27% of Americans believe God plays a role in sporting events - FOX 35 News Orlando

Talker: 27% of Americans believe God plays a role in sporting events

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

The Super Bowl is this Sunday. So, does God care who wins?

We know a lot of football players care about God. Ray Lewis of the Baltimore Ravens wears a T-shirt under his uniform that says "Psalms 91." After every game, he's been quoting a bible verse: "no weapon formed against you shall prosper."

The 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick is known for kissing his tattoos, which say "God to glory" and "Faith," after scoring a touchdown.

The Public Religion Research Institute did a survey on whether God is interested in the game. They found that 27 percent of Americans believe God plays a role in determining which team wins a sporting event. The number was much higher if you look at the American south, where 36 percent of people believe God plays a role in who wins. In the Midwest, it's 28 percent and further out west, it's 15 percent.

Half of Americans say they approve of athletes expressing their faith publicly -- for example during on-field interviews. Just 4 percent disapprove of it and 45 percent said it doesn't matter to them.

This week's Sports Illustrated examined whether God cares who wins the Super Bowl and cites potential conflicts between pro-football and Christianity. Jesus Christ, it says, emphasized the weak over the strong and the poor over the rich. He also instructed his followers to honor the Sabbath.

On the other hand, some point out that Christ demands excellence and the NFL is about performing at the ultimate level. They also say sports build character.

In Judaism, a pair of rabbis published separate opinions about God and sports. They each had the same bottom line: God does care how athletes perform because he cares about each and every person on an individual level.

What do you think?

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