I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile. (Romans 1:16)

Faithfully Laundering Rick Warren’s Purpose Driven Church Of Man-Love

Mark Kelly, Saddleback spin doctor for Rick Warren, whines on his aptly named A Rick Warren Blog:

One of the most ironic criticisms made of Rick Warren is that he has used “secular marketing ploys” to create a large congregation and sell a mountain of books. (Online source)

*Shaking my head furiously* Huh, “ironic”?! I’ll just ignore the false accusation ascribing a possible motive why someone like me criticizes Warren’s most obvious pragmatic and man-centered approach to growing a church which Kelly throws in at the end as a red herring. However, it would seem that Kelly isn’t too familiar with Purpose Driven.com as yet:

Warren is well-known as a spiritual and social entrepreneur. Peter Drucker called him “the inventor of perpetual revival” and Forbes magazine has written, “If Warren’s church was a business it would be compared with Dell, Google or Starbucks.” (Online source)

Now let us think for a moment, O wherever would we be able to come up with the idea that Warren’s approach to growing a church could be “compared with Deli, Google or Starbucks”? Or that Warren himself was an “entrepreneur” whom Peter Drucker would then speak of. Pastor Bob Dewaay’s insightful comment is very helpful here as well:

The Purpose Driven movement can cite this business management guru approvingly only because they have a faulty theology of human ability. For example, Rick Warren says, “It is my deep conviction that anybody can be won to Christ if you discover the key to his or her heart. . . . It may take some time to identify it. But the most likely place to start is with the person’s felt needs.” If this were true one could use modern marketing principles to sell people on their need for Christian religion and convince them to convert in order to find satisfaction of their felt needs. But it is not true. (Online source)

Now for those who may not know who the late Peter Drucker was Forbes.com fills us in on this “Management Guru”:

How would we have managed without him? Peter F. Drucker, who taught many generations of American managers everything they knew about running a business, died today at 95 at his home in Claremont, CA.
(Online source)

And among those “American managers [he taught] everything they knew about running a business” was a certain Rick Warren who readily admits, “he’s my mentor. I’ve spent 20 years under his tutelage learning about leadership from him” (Online source). In fact at the same event where Warren stated clearly that he was tutored and mentored by Drucker for “20 years” he also admits his church is a “product” he created:

I started Saddleback in my home 25 years ago with my wife…we grew the church to over 10,000… But we wanted to prove it’s not a church… The implication is that if a church is this big, it must be because of marketing. No, it’s because of changed lives… The only guy I know who got this was a New York Times reporter who did an article on Saddleback a while back. And I like the way he said it. He said, “Marketing creates a message in order to sell a product. But Warren’s doing the exact opposite – he’s creating products in order to push a message.” Well, it’s true. I plead guilty to that. But that’s not marketing, that’s taking the message and trying to get it out as many ways as possible instead of creating a message to sell your product. (Online source)

No Rick, this is marketing. Whether one creates a message to sell an existing product, O I dunno, like say like a book to tell other pastors how they can have their own Saddleback, or whether you first “create products” like Saddleback to advance your Purpose Driven delusion, it’s still marketing as taught by Management Guru Peter Drucker. *Reaching for my driver’s license* Nope just checking to make sure, some of us weren’t born yesterday.

Now to be fair to Kelly, in the earlier quote he sees the “irony” here as, “the critics use the same marketing strategies to communicate their criticism.” Well, here’s one critic who’s never been mentored by any business gurus nor have I employed any “marketing strategies.” And I can tell you that no matter how many times Kelly spins Rick Warren’s CEO-Peter Drucker people-pleasing pragmatism passing for the gospel through his spiritual Maytag washer Warren’s Purpose Driven semi-pelagian twisted Arminianism still comes out just as dirty.

I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile.