Rick Warren Brings Saddleback to the Land of Oz

“That's the scary part. I didn't know if I should smile, crack up, scream or run.” The Wizard of Oz

thin blue line-nasa image of the day

TheThin Blue Line-courtesy of NASA

So, one of our readers, Ted, said that he knew a couple of pastors who were concerned that TWW only seems to go after conservative churches. Therefore, they are a bit suspicious that we are liberals. As always, I was confused by this label and asked him to define what he meant by liberal. He said that Rick Warren and Tony Campolo seemed to fit the bill. The last time I carefully looked at Warren, he was doing the Purpose Driven Life schtick. 

I have to admit that I read The Purpose Driven Life and thought that some of Warren’s points made sense. So many people drift aimlessly through life, attend a church or a Bible study or two, and kill time until called home into glory. I did not realize that an entire industry was born and once again we had people making money off of by products such as the Purpose Driven Family, the Purpose Driven Church, and the Purpose Driven Car. Soon, the whole notion of Purpose Driven anything made me want to purposefully pound my head against a wall and scream, “Enough already.”  I have not thought much about the goings on at Saddleback for a few years.

I asked Ted if he had any concerns about Warren that he would like us to address. He quickly sent me a link that I found most interesting. It appears that Warren has decided that, he, along with the rest of his church, need to loose a boatload of weight. Sounded like a good idea to this nurse. But, as always, the devil is in the details.

Before I begin, this is a shout out to Ted and his two pastor friends who are a bit concerned about our devotion to orthodox Christian thinking. I expect them to defend our honor after reading the following.

My husband and I are heavily involved in the ministry of Christian Medical and Dental Association. (CMDA). Link  At one of their area conferences, we were impressed by a lecture given by a Christian physician, Rita Hancock, who through her work with obese patients, came up with an effective diet plan which she herself used to lose 75 pounds. It is called the Eden Diet. It uses medical knowledge combined with common sense and some Scripture. Link 

There are about 16,000 excellent doctors affiliated with this organization who happen to be Christians. Many of them are experts in their fields.This organization is often called to testify before Congress on ethical issues regarding stem cell research, euthanasia, etc.

So did Warren turn to one of these Christian experts to advise his church? Nope. It appears he wanted to go the way of the rich and famous and turned to a TV personality, the famous Dr Mehmert Oz, to introduce the Daniel Diet.

This diet is based on: "Daniel 10:3 ESV : I ate no delicacies, no meat or wine entered my mouth, nor did I anoint myself at all, for the full three weeks. and Daniel 1:8-14 ESV: But Daniel resolved that he would not defile himself with the king's food, or with the wine that he drank. Therefore he asked the chief of the eunuchs to allow him not to defile himself. And God gave Daniel favor and compassion in the sight of the chief of the eunuchs, and the chief of the eunuchs said to Daniel, “I fear my lord the king, who assigned your food and your drink; for why should he see that you were in worse condition than the youths who are of your own age? So you would endanger my head with the king.” Then Daniel said to the steward whom the chief of the eunuchs had assigned over Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, “Test your servants for ten days; let us be given vegetables to eat and water to drink"

Here is a link that lists the foods allowed on the Daniel diet. 

Oh, you say, “I didn’t know Dr Oz was s Christian?” Well, he’s not. So, here’s the skinny. (I couldn’t resist).

According to the Orange Country register here

“The effort is part of Saddleback's Decade of Destiny – a 10-year plan to expand the ministry. The plan includes an element of personal growth meant to equip parishioners to succeed in seven areas: spiritual, physical, financial, relational, vocational, emotional, and mental.

"The Bible says that God wants us to be as healthy physically as you are spiritually," Warren said in a video announcing Saturday's event. "If you don't, you won't have the 'zip-a-dee-doo-dah' to do the rest. The plan will help you feel better, have more energy, get in shape and use your body the way God wants you to. We will be held accountable on how we were stewards of the body he gave us."

We pause for a short station break.

Zip-A-Dee- Doo-Dah

This article goes on to identify all of the chief players. “Dr. Mehmet Oz, a cardiac surgeon and TV show host, Dr. Mark Hyman, an expert in metabolism, and Dr. Daniel Amen, a bestselling author and clinical professor of psychiatry at UC Irvine, will help Warren kick off "The Daniel Plan" – based on Daniel 1, in which the prophet Daniel opts for vegetables and water”

Who are these gentlemen who will be advising Warren and his followers?

