Here is John Piper justifying his decision to invite Rick Warren to the 2010 Desiring God conference:
Piper is shooting this video after having spoken to Warren on the phone, and sounds convinced. Piper says:
“I’m gonna need help to know why I should feel bad about this decision.”
Piper claims that Warren:
- rejects the emergent church
- memorises Scripture every week
- preaches for an hour
- doesn’t do any drama in worship
- plants a church a year
- rejects the prosperity gospel
- has zero faith in politics
Firstly, taking Rick Warren at his word is no easy task.
Have a look at this video on how Warren has angered both sides of the homosexuality debate. Warren’s utter hypocrisy is enough to make any man marvel – surely Piper is aware of this?
Piper claims Warren believes in salvation only in Jesus Christ – how does he explain Warren’s comment that it takes “more than faith” to be saved? And Warren’s comments about the “test” God sets every believer?
Warren may memorise Scripture and preach for an hour, but so what – even Satan has memorised Scripture, as we see in Luke 4!
Piper claims Warren doesn’t “do drama in worship” – how does he explain Warren’s dramatic and badly thought-out comparison between young Christian devotees of Jesus and the Hitler Youth?
Piper claims Warren rejects the prosperity gospel and plants a church a year, yet Warren has both counselled Reform Jewish leaders on how to make their synagogues grow and told practicioners of Judaism they are going to Hell – well, which is it? How can Warren avoid the charges of hypocrisy and opportunism? Of what real value is a church that follows Warren’s model?
Piper claims that Warren sees no value in politics, and doesn’t get involved – if that’s the case then why is Warren going on a political show to discuss politics and directly speaking about President Obama’s policies?
Piper says that he doesn’t want to be ‘separatist’ or treat Warren as an enemy, yet refusing to share a platform with Warren is hardly being deliberately bellicose. Piper himself has written polemics against N.T. Wright – surely of all people he understands that opposing someone’s ideas and standing up for the truth is not ‘separatist’?
Piper claims Warren’s discipling is ‘transformative’, and claims that Warren puts him to shame. Piper says that Warren disciplines people in his church – why then did Warren not discipline porn baron Rupert Murdoch, who is closely connected with his church?
Piper says at the end of the video “I hope we can disagree over who we can hang out with”.
Indeed we can.