Have you, perchance, been watching the FIFA Women’s World Cup? I fear that many of you would rather watch paint dry as watch a soccer match...even if it is the World Cup!
Well, as a citizen of the United States, we have a vested interest in the outcome of the World Cup. According to FIFA’s world rankings, the U.S. is ranked second in the world in women’s soccer.
On Monday night, the U.S. played Columbia in the “Round of 16” portion of the tournament for the chance to advance to the quarterfinals. Four minutes into the game, the U.S. scored a goal...except it did not count. The Assistant Referee’s flag was up signaling an off sides call.
Without getting into what “off sides” means in soccer, being a former soccer referee myself, I started to “constructively voice my displeasure” towards what I though was a bad, biased call in a stadium in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada!
Reflecting back, the U.S. player was in an off sides position (but not by much). The correct call was made, even though I was not happy about it.
Then it dawned on me that there was some bias in play...but not by the officials in the match (until the only two US players who had already received a yellow card in the tournament were each shown a yellow card, thus each is suspended for the quarterfinal game). I was biased! My team scored a goal and then someone said, “Sorry, no.”
But this is not just something I struggle with when watching soccer (or any other sport, for that matter). I struggle with it in every other aspect of life.
Unfortunately we sometimes take this same approach to the Bible. When we are engaged in an activity and the Bible points out that God disapproves of that activity, we try to explain it away. One popular way of doing this is saying: “That’s only for people in the first century!”
The Bible is intended for all people for all time. When we have a different “opinion” than the Bible, then we need to change. When we read or study the Bible we need to do so with a attitude free of preconceived ideas and biases.
Arguing with a referee will get you no where fast (I tried it as a player)...or at least no where you want to go. Arguing with God is exactly the same...it will get you no where you want to go: but for eternity!