Dr Oz:

According to Christian News Wire here

"Besides being a television personality, “Dr. Mehmert Oz is a follower of Emmanuel Swedenborg according to The New Church website. He has appeared on the Oprah Winfrey Show and is Professor of Cardiac Surgery at Columbia University.

He is inspired by Emmanuel Swedenborg, a cult leader who died in 1772 in Sweden. Swedenborgianism has up to 50,000 members worldwide according to the Christian Apologetics and Research Ministry website. They deny the atonement, the trinity, and the deity of the Holy Spirit. They believe all religions lead to God and that Christianity must go through a rebirth. Also, they do not believe in a personal devil. They believe the Bible is not inspired and that when people die, they become an angel or an evil spirit.
Emmanuel Swedenborg had a vision in 1745 where he supposedly saw creatures crawling on the walls. He believed God then appeared to him as a man and told him that he would be the person to promote the new teachings to the world.”


Dr. Amen:

Christian News reports that Dr. Amen teaches “tantric sex, a Hindu mystical approach to sex, and Eastern religion meditation. Dr. Amen has been an advocate of “Sa Ta Na Ma” meditation. He is the founder of Amen Clinics, is the author of over 25 books. He teaches techniques that will improve “brain health,” claiming that poor brain health is associated with a host of problems from overeating to depression.”

According to one source :

“Dr. Amen’s meditation technique of choice is Kriya Kirtan, as we stated above. This is a form of kundalini yoga (see his book,The Brain in Love, p. 146). Those who have studied with discernment the New Age, know that kundalini (or serpent power) is the spiritual “energy” behind meditation. Ray Yungen explains the relationship between kundalini and the chakras:

The chakras act as conduits or conductors for what is called kundalini or serpent energy. They say this force lies coiled but dormant at the base of the spine like a snake. When awakened during meditation, it is supposed to travel up the spine activating each chakra as it surges upward. When the kundalini force hits the crown chakra, the person experiences enlightenment or Self-realization. This mystical current results in the person knowing himself to be God. That is why kundalini is sometimes referred to as the divine energy.”

Addendum 10/1/11 According to Wikipedia here , his studies on the brain lack the typical scientific back-up commonly expected. He has been the subject of QuackWatch.


Dr Hyman:

According to Christian News, Dr. Mark Hyman “promotes mystical meditation based on Buddhist principles.”
 According to another source:
“He is the founder and medical director of the Ultra Wellness Center, he advises Dr. Oz’s health core group, and he’s a nominee to President Obama’s advisory group on prevention, health promotion, and integrative and public health.”

He also says here “The way we think about disease really is passé. In fact, recently at a conference…the CEO of a drug company said that in the future there will be no more drugs for blockbuster diseases, only drugs for blockbuster mechanisms. And the reason for this is that disease doesn’t exist…. Diseases all appear real but they are simply the downstream effects from upstream mechanisms and causes….

There is no depression
There is no bipolar disease
There is no autism
There is no ADHD
There is no dementia." 


He also pushes his own very expensive vitamin supplements.


The Introductory Meeting at Saddleback:

Here is a partial report of one attendee to the introduction of this program at Saddleback which took place in January 2011. 

