The Controversy that is Rick Warren

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Without a shadow of a doubt, Rick Warren has been the most influential pastor in the last two decades. His Saddleback Church is known worldwide and he has personally sold millions of books. The Purpose Driven Life has influenced millions of Christians. The Purpose Driven Church has now influence up to 30,000 churches here in the United States.

Comprehensive Book Review

IX Marks penned a comprehensive review of Rick Warren’s greatest hit for church planting, The Purpose Driven Church. 

There is no argument against the fact that Warren’s book has had a tremendous impact on American churches. This has been both a blessing and a curse. Yes, the growth of the church can be a great thing, on the surface. But the seeker – sensitive feeling of churches has watered down the message from the pastor. Not wanting to offend churchgoers to boost numbers has made a mockery of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

And this controversy brings us to the main point of this article.

Is Rick Warren a wolf? Or is he just misguided on his church growth thoughts?

This church planting focus has made every church feel the same. Dimmed lights, singing “worship” music from the radio, and sermon puns played from secular movies has invaded main street. This sissified gospel message has destroyed Christian families all over the world. But at what cost?

The knowledge people have of Jesus Christ.

Thousands are being led to the slaughter because of this church movement. We will highlight in the coming sections that Rick Warren is sound on his theology, but is that just a play? Is he actually a wolf in sheep’s clothing?

IX Marks Review Quote

The in depth, comprehensive review IX Marks did was astounding. He gave both sides of the argument, while also focusing that he thought Rick was a brother.

Indeed, Warren is part of our own household. On the spiritual battlefield, he is our ally. His understanding of salvation is biblical, he trusts in the sovereignty of God, evangelistic zeal pulsates from his heart, he affirms the inerrancy and sufficiency of Scripture, he believes in regenerate church membership, and he has been practicing church discipline for 21 years now. In fact, his beliefs and values are ours in so many ways that we are wary of questioning his methods lest we be seen as turning our turrets on our own trenches. What’s more, his evident productivity in evangelism is nearly unrivaled, which makes his methods seem sacrosanct, and critically evaluating them taboo.

Rick Warren on Hell with John Piper

Calvinists are starting to grow tired of Piper. Sure, he is the leading the movement of Calvinism becoming mainstream again. But his constant interaction with charismatic and false teachers is questionable. Is he trying to win them over with his association? Or is he secretly wanting to go that route later in life? Only time will tell.

His associations with Rick Warren have been exposed as well. Although I might not consider either of these men to be false teachers, they certainly draw their fair share of critiques.

When pressed about various topics, including salvation, Warren sounds like every other mega-pastor. They promote sound theology with a lot of fluff in-between. That way the listener hears fluff instead of hard hitting theology. Sure individuals may feel away from God when they are spending eternity in Hell. But Hell is also God’s creation. They are there for sinning and not accepting Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. They did not repent of their sins and follow Him.

Nonetheless, I believe Piper was pressing him on these questions to clear Warren’s name. What Piper is doing in this video is giving Warren a chance to explain himself in this greatly watched YouTube interview.

Rick Warren Associating with Atheists

Sure, we all have atheist friends and family members. Yes, we interact with them. But do we go on national tours and stand next to them in senate meetings? Are we shepherds of God’s flock? No.

Pastors are held to a higher standard than the sheep. Pastors can even expect to be judged more harshly than the sheep because they have more responsibility. So why does Warren insist on crossing the aisle to associate with high ranking Atheists? The answer is still unclear.

“If we kiss, it will be the kiss heard round the world.”

This was a quote taken from Warren while he was in a senate meeting with Elton John. Yes, that Elton John. The homosexual, atheistic singer from across the pond. This quote was picked up by various media personnel that were at the meeting and reported in various articles.

The Daniel Plan

Beneath all the slick marketing and management, you will be able to observe that he works hard to bring in teachers who promote demonic spirituality.

