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5.0 out of 5 stars Purpose Driven Church
Good reading. This in a wonderful insightful book that everyone involved in a church setting should read. Much can be learned from this book.
Published 18 months ago by Helen Mason

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Adopting North American Culture Both Good and Bad
There has been a movement among missionaries and mission boards to encourage indigenous churches rather than merely exporting our culture to the rest of the world. The argument runs that the Gospel must always be enfleshed or embodied in a people and its culture. We cannot deny that the Good News of Jesus Christ must be spoken in particular human languages. Forcing...
Published on April 9 2004 by James


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5.0 out of 5 stars Purpose Driven Church, Jan. 8 2013
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This review is from: Purpose Driven Church (Paperback)
Good reading. This in a wonderful insightful book that everyone involved in a church setting should read. Much can be learned from this book.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Adopting North American Culture Both Good and Bad, April 9 2004
By 
James (United States of America) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Purpose Driven Church (Hardcover)
There has been a movement among missionaries and mission boards to encourage indigenous churches rather than merely exporting our culture to the rest of the world. The argument runs that the Gospel must always be enfleshed or embodied in a people and its culture. We cannot deny that the Good News of Jesus Christ must be spoken in particular human languages. Forcing Africans to worship like Scotsmen, does a disservice to African culture and the Gospel.
As I read Rick Warren's book, the Purpose Driven Church, I thought about this current trend in mission. Whether we like it or not, Rick Warren's Saddleback Church is a church indigenous to Southern California at the end of the twentieth century. Warren has attempted to translate the Gospel into the language of young, suburban professionals. As Paul quoted Stoic poets on Mars Hill, Rick Warren can comfortably quote Peter Drucker and utilize the marketing techniques of Starbucks. Anyone interested doing ministry in this culture can learn something from this book, especially if we take Rick Warren at his word--"Read this book like you'd eat fish: Pick out the meat and throw away the bones" (pg 71).
That being said, there is a danger. As the Gospel is expressed in culture, it must also critique the culture. Our sinfulness is pervasive, and the Gospel should expose the evils of our culture for what they are. Rick Warren subtitles his book, "Growth Without Compromising Your Message and Mission," but on several instances he compromises the Good News to the culture.
For example, we live in a self-segregated society. We routinely segregate white from black, rich from poor, and young from old. The Purpose Drive Church perpetuates these separation by slavishly focusing on target audiences. A church filled with only Saddleback Sams and Samanthas are a betrayal to Pentecost where "your sons and your daughters will prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams" (Acts 1:17-21). Rick Warren may suggest that Saddleback is only part of the greater Church. Others may be called to evangelize other target audiences. He states, "I feel right at home with entrepreneurial businessmen, managers, and professions. In fact, I've noticed that they are attracted to my ministry. It's nothing I planned, it's just the way God wired me" (pg 176). Perhaps that is true, but it reminds me of an observation that a friend made in seminary, "Isn't amazing that God calls so many people to pastor affluent, white suburban churches?"
We also live in a competitive culture which is inherently results-oriented. On occasion Rick Warren seems to replace the grace of God with a works-righteousness preached by the culture. In the beginning of the book, the author writes, "Only God makes the church grow" (pg 14). Later however, he uses the Bible's teaching on fruitfulness as a guilt trip. He states, "God expects both faithfulness and fruitfulness" (pg 62). Although he quotes from John 15, nothing is made of Jesus' admonition: "He who abides in me, and I in him, he bears much fruit; for apart from me you can do nothing." Fruitfulness grows out of faithfulness. Moreover, Rick Warren exclusively defines fruitfulness as conversions: "The fruit of a believer is another believer" (pg 63). There is no mention of the fruit of the Spirit. Rick Warren seems to imply that churches which are not growing, must not be bearing any fruit.
Rick Warren does have some important things to say. I appreciate his desire to move Christians beyond membership and into ministry and mission. Three cheers for his statement: "I believe that you measure the health or strength of a church by its sending capacity rather than its seating capacity" (pg 32). Nonetheless, while reaching out to the culture, the Purpose Driven Church should beware becoming too much like the culture.
