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Caryatids Room
Roman art
Julio-Claudian Period
Late Antiquity
Gaul, Africa and Syria

Athlete's Head
MND 969

Sully Room 17, known as Caryatids
The head is encircled by a ribbon
which crowned the victors.
In 776 BCE at the time when Isaiah began
to prophesy, the Greeks inaugurated their
famous Olympic sporting events
in honor of Zeus.
The religious sacrifices and worship
of the flame were essential aspects
of these festivals, and a real social link
between politically divided  city-states.
The Hellenized Jews introduced them in Palestine. Priests neglected their duties to participate in these games. - 2 Maccabees 4:12-15 (King James Version)
The Roman games, with combat sports as their main discipline, were very different. They were dedicated to the god Saturn. Nothing surpassed them in brutality and cruelty.
Many Christians were killed by Nero
during these festivals. Tertullian explained
the position of the first Christians regarding
to these distractions, "Our language, our eyes and ears have nothing in common with the madness of the circus, with the immorality
of the theater, with the atrocities
of the arena." AR1
  Olympia stadium entrance     www.biblé

 Sport in the Bible, a support for teaching

No anathema is cast in the Scriptures upon sport or its practice. The apostles even used it to illustrate their teaching.
Sin’ in New Testament Greek comes from a Greek root

'to miss the target ( the goal )', as when launching

the javelin (Romans 3:9, NWT note).

Discobolos   G 111
Sully 1er Campana Room 43
Paul clearly thought at foot races when he wrote: "Do you not know that the runners in the stadium all run in the race, but only one wins the prize? Run so as to win." - 1 Corinthians 9:24. (The New American Bible, Revised Edition, 2011)
  "If anyone contends even in the games, he is not crowned unless he has contended according to the rules."
2 Timothy 2:5

  "For bodily training is

beneficial for a little."

1 Timothy 4:8

To be allowed to participate, you had to meet very stringent conditions. Anyone who violated the rules was disqualified. These details help us understand this remark: "An athlete cannot receive the winner's crown except by competing according to the rules" (2 Timothy 2:5, NABRE, 2011). Fluency is the reward of rigorous training AR2. This intensive training is implied in the sentence: "to those who through use have their perceptive powers trained to distinguish both right and wrong rules", literally ‘the sense organs have been exercised as a gymnast.‘ - Hebrews 5:14, NWT note.
Famous athlete who won thirteen times Olympic and Pythian games, Milo, as he became an old man, tried to split an oak tree with his hands half open, he could not remove the tree and was devoured by wolves, which the sculptor replaced by a lion .
Executed between 1671 and 1682 for King Louis XIV. Located in 1683 in the park of Versailles at the Entrance of the alley Royal, the Milo group has profoundly French sculpture.
Pierre PUGET Marseille, 1620
Milon of Croton     MR 2075

Carrara marble
Richelieu Court Puget

The Christian race is also a test of endurance.
At the foot races, athletes were naked,
and this promotes agility and freedom of movement.
This is Paul's thought:
" Let us also put off every weight [...],
and let us run with endurance the race that
is set before us, as we look intently at
the Chief Agent and Perfecter of our faith, Jesus. "  (Hebrews 12:1,2).
Red-figure cup G 92 Athlete
Sully 1er  Campana Room 46 window 13 
The Scriptures finally indicate the rightful place of " bodily training  (litt: exercise of a gymnast, Greek gummnasia) [which] is beneficial for a little [while] godly devotion is beneficial for all things, as it holds promise of the life now and that which is to come. " - 1 Timothy 4:8, NWT note


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