Categories
church cross deception discernment false prophets following christ offense seeing troubles Uncategorized

A Request For Correction From Rick Warren

The following is a letter I received from Rick Warren in regards to an article I wrote, Letter To A New Christian, in which I misstated some information. Some times in our zeal to do the Lord’s work we do not adhere to proper due diligence and overstate or misstate information, in which case we are wrong, and we unduly wrong the other person. I am not above making mistakes, but as Christians we need to take exceptional care to state things factually and not become like the adversary in his use of contortion, abstractions, inaccuracies, and innuendos. It is not a matter of trying to sway listeners or readers by creative writing, but a matter of presenting truth, in its simple unadulterated state. Biblical truth is the main thing, and it is precisely that element that is missing in the New Age presentations of the Gospel. As watchmen and overseers shining the light of truth into the darkness of what Christianity has become, we must remain vigilant that our message is not tainted by the leaven that is so prevalent in the pulpits across this land, and around the world. It is not only our duty to stand for truth, but to bow to correction when our error is discovered; this is not a fault, but a sign of maturity.

The claim that Rick was a protégé of Robert Schuller was made by Schuller himself to Larry King, and the claim that Rick never met Schuller till six years after he founded Saddleback Church is refuted by his wife in an interview with Christianity Today Magazine which took place during Rick’s last year of Seminary. “He had a profound influence on Rick,” Kay says. “We were captivated by his positive appeal to nonbelievers. I never looked back.”

I make no reference to Rick knowing Norman Vincent Peale as he alludes, only that both Peale and Schuller make a living off getting people to believe in themselves instead of Christ Jesus alone.

I have decided to post this request by Rick on the internet for several reasons.
1. To inform those who have read the article that a correction has been made.
2. To acknowledge the fault. It was not a serious fault, but a fault none the less, of which I stand corrected.
3. To let others know that truth is essential and that it can not be minimized for the sake of sloppiness.
4. Because of the importance of the issues at hand and that those who hold the places of prominence in the promotion of error can be seen in all of their activity.
5. To help expose and defeat the enemies of the Cross.
6. To give public notice as to which side of the line I stand, which is the side of Christ.

___________________________________________________________

Hello Steve,

It has been widely misreported and repeated that Robert Schuller was “my mentor” – since Rev. Schuller once claimed on a Larry King Show. I’m sure he had his reasons for stating this, but it simply is untrue.

My ministry mentors were my own father, a Baptist pastor for 50 years, Pastor Harry D. Williams, Dr. W.A. Criswell, pastor of the First Baptist Church of Dallas for decades, and the books of Rev. Charles Spurgeon, C.S. Lewis, Francis Schaeffer, and William Wilberforce.

In 1979, while in seminary in Texas I was given 3 scholarships to attend 3 different pastor’s conferences in California. One of the 3 conferences was held at Garden Grove Community Church. It was a good conference and challenged to “start where people are” when sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ. I still think that is a good idea. However I also noticed that the church did not seem to take them much further spiritually. So when I started Saddleback Church in 1980, I created a systematic discipleship plan based on the 8 things Jesus did with his own disciples in the New Testament. That process of covenants, commitments, and spiritual disciplines became known as the “purpose driven” plan. Actually Saddleback has almost nothing in common with Schuller’s church- we’re not on TV, we don’t wear robes or use an organ, our building is quite simple, we have crosses and Christian symbols everywhere, including scriptures written on the walls of our entrance, we hand out Bible outlines each week, we memorize scripture in the services, and do hundreds of other things that would be the exact opposite of what Rev. Schuller did.

I did not even meet Rev Schuller until six years after I founded Saddleback Church, when I was asked by one of his staff members to share a testimony at a pastor’s conference. I’ve had, maybe three conversations with him in the past 28 years. I did write him once telling him that I thought he was harming the church by using testimonies of Mormons and Muslims in his worship services, since they both deny the orthodox belief in the Trinity, which is essential to our faith as Christians.

Also, In reference to Norman Vincent Peale- I’ve neither met him, nor read any of his books, so he certainly had no influence on me. Again, that myth has been reported in books by and articles by people who make up stuff, didn’t bother to confirm the truth, or even talk to me.

Another correction: I don’t believe that Rev.Schuller ever taught at Fuller Seminary (there is no Fuller University). I studied world missions at Fuller Seminary but my theology degree is from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas.

I would appreciate your correcting this. You know how people pass stuff along the internet that simply isn’t true. Thanks Steve. rick

______________________________________________________

Rick,

I would like to apologize for my inaccuracy, that I fully intend to correct. I am acutely aware that much of what is presented as truth, on the internet as well as other places, is accepted as “the Gospel” without ever being validated, such is the nature of men in these last days. The Bible warns us of unscrupulous men who slip in and take advantage of other men and make merchandise of their souls. I do appreciate your directness and pastoral concern for truth. I will immediately post a correction and a follow up article addressing the necessity for accuracy in reporting and in the ability to discern lies, half truths, and innuendos. I will not justify my fault by the fact that I work forty to fifty hours a week, pastor a small Church in my home, and contribute to a larger on-line community; this is no excuse for sloppiness. When the facts of which we speak are readily available, this kind of error is simply unacceptable; I apologize.

I am puzzled by a few things though, maybe you can help me. I completely understand why someone concerned with Biblical truth would not want to be linked to Robert Schuller. But, since your own ministry is riddled with half truths, inaccuracies, and innuendos, that are very well documented by men such as, Roger Oakland, Ray Yungen, Warren Smith, and others, why are you so concerned about this statement by Robert Schuller? I feel confident that it is not because you are above contorting the high and holy truth to accomplish your own agenda, or because you feel that this association is crippling the cause of Christ. Since you and Mr. Schuller are both “Christian” men and promote and endorse high moral standards, such as telling the truth, why not just ask Mr. Schuller to retract his statement? Of course the puzzle is that two men, both of which have grand platforms to promote the everlasting Gospel of Truth are caught in this apparent tug-of-war: Which one is telling the truth? This issue seems like such a trivial thing to us outside the affairs of the mega church growth business. There is obviously more at stake here than the advancement of truth and the salvation of souls.

