I resisted reading The Purpose Driven Life just because it was so mind-blowingly popular. Everyone and their dog was reading it. OK, I don’t know any dogs that read it but I think that is just because it didn’t have any pictures. I finally only broke down and read it when someone in my congregation warned me about all the New Age teaching in it. I felt I needed to be aware of it if it posed a danger to the flock so I made an $8 investment in a copy. (By then, there were zillions of copies in the Half price book store. Glad I waited.)
I was astounded at what I found and then even more puzzled as to why it was such a huge seller. It was basically a compilation of every sermon I heard growing up as a new believer. Unbelievers were buying this and eating it up? Go figure. I couldn’t find any new age, any compromise of the gospel or any wickedly bad doctrine – just lots of cool Christian sayings, lots of alliteration (which means it has to be from God) and witty plays on words to communicate what was a sound message of salvation. Why all the criticism?
I watched Rick Warren on Larry King where he unashamedly proclaimed the gospel with clarity and power. I even began to follow him on Twitter and he has an amazing ability to pack an entire sermon – minus altar call – into 160 characters. I gotta admit I became a fan of the guy. But was I missing something?
Enter the heavy weights. John Piper is a theologian (of the Tulip Calvinist flavor), pastor and respected teacher. If Rick Warren is some new age guru who slipped sloppy theology into his book just to sell a trillion copies, John will flush him out and expose his evilness. The interview is great. I suggest you set some time aside to watch it and then decide for yourself.