Pro/Con of the "Purpose Driven" Phenomenon

Discussion in '2003 Archive' started by Dr. Bob, Sep 16, 2003.

  1. Dr. Bob

    Dr. Bob
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    Don't really care about anyone's OPINION on program or personality. Not concerned if you like or dislike Warren et al.

    I am looking for biblical principles/verses that drive your opinion.
     
  2. RTB

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    I don't know anything about it. Where can I get some info?

    Ronnie
     
  3. Gina B

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    One good "principle" I've seen is that of our church in general becoming more friendly. I forget what section of the book we were on at the time, but we were talking about opening up our homes and stuff to each other, knowing who the people in the church are, becoming one instead of everyone just coming and doing their own thing and leaving.
    One unbiblical thing and I don't know if this was in the book or it was something else was at the same time, saying that people who are shy and withdrawn are not being good Christians because they aren't doing the above. It was countered by a few who said that if people like me weren't talking and being social we couldn't gossip. :D (by the way I'm not anti-social, I just don't like to say too much to other people unless I have a reason...I'll be the first to go to someone who is crying but the last to go jump into a group of chattering people)
    So there ya have it, one good and one bad. Is this kinda what you were looking for or was that too opiniony? [​IMG]
    Gina
     
  4. donnA

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    WHAT! Gina not taking?
    now way.
     
  5. Lorelei

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    So are they selling salvation? They have "closed" registration for the fall, so if you want to experience this now, you will have to wait for the spring??? Honestly, if it works this good, why not tell us how to do it for free?

    I haven't read the book, I will admit that, but from the looks of this I don't need to. We were given a book that was inspired by the Holy Spirit, if that can't get people excited, why should this be more successful?

    ~Lorelei
     
  6. Joseph_Botwinick

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    I don't know if my criticism is fair or not, but here it goes:

    1. My Church is spending over $25,000 on this program in order for me to figure out what God's purpose for my life is. I only wonder why I couldn't read the Bible and figure that out through the work of the Holy Spirit?

    2. (I must say that I really don't think this next criticism is Warren's fault), but, it seems lately that my pastor has replaced the Bible with the "Purpose Driven Life" in his sermons. I honestly can't remember the last time he opened his Bible from the pulpit, which is really quite sad since this is the same pastor with whom I grew up who used to always preach from the Bible which is part of what led to my conviction unto salvation; the preaching of the Word of God.

    3. I wonder which Church Growth book Jonathon Edwards read.

    4. I wonder which Church Growth Program Jonathon Edwards used.

    5. I wonder if the scripture was good enough for the early Church and for Jesus, why it is not enough for the modern day Church.

    Joseph Botwinick
     
  7. SaggyWoman

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    I don't believe that it necessarily has anything to do with church growth per se. It is more about finding God's purpose for our life. Some have formulated this all along. Some don't have a clue.
     
  8. Joseph_Botwinick

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    That is indeed the gist of the Bible Study. But, if you ever read the book Purpose Driven Church, you see that it is an extension of the Church growth program of being a purpose driven church. I would repeat my question, either way: Why does my church need to spend $25,000 for us to figure out what God's purpose for our lives is? Why is it made to be so complicated? Why isn't the scripture good enough for the church anymore?

    Joseph Botwinick
     
  9. Taufgesinnter

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    I can't say about The Purpose Driven Life, because I haven't read it yet. However, that definitely wasn't in The Purpose Driven Church.
     
  10. Gina B

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    Right Tauf, it was in the PD Life study.
    Gina
     
  11. Taufgesinnter

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    No, they are selling training. If it is Purpose Driven Church training, then it is missionary training. And while workshops and videos and so on may be helpful for some people, all the essentials of this plan are included in the book that sells for only $10, not $25,000. However, many similar aspects are avilable for free at Willow Creek's website.
     
  12. Taufgesinnter

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    Well that's not good. I'll stick with the original book. As for shy people, they can't be excused from evangelizing, but if God made them shy they have a place and some way of being contagious Christians.
     
  13. Pastor Larry

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    I have read part of this book and it, like many others, does what your pastor should be doing every week ... taking biblical principles and applying them to daily living. It is a pretty decent book. This book is not a replacement for your Bible by any means and no one would say that it is. But it tries to make the case for how the Bible says life should be lived. It would be worth reading if for no other reason so that you can speak while knowing what you are talking about. I like the PD idea for the most part but am very wary of some aspects of it. But to speak from a position that knows nothing about it seems a little out of place to me.

    I too would be concerned with the cost. However, I know that they will discount the program severely for churches who cannot afford it. And I know that the books come at quite a discount for those in the program.
     
  14. Mark Osgatharp

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    Jesus Christ has already informed and empowered His churches - informed by the Bible and empowered by the Spirit. If we are not what we ought to be it is simply because we are not following the Lord's book and allowing the Lord's Spirit to control our lives.

    The whole "Purpose Driven" scheme is just so much snake oil. It stagger's the imagination to think that any church would be suckered by such a crass money grab.

    Mark Osgatharp
     
  15. Pastorba

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    I have read "The Purpose Driven Church" and am currently reading "The Purpose Driven Life." I would have to say that I truly enjoyed the Purpose Driven church. I think what I see as a pro of it is that many have read it and then looked at how they are "doing" ministry. For example, the book really asks what is our "purpose" as a church, now many would say, "We just want to serve Jesus." Which is a good response, the book just then asks the follow up question, "How?"

