to critics: I won’t back off talking about Christ
November 23, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Even as Denver Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow continues to stump critics with his miraculous game-saving abilities, the NFL’s rising star has again proved that he’s not about to let fame get in the way of his relationship with God.
In a radio interview on Monday discussing Tebow, former Broncos quarterback Jake Plummer had complained that the overtly Christian football sensation should tone it down. Plummer told radio’s XTRA Sports 910 in Phoenix that he respected Tebow’s abilities, but “when he accepts the fact that we know that he loves Jesus Christ, then I think I’ll like him a little better.”
“I don’t hate him because of that, I just would rather not have to hear that every single time he takes a good snap or makes a good handoff,” he said.
Tebow, who rose to the top of college football as 2007 Heisman Trophy winner and 2009 offensive MVP of the BCS National Championship, told ESPN that he wasn’t about to back off his faith.
“If you’re married, and you have a wife, and you really love your wife, is it good enough to only say to your wife ‘I love her’ the day you get married? Or should you tell her every single day when you wake up and every opportunity?” he said. “And that’s how I feel about my relationship with Jesus Christ, is that it is the most important thing in my life.
So any time I get an opportunity to tell him that I love him or given an opportunity to shout him out on national TV, I’m gonna take that opportunity. And so I look at it as a relationship that I have with him that I want to give him the honor and glory anytime I have the opportunity. And then right after I give him the honor and glory, I always try to give my teammates the honor and glory.
“And that’s how it works because Christ comes first in my life, and then my family, and then my teammates. I respect Jake’s opinion, and I really appreciate his compliment of calling me a winner. But I feel like anytime I get the opportunity to give the Lord some praise, he is due for it.”
The quarterback of Christian homeschooled background has drawn the curiosity of the world of sports not only for his extraordinary athletic ability, but for his routine signs of faith on and off the field: even his prayerful genuflections after successful plays have been coined “Tebowing.” The phenomenon became so well-known that a small wave of controversy hit the Internet after the Lions’ Stephen Tulloch appeared to mock-Tebow after his team soundly defeated the Broncos: but Tebow himself didn’t take offense.
Tebow has also used his fame to the benefit of the unborn: the Tebow family, most notably in a Superbowl ad by Focus on the Family last year, have candidly shared that they chose life for their son Timmy when doctors pressured his mother to abort due to medical complications.
Whether or not the world of sports ever gets used to the Bible verses dabbed on Tebow’s eye black, some say the young star’s “miraculous” wins are just one part of the package for a uniquely faith-filled character - an asset some say professional football has largely forgotten.
“Marshall Faulk—a truly great running back—said last night that he can’t analyze Tebow’s faith, only what happens on the football field. He had a good point, but he’s missing something: Tebow’s game intertwines them,” wrote Elisabeth Meinecke of Townhall after Tebow’s incredible 95-yard game-winning drive against the Jets.
“If you want to analyze his game, you need to understand his motivation and how powerful that faith can be. It doesn’t mean you have to adhere to his faith; but it’s silly to pretend that it’s not a factor in his game.”