  • “To begin, I’d like to state that Saturday Jan. 15th, 2011 will go down in the history books as the day Saddleback Church was sold a bill of goods.”
  • “They used tactics to tug at the heart strings such as videos of sick little girls who suddenly got well from being on “the program” and have been “set free” from relying on medications. Then they flooded the audience with “facts” and “statistics” to scare any grandmother, such as “a tsunami of disease is hitting us,” “life expectancy is going down,” “1 out of 2 people are diabetic or pre-diabetic,” “70% of all agricultural land is taken up by growing animals to feed all the people,” “the bigger your body gets, the more your brain shrinks,” etc.
  • “The audience was told they would be champions in health to show the world what “living sustainably” was all about,”
  • “Dr. Amen, made reference to the Egyptian pyramids and how they were built upon an “idea,” and if man could build something like that all those thousands of years ago, what could he do today if he put his mind to it?”
  • “Dr. Hyman said that he is a Jew, Dr. Amen said he is a Christian, and Dr. Oz said he is a Muslim. And doesn’t that represent the demographic of “most of the population of the world”? But then he said, “we’re all the same underneath.”
  • “The tragic thing about this day at Saddleback is, Jesus was never mentioned … and I mean NEVER. There were a few passing references to God; Daniel Amen mentioned that our bodies were “a temple of the Holy Spirit and the brain is the inner sanctum” [Amen means that all humans are the temple of the Holy Spirit], but Jesus never made the cut – ”sustainable lifestyles” and “group living” did.”
  • “Dr. Amen mention in his presentation that he did a brain scan on one of his clients who had a habit of cheating on his wife. The brain scan showed that there were “holes in the pre-frontal cortex of his brain” which controls the impulses. In other words, this man wasn’t sinful, he was “mentally ill.” All he needed was to get on the “Change Your Brain, Change Your Body” program, and his personal struggles with sin.”

Here are my concerns:

  • This program is being promoted, from the pulpit, as a comprehensive health program for the members of the church. Why would Warren not seek the advice of qualified Christian professionals?
  • If Warren is giving these professionals access to his pulpit and his congregation, what is he doing to insure that orthodox Christian teaching is not abandoned in favor of other religious or secular practices?
  • Has Warren seriously pursued the rather dubious claims of these doctors? Where is the proof that “holes in the brain caused a man to have affairs?”
  • Is Warren ensuring that truth be taught or is he merely pursuing the next new alternative health fad?

Finally, this whole program has raised many questions for me about Rick Warren and the emphasis of his ministry. I plan to do more reading on the subject and hope to get back to our readers with a follow-up.

Addendum 10/1/11: Tom Rich, at the well-received FBC Jax Watchdog posted the following comment which I believe will be of interest to our readers.

"This focus on physical health at Saddleback was the first part of Warren’s 7-module “Decade of Destiny”.

Thursday, and again this morning, I’ve posted on the second part of Warren’s “Decade of Destiny”, which is financial health that he unveiling this month.

Last Sunday Warren brought in Robert Morris, and told his congregation that he is an “expert” and “one of the top authorities” in financial planning in America. What did Morris teach the peeps at Saddleback? That the key to financial security and prosperity is to fork over 10% of your income to your church, which is a “good business deal” because you are purchasing God’s protection for your finances. Also, Morris says when you bring the full 10% to church, Jesus is there and he receives it from you, and Jesus himself bless it, thereby empowering the rest of your money to be blessed to multiply. It is just a repackaged form of health and wealth, name it and claim it theology."

Read about it here and here

And, to bring you back to Oz land, we leave you to contemplate the following.


With a nod to Dr. Oz, I leave you with the following video,

Lydia's Corner:  1 Chronicles 16:37-18:17    Romans 2:1-24    Psalm 10:16-18    Proverbs 19:8-9


Rick Warren Brings Saddleback to the Land of Oz — 50 Comments

  1. Didn’t realize Dr. Amen had some of these ideas. I have used his video in counseling to help clients to realize what various drugs do to the brain. Not much on the philosophical implications towards humanism that tends to comes through in his conclusions at times but he does note how bad choices in eating and ADL’s lead to brain results.

  2. So “sweeteners” are bad but all fruit is fair game? This doesn’t fit with Daniel 10:2-3 at all, which is probably better handled as “no TASTY thing entered my mouth.” It’s not necessarily referring to sugary foods or junk food or things Americans should “probably” be eating less of. Some commentators suspect that even in 10:2-3 Daniel may be describing this because it wasn’t like usual fasts, perhaps because Daniel at that age and physical condition may not have been able to handle a more rigorous approach to fasting as mourning.

    Well, this obviously wouldn’t be the first time someone decided to shill a fad diet claiming to use a “Bible diet” to make you whole.

  3. Dee – great minds think alike. I was just posting Thursday and today about Rick Warren.

    This focus on physical health at Saddleback was the first part of Warren’s 7-module “Decade of Destiny”.

    Thursday, and again this morning, I’ve posted on the second part of Warren’s “Decade of Destiny”, which is financial health that he unveiling this month.

