Tag Archive for: Superbowl

Jesus: Get him?

Armodoxy for Today: Get Jesus?

Are you going to tune into the Superbowl this Sunday? If you’ll be watching on TV you’ll have an advantage over those attending the game, because the head of our Church will have a commercial spot during one of the breaks.

The Super Bowl is an event unparalleled in the United States. It attracts a wide variety of people to an annual display of athletics and dramatics. Much more than a football game, the Super Bowl has become a phenomenon with its high-priced tickets and astronomical advertising fees. Let’s get the statistics out of the way first. The average price of a ticket is about $9,000, the stadium holds 65,000+ people, the cost of advertising is $7,000,000 for 30 seconds (yes, that’s a half-a-minute) of airtime, and an estimated 113,000,000 people will view the game on TV and live streams.

The theatrics of the Super Bowl are not limited only to the half-time-show. Actors and celebrities are commissioned to sell everything from alcoholic drinks to food products, from invisible wireless services to very visible luxury vehicles. Of course, it’s all calculated on the returns. If an advertiser is going to spend $7Million for 30 seconds, be sure that they’ve calculated the return will be many times over. That’s good business and has been the business of Super Bowl advertising, until now.

The product? Jesus!

Last year, a Christian website, He Gets Us, set up a beautifully orchestrated campaign of pictures and sayings of Jesus to bring the point home that He gets us! And there’s a good chance they’re going to do it again this year. On a week where Jesus is celebrated by the actions of the warrior and the priest, Saints Vartan and Leon, these commercials make it clear that Jesus is alive and well and talking to the world today. And people are listening! I know because last year, immediately after the ad aired, both sides of the political spectrum – the left and the right – criticized the advertising of Jesus in this manner. Yes, just as he did 2000 years ago, so too now, Jesus is shaking up the establishment.

So they spent $20Million on a minute-and-a-half of advertising and what is their return? In proclaiming that Jesus “Gets us” the purpose (or the calculated return) is to challenge us to “Get Him!”

This coming Sunday is Super Sunday, not because two football teams will carry, throw and kick a football from one side of the field to the other. It’s Super Sunday because God loved us so much that he wanted to get us and so He sent His very best, His only Begotten Son. This Sunday is the “Day of Good Living” followed by the Lenten Season which begins on Monday. Lent is about how we “Get Him.” Yes, God understands us. Yes, “Jesus gets us.” Now the challenge is ours: do we get Him?

The forty-day period of Lent begins with an invitation to “Get Him.” The Armodox practice of abstaining from animal products in our diet and increasing our time in private prayer and acts of charity sets us on a course to meet the Resurrected Lord, at Easter and to take Him with us into our lives. In other words, 40 days of Lent prepares and arms for the 325 days of the year that follow. Get it? If you do, then you’ll be challenged to “Get Him.”

Let us pray, “Lord, I thank you for hearing my prayer and understanding me. As I prepare for the Lenten Season, open my heart to Your love, so that I may grow spiritually, to hear your answers and how Your Word touches my life every day. In Your name, Jesus, I pray. Amen”

Cover: 2023 Luna & Gregory Beylerian

The Water Ad

Armodoxy for Today: The Super Bowl Ad you missed

This week before the beginning of Great Lent starts with a passage from the Gospel of St. John, where Jesus says, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.” (Luke 7:37-38)

Jesus’ offer is unique in that He is a fountain from which we can quench our thirst, but He also empowers us, so that “living water” flows from us.

Think about this as a product. There are many brands of designer waters these days, some touting special pH levels that can bring about health benefits. Other brands are locale based, with treats from Arrowhead, the Alps and even Iceland. And all carry hefty price-tags in comparison to the similar looking stuff that comes out of the kitchen faucet. Now, think about the “Living Water” described by Jesus: A water that quenches thirst and then empowers you with “rivers” of flowing water. How much would that be worth?

The Sunday on which this passage of scripture is read in the Armenian Church often coincides with Super Bowl Sunday. If ever there was a market for the thirst-quenching drinks, the Super Bowl audience seems to fit the bill. In 2023, the average cost for advertising on the Super Bowl was $7Million a half a minute! And companies that advertise on the Super Bowl have the financials figured out, that is, if they’re going to buy a 30 second spot on the Super Bowl for $7Million, be assured that they are assured that sales will offset the cost of advertising. How many bottles of beers must be sold to pay off a half-a-minute ad? How many soft drinks must be sold to cover the bill of advertising? Whatever the number, we know that these companies are not losing money. They are investing in their product, as they should. It is a product they believe in, “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also,” says Jesus in the Sermon on the Mount.

The challenge before us today is to invest in the drink from the living fountain that will give living water. The investment is with your most precious commodity, you! Read the passage of the day again (John 7:37-39). Jesus offers to quench our thirst and to empower us as a source for Living Water. As we unravel this week with its messages of saints and sacraments, we prepare ourselves for the beginning of the Great Lent season. It is a time of spiritual growth and Christian living. I’m asking you to buy the product. You will taste and know the difference because it quenches thirst like nothing else.

Let us pray, “Fountain of immortality, help me to grow in your love. I come willingly to drink from you. I thirst and I have heard your call. Accept me as I am. I am on the journey of life and seek the water you offer. Amen.”

Cover photo: Lake Van, 2019 Fr. Vazken