Adversity score ∙

Let us run with endurance the race that is set before us. – Hebrews 12:1

1 Corinthians 9:24-27

 24 Don’t you realize that in a race, everyone runs, but only one person gets the prize? So run to win!

 25 All athletes are disciplined in their training. They do it to win a prize that will fade away, but we do it for an eternal prize.

 26 So I run with purpose in every step. I am not just shadowboxing.

 27 I discipline my body like an athlete, training it to do what it should.

How much do hardship and adversity affect the outcome? What are some practical ways of dealing with adversity?

In May 2019, the College Board announced that in addition to a student’s SAT score, colleges may now consider a student’s “Overall Disadvantage Level” or their “Adversity Score.”

What is the SAT Adversity Score?

The SAT Adversity Score is a number that the College Board calculates to quantify the disadvantages a student has faced. The Adversity Score is on a scale of 1 to 100, with 100 denoting the least hardship and 0 indicating the highest hardship.

The logic here is that drastic differences in SAT scores between test takers are not based solely on ability, knowledge, and intelligence. The test takers’ adversity score and their advantages or disadvantages influence SAT scores.

What? That’s right.

Using an Adversity Score along with an SAT score aims to even the playing field.

If you had it tough growing up, that explains the lower scores. It is not about proficiency, aptitude, or problem-solving skills. Striving students with high adversity and hardship growing up should get a break, a leg up regarding college admission.

What are valid predictors of academic ability? There are many. At the top of the ladder are leadership, character, and persistence. The Adversity Scores of Asian students and the economic status of their families do not seem to influence their academic achievement significantly. Instead, their emphasis on scholarly effort and self-discipline is a very significant factor. Indeed, Asian students, on average, outscore white students on the SAT by 100 points; they outscore black students by 277 points.

In The Republic, Plato spoke of “the Noble Lie.” The Noble Lie is told to the masses to keep them under control and happy with their situation in life and maintain social stability.

The Noble Lie is that all children are equal. But in fact, the Greek rulers believed that some children were gold, others silver, and still others iron. These metals determine a person’s station in life.

The Noble Lie is just that, a lie, a myth, a prevarication. It is knowingly propagated by the privileged elite to maintain social harmony and advance their agenda.


What is the entrance requirement for heaven? There is only one: the blood of Christ. Adversity Scores do not play a role! It is objective and final.

Father it is so easy to judge people and think less or more of them based upon some arbitrary standard. Help me to remember that everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard (Romans 3:23).


There is a tremendous difference in age between a potential college student, a teenager, and a fully grown man in his 30s. Recognizing the adversity that the Lord Jesus Christ faced and how He overcame it is most instructive. What disadvantages did He face, and how did He respond?

When on earth, the Lord Jesus Christ lived by faith and suffered much adversity. He had a humble birth. He grew up in a blue-collar family. His childhood was marked by insinuations regarding the legitimacy of His birth. The Lord Jesus Christ was rejected, betrayed, mocked, beaten, despised, and ultimately broken and killed. That was real adversity, not imagined adversity.

If you calculated the Adversity Score of the Lord Jesus Christ, what would it be?

Isaiah 52:14 But many were amazed when they saw him. His face was so disfigured he seemed hardly human, and from his appearance, one would scarcely know he was a man.

Isaiah 53:2-10

 2 My servant grew up in the LORD’s presence like a tender green shoot, like a root in dry ground. There was nothing beautiful or majestic about his appearance, nothing to attract us to him.

 3 He was despised and rejected– a man of sorrows, acquainted with deepest grief. We turned our backs on him and looked the other way. He was despised, and we did not care.

 4 Yet it was our weaknesses he carried; it was our sorrows that weighed him down. And we thought his troubles were a punishment from God, a punishment for his own sins!

 5 But he was pierced for our rebellion, crushed for our sins. He was beaten so we could be whole. He was whipped so we could be healed.

 7 He was oppressed and treated harshly, yet he never said a word. He was led like a lamb to the slaughter. And as a sheep is silent before the shearers, he did not open his mouth.

 8 Unjustly condemned, he was led away. No one cared that he died without descendants, that his life was cut short in midstream. But he was struck down for the rebellion of my people.

 10 But it was the LORD’s good plan to crush him and cause him grief. Yet when his life is made an offering for sin, he will have many descendants. He will enjoy a long life, and the LORD’s good plan will prosper in his hands.

The Lord Jesus Christ triumphed because of His persistence and absolute commitment to the highest calling of all, fulfilling the will and purpose of the Father. He is a perfect example for us to follow.

Hebrews 12:1-3

 1 Let us also lay aside every weight and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us,

 2 looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.

 3 Consider him who endured from sinners such hostility against himself, so that you may not grow weary or fainthearted.

¯\_()_/¯ 11-13-2

© Dr. H 2023

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