In a Christianity Today interview with popular evangelical teacher John Piper, Piper is questioned for his recent invitation of Rick Warren to his Desiring God conference, which brought criticism to Piper. In the interview, Piper states the following:
CT: You invited Rick Warren; would you say he exemplifies [your] “thinking”?
Piper: No, I don’t think he exactly exemplifies what I’m after. But he is biblical. He quoted 50 Scriptures from memory. Unbelievable, his mind is Vesuvius. So I asked him what impact reading Jonathan Edwards had on him. What these authors like Karl Barth and Edwards do for him is give him a surge of theological energy that then comes through his wiring. What I wanted to do with Rick is force him to talk about thinking so pragmatists out there can say, “A lot of thinking goes into what he does.” (emphasis added)
CT: You received some negative feedback for inviting him.
Piper: It was real risky. I don’t even know if I did the right thing. If somebody said, “Are you sure you should have invited him?” “No.” I think the first thing I’d say—maybe the only thing—is I think he’s been slandered. I think we probably need to work harder at getting him right. (emphasis added)
Lighthouse Trails authors and editors have written extensively on the teachings and promotions of Rick Warren. Our question, after reading this interview is, in what way have we slandered Rick Warren? What has been said from this ministry that is not true about Rick Warren? Has Rick Warren really been slandered, or is John Piper just another evangelical leader who gives credibility to another leader who is leading millions toward a mystical/emerging/ecumenical spirituality?
If you have read something on this website or in one of our books that is not true about Rick Warren, please bring this to our attention. In 2002, when we first began this ministry and publishing company, we sent a copy of our first book, A Time of Departing (1st Edition) to Rick Warren. He wrote back and thanked us for the book, saying, “That’s a hot topic! [contemplative]” At the time, we did not know that Warren himself was promoting this very thing and had been for a long time.1 By the time the second edition of A Time of Departing was released a few years later, it included an entire chapter on Rick Warren’s contemplative/emerging propensities. Since then, we released Faith Undone and A “Wonderful” Deception, both which document Warren’s contemplative/emerging/New Spirituality promotions. So we ask the question, how have we slandered Rick Warren?
We want to clarify something – Lighthouse Trails has never attacked Rick Warren on a personal level, nor do we wish him any personal harm or ill; we are challenging the teachings and promotions of the man who is often considered and called the most influential evangelical in America (and perhaps in the world).
1. see The Purpose Driven Church by Rick Warren, pp. 126-127