He has recently introduced something he calls the Daniel Plan, which features some doctors who promote, amongst all the healthy living tips, such things as REIKI, EASTERN MEDITATION, and even TANTRIC SEX. These doctors include Dr. Mehmet Oz who recommends Reiki , Dr. Daniel Amen (promoter of Tantric Sex) and Dr. Mark Hyman, another strong advocate for mystical meditation.

Excerpt was pulled from an article at www.christian-faith.com.

Saddleback Church is a mega church. Wouldn’t you think he could find various doctors within his congregation to come up with a healthy living plan?

2012 Report on Rick Warren and Homosexuality

Warren has focused a lot of his attention on the outbreak of HIV/AIDS in Africa. To his credit, his church has dedicated millions of dollars to combat this crisis. Warren himself has also donated a great amount of money to this ministry.

But focusing on this issue has focused a lot of attention on the homosexual topic. When pressed on this by a reporter from the Huffington Post, Warren tip toed around it. The quote below is from an article at www.christiannews.net:

“I have many, many gay friends, and have worked around the world with them in gay organizations to try to stop AIDS,” he said. “We’re doing ‘World AIDS Day’ this weekend at Saddleback Church. My wife and I have given millions of dollars to help people with HIV/AIDS and have worked with gay organizations on that.”

“What about the love part, though? I hear about the AIDS part,” asked Hill. “It’s not illegal to love somebody,” Warren replied.

“But you think it’s a sin,” Hill asserted. “No, it’s not a sin to love somebody,” Warren said.

“It might be a sin to have sex with them,” he added. “It might be.”

However, just moments prior, Hill aired a clip from an interview that Warren participated in on Piers Morgan this week, where Warren presented a slightly different answer. He began by responding to the question of whether or not a person can be born homosexual.

Faulty Theology

“I think the jury is still out on that,” he said. “It wouldn’t bother me if there was a ‘gay gene’ found, because here’s what we know about life: I have all kinds of natural feelings in my life, and it doesn’t necessarily mean that I should act on every feeling. … I do not believe that attraction is a sin, but I do believe that some actions are sin.”

Warren stated during his interview with Hill that he believes sex outside of marriage is always sinful, however, and that he obtains his views from the Bible.

“I make no bones about it. I’m an evangelical pastor, so my source of authority is, what does the Bible say about it?” he said. “However, people will have other sources of authority.”

“Or, different readings of the Bible,” Hill injected.

“Or different readings — that’s very true,” Warren agreed.

Later during the interview, when Hill asked Warren if he believes homosexuals will go to Hell, he replied that they will not.

“No, not because they’re gay,” he said. “We go to Hell because we choose to reject the grace of God.”

When Hill asked what happens to a homosexual that accepts Jesus, Warren responded enthusiastically.

“He’s going to Heaven!” he declared. “Without a doubt.”

My Final Verdict on Rick Warren

Do I believe that Warren is in fact a wolf in sheep’s clothing? I still do not know. The above article is very concerning. It may also dispute his claims with Piper on his theology. Sure, Warren is very sound on the core of Christian belief. At least when he was being interviewed by a fellow pastor. It is still unclear if Warren is a true wolf.

Is Warren soft while doing interviews with atheists? Yes. But I believe when writing the books that he did, he truly believed that was the way to go. I believe that he truly wanted to grow churches soundly within the bounds of sound doctrine and teachings. There is no doubt that this movement has had negative effects on Christianity in the west. Churches have been sissified and made a mockery of the gospel. Is this Warren’s fault? Or the fault of his loose teaching? Only time will tell.

God bless

 

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Art Azurdia

Art Azurdia Posts His Confession

Our Support for Art Azurdia Should be Pouring in

I have posted Art Azurdia’s full confession below. This was a very heartfelt letter that he typed on his WordPress blog page. I recently made the mistake of lumping Azurdia in with other pastors that have fallen during the #MeToo movement. I was terribly wrong in this judgement. The post has recently been deleted and I have greatly repented for it. Art is still a great Christian and his repenting heart bleeds through this open letter.

