February 3, 2011
John 3:16 Ad Won't Air During Super Bowl
Fox Sports rejects commercial because it contains 'religious doctrine'
A year ago, we were blogging about the controversy surrounding the Tim Tebow pro-life ad that was to air during the Super Bowl. (It ended up airing anyway, and there were far fewer complaints after it aired than before it -- scandal averted!)
Now we have another minor commercial controversy brewing. Fixed Point Foundation reports that Fox Sports has rejected a proposed Super Bowl ad featuring a reference to the Bible verse John 3:16 -- ironic since it has been showing up in the background on signs at sporting events for decades.
In the commercial (embedded below), Fixed Point -- whose stated mission is "to promote a confident Christianity in the public square by fortifying the minds of Christians and challenging the faith of skeptics" -- hoped to encourage viewers to look up John 3:16 and consider its meaning. The commercial directs viewers to a website (lookup316.com) with the verse and explanation. Neither the commercial nor the website sells a product or asks for money, but Fox supposedly rejected the commercial because it contains "religious doctrine."
Still, some regions have opted to air the commercial anyway; a Fox station in Birmingham has agreed to air it twice during the big game. Here it is:
And here's the Tebow ad from last year's Super Bowl: