Welcome to the online home of Tim Challies, blogger, author, and book reviewer.

Tim Challies

Challies on FacebookChallies on Twitter

Are...You...Ready, Ready, READY?!?

I was doing my morning rounds of the Internet and came across an article at Pastors.com, a site run by Rick Warren as a resource to, you guessed it, pastors (He seems to resource them by strongarming them into purchasing endless amounts of his sermons, his books and so on). The article is part of Warren’s weekly “Ministry Toolbox” and in this particular article he is writing about nationwide conference calls he is hosting to discuss his 40 Days of Purpose program. Anyone who wants to can join this conference call and listen to Warren share what God has been doing through this program and listen to a Bible study on one God’s five purposes for our lives.

The article Warren wrote to describe this program is really quite funny. It reminds me of some of the spam that infiltrates my mailbox every day. He continually alternates between standard text and bold. When he’s really excited he does bold italics.

We’re preparing for a time of nation-wide revival!

Right now there are a number of factors that are tipping the scales toward a possible national spiritual awakening, and I’d like to talk with you about partnering together to accomplish God’s purposes at this historic moment.

But now 15,000 other churches have used 40 Days of Purpose as a tool and over 20 million people have read The Purpose-Driven Life. This is a significant number when you consider it only takes 2% of a culture to change it.

My suggestion is that you invite a key business leader from your church - one who might serve as your 40 Days of Purpose director - to join you in this phone call. Even better, you can put me on speakerphone and invite your entire leadership team to be a part of this call.

It reminds me of a monster truck rally. “God is sending revivial, revival, revival! Join my conference call or you’ll miss, miss, miss out, out, out!”

Like everything else Warren writes about his program, this article is chock full of unsubstantiated numbers. 15,000 churches have done his 40 Days of Purpose program and another 15,000 will be doing it this fall. 20 million people have read the book! 2% of a culture will change it! 100 denominations are doing the program! And on it goes…

The long and the short of it is that Warren has suddenly realized that God is going to begin a nationwide spiritual revival based on his Purpose Driven Life. He must feel good to be the instigator in history’s first revival that bears no mention of sin and repentance.

Of course we all know that God always chooses to use poor theology, poor methodology and terrible use of Scripture to reach people, right? God approves of methods that minimize the gospel in favor of humanism and the Spirit’s leading to being driven by purpose…doesn’t He? God is going to change a nation based on people muttering “I believe in you and I receive you.”

Mr. Warren, I suspect you are starting to display the hubris that all humans are prone to slip into when they receive the kind of laud that has been given you. If your 40 Days of Purpose program triggers a nationwide revival, I will eat my hat. Yes, you heard it here first. I will take my Toronto Maple Leafs hat and ingest it before witnesses. As a matter of fact, I’ll eat your hat too if you wish. If God chooses to send Revival to the land, I will rejoice - but I guarantee it will not be on the basis if your book.