Home > abuse of spiritual authority, bullying from the pulpit, Contending for the Faith, cyberbullying > TESTIMONY OF ABUSE BY PURPOSE-DRIVEN PREDATOR PASTOR

TESTIMONY OF ABUSE BY PURPOSE-DRIVEN PREDATOR PASTOR

December 5th, 2011 Leave a comment Go to comments

In light of the scandal at Penn State, we see that silence is not golden!
A victim of abuse by a pastor in Utah at a Purpose-Driven Church has now come forward after several years of silence.  We hope and pray that this will be a wake-up call to other PDC victims and bring the Balm of Gilead to a host of other victims who have been assaulted, mocked, and their churches destroyed!

TESTIMONY OF ABUSE BY PURPOSE-DRIVEN
PREDATOR PASTOR TOM MERTZ,
THE SPRINGS CHURCH, ST. GEORGE, UTAH

“In 2005, we were attending Desert Springs Baptist Church in St.
George, Utah. (It’s now called “The Springs Church”) It was a
new work in St. George and was supported by the Open Door
Baptist Mission Board at the time.

Tom Mertz was the senior pastor and my husband was ordained
and became the associate pastor.

It was in the year 2005, that Tom Mertz went to Saddleback
Church for training on church growth. He came back and
immediately made an announcement that everything was
changing. He brought a coffin into the service and announced that
the “Old Tom is dead” and the “New Tom is alive”. I thought than
when we become born-again that we are “new creatures in Christ?”
(2 Cor. 5:17)

The church would now be Purpose Driven.
Just before Tom ordained my husband and went to Saddleback, he
approached Ronny and asked him what he would do if “we
disagree” and can’t agree on an issue? This question was very
vague. He asked my husband that if that occurred would he leave
the church. My husband told him that he would leave.
Well, things went from bad to worse. My husband could no longer
teach the adult Sunday school class. So eventually, we left. There
were many people leaving also (about 50%). My best friend, Sue,
was told she wasn’t welcome in the church because Tom didn’t
approve of her home Bible study. This Bible study was made up of
mostly her neighbors and not very many church members at the
time.

 

My husband and I decided to write a letter to the Mission Board
because Tom was now teaching this “Purpose Driven” doctrine and
not the doctrine that the Mission Board believed he was teaching.
I also included clippings out of our local newspaper, which showed
the advertising that Tom was doing and in one of the ads it clearly
stated that the church was Purpose Driven.

 

Tom was always looking over his shoulder because he was afraid
that someone from the Mission Board would show up
unannounced to check on the church. WE DID NOT DO THIS
OUT OF SPITE—BUT FELT WE NEEDED TO LET THE
MISSION BOARD KNOW WHAT HAD HAPPENED. IT’S
ABOUT TRUTH AND INTEGRITY.

 

Two other couples also wrote to the mission board. The mission
board responded with a very simple message—basically, thank
you. They stated that they would check it out and it appeared in the
letters that everyone received that they possibly didn’t believe what
we were saying. However, we found out later that they did
investigate and they pulled all the financial support from Tom
Mertz.

 

When Tom’s financial support was stopped, he then became
violent and very foul mouthed. Tom would call our home and
leave cursing messages on our answering machine, day after day
for at least a month. Cursing, screaming and calling my husband
very foul names. We answered the phone at first, but later refused
to listen to him rant and rave so the answering machine picked up
the calls.

 

Within the last 6 months, there has been a very interesting
development. Oasis Community Church closed their doors due to
lack of money and attendance. Some of the members went to “The
Springs” Church even after knowing what had happened to us.
When they approached Tom Mertz about being Purpose Driven he
flatly denied it. So they all stayed.

 

In one of our free newspapers, The Senior Sampler, Tom is still
advertising the church as Purpose Driven. He is now saying that
he is one of three “Springs Churches–South Mountain
Campuses) and they are in no way Purpose Driven. The other two
churches are up north by Salt Lake City. From South Mountain’s
website it is clear they are very much Purpose Driven.
My husband didn’t want me telling you this story at first. But later
said, okay. It’s been 6 years now since all this happened.
We were un-churched for a while, but now we are attending a local
Church, which seems okay for now.

 

I say for now, because you never know when things will change
and another church is taken over by the Warren doctrine.
Thank you for listening. We hope this letter will help others who
have experienced the Purpose Driven agenda.
God bless your ministry,
Sandra Van Asch”

 

SPIRITUAL EUTHANASIA
A PARABLE OF THE PURPOSE DRIVEN CHURCH
PURPOSE DRIVEN CHRISTIANITY….A WAY THAT
SEEMS RIGHT UNTO MAN, OR WHO’S END IS
DESTRUCTION?
“First they came for “resisters” and “pillars” of Brunswick
Reformed Church, Brunswick, Ohio because they opposed Purpose
Driven Life and Church, but I didn’t speak up because I was not a
member of Reformed Church of American (RCA) denomination.

Then they came after a lady who was an elder lady in the faith who
had been with the First Baptist Church of Dallas, Texas since 1956
by shouting her down with spiritual euthanasia and aggressive
mean-spirited behavior, and the intimidation of seven attorneys,
because she opposed them turning their landmark Criswell Center
into a Purpose Driven entertainment center. But I did not speak up
because I was not a widow.

Then they held a trial for two families at Valley Baptist Church in
Lakeland, Minnesota, but I didn’t speak up because I was not a
member of the General Baptist Convention.

Then they came after 165 members of Gardendale Baptist Church,
Corpus Christi, Texas and ran them out of the church, but I didn’t
speak up because I wasn’t a Southern Baptist.

