In a December 17th 2007 article titled, Rick Warren Counsels Jews on Recruiting Congregants, the Christian Post reported that the beloved senior
pastor and founder of Saddleback Church in Lake Forest California, a Southern Baptist congregation, "attended a large Reform Jewish gathering last
week to share tips on how to build a community."
So, instead of sharing Christ with his Jewish audience, Pastor Warren shared "tips on how to build a community?"
The article went on to say this about Warren's visit:
The "Purpose-Driven" pastor spoke to thousands of Jewish leaders Thursday night at the Union for Reform Judaism's biennial convention in San Diego.
With the holiday season in mind, Warren urged clergy to take advantage of crowded events to publicize other programs so people can get involved in the
community through smaller groups.
OK - I'm confused - We have a Christian pastor addressing a Jewish audience - so which holiday are they talking about here - or does it even matter?
"There are some principles that apply regardless of our faith, if it's Jewish or Christian," he [Warren] said at the convention.
One of his principles: "Just be nice to people. Smile."
This is Pastor Rick's message to Jewish leaders - smile and be nice? They needed Warren to come and tell them this? And how are these principles
going to gain anyone entry to the Kingdom of God - or is that even relevant?
Is this why Jesus Christ was nailed to a cross - so Christians could proudly share their pragmatic principles with those who reject Him? Are we to
conclude from this report that community involvement is more important than eternal life and the forgiveness of one's sins?
After Warren spoke a few minutes at the podium, he sat alongside two popular Southern California rabbis for a casual talk about strengthening
Jesus Christ rose from the dead and this "Christian" pastor talks casually to rabbis about "strengthening congregational life" around the
synagogue? There is no life apart from Jesus Christ! That's why He called the religious leaders of the day "whited sepulchers" that outwardly
appeared beautiful, but inwardly were "full of dead men's bones." (Matthew 23:27)
Why is this double-minded man still pastoring a Southern Baptist church? What does he have to do to get fired? And why do SBC pastors continue to
teach and promote his books, his programs, his sermons and his P.E.A.C.E. Plan when apparently being Purpose Driven doesn't even require faith in
If anyone can be Purpose Driven, then who needs Jesus? Why not just be Purpose Driven and leave it at that - no Christianity - no Christ - no Holy
Spirit - no New Testament - just Purpose Driven?
Lucifer said "I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the
sides of the north: I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High." (Isaiah 14:13b-14)
Isn't that being Purpose Driven?
Other advice given by Warren included looking at everything from an outsider's viewpoint, such as simplifying worship terms, making strangers feel
welcome, and encouraging interaction.
How about encouraging interaction with the only begotten Son of God by worshipping Him in Spirit and in Truth through repentance and faith? Was there
any mention of this at the gathering - or would that hamper recruiting efforts down at the Temple?
"The congregation that really loves people, you have to lock the doors to keep people out," said Warren, whose Saddleback Church in Lake Forest,
Calif., is scheduled to host 14 Christmas services this year with an estimated crowd of 45,000 people.
But isn't Warren essentially locking Heaven's doors to those without Christ by denying them the Gospel they so desperately need? How is this a
demonstration of love - or do Jews have no need of Jesus?
The truth is, the Lord's harshest rebukes were always directed toward religious leaders who postured themselves as righteous while keeping people out
of the Kingdom of God with their own self-serving agendas.
"But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither
suffer ye them that are entering to go in." - Matthew 23:13
Unfortunately, too many of today's pastors, both inside and outside the Southern Baptist Convention have totally invested themselves and their
churches into the Purpose Driven paradigm. To speak up now and rebuke Warren publicly would require they admit to their colleagues and congregations
that they were wrong about the man and his teachings. And with so much pride at stake and so many careers and ministries in the balance, I dare say
there aren't many out there who would be willing to step forward to confess and repent.
My prayer is that the Lord will bless some of them, even if only a few, with the courage and faith to do so while there's still time.
"He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life." - 1st John 5:12