Global Peace Plans Who Is Right Review Of Rick Warrens Global Peace Plan

Rick Warren, author of​ the best selling book ‘The Purpose Driven Life’ and leader of​ the Saddleback mega church in​ California has launched a​ global PEACE plan which aims to​ enlist ‘one billion foot soldiers for the Kingdom of​ God’. in​ a​ talk given to​ 30,000 people in​ Anaheim, USA he announced his plan which ‘will permanently change the face of​ international missions to​ take on these five ‘global giants’ for which the church can become the ultimate distribution and change agent to​ overcome Spiritual Emptiness, Self-serving Leadership, Poverty, Disease and ignorance (or illiteracy). This is​ the most important series of​ messages we’ve ever taught in​ 23 years here at​ Saddleback church. We believe it​ is​ part of​ the beginning of​ a​ Spiritual Awakening, a​ Global Movement, a​ New Reformation. The First Reformation returned us to​ the message of​ the original church. it​ was a​ reformation of​ doctrine - what the church BELIEVES. This Second Reformation will return us to​ the mission of​ the original church. it​ will be a​ reformation of​ purpose- what the church DOES in​ the world.’

All of​ this sounds very inspiring and is​ having a​ huge impact on evangelical Christians. However the idea that the church can change the leadership of​ the world system and eradicate poverty, disease and ignorance does not square up with the Word of​ God nor with the reality of​ what is​ happening in​ the world today. Jesus said there are going to​ be famines, earthquakes, pestilences and disasters hitting the earth with increasing frequency in​ the last days and widespread persecution of​ Christians, in​ fact the complete opposite of​ what Rick Warren is​ saying.

This is​ not to​ say that Christians should not be involved in​ giving relief to​ those in​ need in​ the world. But the idea that the church can be mobilised to​ bring a​ new leadership to​ the world which will eradicate poverty and social ills is​ another restatement of​ the dominion teaching which has blinded Christians to​ the truth of​ the prophetic word over the past thirty years and sent them down the path to​ disappointment. Dreams of​ transforming society and endless prophecies of​ imminent revival always turn to​ dust and ashes in​ the face of​ social reality. More and more people turn to​ yoga, Tai Chi and other alternative spiritualities based on Hinduism and eastern religions, Islam becomes more and more assertive, and apostate Church leaders continue to​ deny the fundamentals of​ the faith to​ the applause of​ the media which for the most part shows hatred and disdain for the Lord Jesus Christ. Meanwhile crime, violence, terrorism, breakdown of​ family life and sexual immorality continue to​ increase at​ alarming rates across the world, making life almost unbearable for millions.

There is​ not a​ shred of​ evidence either in​ the Bible or​ in​ world events around us that a​ billion man evangelical Christian army will lead the world out of​ darkness into the light of​ Rick Warren’s ‘New Reformation.’ For a​ start there are not a​ billion evangelical Christians on the earth anyway. The only way you can come up with this figure is​ if​ you include the Roman Catholics and other nominal Christians as​ part of​ the same church, which appears to​ be the way of​ modern evangelical Christianity anyway. Billy Graham said of​ the late Pope ‘He was one of​ those rare individuals whose legacy will endure long after he has gone. I will always remember his personal warmth to​ me and his deep interest in​ our ministry.’ Joel Edwards, Director of​ UK Evangelical Alliance, said, ‘John Paul II was one of​ the most remarkable Christian leaders of​ recent times, a​ Christian pastor with a​ commitment to​ evangelisation and the global church and to​ creedal Christianity.’ Brian Houston, founder of​ Hillsong Church in​ Australia said, ‘We pray that this papacy, like those before it​ is​ marked by a​ commitment to​ seeing the Christian message go forward and people changed by the power of​ the Gospel.’

How can Roman Catholicism and the late Pope who believed Mary to​ be a​ mediator between man and God and who was happy to​ say that Buddhists, Hindus, Muslims and animists were praying to​ the same God as​ Christians be commended in​ this way by evangelical Christians? How can people be changed by the power of​ the Gospel in​ a​ church which denies that power? if​ this is​ the majority view of​ evangelical Christians today we need to​ go back to​ the first Reformation and recognise the role of​ Roman Catholicism in​ persecuting Biblical Christianity and preventing the spread of​ the authentic Gospel and the Word of​ God.

