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    The Pagan Roots of
    the Olympic Games

    Why Believers Should Have Nothing to Do With Them
    by Phyllis Petty

    In just a few weeks worldwide attention will be drawn to the 2002 Salt Lake City Winter Olympic Games. They will dominate television, and millions of people will spend countless hours watching and cheering for their favorite athlete and country. What patriotic fun and rivalry! But, wait a minute!

    Have you noticed the recent occult nature of the opening and closing ceremonies? Have you ever taken notice of the different rituals -- the flame, the torch and its relay, the flag, the motto, the oath, the medals, the new mascot, Izzy -- and wondered what they all mean? Believe me, it is not all innocent entertainment. Can you remember how Mohammed Ali ascended the stage with the torch in his hand and finally was able to light the flame? Read on, and I think you will agree that we have been unknowingly deceived into celebrating and worshipping a Greek god. And since 1960 television has made it available to the whole world.


    The ancient Olympic Games were primarily a part of a religious festival in honor of Zeus, the chief deity of the Greek gods and goddesses. The festival and the games were held in Olympia, Greece, located near the sanctuary of Zeus. The sanctuary was named after Mt. Olympus, the highest mountain in mainland Greece. This sanctuary was one of the Seven Wonders of the ancient world and housed a 45-foot high ivory and gold statute of Zeus. It was elliptical in shape and consisted of an elevated base approached by steps (Deut. 7:5). From the base rose a large mound made of the ashes of the thighs of victims (usually bulls or oxen) sacrificed to Zeus. The whole height of the altar was 22 feet. The idea was that the gods were present at the festival and took delight in the various contests and exercises.

    The objective of the games is to unite the world in a common sporting event, all ignorantly paying homage to the unknown "spirit" with offerings and worship. All the nations and athletes are unknowingly participating in pagan rituals that have been used to worship Zeus. Paganism and pagan gods are receiving credibility especially through the opening and closing ceremonies.

    From a very young age, children all over the world devote their lives to their respective sport so that they can compete. In China, potential young children are actually taken from their parents and trained by the government. The parents are allowed to see them only two times a year. These games have become the "god" of all these athletes. Little do they know that this god is Zeus.


    The first recorded ancient Olympic Games began in the year 776 BC and were held in Olympia every four years for almost twelve centuries. The first thirteen Olympic festivals hosted only one 600-foot race. Additional events were gradually added and by the fifth century the religious festival consisted of five days. The first day was devoted to religious sacrifices and rituals to Zeus, taking the oath, and the registration of athletes. On the fifth day prizes were awarded and thanksgiving sacrifices were offered to Zeus.

    The only award in the ancient games was an olive wreath. The olive branch was cut with a gold knife. The Greeks believed that the vitality of the sacred tree was transmitted to the recipient through the branch. There were also other unofficial prizes awarded by city/state (i.e. tax-exempt status).

    As was their custom, the Spartans introduced nudity to the Olympic Games in 720 AD. Nudity was common for male contestants to show off their "perfect" bodies.

    Women were not allowed to attend because the games were dedicated to Zeus, and the sanctuary of Zeus was a sacred area for men only. Women were allowed to participate in an alternative sport festival that honored the goddess Hera, the wife and sister of Zeus. This separate festival in honor of Hera, included fast races for unmarried girls. Every four years the victors could dedicate images (probably paintings) in groves to commemorate their victories, thus enabling them to take part in the sacrifice of cows in honor of Hera.

    After the 293rd Olympics in 393 AD in a single edict, Holy Roman Emperor Theodosius, fearful of the continuing popularity of these pagan festivals, abolished the games. They were banned because of their pagan rituals held in the honor of the supreme Greek god Zeus. Paganism ultimately destroyed the moral fabric of ancient Greece.


    In 1894 a Frenchman named Baron Pierre de Coubertin promoted the reborn Olympics as "a new civil religion, replete with symbols, traditions, rites and ceremonies." It was in the same year that the International Athletic Congress was formed in Paris and later became known as the International Olympic Committee. This Congress gave tribute to the Greek god Apollo (god of purification) by singing the "Hymn to Apollo." As a result, after 1503 years of absence, the first modern Olympics were held in Athens, Greece in 1896.

    Women were first allowed to participate in the 1900 Paris games. Even today, the equestrian events are the only ones where men and women compete as equals.