You mentioned, “My ministry mentors were my own father, a Baptist pastor for 50 years, Pastor Harry D. Williams, Dr. W.A. Criswell, pastor of the First Baptist Church of Dallas for decades, and the books of Rev. Charles Spurgeon, C.S. Lewis, Francis Schaeffer, and William Wilberforce.” I find this to be very telling. I too have an affinity for, and agree with much of what the men you mention have written, especially Spurgeon, Lewis, and Schaeffer, but your writings do not appear to have profited from their acquaintance. The really telling part comes from the mentors, (used here in the sense of advisers, counselors, confidants, etc.) you did not mention: Peter Drucker, C. Peter Wagner, Rupert Murdoch, and others of which their influence is more apparent, and to this list could be added Robert Schuller. This little bit of “name dropping” is more consistent with good marketing, branding, public persona, identity, and building value, than it is with preaching the Good News, and I find it unusual that a man so totally absorbed in the Kingdom of God does not even allude to Jesus or the Bible in the above list.

I could spend much more time critiquing this letter and your other stuff, but to what end? I will make the corrections to my earlier post because, “You know how people pass stuff along the internet that simply isn’t true.” I know that the Bible is true, just as it is written, and that what is happening with you and much, much, more, that you are affiliated with, are being used as the lead element in an assault against Jesus and His true Church. That assault will not go un-resisted. Not all Christians are shallow followers of good marketing plans, there are a few who actually read and understand Scripture, and part of what they understand is that they are called to be a city on a hill that can not be hid, and to warn the unwary. You can not put that light out, how ever hard you may try.

In Truth,

Steve Blackwell

22 replies on “A Request For Correction From Rick Warren”

Steve….

Even if I had used the qualifier to your quote…”unless they are given new birth” my observations would still have remained the same. I find no problem with your choices to attract both members of the choir and those who would clearly not see life your way into your blog.

Your blog is exclusive in nature and it allows you the comfort of knowing that here, in this place, you have control over the conversation and its outcomes. Millions in the blogosphere do it daily. Such a situation here IS, no doubt, much unlike the world you might have experienced in your younger years when others determined the outcome of how they thought you should see yourself.

The ones that hurt you might have been pompous and arrogant….BUT, you don’t have to be that way to make your point about the loving and generous spirit Jesus provides for us on a daily basis in every breath we take, through every person we meet, in the darkest corners of the world.

We ARE loved….Steve…RIGHT NOW….whether we choose to believe in such a consistent act of The One (God) who loves us…will determine the level of love we will experience throughout our days, months, and years.

One more thing….I am always glad when someone is glad to see of my return.

AngllHugnU2
Author of IM with God

AngllHugnU2,

I’m glad you have returned. I’m always pleased when I discover my writing effects people; that is its purpose.

I want to address your comment, but I do not want to sound defensive, although that may be hard to accomplish. You have obviously misunderstood me, or purposely quoted me out of context; I want to believe it is just a misunderstanding. You quoted me as saying, “The world will never see what I see, they can not….” By ending your quote as you did you have created an air of dishonesty and have given into a desire to gain some advantage by trying to defame me in my own eyes and to those who visit my blog and read your remarks. I sense that this is not your normal method of operation, but that you have taken offense to my writing and you are simply attempting to gain a little peace by retaliation and pop-psychology.

Much can be understood about people by reading what they write, that is why they write, so others will understand them. Usually misunderstandings result for two reasons: poor writing skills, or reading something out of context. In this particular case you have clearly taken my words out of the context of the rest of the sentence; your quote should have included the whole sentence, “The world will never see what I see, they can not, unless they are given a new birth.” With the sentence completed it means something totally different than what you pretend to think. If you related to me that you told your child that, “the story says that the moon is made of green cheese,” and I quote you as saying that you think “…the moon is made of green cheese,” and place the quote on the internet for all to see, I would be irresponsible and owe you an apology.

This is exactly what happens when people read the Bible; they simply take the part they like and leave the rest behind, regardless that they have just destroyed the message of Scripture and sinned against God. Whole new religions are started this way, through dishonesty, fraud, and corruption. This is not anything new, and because of this evil Christ died.

I likewise have made this mistake, being motivated by the flesh so as to short circuit truth and not be found guilty.

I welcome your comments and corrections if they are justified. I am not above being wrong. All I ask is that we try and stay in context.

May the living God
bless you in TRUTH,

Steve Blackwell

“The world will never see what I see, they can not….”

This sounds so much like a comment you might have made as a child….”My dog is better than you dog!” Or…My father can beat your father up!” I often hear in your words and invitations for debate…”Oh yeah….yeah!” It does seem very infantile.

As I read on stuff you have written…I am struck by the competitive drive you have for being correct and right all the time. It appears as a younger person you might have had persons who challenged your self-worth and wholeness in a way that drove you to feel “better than somebody.” And now, you keep watch for those you can attract to you to recreate of open the wounds of those same childhood moments of competing for mom or dad’s love over and over and over again.

So sad to read…..so very sad!

AngllHugnU2
Author of IM with God

AngllHugnu2

Well…just remember two things…projecting your fears upon another’s spiritual journey and calling it theirs is quite unfair. You would hate for me to do such to you. And two, conflict and debate only occurs between to versions or visions of what love or life is all about. Truth rarely, if at all, cares or sees what is false….simply because, as you stated,”truth can never be a lie.”

You speak great words of wisdom, please share with me, out of the Bible, where you received these two pearls. I would not hate to become wiser. There is no such thing as two versions of truth, or love, John 3:16 “For God so love the world that He gave up His Son, that who so ever should believe on HIM (not Buddha, Baal, spirit guides, your inner self, or any thing else), should not perish but have everlasting life.” Outside of Jesus men can not love, or even think a God pleasing thought: Rom 3:10-12 “As it is written: ‘There is none righteous , no, not one; There is none who understands; There is none who seeks after God. They have all turned aside; They have together become unprofitable; There is none who does good, no, not one.'”

