Playing the Pharisee Card

In some discussion amongst friends this morning it became known that Rick Warren, on Twitter, has said:

“‘It drives Pharisees nuts to watch God keep blessing ministries they ridicule & despise.God’s sovereignty is often humorous.’ ‘It takes ALL kinds of churches to reach all kinds of people. If Jesus is honored & lives transformed, I like how you do it!’ ‘”Father,thank u for hiding the truth from those who think themselves so wise&clever,&revealing it to the CHILDLIKE”Mt11:25’.”

As the day wore on, the angrier I became about this and so determined to address it in tonight’s post. However, one of these friends posted something this evening that addressed this comment very well. I cannot think of any way to improve on what my brother Daniel Neades wrote, therefore, instead of me writing a post about this, I am linking to his.

I want to say one thing about this though before you go to read that post. I have been opposed to the Purpose Driven paradigm for many years and have been addressing this from many different angles. However, today through my listening to Chris Rosebrough’s fine exposition on the unbiblical nature of all aspects of the Seeker Sensitive movement here, and then praying and researching to get ready to address Rick Warren’s comments above, I believe God has given us that ‘point of deception’ that marks these Seeker Sensitive churches as unbiblical. That ‘point of deception’ is that the Seeker Sensitive gurus actually lead pastors to approach transitioning their churches from biblical and pastoral in nature to CEO/Business model store fronts meant to be churches for the unchurched. The deception is that they are lead to believe that they have been given this mandate by God via an extra-biblical vision to do this so they must view all criticism and disagreements with that vision as invalid and something to be attacked and run out of their churches. All those who oppose the vision in these churches are dealt with as people to be ‘run off’ or ‘nullified.’ I have seen this in operation myself and left my old church as the pastor and his cohorts were getting ready to deal with me this way.

In any case, I suggest you listen to Chris Rosebrough’s radio show exposition of the Church transition process here then go read this fine post by my friend Daniel Neades.

Soli Deo Gloria!



9 thoughts on “Playing the Pharisee Card

  1. Hello Mike, thank you for the ping-back and the kind words. I didn’t mean to pre-empt you — sorry about that!

    I wasn’t actually planning to write that blog post…I was simply going to reference Todd Wilken’s great article, and then leave it at that. But, I added a Rick Warren intro, and the rest followed on naturally.

    Do feel free to chime in with your comments!


  2. Pingback: Fighting for the Faith: The Cult-Like Hostile Takeover Tactics of the Purpose-Driven Church Transitioning Seminar « Kit’s Blog

  3. Hi Mike, this is my post here. Thanks for this article and I found this to be the very few unapologetic opposition to the whole seeker sensitive church movement (I personally believe both Purpose Driven Life and missional church are logical progression of the seeker sensitive movement in apostasy)

    Just one question though. I’m not if anyone has heard Acts 5:33-39 being used as attempts to justify the whole seeker sensitive movement is biblical by saying that “this passage says whatever unbiblical movement will disappear. Our movement has withstood time and with rising number of followers, therefore it must be biblical.”

    Does anyone know any study on the true contexts of this passage in response? Thanks YBIC


  4. Joel,

    Talk about taking Scripture out of context in the attempted usage of Acts 5:33-39 to justify the hostile takeover of Churches to turn them into what is unbiblical! To try to minister with this mindset means to try all sorts of things and God will bless that which is HIs and stop that which is not. The Bible also says that God gives people over to what they idolize when they refuse to hear Him and repent. God will never bless that which involves deceit, lying, and idolatry. Just because these “churches” grow does not mean they are being blessed. Blessing would be the growth in Spiritual Maturity and Christlikeness of those who were fleshly before. What sense does it make to simply grow in numbers when there is no depth at all, but, in fact, these people are taught that it is okay to remain fleshly…

    In Christ

    Mike Ratliff


  5. If these seeker friendly churches are Gods plan, why is it that they are loosing members? Actually the members they probably are loosing are those who see the deceptions. The other reason its not working is they are running out of money.

    Robert Schuller is in the same boat,

    I may be brushing with a broad stroke here, but I think it maybe fair to say its not about the church, its about the business. Its the seeker methods, business methods that make it successful. Most have large salaries, while families are going broke and loosing jobs.

    A local pastor at a mega style church in my area, took another pastorate job in Georgia, did not give a notice, just took the position without the his church knowing it. He was already making a six figure income along with another high salary income from a firm that grow and build “successful” churches…maybe they are taking what Jesus said to literally, “I will build my church.”

    This might be a bit of subject, but I fear that Rick Warren are about the model and method more than anything else. Money drives our emotions and what we think is the right thing to do….look at Al Gore, making money off a false theory.


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