This year I’ve really gotten into watching baseball. I think its in part because of my brother-in-law Kurt’s excitement for sports and my grandpa’s love for baseball. Baseball is a pastime in this country and I am a fan. I live near the Colorado Rockies’ stadium in Denver (20 minutes or so away) and I keep track of their activities with some regularity. This last Friday their head coach, Clint Hurdles, was released from his position and was replaced by their bench coach as the interim coach. This change is one I don’t agree with as a fan, but they didn’t ask me. Here’s where the theology comes in: the first basement Todd Helton, a believer, was interviewed and had this to say:
“We should be held just as accountable as anybody. Obviously, he takes the sword for us. He didn’t have any bad at-bats, he didn’t throw any bad pitches. He’s the same manager he was two years ago [editor: when the Rockies went to the World Series]. We realize that. We realize that ultimately we are the reason he got fired because we played bad baseball. We definitely feel responsible.”
There are times when one person takes the fall for a group. Christ, being the only acceptable sacrifice for the sins of mankind made the sacrifice. We all deserved the penalty for our not ‘playing well’ – there is no minor leagues for real life where you get to figure out this being a human thing and then bring it to the big game. Instead you get to screw up in front of everyone, blow it miserably in front of anyone, and ultimately stand before God as having failed to live up to His glory (Romans 3:23) – accept if Christ took your place in judgment on the cross. Then you were identified with His crucifixion, death, burial, resurrection, ascension and seating. The Rockies players know that they were saved from being dropped into the minor leagues because of their coaches sacrifice.
We know that without the sacrifice of Christ we would have nothing to stand before God with that would give us any confidence. Instead of the worry of judgment for punishment, we look forward to a judgment for rewards. One where heaven will become a place for a bride and the bride groom. It will be a perfect game, one with no outs, endless innings, and no injuries. Oh, and I think that there will be no stealing of bases