Weekend Thought by Ray Delaney

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HERE we go, here we go. Yes, the football season is over but the Olympics are almost here.

The Games started in 776BC and were abolished in AD393. They were held every four years. Originally there were competitions between representatives of city-states and kingdoms from Ancient Greece, featuring mainly athletics but also combat and chariot racing events.

Peace was declared when the games were on.

What would the naked male ancient Greek athletes (no female spectators were allowed) have made of the modern Olympic Games which began in 1896 in Athens?

It was 1960 that saw the start of the Parallel Games (now called the Paralympics). I especially admire these athletes for their grit and determination.

The Olympic torch was introduced in 1928 at the Amsterdam Games.

I have found this year’s torch relay fascinating – 8,000 runners (1,000 under 18 years of age) made up of celebrities and local “worthies”.

The carrying of the torch made me think of Jesus who described himself as the Light of the World.

No medals for him but sold for 30 pieces of silver. No olive leaf crown for him but a crown of thorns. Naked, nailed to a cross. But he was the victor who defeated sin, death and the devil. Therefore God exalted him to the highest place.

The Prince of Peace was also King of Kings and Lord of Lords. He was our torch bearer who determinedly set out to bring many sons and daughters to glory.

I shall enjoy the Games. Better still, enjoy the companionship of Jesus, heaven’s champion and for those who followed him in that great relay in the past and today the people’s champion too.