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1.0 out of 5 stars Compromising God to Promote Warren's Ego, June 7 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: Purpose Driven Church (Audio CD)
Here it is, Rick Warren's latest Purpose-Drivel ® Corporation's latest marketing ploy. The insistent promotion of the Purpose-Drivel ® Life is nothing but an affront to Christian decency and blasphemous attack on Jesus. So far, the Purpose-Drivel ® Corporation's resin cross, also created to pad Warren's Disney-esque Church hasn't shown up on Amazon but it IS available for viewing on his publisher's site. This latest book makes a mockery of Christianity and should not be considered by anyone who is truly intent on seeking God's grace. Remember, Rick, "the meek shall inherit the Earth!"
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2.0 out of 5 stars I'm Sure It's Meant To Help, But, May 14 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: Purpose Driven Church (Hardcover)
I see alot of churches popping up based off this book and I have even attended. But I've noticed that many are trying to be "pop" churches, some to the effect of making the church seem cheap. And they are all looking more to this book than the actual Bible, which should be the real insperation for church building.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Not very good.., May 4 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: Purpose Driven Church (Hardcover)
I could only read an hour of this. I really liked, 'Purpose Driven Life' but this is hardly as good.
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5.0 out of 5 stars PRACTICAL, April 3 2004
This review is from: Purpose Driven Church (Hardcover)
I've been in the ministry for 12 years and most of that time felt lost in terms of allowing God to grow His church. I would pray and seek His face, but it just seemed that when things would happen, it would kinda happen haphazardly.
Purpose Driven church gave me the tools to think through and be intentional about the purposes of the church. It provided an important model for me to be proactive in helping the church do what it is called to do. Thanks Rick!
P.S. (...)
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5.0 out of 5 stars For church builders... in other words YOU not just Pastors, March 1 2004
By 
Greg Perry (Oklahoma) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Purpose Driven Church (Hardcover)
It's sad that a lot of people will read Warren's Purpose-Driven Life book (and they should) and get so much out of it, and then they might even pick this one up but then... they may put it back thinking it's for a Deacon board but not for the average Christian.
WRONG!
Yes, this entire book is about building a church. yes, a Pastor will richly receive incredibly useful, hands-on advice on the best way to grow a congregation, but what often is overlooked here is that the congregational members should ALSO understand how to grow the church! The church IS the congregation!!!
I assure you that if you are a church member and hold no position of authority in that church, and if you are the ONLY one who reads this book, you STILL will be able to grow your church in many ways. Wouldn't it be nice to know that you helped to increase the congregation, NOT to add to numbers but to add to God's Kingdom?
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5.0 out of 5 stars Finally, A Balanced Approach, Jan. 11 2004
This review is from: Purpose Driven Church (Hardcover)
Maybe I found this book to be a gift from God because it met my needs. I carefully read this book 3 times cover to cover before attending Rick Warren's seminar in Va. Oct.'03. Two things stood out: 1) The book is great but one should follow up with seminar to get the most out of it. There are gaps in the book that the seminar takes care of. 2) Do NOT attend a seminar till you have first the book or you will be lost. I have read many church growth books over 30 years and can say that this is finally a balanced approach to the subject. A balance between God's Word; man's methods and the Holy Spirit leading.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Book Lives Up To Its Claims!, Dec 19 2003
This review is from: Purpose Driven Church (Hardcover)
One of the first things presented in this book is that the principles that work at the Saddleback Church, may not work everywhere. The name Rick Warren gets tossed around by those who praise him and by those who blame him. But he declares right away that these are not universal principles.
That said, this is a well written book that reads smoothly and provides a fresh approach to evangelism. This is a book for church leaders. My fear is that church members will decide their pastor is not doing his job because he doesn't practice the Purpose Driven Church principles.
If a person wants their pastor to consider the things presented in this book, buy the book for him, but don't read the book yourself and then try to implement the practices described inside.
Church's that begin as Purpose Driven Churches will be much more effective in applying these principles than a church that is already established.
Read this book with caution and don't change churches because you think this sounds exciting.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The right way to think on growing a church, Nov. 11 2003
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This review is from: Purpose Driven Church (Hardcover)
Many of the negative critiques I've read of this book show that the author of the critique didn't read it very well. Rick's first statement is that the Gospel cannot be comprimised. Everything else is fair game. For those who don't believe this, I assume then that your church services are preached in hebrew, aramic and ancient greek as it was written? Cultures change and the method for spreading the word must as well. The purpose driven church is a road map for your church to execute powerfully the great commision.
Rick's book gives a powerful, refreshing insight into how to build a healthy, loving church and fulfill the great commision and execute the two greatest commandments.
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Purpose Driven Church
Purpose Driven Church by Rick Warren (Paperback - Feb. 2 1996)
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