Georgians vie for ‘American Bible Challenge’ fan favorite

Even King Solomon in all his wisdom might have a hard time voting for “The American Bible Challenge” fan favorite.

The game show, which airs at 9 p.m. Thursdays on GSN, tests contestants’ knowledge of the Bible in a fun way. Two Georgia teams — the City Takers and the Redeemed Rednecks — are vying for the fan-favorite title against 16 other teams, including white-clad members of the Dominican Sisters of Mary religious order, Christian wrestlers, rabbis and God-loving cowboys.

The winning team will walk away with $10,000 to donate to the charity of its choice.

"It's huge," said Scott "Free" Ballauf, director of City Takers. "We'll be able to reach more urban youth with the Gospel of Jesus Christ."

City Takers is a group of self-described “urban missionaries” who hope to spread more positive messages to young people in Atlanta through its charity Freestyle Missions, which does mission work and mentoring to urban youths and young adults. The other members who competed on the game show were Ronnie “Double” Rolon and Tim “Enlitement” Igidi.

If they win, they hope to expand the program.

“There are so many issues that young people are facing,” said Ballauf, a hip-hop artist originally from Miami who now lives in Marietta. Unfortunately, the messages they receive are not always positive, he said.

“People are looking up to these rappers who are feeding them messages of get rich, money, drugs and women,” he said. “They don’t have any real men in their lives personally, and they’re looking up to these rappers. We want to give them an alternative.”

The addition of a fan-favorite contest this year was a way to make GSN's popular "The American Bible Challenge" more interactive, said Alpharetta-based comedian Jeff Foxworthy, who serves as the show's host. Every team that played during the season is in the running for fan favorite. Viewers have until midnight May 19 to vote, and the fan favorite will be announced during the show's finale on May 23.

The limit is one vote per person, per day.

The Redeemed Rednecks’ members include Mike Redman, a seminary professor; Rachel Stubbs, a music teacher; and Jeremiah Redman, a recent Georgia Tech environmental engineering graduate. They hope to donate the winnings to the Burning Bush Youth and Family Intervention Center in Jackson, which helps struggling youths and families.

“Certainly, we can muster some votes here and there,” said Jeremiah Redman, who said he was pleased to see so many other groups across the country following the teachings of Christ.

For both groups, one of the highlights was meeting Foxworthy, who was also host of another popular TV game show, “Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader?”

The comedian and talk show host “really encouraged us,” said City Takers’ Ballauf. “He said, ‘I know the church doesn’t understand basically what you guys are doing as a whole.’ Sometimes, they don’t understand what he is doing using the platform of comedy. He said to keep doing what we are doing and that God would open many doors for us.”

At first, Foxworthy, who is known for his “redneck humor,” said he wasn’t too keen on hosting a game show based on the Bible. He was warned by his wife that he might catch flak from people of faith. And he didn’t fancy an afterlife in hell for doing the show. But the show works and the comedian now thinks that God would give it a holy thumbs-up.

“If you believe God breathes his attributes into us, one is laughter and the other is joy,” he said. “One thing Christians are guilty of is that we don’t know how to have fun. We don’t know how to have joy. We get so serious.”

He said he hopes the show will dispel some stereotypes about what a Christian looks like. The show included a tattoo artist, an NFL punter, a Christian romance author and a truck driver.

To vote for fan favorite:

Go to: www.gsntv.com

Want to take a look at the Georgia teams?

City Takers

Explorehttp://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=D_rCmjcPxUg

Redeemed Rednecks

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=bvy_PSaiHas

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