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Thread: The Emerging Willow Creek Church

  1. #1
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    Default The Emerging Willow Creek Church

    The Emerging Willow Creek
    Aug 04 2008

    Let Us Reason Ministries has posted an article about Willow Creek Community Church’s promotion of and affiliation with emerging church leaders. Their staging this spring of Brian McLaren, someone who denies cardinal Christian doctrine, was evidence enough of that. Bill Hybels helped created the doctrinal vacuum into which the emerging leaders have stepped. Now Hybels is a cheerleader for the very thing he helped create.


    http://www.sliceoflaodicea.com/?p=1386


    http://www.letusreason.org/Emerge5.htm
    For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also (Matthew 6:21)

  2. #2
    His Bride Guest

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    Wasn't it earlier this year when he admitted that his leading the seeker sensitive movement was a mistake? He admitted that they increased numbers but not disciples. Hmmm. I wondered just how sincere he was. Now we see that the leopard hasn't changed his spots. Not at all.

  3. #3
    His Bride Guest

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    Quote Originally Posted by Seventyx7 View Post
    I am NOT convinced that he isn't just trying to be wise as a serpent and harmless as a dove in reaching across boundaries...just because you affiliate w/ people who don't share sound doctrine..doesn't mean you are compromising your convicitons. Jesus was blasted all the time by the pharisees for who he "affiliated" with. I have watched alot and read alot about Rick Warren and he produces alot of fruit
    I guess many of us here would disagree with your assessment. Be ready for an onslaught!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Seventyx7 View Post
    I am NOT convinced that he isn't just trying to be wise as a serpent and harmless as a dove in reaching across boundaries...just because you affiliate w/ people who don't share sound doctrine..doesn't mean you are compromising your convicitons. Jesus was blasted all the time by the pharisees for who he "affiliated" with. I have watched alot and read alot about Rick Warren and he produces alot of fruit
    But what KIND of fruit is Rick Warren bearing? He is part of a very dangerous and deceiving movement that is infiltrating mainstream Christianity. It's called apostasy. Jesus was blasted by the pharisees because He spoke the truth to them and they didn't want to hear it. People today don't want to hear the truth ~ that their sins condemn them and it's only through accepting the gift of salvation through the shedding of Jesus' blood that they can be saved. What Warren and others like him are giving to the lost is a watered-down gospel ~ minus the repentence/salvation message because the world doesn't want to hear that part of it. It might offend them.

    I had to repent recently of being involved in the lifestyle evangelism gospel. Once I realized what it REALLY was about, I was horrified that I could be involved in something like that. The only way to eternal life is through repentence of our sins and accepting what Jesus did on the Cross for us ~ there is no other way and this lost and dying world needs to hear this ~ not some feel-good, give-them-what-they-want-to-hear gospel. To preach anything other than the true Gospel negates what Jesus did for us.

    Okay ~ I'm off my soapbox now .

  5. #5
    FrankBeMe Guest

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    The local Christian radio station here is running commercials for the Willow Creek leadership summit this Thursday and Friday. It's on their website also.

    I looked at the website for Willow Creek and saw who all is involved and looked at the church list that very much resembled the list of Warrenized churches. I was going to check it out, but now, nope.

  6. #6
    Berean Girl Guest

    Default Im am so tired

    Of going around and around in this apostasy thread with those who think that "another gospel" is something we should fight over, hogwash.

    Rick and his cronies teach "another gospel" dressed up in christianese, but lacks the power.

    It is a false gospel of works and feelings, ecumenism and apostasy.

    People had better wake up!!!!!!!!!!

  7. #7
    His Bride Guest

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    You see, Seventyx7, we have gone this way with others many times. This forum is all about warning others about apostate ministries, people, or movements. Many of us are very concerned about what is to be found among so-called "Christians." We do not read the hearts of those whom we question but we look at their theology, their methodology, their appetites of the flesh, and their outright abuse of scripture. The Bible is very clear that in the last days the world and the church will be so caught up in antiscriptural teachings that we are warned about it and told to be looking out for the wolves in sheeps clothing. You won't be getting anything but opposition to Rick Warren on this thread. Sorry.

  8. #8
    Mopsie Guest

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    Quote Originally Posted by Seventyx7 View Post
    I just wish that the body of Christ would unite
    That my friend, will happen very soon. It all comes down to the rapture. Hang in there. It's not easy to have to see that some are walking away from sound doctrine.

    The problem I have seen with Hybels, Warren, McLaren and the rest is that they so want to fill the churches that they are willing to do so by compromising the gospel. Leaving parts out, particularly those that are difficult (the fact that some are going to reject the gospel and yes, go to hell because there is no other way to the Father except through Jesus Christ - this is what they are denying) out. You just can't do that and expect people to know the grace of God through the working of the Holy Spirit. It just doesn't work that way.

    I know Willow Creek pretty well. My husband and I went to a conference there when we were first married (October 2001) through the church we were members of and we were very impressed. It seemed so cool that they were reaching out to anyone and everyone. Their campus was incredible. We were "stary-eyed" I guess you could say.

    But what I look at now, is the unfortunate truth that even though they have reached out to so many (and as it has already been mentioned) they have failed to finish what they started, so to speak. The Church as a whole doesn't need any more empty suits or pew dwellers. Bringing them in is not enough. You can't leave em' on baby formula forever. You have to give them meat to chew on and that is where they fail.

    One thing our family has longed for is unity within the Church (the body of Christ). We've been a part of Reformed churches, Christian Reformed churches, Baptist churches, a United Methodist Church, a Southern Baptist Church, a Wesleyan church, "Full Gospel" churches and in high school I visited with my youth group to a Catholic church, a charismatic church (also went with a co-worker in my twenties as just an attendee), another Baptist church, a Greek Orthodox church and also a Spanish speaking congregation at a local seminary. There is SO much division in the church, contentions, dissension...it was so painful to be a part of that.

    But so soon, Jesus IS going to come and all of that will go away. Find peace and hope in the promise of eternity that we have and that the season we are in now is going to bring forth the promise of our Savior's return. God is faithful!


  9. #9
    Mopsie Guest

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    Dude, what the heck? If you are that angry, take some time away from this forum, pull your Bible off your shelf and spend some time in prayer.

    Does it even matter to you, the replies that have courteously addressed you and yet you come back here in a rage?

    As a Christian: find hope and peace in the fact that Jesus will wipe all of this away. There will be unity, but in His timing and in His way.

    May God bless you...


  10. #10
    Mopsie Guest

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    Have you?

  11. #11
    Mopsie Guest

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    God bless you!

    I was a part of an outreach group through the same church that we went to the Willow Creek conference with. We went through the apartment buildings by our church and knocked on doors asking if we could share about our faith and give them flyers about things going on at our church. The experience changed my life.

    Most recently I was given the opportunity to serve as a chaplain through auto racing ministry (at the local level). It was something...

    What I have noticed though...through all these years - people want watered down Christianity. They don't want to hear about Hell. They don't want to hear that the only way to salvation is through Jesus Christ alone. And the unfortunate truth (if you take the time to read the articles here on RR) is that Rick Warren, Bill Hybels, Brian McLaren, Rob Bell and others like them have gone off the "straight and narrow" in the hopes that somehow, someway people will receive salvation in some other way (also make sure you do your homework on Joel Osteen) and by not telling them about Hell, they are being less offensive.

    I will be open with you and say that most people don't like me because I tell them how it is and that is fine. I just happen to be the type of person that likes to deal with absolutes and that is what I like about being a Christian. I know that God is going to be faithful and that when he makes a promise, he's going to keep it. I like knowing my options up front, I can either disbelieve (thank the Lord I don't) and go to hell, or I can accept faith in Jesus Christ, be reconciled to God, receive the Holy Spirit and be comforted through the gift of eternal life.

    I guess I wonder, how many people like surprises? I don't (maybe that's just me). How many people like being lied to or only given half truths? I imagine most people don't. The problem with emergent theology is that it only presents half of the story.

    There does tend to be two ways of doing church these days with not much in the middle. You can be ultra-conservative (always preaching hell and throwing the Bible at people with the slightest notion they aren't perfect) or contemporary (emergent) (never preaching hell and poo-pooing sin, "Eh, you're not that bad, God didn't really mean you have to confess sin). Neither way is right. Both sides need to be exposed.

    But what I would ask you to remember, is that this is a pre-trib forum.

    Personally, I don't know what I would do without the hope of the rapture. It will mean unity restored to the body of Christ. The Church will no longer be divided. How much better could it get?


  12. #12
    jubilationtcornpone Guest

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    Quote Originally Posted by Seventyx7 View Post
    I am NOT convinced that he isn't just trying to be wise as a serpent and harmless as a dove in reaching across boundaries...just because you affiliate w/ people who don't share sound doctrine..doesn't mean you are compromising your convicitons. Jesus was blasted all the time by the pharisees for who he "affiliated" with.
    The Pharisees lambasted Jesus for associating with sinners. They did not accuse him of partnering with false teachers. Nor could they, because he did no such thing.

  13. #13
    His Bride Guest

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    Seventyx7, I think that you are not looking at the whole counsel of scripture that pertains to brothers in Christ. You seem to avoid the issues of truth, accountability and doctrine. Men like Hybles and Warren only present half of the gospel. They seem to intentionally leave out the baseline issues of sin and repentance. You can spend all day trying to list their merits on this forum but it won't get you very far. We have heard it all. It isn't about taking sides. It is about the truth of the Word of God. I'm afraid we don't trust the "truth" of the Purpose Driven Life or Warren, Hybels, and others of that philosophy.

