Endtime Prophets

Rick Warren's False Teachings

Follow along as we examine Rick Warren's interpretation of Bible passages so you can make up your own mind to see if his books are biblically based.

Scriptural Flaws in the "Purpose Driven Life"

On pages 9-10 of Rick Warren's "Purpose Driven Life", Rick states: "Whenever God wanted to prepare someone for his purposes, he took 40 days" and then he lists eight examples from scripture that supposedly support his claim. A 40 day spiritual journey is a good thing, but is it established from Scripture?

The following analysis of Rick Warren's eight examples shows how each one has been misinterpreted:

  • "Noah's life was transformed by 40 days of rain." No, Noah had already been transformed through a life time of following God and preaching repentance for 120 years before the 40 days of rain. And the beginning of the rain was a judgment on the people of the earth — they drowned. They didn't find their purpose. Noah and his family already knew their purpose (see Genesis 6-9).
  • "Moses was transformed by 40 days on Mount Sinai" Not so! Moses was given his purpose long before Mt. Sinai at the burning bush — to lead God's people, Israel, out of Egypt (Exodus 3:21-24).
  • "The spies were transformed by 40 days in the Promised Land." Not so! One each of the 12 tribes went to spy the land and it took them 40 days before they returned but they were already given their "purpose" before they left, and only 2 of the 12 were not afraid to take possession of the land when they returned (Caleb and Joshua). God punished all the people for a lack of faith by making them wander in the desert for another 40 years. No transformation of the people there (Numbers 13).
  • "David was transformed by Goliath's 40 day challenge." Not so! David was already a man after God's heart at a much younger age and assigned his "purpose" — to be the king of Isreal (1 Samuel 13).
  • "Elijah was transformed when God gave him 40 days of strength from a single meal." Not so! It was "2" meals and Elijah had already been given his purpose (1 Kings 19).
  • "The entire city of Nineveh was transformed when God gave the people 40 days to change." Not so! They repented long before the 40 days were up. Also, they weren't Christians or Jews and were therefore not seeking God's purpose, so this verse is also misapplied (see the book of Jonah).
  • "Jesus was empowered by 40 days in the wilderness." Not so! The Holy Spirit fell upon Jesus when he was baptized (before he went into the wilderness) so he already had "power", besides already having the "power" being the creator of the universe, and he already knew his "purpose" -- to die on the cross for mankind (Matt 4, Mark 1, Luke 4).
  • "The disciples were transformed by 40 days with Jesus after his resurrection." Not so! They already had their "purpose" — sent out to all the nations. And the Bible only records what Jesus did after the Resurrection, not the disciples. Also the Holy Spirit came upon the disciples after 50 days, not 40 (Acts 1:3).

If Rick Warren can't interpret even one of the above verses correctly why should we listen to him? And why should we follow a 40 day endeavor to find our purpose (and buy another one of Rick Warren's books to do it) when there is no scriptural basis for it? We can find our purpose by reading God's Word, the Bible.

Lori Eldridge
Copyright © April 1, 2012 - updated 10-24-20
All Rights Reserved

Other Websites exposing Rick Warren's Twisting of Scripture

A video called Church of Tares exposing those who are in the Church Growth movement, including Rick Warren, and how they compromise the Gospel to increase attendance at their "churches".

A great video exposing Rick Warren's association with Muslims - even praying to the Muslim god at Obama's Inauguration Rick Warren, Emergents and Muslims

The Light House Trails Research site exposes more of Rick Warren's twisting of scripture, misuse of Jesus' teachings, and his use of New Age teachings in his "new and improved" 2012 Expanded edition of The Purpose Driven Life in their article Rick Warren retains unbiblical postion in new 2012 Edition of the Purpose Driven Life.

The Jesus is Savior website has posted an article published in the Foundation, a magazine of Biblical Fundamentalism, which pointed out the flawed hermeneutics and misuse and misapplication of some Biblical texts in Warren's The Purpose Drive Life and 40 Days of Purpose in their Warning! The Purpose-Driven Life is Heresy!

Rick Warren is also distorting the truth about Islam when he is trying to bring Christians and Muslim's together (Chrislam) and claiming that the Muslim god is the God of the Christian Bible: Rick Warren builds bridge to Muslims.

Warren is fullflling the endtimes prophecy re Apostacy in the Church before Christ returns:

For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they draw to themselves teachers, having itching ears; . . ." (2 Timothy 4:3)