Divine Commodity: Discovering a Faith Beyond Consumer Christianity

  • Title: Divine Commodity: Discovering a Faith Beyond Consumer Christianity
  • Author: Skye Jethani
  • ISBN: 9780310283751
  • Page: 281
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Divine Commodity Discovering a Faith Beyond Consumer Christianity The challenge facing Christianity today is not a lack of motivation or resources but a failure of imagination A growing number of people are disturbed by the values exhibited by the contemporary chur
    The challenge facing Christianity today is not a lack of motivation or resources, but a failure of imagination A growing number of people are disturbed by the values exhibited by the contemporary church Worship has become entertainment, the church has become a shopping mall, and God has become a consumable product Many sense that something is wrong, but they cannot imagThe challenge facing Christianity today is not a lack of motivation or resources, but a failure of imagination A growing number of people are disturbed by the values exhibited by the contemporary church Worship has become entertainment, the church has become a shopping mall, and God has become a consumable product Many sense that something is wrong, but they cannot imagine an alternative way The Divine Commodity finally articulates what so many have been feeling and offers hope for the future of a post consumer Christianity Through Scripture, history, engaging narrative, and the inspiring art of Vincent van Gogh, The Divine Commodity explores spiritual practices that liberate our imaginations to live as Christ s people in a consumer culture opposed to the values of his kingdom Each chapter shows how our formation as consumers has distorted an element of our faith For example, the way churches have become corporations and how branding makes us focused on image than reality It then energizes an alternative vision for those seeking a meaningful faith Before we can hope to live differently, we must have our minds released from consumerism s grip and captivated once again by Christ.

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      Posted by:Skye Jethani
      Published :2019-06-23T16:22:37+00:00

    About Skye Jethani


    1. SKYE JETHANI is an author, speaker, consultant and ordained pastor He also serves as the co host of the popular Phil Vischer Podcast, a weekly show that blends astute cultural and theological insights with comical conversation He has been a sought after consultant for groups facing challenges at the intersection of faith and culture like The Lausanne Movement, The White House Office of Faith Based and Neighborhood Partnerships, and the Interfaith Youth Core Skye has authored three books, The Divine Commodity Discovering a Faith Beyond Consumer Christianity, WITH Reimagining the Way You Relate to God, and Futureville Skye and his wife Amanda have three children Zoe, Isaac, and Lucy and reside in Wheaton, IL.


    233 Comments


    1. I should probably actually note how I rate books here because though I only rated this *** I really enjoyed it for me my ratings are:* Didn't finish and wouldn't recommend (probably will never see this here)** Finished and didn't enjoy, would not recommend*** Finished and enjoyed mostly, would probably recommend to others with certain reservations**** Finished and highly enjoyed, would recommend with no reservations***** Finished, enjoyed, would recommend and will likely read again myself within [...]

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    2. An easy read book that will make you think about how our current pop culture and economic system have impacted our relationships and worship. Although you have an occasional hyperbole (Nike making profits from the death of a young man), Jethani's insights and logic paint a convincing argument for working to make the Church counter-cultural rather than going along with the culture.

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    3. Excellent bookwritten to be easily understood by a non-theologian like myselfengaging writing that kept me readingought-provoking, critical look at today's church without being judgmentallid foundation in ChristI've recommended it to all of our church leaders.

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    4. I knew this book would be good, Skye is an excellent analyst and writer. but I did not expect this to be beatiful. This is the best and most constructive response to christianity and consumerism that I have read.

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    5. When I started reading this book, I was convinced that I'd love every word, however, by the time it was finished, I found myself largely unsatisfied with the author's conclusions.On the positive, the book itself is a very enjoyable read. Jethani does a beautiful job blending together stories alongside the art and life of Vincent van Gogh. He also does an excellent job identifying the problem of our consumer culture and the damage that it's done to individual Christians as well as popular Christi [...]

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    6. I found this book in the bibliography of "The Prodigal Church" by Jared C. Wilson. Now having read it, I firmly believe that Wilson's book shamelessly raided "The Divine Commodity" for its best points and reasoning and repackaged it for its own use.Written by Skye Jethani, "The Divine Commodity" is an eloquent, literate, readable manifesto in which the author writes against trend of churching being treated as a business venture rather than as a religious fellowship.Jethani presents evidence that [...]