Communication is a wonderful thing, when and if it happens. I like communication, that is why I love the Bible so much, it doesn’t violate “reason” it promotes it. God has given us a mind and He has given us His Word; Christianity is not anti-intellectual, it is based on facts that can be propositionally stated and presented. God has told us what to believe and why we should believe it. Faith is not a leap into nothing, it a leap into truth as illustrated, expounded, preached, lived, and rationally presented in the Bible. Jesus is called the Word, He is the personification of all that is written in Scripture, and it has been communicated to us in indisputable logic. We can know for sure the things that God has revealed. Deut 29:29-30:1 “The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may follow all the words of this law.”

I had a friend once, who in his pride would never bend to reason, even when proven wrong. He called himself a Christian, and talked of beauty, and love, and unity, and peace; he reminds me of you. He would put words in Jesus’ mouth, as if he were quoting His exact words and ideas, but Jesus never spoke those words. He would never ever give a reference of where he got those words. He wants to be a Christian according to what he personally perceives Christianity to be, and thinks Jesus would vouch for his words if He were here today. Well, this is all nice, but it is not Christianity, it is self deception, because Jesus didn’t say the things he imagines. But, he just knows that if Jesus were given the opportunity He would say those things. This is called delusional thinking and the hospitals are full of the more extreme cases. They have convinced their “self” that this delusion is the truth, and reason and rational thinking find no place in their minds. You can not communicate with these people. Trying to carry on a normal conversation of “reason” with them, and him is useless. My friend has no valid reason for believing what he does, and he will not document anything he says, because it only exist in his head. This is not believing the Bible, or being a Christian, but this is exactly what you have in much of the Christian Church, and all of the New Age mysticism. This is not truth, this is foolishness. Solomon gives good advise here: Prov 26:4-5 “Do not answer a fool according to his folly, Lest you also be like him. Answer a fool according to his folly, Lest he be wise in his own eyes.”

In both of these cases, you will only yourself to be stressed over whether they SEE what you see. Walking in one’s shoes for a while has a purpose. If we choose to force others to walk in our shoes….they will in fact walk in them….But, they will walk away to love another day with somebody else.

The world will never see what I see, they can not, unless they are given a new birth. I simply lay out the truth, and if God is pleased to send me a soul to read some truth I have displayed here, then I am pleased. I will admit that I do allow myself to become stressed at times, like now, when a closed minded person is living in a state of delusion, and fancies Jesus to be some long haired hippy, playing a tambourine, tiptoeing through the tulips, smiling and hugging, with no care for tomorrow. Here is the Jesus of the Bible that you will have to deal with my friend: Rev 1:13-16 “…One like the Son of Man, clothed with a garment down to the feet and girded about the chest with a golden band. His head and hair were white like wool, as white as snow, and His eyes like a flame of fire; His feet were like fine brass, as if refined in a furnace, and His voice as the sound of many waters; He had in His right hand seven stars, out of His mouth went a sharp two-edged sword, and His countenance was like the sun shining in its strength.” Deut 4:24 “For the LORD your God is a consuming fire , a jealous God.” Mark 6:11 “And whoever will not receive you nor hear you, when you depart from there, shake off the dust under your feet as a testimony against them. Assuredly, I say to you, it will be more tolerable for Sodom and Gomorrah in the day of judgment than for that city!” John 5:22-23 “For the Father judges no one, but has committed all judgment to the Son, that all should honor the Son just as they honor the Father. He who does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent Him.” John 9:39 “For judgment I have come into this world, that those who do not see may see, and that those who see may be made blind.” Rom 2:4-9 “But in accordance with your hardness and your impenitent heart you are treasuring up for yourself wrath in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God, who “will render to each one according to his deeds”: eternal life to those who by patient continuance in doing good seek for glory, honor, and immortality; but to those who are self-seeking and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness — indignation and wrath, tribulation and anguish, on every soul of man who does evil, of the Jew first and also of the Greek;” Heb 10:26-27 “For if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a certain fearful expectation of judgment , and fiery indignation which will devour the adversaries.”

Jesus neither sought out or cared for debate of what was right or wrong….He simply exemplified, embraced, and embodied what it meant to live the Good Life for his Jewish community. Did he ever point out an inconsisitency…Yes…But not as a watchman…rather as a response to a person who needed and searched for the answer to said inconsistency.

Why do you think Jesus was nailed to a cross? Do you think it was because He just walked around minding His own business, well, that was exactly what He did, that was His business. Matt 10:34-39 “Do not think that I came to bring peace on earth. I did not come to bring peace but a sword . For I have come to ‘set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law’; and ‘a man’s enemies will be those of his own household.’ He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me. He who finds his life will lose it, and he who loses his life for My sake will find it.” He was the ultimate watchman, warning, advising, rebuking, demanding, judging, and pointing out the enemy, and for all this they killed Him, and He commanded His followers to “go and do likewise.”

1 Peter 3:15-17 “But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you , with meekness and fear; having a good conscience, that when they defame you as evildoers, those who revile your good conduct in Christ may be ashamed.”

Ezek 33:2-6 “Son of man, speak to the children of your people, and say to them:’When I bring the sword upon a land, and the people of the land take a man from their territory and make him their watchman , 3 when he sees the sword coming upon the land, if he blows the trumpet and warns the people, 4 then whoever hears the sound of the trumpet and does not take warning, if the sword comes and takes him away, his blood shall be on his own head. 5 He heard the sound of the trumpet, but did not take warning; his blood shall be upon himself. But he who takes warning will save his life. 6 But if the watchman sees the sword coming and does not blow the trumpet, and the people are not warned, and the sword comes and takes any person from among them, he is taken away in his iniquity; but his blood I will require at the watchman’s hand.'”

Mark 13:9 “But watch out for yourselves, for they will deliver you up to councils, and you will be beaten in the synagogues. You will be brought before rulers and kings for My sake, for a testimony to them.” 1 Cor 16:13-14 “Watch , stand fast in the faith, be brave, be strong. Let all that you do be done with love.” 1 Thess 5:6-11 “Therefore let us not sleep, as others do, but let us watch and be sober. For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk are drunk at night. But let us who are of the day be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love, and as a helmet the hope of salvation. For God did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us, that whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with Him. Therefore comfort each other and edify one another, just as you also are doing.”

