Tuesday, March 31, 2009

It's Even Worse Than I Thought

Update on yesterday's post. Apparently my little poking fun at the Rick Warren having baptized 800 marathon while talking about small groups really missed the mark. It is much worse than that! There was an actual attempt to reproduce the day of Pentecost with 3,000 baptisms. Here is the announcement.
Two thousand years ago - the Day of Pentecost was the first day of the Christian Church. Acts 2:41 tells us, "About 3,000 people were baptized and joined the church that day." If you'll join us this weekend, history could be repeated at Saddleback! Want to make history?

Which of these requirements do you need to complete this Saturday?

1. Open your heart to Jesus Christ. Click here to learn more.
2. Attend Class 101: Discovering Your Church Family. Sign up.
3. Sign our membership covenant (explained in class).
4. Be baptized the way Jesus commanded and modeled for us.
(Many of us were baptized as kids on our parent's faith. Jesus modeled believer's baptism at age 30 when he was baptized in the Jordan River) It would be my privilege to baptize you after Class 101.

YOU CAN FINISH ALL 4 REQUIREMENTS IN ONE DAY - THIS SATURDAY!

EIGHT REASONS TO JOIN THIS SATURDAY & NOT PROCRASTINATE:

1. I'm personally teaching Class 101 for the first time in ten years.

2. I'm personally baptizing after Class and you'll receive a photo & baptism certificate.

3. You'll get a free one year subscription to Purpose Driven Connection magazine. (Never offered before)

4. You'll get free copy of The Purpose Driven Church book.

5. Your name will be included in the historical list of Saddleback Pioneer Members who joined in our first 30 years. (This Easter is our 30th Easter and I want you included in this list.)

6. The class is 1 hour shorter than normal. You can watch session 3 here online now.

7. You'll be a part of making Christian history! The largest membership class ever!

8. We love you & want you in our family. There is no good reason to procrastinate.

I was asked, "Rick, If you could wish for anything to celebrate your 30 years of service at Saddleback, what would you dream of?" I said, "To experience a repeat of Pentecost - and see 3,000 people affirm their faith and join our church family on a single day." Will you be a part of making this a reality?
And here is the ending,
This is going to be fun. You're the greatest. See you Saturday!

Pastor Rick
Rick Warren
Saddleback Church
Purpose Driven Network
P.E.A.C.E. Coalition

I guess the necessity of preaching that actually brings about conviction of sin and true conversion of the soul is simply out of touch with reality. Well, at least it will be fun.

2 comments:

Cory said...

"I'm personally baptizing after Class and you'll receive a photo & baptism certificate"
Hmmm...seems like Paul had a few things to say about that mentality in I Corinthians. "What then is Apollos? What is Paul? Servants through whom you believed as the Lord assigned to each."
The Corinthians were treating their baptisms like spiritual talismans and celebrating the celebrity preacher that baptized them rather than celebrating Christ. It looks like Saddleback members will now have the same opportunity. Heartbreaking.

Howard Fisher said...

What really bugs me is this arrogance.

"If you'll join us this weekend, history could be repeated at Saddleback! Want to make history?"

To compare yourself with the preaching of Peter at the beginning of Acts and to compare the unregenerated people that Saddleback is trying to market with the conversion of 3,000 under Peter's preaching, is simply disgusting.

This ain't history. Not by a looooong shot. God may judge it as an irreverent event in the history of the church, but it is not historically worthy to be compared to anything Acts. The Holy Spirit's work ought not to be offended and trivialized in such a manner.