Chapter Ten:

Purpose-Driven “No Matter What it Costs”

Sacrificing Righteousness and Holiness


“If you will commit to fulfilling your mission in life no matter what it costs, you will experience the blessing of God in ways that few people ever experience. There is almost nothing God won’t do for the man or woman who is committed to serving the kingdom of God. Jesus has promised, ‘[God] will give you all you need from day to day if you live for him and make the Kingdom of God your primary concern.’ [endnote: Matthew 6:33 (NLT)]” (PDL; pp. 286-287; first brackets in the original; bold added)

Looking at the fruit of Rick Warren’s Purpose-Driven Paradigm, “no matter what it costs” has already included the high costs of sacrificing truth, righteousness, holiness, and obedience to God. Indeed, righteousness has been deleted again in his very paragraph of declaring “no matter what it costs.” The version that he chose to quote has deleted essential truth from Scripture:


“But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” (Matthew 6:33)

The Kingdom of God can only be sought through the righteousness of God because His Kingdom consists only of those who have been truly born again by the Holy Spirit through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, thereby receiving His imputed righteousness.

Rick Warren’s unscriptural claim that fulfilling your mission “no matter what it costs” will bring God’s blessing in ways that only a “few people” experience is completely presumptuous and erroneous. God reiterates throughout His uncorrupted Holy Scriptures that His blessings are reserved for the righteous.

Sacrificing the Truth of the Faith

On November 22, 2004, in one of his interviews with Rick Warren, Larry King asked:


“What is the purpose-driven life? And can non-Christians lead one?”1

Excellent question! Would the Lord Jesus Christ have “modeled” a life or taught others how to live a life that non-Christians (non-followers of Christ) could lead? And would this be “the work that brought glory to God”?


“Jesus modeled a purpose-driven life, and he taught others how to live it, too. That was the ‘work’ that brought glory to God.” (PDL; p. 310; emphasis added)

Regarding the work of God, the Word of God has this to say:


“Then said they unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God? Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.” (John 6:28-29)

There is a huge difference between Jesus being our “model” Whom we are to “imitate” in living a purpose-driven life and Jesus being our Lord and Saviour in Whom we are to believe and before Whom we are to kneel. Yet according to Rick Warren in this same interview, “This book has enormous cross-over and everybody’s reading it” (emphasis added). “Does that mean that a Jew, a Muslim, an agnostic, an atheist could benefit from this book?” asked Larry King. To which Rick Warren replied, “If that’s the question, sure. Anybody can benefit from it.” He then proceeded to give an example of a Jewish lady passing it on to a Muslim lady.2

This would be fantastic if the saving, uncorrupted Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ was actually in this book for the world to read so they could believe on him whom he hath sent.” But then the book would be offensive to the world instead of embraced by it.

The Purpose Driven Life is even praised on a website devoted to promoting Vijay Eswaran’s book In the Sphere of Silence, which is overtly steeped in Eastern (specifically Hindu) religious beliefs and practices. The praise was part of a favorable review of Eswaran’s book:


“Of late, books have come into the scene and continue to change or enrich lives. The bestseller, ‘Purpose-Driven Life,’ has crossed religious boundaries to be a handy practical guide to people.” (Emphasis added)3

On December 2, 2005 during another of Larry King’s interviews of Rick Warren, a caller identifying themself as of the “Jewish faith” commented that they were currently reading Rick Warren’s book and asked him:


“I just wanted to know one question. How did you get a turning point to get your purpose-driven life?”

Notice that they did not see the need for the Lord Jesus Christ in their reading of his book, but merely getting one’s “purpose-driven life.” Likewise, Rick Warren didn’t see the need to point that out. His typical feel-good, man-centered answer to the caller’s question included nothing about the Lord Jesus Christ or the necessity of believing in Him as the way to God:


“I think it wasn’t one turning point. I think over a period of time, as I began to study the Bible over and over, I kept seeing this concept that you are not an accident, that there are accidental parents, but there are no accidental children. There are illegitimate parents, but there are no illegitimate children.


“In other words, your parents may not have planned you, but God did. And honestly, it really doesn’t matter whether your parents were good or bad or indifferent. The fact is the reason they were your parents is God chose them because they had just the right DNA that would create you.