Watch all you want….BUT love far deeper than your gaze.

You say, “Watch all you want….” as if that isn’t important. Thank you I will. And, as far as Love, how could I claim to love if I would allow those who have been brought to me to hear anything less than the whole truth, that their life is in serious danger of eternal torment. I don’t know the kind of love you speak of that cares nothing for the proclaimed truth of God that the world is very quickly headed for a judgment that they need to avoid at all cost. But, the difference between you and me is that you do not believe the truth, and I do, therefore I cannot, not be a watchman, it is something I have to do, because of all the lies of Satan.

Steve Blackwell

Well…just remember two things…projecting your fears upon another’s spiritual journey and calling it theirs is quite unfair. You would hate for me to do such to you. And two, conflict and debate only occurs between to versions or visions of what love or life is all about. Truth rarely, if at all, cares or sees what is false….simply because, as you stated,”truth can never be a lie.”

In both of these cases, you will only yourself to be stressed over whether they SEE what you see. Walking in one’s shoes for a while has a purpose. If we choose to force others to walk in our shoes….they will in fact walk in them….But, they will walk away to love another day with somebody else.

Jesus neither sought out or cared for debate of what was right or wrong….He simply exemplified, embraced, and embodied what it meant to live the Good Life for his Jewish community. Did he ever point out an inconsisitency…Yes…But not as a watchman…rather as a response to a person who needed and searched for the answer to said inconsistency.

Watch all you want….BUT love far deeper than your gaze.

AngllHugnu2
Author of IM with God

AngllHugnU2,

If what I have said has changed your mind then you are correct. If argumentation were never needed the Apostle Paul wasted most of the New Testament. People’s minds have to be changed with good reasoning, based on truth, this is why we preach, argue, debate, and reason, to tear down the worlds false fortresses. I pray your mind has been changed. It is not my intention to harm anyone personally, but the hammer of truth is effective in demolition, and the hammer gets personal, it goes to the root, then the building collapes.

Jer 23:28-29

“What is the chaff to the wheat?” says the LORD.
“Is not My word like a fire?” says the LORD,
“And like a hammer that breaks the rock in pieces?”

Steve Blackwell

“I could go on like this with your entire letter, but what is the use…..Truth can never be a part of the lie, it is absolutely impossible.”‘

This is all you but needed to say if you what you believe can never be harmed. Blessings to you for your strident watchfulness.

Peace!

AngllHugnU2
Author of IM with God

anglhugnu

“Ye shall know the TRUTH and the TRUTH shall make you FREE” – John 8:32

“Jesus said to him, ‘I am the way , the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.'” John 14:6

You said:

Yes…” the Vedas, the Hindu scriptures, say, “Truth is very elusive and hard to find.” At the end of his life, Buddha said, “I’m still searching for the truth.” Mohammed wrote, “I point to the truth.” But, then Jesus comes along and he says, I AM the truth. Not, I point to it. Not I teach it. But, I am the truth. ”

I am glad you stopped by, it is because of people like you that I am here. Yes! I am a watchman. Why am I a watchman? It is not as you think, because I seek admiration, or a position or place in life; to be quite honest I dislike this job very much, and as soon as someone more qualified arrives, the mantel is his, but it appears that Solomon was correct, that there is a time for everything, and this is the time for watchmen; the day demands it. The reason the day demands it is because there is such a thing as “true TRUTH,” as Francis Schaeffer would say, and truth is under attack. Understand, that for truth to be under attack is for Jesus Himself to be under attack, because Jesus, as you think, did not just one day discover truth in Himself, Jesus IS THE TRUTH, and He is God, and there is no other, not in the Hindu Vedas (book of knowledge), not with Buddha, nor with Mohammed, nor any other. These others can not know truth, because it does elude them as you say; they look for it in the stars, and nature, and idols, when it presides in a man, and that man is Jesus. Jesus did not say, “I AM” because of some kind of awakening, He said it because He was identifying Himself as the Creator of all things, visible and invisible, The Great and only God Almighty, God of the burning bush, Who will return one day and judge the earth, and all men, alive and dead, according to how they received true TRUTH.

At some point in time we will all come to understand the very basic reality that “WE GET IT!”….we are the way the truth about how truly close The Father’s Life lives deep within. We will come to understand, appreciate and even love the truly intimate relationship with which we share an inheritance with Jesus and The One (God) as well.

The point in time, of which you mention, is at the new birth, that is when we “get it” and what we get is a revelation of the fact that it is Jesus who is Lord of all, and our Savior. It is He that is the Light, the Truth, the Way that leads us through the darkness, and the lies, of this world, and delivers us from the kingdom of Satan, who is the god you worship. If you haven’t had this revelation, then Jesus says you have believed a lie and are doomed to hell. You can not make yourself a god by a simple declaration no more than you can make yourself a tree by saying you are a tree. You may believe it, but you have only made a fool of yourself.

If we believe there is such a thing as truth, then we have to believe there is such a thing as lies. For truth to be truth it has to be singular and stand alone, apart from everything else. Truth is unique, it is exclusive. If you say you have the truth, and I say I have the truth, one of us is a liar, or maybe we are both liars, but we can not both have the truth and believe differently. If I have a fish bowl and it is filled with beautiful gems, but they are really only cut glass. Then One real, expensive, precious, authentic gem is deposited amongst the fakes and you’re asked to make a choice of only one. Unless you know something about gems, unless you have a discerning eye, unless you have inside information about what to look for, and how to identify a real gem, you may pick a phony, and be quite content with your pick, and even convince yourself that you have such discernment. The owner of the real Gem has given us a way to know which is the Real Gem. The Bible, from beginning to end is the key that unlocks the mystery of how to know THE TRUTH about the Gem. You see, the one and only Truth has been deposited into a world filled with lies, and we are ask to make our choice. You say you have picked the truth, and I say you are dead wrong, how will we know the TRUTH?

Personally, I know what I am saying here is hard to digest, but, history itself is proof of such. All of the persons with whom is referenced above all come to this intimate realization at a central moment of time. The body of human activity toward the Holy Spirit of The Father is taking root. Take a moment and just look at the cluster of intimate spiritual discovery that occurs right before and around the time of Jesus.