    Last Sunday Warren brought in Robert Morris, and told his congregation that he is an “expert” and “one of the top authorities” in financial planning in America. What did Morris teach the peeps at Saddleback? That the key to financial security and prosperity is to fork over 10% of your income to your church, which is a “good business deal” because you are purchasing God’s protection for your finances. Also, Morris says when you bring the full 10% to church, Jesus is there and he receives it from you, and Jesus himself bless it, thereby empowering the rest of your money to be blessed to multiply. It is just a repackaged form of health and wealth, name it and claim it theology.

    Read about it here:


    and here:


  4. Casey

    I am not saying that every little thing that each of these doctors endorse is wrong. I am getting at the the overall wisdom of choosing a group of doctors who appear to be making bank on there comprehensive view of life that seems at direct odds with orthodox Christian thinking.

  5. I’m not sure I’d place Rick Warren and Tony Campolo in the same “liberal” category.

    Rick Warren is a pastor of a Southern Baptist Church.

    Tony Campolo is currently an associate pastor of a National Baptist Church but has his roots in the more liberal American Baptist.

    Finally; the quite liberal website progressive-dot-org LIKES Tony Campolo and DISLIKES Rick
    http://www.progressive.org/node/124907 – Rick Warren

    http://www.progressive.org/print/2281 – Tony Campolo

  6. Tom
    I’m in Alabama. Will add ur links as an addendum when I get back to hotel. This happens between our sites even though we don’t talk. I wonder if there is a bit of Spirit prompting going on? Love ur site, always!

  7. Seneca, both Tony Campolo and Rick Warren have similar goals. Today’s busy for me, but when I get a breather, I’ll fill in some blanks on that.

    Excellent writeup, Dee! Your research is impeccable.

    What’s important here is not so much whether their dietary advice is sound or not, but why are they inviting non-Christians adhering to practices as bizarre as tantric sex into the fold? Where is this headed?

    There is way more here than meets the eye and it runs deep.

  8. Why not push the “Ezekiel Diet”? More simple. Just Ezekiel bread and measured out water. Only debates might be over whether it has to be cooked over human dung rather than cow dung in order to be more healthy.
    Poor Paul slipped up in his health advice to Timothy by suggesting a little wine, apparently.

  9. Guy behind the curtain,

    Tried to comment, but got booted under the claim that I used a certain word banned from the blog. I assure you, no such word exists in the text of my comment.

  10. Ted

    I am waiting……Are you ready to defend my honor yet? Also, check out my addendum. Amen is the subject now of Quackwatch,

  11. Obviously I’m pretty danged liberal, because I’ve always thought of Rick Warren as conservative. And I’m immediately suspicious of any mega-church pastor.

    I’ll admit, as one of those evil “liberal” Christians, I was encouraged by parts of Warren’s latest schtick:

    1. He’s focusing on gluttony versus gay-ness. If the church HAS to point out sins, this seems more important… lots more people are overweight, lots more (but not all, I’m convinced) can do things to fix that, and it really does have more of an affect on society as a whole than homosexuality does, in terms of lost wages due to illness, higher insurance costs, etc.

    2. He’s NOT making sure everything is Christo-politically correct by going through the correct Christian or Focus on the Family-approved organizations for something like diet and health. Ridiculous to think we have to only “go to our own,” like a college fraternity, for information and advice on non-theological subjects. Makes us no better than the fundamentalists.

    3. The doctors in question describe themselves as a Jew, a Christian, and a Muslim, yet Christian News Wire paints them as decidedly (I suppose) more sinister. Sounds witch hunt-like to me… (then again, I’ve taken a non-Christian, secular yoga class, so maybe I’m already headed to eternal you-know-where…)

    So my Liberalness doesn’t have a problem at all with the experts or the concept; it’s the mega-church Saddleback shiny media package that gets me every time.

    Be a motivational organization if you want, just don’t attach it to the church. Don’t guilt people into losing weight for God (with our handy dandy program, $39.95 for a limited time…). Don’t further separate the church into the healthy (God-favored) and unhealthy (obviously lots of sin in their lives). If this is so Spirit-led and important, GIVE it away, make it available to the masses, free as salvation, right?

    But whatever. Ka-ching again, Rick Warren.

  12. Ka-ching exactly.

    I remember the Hallelujah Diet being all the rage in my former locale about ten years ago. This diet also claimed to be God’s Holy Way to Eat. The cornerstone of that seriously vegetarian diet was a special wheat grass drink available exclusively from the good doctor and the Japanese company that gave him his honorary doctorate.


