I am loving my former professor's book, The Courage to Be Protestant. If you want to understand today's "evangelical" landscape, Dr. Wells is a trusty tour guide. Here are some of his thoughts as to the fraud and failure of the "marketing" - "seeker" philosophy of the church:
First, the needs consumers have are needs they identify for themselves. The needs sinners have are needs God identifies for us, and the way we see our needs is rather different from the way he sees them. We suppress the truth about God, holding it down in "unrighteousness" (Rom. 1.18). We are not subject to his moral law and in our fallenness are incapable of being obedient to it (Rom. 8.7), so how likely is it, outside of the intervention of God through the Holy Sprit, that we will identifiy our needs as those arising from our rebellion against God? No, the product we will seek naturally will not be the gospel. It will be a therapy of some kind, a technique for life, perhaps a way of connecting more deeply with our own spiritual selves on our own terms, terms that require no repentance and no redemption. It will not be the gospel. The gospel cannot be a product that the church sells because there are no consumers for it. When we find consumers, we will find that what they are interested in buying, on their own terms, is not the gospel.Furthermore, when we buy a product, we buy it for our use. When we accept Christ, he is not there for our use but we are there for his service. We commit ourselves to him in a way that we do not commit ourselves to any product. There is a world of difference between the Lord of Glory, the incarnate second person of the Godhead, and a Lexus, a vacation home, or a trip to the Bahamas. The marketing analogy blurs all of this, reducing Christ simply to a product we buy to satisfy all our needs.