The reason that what you say is hard to digest is because it is not real food, it is a food substitute. And history, I will agree, is on your side, if you look at the preponderance of the evidence. The world has produced much evidence to the contrary of truth. If we go by sheer volume or weight, the odds are in your favor, but that proves nothing, if it is all lies and cut glass. Matt 13:45-46 “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant seeking beautiful pearls, who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had and bought it.” Matt 13:44 “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and hid; and for joy over it he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field.”

This intimate spiritual discovery you mention is covered heavily in Holy Scripture and we are warned of its lethal effects on our eternal health. There is no question of a very active spirit world and that we see that activity on the increase is not news to those who believe the Bible, it is all prophesied. Of course we would expect Jesus, if He really is God in the flesh, to be able to know the future, and sure enough He did and He was right, and we see the activity all around us today. 2 Cor 11:12-15 “For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into apostles of Christ. And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light . Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness, whose end will be according to their works.” 1 Tim 4:1-2 “Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons….”

Like our life itself, at some point, the awareness of our intimacy with God finally hits home…Jesus is simply saying to the world with the same message of our life at some given moment, “I get it. I am loved by a Father that loves me. I feel complete. My life is valuable. That is the truth. And, I am that truth!”

Jesus is not saying that at all. You have made this up out of your head. Please show me where this is said. What He does say is, Matt 7:21-23 “Not everyone who says to Me,’Lord, Lord ,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord , have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!” Matt 25:11-12 “Afterward the other virgins came also, saying,’Lord, Lord , open to us!’ But he answered and said, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, I do not know you.” Luke 6:46-49 “But why do you call Me ‘Lord, Lord ,’ and not do the things which I say? Whoever comes to Me, and hears My sayings and does them, I will show you whom he is like: He is like a man building a house, who dug deep and laid the foundation on the rock. And when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently against that house, and could not shake it, for it was founded on the rock. But he who heard and did nothing is like a man who built a house on the earth without a foundation, against which the stream beat vehemently; and immediately it fell. And the ruin of that house was great.” Luke 13:23-29 “And He said to them, “Strive to enter through the narrow gate, for many, I say to you, will seek to enter and will not be able. When once the Master of the house has risen up and shut the door, and you begin to stand outside and knock at the door, saying,’Lord, Lord , open for us,’ and He will answer and say to you,’I do not know you, where you are from,’ then you will begin to say, ‘We ate and drank in Your presence, and You taught in our streets.’ But He will say, ‘I tell you I do not know you, where you are from. Depart from Me, all you workers of iniquity.’ There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth, when you see Abraham and Isaac and Jacob and all the prophets in the kingdom of God, and yourselves thrust out.”

You do not understand Jesus, if you did you would not put words in His mouth, and presume to know what you do not know; you presume too much. You are deluded my friend and you need the truth. You need to find the real Pearl and let go of all those phony jewels you cherish so much, they are seductive, and they are death. Prov 6:26-28 “For by means of a harlot a man is reduced to a crust of bread; and an adulteress will prey upon his precious life. Can a man take fire to his bosom, and his clothes not be burned? Can one walk on hot coals, and his feet not be seared?”

I could go on like this with your entire letter, but what is the use. What I have given you above is enough to deliver a man from Hell, if he will believe it. Jesus is that real Jewel, all the rest are lies to rob you of what it is you are looking for. The Bible can not be mixed with any of those others beliefs, any more than the real Gem be mixed with the other fakes; even though it is among them, it stands alone, and alone it will remain. Truth can never be a part of the lie, it is absolutely impossible.

Steve Blackwell

Yes…” the Vedas, the Hindu scriptures, say, “Truth is very elusive and hard to find.” At the end of his life, Buddha said, “I’m still searching for the truth.” Mohammed wrote, “I point to the truth.” But, then Jesus comes along and he says, I AM the truth. Not, I point to it. Not I teach it. But, I am the truth. ”

At some point in time we will all come to understand the very basic reality that “WE GET IT!”….we are the way the truth about how truly close The Father’s Life lives deep within. We will come to understand, appreciate and even love the truly intimate relationship with which we share an inheritance with Jesus and The One (God) as well.

Personally, I know what I am saying here is hard to digest, but, history itself is proof of such. All of the persons with whom is referenced above all come to this intimate realization at a central moment of time. The body of human activity toward the Holy Spirit of The Father is taking root. Take a moment and just look at the cluster of intimate spiritual discovery that occurs right before and around the time of Jesus.

Like our life itself, at some point, the awareness of our intimacy with God finally hits home…Jesus is simply saying to the world with the same message of our life at some given moment, “I get it. I am loved by a Father that loves me. I feel complete. My life is valuable. That is the truth. And, I am that truth!”

This IS the message the writers of The Gospel of John discover about the purpose and meaning of the life Jesus lived. This IS the universal tone of that same gospel that continues despite our many faceted debates and disagreements.

For many, this kind of declaration of inter-dependence causes hearts to palipate and angers to rise. Why? Because we have, for far too long, used lessons of being less than great as “reasonable” the opportnity to participate in said argument, conflict and debate.

If your passion is to believe Jesus the ONLY way toward discovering the truth about how truly close you (or we are) to the Life The Father offers us eternally, then that IS the path upon which you walk. Many know that Way and (you will find) few will be walking it because your path IS your path.

The reality is most, if not all persons, will be a God Seekers directed by the family history and personal issues that lead them to such an end. All will eventually find The Love, The Life, The Way, The Truth because The One (God”s) expression of each is perfect, flawless, and penetrating.

It is admirable some people believe there place or position in life is to be a “watchman” for how “the truth” of the Gospel is portrayed. For me, such a declaration of one’s passion or direction in life expresses an inherent belief that the belief system they believe to be THE TRUTH is in fact flawed and can be harmed. It reflects more a projection of their own self view upon a omni-potent God.