    For example, it helped me personally evaluate several of our programs. We are a small church with limited funds to operate on. So we must carefully choose where the money goes. Now the church being located 1 mile from a college campus, it may not make sense for us to put a large portion of our funds into "senior" ministries. That is just one example. But I think the book just helps us as leaders in the church be a little more focused on how and why we do things.

    For a negative. I think too many pastors, especially young ones (which I am) try to take everything they read in the book and try to force it upon their church. They do this by the way even though Warren says, these are principles not a blueprint for every church. I think people tire of pastors jumping on the "What's new and exciting in church growth."

    Just my opinions. But I do think the book has value if you can take the principles from the book and apply them to your specific situation.

    As far as the cost and them "selling salvation" it seems to me like we pay an awful lot for Sunday School curriculum, AWANA, etc., and we don't accuse them of "selling salvation."
     
  16. All about Grace

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    Why is the purpose-driven paradigm a positive contribution to the modern church???

    It helps a church discover and answer the "why" question: why do we/I exist?

    Whether you agree or disagree with how that answer defines itself in Southern California, one cannot argue that the question itself is essential to the spiritual health of a church.

    Most critics simply reveal their own lack of knowledge regarding the paradigm itself.

    $25,000 dollars??? If a church is spending that much, they are spending way beyond what is necessary.
     
  17. Pastor Larry

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    What makes you think that being a purpose driven church costs money??? I have read the book several times and not one time was I ever asked to send any money anywhere. Perhaps you are thinking of something else ... or perhaps you are simply uninformed.

    The five purpose of the purpose driven church idea are NT purposes. They are not additions to the Bible as you mistakenly assume. They are what the Bible teaches us we should be doing as a church. If you reject the Purpose driven idea, then you reject NT ecclesiology. You might not like how it looks in Southern California, as SBC says. Indeed I don't like how it looks at there. I have grace reservations about much of the "clothing" that it wears. But the skeletal frame is exactly what we are trying to do here and have been trying for a long time. What goes on in Southern California is not my concern. My concern is this church where I am at.

    Do not lead others to believe that the PD idea is adding to or replacing Scripture. Consider a kind of systematic theology for church purpose ... it is an assembling of the all the NT teaching on the church is an easy to understand framework. It is biblical.
     
  18. All about Grace

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    Wow Larry. I think we actually agree on what you are saying. The next thing I know you may be wearing Hawaiian shirts and having seeker services :D [​IMG]
     
  19. Pastor Larry

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    You never know :D

    Actually, my purpose drivenness would preclude me from having a "seeker service" per se. But that is a whole different issue. As I said (quoting what you said), I don't like the way it looks in Southern California but that doesn't mean the purposes are wrong. I would just carry them out differently.
     
  20. gb93433

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    I have seen plenty of people who would say the same thing. But they are not doing it. Sometimes we must dialog with others to find out things that we need help in that we didn’t even know about. In many ways books help us to do that. God gives wisdom to others that wee may not have.

    On the flip side of the coin we have a number of pastors that wouldn't give a thought to being sensitive to the needs of non-believers or anyone who may be different.

    For example a friend of mine who was a youth pastor of a chruch in the south led a black youth to Christ and invited him to the church. On Sunday some of the deacons stood at the front door and told the youth he was not welcome. They were purpose driven all right. They purposed not to let people who were different than them in. But Jesus lets all in.

    In the 1960's W.A. Criswell gave a sermon to his congregation at FBC, Dallas. The content of the sermon was being sensitive to letting black people in the congregation. In it he talked about how they supported a children's home and in that home were black people. Toward the end he says to the congregation something like, if one of those children came to Christ and wanted to come to church here would you let him in?

    We have the same sort of things going on in our churches today. If you wanted to know more about Christ or what was going on at a church would you go to a local church where you know were bigots that would shun you and despise you?

    A few years ago my family visited a church and people talked all around us. Not one person introduced himself until the pastor did first. We walked away and told ourselves, "We know where we are not going again."

    A few years ago I read a story about preaching. The author mentioned in the article that a pastor was complaining about how the congregation wasn't applying his sermons. So he asked the pastor if he could take a look at the sermon from the previous Sunday. The pastor gave him his copy of the sermon. They looked at the text and the author asked the pastor how he would apply the sermon. The pastor couldn't even give many ways on how to apply the sermon. He had one purpose and that was to give a sermon. But he gave a sermon without a real purpose for the listeners.

    In 2000 it was suggested that I attend the Purpose Driven Church Conference. I was against it. But I did go very reluctantly. What I heard there was very different than what I thought I read. I came away with a vison of reaching people more effectively. Since then I have been more at ease witnessing to people. I am more sensitive to others. The results show. I think more about the sermon I give trying to make sure that the congregation understands it. The language I use is much more simple. But what I found out is that the congregation understands the sermons better.

    I began to realize that so often even the congregation does understand a lot of theological language. I am convinced that the majority of people sitting in churches week after week really do not understand what salvation is. They often will tell you that one is saved from going to hell and it ends there. They do not even have a clue what it means to be saved and how it effects out entire being.

    When my daughter was in fourth grade she came home and asked me to explain some words I used in a sermon. She had written down exactly 50 words. [At the time she was the top student in her grade. She won the spelling bee and competed at the county level for her school (grades 1-8)] If she couldn't understand those words then there were probably many others who did not.

    I would challenge you to start asking some of your people to define some of the words you use in your sermon.

    I would say that many pastors if asked will tell you they want their church to grow. But then when they are asked about what steps they will take to help get there they really don't know what to do or how to get there. There probably isn't a pastor around that wouldn't say that he would like for the people to share their faith. But how is he doing that?
     

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