The Christian Marketing Extravaganza, better known as the Christian Booksellers Association Annual Convention, is always a sight to behold. Acres of stalls laid out in neat rows, all shimmering with product—crosses, posters, books, t-shirts, CDs, paintings, you name it. Meanwhile, salespeople scurry, trying to convince bookstore owners to put their product on shelves this fall. It is a discomforting mix of capitalism and Christianity, but not so discomforting that anyone seriously entertains the idea of overturning tables and driving people out of the convention center.
The fact is that the convention also contains a healthy dose of Darwinism. Many of the products so often mocked by CBA critics are also ignored by bookstore owners. Therefore, many budding Christian entrepreneurs walk away from CBA seeking God's new direction for their life. But a few products are introduced each year that may do what they are intended to do: further the cause of Christ. Rather than mock the soon-to-be extinct, I'll mention two that struck me as interesting. Whether they are marketable, I have no idea.
The Amazing Bible Poster caught my eye as I walked by the Staff Vision Productions booth. The 24x36-inch poster featured a simple black cross on a gray background. The contrast with the glistening silver crosses I'd just passed and the glossy, full-color posters nearby was striking. A salesman handed me a magnifier and told me to look closer. The gray background, it turned out, was the text of the Bible. The entire Bible, printed so small that it can be read only with a magnifier—and even then it's pretty darn small!
To be sure, this is nothing compared to the recent publishing of the entire New Testament ...1