Can a Christian Work In Sales?

The Bible presents a view of life that, in all humility and honesty, I don’t see many Christians honestly grappling with, let alone applying.

In more honest humility, I do not grapple and apply nearly as often as I should. But even in my pathetic efforts to grapple and apply, I feel awful lonely and misunderstood, letting me know that either

  1. I’m totally wrong-headed, or
  2. Most others are missing the point

I used to be willing to admit either, but I am also humbly and honestly leaning toward point 2. I’ve been around the church a while now and I’ve studied the Bible for quite some time. I think the majority of professed Christians have no clue what the New Testament is actually driving at.

Here is one example.

Most Christians would agree that there are certain professions that are not consistent with Christian principles. However, even in trying to make a list of these professions, I know professed Christians who are thus occupied.

I was going to say Bartender, but alas, few Christians have a problem with alcohol, slightly more have a problem with frequenting bars, and slightly more think bar tending is wrong.

I could use doctors-who-perform-abortions as a profession Christians would agree was wrong. But alas, even here, more professed Christians have no problem with abortion.

So, Crack Whore seems like solid ground. I have yet to meet a Christian who thinks being a Crack Whore is a godly profession (although I’m sure there are one or two who would prove me wrong).

Crack Whoredom is right out.

But let me throw out a profession that bothers me. It’s a profession I tried. It’s a profession that many pastors think defines their job. It is the profession of salesman.

Anything to do with trying to sell people stuff seems problematic if you get a whiff of New Testament morality. Salesmen, marketers, advertisers, etc. They are all in the boat of getting people to spend money.

Most of this involves convincing people who don’t need something that they do indeed need it. Most marketing plays on covetousness, which is idolatry. Commercials try to convince you of your NEED for the object for sale.

Neighbors will look longingly at your possession. Hot women will wrap their arms about you. Your sad face is replaced by happy face. All you have to do is buy our product and life will be full!

Marketing is lies. We don’t even pay attention to most ads any more because we know they aren’t telling the truth. We know we’re not really getting what is advertised.

Marketing is largely lying in an effort to get people to covet. Causing your brother to stumble, to make him get something he previously didn’t think he needed to get, has to be a sin.

I tried sales for a while and I couldn’t do it. I made no money and quit after a month. I wrote a book. I can’t sell it. I will never be a best-selling author because I can’t sell. I don’t advertise my church. This is an area of my life where I cannot see how I can pull it off and still provide things honest in the sight of all men.

I can’t. Maybe you can. I don’t know.

What I do know is that I see very few, if any, Christians even thinking about this. Most upon reading this, will think I am being stupid. But alas, if you soak yourself in New Testament thinking, many irrelevant areas of life will suddenly take on new relevancy. Many previously OK activities will now cause you a problem.

I am not telling you to quit your marketing or sales job. I am suggesting that we examine our faith in light of the dangers of money, possessions, and mammon that the New Testament so clearly points out.

I have a feeling there are many professions that are impossible for a true Christian to do besides Crack Whore.

7 thoughts on “Can a Christian Work In Sales?”

  1. I admire what you try to do, live what you read in the Bible. That being said, I heard from a former pastor of mine that when pastors leave their profession, a significant number become car salesmen because they already have the skills.

    Thanks for being different. (I wonder what would happen if we all read and understood the Bible literally without any other authority and then did what it says?)

  2. I tried to sell cable tv for a little while. I was a failure as I found the covetousness to be the main focus. Further, we were taught to focus on poor areas as they tended to be easier to sign up. Why? Because they covet more what they can’t get. In the end, I left the job because I knew it was not for me to appeal to people’s sinful flesh.

  3. I’m in agreement with you. I could never do sales unless it was something people really did need.

    Re: Your book. I have a copy and think it’s great, but am not surprised it’s not selling so much. “Who has believed our report?” You’re in good company with people like Isaiah and Jesus.

    But why isn’t it available in Kindle format also? I could help you with that.

  4. I sent you an email about that…hope you got it. It was sent to the email you listed for the “Book Review” offer.

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