In the real Reformation men like Jan Hus, Latimer, Ridley and Tyndale gave their lives being burnt at​ the stake in​ order to​ bring the glorious message of​ the Gospel to​ people blinded by popish superstition and error. in​ the mega churches of​ America which are promoting the New Reformation sponsored by Rick Warren we have dance floors, shopping malls and Christianity made pleasant and palatable to​ the people while for the most part the Word of​ God is​ left outside, especially when it​ comes to​ Bible prophecy.

In his book ‘Purpose Driven Life’ (page 285-6) Rick Warren implies that the study of​ prophecy is​ a​ distraction from sharing our faith. Commenting on Acts 1.6-8, he writes ‘When the disciples wanted to​ talk about prophecy, Jesus quickly switched the conversation to​ evangelism. He wanted them to​ concentrate on their mission to​ the world. He said in​ essence, ‘The details of​ my return are none of​ your business. What is​ your business is​ the mission I have given you. Focus on that!’ This actually misses the point of​ the discussion between Jesus and the disciples in​ Acts 1. Jesus was not saying the details of​ His return are none of​ our business, He was simply saying the events surrounding the restoration of​ the Kingdom to​ Israel were not going to​ happen there and then in​ the lifetime of​ the disciples, but that they had a​ job to​ do, which is​ to​ take the Gospel to​ the ends of​ the earth.

If the Lord considered the details of​ His return to​ be none of​ our business it​ is​ a​ bit odd that He should tell the disciples the signs of​ His second coming in​ the Olivet Discourse (Matthew 24, Mark 13, Luke 21) and that so much of​ the Old and New Testament should be taken up with prophecies about this event.
In fact the idea that there is​ a​ conflict between those who want to​ study prophecy and those who want to​ get on with the mission of​ Jesus is​ a​ red herring. if​ you understand prophecy you will realise the urgency of​ the message of​ the Gospel going out so that people can be saved from the judgement that is​ coming on the earth. it​ is​ the apostate church that wants to​ get the Christians away from looking at​ the prophecies of​ the Bible, because they tell us that in​ the last days there will be false Messiahs and false prophets leading many astray and a​ false Church allied to​ the political world system bringing persecution on the true Christians (Matthew 24.5, 23-26, 2 Thessalonians 2, 2 Timothy 3-4, 2 Peter 2, Jude, Revelation 17).

Interestingly the Roman Catholic Church in​ Britain has published a​ statement called ‘The Gift of​ Scripture’ which states that we cannot expect to​ find ‘total accuracy’ in​ the Bible. in​ particular it​ says that the first 11 chapters of​ Genesis and the Book of​ Revelation are not to​ be taken literally and that we cannot expect to​ find ‘details about the end of​ the world’ in​ Revelation. Yet the Lord Himself states that Revelation is​ about ‘the things which will take place after this’ (Rev 1.19) and it​ describes in​ detail the Great Tribulation period, the reign of​ the Beast (Antichrist), Armageddon and the Second Coming of​ Christ to​ the earth. Revelation 22.18-19 pronounces a​ curse on those who would add or​ take away ‘from the words of​ the book of​ this prophecy.’

Of course it​ is​ not only Roman Catholicism that is​ saying you cannot take Genesis and Revelation seriously. Many supposedly evangelical Bible colleges training people for ministry in​ churches in​ the UK also pour scorn on a​ literal interpretation of​ Genesis and Revelation. However if​ we cannot trust what God says about the beginning and the end, why should we trust what He says about what happens in​ between? in​ fact Creation science groups are producing excellent material showing that the Genesis account is​ the most plausible explanation of​ how we came to​ be here and our purpose in​ this magazine is​ to​ help Christians understand the significance of​ Bible prophecy and its relation to​ current events.

Anyone who has a​ sober and realistic evaluation of​ the current world situation must recognise that the world is​ heading for the Great Tribulation and the reign of​ the Antichrist. a​ world that indoctrinates its children with occultism, violence and sexual immorality is​ not going to​ turn en masse to​ Jesus the Messiah when the troubles hit the earth, but to​ the false Messiah or​ Antichrist (Revelation 13). Our world system today is​ a​ house on the sand which is​ heading for disaster and neither politicians, business leaders nor church leaders are able to​ stop the calamity that is​ coming. The only one who can sort out the mess which we have made of​ the earth is​ the Lord Jesus Himself and Bible prophecy makes it​ clear that He will do that when He returns in​ power and glory.

