Original Research

A critical analysis of the social implications of gospel merchandising among Nigerian Christians today

Benjamin Diara, Michael E. Mokwenye
HTS Teologiese Studies / Theological Studies | Vol 75, No 1 | a5391 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/hts.v75i1.5391 | © 2019 Benjamin Diara; Michael E. Mokwenye | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 28 January 2019 | Published: 19 August 2019

About the author(s)

Benjamin Diara, Department of Religion and Cultural Studies, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria; and, Department of New Testament and Related Literature, Faculty of Theology, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, Nigeria
Michael E. Mokwenye, Department of Religion and Cultural Studies, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria; and, Department of New Testament and Related Literature, Faculty of Theology, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, Nigeria


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Abstract

This article critically analyses the social implications of gospel merchandising among Nigerian Christians today. The research method adopted for the work is the qualitative phenomenological approach. Clerics of different Christian denominations in the country have maximised the opportunity of mass patronage from citizens seeking solutions to their spiritual, social and economic problems to merchandise the gospel and the associated religious elements. How this religious development affects the Nigerian society is the task that this article tackles. The article discovered that gospel merchandising has had both positive and negative implications for the society. Whilst the phenomenon has provided opportunity for competitive propagation of the gospel in the Nigerian society as well as employment for the unemployed, especially the youths, it is observed that the same phenomenon has affected the society negatively by encouraging the gangrenous social sickness known as corruption and by influencing the general trend of diabolism and immorality in the society. The study recommends, among other things, that the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) should cooperate with the government so that its war against corruption could be carried into the church as it has been observed that the unwholesome phenomenon is also endemic in the church in no small measure.

Keywords

Gospel merchandising; Gospel; Merchandising; Nigeria; Christians; Materialism

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