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This is the teaching site of the West Side church of Christ in Fort Worth, TX. Unless otherwise indicated, all materials were written and prepared by Stan Cox

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In The News: Chess Eccentric Bobby Fischer Dies

ImageChess master Bobby Fischer, one of the greatest chess players in history, has died, a spokesman for the World Chess Federation confirmed to CNN Friday. He was 64.

No cause of death was given.

Fischer became the first American world chess champion when he defeated Boris Spassky of the Soviet Union in a legendary encounter during the Cold War in 1972.

Former Russian chess champion Garry Kasparov said Fischer would be remembered as “the pioneer, some would say the founder, of professional chess” and called his death “very sad news.”

According to media reports in Iceland, Fischer died at a hospital in the capital, Reykjavik. He moved to Iceland after being granted citizenship in 2005.

Fischer became almost as famous for his personality quirks and his renegade behavior as for his brilliance at chess.

He learned to play as a child in Brooklyn, New York, and quickly became a prodigy. He was only 15 when he reached the level of grand master in August, 1958.

— CNN

Analysis:

Bobby Fischer is one in a long list of examples that establish the truthfulness of the wise man’s words in Ecclesiastes 2:17, “Therefore I hated life because the work that was done under the sun was distressing to me, for all is vanity and grasping for the wind.”

The life that Fischer lived was sufficiently significant that his death was reported world wide. His success in playing the game of chess was prodigious and noteworthy, but he was a failure as a man.

Bobby Fischer was an arrogant man, demanding and impatient with others. He clearly believed himself to be superior to others. He defined the worth of man by intelligence alone, and had little good to say of others.

He was a racist. He was an anti-Semite, despite that fact that his mother was Jewish. He was also paranoid. As reported in the same article:

In 2002, Atlantic magazine reported that during a Manila radio broadcast he described his enemies as “Jews, secret Jews, or CIA rats who work for the Jews.”

It is obvious that his success did not supply him lasting happiness. Instead, he lived his live in jealousy of others he thought to be inferior to himself, and he died a hateful, bitter man.

Regardless of what a man may accomplish while here on earth, this life is a failure if not lived for God. Remember the conclusion of the wise man, “Fear God and keep His commandments, For this is man’s all. 14 For God will bring every work into judgment, Including every secret thing, Whether good or evil” (Ecclesiastes 12:13b-14).