“And God was more interested in making you than he was in their parenting skills, so they might have been terrible parents or they might have even abandoned you, and that concept that you’re not an accident, you’re made to last forever, you were made by God and for God, and until you understand that, life doesn’t make sense.” —Rick Warren4

The truth of the faith is being sacrificed in favor of feel-good, man-centered teachings that facilitate interfaith unity. It soon won’t matter which religion’s local church people attend, especially since it is believed that all religions (faiths) “have a portion of the truth.” With this belief, what difference would it make in the new way of thinking which religion you decide to become “purpose-driven” in?


“And by the way, there’s truth in every religion. Christians believe that there’s truth in every religion. But we just believe that there’s one savior. We believe we can learn truth -- I’ve learned a lot of truth from different religions. Because they all have a portion of the truth. I just believe there is one savior, Jesus Christ.” —Rick Warren (Emphasis added)5

Yet the Lord Jesus Christ said:


“Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” (John 14:6)

Rick Warren’s statement that “they all have a portion of the truth” actually negates the belief in “one savior” by denying that Jesus Christ is the truth. God’s Holy Scriptures also specifically say that “truth came by Jesus Christ” (John 1:17). To say that truth is in other religions is to say that Jesus Christ is in other religions. This denies that the faith of Christianity is “the faith which was once delivered unto the saints” (Jude 1:3).

Without Jesus Christ, religions (faiths) have no portion of the truth. Jesus Christ cannot be parceled out. Furthermore, the doctrine of Christ which distinguishes between having the Lord Jesus Christ and having another “Jesus” or another “Christ” is not found in other religions (faiths). Jesus Christ, Who is the truth not a truth, said:


“… If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; and ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” (John 8:31-32)


“Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth …” (John 16:13)


“Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.” (John 14:17)

The truth is not in any other religion (faith) because the Lord Jesus Christ is not in any other religion, and neither is His Word (the Holy Scriptures) nor the Holy Spirit. Everything else is false and counterfeit and found on the broad way, not on the Lord Jesus Christ’s narrow way of the truth of the faith.

Yes, the Lord Jesus Christ and His truth are divisive and exclusive of all who refuse to believe. He is Who He is, regardless of what people believe or want. People’s beliefs do not determine Who He is. Rather, Who He is needs to determine people’s beliefs. Time is running out. All who receive not the love of the truth will be sent strong delusion from God Himself so they will believe a damning lie (e.g., see 2 Thessalonians 2).

The Angel of light’s purpose of uniting all people and religions (faiths) into a global interfaith unity will be completed by his coming false “Christ.” The elimination of “non-essential” doctrines that divide the faiths, and the belief that all faiths have part of the truth actually further the Master Deceiver’s work:


“Today, slowly, the concept of a world religion and the need for its emergence are widely desired and worked for. The fusion of faiths is now a field for discussion. Workers in the field of religion will formulate the universal platform of the new world religion. It is a work of loving synthesis and will emphasize the unity and the fellowship of the spirit.… The platform of the new world religion will be built by many groups, working under the inspiration of the Christ.…


“The churches in the West need also to realize that basically there is only one Church, but it is not necessarily only the orthodox Christian institution. God works in many ways, through many faiths and religious agencies; this is one reason for the elimination of non-essential doctrines. By the emphasizing of the essential doctrines and in their union will the fullness of truth be revealed. This, the new world religion will do …” —Alice Bailey & Djwhal Khul (Emphasis added)6

On July 21, 2003, USA TODAY reported:


“Yet Warren’s pastor-training programs welcome Catholics, Methodists, Mormons, Jews and ordained women.


“‘I’m not going to get into a debate over the non-essentials. I won’t try to change other denominations. Why be divisive?’ he [Rick Warren] asks, citing as his model Billy Graham, ‘a statesman for Christ ministering across barriers.’” (Emphasis added)7

Notice that other religions (faiths), with either a false “Jesus” or no Jesus, are merely referred to here as “other denominations.” Rick Warren’s programs have been defended with the correction that Mormons and Jews were reputedly inserted here by USA TODAY.8 Yet keep in mind that Mormonism is already considered a Christian “denomination” by a growing number of professing Christian leaders, as is Catholicism which is accurately included by USA TODAY because there are “Purpose Driven Catholics.”9

Furthermore, it is good that Rick Warren is said to recognize that Mormonism and Judaism are other religions,10 but, nevertheless, he taught his “preaching seminar” to the rabbis at the University of Judaism last June.11 And this is the point! Doctrines are being set aside as non-essential in favor of watered-down purpose that transcends religious barriers and facilitates interfaith unity.

Although the Lord Jesus Christ said He came to bring “division” (Luke 12:51), “Why be divisive?” the world asks. “We won’t join you on the narrow way of division and separateness, but why don’t you join us on the broad way of unity and Oneness?”

