World Cup? Or the Cup won for the World?

World Cup. A momentous worldwide event that happens once every four years. An event that draws people of diverse age, culture, race and gender to come together because of a common pursuit. A love for soccer. 

We all started with our favorite team in the World Cup and we studied the statistics of each player in the team. We watched highlights and replays of their goals, fouls, misses and we either cheered or screamed at them. As quarter-finals became semi-finals and semi-finals to final, and our “favorite” team dropped off the list of competitors, we shifted our attention to the final two teams; France and Croatia competed for that coveted trophy. France emerged victorious and won the World Cup. 

We gathered in communities to watch the finale – churches, neighbourhood community centres, friends’ homes and even at void decks. And for that moment, we were united in our love for soccer. For that brief moment, we were one body and then it’s gone, till the next World Cup in 2022.

A momentous worldwide event also happened thousands of years ago. An event that drew people of diverse age, culture, race and gender to come together because of a particular pursuit. The love of God. 

For the first time, God entered history as a man, as Jesus Christ, who lived, died, and rose   for the sins of man. 

It started with many different players – Herod the Great, John the Baptist, Pontius Pilate, Judas Iscariot, Caiaphas, Jesus Christ, etc. The masses were studying every action of these players and were either cheering or screaming at them. As the final day drew close, they were left with the final two “teams” – Christ and Death. Christ proved to be victorious and won the “World Cup”.

Unlike the World Cup 2018 that France won, Christ will never lose this “World Cup”, for this “Cup” of thanksgiving was won in exchange for the cup He drank at Gethsemane (1 Cor 10:16; cf. Matt 26:39). He drank so that all of us can drink from this cup of thanksgiving – a new covenant in His blood – in remembrance of God’s love and our love for Him. 

We are all united as one body… not for a brief moment but for eternity, in fellowship with God, in Christ Jesus, through the Holy Spirit.

Daniel Gan