"Now in our 25th year of standing for truth!"
Eric & Melanie Barger
Update December 14, 2007
Pastors told to get rid of "troublemakers"
(RICK WARREN'S WAY)
Purpose Driven Guru tells Pastors that Disunity is Satan's "Greatest Weapon" (?)
By Eric Barger
It figures that Rick Warren would unite with over 100 assorted liberals, heretics and confused Evangelicals in a love-letter calling for unity and common ground with Muslims. However, when dealing with dissenters who oppose his Purpose Driven philosophy and theology, it’s clearly his way or the highway.
In his November 14, 2007 directive to pastors, “What the Bible says about handling disunity” from his Pastors.com website, Warren outlines that "You've got to protect the unity of your church. If that means getting rid of troublemakers, do it."
Disruptions and disagreements in the Body are unseemly. However, unity in the church at the expense of truth isn’t really unity at all. Likewise, troublemakers may actually be rescuers of the Church if the questions they raise and the opposition they bring are scripturally founded and aimed at restoring authentic biblical teaching and practices. But of course, we need to understand exactly what terms like “unity” and “troublemaker” refer to in Rick Warren’s universe.
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to understand what Warren means when he encourages leaders on how to deal with “dissenters” opposed to what he deems as “progress.” To Warren, “disunity” refers to opposition to the new way to do church, in particular, the Purpose Driven way.
For example, Warren has clearly stated that those who insist on opposing his church transforming plan for growth are “problems.” He has joked about eliminating those of us stuck in what he considers the Stone Age by stating, “The pillars are only holding things up!” Warren claims that when those unwilling to change do leave a church that in reality it’s a “blessed subtraction.” Talk like this should be perceived as offensive. It is sad that so many only chuckle.
What Warren has accomplished in his short tenure as Secretary and Guru of Growth isn’t funny to a lot of people. To condescend about and encourage what amounts to the disenfranchisement of people who have poured their time, money and emotions into a church - for what appears to be the sake of selling more books and materials - is frankly sick. Though I’m sure it sounds cynical, when one considers the money that has changed hands to acquire Purpose Driven materials, it is to Warren’s advantage that any negative voices be made to appear foolishly out of step and silenced if possible. Encouraging the elimination and alienation of those who defy the growing Purpose Driven invasion when it comes knocking on their church doors is a key goal in Warren’s strategy. These dissenters are interfering with his version of unity. They are bad for business. They defy his obvious hunger for power and control. They are the troublemakers.
Warren begins his November 17 email by stating that the Bible speaks more about unity then of Heaven and Hell. Though I haven’t taken the time to count up the references yet, I am confident that this isn’t so. Let me ask, what about references insisting that we ministers hold to sound doctrine Rick? Does unity outweigh that too? It would appear so at least in Warrenessee. Warren concludes by telling his estimated 400,000+ readers that disunity is Satan’s greatest weapon against the Church. What? While it might be construed as progress that Rick Warren even acknowledges the existence of Satan, to espouse the notion that disunity is the Devil’s chief weapon is not just poor theology. It is a lie. Sins, such as greed and lust, are Satan’s greatest weapon against the Church. However, if Rick Warren is able to make these statements unchallenged then slothfulness and biblical ignorance are obviously gaining ground.
WHOEVER SAID THAT MINISTERS ARE ALWAYS RIGHT?
The Bible does warn those who cause division and give instructions on how to deal with them. However, as Paul wrote of this (see Titus 3) the supposition is that those in leadership are indeed theologically correct and acting biblically first. Again, no one wants dissention and division but unless a man named Martin Luther – a troublemaking dissenter – had caused the great stir and division which he brought about we might possibly never have broken the bondages and domination of Rome!
Luther’s Reformation was based on good theology. Warren’s announced quest for a “new reformation” is not. What Purpose Driven and Seeker proponents need to stop and consider before buying further into Warren’s folly is that Jesus warned us a whopping 14 times about religious leaders who would come and mislead. Pastors and leaders – yours truly included - can be mistaken. Does Jesus expect us to unquestionably accept what is taught every time some alleged Christian leader with a publishing deal or a microphone concocts yet another wacky program or theology? Absolutely not! We are to test all teachings, sermons or philosophies to see if they match up to the Bible. (I Thess 5:21) Otherwise, some other neo-evangelical like Rick Warren will use the misguided idea of “unity before truth” to sidetrack others into what can only be referred to as cultism.
