Rick Warren — Problem? or Problem Solver?

This morning, for five ot ten minutes, Fox and Friends featured Rick Warren, famous Pastor of Saddleback Church and author of “The Purpose Driven Life.” This was obviously a promotion for Rick’s special on FoxNews one day soon.

I don’t particularly like to pick on a fellow “Pastor” but I must.

Warren announced that he is launching a “network” of churches and church people to “change the world.” His ambitious plans are to include five billion church people throughout the world to give the people of the world a “purpose.” He says he wants to include all churches, synagogues and religions.

Striking to me was the complete absence and avoidance of the words “Christ” or “Jesus.” That is quite an omission for a supposed minister of Jesus Christ. What else are we to conclude except that his message is one of a “social gospel” or a philosophy of social redemption. Such is not a Biblical message.

We see a 2000 year old Biblical warning about such philosophies in the verse, Colossians. 2:8 “Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.”

The Apostle John spoke of those who would substitute man’s philosophy for the message of Salvation in Christ by God’s Grace in 1 John 4:5 “They are of the world: therefore speak they of the world, and the world heareth them.”

The world is still in the same condition as it was 2000 years ago. Here is the Apostle John speaking of Jesus Christ in John 1:10 “He was in the world, and the world was made by Him, and the world knew Him not.”

The world still knows Him not!

We do not need another P.E.A.C.E. group as Warren calls his movement. We need dedicated believers in Jesus Christ telling the world “But God commendeth His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8

The world needs to hear “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through Him might be saved. He that believeth on Him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.” John 3:16-18

It amazes me to see this man speak for five or ten minutes on FoxNews and never mention his Savior Jesus Christ. The Saddleback church, of which he is pastor, has a reasonably clear Statement of Faith yet he seemed unwilling to share that with the millions of FoxNews listeners this morning. We can pray he will do better and share salvation in Jesus Christ on his already recorded special to be aired later on FoxNews. I am not very optimistic.
Philosophy and vain deceit will not save the world. Man will not save the world. The only salvation for this corrupt world is for believers in Christ to go into the world and share their belief and trust in the Savior Jesus Christ alone.

Find out here on our personal web site how simple it is to KNOW how to have Eternal Life.

23 responses to “Rick Warren — Problem? or Problem Solver?

  1. Hello again, Heissailing,

    Thank you for sharing your views in such a kind manner.
    But if the church goes after social issues rather than deal with sound doctrine, and since belief always determines behavior, then when truth is taught, then it can be lived out & lives can be transformed. But when the church begins to veer off into things it was never instructed to do, (since this world is sin-cursed & our job is to call individuals out of it to faith in Christ,) then we will not only lose the world anyway, but something far worse: the commendation of our Lord. May the Lord bless you!

  2. David Wyatt,
    I recently read a biography of Martin Luther King JR (Let the Trumpet Sound by Stephen Oates). Apparantly, MLK really struggled with that issue while a young paster at his own church in Birmingham. He initially stuck with preaching exclusively around sound doctrine. But the segregation of the city finally became too much to ignore. He finally came to the conclusion that the Church must deal, with God’s grace, on the injustices here on Earth, as well focus on the hereafter. I am not arguing with your point of view, which I respect, nor am I comparing Obama (nor Rick Warren for that matter) with MLK, as his situation in the segregated South was an extreme case. I am going to have to side with Rick Warren and OBama on this issue. I think the problem for me is when social issues in church are done without God. What Rick Warren does is all well and good, but it seems like God is sort of left out of some of these church funded programs and he becomes a fifth wheel. I guess that is where I draw the line on that one.

  3. Hello Heissailing!

    Actually the problem as I see it is both political as well as subject matter. The congregation of a church should rightly expect the sacred desk, or pulpit to be exclusively for the exposition of God’s holy Word which alone can save the eternal soul! (See Rom.1:16). To allow man’s ideas to come from this place is spiritually irresponsible at best. That’s the way I see it. God Bless.

  4. David H. Wyatt said,

    December 3, 2006 at 9:17 pm

    Bro. Jack,

    Have you seen this article? This wuld definitely put Warren squarely on the “Problem” side with a capital P!


    Sorry, I read the article, and I don’t understand what the problem is. Is it Obama’s politics or the subject matter that talked about before the congregation?

  5. Bro. Jack,

    Have you seen this article? This wuld definitely put Warren squarely on the “Problem” side with a capital P!


  6. Amen to that bro. Jack.

  7. Bro David,

    The more I find out about this person the more disturbing he becomes. I have in my files some very distressing quotes from Warren.

    But, David. we just need to keep preaching the clear saving Gospel of Jesus Christ.


  8. You know bro. Jack, a very disturbing but not surprising trend is that many of the mushroom-growth mega-churches like Warren’s are pushing aside the solid Bible-based ones. It may be that soon we here in America are driven underground by these so-called Purpose-Driven ones! Their Purpose is to drive us out of sight!

  9. Alex,

    Thanks for the comment..

    You are right about Rick Warren.. I am not sure Rick knows the clear Good News of Jesus Christ.. I have never read or heard it from him.

    In Christ,
    ExP (Jack)

  10. Christians, preachers/leaders or not, should have one clear goal in mind, which is proclaiming the Good News of Jesus. Everything else is truly insignificant in comparison.