    On a side note, poor Tony Campolo. It’s not enough to love Jesus anymore, you have to be politically conservative. I guess they left that part out of the Bible. Oh well, Final, don’t despair of being in eternal you-know-where alone. Tony tells a great story, and I have been known as a decent conversationalist in some circles. 😉

  13. Muff and anyone else getting a comment blocked.

    Send the comment to geeks@thewartburgwatch.com so I can figure out what might be the issue.

    But note that to date when people have followed up with this it has turned out to be an issue with ad blocking plug ins on the commenter’s computer. So if you do have an ad blocking plug in you might want to try again with the plug in disabled.

    Who’s also two states from home this weekend.

  14. It will be interesting to see how things develop from here regarding Rick Warren’s relationship with John Piper and others. The hardcore Calvinistas never seemed to like him, but after John Piper’s inquisiti… er… interview of Warren, I wondered if they’d soften up a bit.

    Now, chances are that if they did begin to accept him, their feelings will quickly revert (though who knows? Mark Driscoll hates yoga, but tantric not-sure-if-that-word-is-banned might just be right up his alley…). For my part, I’m quite curious what John Piper may say – or not say – after this.

  15. What happened to the good ol’ days when the gospel was preached and people were left to make their own decisions about how they were going to live?

    The reason why Daniel went on that diet was not to defile himself with foods that were not prepared and served according to Jewish law.

    The whole thing sounds whacked to me!

  16. Josh

    If this blog is going to write about Driscoll, there are many words that can never be banned. Actually, we only ban direct name calling. We do let some ribald language fly as well if the situation warrants it. Just so you know, we have only banned a handful of comments since this blog started, only two or three for language. I had a good laugh about Driscoll and tantric sex. I bet he is already investigating the situation.

  17. Shato
    I visited a blog that pushes the Levitical diet. There was no consideration taken of the fact that pork is raised differently these days . It was just palin bad. It was as if God never told Peter that these dietary restriction were no longer necessary to the faith.

    Here are the two dietary rules I can see in the New Testament. Gluttony is a no no and a little wine is good for the stomach. Funny thing about gluttony however. It seems to be the sin that is accepted with a big smile so long as the person presents it with a big homemade cake.

  18. Shadowpring

    I forgot about the Hallelujah diet. I remember people swearing by the wheat grass drink. Seems like God has endorsed a wide variety of diets that make money for their promoters. I hate it when people use their church connections to push things to make money. I have steadfastly refused all efforts to get me involved with certain “sure bets” because I never want people to think that I am befriending them in order to part them from their money.

  19. Both Jan Markell and Caryl Matrisciana have been hammering Warren on this since he started it earlier this year. I know Jan had Caryl on her radio show and discussed the whole thing. You might be able to find the show in the Archives section of Jan’s web page.

  20. Here is the odd thing about this trend in the Daniel Diet anyway. I have heard about this diet for years and it is very quirky trend that is being promoted. Three principles that most likely Daniel followed was one by Solomon in which a proverb of his was to beware of the “delicacies of kings,” The second was unclean meats (higher levels of bacteria like pork). The third was meat in Babylon was most likely devoted to idols. It is really not a diet that is necessary. We forget that Paul writes to Timothy on foods that should be acceptable and sanctified by prayer and thanksgiving.

  21. Hey, I thought Rick Warren was going to get the Middle East problem solved. What happened? Now we’re on to diets and such.

    Is this a not so veiled attempt to get Oprah’s old spot on morning TV?

    I will give Warren cudos on getting the Gospel right. That’s the main thing a pastor should get right and focus on. All of this other stuff can be distracting and end up hurting the congregation.

  22. I find Tony Campolo extremely BORING. He is also really gaffe prone and usually uniformed.

    Can you NOT do a post on him.

  23. I suggest that Rob Bell become a frequent topic of your posts. I would not have said that a month ago.

    But now he has quit his church and I heard he has a gig on ABC. Is that right? I actually jokingly predicted he’d be on CNN the day I found out he quit his church.

