Common Myths about Purpose Driven

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BJClark

Puritan Board Doctor
ChristopherPaul,


What life transformation were you looking for?

Did you ponder and seriously consider each question asked?

Did you allow God to work in your heart as you read through each chapter?

Or were you looking for a quick fix of a specific issue?


Did you ponder:

"I am not an accident" Isaiah 44:2

Living on purpose is the path to peace Isaiah 26:3

There is more to life than just here and now 1 John 2:17

Life is a test and a trust Luke 16:10

This world is not my home. 2 Cor. 4:18

It's all for Him Romans 11:36

Did you really consider the questions based on your relationship with Christ and your walk with God? :

I know that God uniquely created me. What areas of my personality, background, and physical appearance am I struggling to accept?

What iwould my family and friends say is the driving force of MY life? What do I want it to be?

Since I was made to last forever, what is one thing I should stop doing and the one things I should start doing today?

How should the fact that life on earth is just a temporary assignment change the way I am living right now?

What common task could I start doing as if I were doing it directly for Jesus?

Since God knows what is best, in what areas of my life do I need to trust Him most?

What area of my life am I holding back from God?

What practical choices will I make today in order to grow Closer to God?

How can I start treating other believers like members of my own family?

Does my level of involvement in my local church demonstrate that I love and am committed to God's family?

What one step can I take today to connect with another believer at a more genuine heart to heart level?

Who do I need to restore a broken relationship with today?

What am I personally doing to protect unity in my church family now?

What is one area where I need to stop thinking MY WAY and start thinking God's way?

Those are just a few of the points to ponder and questions that we are challenged to ask ourselves in this book.

So did you really at heart level ponder and think about those things asking God to search your heart and to show you areas He is wanting you to make changes in your life? These are not surface type questions, these need to be seriously considered and meditated on. As the Psalmist says "I meditate on your word day and night." meaning I think about it, I ponder it, I ask God to show me the truth about it. I desire deeply to know the answers to these questions. Did you do that? Or did you only look at them on the surface and not dig deeper for answers?
 

tcalbrecht

Puritan Board Junior
Originally posted by Robin
Living 30 minutes from Saddleback, the aire of false-humility; self-sufficient religiosity and general silliness permeates. The Pharisees and the moneychangers in the temple court. The unfortunate sheep that don't learn to be pharisees are driven to despar with endless lists of "to do's". (Again, see the SB website.)

"false-humility, ..." You can tell all that from 30 minutes away? Wow, you are an amazing person. Being 30 minutes away you must have a better grasp of their "to do" list cuz I couldn't find anything on their web site.

Originally posted by Robin
Luckily, I regularly meet unbelievers that perceive PD and SB as a scam.

"Luckily"?? For whom? I meet unbelievers who think Christianity in general is a scam. Taking money from poor widows and using it to build fancy bulildings with pipe organs, stained glass, and all the trimmings. Paying the pastor and his staff more than the average Joe in the pew. Sending folks overseas when their is plenty of work right around here.

Unbelievers thinking the work of the Lord is a "scam" is nothing new. I wouldn't be concerned.

I would be concerned if that led to badmouthing brother Christians before unbelievers.

Also He spoke this parable to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others: "Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, 'God, I thank You that I am not like other men--extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this tax collector. I fast twice a week; I give tithes of all that I possess.' And the tax collector, standing afar off, would not so much as raise his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast, saying, 'God, be merciful to me a sinner!' I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted." (Luke 18:9-14)

Frankly, I'd be more cautious with my characterizations.

[Edited on 11-22-2005 by tcalbrecht]
 

tcalbrecht

Puritan Board Junior
Originally posted by Mudandstars
"Btw, Tom....the Christian is to not depend on feelings. Search the Scriptures tirelessly; be a Berean; test every thing. Scripture commands this, instead. (You do know Scripture teaches this, right?)"

I wish there were little comic book character icons, like maybe Captain Obvious and his loyal sidekick, Unnecessary Boy.

captain_obvious.jpg
 

alwaysreforming

Puritan Board Sophomore
You know, Bobbi, none of those questions you asked are bad questions; in fact, they're good ones!

And your responses to my particular points previously was appreciated. I can see how you're looking at the book, and I can understand why you have no problem with it, and in fact think its good.