Art Azurdia at the Shepherd’s Conference

Art greatly sinned against his wife and family. This is no argument. From Wretched Radio’s Todd Friel, Azurdia is unqualified for ministry. I might actually disagree with this notion, but only time will tell. Art seems to be repenting for his sin and asked for our forgiveness. Of course we forgive him. We are commanded in scripture to forgive always. How many times has God forgiven you? He has forgiven me thousands and thousands of times and will continue to do so. To not honor that request from a fallen brother is hypocritical.

God bless Art and his family. I have been praying for them during this hardship. It is important that when a sound brother falls that we are there to help him through it. Art may not know who I am, but I have learned a lot from his teaching. This does not make me want to quit listening to his teachings, but it has tainted it for many.

We should also pray for Trinity Church through this difficult time. Our brothers and sisters are hurting. We should pray without ceasing.


Art Azurdia’s Public Confession

July 27, 2018

To my wife and family members, the elders and congregation of Trinity Church, the faculty of Western Seminary, and friends and colleagues both near and abroad . . .

Someone very wise once said: “Pastors must be the chief repenters in a congregation of repenters.” It is important that this proves to be the case now—not because I haven’t yet repented, but because my sin is of such a nature that I need to express my repentance to you.

Several years ago, prior to the inception of Trinity Church, I strayed from my wedding vows, breaking the covenantal bond I made to my dear wife thirty-six years ago. More recently, I again violated my marriage commitment. In both instances I engaged in adulterous relationships that were nothing less than acts of defiance to the will of my God and Father, as well as expressions of profound ingratitude for the glorious gospel of Jesus Christ that I prize so dearly.

I confess this sin and take full responsibility for it. There are no justifications, excuses, or rationalizations for my behavior. I, in acts of idolatry, chose sin over God. I am profoundly ashamed at the enormity of my rebellion, as well as the hypocrisy of exercising ministry while cloaking my sin in the shadows.

I am broken by the magnitude of my offenses to God, the devastation I have inflicted upon my wife, the grief brought to bear upon my children, and the disappointment I have produced among the people with whom I have been privileged to share ministry. Though it is entirely undeserved, I humbly ask you to forgive me for my betrayal of your trust and friendship. With each passing day the fresh awareness of this betrayal breaks my heart in greater and deeper ways, leaving me with nothing but a hope in the accomplishments of the cross to which I desperately cling.

Despite the profound grief and shame, I am deeply thankful to my heavenly Father for graciously exposing this sin and forcing me to turn from it. The promise that He chastises those He loves so that His children might share in His holiness gives me hope and comfort. My present and painful circumstances have become, to both my wife and me, the gracious verifications of God’s Fatherhood and my spiritual paternity.

Because of my sin I have disqualified myself from the office of elder. Furthermore, I have no desire to pursue ministry of any kind. My focus is entirely directed at making right the very thing I have ignored for too long: the well-being of our marriage. This long-term process has already commenced in meetings with experienced counselors and, under their supervision, will be extended to include a team of qualified people who will also contribute to the reestablishment and strengthening of our relationship.

This reprioritized commitment will require us to relocate—in large part, as a response to my wife’s desires and needs, and also to make ourselves available to care fully for my wife’s elderly parents. Consequently, she and I now resign our membership at Trinity Church, freeing the elders to give their entire attention to carefully shepherding the congregation through this season of challenge. Likewise, we are choosing to relinquish the remaining balance of the severance package so kindly extended to us by the elders so as to free Trinity Church from the burden of caring for our financial responsibilities.