Again, I repeat, (like it or not) all will eventually find The Love, The Life, The Way, The Truth because The One’s (God”s) expression of each is perfect, flawless, and penetrating. How we come to that place where we can say “I am the Truth!” is a matter of how willing we are to become One with The Father who simply wants to love us as such because he expresses us as such.

The fact is…and simply remains…”You are loved…..and loved RIGHT NOW!”

AngllHugnU2
Author of IM with God: The Journey
to the Center of The One in You

As I have said in the past, I am not going to be lured into line item battle allowing Richard Abanes a platform to defend Rick Warren. Honestly, whether or not Rick Warren was mentored by Robert Schuller has less and less weight these days, considering all the other accumulating support regarding Rick’s apostasy: his associations, his interviews, his endorsements, his theology, his aspirations, and his political ties. I think the Bible says it best, James 4:4-5 “You adulterous people, don’t you know that friendship with the world is hatred toward God? Anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God.” This is without doubt a picture of Rick Warren and his desires to incorporate the whole world into his organization, of which Robert Schuller is but a small piece of the overall picture. Rick is a worldly man building a worldly organization. His plans for world peace will fail because it is his plan for peace not God’s. The Bible tells us our problem, and our solution, in one little verse: Proverbs 16:7 “When a man’s ways please the Lord, He maketh even his enemies to be at peace with him.” You see Rick, there is nothing you can do, it is the Lord who does it. Try if you must, but the cost will be more than you can afford. The problem with the world is that it is not pleasing to the Lord, and there is nothing a man can do but repent and cry out for mercy, and “If you remove wickedness far from your tent and assign your nuggets to the dust, your gold of Ophir to the rocks in the ravines, then the Almighty will be your gold , the choicest silver for you.” Job 22:23-25.

I will continue to speak out against error, especially the error of those who are influencing vast numbers of the unwary. The truth will win out over lies, you can be sure of that, and the truth is that a great number of Church leaders and their followers are in rebellion against God and that is the reason for the sorry condition of the Church and the world. This is no secret, it is all foretold in the Bible, it was sure to come to past, and we all have our part to play, but time is running out, God’s mercy is not without end. Luke 13:6-9 He also spoke this parable: “A certain man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard, and he came seeking fruit on it and found none. Then he said to the keeper of his vineyard, “Look, for three years I have come seeking fruit on this fig tree and find none. Cut it down; why does it use up the ground?’ But he answered and said to him, ‘Sir, let it alone this year also, until I dig around it and fertilize it. And if it bears fruit, well. But if not, after that you can cut it down.”

I do have pity for Rick, and all them who just will not acknowledge the plight of these end time activities of Satan, they are very real, and very dangerous, and very easy to see, if you have eyes.

Below is a link that pretty much spells out the blindness and worldliness of what the Church has become. The pastor in this clip is a protégé of Rick Warren; this is what Church has come to.

http://blip.tv/file/593407

If what I said sounded rude, I make no apology, it is too late for that now.

Steve Blackwell

STEVE: I am puzzled by a few things though, maybe you can help me. I completely understand why someone concerned with Biblical truth would not want to be linked to Robert Schuller. But, since your own ministry is riddled with half truths, inaccuracies, and innuendos, that are very well documented by men such as, Roger Oakland, Ray Yungen, Warren Smith, and others, why are you so concerned about this statement by Robert Schuller?

RA: Kind of rude of you, don’t you think? If you want more accurate information on some of these individuals you list and material that shows where THEy have been the ones lying and deceiving everyone, I urge you to read a few of my articles. Warren Smith is one of the worst of the bunch. See my articles

http://abanes.com/warrensmith_morelies.html
http://abanes.com/warrensmith.html

http://abanes.com/cc.html

http://abanes.com/myarticles.html

– – – –
STEVE: you did not mention: Peter Drucker, C. Peter Wagner, Rupert Murdoch, and others of which their influence is more apparent, and to this list could be added Robert Schuller. This little bit of “name dropping” is more consistent with good marketing, branding, public persona, identity, and building value, than it is with preaching the Good News, and I find it unusual that a man so totally absorbed in the Kingdom of God does not even allude to Jesus or the Bible in the above list.

RA: Again, kind of rude, in my humble opinion. Why take such a nasty tone? Is that godly? is that Christ-like? Is that what you consider defending the faith? In context, Warren is talking about his spiritual mentors. That is obvious. And that would include teh men he listed. That Christ and scripture is underlying everything is a given. C’mon, stop with the games. let’s start being fair and honest about this whole thing before the Lord. Please, my brother, please. This kind of hatred and animosity that is dividing the Body of Christ for no good reason must stop.

R. Abanes

Richard,

This issue between Rick Warren and Robert Schuller has created a credibility gap that Rick desires to put to bed. I suppose that is what happens when you think that the issue at hand has to do with one’s self. This issue is not about Rick, although his actions have put him smack dab in the middle of it. This issue is not about Schuller, although I believe he relishes the spotlight. This issue is about “truth” and how these two men, among others, have accomplished more to corrupt truth than all the Judaizers and gnostics of the first and second centuries. The link between these men is but a single element of something much bigger, i.e. destroying the purity of doctrine and the preaching of truth. The thing about truth is that it always finds us out. If it weren’t for truth we could all remain wonderfully hid and think our self pure and undefiled, and who would know the difference. Our dark little world could hide us and keep us safe, but with the entrance of light all our dirty deeds flee like cockroaches for some shadow of darkness, where we think we’re hidden. We hope to keep our flawed character and detestable deceit a secret so our own goodwill and visible humanitarianism is not tarnished. For some this light can become maddening in their inability to avoid it. Oh, what we wouldn’t do to go back in time and correct this thing or that, some silly statement spoken in a moment of pride and vanity, but now what you thought would do you good, returns to dog you and show to the world that the man is flawed. That is the nature of truth.

These flashes of light produce credibility gaps for men. Our lies, deceptions, and errors cast a terrible shadow across the landscape of all our professed good intentions. It is like the flash of a camera that captures and undeniable fact, that is recorded in the books of the Almighty, and afflicts our conscience, and afflicts our friends. But, truth should be the sanctifying power for every Christian, and lead him to repentance, so that we might have pleasure before our God. Men of the world hide their mistakes, and live in darkness, and make excuses, and only imagine they are good men.

