Christian Bookstores: An Essay by Elizabeth Price

Christian Bookstores: An Essay
by Elizabeth Price
April 18, 2011

To begin, as in every business endeavor the location of a Christian bookstore is crucial to the resulting crowd it draws in. Christian bookstores are quite often in suburban, upper middle class areas that support well to do citizens, the only audience that can afford such a place. There is nothing wrong in that but because it is also the same location chosen by churches it seems to be a proverbial doctor to the well. Is it not the sick who need one? And yet the business is not taken there but instead left where bookstore owners can and will make a pretty penny, storing up treasures on earth.
Secondly, Christian bookstores carry the name of Christ but none of his attributes. The shelves are lined with nearly anything with a surface that can fit a Bible verse and self-help books authored by Christian impostors, literature that cleverly composes a neat concoction of Christian buzz words and borderline word vomit from the media’s secular philosophy. Is seems as if believers have become so saturated by secularism that all they can do is build competing stores full of merchandise differing only by it’s Christan brand name. Such blatant hypocrisy from the same people that claim Matthew 5:15 as gospel truth is simple sickening, for their own baskets are painted with clever references to pop culture in a cross shaped emblem. Consequently, I find the contents of Christian bookstores unprofitable for the kingdom of God.
Perhaps a paragraph on the atmosphere of Christian bookstores is not needed, for there seems to be nothing outstanding about it from the rest of the world. And here you find its greatest weakness. Nothing sets them apart from the money-hungry, tolerance embracing, philosophy that drives everyone else. They have lost the beauty of Christ’s example of being in the wold but far from of it. What would drive a person to become like us when we are just like them?
Now we have looked at Christian bookstores in light of their general location, contents, and atmosphere to determine if they are a profitable investment for the kingdom of God. Unless the gospel is equivalent to a ninety-nine cent bumper sticker reading, "Jesus loves the hell out of you," I say they are everything but. I simply ask a Christian bookstore to the rest of the world, well, what’s in a name? A store with any other would sell as sweet.

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