You're bringing out the point that if people concentrated on doing what the book says to do that we'd probably be a lot better off as a Church, and as individuals. I will certainly not argue against any of those points!

I wish I wasn't so "polemical" and had such a critical spirit. I would LOVE to get on board with what all my friends are doing around this book. Something in my spirit is just "checking" me when I really start to consider its teachings.... It might be the fact that the book is wonderful at producing "good people", but does so in a way that results in more "works stemming from self-improvement" than it does "works stemming from a love of Christ." I think this book really pushes people's "hot buttons" because most Americans are so disillusioned and "empty" and really feel like they're "missing their purpose in life." I think this is a natural feeling and the book is catering to that need (I wonder if the marketing company had anything to do with that....)

But I bet in the end the way this will all play out is: most of the people will try these methods for a year or two and then realize that things are really no different than they were before the book. There will be another craze that takes first place and we'll all be talking about that.

This book seems to shout, "Do better, do better!" This usually leads to burnout and a shaking of beliefs. We'll see what happens.

May the Peace of Christ be with you, Sister! You have a great positive attitude about things; I wish I were more like you!
 

ChristopherPaul

Puritan Board Senior
Bobbi, it is ok, I am beyond PDL these days.

Who knows if I read Warren correctly, I certainly had no biases against him (as I do today) back when I read it.

The fact of the matter is, the book did little to guide me. Discipleship comes down to learning everything Jesus commanded. In other words, no matter what theological bent one has, it all comes down to rightly understanding God´s word.

Bobbi, have you read Nathan Busenitz´s review in the book Fools Gold? I just lent my book out on Friday, but I thought his review was fair and accurate.

I haven´t opened PDL up in years, and unless I am prepared to critically review it, I will not be referencing it any time soon.
 

BJClark

Puritan Board Doctor
Robin,

The only thing I have found to have cost are some of the classes they offer, many churches charge a fee to cover the cost of materials they use for such classes.

Does your church offer the Crown Financial Class? Ours does, and the Church funds part of the materials but people who take the class also pay a portion to help off set the over all cost of materials. Which they get to keep when the course is over.

Just as if they use other Bible study books, there is a fee to help cover the cost of the materials used, again that you get to keep and write in, not all churches can afford to pay out the total cost of the material

Our church did a class on Boundaries, those who took the class purchased the book, they could buy it a local book store and pay full price or they could purchase it from the church at cost, the church wasn't making any money on the book, they charged what it cost them.

So no, I don't see anything wrong with that.





[Edited on 11-22-2005 by BJClark]
 

BJClark

Puritan Board Doctor
alwaysreforming,


You're bringing out the point that if people concentrated on doing what the book says to do that we'd probably be a lot better off as a Church, and as individuals. I will certainly not argue against any of those points!

This is how our church used the book. It's how My pastors presented it. The sermons they taught during the study were based out of the book of Romans. When they went over the being formed for God's family they backed it up with Romans 12:1-16

I wish I wasn't so "polemical" and had such a critical spirit. I would LOVE to get on board with what all my friends are doing around this book. Something in my spirit is just "checking" me when I really start to consider its teachings.... It might be the fact that the book is wonderful at producing "good people", but does so in a way that results in more "works stemming from self-improvement" than it does "works stemming from a love of Christ." I think this book really pushes people's "hot buttons" because most Americans are so disillusioned and "empty" and really feel like they're "missing their purpose in life." I think this is a natural feeling and the book is catering to that need (I wonder if the marketing company had anything to do with that....)

I don't see it as more to-do for one person, but a call to everyone in the congregation to do at least ONE thing within the Church Body that God has called them to do. If everyone in your congregation volunteered in the area they are each gifted it wouldn't cause burn-out for anyone, because everyone would be doing their part and carrying their own cross within the congregation, and not just a few people doing everything like is seen in most churches, which actually does cause burn-out for many.

In our church, even before we did this study, we had a great many volunteers, but since the study even MORE people have begun volunteering.

So, I don't see it as "do better, do better", but more, It's Not how much you do, but that you do at least ONE thing God has called you to do within your church body so that that body of believers functions more effectively. I can't speak for how other churches are presenting the message of this book, I can only speak for how my Pastors presented it. Which was as a Christian your responsible to your church body to serve God in at least one ministry.