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    7. I thought this book had some fresh insights. There were a few areas where I thought he was a little critical. He talked about theater and other artistic licenses that are used in church which he saw as commercialism. However, he uses Van Gogh's art to paint beautiful imagery. It seemed like a contradiction to be able to use one medium of art and frown upon another in attempting to connect with God authentically. He also cast living in the suburbs as a product of being a consumer and that it caus [...]

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    8. Jethani has an excellent WORD for today's church. We are so consumer driven and he exposes it, even claiming that he, himself, is consumer oriented. His ability in expressing his deep thoughts on the matter is engaging and probing. In the epilogue he calls he church to disciplines like silence, prayer, fasting, love, hospitality, and friendship. This is a great wake-up call for those who seek to be followers of Jesus.

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    9. I love this book, on many levels. A wonderfully written book exposing how our current consumer culture has affected our relationships with each other, God, and our collective paradigm of Christianity. With a bonus parallel story woven in of Vincent Van Goghs spiritual journey and divine inspiration behind his works. Which certainly resonates with me, and I'm sure will with a lot of others. Great book!

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    10. Skye did an outstanding job in this book. He takes Scripture, weaves it with a story about the painter Van Gogh, and delineates for us how the Church is really missing the boat in today's society. He "paints his picture" and then brings his book to a very simple, eloquent conclusion. This is a must-read for Christians.

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    11. I read this book shortly after it came out, and then read it again over the last few months with some guys from my church. Below is a review from when I first read the book:In 'The Divine Commodity,' Skye Jethani analyzes the way that consumerism has creeped (and sometimes shoved) its way into the church. Rather than standing as a kingdom witness against the age, the church all too often has simply reflected the culture, accomodating Christian faith with commercialism and consumerism. This syncr [...]

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    12. Jethani has a way of making you think, of really challenging your conceived notions of church and God. I read With earlier in the year (on the recommendation of a friend) which introduced me to his work. I was looking forward to reading The Divine Commodity because of it. I found it engaging, and meaningful, and oddly similar to Henri Nouwen's The Return of the Prodigal Son (his use of Van Gogh reminded me of Nouwen's use of Rembrandt.)Interestingly, I've read a few other books that focus on how [...]

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    13. Before you even read the book you have to say it’s pretty encouraging that it even exists. Not long ago a book on consumerism from a mainstream American publisher was a rare thing indeed, there still aren’t many in existence and this one deserves to be near the top of the pile.In nine chapters Jethani unpacks how consumerism has leaked into the church. American is at the forefront of a consumer society, its leading edges are all in America and American Christianity is at the forefront of con [...]

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    14. I just finished Skye Jethani's book The Divine Commodity and found it to be both fresh and convicting in diagnosing much of the state of contemporary Christianity. One of the main characters in his book is the Dutch artist Vincent van Gogh. Jethani does an excellent job telling the story of the modern church through the works and life van Gogh. Here are a few excerpts from the book that really struck me.On the church's idolatrous focus of creating a consumer experience: "Ministries that focus on [...]

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    15. Using his words, "My secret is that I want to be relevant and popular. I want my desires fulfilled and pain minimized. I want a manageable relationship with an institution rather than messy relationships with real people. I want to be transformed into the image of Christ by showing up at entertaining events rather than throguh the hard work of discipline. I want to wear my faith on my sleeve and not look at the darkness in my heart. And above all, I want a controllable god. I want a divine commo [...]

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    16. This book has kept me thinking for weeks, and I have shared its basic tenets with friends, sparking some lively discussions.It is the first book I have read dealing with the issue of the "consumer" mentality of post-modern America and how it has infiltrated our churches. Do you remember the old Burger King T.V. commercial that jingled about having your hamburger "your way?" Many churches cater to the mentality that we are consumers, and "church" is something to be sold. They lure its members by [...]

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    17. There is something wrong with the American Church. Many authors in recent years have tried to identify the issue and offer a solution, but all too often their assessments seem to be found wanting. Jethani shows us here why this is so. He identifies these "problems" for what they really are, symptoms. By recognizing that many of the various issues that are currently crippling the American church are in fact tied together by a common source problem, he provides with a much more robust and compelli [...]

