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Super Bowl advertising announced

Dr. Jim Denison is a cultural apologist who helps people respond biblically and redemptively to the vital issues of our day. He is also the co-founder and Chief Vision Officer of the Denison Forum, a Dallas-based nonprofit that comments on current issues through a biblical lens.

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The five Dallas Cowboys Vince Lombardi Super Bowl trophies (Credit: Brandi Korte via Flickr)

The NFL playoffs haven’t yet begun, but the Super Bowl of advertising is already kicking off.  CBS has announced that it will charge $3.8 million per 30-second slot, a new record.  It expects to post an all-time high in ad revenues for the game.  Three ads will exceed one minute in length, and there will be several one-minute ads.

Coca-Cola and VW have each planned 60-second spots.  Coke will also run a 30-second ad, and will expand its social and mobile presence.  Last year’s most popular ads were a Bud Light commercial featuring a dog that caters a party, and a customer-created Doritos ad starring a hungry pug dog.

At the same time that companies are spending record amounts on Super Bowl advertising, millions of Americans remain out of work.  Experts say that part-time jobs are the new way to get the attention of full-time employers; a second language is more valuable than ever before; a kind personality is distinctive in a tech-driven world; since there’s no perfect job, nearly any job is better than no job.

I am returning today from Israel, where it was my privilege to lead another study tour of the Holy Land.  As part of our itinerary, we visited the Mount of Beatitudes, where I recited the Sermon on the Mount.  One of my favorite parts of Jesus’ most famous message is this invitation: “Consider how the lilies grow.  They do not labor or spin.  Yet I tell you, not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these” (Matthew 6:28-29).  He likely pointed to lilies growing in the fields around him as he spoke these words.

His hearers would remember that King Solomon “was greater in riches and wisdom than all the other kings of the earth” (1 Kings 10:23),” yet the beauty of his man-made garments could not compare with the splendor of God’s creation.  Then Jesus made his point: “If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today, and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, how much more will he clothe you, O you of little faith!” (Matthew 6:30).

Whether you’re CEO of a Super Bowl advertiser or someone hoping to find a job, God knows what you need even before you ask him (Matthew 6:8).  So give him your financial fears for this new year, knowing that the Owner of all that exists is your Father.

Alexander the Great left instructions that he was to be buried with his hands outside his casket, to show the world that its conqueror’s hands were empty.  However, its Creator’s hands are full.