[Edited on 11-22-2005 by BJClark]

[Edited on 11-22-2005 by BJClark]
 

alwaysreforming

Puritan Board Sophomore
Regardless of any info on Rick Warren, I found the information he provided about how to determine the correct meaning of a text very helpful. I did not know the right meaning of Proverbs 29:18; I'm glad to learn it. I'm tempted to cut and paste it here but I feel it might be too long. Ok, I decided to at least put this part in:


"If a translation introduces something in a new and fresh way it will necessarily introduce new nuances and shades of meaning. The way to remove nuances and shades of meaning is to use as literal a translation as possible so that the words are God's alone and are not interpreted by the translator. The author can then exposit the text, clarifying what might require clarification. This is nothing more than the traditional means of teaching what the Bible says. This is similar to the form Jesus used where He said, "You have heard it said...but I say." He took what was unclear and made it clear.


....consistently chooses translations that say what he feels needs to be said, regardless of the real meaning of a verse. A clear example of this is seen in his use of Proverbs 29:18 which, in one of his Ministry Toolbox updates, he provides in the King James translation: "without vision the people perish." He uses this verse in an attempt to prove his statement that "To accomplish anything you must first have a mission, a goal, a hope, a vision." Every other translation of Scripture provides a more clear translation such as "Where there is no prophetic vision the people cast off restraint" (ESV). Warren sought out the one verse that says what he wanted to say even while every other translation rendered the verse more clearly. In doing so he has certainly not clarified any nuance or shade of meaning. Rather, he has introduced one."



I hope I've added light and not heat. :candle:
 

Jie-Huli

Puritan Board Freshman
This is not a reply to anyone in particular. I do not have the time at present to write any detailed critique of "The Purpose Driven Life", and at any rate there are others who have already done it better than I could. The link Fred posted is a good and succinct discussion of some of the problems with this book.

I just want to state for the record that I am sure there are many isolated quotations that could be given from "The Purpose Driven Life" which are right and true. But that could be said of many books which have strayed from the purity of the gospel. There are also many wrong or at least misleading statements in "The Purpose Driven Life" which could be quoted. But my point about it giving a false presentation of the gospel is primarily due to what the book leaves out, not what is in it.

I am aware that the word sin does appear in "The Purpose Driven Life". But nowhere is the concept of our depravity and the curse of sin really explained. And in particular, I would point out that almost all of the citations of the mention of "sin" in PDL which Tom gave occur in later chapters . . . after the early chapter in which readers were invited to pray to receive Christ and be forgiven of their sins. At the point of the book where Mr. Warren leads readers to pray the "sinner's prayer", there has been no explanation of sinfulness at all. That is why I believe it to be a false presentation of the gospel . . . because true conviction of sin and repentance is effectually cut out of the "gospel presentation", and people are invited to "receive Christ" without it. I believe conviction of sin and repentance is absolutely essential to conversion, and no one can truly trust in Christ without it. I believe this is a cardinal Biblical truth essential to true Christianity, and if it is true that only reformed churches teach it this way, then only reformed churches are true Christian churches.

Again, if Mr. Warren did not claim to be presenting the gospel, it would be another matter entirely. But to claim to show unbelievers the way to peace with God, while effectively omitting what the Bible says is essential to it, must be soundly condemned.

Blessings,

Jie-Huli

[Edited on 11-23-2005 by Jie-Huli]
 

Robin

Puritan Board Junior
Originally posted by biblelighthouse
Originally posted by Robin
Go to the SB webiste: are their "worship venues" OK? (charging worshippers $20 admission) Maybe you think that's a small thing?

I looked on the SB website at the "venues": http://www.saddleback.com/flash/venues.html

But I don't see anything about $20 admission being charged. Where did you get that info? If that is true, then I certainly agree that it is terrible.

Joe,

I have a copy (I can try to e mail it.) They yanked it awhile ago, after receiving complaints. SB charges Bible studies and most "worship" venues....however, they now present requests "at the door".

Meanwhile, see an update and summary of the problems from Tim Challies here:

http://www.challies.com/archives/001468.php

R.
 

