Tom Bartlett arrived at
One of the first people to be replaced was Joe Owings, a retired pastor. Owings and others left the church because the new pastor implemented Rick Warren’s
And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power: That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God. (1Co 2:4-5)
Because the wisdom of man is no match for the spiritual warfare unleashed on the minds of mortals who would repent and turn towards God, Paul was adamant that our faith be sourced in the power of God. This is accomplished by preaching in the power of the Spirit. Your faith should not stand with enticing sounds from man’s guitars either, but the seductive power of music is often used in religions that depend on sensuality for producing initiates and controlling them. Mix in a heavy diet of “psychological techniques,”[iv]or man’s wisdom, for behavior modification in place of doctrine, and they’ll never know what hit them.
While it is tragic to consider hundreds being deluded into believing they are experiencing saving grace, it is made possible by what may turn out to be the largest landgrab since the Catholic church ruled the kingdoms of
What happens to an original congregation, a congregation that was probably made to feel guilty for lower attendance, guilty for not utilizing their resource to reach the community, guilty for not taking out a second mortgage to upgrade the sound system and lighting, guilty for expecting a shepherd in their senior years in the church they sacrificed to build; what happens to them? “Well,” says their pastor Bartlett, “that’s why there’s different churches for different folks.”[v]  And, no, we’re not exaggerating about the guilt tripping tactics that are used to get members to leverage themselves until they’re ripe for a corporate-style, hostile takeover. Here it is from his eminence, Rick Warren:
“Every church has to make the decisionâ€¦. Is it going to live for itself, or is it going to live for the world that Jesus died for?”[vi]
[i] Martin Bashir and Deborah Apton, “Rick Warren and Purpose-Driven Strife”:
Pastor’s Unconventional Approach Inspires Some, Alienates Others,
ABC News Nightline. March 7, 2007
[ii] Bashir and Apton, “Rick Warren and Purpose-Driven Strife” http://abcnews.go.com/Nightline/story?id=2914953&page=2
[iv] Ibid. 3.
[v] Ibid. 2.
[vi] Ibid. 4. Owings describes content, PDL sermons.