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    18. This book is really less about Faith and more about the history of Vincent VanGoh. The first two or three chapters does connect with the theme of faith beyond consumer christianity, after that it just became repetitive and boring. It was a very interesting read and did force me to stop and think several times about the message intended. I had to put this book down several times and walk away just to absorb the message. I learned a lot about Vincent VanGoh and his life, and can even see the conne [...]

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    19. An interesting, enjoyable blend of biography (of Vincent van Gogh) and critique (of contemporary church strategies). Jethani's observation of consumerism's grip on the church is accurate (bigger = better, branding the church, felt needs over missional service, customization versus community, etc), but his proposed remedies (silence, prayer, fasting, love, hospitality, and friendship) - though good and needed in their own right - don't seem to match the magnitude of the problem.If you've read any [...]

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    20. Jethani approaches the topic of consumerism in the church from an insider. His judgment is tempered by his own realization of he own shortcomings and his own consumerist desires. This is refreshing and challenging. Refreshing, because Jethani doesn't presume to have this all figured out and perfect; challenging because I am compelled to look beyond the speck of consumerism in the eye of the church and look at the log of consumerism in my own eye.Jethani identifies the issues of consumerism in th [...]

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    21. While at points his book felt a bit rigid, Jethani's humble appraisal of his own struggle against being a part of the problem while still seeking a solution, and the very interesting and parallel struggle of van Gogh, gained my full attention.What solves the problem of the "commodified" church culture? Jethani provides multiple examples of individuals, including Christ, whose lives are "counter-commodity" and whose examples serve to remind me that ministry is life-on-life, one person at a time. [...]

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    22. As a pastor, I can't help but see what Skye is talking about on a daily basis. The mentality of most churchgoers is based on what meets their needs. It has little to do with meeting God's intentions. The genius of this book is it makes us think--whether or not we agree with it, we think. We struggle with it, and a book that makes one struggle is rare. He gives history and meaning to a reality many of us have felt uneasily but not been able to name. However, refusing to give in to complete pessim [...]

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    23. I recommend the book. I'll give it one more star than John Wilson gave it in his Book Notes column for Christianity Today. My feeling on it is that it is either a great introduction to the problems of "consumer Christianity" (Jethani's term) or an excellent refresher with some new insights. Especially helpful is that Jethan has been so close to issues of consumer Christianity, as a pastor and as managing editor of Leadership Journal. If you have at all an interest in the health of evangelical Ch [...]

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    24. If you've ever wondered why some North American Christians don't really seem to act like Christ this book may give you a significant clue. It will also help you understand why consumerism is so toxic to the work of Christ and the church. It is not, however, a book of easy answers. Perhaps simple in some regards, but by no means easy to do. Hopefully it will help wake you up to all that is going on in our culture today.

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    25. The author gets a little dramatic in the epilogue, but this is well-researched, compelling reading for anyone struggling with institutional church. He writes it on a personal level-how the gospel of Christ relates to the individual-rather than inspiring grandiose measures. He focuses on the fact that more than another Christian product, we need actual people crazy enough to deny self and obey Christ. For that reason I can safely recommend it to anyone.

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    26. Full review at bookwi/the-divine-commodityShort review: This is a book to argue with. There is something that will offend just about every Christian, but a lot of really good points. Obviously I don't agree with all the conclusions, but I think it is a great book for wrestling through how we as Christians interact in culture.

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    27. Some thoughts about God and Christians and what it means to be in relationship with both that I had already been considering/experiencing in my life, so not super new to me but very well-written. Thoughtful (and thought-provoking) observations. I very much enjoy hearing his commentary on life and news as a co-host on the Phil Vischer podcast.

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    28. Skye does a good job on the juxtaposition of comments about today's church with the brief biographical comments on Van Gough. I enjoy his insights and observations - I first listened to him as one of the co-hosts on the Phil Vischer podcast. (Unabashed plug here.) I would highly recommend for anyone who catches their self in a consumer church mindset.

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    29. If you can get past the early "negativity" you will get to some really insightful comments. The book is helpful if you are willing to set your defensiveness aside and allow the words to penetrate and the image in the mirror to become clear. I'll be using sections of the latter part of the book in some upcoming material I'm presenting.

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    30. This was a great book that provided a very honest and in depth look at the reality of consumerism in our culture and the effect that this is having on the Church. This book is not a list of how to's or a new strategy to being to avoid these pitfalls. Rather, the author simply bring the reader back to the most important things, hospitality, imagination, creativity, the great commission, and love.

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