Thursday, April 22, 2010

Piper: Promoting "Evangelical" Fads

"I do think he’s deeply theological. He’s a brilliant man. He wouldn’t have the church he does or the Peace Plan, or all the influence he does and of course the greatest sentence in the Purpose Driven Life is the first one isn’t it? It’s not about you, it’s about God. The Glory of God. So I don’t think he’s emergent. At root I think he is theological and doctrinal and sound.” ~Piper from the audio

It seems inconsistant with what Johnson himself said a few years ago about Rick Warren:


But let’s set the critiques aside for a moment. Even if we had no bone to pick with the content or the underlying philosophy of The Purpose Driven Life—is this a really the kind of book that deserves to be the best-selling evangelical work of all time? Is there anything profound or original or exceptionally brilliant about the content of this book? Is it great literature, or especially superb Bible teaching, or excellent theology made understandable in simple terms? It’s none of those things. The extraordinary success of this book stems from a very clever marketing scheme that targeted a specific market at the most opportune time. It hit the shelves at a moment when the evangelical culture was ripe for fads and stampedes.

In The Purpose Driven Church, he says this:
At Saddleback Church we’ve . . . tried to recognize the waves God was sending our way, and we’ve learned to catch them. We’ve learned to use the right equipment to ride those waves, and we’ve learned the importance of balance. We’ve also learned to get off dying waves whenever we sensed God wanted to do something new. The amazing thing is this: The more skilled we become in riding waves of growth, the more God sends!

Ah! so that’s why we have this proliferation of fads. Evangelicals have gotten so skilled at surfing the latest fashions that God just sends more and more of them. And they get bigger every time.
Today’s fad may seem benign enough if you don’t care much about biblical discernment. Rick Warren says he just wants to meet people’s “felt needs” and insists he wants to remain biblical at the same time. Where’s the harm in that? But that philosophy is wrong and unbiblical, because it’s contrary to Paul’s clear command in 2 Timothy 4, to preach the word and refuse to cater to the itch of people’s “felt needs.” Meanwhile, all these fads are moving us further from our evangelical commitment to the principles of sola fide and sola Scriptura.

End quote.

Its ok that Piper promotes the very fad and anti-biblical philosophy he just repudiated some years back? Is it right to defend a man behind a pulpit who consistantly, repeatedly, and defiantly offers false teachers? Does this not show a lack of biblical doctrine and practice, wisdom and discernment?

Perhaps its all mere opinion, including unfaithfully preaching the word and parading around a false teacher. So its not so much unbiblical or wrong, but just different?

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