John Piper, Rick Warren redux.

A few years ago those who observed that John Piper was heading down a bad road when he began validating Mark Driscoll were all but crucified by those who thought the ones raising the concern were jumping to conclusions.

But then the next shoe dropped: Piper invited Rick Warren to speak at last year’s Desiring God conference (and I noticed there were a lot less voices being raised from the defend-Piper-at-all-costs crowd). Rick Warren was unable to make it to that conference but this year Piper is traveling to Warren’s church.

This link contains the video (and other information) for John Piper’s upcoming Desiring God regional conference on “Meditations of a Christian Hedonist” being held at Rick Warren’s Saddleback church.

It appears that the slippery slope some of us were talking about over the past few years is rapidly turning into a cliff.

Will Piper surprise us and preach a non-compromising sermon on Christ and Him crucified to those who’ve been nursing on Warren’s  messages for years (we can only hope and pray), or will things only get worse as the years go by and perhaps next year we’ll see an endorsement of Thomas S. Monson? I guess time will only tell.

Nasty, snarky, condescending, and vitriolic comments will not be approved.

16 thoughts on “John Piper, Rick Warren redux.

  1. Piper is a bridge builder, and I don’t fault him for that. He tries to help those who disagree by, well, building bridges and going from there.

    I really think that Piper has made a fundamental error, however, in his approach. It is one thing to meet and talk over matters. It’s another thing to share pulpits.

    Here’s a blog post on where Piper’s approach breaks down:

    John Piper Invites Rick Warren to Speak at Conference

  2. It is disturbing to see Piper and Warren being so chummy. Warren would benefit from Piper’s counsel and if that were the only thing taking place through their correspondence therein, it would be good news.

    What is unfortunate, however, is that Piper’s involvement with Warren appears to be an endorsement of Warren and his teaching/theology. I’m not sure how I feel about the “building bridges” analogy that is so frequently used because I believe that Warren’s following has been given to him – as God gives them over to their own lusts/desires, a.k.a. wrath of abandonment. Warren’s following follow him because he has the message that they want to hear.

    Warren is an educated man. He is obviously very familiar with different versions of canon and exercises this knowledge in his art of deception. Warren hand picks verses the same as a cook chooses among a variety of spices as a means and method to tailor his message in the light of scripture. Nevermind it is often done out of context and without remorse of altering God’s word.

    Let’s hope that Piper is influencing Warren and not the other way around.

    Irrespective of what happens, let us hope for God’s will to be performed in a manner that most glorifies Him.

    May it all be for His glory,
    W.

  3. Public affiliation with false teachers and heretics rarely brings repentance to the false teacher; it nearly always brings a once solid teacher down to the muck and mire of providing cover or implicit endorsement to the one needing repentance. It appears those who lead huge churches tend to flock together (with some notable exceptions, thank God) and drift toward error. Accountability is desperately needed for these men – they will be held to account by Almighty God, it would be a favor to them now if they would receive rebuke from godly men.

  4. I believe Ingrid Schlueter put it best:

    “The followers of John Piper are in deep denial. They believe that because Piper has never written or spoken anything heterodox, that he must be trustworthy for all time. That is why I wrote my piece on evangelical Bridgers. These are the most dangerous men of all. Blinded by pride and their own sense of importance in the scheme of things, (and ironically, often claiming newfound humility), they end up bridging the gap between false teachers like Rick Warren and biblical Christianity. John Piper has chosen to become a Bridger. My prayers are with those who will blindly cross that bridge while loyally carrying their Piper banners all the way.”

  5. Wow this is disturbing news! I agree with Davis. When Piper appears at or speaks at Warren’s church he then endorses his false teaching. Followers of Piper will now think its ok to listen to some of Warren’s teachings. NOt very smart of John Piper at all. Dangerous this is. (In my yoda voice)

  6. Thanks for bringing that back into our view, Keith. Piper is too swayed by how wonderfully Doug Wilson speaks – a danger we are warned about by the Apostle Paul in his disclaimer that he did NOT come with persuasive speech, not wanting men’s faith to rest on the words of man. Truth be spoken, in plain speech, that the faith of men will be in God!

  7. Not too long ago Piper came here to a Boston and preached at a church that has become notoriously liberal. Many of us were asking the same question, “Will Piper surprise us and preach a non-compromising sermon on Christ and Him crucified?” Will he be faithful and preach to this audience the message that they so desperately need to hear? He did not. He just punted the gospel away.

  8. Jude – appears Piper is swayed by far too many people, rather than the Word of God. Sad to see folks sink into the swamp of false teaching for the pleasure of sinful man.

  9. I’m not sure how many of you decided to listen to the audio files from the Think conference, but if you did, I don’t think you would call what John Piper is doing a “slippery slope… rapidly turning into a cliff” quite yet.

    Depending on whether or not Piper himself even remembers, in one of the panel sessions from the national conference, Piper stated that one of the reasons he’s holding this upcoming conference at Saddleback is so that he can publicly address to Rick Warren, the questions he has from reading The Purpose Driven Life. In short, what should have took place (supposedly) at the national conference will take place this late April.

    I’m not sure if this will make a difference in the respective conclusions each of you have already made about Piper though.

  10. Bo – I – and I dare say many of us here – prayerfully hope Mr. Piper stands tall for the Truth of God when he goes to Saddleback. His performance in recent years does not give us human reason to have such hope. When he’s had false teachers (Doug Wilson, Rick Warren) come to his church, he did not “withstand them to their faces” as Paul did Peter; what makes us think he will do so now? His entire theology of “Christian hedonism” leads to this man-centered view, as it puts our enjoyment of Christ at a higher plane than our desire to bring Him honor and glory – which is by our obedience (by His Spirit) to all He commanded. Not by playing fast and loose with His Truth or those who do so.

  11. Manfred:

    Very well said indeed. I have also taken serious issue with Piper’s “Christian Hedonism” doctrine from the start as he has initially defined and described it (not as others choose to define or interpret it). And I agree with your conclusion on this.

  12. I agree with all that Ingrid S. wrote about this subject.
    Jesus told us what would happen in His parable. The WHOLE lump (not “everything except my safe little corner of Reformed Evangelicalism”) becomes fully leavened.

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