Monday, February 21, 2011

Hey Pastor, Stop Doing So Much Teaching - Rick Warren's Sermon At Desiring God (Part 12)

The following commentary corresponds to the following video from 41:18 to 43:50

From the outset of this segment Rick Warren tries to respond to his critics who lambasted him for his statement that the next reformation will be "deeds not creeds". This is exactly what Rick Warren stated in an interview with Beliefnet:

I’m looking for a second reformation. The first reformation of the church 500 years ago was about beliefs. This one is going to be about behavior. The first one was about creeds. This one is going to be about deeds. It is not going to be about what does the church believe, but about what is the church doing.

Yet again this serves as a classic example of Rick Warren's warped view of the Gospel and conversion. The deeds are a natural extension of rightly understanding the creeds. Just like James tells us that faith without works is dead (James 2:17, 2:26). James is not saying that salvation is also by works. He is saying "deeds" are the fruit of genuine saving faith. He is saying that if there are no deeds then we need to re-examine the faith that this person professes. When Rick Warren thinks that the Gospel can have significantly improved "results" by making the narrow gate into a wide gate and offering salvation without biblical repentance - then it is no wonder why he thinks that the next reformation is all about telling a bunch of goats how to act like sheep. Rick, the criticism you have received over this is highly justified - I thought you told us that you learn from your critics? You have not been misunderstood, it is you who have failed to understand the doctrine found in those creeds and that those doctrines are applied naturally by genuinely converted believers. The first reformation was largely about recovering the true Gospel hidden beneath the works righteous hot air that flowed from the pope's mouth. The only difference in the "second reformation" may well be which pope the reformers have to deal with this time around!

This ridiculous diatribe then leads into another incredibly stupid statement (and a strong contender for the dumbest comment in the whole sermon - and we're talking a long strong list of contenders) where Warren tells his audience that they "are teaching their congregations too much". No Rick, the problem is that you sell too many books to too many people that teach too many of your own ideas that have no basis in the Scripture. Surely Rick Warren must take some responsibility for the masses of false converts and severe biblical illiteracy that run rampant in mainstream modern evangelical churches. My head is spinning at the continual avalanche of unbiblical pragmatic man-centered philosophy. Is Rick Warren a bottomless well? Perhaps if pastors were not so enamored with the "success" of the Purpose Driven bandwagon, and they took their copy of Purpose Driven Life and started using it as a door stop (or boat anchor), and actually started expounding the Scriptures relentlessly, then we might start to see a growing number of people who have been regenerated and start bearing fruit in keeping with true repentance.

But I wouldn't say that Pastor Warren teaches too much, he should just teach his schtick on a talkback show instead of from a pulpit - because it does not belong there. And it is an insult to the many faithful shepherds in the audience.

More to come . . .

Go On To Part 13
Go Back To Part 11
Go Back To Part 1

1 comment:

David Ford said...

The one thing that Rick and John Piper have in common is that they are both into "deeds" and selling books rather than repentance and seeking for the Righteousness of God through the faith that was of, and in Jesus Christ.