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Rick Warren Responds To Lighthouse Trails

Just over a month ago, Lighthouse Trails Research posted a press release at their web site entitled Rick Warren Teams Up With New-Age Guru Ken Blanchard. I do not know how many people read this press release, but one person who did was Rick Warren. Richard Abanes, who is a Warren apologist and has a forthcoming book entitled Rick Warren and the Purpose that Drives Him, has posted Warren’s response on his site. You can read it here.

Abanes first writes about Ken Blanchard’s errors in discernment (which are serious enough that one could legitimately wonder if Blanchard even understands the Gospel). He then posts Warren’s email to Lighthouse Trails.

A short summary of Warren’s email is that George Mair, who wrote an unauthorized biography of Rick Warren, is a complete fraud and liar. He took the facts about Warren that are publically available and made up any other information he needed. I picked up on some of this in my review of the book, suggesting: “In the end, it seems that this is a book designed to cash-in on the success of The Purpose Driven Life…” and “the author also makes several factual mistakes and I was often left with the impression that he had filled-in details about Warren’s life where such information was missing.” Warren discredits Mair because he is the source for Lighthouse Trail’s information about Ken Blanchard. Warren also denies that he has ever had so much as a single private one-on-one discussion with Robert Schuller.

[Note: it has come to light that Mair disputes that there are many errors in the book. Read this.]

I will withhold comment on most of what this email contains until I have read Abanes’ book, which is sure to provoke a great amount of discussion at this site and elsewhere. But Warren’s email seems to confirm what I believe and have tried to make clear: Rick Warren is a sincere man. He sincerely believes that “Purpose Driven” is biblical. He is not knowingly and deliberately trying to tear apart the church (as some may have you believe).

But I will suggest, once more, than a man can be sincere, but sincerely wrong.

I do respect Rick Warren for his zeal and his desire to lead people to Christ. But I still feel, after a close examination of his books in the light of Scripture, that he is doing harm to the church through his Purpose Driven philosophies, through his ecumenism and through various other avenues.

A couple of small points. Warren chastises Lighthouse Trails for not contacting him before posting the press release. But I know of many, many people who have tried to contact Warren with no success. But in this case they probably should have because of the credibility (or lack thereof) of the source. I would also suggest that this situation does not fall under the teachings of Jesus outlined in Matthew 18 as Warren suggests, so that Lighthouse Trails did not err in that regard.

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