The 11 Quarterback Commandments

September 10, 2009 at 9:39 am | Posted in Quarterback Commandments | Leave a comment
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Just a few short days until the real beginning of football season! Bill Parcells is long gone, but his influence on star quarterback Tony Romo lingers. Below is a recap of Parcells’s 11 Quarterback Commandments, and the spiritual applications that go with them.

Commandment No. 1: Ignore other opinions – press or TV, agents or advisors, family or wives, friends or relatives, fans or hangers-on – on matters related to football. They don’t know what’s happening here.

Spiritual Application: The time to disregard the advice and influence of those who mean well is the second that they deviate from the Word of God as revealed in Scripture. The Word of God is not only where you should go FIRST to determine if what you are doing is right. It is also where you should go LAST. Wait upon the Lord to show you what to do, and then let Him be the one to give the final evaluation on whether you are doing it His way. (Isaiah 2:22; II Corinthians 10:5)

Quarterback Commandment No. 2: Clowns can’t run a huddle. Don’t forget to have fun, but don’t be the class clown. Clowns and leaders don’t mix. Clowns can’t run a huddle.

Spiritual Application: Christians are supposed to be Christ-like. We are supposed to act the way Jesus acted. There is no evidence in Scripture to indicate that Jesus was generally morose, pedantic, boring, overly austere, or just plain old “no fun to be around.” However, the instances of Jesus joking around are extremely rare in the Gospel record. We see Him angry (Matthew 21:12). We see Him grieved (Luke 13:34). We see Him challenging the status quo (Matthew 23:33). We see Him teaching the greatest and most valuable truths ever taught. We even see Him crying (John 11:35). Whether we are running a prayer huddle, a Sunday School class huddle, a family worship huddle, or a Biblical counseling huddle, let us remember that “Clowns for Christ” is an oxymoronic idea.

Quarterback Commandment No. 3: Fat Quarterbacks can’t avoid the rush. A quarterback throws with his legs more than his arm. Squat and run.

Spiritual Application: Just as a quarterback must stay in shape physically in order to perform well, Christian ministers must always be striving to condition ourselves spiritually. (II Timothy 4:2; I Peter 3:15; Proverbs 10:26; Hebrews 12:1; Philippians 3:19)

Quarterback Commandment No. 4: Know your job cold. This is not a game without errors: Keep yours to a minimum. Study.

Spiritual Application: “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” (II Thessalonians 2:15) Just as mistakes will inevitably occur during the heat of battle on the gridiron, so a Christian will, more often than he likes, fall into sin. (I John 1:10) Realizing this fact should not make a Christian complacent about the inevitability of sin. It should make him more determined than ever to know his job cold – to know where temptation lies, and to know the escape routes that God has made to avoid it. (I Corinthians 10:11-13)

Quarterback Commandment No. 5: Know your own players: Who’s fast? Who can catch? Who needs encouragement? Be precise. Know your opponent.

Spiritual Application: “And we beseech you, brethren, to know them which labour among you, and are over you in the Lord, and admonish you; And to esteem them very highly in love for their work’s sake. And be at peace among yourselves.” (I Thessalonians 5:12-13) Christian ministers are exhorted to be familiar with their brothers and sisters in Christ – especially the ones they minister together with on a regular basis. The Bible says that fellow-Christian laborers are to know each other, to esteem each other (which means to treat each other as very valuable), and to be at peace with each other.

Quarterback Commandment No. 6: Be the same guy every day – in condition, preparing to lead, studying your plan. A coach can’t prepare you for every eventuality. Prepare yourself and remember, impulse decisions usually equal mistakes.

Spiritual Application: Christian ministers, like good quarterbacks, need to be consistent, insistent, persistent, and resistant. (I Thessalonians 2:9-12) Christian quarterbacks must lead. Leading involves both training and trusting.

Quarterback Commandment No. 7: Throwing the ball away is a good play. Sacks, interceptions, and fumbles are bad plays. Protect against those.

Spiritual application: Christian ministers must learn to avoid strife over non-essential issues which will ultimately hurt the cause of Christ. (II Timothy 2:1; II Timothy 2:23; Titus 3:8-9; Matthew 12:19; Matthew 11:29; Matthew 10:14)

Quarterback Commandment No. 8: Learn to manage the game – personnel, play call, motions, ball handling, proper reads, accurate throws, play fakes. Clock. Clock. Clock. Don’t you ever lose track of the clock.

Spiritual Application: The life of a Christian quarterback involves much hectic multitasking, but we must not forget that we do not have a limitless amount of time to do the work of the Lord. (Ephesians 5:15-16; I Thessalonians 4:16-17; I Corinthians 15:52,58; I Thessalonians 5:2-4)

Quarterback Commandment No. 9: Get your team in the end zone. Passing stats and TD passes are not how you’re going to be judged. Your job is to get your team in the end zone and that is how you will be judged.

Spiritual Application: A Christian minister will be judged, not for how popular he is, and not for the number of followers, converts, or students he claims, but for his obedience to the Lord, and for how well he managed the resources God gave him. (Romans 14:10; II Corinthians 5:10; I Corinthians 3:13-15; Philippians 3:4-8)

Quarterback Commandment No. 10: Don’t panic. When all around you is in chaos, you must be the hand that steers the ship. If you have a panic button, so will everyone else. Our ship can’t have a panic button.

Spiritual Application: In the heat of spiritual battle, when things seem as though they are getting out of control, God’s leaders must be thermostats, not thermometers. A thermometer just reflects the temperature of a room. When things get hot, the mercury goes up. When things are cold and dead, the mercury dies down, too. I must instead ask God to make me a thermostat. A thermostat is not controlled by the temperature; it does the controlling. When I walk into a room of spiritually cold people, I need to warm things up in the Spirit of God. And when I walk into a room of hot-headed chaos or knee-knocking panic, I need be calm, and help to cool things down. (Deuteronomy 20:3; John 18:10-11; Acts 27:41-44)

Quarterback Commandment No. 11: Don’t be a celebrity quarterback. We don’t need any of those. We need battlefield commanders that are willing to fight it out, every day, every week, and every season, and lead their team to win after win after win.

Spiritual Application: Christian ministers are not to seek glory for themselves. The Christian life is a race and a battle and a pilgrimage, not a parade or an awards banquet. A Christian minister may be a leading soldier in the battle of the Christian life, but He still serves a Commander Who is over him. This Commander reminds us not to get ourselves enmeshed in this world’s false ideas of leadership, to the point where we forget to serve, and expect to be served. (I Thessalonians 2:2, 6; II Timothy 2:3-4)

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