Pastor goes viral for video urging repentance amid backlash to 'He Gets Us' Super Bowl ad

By The Christian Post |
Jamie Bambrick
Jamie Bambrick | YouTube Screenshot

A pastor in the United Kingdom went viral after he posted a video emphasizing repentance in response to the controversial "He Gets Us" Super Bowl ad that many suggested was endorsing sin.

Jamie Bambrick, who serves as associate pastor of Hope Church Craigavon in Northern Ireland, told The Christian Post that he was shocked by the overwhelming international response to his video, which took him less than an hour to make by himself and has racked up more than 2 million views on X.

"It's been a little bit crazy, I'm going to be honest," said Bambrick, who also makes occasional YouTube videos about theological and cultural topics. "I've not gone viral anywhere near this level before. It's been good, but incredibly positive and incredibly well-received, which has been a real blessing."

Bambrick said his video was a response to the 60-second Super Bowl ad from the "He Gets Us" campaign, which describes itself as an effort to remind people of "the example that Jesus set while inviting all to explore his teachings so we can all follow his example of confounding, unconditional love."

The "He Gets Us" ad, which was titled "Foot Washing," featured a slideshow of people washing other people's feet. Some high-profile Evangelicals took issue with the apparent undertone of some of the images, which included left-wing protesters, a priest washing the feet of an apparent homosexual, and a woman washing the feet of a younger woman outside an abortion clinic while pro-life protesters in the background ignored them.

The ad concluded by emblazoning the on-screen message: "Jesus didn't teach hate. He washed feet. He gets us. All of us."

Andrew Walker, an ethics and public theology professor at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, said in an X post that the commercial had "a leftward tinge, communicating the respectability of certain sins over others in our culture (although I’m not sure the ad even communicated that the respectable sins were sins at all)."

Bambrick told CP that his video intentionally echoed the style of the "He Gets Us" ad in an effort to draw a sharp contrast to its apparent implications while providing "hopefully a much better message." His video features portraits of Christians who have prominent testimonies regarding how they turned away from a sinful lifestyle.

The slideshow in Bambrick's video includes Kat Von D, a tattoo artist and TV personality who became a Christian after renouncing witchcraft; Josh Timonen, who became a Christian after helping atheist Richard Dawkins write a book against God; John Bruchalski, an abortionist turned OB/GYN; and Steven Bancarz, who repented of New Age practices.

Other portraits include former jihadist Mohamad Faridi, former KKK member Mike Burden, former drag queen and prostitute Kevin Whitt, former porn star Brittni De La Mora, former gang leader Sebastian Stakset, former drug addict Jeff Durbin, former trans-identifying woman Laura Perry, and former lesbian activist Rosaria Butterfield.

The ad concludes with the message: "Jesus doesn't just get us. He saves us. He transforms us. He cleanses us. He restores us. He forgives us. He heals us. He delivers us. He redeems us. He loves us. Such were some of you."

"I think a lot of Bible-believing Christians viewed [the 'He Get Us' ad] and went, 'You know what, this just isn't a reflection of the Gospel, and it's not a reflection of our heart toward the lost, either,'" Bambrick said. "It seemed to be almost a condemnation of Bible-believing Christians. That was the implication that I think a reasonable person would have gotten from watching it."

Bambrick believes the ad was implying that "if the Church calls people to repentance, if the Church calls people to turn from sin, that is preaching hate, which of course it isn't."

"That is an act of love, it's an act of grace," he said.

He said he hopes his video shows "the heart of Jesus" and reflects the love Christians have for those who remain enslaved to their sins.

"My experience with most Christians is that we actually love those who are in sin, but we love them enough to want to see them set free from their sin," he said. "We love them enough that we want to see them delivered and brought to newness of life in Christ; to turn from their sin and be saved from it — both obviously from the eternal consequences of sin, but also in this life, how much better it is to walk with Jesus."

Bambrick said he's been encouraged that many of the comments that inundated his video were from Christians sharing their own testimonies regarding how the Lord changed them.

"I think that has brought people back to something, just the core of the Gospel and reflecting on their own testimonies, as well," he said. "Glorious to see, to be honest — really, really cool that a little short video has been able to do that for a lot of people."

Originally published by The Christian Post