The Preacher as Pitchman

I have no respect for the kind of preaching that confuses selling with persuasion, sales pitches with preaching the Gospel.
—Ben Patterson

Ahair salon in Minneapolis ran an advertisement recently that pictured Albert Einstein with the caption: "A bad haircut can make anybody look dumb!"

The now-deceased genius has appeared in a number of ads this year. Usually, however, he is seen promoting such high-tech products as computers and software. Apparently some ad agencies consider Einstein a universally accepted symbol of intellectual brilliance and technical mastery, the kinds of things we consumers hope to get a piece of in the purchase. Their rationale is simple, almost self-evident: If they can connect in our minds what he stands for with what they want to sell us, we can be persuaded to buy their products.

Gospel Pitchmen?

Persuade. Isn't that what we Christian preachers hope to do to people in regard to the Gospel? It may sound crass, but in the final analysis aren't we all in the business ...

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