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'He Gets Us': Theological and Ethical Concerns of the 2024 Super Bowl Ad



Above video credit: He Gets Us


The 2024 Super Bowl ad "He Gets Us" has garnered widespread attention for its portrayal of divine understanding and empathy. However, beneath the surface, lies a complex tapestry of theological and ethical implications. This blog post seeks to deconstruct the ad's messaging, highlighting its potential dangers both doctrinally and ethically, particularly in its portrayal of trauma, such as abortion, and its impact on survivors.


Theological Concerns


The ad's portrayal of divine understanding can be problematic from a theological standpoint. While it's true that God empathizes with human suffering (Hebrews 4:15), the ad's depiction may inadvertently suggest a reductive view of God's sovereignty and holiness. The idea that God merely "gets us" risks diminishing His transcendence and elevating human experiences above divine authority.


Facts

  • Jesus did wash feet. They were the feet of His disciples. (John 13:12-14). Washing of feet was a discipleship tool set within a cultural contextual framework.

  • Not all people are God's children (John 3:8, 8:32; Romans 9:8, Ephesians 2:1-3, James 4:4, 1 John 3:10, etc.), but all humans are image bearers of a divine Creator (Genesis 1:26, Colossians 1:16).

  • He didn't teach hate, but He did teach righteous judgment and careful discernment which were to be applied to all aspect of life, even in the counseling of others (Daniel 12:3, Psalm 94:15, Proverbs 18:5, John 7:24, Romans 2:5, 2 Thessalonians 1:5, etc.).

  • Jesus moved towards the outcasts but not to permit their sin, but radically change their psyche toward repentance and save their soul (Luke 5:32, John 16:8, 2 Peter 3:9,


Distorted Theodicy:


The ad's focus on empathy may inadvertently perpetuate a distorted theodicy—a theological explanation for the existence of evil. By emphasizing divine understanding without addressing the complexities of sin and redemption, the ad presents a skewed perspective on suffering. This oversimplification risks undermining the profound mystery of God's justice and mercy.


Detriment to Survivors of Trauma


While the ad aims to foster empathy, its portrayal of trauma, particularly in the context of abortion, can be deeply troubling for survivors. By presenting abortion as a mere backdrop for divine understanding, the ad trivializes the complex realities faced by those who have experienced abortion. Survivors may feel overlooked or invalidated, further deepening their emotional wounds.


Ethical Concerns


The ad's simplistic portrayal of trauma, combined with its commercialized messaging, raises ethical concerns. By using sensitive topics such as abortion for commercial gain, the ad risks exploiting survivors' experiences for profit. This commercialization of trauma trivializes the lived realities of survivors and contributes to a culture of commodification and sensationalism.


Promoting Healing and Empathy


As Christians, it's essential to approach discussions of trauma with sensitivity, humility, and a commitment to promoting healing and empathy. Rather than reducing God to a mere empathizer, we must uphold the fullness of His character—holiness, justice, and love. By engaging in thoughtful dialogue and offering genuine compassion, we can create spaces that honor survivors' experiences and foster genuine healing.


Conclusion


The 2024 Super Bowl ad "He Gets Us" presents complex theological and ethical challenges, particularly in its portrayal of divine understanding and trauma, such as abortion. As Christians, we must critically engage with cultural narratives while upholding the integrity of our faith and the dignity of survivors. May this reflection spur deeper conversations and a commitment to genuine empathy, healing, and justice.


The Super Bowl Ad that should have been aired:






Above video credit: CBN News

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