Marketing the church is hot. For many church leaders, marketing might even be the first article of their creed, which goes something like this: "We believe that our church determines its identity and mission through the tactics of marketing strategies." Theologians Kenneson and Street offer a thoughtful and provocative protest, with a foreword from Stanley Hauerwas. The authors "expose the theological presuppositions that inform the marketing project. . . and help us to see that the marketer's presumption that form can be separated from content of the gospel betrays an understanding of the gospel that cannot help betraying the gift that is Christ."
The authors propose an alternative, constructive account of the church's mission and purpose that is "not based on exchange of value but on reminding us that the gospel is always a gift - a gift that makes impossible any presumptions that there can be an exchange between human beings and God that is rooted in the satisfaction of our untrained needs." The cross and resurrection challenge the world's understanding of what our needs should be.