During his last visit with them, Paul warned the Ephesian elders that after his departure “grievous wolves (will) enter in among you, not sparing the flock.” Paul then states that “Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them.” He concludes his warning by stating “Therefore watch...” (Acts 20:28-31a)
Peter writes, “But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction.” (II Peter 2:1) In these two passages, Peter and Paul are obviously directing their warnings at the Church. Therefore, it is not “disunity” to oppose unbiblical ideas and teaching inside the Body. It is actually the most appropriate thing to do.
My words here are not intended to give credence to individuals in church who are just plain disagreeable, who buck everything at every turn and who are bent on being upset over silly stuff. But when it comes to indubitably going along with Church leadership on any given issue – particularly, if it’s only for the sake of unity itself – just remember this phrase: Unity at the expense of truth is not the unity taught in the Bible. Believers should all be able to unify on that!
For more on Rick Warren and the Purpose Driven Life see:
Our Disturbing Spiritual Condition
Will They Say of Us: "They Were the Evangelical?"
The Common Ground of Rick Warren and Mitt Romney
Examining the Purpose Driven Philosophy
Christians and Muslims
The only thing I would have changed about the articles on Islam in the December 4th Update ("I Can't Sign the Letter" and "Their God is NOT Our God!") is that I wouldn’t have pulled so many punches!!! LOL. Just kidding.
I’ll say one thing, if I was one of those guys that signed this letter, and one of my flock saw this article, I would be so embarrassed, not to mention damned. You stated the correct Biblical view with out compromise or apology.
Well done. (as usual)
Thank God for you Eric for standing boldly without fear for our God.
It is definitely time for the truth to come out. what has happened to the church. its not powerful at all. I like what you preach and teach keep it up. Its time for the church to wake up.
I have been receiving your email for a while now....just wanted to tell you one more time, KEEP UP THE WONDERFUL DEDICATED WORK!!!! You are so disciplined in your work...I try, but get so distracted. Thank you again. God speed for you and your Ministry.
Elizabeth, David, Amanda and many others,
I can't thank you enough for that statements of encouragement.
God bless you!
Old Videos Still ALIVE
Dear Brother Eric!!!
I was so glad to find that you had a website!!! I figured that you did, though! Ran across a video that I bought years ago, when you visited our Church (First Church of the Open Bible) in Spokane, WA.
I have been watching it again and I am going to pass it on to a friend. All of the stuff on it is still relevant!!! I think it was done in 1993 while you were speaking in Canada! But, I cannot believe that what was said on there is even MORE relevant for TODAY!!! The times sure are heating up more and more, aren't they?
Just wanted to say "Thank You" for what you are continuing to do for the Lord and to warn people. You were a blessing to me then and you are a blessing STILL. God Bless you brother for all of your hard work, and the hard work of your family and staff!!! God be with you all, and I look forward to our FUTURE together!
I found you by just typing your name and .com in and THERE YOU WERE!!! When I got the video....there wasn't a website then, I think!
Eric Comments: Connie,
Thanks for the email.
I am always excited to see how the Lord is still using so many of the "old" books, videos and audio tapes. Praise the Lord!
Thanks for the update and for your continued prayers and support.
God Bless you!
Presenting Light Next to Darkness
I get your email letter on my G-mail (GOOGLE!) account. I just thought you might want to know what some of the Google sponsored advertisers are in the "sponsored links" that "come" with your letter:
Witch Way New Age Store
Witch Tools, Supplies and More Even some fun Witchy Wear
Your Own Book of Shadows
Choose from a variety of exquisite, hand-tooled designs and colors.
Pagan needs & supplies,
Hand made wooden Books and Boxes Personalized books, boxes and more.
Order of the Golden Dawn
Initiation into the Golden Dawn Local & Correspondence Membership
Magick Potions + Bottles
Witchcrafted Potions and Bottles. Energy-Attuned for Magickal Use.
Wiccan Pagan Goddess Supplies. Find all of your tools here cheap.
These Love Spells Work
links to honest spell workers that get fast results
Love Spells »
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Almost makes me want to stop using Google (along with some other things I've heard).
God bless you,
Yes I know that Yahoo, Google, MSN...virtually all web services accept adds for anyone willing to pay and that those ads are placed along side emails or searches that have similar topics included. So, my emails warning of the occult and Harry Potter and Mormonism, etc often generate opposing advertising. I'm not going to defend them per se but in this case its really not Google's fault. Its just the way their programming system works. *
Anyway, I appreciate you sending me the ads. They do serve as a reminder of how many pagan influences there are out there.
Bless you my friend and Happy Thanksgiving!
* Regardless of how it happens, we need to be light in the darkness!
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