Robin

Puritan Board Junior
Originally posted by BJClark
Robin,

The only thing I have found to have cost are some of the classes they offer, many churches charge a fee to cover the cost of materials they use for such classes.

Does your church offer the Crown Financial Class? Ours does, and the Church funds part of the materials but people who take the class also pay a portion to help off set the over all cost of materials. Which they get to keep when the course is over.

Just as if they use other Bible study books, there is a fee to help cover the cost of the materials used, again that you get to keep and write in, not all churches can afford to pay out the total cost of the material

Our church did a class on Boundaries, those who took the class purchased the book, they could buy it a local book store and pay full price or they could purchase it from the church at cost, the church wasn't making any money on the book, they charged what it cost them.

So no, I don't see anything wrong with that.

[Edited on 11-22-2005 by BJClark]

Yes, B, a "workman IS worth his wages..." Obviously, we're OK with that. However....sum it all up, and it's clear RW is profiting from subscription revenues galore. He owns Pastors.com, btw, and has an AGENT.

Tell me where in the Bible, a pastor is to have an agent to manage business practices for him as it relates to his ministry?

:um:

r.
 

Robin

Puritan Board Junior
Originally posted by Mudandstars
"Btw, Tom....the Christian is to not depend on feelings. Search the Scriptures tirelessly; be a Berean; test every thing. Scripture commands this, instead. (You do know Scripture teaches this, right?)"

I wish there were little comic book character icons, like maybe Captain Obvious and his loyal sidekick, Unnecessary Boy.

:ditto: Josh! That'd be fun....are you up for it?

;)

r.
 

BJClark

Puritan Board Doctor
Robin,

What of the "Tentmakers" who supported their own ministries financially to help take the burden off of their churches?


And what of providing financially for his childrens children? Do you believe his income as a Pastor will provide in that manner? Why shouldn't he make a profit from his works outside of his pastorate?

Don't many preachers, even reformed preachers have books they have written and agents who help promote and sell their books and don't they make a profit from those as well?

I don't see a subscription fee for his Pastors.com website, what I see is charging for the tapes and CD's of his sermons for about $5.00 each, which is about the same thing MOST churches charge for sermons on tape and/or CD to help cover the cost of buying the cds and tapes.

So I guess I'm confused about what the problem is, that he's selling his cd's and tapes.

When I listen to the radio I hear many pastors who charge a fee for a cd or tape of their broadcast, and I don't see where he is doing anything different than that.

Tell me where in the bible it says it's wrong for him to use agents. I don't believe it mentions it being wrong in either direction.












Yes, B, a "workman IS worth his wages..." Obviously, we're OK with that. However....sum it all up, and it's clear RW is profiting from subscription revenues galore. He owns Pastors.com, btw, and has an AGENT.

Tell me where in the Bible, a pastor is to have an agent to manage business practices for him as it relates to his ministry?



[Edited on 11-24-2005 by BJClark]
 

gwine

Puritan Board Sophomore
Originally posted by BJClark
Robin,

What of the "Tentmakers" who supported their own ministries financially to help take the burden off of their churches?


And what of providing financially for his childrens children? Do you believe his income as a Pastor will provide in that manner? Why shouldn't he make a profit from his works outside of his pastorate?

Don't many preachers, even reformed preachers have books they have written and agents who help promote and sell their books and don't they make a profit from those as well?



[Edited on 11-24-2005 by BJClark] [/quote]

There is nothing wrong with a pastor working another job to take care of his family. Where I would draw the line is when he uses the Gospel to make that money. Paul worked as a tentmaker and I don't see that as a conflict of interest. The Gospel and all that goes with it should not be used for gain. Selling tapes and books at cost (meaning enough to pay for the material and workers and equipment) is fine. But I still don't think that he should benefit from it.

Rom 6:23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

1Co 9:18 What then is my reward? That in my preaching I may present the gospel free of charge, so as not to make full use of my right in the gospel.

2Co 11:7 Or did I commit a sin in humbling myself so that you might be exalted, because I preached God's gospel to you free of charge?
 

orlandogal

Inactive User
Help.....

My church just came out with a flyer with the following on it and it really concerns me. I really don't want to inflict "Warren Bashing" but I have prayed about this and Biblically, it just seems "off".