    My nephew, who is a freshman at college, blind from birth and a voracious reader, said this to me yesterday: “Neither Rob Bell nor Joshua Harris have said or written anything that hasn’t already been said or written much better by someone else.”

    Rob Bell may become this generation’s Bill Moyers. He will trade on this theological and church training, but will slowly depart from it over the years (never quite admitting it, however). And all the while he will do his best to undermine orthodox Christian faith. Bell will be lionized in the secular media, starting now and continuing for the next 20 to 30 years.

    I hope this is not true, but it seems so predictable.

    Bell would be an interesting guy for you guys to watch and follow.

  24. “Neither Rob Bell nor Joshua Harris have said or written anything that hasn’t already been said or written much better by someone else.”

    Agreed. I’ve only read one of Rob Bell’s books (Love Wins) and it was basically a popular-level intro to what C. S. Lewis, N. T. Wright, and a number of authors have already written. Whether or not you agree with what Bell wrote, he didn’t saying anything new. Josh Harris is basically Gothard for a new generation. Again, nothing new in what he’s written. The only thing Harris and Bell have done is to repackage it differently.

  25. Amanda:

    I will brag on my nephew at this point.

    N.T. Wright’s systematic theology came out earlier this year. It’s about 1000 pages. My nephew has already devoured it.

    One thing he says about Wright is that Wright is orthodox, but he is finding that many people in the U.S. who are not orthodox quote Wright a lot.

    I have never read Bell or Harris. I am going to take my nephew’s and your word for it!

  26. Casey
    Thanks for this comment. i think I may try to do a review of fad “Bible” diets and point out the theological faalacies.

  27. shadowspring

    Do you know how many times i do this? It probably stems from a 3 decade desire to see a woman in the White House.

  28. Anonymous

    Warren seems to jump from large idea to large idea. Maybe he ought to cone down and focus on some essentials and build up, instead of the top down.

  29. Anonymous

    It was Rob Bell’s resignation which spurred me on to sign up for a twitter account. I want to use it to inform readers when something fascinating is occurring. Bell is certainly an interesting duck and I intend to follow his trajectory. I am still trying to get the low down on the reason for the resignation. I think there may be more to this story than meets the eye.

  30. Amanda, Anonymous

    I, too, like NT Wright. I think I will get his systematic theology book. I have taught through the entire Wayne grudem book because there wasn’t much else out there. I disagree with Grudem on secondary issues, especially how he has expressed them in the more recent time frame.

    I like Wright and find him to be an original thinker as well as a scholar. Kudos to your nephew, Anonymous.

  31. Dee:

    I suspect you are right. There is more going on with Bell’s resignation.

    I suspect that he is having somewhat of a crisis of faith with respect to orthodox Christian doctrine, and the hell thing may be the first visible crack in that.

    I also suspect that at this point Bell may not even be capable of articulating all that is going on. But’s its clear that he and the leaders of his church are not seeing eye to eye, and that Bell really is finding that he has another love.

    People grow in life. Bell is relatively young. He may simply be growing out of the pastorate (so to speak) and finding that he has some other interests. Beginning to doubt the truth of scripture often goes along with this.

    I suspect that people teaching in seminaries and religion departments who start out orthodox and end up far from the faith may go through the same thing. It’s just that their career choices are more limited than Bell’s, so they don’t have the ability to do anything but teach on the college or grad school level.

    Bell’s book was probably a catalyst for all this. It brought some things to a head that might never have been spoken.

    How about that for some armchair psychoanalysis!

  32. Anonymous
    You impress me as the type of person who is probably adept at armchair psychology. There are people who are just plain good at reading others. I would not venture to play a game of poker with you.

  33. When I was a professor, the Psych department had a long-standing monthly poker game the Friday evening after payday. The best players were the experimentalists, followed by the social psychologists, and last, the clinical psychologists — the guys who actually saw patients and taught others how to do that as well. The worst poker player, whom we eventually barred from the game because he lost too much too much of the time, was the head of the clinical psych program! So much for psychology and poker.

  34. Anonymous and Dee:

    I’ve only read a couple of N. T. Wright’s books, but I like what I’ve read. I wasn’t aware that he had written a systematic theology. I’ll have to check that out some time.