It is not my desire nor my intentions to get into a protracted battle, or prolonged debate, to help close Mr Warren’s credibility gap, when it is obvious to any discerning Christian that he is a worldly follower of Jesus. Let his life, his words, and his actions speak for themself. He has used worldly methods, to build a worldly enterprise, to make merchandise of men’s souls. Tell me, how close do you have to get to a trash fire before you smell like smoke? The point is, Rick reeks of the smell of this trash fire we call the world. The Bible is very clear on the subject of Christians and the world, need I quote the passages? They are to be in a continual process of purging and purifying of the world, not the embracing of the world, as we see in Mr Warren. We are to shun the mere appearance of evil (the world), loathing even the garment spotted by the flesh and polluted by their sensuality. Jude 23 AMP. The only acceptable solution is repentance, it is the only solution that has ever been available to Christians. This is not a Warren/Schuller issue, this is an issue of the whole loaf being leavened, and there is no debate that will solve the problem. For you to convince otherwise is impossible, because for me to do that I would have to deny the One who bought me with His blood, and I will never do that! The Church is in a state of apostasy and Rick Warren and Robert Schuller are both loud voices in this end time movement, and I am just a foot soldier obeying the call of my Lord, through the mouth of Jude, to earnestly contend for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints. I will not get pulled into some minor scrimmage of useless debate over documented details and re-fight a battle that has already been won. There are bigger battles and other fronts. It is the remnant that I am trying to reach, not those church people who have sold out to the world, as Mr Warren and Mr Schuller have clearly done.

Steve Blackwell

Steve: Rick’s wife making the statement she did carries a lot of weight in my book, especially when it considered in light of all the other verbal gymnastics Rick is fond of using in his attempts to muddy spiritual waters. What Kay said does not mean that Rick simply observed through books and T.V. some of the things Schuller was doing, it means what it says and what she wanted others to believe at the time it was written, that they had a face-to-face with Schuller, and Schuller validates it in his own words.

RA: I very much suggest that you please read this article on my web cite http://abanes.com/warren_schuller.html

It is the truth about Warren and Schuller from beginning to end, including that silly Kay comment that everyone is blowing out of proportion. And, BTW, you are reading intro Hay’s comments something that is not actually there. It is an assumption you are making. Kay and Rick read what I have explained as a pseudo-biographer of his, and someone who has discussed his doctrines at length and what you read at my site regarding his relationship to Schuller is true.

Your only alternative at this point is to say that neither Rick nor Kay know their own history, and they have no idea what they actually meant by their words, or they are both straight up liars.

Please read the article and do research that provides direct quotes and documented history.

TY

Richard Abanes

Bryan,

In the world there is a great competition going on for “truth.” This seems especially true of Christians who say, “truth is over here or that it is over there.” The Bible reassures us that truth can be known for sure regardless of all the purveyors marketing there particular flavor of a cheapened product. Truth today is covered over in many ways, not least of which is lying. You have pointed me to a web site of Richard Abanes. Mr. Abanes site validates nothing, he is highly biased in favor of Rick Warren and he can not be trusted due to his vested interest in personal gain. What kind of evidence is that, a member of Rick’s Church writing a book in defense of his pastor’s honor, of which he stands to profit nicely by increased book distribution, and because of his close acquaintance; even a child can see his words are tainted. We all know how money distorts truth, don’t we? And, Mr. Abanes book should be looked at as a paid reprisal, no different than a mercenary, to discredit a book by another member of Rick’s congregation George Mair, A Life With Purpose, which was produced as more of a tribute to Rick, but revealed some things Rick found offensive, so the man was attacked; therefore Abanes’ testimony, in my opinion, is tainted and smells of corruption. Even your support and recommendations of such a man lends a certain degree of likeness and identity to your own character. Bad company corrupts good morals. My advise to you is to separate yourself from the likes of Warren and Abanes. His book appears to be a lot of overkill; covering a pound of truth with ten pounds of half truths and innuendoes.

You also say, on another site, that, “Hardly any of the critics of Warren know anything about the person they are criticizing in detail….” Are we allowed to assume at this point that you have inside information that could clear him of all accusations? Or, are we to conclude that we can not use discernment unless a personal relationship is developed? Are you saying that we are not allowed to listen to his words and read his writings and draw any conclusions from them? Well, if this is the case let us close every pulpit and lock the doors of every court of justice. As far as knowing the details of Rick’s personal life, unless you share with us what those details are we must rely on written material and video, and from these we compare to Scripture and draw conclusions, this is called discernment.

Rick’s wife making the statement she did carries a lot of weight in my book, especially when it considered in light of all the other verbal gymnastics Rick is fond of using in his attempts to muddy spiritual waters. What Kay said does not mean that Rick simply observed through books and T.V. some of the things Schuller was doing, it means what it says and what she wanted others to believe at the time it was written, that they had a face-to-face with Schuller, and Schuller validates it in his own words.

You have probably heard the saying “you are what you eat.” This saying is very true for the Christian. What I mean is that Christian men and women have been eating from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil for far too long and have become fat and lazy. They have rejected the very restrictive diet that has been given to us by our Lord. We have went to the world for answers and the world was more than glad to accommodate us. What we see as the Church of God today is no more than a modern Tower of Babel; it is product of men, for man. Man’s devotion to God must be grand in design, bringing recognition to his abilities, and punctuated by his impressive dedication to the Almighty. But, the only problem is that God never required us to do that. In all of our business, and doing something for the Lord, all we have managed to do is to build a magnificent edifice of lies, and the Lord rejects it, every bit of it.