I am certain that my sin has brought about waves of divergent emotions in many of you: hurt, confusion, sorrow, anger. All of these are appropriate responses to my failures that your Heavenly Father understands. Moment by moment I feel the heavy weight of inflicting them upon you. If, however, I may appeal to your mercy in Jesus Christ, dear friends, allow me to ask four things of you:

1) Please direct your anger and frustration at me, while extending love and support to my children (who have responded to my repentance and confession with kindness and compassion), and especially to my wife, who has revealed the depth of the gospel’s influence in her life by extending undeserved grace and forgiveness to me. Lori continues to display the likeness of her Heavenly Father in real and palpable expressions that overwhelm me with tearful humility and contrition. Though I have failed her egregiously, I love her deeply and desperately. With God’s help, our family will survive this season and eventually thrive for God’s glory;

2) Please pray for the elders of Trinity Church. I have wounded these brothers deeply, and now a great and unexpected responsibility rests upon their shoulders. Owing to the gospel and the restorative power of the Holy Spirit, however, they can lead Trinity Church into a stronger and more vibrant congregational life that will bear a unique and powerful testimony to the gospel and what it can accomplish;

3) Please pray for the congregation of Trinity Church. This is an extraordinary gathering of diverse people who are consumed with the priorities of worshipping the Triune God and declaring the good news of salvation in Jesus Christ. My wife and I have been the consistent recipients of her great love, support, and generosity. Beyond all compare, these eight years at Trinity Church have been our most joyous days in thirty-six years of ministry;

4) Never doubt the gospel and our great Savior, Jesus Christ. I have failed you profoundly, my dear friends, and I do plead for your forgiveness. I love you—albeit with a love that has been marred by great failure. But the gospel of Jesus Christ will never fail you. The fact is, its greatest glory proves most obvious in the context of sin and failure—in this case, my own great sin and failure.

We, in our brokenness and humiliation, now need your prayers.

God bless you,

Art Azurdia

Arminian Doctrine

Arminian Doctrine

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Before The Arminian Doctrine…

Hello and welcome to the podcast! Today on our fourth week of “The Decree of Election” podcast series we are focusing on the Arminian Doctrine. Today’s reading will be from pages 498 – 501 of John MacArthur’s Biblical Doctrine.

Before we begin discussing Arminianism, we are finishing “The Basis of Election”. The highlight of this section is from Deuteronomy 7:7.

“It was not because you were more in number than any other people that the LORD set his love on you and chose you, for you were the fewest of all peoples” Deu 7:7

There was nothing that Israel did to deserve God choosing them. It was solely from God and God alone that they were chosen.

“It is because the LORD loves you and is keeping the oath that he swore to your fathers” Deu 7:8

Throughout our studies it shows that we are chosen by God and His Will alone. There is nothing that I have done to deserve salvation. There is also nothing that I have done to deserve salvation over another individual.

“just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him. In love He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will” Ephesians 1:4-5

It is by God’s Will alone that I have been saved. He predestined us for adoption. What an amazing feeling to be saved and adopted before the foundation of the world! What an amazing God that we worship.


Arminian Doctrine of Conditional Election

For the remainder of the podcast we are focusing in on the Arminian Doctrine. We will be reading the entirety of Dr. MacArthur’s discussion.

This text will be distinguishing the major differences between Calvinism and Arminianism.

If you believe in free will, this will be a podcast highlighting the difference in beliefs. This podcast will highlight the reason we believe in the election!

God bless

new age worship

New Age “Worship”

Hymns at a Funeral

I was at my great uncle’s funeral when we were asked to sing, “It is well”. This hymnal immediately brought me back to my youth when we constantly sung hymns out of the hymnal every Sunday morning. The new age worship has invaded main street as hymns are being killed off for a younger, hipper worship music.

But is this new age worship okay… or biblical?

Hymns usually contain verses or passages within the Bible. These hymns do not need music to make them more spiritual. These hymns do not need fog or dimmed lights to bring out their true meaning.

Yes, hymns actually come from the Inspired Word of God.

It is Well with my Soul


Take “It is Well” for a great example:

1 When peace like a river attendeth my way,
when sorrows like sea billows roll;
whatever my lot, thou hast taught me to say,
“It is well, it is well with my soul.”

Refrain (may be sung after final stanza only):
It is well with my soul;
it is well, it is well with my soul.