    In order to accommodate TV networks and audiences, starting with the 1994 Lillehammer games, it was decided that every other year would be an Olympic year, alternating with summer and winter games.

    Flag/Logo/Rings: Introduced in 1908, the modern Olympic flag consists of five linked colored rings on a white background. According to Lew White (Fossilized Customs, p. 47), these rings represent the five original planetary deities worshipped in Babylon. They also represent the five participating continents: Red: America; Green, Australia; Black, Africa; Yellow, Asia; Blue, Europe. Every nation of the world has one of these colors in its flag. The rings are joined together as a sign of unity in nationhood. These occult rings are flashed across the television screen during all events.

    Olympic Oath: Introduced in 1920, it says:

    "In the name of all competitors, I promise that we shall take part in these Olympic games, respecting and abiding by the rules that govern them, in the true spirit of sportsmanship, for the glory of sport and the honor our teams." Officials also have to take an oath while holding a corner of the Olympic flag; one official from the host country repeats a similar oath on behalf of all officials. However, this oath, no matter how good it may seem, is not to Yahweh, the Elohim of Abraham, Issac and Jacob, but to the Greek God, Zeus (Deut. 6:13).

    Medals: Starting in 1896 silver was awarded the first place winner, and from 1904 gold draws the first prize. Since 1928 gold medals have had the same design: Greek goddess, Olympic rings, coliseum of ancient Athens, a Greek vase, a horse drawn chariot, the year, number of the Olympiad and the host city. Each host city can then add to the front and also design the back of the medal. (Deut.7:25).

    Eternal Flame: The original flame burned continually on the altar of the goddess Hera (Zeus' wife). Introduced in the 1928 Amsterdam games, it represents purity, endeavor for perfection, struggle for victory, and "peace and friendship." It also symbolizes "the light of spirit, knowledge, and life."

    The lighting of the flame parallels the ritual performed by vestal virgins in the ancient altar to Hera in Olympia, Greece.

    Torch: The torch was first introduced in the 1932 Los Angeles games. It was lit from the sun-rays at Olympia, Greece, and stayed lit until the games were completed. (There was no torch or relay in the ancient games.)

    Torch Relay: The torch relay was first instituted at the 1936 Berlin games.

    The original torch is lit at Olympia, Greece, and then carried by relay to the host city. At the host city an altar dedicated to Zeus is lit with this torch. The last runner carries the torch into the Olympic stadium during the opening ceremony. The flame is then lit from the torch and will remain lit until it is extinguished during closing ceremony. The torch relay symbolizes the passing of Olympic traditions from ancient games to modern games, from one generation to another (thereby carrying with it all its pagan customs and curses).

    The flame ignited in Olympia is kept in a lantern that travels with the relay. The lantern is closely guarded to ensure the flame is never extinguished. A single torch is lit from the flame every morning for that days relay.

    Mascot: For the 1996 Atlanta games Izzy, the blue mascot was introduced. Izzy is a magical teenage character who lives in the World of the Olympic Torch. To some he is seen as an inflated worm with the extremities of a lizard. To others he is seen as a goodwill ambassador for the world or as a keeper of the flame. A mystical elder appeared to tell Izzy about a long forgotten magical power. "If you can find five rings hidden in the torch, you will gain this power and the knowledge to leave. It will be a dangerous quest, but you will have a special spirit to guide you. Even so you must hurry. You can only leave the torch in the magical year, the 100th year of the Olympic Games, and only in the city whose greatness arose from the flames, the city of the mystical Phoenix, the city of Atlanta." Izzy appeared in the souvenir program wearing five different colored magic rings, the same colors of the Olympic flag circles. When studying symbology, the symbol for fire is a circle. The circle also has great significance in Masonic and other cults.

    While today's contestants may be running for their country, they are unknowingly honoring Zeus, represented by quasi-religious elements in today's Olympics: the lighting of the Olympic flame, the torch relay, the Olympic oath that all athletes and officials take in unison, the procession of countries that opens and closes the games. These were all part of the pagan rituals of the ancient games, which were banned because of their paganism and threat to society.


    Anti-Semitism has touched the modern Olympics. During the 1936 Berlin games, Hitler barred Jewish athletes from competing for Germany. During the 1972 Munich games, eleven Israeli athletes were shot and killed.

