Does Saddleback Really Suck?
I'm generally leery of mega-church icons like Rick Warren at Saddleback church, but I saw something today which actually impresses me greatly (assuming its true):
Saddleback is unique in that 78 percent of the members of our church had no religious background prior to joining the church. It is a church of conversion growth. We've baptized about 14,000 adults in the last eight years. So that means this is not a church that grew at the expense of other churches.That statistic is extremely significant, and definitely commendable. As Reformed folks, I think we sometimes get a bee in our bonnet and assume that if someone's theology is not "as correct as ours," then there's no way God's Spirit could possibly be working there. So we run around taking great pride in our theological accumen, even though we see very little conversion of unbelievers in our own churches.
At the end of the day, it's not our theology that saves us - it's faith in the resurrected Christ. Of course sound theology is vital for growing and maturing in our faith - many of those Saddleback converts will probably end up in other churches down the road. But we need to be very cautious about blasting those who are less "enlightened" than we are, especially when we see real evidence of the Holy Spirit working via conversion.
Just a little call for humility to start the week...
(Hat tip: Adrian Warnock)