Tim Tebow

*RNS: Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Tim Tebow won’t be on the Super Bowl field in Miami this Sunday (Feb. 7), but his expected prime-time anti-abortion ad is keeping him in the spotlight, and raising questions about the sometimes awkward balancing act between religion and sports.

“He has become sort of the epitome or exemplar of the engagement between Christianity and big-time sports,” said Tom Krattenmaker, author of the new book, “Onward Christian Athletes: Turning Ballparks into Pulpits and Players into Preachers.”

“I can’t recall ever seeing so much (attention) around one athlete: both incredible respect, incredible accomplishment on the field, sterling character off the field, combined with this level of controversy and discussion and hoopla.”

To be sure, religion and sports haven’t always been on the same team; just ask any pastor who’s found members of his flock out on the links on a Sunday morning instead of in the pews. At the same time, sport evangelism ministries are more than half a century old, and even St. Paul turned to sports metaphors in talking about running “with endurance the race that is set before us.”

Read more, HERE.