Who would have thought millions of people would read a Bible verse because of a football player? But, that’s precisely what happened after Denver Quarterback Tim Tebow threw the longest overtime touchdown pass in the shortest overtime playoff in history.
That pass gave Tebow precisely 316 passing yards in Sunday’s game. It also brought his average for a pass that day to 31.6 yards. This is uncanny, given that John 3:16 is Tebow’s favorite verse and the verse he sported on his eye black when he was in college.
Is all this coincidence? Who knows? But, we do know that on Monday, the day after the game, John 3:16 became the number-one search entry on Google. Just think, because of Tebow’s witness, millions read, perhaps for the first time –“God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son . . .”!
I wonder what the Christians who told Tebow to tone it down are thinking now? They said his expressions of faith were simply alienating those who don’t know Christ. And, I admit, I don’t know if anyone’s become a Christian because of Tim Tebow. But, people now are reading Scripture and God’s Word does not return void.
Recently, I accompanied some students from the Moody Bible Institute as they preached Jesus on a subway platform in Chicago. They, too, say they’ve been criticized for their public method of evangelism. But, as several attested, their witnessing has changed lives.
Once, a church lady confronted D.L. Moody, saying similarly that she didn’t like the way he did his evangelism. Moody replied, “I don’t necessarily like all of it either. . . . Tell me, how do you do it?” “I don’t,” she said. “Well,” said Moody, “I like the way I’m doing it better than the way you’re not doing it.”
I think D.L. Moody would love these Moody students and Tim Tebow. Sure, their evangelism may be as unconventional as the way Tebow plays quarterback. But, at least, they’re doing it – as all of us should be.