Wednesday, January 07, 2009


Cool Jesus
Originally uploaded by isc_luis_herrera

I have the key to reaching the world for Jesus: We ride the popularity wave of the iPod, iPhone and iTouch and market a reinvented iJesus.

The traditional Jesus is as dated as 8-track tapes. In today's world, even CDs are being replaced by mp3s. We need a Savior who is technologically savvy.

We've been doing cross-marketing for years, what with the John 3:16 guy in the end zone and athletes thanking Jesus for helping them to be successful. We just need to be more diligent. Maybe we could buy the naming rights to Wrigley Field. How does Jesus Saves Stadium sound?

Of course, we'll have to update our logo. The cross is iconic, but overdone. We need a fresh, new twist. Even Pepsi has updated their logo.

We need a cool Jesus, one that will boost consumer confidence and turn around our economy.

If this sounds like a good idea, head over to and read Jesus Is Not a Brand by Tyler Wigg-Stevenson. Here are a few quotes:

When it's just you and Jesus, you (the consumer) "invite him" (the product) "into your heart" (brand adoption) and "get saved" (consumer gratification).

If you feel like a used-car salesman talking about Jesus, the solution to the perceived lack of authenticity isn't a smoother pitch—it's a renewal of the church.

In a consumerist society, my identity comes from what I consume.

Spiritual consumers, therefore, will approach the church with the same narcissism they bring to other brands. What am I expressing about myself if I buy Brand Jesus? How will Christianity fulfill my vision for me?

Preaching and evangelism that focus on the benefits of becoming a Christian present a message not fundamentally different from commercial advertising about the existential benefits of this car or that soap.

We live in neighborhoods of single-family homes populated by people like us, go to church with people like us, consume media targeted at people like us, and shop with people like us. All of this makes us more reluctant to inhabit a world with people who are not like us.

If we treat the gospel like a commodity, can we fault nonbelievers for thinking that the cross is just another logo?

Spiritual consumers will come to Christianity as do window shoppers at a mall, wanting a spirituality tailor-made to their preferences.

Tyler focuses on evangelism, but consumerism is deeply embedded in North-American Christianity. It won't be long until we have Consumer Reports reviewing churches and rating the programs that they offer.

Pastor Rod


Keith Drury said...

your posts are always are any comments you male..thanks for being so thoughtful Rod!

Pastor Rod said...

Thanks for the kind words, Keith.

Anonymous said...

Interesting ideas. I fully agree that as christians living in this changing world filled with crazy new technologies that we need to use them to reach the lost. I may be misunderstanding you, but can you really reinvent the Son of God? Call me old fashioned, but I believe the bible holds the key to everything we need for "men fishing."

It does not matter how we package a "benefits gospel," as it is written "For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing" (1 Corinthians 1:18). No matter if we tell people God will do this for you, God will do that for you, it will still seem like foolishness to a perishing person.

I believe the real key here is written in Psalm 19:7. "The law of the Lord is perfect, reviving the soul." If we take the time to explain to people that they have (as well as ourselves) broken God's law. Breaking any one of the ten commandments constitutes eternal punishment. Once people realize they are helpless because of their sin, then the Good News of Jesus paying their price will truly be Good News!

Like I said earlier, I completely agree that we ought to be using all of these new technologies to help spread the good news. I agree we shouldn't get stuck in the past and live in "lala land christianity."

Thanks for the blog post!


Miss Bethany said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Miss Bethany said...

[Feel free not to post my comment but]
someone didn't get the sarcasm and stopped reading after the first few paragraphs...

I agree 100%: consumer evangelism makes me feel sick.

Anonymous said...

I don't get this.

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