Rick Warren was interviewed by The Dallas Morning News before he spoke at the Global Day of Prayer event,12 held on May 15, 2005. He was asked:


“You’ve become a very popular public speaker. As you’ve traveled, have you noticed any local differences in how your message is received?”

His response was:


“Not at all.… It’s cross-cultural -- I get letters from Hindus, from Muslims. [The Purpose Driven Life] didn’t get niched as a religious book.” (Brackets in the original; emphasis added)13

This latest quote follows the emerging pattern of interfaith unity. Hindus and Muslims are referred to here as being from different cultures not religions. This is another deceptive, inclusive, unifying trend in today’s Christianity that has been growing as it increasingly merges with the broad way.


“The Purpose Driven Church ministry philosophy is a transferable biblical process, successful in every culture, in every denomination, in churches of every size and shape.” —PD Staff14

Because The Purpose Driven Life is based more on the teachings of the world than on the Holy Scriptures, this book did not get “niched as a religious book” and is therefore acceptable to those in different religions (faiths) or no religion. This negates its claims to prepare its readers for eternity.

The global transformation—transforming Christianity into a united Churchianity—continues unabated, as the truth of the faith is sacrificed in the name of purpose.


“Purpose Driven’s strategy dovetails easily into the polity of many denominations. We often describe it as a computer chip that can be used in any form of computer.” —PurposeDriven (Emphasis added)15


“‘Personal computers have brand names. But inside every pc is an Intel chip and an operating system, Windows,’ Warren says. ‘The Purpose Driven paradigm is the Intel chip for the 21st-century church and the Windows system of the 21st-century church.’” (Emphasis added)16

The narrow way of the Lord God and His truth cannot be walked on by unbelievers. If it could, then God’s Word would be a lie and salvation would be universal. If other religions (faiths) can be taught how to become purpose-driven, then God and His truth are not the center of the purpose-driven life. Besides, the exaltation of purpose above God and His truth has already been clearly evidenced in The Power of Purpose competition, which Rick Warren said was “exactly what [he] hoped for” when writing The Purpose Driven Life.

Incidentally, his statement that every PC has an Intel chip inside is not true; some of them have AMD chips. Similarly, the driving chip that would be universal in all churches can also be resisted. The Purpose-Driven Paradigm can be resisted by any person or pastor or church that cares more about walking in the Spirit and making disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ than being driven by an unscriptural Paradigm and making disciples of Rick Warren. Nevertheless, the “whole new way of thinking and acting” continues to metastasize.

Sacrificing the Mind of Christ


“It has never been easier in history to fulfill your commission to go to the whole world. The great barriers are no longer distance, cost, or transportation. The only barrier is the way we think. To be a world-class Christian you must make some mental shifts. Your perspective and attitudes must change.” (PDL; p. 299; bold added)

Rick Warren automatically assumes that Christians have the wrong perspective and attitudes. He has even stated that one of the problems with our perspective and the way we think is that we are thinking like believers, so we must mentally shift into thinking like unbelievers! Believe it or not, in an article titled, “We Must Learn To Think Like Unbelievers,” he actually says:


“The longer you’re a believer, the less you think like an unbeliever.… Because I’ve been a Christian for most of my life, I think like a Christian. I don’t normally think like an unbeliever. Worse than that, I tend to think like a pastor and that’s even farther removed from an unbeliever’s mind-set! That means I must intentionally change mental gears when seeking to relate to non-Christians.” —Rick Warren (Emphasis added)17

In an interview with, he actually goes even further in a similar statement:


“The secret of reaching unbelievers is learning to think like an unbeliever. But the problem is - the longer you’re a Christian, the less you think like an unbeliever. And if you’re a seminary-trained pastor, you’re even more removed from unbelievers. You think like a pastor, not a pagan. So you have to intentionally learn to think like an unbeliever again. Paul says, ‘I become all things to all men so I may, in some way, win some.’” —Rick Warren (Emphasis added)18

Nowhere in God’s Word does the holy Lord God tell us that we are to conform our behavior and thinking to that of the unbelieving and pagan world so we can “relate to” or “reach” unbelievers! Not even in 1 Corinthians 9:22—a verse which is repeatedly twisted and abused by those who seek to justify their worldly behaviors—does Scripture say this.

