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Another Gospel Preached by Rick Warren in Purpose Driven Life
Recently, the book Purpose Driven Life written by Pastor Rick Warren has taken the world by storm. This article analyzes and reviews this book from a Biblical point of view. There are three main problems with the book.
1) Doctrinal Mistakes-
The Bible makes it very clear that we need to confess our sins and repent in order to receive our salvation. Unfortunately, most people try to emphasize the receiving part and overlook the repenting part. Apostle John made it very clear in John 16:8-11 that the Holy Spirit convicts us of our sins (16:8, 9), of the righteousness of Christ (16:8, 10), and of judgment (16:8, 11). We are convicted of the righteousness of Christ so that we can believe and accept what Christ had done for us by confessing with our mouth the Lord Jesus Christ and believing in our heart that God has raised Him from the dead (Romans 10:9). We are convicted of the judgment by understanding that we need to repent as Jesus called us to (Matthew 4:17). The true believers are the ones who truly repented of their sins.
The Purpose Driven Life on the other hand, tries to convince us that one can build a relationship with God, without confessing our sins. It is true that believers appear righteous in front of God, but only because of the blood of Christ which clothes us from Gods wrath. However, we must confess our sins in order to receive this free gift of salvation. Jesus reminded us that those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick; that He did not come to call the righteous but sinners (Mark 2:17). Unfortunately, the concept of sin is almost absent in Rick Warrens book. As a matter of fact Mr. Warren might have purposely avoided mentioning sin in his book because of his seeker friendly approach. The title of Chapter 14 in his book is when God seems distant, and Mr. Warren quotes Isaiah 8:17 to illustrate his point. While acknowledging that sins can grieve the Spirit and quench our fellowship with God, Mr. Warren says that it is not the main reason why God seems distant. We cannot not disagree more with him. Sin is the main reason why God becomes distant from us. As a matter of fact, Isaiah 8:17 was given to the House of Jacob (the Northern Kingdom) reminding them that their sins have resulted in their conquest and exile, and Gods hiding His face from them. David talked about God hiding His face from him in Psalms 51:9, because of his sin with Bathsheba, and the only time God the Father hid His face from God the Son was when Jesus bore our sins on the cross (Matthew 27:46). The sinfulness of sin cannot be underestimated.
Besides implying that one can be accepted by God without confessing our sins, the book further preaches that one can be accepted by God regardless of his or her religious background nor his or her understanding of doctrine (p34). This is absolutely absurd! According to Mr. Warren, a person who accepts every religion in the world (and happen to accept Christ too) will be saved, because God does not care about ones religion background! According to Mr. Warren, cult members who do not accept Christ as God will also be saved, because God does not care about doctrine!
2) Misquoting Bible or Verses taken out of context-
While it is impossible to list all the mistakes of Purpose Driven Life in this article, we try to give the reader just a flavor here.
A lot of Bible verses used by Rick Warren in his book are taken out of context or being misquoted. An example is Isaiah 8:17 as mentioned in Section 1. Rick Warren uses 15 different versions of Bible in his book, picking and choosing translations that would support his views. This is dangerous, for not all translations are accurate.
For example, on page 165, Rick Warren mentions that gossips tend to split the church. While the concept is true, he misquotes Bible again by citing Jude 1:19 which is for false teachers instead of gossipers.
Another example can be found on page 82, Rick Warren quoted the words of Eliphaz out of all people to support his point of being at peace and things will go well for you (Job 22:21). If we remember, Eliphaz and his two friends were chastised by God for saying these exact self-righteous words to Job (Job 42:7).
3) Factual Errors-
Factual errors are simply inexcusable and they are littered throughout Rick Warrens book.
Another mistake Mr. Warren made was saying that God never made a person He didnt love (p294). However Romans 9:13 paints a very different picture. God said, Jacob He has loved and Esau He has hated. Shying away from Gods wrath also fits well with Mr. Warrens seeker friendly approach.
Trying desperately to convince the reader that God considers 40 days a spiritually significant time period, Mr. Warren gave examples in the Bible that are simply not true (p 10). Noahs life was not transformed by 40 days of rain; Noah was a just man, perfect in his generations (Genesis 6:9), before the rain. The spies were not transformed in 40 days in the Promised Land; in contrast, because of the disbelief of the spies God punished the Israelites (except Joshua and Caleb) not to enter the Promised Land (Numbers 14:23).
Besides numerous factual errors, misquotations, and verses taken out of contexts, the book, Purpose Driven Life clearly preaches a different gospel (2 Corinthians 11:4), one that conveys the wrong message that one can come to Christ without truly confessing sins, nor paying attention to doctrine. It is our belief that the seeker friendly approach is not Biblical, and it simply does not work.
The Following are Outreach Articles Angels and Demons
Bible, Christmas Trees and Easter
Is the Burning Hell Real
Love Romantic and Wedding Poems
A Painless Method of Suicide
Purpose Driven Life
The Record of Virgin Mary and Suicide Blue
The Seeker Friendly Church (Sensitive Movement)
Teenage Suicide (Teen Suicide, Teenager Suicide)
Is the Burning Hell Real
What's the Will of God Why Does God Allow Suffering?
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