  35. He’s probably only had time to write a systematic theology since he resigned as Bishop of Durham to focus on completing his New Testament and the People of God series. He was very up front about that being the reason. Jesus & the Victory of God was one of those life-changing books for me, no exaggeration. I don’t agree with Wright on a few things and I think that his contributions to discussing Paul don’t preclude having some old school views on justification but I also believe that Piper and company have over-reacted to what they believe are Wright’s supposedly dangerous subversions of double imputation and other doctrines that are so rarified and academic the average lay person never hears about them. I’m also ever so slightly to the right of Wright on some political issues but that doesn’t stop me from appreciating his scholarly work. 🙂

  36. I need to get my nephew to come on this blog and discuss Wright with you guys. I haven’t read any of his work.

    As for poker, I am TERRIBLE! I am too predictable. But thanks for the compliment.

    I actually think that you should write about what interests you. That’s what makes for the best writing.

    And I think that given your background and interests, that you probably should stick with many of the topics you have chosen.

    Still, I think that if Bell takes off in the direction he is headed, he will be worth watching. If he does have a gig on ABC, his potential influence over others, and either being faithful to Jesus or not, could be very significant.

  37. Guy behind the curtain,

    Always be leery of “new and improved” software. It rarely is improved, more often than not, all they’ve done is make it complicated-er & complicated-er, with more back-doors, side-doors & screen doors……while I’m on a roll…..

    It would seem that software engineering has abandoned the time tested KISS (keep it simple stupid) rule in any engineering discipline. The grand irony here? They actually think they’re smart. End of rant.

  38. GuyBehindtheCurtain,

    It’s just a comment about software in general these days. More specifically, if you folks have “upgraded” your spam filter, that’s probably why my comment won’t appear. I’ve searched high and low in the text of my comment for the remotest link that would trigger expulsion based on the offending word, all to no avail. Oh well as they say.

  39. Muff

    Just so you know. Software updates are a fact of my life daily in my real work to put food on the table job. And I really dislike the flood of them these days. Especially in dealing with businesses who want the updates but also want everything to keep working without any changes. Hmmm. 🙁

    Around here without our SPAM filters we get between 20 and 40 comments a day trying to get people to click a link so they can buy some neat thing. Prescriptions from Canada. Hair removal cream from Poland. And shall we say, more interesting things from various places around the globe.

    There are several, well many, SPAM filters available for blogs on Word Press. We are currently using one that is free and does a reasonable job. But to keep up with the SPAMers who circumvent these tools they all get rev’d fairly frequently. I try and let them simmer for a day or two before installing but that doesn’t always work. 3 revs back they made a mistake and for many blogs all comments were being flagged as SPAM. They fixed it a day or so later.

    But your problem is with the “fixed” version. And it is a problem we’ve seen before.

    I have two requests. And without you doing either of these there is not much I can do to fix the situation.

    First please disable any ad blocking plug ins you are using and let us know if this resolves the issue.

    Second, email the comment to . If you do this we can post it for you if you want and ALSO try and figure out what the issue is.

    To date no one we’ve asked has done either of these things. So we still are not sure what the issue might be as we have no data with which we can test.

    Now back to the discussion about Rick Warren.

  40. Written by Muff Potter and posted by Dee

    I live in Southern California not far from the fabled OC and Warren’s
    mega-church. The folks that go there are mostly well heeled and politically conservative. Ronald Reagan, Maggie Thatcher, and Milton Friedman are their patron saints. So from that standpoint, the concern over liberalism at Saddleback expressed by Ted & others just ain’t there.

    I’m still not seeing how trendy weight-loss programs and physical health
    fads comport with liberalism. It’s one thing to promote a fad, but quite
    another to sign on to the personal religious beliefs of the fad originators.

    As always Dee, I love the wiggle room you give in the bullet points at
    the end of your article! Btw, I couldn’t help but chuckle at Dr. Amen’s
    “holes in pre-frontal cortex” thing. It reminded me of National Socialist propaganda (1930’s Berlin) on the differences between Aryan & non-Aryan skulls.

  41. Dee, you wrote:

    “…Do you know how many times i do this? It probably stems from a 3 decade desire to see a woman in the White House…”

    I share the same sentiment. I believe that Elizabeth Warren can beat the former Playgirl centerfold (senate race), and that if she doesn’t sell her soul to the big boyz and takes her case to the American people, she can win the oval office one day. Easier said than done of course.