It’s The Gospel Stupid
Continuing on from yesterday where Todd Friel critiqued Rick Warren’s “gospel presentation” on the Fox network last Christmas . . . .
This ”gospel presentation” is just atrocious. It totally dismisses the penal substitutionary element of Christ’s atoning work on the cross. There is only one reason I can think of for avoiding the best part of the good news (that Christ endured the just wrath of God in the place of sinners who deserve it). To explain penal substitutionary atonement requires an explanation of why people deserve God's wrath and Pastor Warren just doesn’t seem to want to go there.
Not only was key information missing, but some of the information given was just plain false. The whole idea that Jesus died to give us a “second chance” shows either woeful ignorance or deliberate distortion of Scripture. The fact of the matter is that unregenerate men are “dead in trespasses and sin” (Ephesians 2:1) and a second chance is no use to a dead man, he needs the resurrection life that is found only in Christ. A second chance will only reaffirm our wicked sinful nature. We need to be regenerated and changed by God with the indwelling of His Holy Spirit into a new creature – Born Again. A “second chance” doesn’t even come close to God’s glorious plan of salvation.
Where was sin? Where was repentance? Where was judgment? Where was God’s Holiness? Not only was Rick Warren’s “gospel presentation” lacking – it was a complete swing and a miss. And here is the problem for Richard Abanes (Rick Warren’s cyberspace attack dog). He even wrote a book in response to Rick Warren’s critics but it never focused on the main issue.
Bill Clinton once said of the key issue in politics “It’s the economy stupid” (never thought I'd quote Billary). Well the key issue in Christianity – “It’s the Gospel stupid”. Many of Rick Warren's critics (including Pastor Ken Silva who had his website deleted) don't have a personal problem with Rick Warren, but they do have a major issue with the false gospel he preaches. Richard Abanes has spent a lot of energy defending Rick Warren without discussing the main point and contending over the core elements of the Once for All Delivered Gospel. Amidst all the noise he’s making in cyberspace, Richard Abanes is very silent on this issue.