    It is too bad he didn’t take advantage of that big audience he had on Fox…

  11. Michael,

    Thanks for the note — I was not aware of Warren’s “statistic” but claiming such without evidence does seem to shamelessly promote his “recovery” program.

    He is still missing the point..

    Proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ is the primary ministry of believers.


  12. Rick Warren’ ministry Pastors.com, has consistently presented the alleged statistic that 20% of ministers are pornography addicts. This is patently disgraceful conduct by a ministry. The facts just do not prove this. Rick Warren, apparently, is unconcerned with the slander to other ministers – if it can promote one of his programs.

  13. Patrick,

    Thanks for your comment.

    A statement of faith is certailnly not a document inspired (God breathed) as is the Bible, but is generally something written by a church, group or individuals outlining their positions on certain doctrines of the Bible.. usually with supporting Bible references.

    The Nicene Creed, however, is also not “inspired” of God, is not very comprehensive and does not support its claims with Scripture references, thus leaving some statements open to wide interpretation and confusion in the churches who adopt it. ie; “We acknowledge one baptism for the remission of sins.” Without proper explanation and amplification this could lead one to believe in the works-preaching of the doctrine of “baptismal regeneration,” which is clearly contrary to Scriptural salvation by faith alone in Christ, without a requirment of any works on man’s part.

    Adhering to a comprehensive statement of faith is essential to the furtherance of clear Biblical teaching on many issues, particularly, Salvation in Christ alone.

    See our Statement of faith at: http://www.weaverclan.com/state.htm

    ExP (Jack)

  14. Patrick O'Hannigan

    I’ve always been ambivalent about statements of faith. Perhaps it’s my Catholic upbringing, but I’ve never felt compelled to “improve” on the Nicene Creed, or Thomas’s words to Jesus after the Resurrection. Too often a statement of faith seems like a carryover from corporate America, where it’s all about customer satisfaction– and that mindset would seem to be the wrong one for any Christian church.

  15. the merry widow

    You can string together words to make a lovely refrain, but if it is vile, foul, blasphemous and worldly, what is it’s worth? If you have the Word of G*D and ignore it? It is still of great worth, just not to you. It can sound good but be totally useless to you. And Mike, you are right, Warren appears to be among the “another generation”! From such(by G*D’s grace) I will turn away!
    Jack, be chatting at you! G*D bless!


  16. Thanks, Mike,

    You are right about the Statement of Faith. A Statement of any kind is of no value if not backed by integrity and truth.

    Same for our Constitution.

    I must assume followers must be as blind as the leaders.


  17. Jack,
    I forgot one thing: A good statement of faith doesn’t mean a thing if it is not followed. Look at the Constitution of the former USSR sometime. It was great and nothing like what the butchers of the Communist Party were about. What about the Constitution of the USA? What good is it anymore? It is not followed either – merely re-interpreted to explain away everything important.

  18. Hey brother-
    You were most kind in dealing with Rick Warren. Allow me to step it up a notch or two if it’s ok.
    I view him (Warren) as in this class, this generation: Read Joshua 2:7 first, then this: verse 10, “And also all that generation were gathered unto their fathers: and there arose another generation after them which knew not the LORD, nor yet the works which he had done for Israel.” Obviously the interpretation is to the children of Israel after Joshua’s and the rest of his leadership passed off the scene. But it still applies. Rick Warren is of the “another” generation – one of a different kind, not the same, as the one before him. He fits the description of the character of the last days, when perilous times would come. . . “having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.” (II Tim.3:5)
    It probably won’t happen like the scripture demands of believers, but it ought to. But what does that say of the followers? Are they as blind as the blind leader? Now, there’s an interesting possibility.
    Take care and keep at it.
    Your brother and friend in the Lord Jesus Christ,

  19. the merry widow

    P.S.- It is my belief that once you swallow a lie or deception willingly, you are open to more and more and more of the same! Clinging to the Truth will save you a lot come Judgement Day!


  20. the merry widow

    Being praised in the msm is more reason to run as far and as fast away from it as possible! Screaming would help too!


  21. Thanks for your comments David and Merry Widow,

    Purpose Drivel… Appropriate description.

    But sadly, folks are falling for it — believers are being blinded and the blimd are being decieved.

    And it is being publicized and praised in the major media..

    ExP (Jack)

  22. the merry widow

    Nanc calls it the purpose drivel nonsense! It has now becoming a fixture at the church I’m in, for now! Programs rather than relationship, the death of real Christianity! Spiritual blindness shouldn’t surprise us, Peter warned of the Great Apostacy, and itching ears listening to doctrines of demons! Satisfying their appetites rather than seeking righteousness. I am grieved, but not surprised. Appalled, but not shaken, I am standing on a Rock that never moves or shifts, the foolish want their cake and eat it too. Well, pride was the first sin and wanting your own way is prideful! G*D is outside HIS own church, knocking to come in. Sad!
    God morning, G*D bless and Maranatha!


  23. Once again, bro. Jack, you’ve just torn that bull’s eye out of the frame! I appreciate your excellent comments on this. I am Southern Baptist, & before I knew much of the man, it was said that he was conservative & really winning many to Christ. Unfortunately that is wide of the mark as you know. It is sad how his purpose drivel is leading so many astray. Yes, there is a fraction of good in it, but the poison far outweighs its positive aspects. Have you heard of the Emergent Church? More of teh same drivel, just worse. Thanks for speaking out against it. God Bless you for preachuing the simple powerful Gospel of Jesus Christ!