Although Rick Warren goes on to say that the message is not to be compromised or changed, his changing methods do just that. In order to “intentionally learn to think like an unbeliever” and “a pagan,” “the mind of Christ” which we have through the Holy Spirit (see 1 Corinthians 2:12-16) must be set aside. In the article, “We Must Learn To Think Like Unbelievers,” Rick Warren also admits:


“I began Saddleback Church by going door-to-door for twelve weeks and surveying the unchurched in my area. I wrote down in my notebook five questions I would use to start Saddleback.…


“If they said yes [to ‘actively attending any church’], I thanked them and moved on to the next home. I didn’t bother asking the other three questions because I didn’t want to color the survey with the opinions of believers.” (Emphasis added)19

According to his own admission, Saddleback Church has been deliberately founded on the opinions of unbelievers—who “cannot please God.”


“But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.” (Hebrews 11:6)


“For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit. For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.” (Romans 8:5-8)

Starting churches that please unbelievers (enemies of God) does not serve Christ.


“For do I now persuade men, or God? or do I seek to please men? for if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ.” (Galatians 1:10)

And giving greater importance to starting churches that please unbelievers than to telling them about the Lord Jesus Christ does not serve the world, either.


“Now you’ve heard me say many times that the greatest thing you can do with your life is tell somebody about Jesus and invite them to come to know him.… And I’ve always said that that was the greatest thing you could do with your life. I was wrong. There is one thing you could do greater than share Jesus Christ with somebody, and it is help start a church.” —Rick Warren (Emphasis added)20

The full impact of his final sentence in this quote—as well as of his earlier quote regarding not wanting “to color the survey with the opinions of believers”—is revealed in a statement Rick Warren made on May 23, 2005. It was at the Pew Forum’s biannual Faith Angle Conference in a discussion on “Myths of the Modern Mega-Church.” Providing further insight into his door-to-door survey that started his church, sadly and unbelievably he discloses the far greater importance of Churchianity over Christianity. Rick Warren admitted:


“So then I asked myself, what kind of church are we going to be? And I decided, why don’t we be a church for people who hate church?… And so I went out and for twelve weeks I went door to door, and I knocked on homes for about 12 weeks and just took an opinion poll. I had a survey with me. I just said, ‘My name is Rick Warren. I’m not here to sell you anything, I’m not here to convert you, I’m not here to witness to you. I just want to ask you three or four questions. Question number one: Are you an active member of a local church – of any kind of religion – synagogue, mosque, whatever?’ If they said yes, I said, ‘Great, God bless you, keep going,’ and I politely excused myself and went to the next home. When I’d find somebody who’d say, ‘No, I don’t go anywhere,’ I’d say, ‘Perfect; you’re just the kind of guy I want to talk to. This is great, you don’t go anywhere. So let me ask you a question. Why do you think most people don’t attend church?’ And I just wrote the answers down. I asked, ‘If you were looking for a church, what kind of things would you look for?’ And I’d just list them. ‘What advice would you give to me as the pastor of a new church? How can I help you?’ So they’d say, ‘I think churches exist for the community; not vice versa,’ and I’d write that down.” —Rick Warren (Emphasis added)21

What Rick Warren did here in starting his church shows the following:


         Starting a church supersedes giving the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ.


         Attending a local church of any religion (faith) supersedes knowing the Lord Jesus Christ for all eternity.


         Being purpose-driven supersedes helping others become a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ and gain eternal salvation.

Rick Warren was purpose-driven. Although the loving Lord God is “not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance” (2 Peter 3:9), helping people come to a belief in the truth was not Rick Warren’s intention—“I’m not here to convert you, I’m not here to witness to you.” His purpose was to start a church based on the opinions of unbelievers only. Following God’s purpose to help people believe would have defeated his own purpose.

But he even went the opposite direction of God’s purpose. Regardless of the fact that these religions (faiths) are on the broad way leading to eternal destruction, he told them to “keep going” to their local churches “of any kind of religion,” and he praised and blessed these spiritually lost people for attending them. He definitely “intentionally change[d] mental gears when seeking to relate to [these] non-Christians”!

There is only one god who would be pleased with this behavior and whose purposes would be served with it. It isn’t the loving Lord God of mercy and truth Who gives us His truth, salvation, and life on His narrow way -- where the only “religion” that is found is the faith of the Lord Jesus Christ.


“For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth. For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.” (1 Timothy 2:3-5)

In the new way of thinking, what difference does it make which religion’s local church people belong to? After all, purpose-driven churches are more about who man is than Who God is.