    1964 Innsbruck, Austria: Young Greek maidens lit the Olympic flame at the sacred altar of Hera in Athens, Greece. Olympic rings were engraved at the Greek altar site just below the sacred flame. A pagan fire ritual was performed as a flame was kindled from the sun's rays. A torch lit from the flame was carried by a series of runners to the winter games at Innsbruck.

    1994 Norway, winter games: Trolls, which are nature demons, were spotlighted in opening and closing ceremonies accompanied with strange-sounding music.

    1996 Atlanta: Giving historical homage to Zeus, a portable silhouette temple with 50-foot pillars was erected for the opening ceremonies (Deut.7:5). A high priestess was also there to cast her silhouette in front of the ceremonial lights. Five majestically dressed individuals were slowly elevated in the stands wearing pagan-looking gold sun disc masks. They introduced the five Olympic colors representing the five continents. NBC announced, "And now the five Olympic spirits awaken calling forth the rebirth of the modern games." The background music was an eerie sounding guttural chant, and with this hypnotic music the needed magical atmosphere was set in place for the revival of the old pagan Olympic gods. The majestic music reinforced the pagan element. During the closing ceremony, the pagan Aborigines were also given center stage in the stadium. The Aborigines are well known for primitive occult magic, nature worship and polytheism. Aborigines have a strong magical tradition, believing they can communicate with the sacred being, the sky gods, and the spirits of the dead. The Aboriginal sorcerer is called a "kaditcha man."

    1998 Nagano, Japan: A Buddhist temple formed the backdrop for the games.

    2002 Salt Lake City, Utah winter games: From the ancient Mount Olympus, home of the Greek gods, to Salt Lake City's Mt. Olympus, the Olympic Games may have come full circle. The ancient games began as part of a religious festival, and in 2002 they will play out in Utah, a land founded as a religious sanctuary [for Mormonism].

    2006 Torino, Italy: Its logo will include the illustration of a church that houses the famous Shroud of Turin, believed to bear the imprint of the face of Jesus.


    It is ironic that the site of Olympia, Greece, which was chosen for its strategic position, should be destroyed by natural forces peculiar to its locality. In the fourth century two massive earthquakes tore the sanctuary apart, toppling the columns and shattering walls. A river burst its banks, destroying almost half the gymnasium, and never returned to its former course. Eventually the entire site was covered with silt to a depth of thirteen feet. Quite a fitting ending to what honored Zeus, the pagan weather god.

    Will someone like the Holy Roman Emperor Theodosius rise to the occasion and ban these pagan/occult games, or do we have to wait until Yahweh destroys us through acts of nature or through our enemies?

    We may not realize it, but in today's games we recreate, with surprising accuracy, the climate and circumstances surrounding the ancient games. Human traditions may appear innocent, but if their origins can be traced to ancient paganism, and their present-day practices continue in that paganism, then they are abominations to Yahweh and strictly forbidden.

    Worshipping idols and foreign gods is in direct disobedience to the First and Second Commandments (Exodus 20:1-6). Willful disobedience to Yahweh and any of His commandments is obedience to Satan and will bring curses upon the offender. Attendance at these games dishonors Yahweh, the one true Elohim.

    Viewing them on television, with all their occult trappings, could bring an abomination into your house, along with curses (Deut. 7:26; 12:2).

    After learning about the occult roots and the current occult practices in today's games, I pray that every reader will agree that the Olympic Games should no longer be attended or viewed on television by any observant believer. We are held responsible for what we know, and now we know that they are an abomination to Yahweh, the Elohim of Abraham, Issac and Jacob.

    Yahweh is in the process of purifying His Bride and taking out all the spots and wrinkles known as "paganism." (See book, Who Is the Bride of Christ? by Eddie Chumney). May we be worthy of being counted as part of His remnant by walking in His truth, righteousness, and holiness. Shalom.

    -Encyclopedia Americana
    -Encyclopedia Britannica

    -Rives, Richard, Too Long in the Sun
    -Stack, Peggy Fletcher, Holy Games: the
    -Olympics are Rooted in Religion, HOLY GAMES, ,Salt Lake City Tribune, Saturday, February 3, 2001
    -University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archeology and Anthropology,
    -The Real Story of the ancient Olympic Games
    -White, Lew, Fossilized Customs, 2000

    Courtesy of Phyllis Petty, 50-855 Washington Ave., C-130,
    La Quinta, CA 92253, USA. Email: [email protected]

    This page was created on 18 January 2002
    Last updated on 18 January 2002

    Reproduced with Thanks