Visited the TeamPyro blog a while ago, and if you haven’t yet, go visit now. [Everything there is worth the read after all] But in this case, Phil Johnson sets his case straight just a few days after appearing Iron Sharpens Iron to address the Rick Warren/John Piper issue:
So (in case you hadn’t heard) Rick Warren will headline the list of speakers at next October’s Desiring God Conference.
Of course I think it’s a bad turn of events, and I didn’t find Dr. Piper’s rationale for handing his platform over to Warren satisfying at all. I was surprised when I heard about it, but on second thought, I have to admit that it is consistent with Dr. Piper’s modus operandi. Last year some people were appalled, others delighted, when Doug Wilson spoke at the conference. The year before that, the blogosphere was all abuzz with strong passions for months because Mark Driscoll would be the featured speaker. In 2007, it was John MacArthur, who (let’s face it) is hardly a John Piper clone.
So Piper likes to feature speakers from outside the boundaries of his own circle of close fellowship, and that’s a good thing, within limits. But Piper’s choice of Warren as a keynote speaker proves his idea of where those limits lie is vastly—perhaps fundamentally—different from mine.
Furthermore, as much as I differ from Piper on the question of who deserves his imprimatur, there’s at least an equal measure of difference between what I think is the proper way to respond to Piper and the way some of his most vocal critics have responded. I’m appalled and ashamed at how some on my side of this debate have expressed their disagreement with Dr. Piper.
It seems to me the whole controversy reflects in microcosm why the evangelical and fundamentalist movements of the 20th century have both failed so egregiously.
Let me explain why. Here are some observations about John Piper, Rick Warren, the critics, and the biblical duty of separation—separation both from false teachers (Romans 16:17; 1 Corinthians 16:22; Galatians 1:8-9; 2 John 7-11), and from deliberately, incorrigibly disobedient brethren (2 Thessalonians 3:14-15; 1 Corinthians 5:11).
Read the rest, it’s really good: HT
I still think differently about Secondary Separation though: HT
More sound readables as recommended by Phil Johnson:
1. Chris Anderson’s response from the “My Two Cents” blog:
My two cents? Very quickly…
1. I’m disappointed. I’m surprised, though perhaps I shouldn’t be. Piper has shown in the past that he likes to push the envelope, as when he included Douglas Wilson and Mark Driscoll in the DG conference. The invitation to Warren just reveals how serious he was in comments to Mark Driscoll about how far he’s willing to bend for fellowship:
“Let me tell you how I think and how I decide who I’m going to hang with. As I look across the broad spectrum of Evangelicalism and all the different styles, what concerns me is doctrine. And if Mark Driscoll holds those nine truths firmly in his left hand, then I don’t care what’s in his open hand.”
I guess he means it. But…
2. This is different. Warren is the church marketing guru of our generation. He’s pushed decisionism and Finney-type tactics to new heights, and conservative evangelicals (such as Carl Trueman) have responded with concern, or indignation, or rolled eyes. In fact, he’s done things that are downright ecumenical. So this isn’t just a matter of “style.” He’s confused the “G” in T4G. To use Piper’s analogy, I’m not sure that what Warren does with his “open hand” makes real agreement with what’s in his “left hand” possible, despite what he may say in a doctrinal statement.
Read the whole thing: HT
Chris’ response to John Piper’s Q&A on Rick Warren: HT
2. One that I haven’t listened to yet, but recommend nevertheless, Chris Rosebrough of the “Fighting for the Faith” podcast: HT
• Analysis of John Piper’s Invitation to Rick Warren
• Three Holy Week Sermons