However if​ the church has been encouraged to​ reject the prophetic word and to​ cooperate with the world in​ trying to​ solve its problems by a​ global PEACE plan, it​ will end up compromising with the world system and the apostate church, described as​ ‘Mystery Babylon the Great, the Mother of​ Harlots and of​ the Abominations of​ the Earth’ in​ Revelation 17.5. as​ this organisation is​ going to​ persecute true Christians (‘I saw the woman, drunk with the blood of​ the saints and with the blood of​ the martyrs of​ Jesus’), the call of​ the Lord is​ to​ ‘Come out of​ Babylon’ not to​ cooperate with it!

God’s real peace plan has to​ do with Jesus the Messiah returning to​ the Mount of​ Olives at​ the time when global conflict brings the armies of​ the world to​ Jerusalem at​ the end of​ this age. in​ the meantime His call is​ for us to​ make peace with God by repentance and faith in​ the Lord Jesus Christ who shed His blood at​ the cross in​ order to​ redeem us. Sadly in​ the midst of​ all the clamour for a​ ‘New Reformation’ which Rick Warren is​ calling for, there is​ a​ growing neglect of​ the preaching of​ the Gospel and study of​ the Word of​ God in​ professing evangelical churches. as​ a​ result the ‘New Reformation’ is​ in​ fact looking like the Counter Reformation which sought to​ lead the church back to​ the dark ages of​ superstition and ignorance.

We do agree however that a​ global movement mobilising Christians is​ needed, but mobilising them to​ warn of​ the coming time of​ judgement and to​ point to​ the Lord Jesus who has come in​ fulfilment of​ prophecies of​ the Suffering Servant Messiah and who is​ coming again in​ fulfilment of​ the prophecies of​ the Reigning King Messiah. We need to​ pray that the Holy Spirit will raise up such a​ movement and publish the word of​ salvation to​ this last generation while time remains.

Sir Isaac Newton, the famous scientist who lived from 1643 – 1727, was a​ Bible believing Christian. He wrote ‘About the time of​ the end, a​ body of​ men will be raised up who will turn their attention to​ the Prophecies and insist upon their literal interpretation in​ the midst of​ much clamour and opposition’. as​ the world heads for disaster many people are going to​ be looking for an​ answer which makes sense. The idea that the Christians are about to​ take over the government and solve the problems of​ poverty and bring godly leadership to​ the world will look ridiculous in​ the conditions described by Jesus and the Apostles for the end of​ this age. The only message which will make sense is​ the call to​ ‘flee the wrath to​ come’ and to​ ‘repent and believe the Gospel for the Kingdom of​ God is​ at​ hand.’

While we do not have the kind of​ numbers Rick Warren can call on, we do have a​ growing network of​ people around the world who know that the end of​ this age is​ coming and want to​ make the message of​ salvation known. if​ you are on a​ sinking ship and the water is​ pouring in​ through a​ multitude of​ holes, there is​ not much point in​ directing your efforts to​ filling in​ the holes. You need to​ be getting people off the ship and onto the life boat.

By this I do not mean that Christians should not be engaged in​ helping those in​ need as​ a​ part of​ a​ concern for their eternal souls. I do mean that if​ Christians think they can save the world system by so doing they are going to​ be disappointed. This is​ because the ship the human race is​ travelling in​ today, the Cosmos world system, is​ holed in​ many places beneath the water line. it​ cannot be saved from destruction. But the people who are on it​ can be saved. There is​ only one lifeboat which can carry us to​ safety – repentance and faith in​ the Lord Jesus Christ.

If you are challenged to​ do something about this here are some suggestions.
1. Pray that God will raise up those who can minister the truth in​ these days and point people to​ salvation through faith in​ the Lord Jesus.
2. Distribute leaflets, magazines, books and videos designed to​ make people aware of​ the coming of​ the Lord and the way of​ salvation (we can supply).
3. Organise a​ Bible study looking at​ the issues of​ the end times (we have produced a​ series of​ Bible studies on this subject – The Omega Course, available for £1 including postage).
4. Organise a​ meeting (in a​ home or​ in​ a​ church) to​ show a​ film about the end times and invite non Christians along. Study yourself so you are able to​ show people troubled by what is​ happening in​ the world that Jesus is​ coming again and how to​ find faith in​ Him.

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