2 Though Satan should buffet, though trials should come,
let this blest assurance control:
that Christ has regarded my helpless estate,
and has shed his own blood for my soul. Refrain

3 My sin oh, the bliss of this glorious thought!
my sin, not in part, but the whole,
is nailed to the cross, and I bear it no more;
praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul! Refrain

4 O Lord, haste the day when my faith shall be sight,
the clouds be rolled back as a scroll;
the trump shall resound and the Lord shall descend;
even so, it is well with my soul. Refrain

Psalter Hymnal, (Gray) http://www.hymnary.org/text/when_peace_like_a_river_attendeth_my_way


The worship section of our Sunday service used to ACTUALLY BE WORSHIP. Today’s worship music has turned into a pseudo-intimate love song portrayed at Christ. It is “me” centered instead of focusing on Christ and Christ alone.

Reckless Love


Lets compare “It is Well with my Soul” with “Reckless Love”

[Verse 1]
Before I spoke a word
You were singing over me
You have been so, so
Good to me
Before I took a breath
You breathed Your life in me
You have been so, so
Kind to me

[Chorus]
Oh, the overwhelming, never-ending, reckless love of God
Oh, it chases me down, fights ’til I’m found, leaves the ninety-nine
I couldn’t earn it
I don’t deserve it
Still You give yourself away
Oh, the overwhelming, never-ending, reckless love of God

[Verse 2]
When I was your foe, still Your love fought for me
You have been so, so
Good to me
When I felt no worth
You paid it all for me
You have been so, so
Kind to me

[Chorus]
Oh, the overwhelming, never-ending, reckless love of God
Oh, it chases me down, fights ’til I’m found, leaves the ninety-nine
I couldn’t earn it
I don’t deserve it
Still You give yourself away
Oh, the overwhelming, never-ending, reckless love of God

[Bridge]
There’s no shadow You won’t light up
Mountain You won’t climb up
Coming after me

There’s no wall You won’t kick down
No lie You won’t tear down
Coming after me

[Chorus]
Oh, the overwhelming, never-ending, reckless love of God
Oh, it chases me down, fights ’til I’m found, leaves the ninety-nine
I couldn’t earn it
I don’t deserve it
Still You give yourself away
Oh, the overwhelming, never-ending, reckless love of God

https://genius.com/Bethel-music-reckless-love-spontaneous-live-lyrics


The fall of the church is coming through new age worship music.

God bless

 

Facebook

Facebook Stock Plunge and Beginning 1 John 5!

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Facebook Takes a Dive!

Hello and welcome to the podcast! Today we begin by discussing the Facebook stock plunge. Why did it take this instance to make it plunge? Are we addicted to social media? How is it affecting our overall health?

Mark Zuckerberg lost over 16 billion dollars in five minutes. After a lousy profit projection, Wall Street then goes into a frenzy trading their Facebook stocks. At one point today the Facebook drop was over 20%!

After our 1 John Study?

After we discuss the Facebook plunge we begin our study in 1 John 5. This chapter is the final chapter of our 1 John study. After this study we will then begin studying the age of the earth and giving context to all arguments. Before we begin this study I need to make it well known that I am a young earth believer. I believe that we live on an earth that God created in six days and it is under 10,000 years old. I have been fully indoctrinated by ken hammKen Ham’s Answers in Genesis!

1 John 5:1-4 Study

While discussing 1 John 5:1-4 I go on a rant about His commandments not being burdensome. As always, I then dive into my life as a false convert and how His commandments felt burdensome.

But are His commandments really burdensome? No.

In fact, the life of un repenting sin is burdensome. Constantly searching for the next high, the next paycheck, the next lust. The lusting of the flesh and the wallet only leads to destruction and a false happiness.

Only trusting in Jesus Christ and keeping his commandments will we find peace. Focusing on living for Him and His Will alone is not burdensome. In fact, it is the exact opposite.

As we see in 1 John 5:4, our faith is the victor over the world! We have found victory in our faith that overcomes the entire world!

 ‘For whatever is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that has overcome the world-our faith. ‘ – 1 John 5:4

God bless!