To 12, or Not to 12?

February 2, 2015 at 8:00 pm (General, Uncategorized) (, , , , , , , , )

12th Man Flag on the Space Needle.

Photograph 12th Man Flag on the SpaceNeedle by Tracie Howe on 500px

So I’ve been hearing a great deal of Seahawks censure lately, ranging from a chastisement of Christians making the 12 an idol all the way to anger over “bandwagonners” (those fair-weather fans who only don the 12th man persona when the Seahawks make the championships).

Seattle has lately become known for the #12 fanaticism, contrary to the rest of Seattle’s “hipster” reputation. Even in the wake of the Super Bowl loss you’ll see signs like “|3elieve” and “I’ll always be a 12.” Sports can have an amazing way of unifying a group of people. So, is there anything wrong with being “a 12?”

I’m guessing it will come down to your definition of the 12th man. If it means you wrap up your identity around the success or failure of this particular team, perhaps it does more harm than good. If it means cheering on the Seahawks whenever they play and being a good sport whether they win or lose, probably no harm no foul, right?

What do you think? Write it in the comments! Here is some food for thought on the subject:

1 Corinthians 9:24-27 Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one receives the prize? So run that you may obtain it. Every athlete exercises self-control in all things. They do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable. So I do not run aimlessly; I do not box as one beating the air. But I discipline my body and keep it under control, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified.

1 Corinthians 9:19-23 For though I am free from all, I have made myself a servant to all, that I might win more of them. To the Jews I became as a Jew, in order to win Jews. To those under the law I became as one under the law (though not being myself under the law) that I might win those under the law. To those outside the law I became as one outside the law (not being outside the law of God but under the law of Christ) that I might win those outside the law. To the weak I became weak, that I might win the weak. I have become all things to all people, that by all means I might save some. I do it all for the sake of the gospel, that I may share with them in its blessings.

1 Peter 4:2-4 …so as to live for the rest of the time in the flesh no longer for human passions but for the will of God. For the time that is past suffices for doing what the Gentiles want to do, living in sensuality, passions, drunkenness, orgies, drinking parties, and lawless idolatry. With respect to this they are surprised when you do not join them in the same flood of debauchery.

1 Timothy 4:7-8 Have nothing to do with irreverent, silly myths. Rather train yourself for godliness; for while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come.

Ecclesiastes 9:7-9 Go, eat your bread with joy, and drink your wine with a merry heart, for God has already approved what you do. Let your garments be always white. Let not oil be lacking on your head. Enjoy life with the wife whom you love, all the days of your vain[a] life that he has given you under the sun, because that is your portion in life and in your toil at which you toil under the sun.



  1. Mary said,

    I’ve been pondering this phenomenon of whole cities rallying around a sport’s team and why that happens. Is there some other kind of need within us that we are seeking to fulfill? Of course, there are the very real inspirational needs such as seeing someone or a team use hard work and perseverance to accomplish a goal. But there seems to be something deeper than that, something that has been alluded to by videos of fans and that is the need for some kind of a communal experience. A rallying point, a commonality between people. It made me think of the Body of Christ and the ultimate fulfillment of that in heaven when we will all be united in Christ with him as the center and us all in communion with him and with each other. As Christ prays in the Garden, “May they be one as we are one.” So I wonder if what we see taking place around the Seahawks is a desire for people seeking that oneness with each other and someone greater, namely, Christ, that can only be imperfectly fulfilled here on earth and perfectly in the after life. I also wonder if the cheering with thousands of other people for something greater than oneself is not an attempt to fulfill the desire for communal worship and in imitation of the throne room of God. Anyway, just some thoughts in my head as I ponder the 12’s and why they have come together the way that they have.

    • haywireproductions said,

      Mary, that’s exactly the kind of pondering that inspired this post. I was thinking along very similar lines. :~]

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