Pastor Rick Warren's False Gospel

by David J. Stewart | July 2016

Acts 15:1, “And certain men which came down from Judaea taught the brethren,
and said, Except ye be circumcised after the manner of Moses, ye cannot be saved.”

       Kindly, Pastor Rick Warren of the Saddleback Creek Church is a conman (aka,“ confidence man”)! Mr. Warren is the most dangerous kind of false prophet, because he starts with the truth and mixes his lies amongst truth, making the lies almost impossible to expose. Warren is a suave speaker, but he speaks lies of the Devil. At first, his plan of salvation sounds really good. He is a gifted speaker, likable, and an ear-tickler! But as he progresses into his false doctrine, he goes horribly astray, adding unbiblical requirements to the Gospel, as I'll show you.

Legendary Masonic author Manly P. Hall said, “The most effective deception is the HALF-TRUTH, because in part it can be contested with incontestable logic!” Satan's most effective deceptions are those wrapped in a superficial shell of truth. Warren takes the basic elements of the Gospel, then adds unbiblical requirements to them (as we see in our text passage from Acts 15:1). Certain men, false prophets, came to town teaching that a person could not be saved without being physically circumcised.

Of course, this is heresy, which the apostle Peter exposed in Acts 15:24, “Forasmuch as we have heard, that certain which went out from us have troubled you with words, subverting your souls, saying, Ye must be circumcised, and keep the law: to whom we gave no such commandment.” Rick Warren is subverting the souls of men with his false teachings. The Bible gives no such commandment as Warren teaches, to offer a prayer of commitment in addition to believing to be saved.

Here is Pastor Rick Warren's FALSE PLAN of salvation:

1. ADMIT - confess that you are a sinner to Christ. This is accurate.

2. BELIEVE - Believe that Jesus Christ died to pay for your sins on the cross. This is accurate.

Next is where Pastor Warren goes horrible awry in his doctrine...

3. RECEIVE - Receive God's free gift of salvation. John 1:12, “But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name.” Warren attempts to create two separate steps of believing and receiving. Of the hundreds of Scriptures in the New Testament teaching that we are saved simply by believing, it is wrong to take this particular passage out of context and base a new doctrine on this one verse. The person who receives Christ has believed! And besides, if you look closely at John 1:12, believing is mentioned before receiving. So why does Warren mention believing first? Biblically, there is no distinction between believing and receiving. We are born-again by believing on the name of Jesus, a supernatural miracle in response to our faith, born anew by the Holy Spirit of God.

John 1:13-14, “Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.” On the Day of Pentecost (“Pentecost” means fifty, that is, fifty days after Christ raised up from the dead), the apostle Peter preached the Gospel to several thousand people. Wonderfully, there were 3,000 people saved, who simply received (believed) the Gospel when they heard it. That's how easy it is to be saved. Acts 2:41, “Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls.” They weren't required to believe, and then receive. Rick Warren has created his own strange pet doctrine.

4. INVITING - Warren goes on to teach that we must invite Jesus Christ to be the “Lord” of our life. He says “Lord” means “boss, manager, director, the one in charge, under new management.” Warren goes further astray by saying that the way we receive Christ is by inviting Him into our life as our Lord (which he calls “BOSS,” i.e., Master). He says receiving Christ means that “I am no longer calling the shots in my own life.” He leads the viewer to “pray a prayer of commitment” to be saved. These extra requirements to be saved, which Rick Warren has sinfully added to the Gospel, are satanic to the core!!!

The apostle Peter rebuked as heresy the unbiblical requirement to be circumcised to be saved (Acts 15:1, 24). Acts 15:1, “And certain men which came down from Judaea taught the brethren, and said, Except ye be circumcised after the manner of Moses, ye cannot be saved.” Pastor Warren commits the same error of the wicked, teaching that except you make Christ Lord of your life ye cannot be saved. In sharp contrast, the Scriptures simply tell us to BELIEVE THE GOSPEL to be saved. Mark 1:15, “And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel.” A literal Greek interpretation would be: “Change your mind and believe that Christ died on the cross for your sins, was buried, and resurrected three days later.” Romans 1:16-17, “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.”

We find a wonderful Scripture in Galatians 3:2, “This only would I learn of you, Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?The apostle Paul writes to the church at Galatia and tells them, “I just want to know ONE THING... How did you become indwelt with the Holy Spirit? That is, how did you get saved? Did you get saved by the works of the law? Or did you simply put your faith in the Gospel when you heard it preached?” Amen! Here again we see how simple it is to be saved, by simply BELIEVING THE GOSPEL!!! God had to make getting saved very simple, otherwise stupid people couldn't do it, respectfully. God made salvation so simple that even a young child can easily be saved, just by gladly receiving the Gospel. When you hear and personally trust the Good News (admitting that you are a guilty sinner in God's eyes who deserves to burn in Hell forever), believing that Jesus died on the cross to pay for your sins, was buried, and raised up the third day, you are saved. It's that simple!!!