  14. #14
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    I really need some help here -- I feel like my head will explode by trying to understand this whole topic . . .

    My basic question is this: How can you tell if your church is moving toward the emergent movement?

    My folks and many friends attend churches on the Willow Creek association list. When I alert them, they say the sermons sound doctrinally correct, like they have for the last 20 years. They are being fed there and are impressed by all of the outreach programs. In other words, they don't see anything wrong in these churches, and are very happy there. I don't understand this whole subject well enough to know what to tell them -- in EASY terms.

    How can TRUE believers who want to steer clear of apostate churches detect the SUBTLE teachings of the emergent movement?

    I am currently listening to the last two links but I'm still not getting it. Jello for brains, I know . . . Thanks for any help you can provide.

  15. #15
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    Sing4Him,

    Thanks for the suggestions. I will look into those. Another question on a more fundamental level . . .

    A criticism of the emergent churches is that the sermons are social in nature (rather than theological). I'm at the end of the first of those two cicministry links and they're saying that a church should just preach the gospel every single Sunday. But what about people who are saved and know the gospel quite well but need teaching on the problems we all struggle with? Is it wrong to preach sermons about the very real struggles in today's culture? Unless I misunderstood . . .

  16. #16
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    Sing4Him,
    I think typically (I won't say always anymore), if you attend churches that preach expository (systematic exposition) you will get a verse by verse type of preaching, rather than topical preaching. The advantage to this, is that the whole council of God will eventually be preached. If you have a pastor that preaches topically, at least in churches of today, you will most probably be receiving a social gospel. They pick and choose whatever social issue needs to be addressed for that week. As far as preaching the gospel, there have been many wonderful expository pastors that have preached in this way, and still preached the gospel every Sunday. They managed to weave it into their messages, and people were given ample time during the service to make a decision for Christ. An example of this would be Spurgeon and John MacArthur falls into this category.
    btw, there aren't very many sermons that are preached in this way that don't touch on the daily struggles of life. These pastors are difficult to find, but once you find them, boy you want to hang on to them, and pray for them daily. They are truly annointed and are a dying group of men.
    Hope this helps.

  17. #17
    FrankBeMe Guest

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    I got a book catalog for pastors yesterday in the mail. It has two pages strictly for books by Warren and his followers and Willow Creek instructional material. Most of the rest of the books in the catalog I'm pretty comfortable with...but having Warren and Hybels and Bell and McLaren books and materials for sale is not a good thing.

  18. #18
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    You know the lack of awareness around the risks of Contemplative Spirituality are staggering.

    I just spoke to a friend at church on Sunday who is going to a Jesuit Retreat House for 4 days to go through the spiritual exercise of St. Ignatius Loyola. He said he has been doing it for about 10 years. A Catholic friend got him started. I read through a summary of what they do, and its frightening how unbibilical it is and how dangerous in terms of spiritual contact it is. And he has no concerns.

    He asked us to pray for him to have his spiritual protection zones up while he's there....but I am thinking its just dumb to participate in something like that voluntarily and then ask for spiritual protection.

    He will have a spiritual guide or director to check on him through the process and ensure he's doing alright and interpreting his encounters appropriately.

    Wierd Stuff.

    But truly, why would a Christian put themselves in this situation??

    (Didn't mean to get this thread off track. I was doing a search of St. Igatius Loyola to see what we had on these spiritual exercises and this thread popped up. It appears these exercises are some of those that Sing listed as problematic. I can see why).

  19. #19
    Berean Girl Guest

    Default Again I ask

    Pegmo, why are you even giving him the benefit of the doubt that he is christian????

    sounds like a rebel to me....

    sorry, i am so tired of everyone always calling people christians who by their fruit most certainly appear not to be, at least not born-again of the Holy Spirit Biblical Christians..........


    i hate what is happening and that so many are willing to turn a blind eye and persist in their own folly

    then again Jesus did say MANY on that day will say Lord Lord..............

  20. #20
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    Pegmo, why are you even giving him the benefit of the doubt that he is christian????
    A valid question. I am going by everything else he professes and how he witnesses. He is married to a Catholic woman. And I think he got started on these things when he got married. So he has one foot in each camp. I realize he is compromising and it affects his discernment, so he's kind of an interesting case. He witnesses strongly, but when it comes to Catholicism, he knows its wrong from a gospel persective. He had agreed to convert to Catholicism when he got married, not realizing what it was, but when he got into it, he couldn't do it, and its a point of contention in his marriage.

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