It says that the main principle for the PDL is
1) Declare your need and dependence upon God.

I think to myself, "most religious will not deny the existence or dependence on God......the Mormons believe in God at that level. It's really Jesus, so why isn't Jesus mentioned, you know? "God" is so politically correct, "are we afraid of offending with saying we need to be dependent on Christ?"

The other main principle is your prayer life. There is absolutely no mention of Bible/scripture reading. This brochure is a long brochure and it is all about God, prayer, fasting and praying. One reference to Jesus is in the whole flyer, and it is only in a scripture reference to the reason why we should fast.

Then, it seems like so many people at church are saying, "if you are against this, you are being divisive". Well, I am a solid christian, who constantly is growing in the Word and the people saying this are not ones who I would say are growing christians. I feel, like the end times are happening in my own church where I am feeling like I am a divisive person. I feel like this movement should have just stayed a book and it would have helped people more.
 

calgal

Puritan Board Graduate
:worms: I had a non Christian friend who was reading the PDL. His take on the book: it is a nice self help guide..As long as one accepts the idea of a higher power. :banghead: It is too much like Schuller's positivity nonsense for my liking. I read the book, saw the impact of the PDL and was unimpressed. :2cents:
 

Robin

Puritan Board Junior
Originally posted by orlandogal
My church just came out with a flyer with the following on it and it really concerns me. I really don't want to inflict "Warren Bashing" but I have prayed about this and Biblically, it just seems "off".

It says that the main principle for the PDL is
1) Declare your need and dependence upon God.

I think to myself, "most religious will not deny the existence or dependence on God......the Mormons believe in God at that level. It's really Jesus, so why isn't Jesus mentioned, you know? "God" is so politically correct, "are we afraid of offending with saying we need to be dependent on Christ?"

The other main principle is your prayer life. There is absolutely no mention of Bible/scripture reading. This brochure is a long brochure and it is all about God, prayer, fasting and praying. One reference to Jesus is in the whole flyer, and it is only in a scripture reference to the reason why we should fast.

Then, it seems like so many people at church are saying, "if you are against this, you are being divisive". Well, I am a solid christian, who constantly is growing in the Word and the people saying this are not ones who I would say are growing christians. I feel, like the end times are happening in my own church where I am feeling like I am a divisive person. I feel like this movement should have just stayed a book and it would have helped people more.

Leigh,

You're not alone. Many are and have been where you are. PD calls you a "dessenter" -- they even have classes to deal with folk like you.

http://www.challies.com/archives/001002.php

The link may help bring understanding to your concerns. ?? PD is designed to commandier/hi-jack the local church (in the name of "godly" methods.)

Here is an excerpt/quote from Ron Sylvia: PD pastor and leader of PD church plants. Read his whole teaching on the PD idea if implementation.

http://www.purposedriven.com/en-US/WorshipCommunity/ChurchPlanting/planting_oct.htm

Ron Sylvia:

"It was at a leadership team meeting in the first six months when a team member challenged our strategy for having seeker-sensitive worship services. He believed the church was a place for believers and the worship service should be fully oriented around them. He believed evangelism was for outside the church, not inside. This man had faithfully loved me and prayed for me. He had encouraged me in the lonely and challenging beginning days of the church. His vision, however, did not line up with what God had called The Springs to be. Soon after that meeting, he left the church. Love everyone, but move with the movers"

Btw, "movers" translates to those who agree with the subjective/self-promoting ideas of PD.

Robin

[Edited on 1-13-2006 by Robin]
 

Bladestunner316

Puritan Board Doctor
Who needs a Confession when you have this:

What We Believe

God is bigger and better and closer than we can imagine.
The Bible is God´s perfect guidebook for living.
Jesus is God showing himself to us.
Through His Holy Spirit, God lives in and through us now.
Nothing in creation "œjust happened." God made it all.
Grace is the only way to have a relationship with God.
Faith is the only way to grow in our relationship with God.
God has allowed evil to provide us with a choice, God can bring good even out of evil events and God promises victory over evil to those who choose him.
Heaven and hell are real places. Death is a beginning, not the end.
The church is to serve people like Jesus served people.
Jesus is coming again.
 
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