Jesus Industry

We would like to open a conversation on what you think about the world creating an industry to market Jesus. 

In a recent post, Cindy responded, 

Should anything pertaining to following Jesus be an industry? Should it be pursued for profit? This is a very big question for me right now, and it extends beyond music into preaching, writing, manufacturing, etc.

Whether we agree with it or not we have made Jesus a commercial product, selling it at Lifeway’s, and other Christian retailers around the world.

We have asked this question before, What is different of the Jesus Industry, than any other industry? 

Are all products that are created right in God’s eyes? Many Churches market sermons, and other resources, and sell them for hefty fees. We guess you could call it commercializing God’s word. 

Where do Christians need to draw the line? We have to recognize that some of the products we see at the local Christian Bookstore are just ridiculous. Try to imagine what it would look life if Jesus actually walked into a Christian Bookstore. 

We think it would be funny to see his reaction.

What are your thoughts?

Team IML


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6 responses to “Jesus Industry

  1. It’s possible that his reaction would be similar to his encounter with the money-changers in the temple in Mark 11. It wouldn’t surprise me if that was the case.

  2. I could see that fruits of the spirit lamp getting broken…I agree with Rob, I think it would be a similar encounter.

  3. The commercialization of Jesus is firmly rooted and grounded in Existentialism’s take over of the American church. Existentialism–in its purest form–simply says: Existence proceeds essence. In other words, what you do and what you have…determine who you are. Nothing could be further from the Jesus Christ of Nazareth found in the New Testament. What He did proceeded out of a fully grounded knowledge of who He was. That is so clearly demonstrated in the temptations of Jesus in the wilderness. When Satan suggest that “if you are the Son of God” then turn these stones into bread…he was asking for existence (the miracle) FIRST in order to acknowledge Christ’s essential essence. Jesus deflected Satan’s attempt to compromise him by pointing back the Word of God.

    In today’s church world the church is on a constant hunt for that “doing” or “having” that will present to the world a relevant essential essence. If our Jesus marketing leaves us feeling a bit slimy–the answer is not slicker marketing, but a renewal of the Church.

  4. The last I knew Jesus Christ (or variations on his name) should be used as a noun and not an adjective.

    Agreed with the previous comments. When Jesus becomes “big business” we are in trouble with a capitol T. Is there such a thing as “christian” hamburgers, insurance, cars, etc.?

    What so many people are trying to do by “christianizing” their business is taking a short cut. I will put christian on my logo or marketing material rather than doing the hard work of being a christian in the market place. A christian who does business of any kind will develop a reputation for fairness, quality, service etc….but it takes time. Let your actions speak for your business, not your “marketing”. For the purpose of this response I consider church inclusive not exlusive of the arguement…maybe even the greatest offenders of using god for a profit!

  5. I agree with all of you. 2 thoughts here

    1. They will know we are Christians BY OUR LOVE!!

    2. and as far as the christian sermons, books, or literature that includes scripture, I think upon the scripture :
    “It is true that some preach Christ out of envy and rivalry, but others out of goodwill. The latter do so in love, knowing that I am put here for the defence of the gospel. The former preach Christ out of selfish ambition, not sincerely, supposing that they can stir up trouble for me while I am in chains. But what does it matter? The important thing is that in every way, whether from false motives or true, Christ is preached. And because of this I rejoice. Yes, and I will continue to rejoice.” Philippians 1:15-18

  6. I really don’t think having a Christian industry is evil or bad.

    The moneychangers were cheating people. That’s why Jesus was angry. And Jesus told the parable of the talents, where the people who made the profit were rewarded.

    Jesus doesn’t need to be “marketed.” The Holy Spirit convicts people that He is real and that He loves them.

    However, the Christian industry can take two forms: 1) to build up the saints, and 2) to show people Christ. (Outside of these, it might get iffy) If the product (books, music, jewelry, sermons, whatever) does these, then why is it a problem? People can’t do all these things to the full extent for free. A pastor is paid by the church to preach. Is that bad? Likewise, if I pay you for a product that might reach the lost, is it not worth it?

    Just a few thoughts.

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