Rick Warren’s purpose-driven method of starting a church that will please unbelievers is popular:


“This survey has been reprinted in dozens of books and articles. Several thousand churches have now used these 5 questions in their own communities. One denomination that I consulted with used these questions to start 102 new churches on a single day! If you haven’t ever surveyed the unchurched in your area I strongly recommend that you do.” —Rick Warren22

Now the global enormity of the purpose-driven method is even bringing in a “new reformation” on behavior and purpose.


“In 1980, a new kind of church was birthed that has impacted Christianity worldwide. The vision has now been planted in more than 150 countries - transforming millions of lives through tens of thousands of purpose driven churches around the globe.


“The official inauguration of the global Purpose Driven movement will be celebrated at the anniversary of Saddleback Church in the 45,000 seat Angels Stadium. Our founding pastor, Rick Warren, will share our passion and vision for a new spiritual reformation in the 21st century. We believe April 17, 2005 will be remembered as a watershed moment in history.” (Emphasis added)23

“Birthing” a new kind of church through interviewing enemies of God does not even come close to furthering God’s Kingdom.


“Except the Lord build the house, they labour in vain that build it …” (Psalm 127:1)

Nevertheless, this new kind of church is being taken on its “spiritual journey” with Rick Warren as its guide. This new kind of church is being trained in his man-centered Paradigm’s “groundbreaking manifesto on the meaning of life” -- its “blueprint for Christian living.” And “no matter what it costs,” this new kind of church is to be “the vanguard of a new reformation”:


“More than 400,000 churches have participated in the 40 Days of Purpose and 40 Days of Community modules that train their membership in the Purpose Driven paradigm.” —PD Staff (Emphasis added)24


“Saddleback Church is now but one among thousands of purpose driven churches -- the vanguard of a new reformation. Together we are transforming the 21st century church through God’s purposes.” —PD Staff25


Return to Chapter 9            Proceed to Chapter 11


1.  Interview with Rick Warren, CNN Larry King Live, Aired November 22, 2004, Transcript,

2.  Ibid.

3.  Dante Velasco, Reviews, In the Sphere of Silence,

4.  Interview with Rick Warren, CNN Larry King Live, Aired December 2, 2005, Transcript,

5.  Interview with Rick Warren, CNN Larry King Live, Aired November 22, 2004,

6.  Alice Bailey & Djwhal Khul, The Reappearance of the Christ, Chapter VI - The New World Religion,

7.  “This evangelist has a ‘Purpose’” by Cathy Lynn Grossman, USA TODAY, July 21, 2003,

8.  Richard Abanes, Rick Warren and the Purpose that Drives Him, p. 90.

9.  See “Purpose Driven Catholics,” PurposeDriven, and

10. Richard Abanes, Rick Warren and the Purpose that Drives Him, p. 90.

11. Discussion “Myths of the Modern Mega-Church,” May 23, 2005, the Pew Forum’s biannual Faith Angle conference on religion, politics and public life, Event Transcript,

12. For information on the Global Day of Prayer, building the Kingdom, and the second Reformation, see “The Global Day of Prayer: Part One” by Sarah Leslie, Discernment Newsletter, May/June 2005,; and “The Second Reformation: The Global Day of Prayer - Part Two” by Sarah Leslie; Discernment Newsletter, July/August 2005,

13. As quoted in “Pastor found ‘purpose’ in spreading God’s word” by Emily Ramshaw, The Dallas Morning News, May 16, 2005,; it is also posted at

14. “What is Purpose Driven?” by PD Staff,

15. “What is PurposeDriven?”, PurposeDriven,

16. “Purpose Driven in Rwanda” by Timothy C. Morgan, posted 9/23/05, Christianity Today, October 2005,

17. “We Must Learn To Think Like Unbelievers” by Rick Warren, Rick Warren’s Ministry Toolbox™, Issue #24, 10/17/2001,

18. As quoted in “Rick Warren Interview,”,

19. “We Must Learn To Think Like Unbelievers” by Rick Warren,

20. Rick Warren, Saddleback Church Service, November 2, 2003; transcribed from

21. As quoted in Discussion “Myths of the Modern Mega-Church,” May 23, 2005,

22. “We Must Learn To Think Like Unbelievers” by Rick Warren,

23. You are invited to the... 25th Anniversary Celebration of Saddleback Church,” PurposeDriven,

24. “Purpose Driven movement continues to gain momentum” by PD Staff,

25. “What is Purpose Driven?” by PD Staff,

Copyright © 2006 Tamara Hartzell. All rights reserved.