Warren says in essence that we must receive Jesus as our “Lord” meaning “boss, CEO, the chairman, the one in charge. I'm no longer calling the shots in my life. Jesus Christ is the manager of my life—He's the CEO. He's not just resident, He's the president!” This is all in ADDITION to believing the Gospel, to be saved. None of this is the Gospel. Just as the false prophets in Acts 15:1 who subverted the souls of their victims, so also is Rick Warren subverting the souls of men and women with his false plan of damnation!!!

Mr. Warren says in the video presentation, “And you can take these steps right now, by praying a simple prayer of commitment, here and now. And if you've never settled this issue, or if you feel you've always had doubts.”

Here is the prayer that Mr. Warren leads the viewer to repeat after him...

Lord, I want to believe, help me with my doubts. Dear Jesus, thank you for making me and for loving me (even when I ignored you and went my own way). I realize now that I need you in my life, and I'm sorry for my sins—the things that I've done that I know I did, and the things that I've did that I don't know I did—I ask you to forgive me, and cleanse my life. Thank you for dying on the cross for me. And please help me to understand it more. As much as I know how, I want to follow you from now on. Please come into my life, and make me a new person inside. I accept your gift of salvation, one that I'll never deserve. And I want to live for your purposes the rest of my life. Amen.

SOURCE: Experiencing Salvation In Jesus, by Pastor Rick Warren

I noticed that Rick Warren has a habit of leaving out Jesus' resurrection. As with other false prophets, Warren mixes the Gospel with a required commitment to live for Christ's purposes for the rest of your life, and to follow Christ from now on, and to invite Jesus into your life to make you a new person, et cetera. As a prerequisite to being saved, Warren and other false prophets require a commitment to reform. This is grace mixed with works. Any Gospel that adds discipleship to it is a false plan of salvation.

Rick Warren speaks of the gift of salvation in one sentence, and then speaks of having to commit one's life to follow Christ in the next. This is confusing! Do you know why he does this? The reason is so obvious to the learned born-again Christian. It is because all false religions are based upon WORKS. Roman Catholics require works in addition to faith to get to Heaven. They teach what is known as “sacramental salvation” (i.e., keeping sacraments to get to Heaven). Catholics require keeping Seven Sacraments to obtain salvation. Biblically, they are all going to Hell. Ephesians 2:8-9 teaches that we are saved by God's grace alone, not by works, lest any man boast of his own goodness. Mormons require good works to be saved, and so do Jehovah's Witnesses. Adam tried to merit redemption through his own works, with his fig-leaf religion. Cain tried to merit redemption through his own works, with his grain offerings. The false prophets in Acts 15:1 tried to merit redemption through their own works, by circumcision. Whether it be adding circumcision, or adding a life of commitment and following Christ in obedience, both are NOT THE GOSPEL!!!

Adding Works to the Gospel is a Road to Hell—a Road That Rick Warren is Traveling!

If you have any doubts as to what I am teaching you from the Bible, please consider Matthew 7:21-23 carefully. These religious people gave their lives to the name of Jesus. They boasted of their “many wonderful works.” They followed Jesus and served Him rigorously for a lifetime. And yet, now they are being sent to Hell forever! Whoa! Jesus said the horrifying words to them in Matthew 7:23, “I NEVER KNEW YOU: DEPART FROM ME, YE THAT WORK INIQUITY! The Lord tells them what they did wrong. Matthew 7:21, “Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.” These false prophets, like Rick Warren and the men in Acts 15:1, didn't do God's will. Instead, they ADDED works to the finished work of Christ. Whatever is required to pay our massive debt of sin was completely paid in full by the blood of Jesus. Salvation is not doing your best, it is having Christ's best put to your account through receiving Him by faith. God will not save anyone who is trying to be saved, He will only save those who are trusting to be saved.

False prophets always start out by calling eternal life a free gift; but then they add things to it, such as “inviting Christ into your life,” “asking Jesus into your heart,” offering “a prayer of commitment,” surrendering to Christ's will so that “I am no longer calling the shots in my life,” and so forth.

The Bible plainly teaches us in 1st Corinthians 15:1-4 what “the Gospel” (i.e., Good News) is:

1st Corinthians 15:1-4, “Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain. For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures.”

There it is—Christ DIED on the cross for our sins, He was BURIED, and He bodily RESURRECTED the third day for our justification. This is “the Gospel.” If you try to get into Heaven any other way besides believing the Gospel, you won't be allowed!!! Take your time and go through the information again. Pray and ask God to open your eyes to the truth of His Word. Study 1st Corinthians 15:1-4. Then study Rick Warren's teachings and compare. As you'll clearly see, Mr. Warren has added all sorts of works, discipleship, letting God call the shots instead of me, making a commitment to live an upright life, et cetera ... all to obtain salvation. What malarkey! This is all so far away from “the simplicity that is in Christ” (2nd Corinthians 11:3-4). Rick Warren's plan of salvation is a complicated nightmare. It's a bunch of malarkey I tell you!!!

People will always try to put you into bondage to get you to obey them instead of obeying the Lord Jesus Christ. That's what religion will do, you see! —Pastor Max D. Younce, a quote from the awesome sermon titled, INDEPENDENCE DAY—FREEDOM FROM BONDAGE—CIVIL OR RELIGIOUS?

Psalms 116:15, “Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his saints.”

Jesus Came to Save Sinners | You Need HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS!