Rick Warren, the “purpose-driven life” pastor, signed the dhimmi apology that a large number of Christian leaders recently offered to Muslims. But he’s not sure what for. Don’t bother him with details! If there was ever something Christians did that was unjust or unkind to Muslims, Rick Warren is sorry for it!
“Rick Warren: ‘I always own up to mistakes,'” by Art Moore for WorldNetDaily.com: (thanks to all who sent this in):
LAKE FOREST, Calif. — Widely regarded by mainstream media as one of America’s most influential leaders, he’s met with dictators, apologized to Muslims on behalf of Christianity, accepted blame for global warming and invited pro-choice politicians to speak at his Southern California megachurch.
All of that, and more, raises red flags with a sizeable number of evangelicals who share the traditional theological and social views of Rick Warren’s Southern Baptist roots. The blue jeans-clad pastor of 22,000-strong Saddleback Church in Orange County says that with guidance from Billy Graham, he has intentionally tried to avoid engaging his critics. But on the heels of an appearance by Democratic Sen. Hillary Clinton at his church’s conference on AIDS, he welcomed the opportunity to sit down and talk with WND.
Last month, Warren drew some fire for signing a dialogue-seeking letter in which Christian theologians and ministers responded to an initiative by 138 Muslim leaders by apologizing for the medieval Crusades and “excesses in the war on terror.”
Asked specifically which excesses he had in mind, Warren replied:
“Ahhh, you know what “¦ I have no idea,” he said. “Because I didn’t sign it sentence-by-sentence.”
Similar to his endorsement of an initiative acknowledging man-made global warming, Warren said, “There might have been statements there I didn’t agree with, but generally I’m saying, I think it’s a good idea to get people talking.”
“It comes back to,” he said, referring to the letter to Muslims, “I am a pastor, not a politician. And what I’ve learned is that, in marriage if I’m trying to keep a divorce from happening “¦ I’ve found as long as I can get the husband and wife talking, they’re not going to divorce. The moment the talking stops the divorce is inevitable.”
Warren insisted he’s “not a Pollyanna, thinking getting different interfaith groups together is going to bring world peace.”
“We know that isn’t going to happen,” he said. “It just isn’t going to happen. That’s not what the Scripture says.”
All religions are not alike, he emphasized, and one can’t be a Christian and adhere to any other faith. But he argued, “There’s a difference between compromise and civility.”
As long as I’m talking with my enemy, Warren said, “he’s not sending a bomb my way.
No, but he may be trying to make you more susceptible to his efforts at subverting your society.
“Don’t think that you’re going to bring in the kingdom with dialogue, you’re not going to do it,” he clarified. “It isn’t going to happen. But it can keep things from escalating.”
He interjected that this approach has led to productive discussions with prominent political and religious leaders in the Muslim world.
“What I don’t talk about publicly is the talks with people who call me behind the scenes,” he said.
“On the other hand — it’s going to sound like I’m talking out of both sides of my mouth, but I’m not, I believe this — the Bible says evil has to be opposed. Evil has to be stopped,” Warren continued. “The Bible does not say negotiate with evil. It says stop it. Stop evil. Hitler could not be negotiated with. And there are some people you cannot negotiate with.”
Warren argued there are many different kinds of Muslims in the world, and he’s met a sampling, from those “who wanted to cut my throat” to those who feel “like a brother.”
“Al-Qaida no more represents Islam than the Ku Klux Klan represents Christianity,” he contended. “Actually, if you study the background of al-Qaida, they were influenced by the same people who influenced Hitler. It was a lot of secular writers and Nietzsche and nihilists and stuff like that.”
Not the Qur’an, despite Osama’s tendency to quote from it copiously. Heavens, no.
Many of his critics take exception to that inference about Islam and further argue that agreeing to “excesses” in the war on terror and apologizing for the Crusades actually reinforces al-Qaida and other movements that use the claims as pretexts for their global jihad.
“Well, I understand that argument,” Warren said. “I disagree with it, because I’m not about to defend something that wasn’t Christianity. And the Crusades weren’t Christianity. Not as I see it.
Then why apologize?
“I do apologize, because I apologize for anything done in the name of Christ, that Jesus would disavow,” he said. “I think Jesus would have disavowed the Crusades. Because the Crusades were largely about territorial land and not even about a personal relationship with Christ.”
Never mind that the Crusades may, by preventing the total conquest and Islamization of Europe, have kept Rick Warren from becoming a dhimmi. He is well on his way to becoming one anyway.
Critics also argue the Crusades were a defensive response to Islamic jihad, and today Muslims are the aggressors in most of the world’s hot spots. Muslims aren’t apologizing for this, yet the letter to the Islamic leaders essentially puts Christians in the position of taking the blame.
“I’m not interested in what the radicals will do with that statement,” Warren said. “I’m interested in what the far-more majority of moderates will do with it, and say, Hey, maybe we should listen to this guy Rick Warren.”
Yes, I’m sure they’re lining up at Saddleback.