If Rick wants everyone to accept what he has produce all he has to do is to justify it by the Bible, if God accepts it then I and many others will accept it. We ask nothing more of him than we do for any of those who sit in our own meetings, and Paul is stricter still when he says that if anyone calls himself a brother and brings not this Gospel (according to the Bible) then do not accept him into your home, eat a meal with him, or wish him Godspeed. Paul thinks this is a very critical matter, shouldn’t we? Part of what Rick should know in his desire for purpose is that we are sanctified by a living “truth,” this is God’s true purpose concerning the world. The preaching of this Living Truth by a few poor fishermen overturned the religion of priests, philosophers, and emperors. It altered the destiny of man; it gave fresh life and definition to the idea of civilization; it infused a fresh and healing element into society; it entered families, and broke entrenched habits; it entered the area of literature, and shed upon it a revealing light; it entered the halls of legislature, and improved the laws of nations, and truth is, in these last days, holding it head high, and is courageous in the onslaught of evil; surrounded and beaten down, and “fallen in the street” it marches on even crippled, and will march on, to the very last man; it can be pushed down, but not defeated.

If Rick were just your average businessman peddling shoes or computers and we were taken in by some slick marketing scheme, we are the worse off for not having discerned the truth, and become the owner of some cheap merchandise. Time will remedy this problem and this incident should teach us to be more cautious. But, Rick is not peddling just any merchandise, he is selling “truth” itself. If he is wrong in his presentation, by cheapening or compromising the quality of truth, time will not remedy the problem, time becomes our enemy. If Rick is wrong then his deception has eternal consequences. So, where does the problem really lay, is it with those who hold up a high standard of truth, and make demands of the consciences of men, and who plead for caution? If these men are wrong in some degree, which we can be sure they are, have they hindered the progression of truth, NO! Any true seeker of truth, any of the “called out ones” will respond, and will be helped along in their search, and truth will be purer yet, by his alertness to deception and slick marketing. If there is an error, let it be on the side of zealousness for truth, and not on the side of tolerance and compromise.

This is my response to your comment. I do not expect that you will be swayed by this argument, as few are, but maybe one will be, and this response is for him or her. The men who God has raised up to answer these assaults on truth have done a very good job and their material is available through Lighthouse Publishing for any who want well documented facts and are concerned for “TRUTH.”

Steve Blackwell

Religious Pluralism does NOT mean uniting all faiths to Warren. This is gross misrepresentation which I have documentation of. It means that we can and do hold vastly opposing views, but we can be civil and respectful to those who believe differently instead of nasty and deceitful and even violent.

Here is what Warren has ACTUALLY said it means and a few other things:
Warren says that he recently told a group of business leaders, “The future of the world is not secularism. It’s religious pluralism… The world is becoming more religious, not less. Christianity is growing around the world at a rapid pace through conversion, and Islam is growing at a rapid [rate] due to births…We’re going to have to minister in a context where we…learn how to get along.”

To that end, Warren is trying to increase civility in the world, and he is calling Christians to act on their own teachings. “I think we need a second Reformation in the church about how we behave,” he asserts. “The first Reformation was about creeds. I think the second Reformation needs to be about deeds…If Christians of all stripes…would just practice what we know Jesus taught, the world would be an incredibly different place.”

He calls this second Reformation a “mobilization.” Saddleback is developing a “peace plan” and worldwide mission to promote reconciliation through service. The church is still learning how to succeed. “We’ve learned a thousand ways that don’t work,” Warren confesses, “but we did learn two or three dozen ways that do work.” During 2008, the church intends to make its methods available to any church.
http://www.cathedral.org/cathedral/centennial/index.shtml

Christians must be civil to everyone, even their worst enemies. THIS IS WARREN’S definition of pluralism.

As further proof, Warren has stated unequivocally on a number of occasions that relativism is ignorant and that the New Age is wrong and that Jesus is God and respectuflly that other religions are incomplete and in error and that our eternal salvation depends on what we do with Jesus. In his invitation to salvation online at http://www.purposedriven.com, he says these words:
“As a young man I studied all the major religions of the world. One thing I discovered was that all the major religions point to truth. For example, the Vedas, the Hindu scriptures, say, “Truth is very elusive and hard to find.” At the end of his life, Buddha said, “I’m still searching for the truth.” Mohammed wrote, “I point to the truth.” But, then Jesus comes along and he says, I AM the truth. Not, I point to it. Not I teach it. But, I am the truth. ”

Note that he says that other religions just say they point to truth (doesn’t mean they have all the truth by any means and Warren is clear many times that they don’t). But, they do have some truth. And anyone who says differently is a liar. Even the Wiccans have some truth unfortunately (for example they teach the importance of stewardship of nature that God told Adam to do). This is what makes it harder to distinguish which religion is closest to God’s will.
Bryan

Kay saying this does not in the LEAST mean that Rick met Schuller or was his mentor.
“He had a profound influence on Rick,” Kay says. “We were captivated by his positive appeal to nonbelievers. I never looked back.”

It means that Rick observed through books or on TV some things that Schuller was doing and thought that certain things he was doing were a good idea, NOT ALL by any means.

I have been reading the Bible, many spiritual books, Warren and his critics and I have to say that most of the tactics of the critics of Warren are very deceitful and often times exactly the same tactics that evolutionists use to discredit creation and intelligent design. We have no business using the tactics of Satan to accuse even our worst enemy. NONE of the prophets in the Bible or Jesus used misrepresentation or lies or anything of the sort when criticizing those in wrong. There is not one critic anywhere so far that is really being honest about Warren. I’ve read probably 100 articles by all the main critics and found horribly deceitful things in them. The best by far is Berit Kjos but she also misrepresents things a lot.

I highly recommend this site to see some of the deceit by the critics that is so common:
http://abanes.com/myarticles.html

Bryan

Great response. You showed humility by admitting the error, diligence by correcting the error, and consistency by remaining focused on the greater task. The greater task is exposing the growing heretical doctrines which abound in the internet. Unfortunately Rick has failed to consistently use his platform to expound the full unadulterated gospel. Sadly with increasing frequency he leans toward compromise and a one world religion.

Continue to “cry aloud and spare not” my friend.

Great job! You are doing what is right by posting the correction, but still holding Rick’s feet the fire concerning his agenda. I am reading “Faith Undone” by Roger Oakland, and would highly recommend it to anyone who needs or wants to have their eyes open to the truth about the Emerging Church.

I think that the truth is coming out now and Rick Warren is getting more bold in his agenda, which I believe is to unite all faiths into a global ecumenical unit, when last week he made the statement that “the future of the world lies in religious pluralism.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.