Then a brother did finally speak up and tried to warn Eugene
Christian Fellowship because they had gone Purpose Driven, but
they threatened legal action and told him to stop spamming them.
But I did not speak up for fear of being accused of spamming or
being sued by a church.

Then a news reporter for a large Christian radio network sounded
the alarm on His Holy Hill of this clear and present danger. They
ran the story, but received more gnashing of teeth from callers then
they had ever had, so they censored this story from their Agape
Press print media news service.

Then still another brother on another Christian radio ministry
broadcast testimonies of Christians thrown out of their churches
across the country, but the network threatened to remove his show
from the air, if another broadcast was ever made that said anything
bad about Rick Warren. But I did not speak up because I had
friends and family who were either employed by an organization
that promoted Purpose Driven Church, or were in Purpose Driven
Church, and I did not want to lose those relationships.

Then they came after a large group of members at New Hope
Church in Bend, Oregon. But I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a
member of The Evangelical Church denomination or the National
Association of Evangelicals.

Then they came after a carpenter and his wife at Calvary
Community Church in Phoenix, Arizona with the police and a
sheriff and escorted him out of the church and off of the grounds
for trying to expose the deeds of darkness and the teachings of
Rick Warren, telling him that if he returned, he would be arrested.
But I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a member of the Calvary
Chapel denomination.

Then they came for me, and by that time there was no one left to
speak up for me, because every church in the nation had become
Purpose Driven and part of his Global PEACE Plan.”

Compiled and Adapted by James Sundquist
Based on Rev. Martin Neimoeller’s Poem below written in 1945
(c)2005 Rock Salt Publishing Used by Permission

“In Germany, the Nazis first came for the Communists, and I didn’t
speak up because I wasn’t a Communist.

Then they came for the Jews, and I didn’t speak up because I
wasn’t a Jew.

Then they came for the trade unionists, but I didn’t speak up
because I wasn’t a trade unionist.

Then they came for the Catholics, but I didn’t speak up because I
was a Protestant.

Then they came for me, and by that time there was no one left to
speak for me.”

(Rev. Martin Neimoeller, German Lutheran Pastor. Rev.
Neimoeller was arrested by the Gestapo for opposing Hitler and
was sent to Dachau in 1938. He was freed by Allied forces in
1945.)

*****

“Woe unto the world because of offences! for it must needs be that
offences come; but woe to that man by whom the offence
cometh!” Matthew 18:7
&
“For if they do these things in a green tree, what shall be
done in the dry?” Luke 23:31

 

  1. Too Far
    July 24th, 2013 at 10:05 | #1

    Paul Jacobsen :I have finally heard from a person who has left that church who came to the same conclusion that I did about it: that it is a cult. I promised not to share too many details but this person and there spouse were intimidated by leaders and discerned that much of what they are doing is not biblical. But this person speaks of others knowing that the church leaders are acting like cult leaders but are too afraid to speak up or even leave. I will tell them that God will judge them if they continue on in a “church”, which they know is an unbiblical cult. The same truth applies to the Faith Movement. Thousands of churches have become cults right before the coming of the Lord, just as St. Paul prophesied: a militant falling away from the truth of the Gospel…”to seduce if possible, even God’s elect.” Mark 13:22 WAKE UP CHURCH!

    Don’t you think your going a bit too far with that statment? God calls us to respect the people he has put in power as well as call us all to behave biblically. No one is perfect and even if like you state there is an abuse of power. I do not think the people within a church will be judged for the leadership’s actions. I simply do not see that in the bible.

  2. June 20th, 2013 at 03:31 | #2

    I have finally heard from a person who has left that church who came to the same conclusion that I did about it: that it is a cult. I promised not to share too many details but this person and there spouse were intimidated by leaders and discerned that much of what they are doing is not biblical. But this person speaks of others knowing that the church leaders are acting like cult leaders but are too afraid to speak up or even leave. I will tell them that God will judge them if they continue on in a “church”, which they know is an unbiblical cult. The same truth applies to the Faith Movement. Thousands of churches have become cults right before the coming of the Lord, just as St. Paul prophesied: a militant falling away from the truth of the Gospel…”to seduce if possible, even God’s elect.” Mark 13:22 WAKE UP CHURCH!

  3. J. Robinson
    March 30th, 2013 at 12:26 | #3

    Lies about Pastor Tom Merz being an abuser: JAMES, why are you spreading lies about Pastor Tom? Do you have any proof at all? FYI, The Springs is growing and the work of the Lord thrives through its members and the community. Your lies and malice and even the gates of hell will NEVER prevail and thwart the good work of the Lord. Another FYI: The Springs and its members had a fruitful discussion of The Purpose-Driven Life in small groups and we have progressed to many other themes and texts since you left.

    And BTW, you could NOT even provide proof for the alleged ‘cussing’ and ‘phone messages’ that you obviously concocted. Those who know our pastor and his family know better than to believe such lies. But that’s OK, everything will be revealed (i.e., the TRUTH) by the Lord when He comes back. Meanwhile, I feel sorry for you, and I hope God will enlighten you to be less cynical and bitter of churches here in St George. God bless you, brother!!

  4. Concerned
    February 12th, 2013 at 08:30 | #4

    Thanks for the update. Please keep us posted so we can pray.

  5. December 22nd, 2012 at 07:45 | #5

    @Concerned
    Thanks for your concern. By God’s grace alone, I am still alive. This past year and a half have been hellish. After my wife’s purpose driven church condemned me, my wife followed them in doing the same and the divorce is nearing the end. If there are any legal firms that would pursue this based upon personal injury, please contact me [email protected]. They condemned me and humiliated me to my wife and children because I couldn’t work but I have disabilities that they didn’t even want to consider because I was targeted as a “dissenter” early on. This has caused me considerable pain and suffering and the loss of my family. I am searching for a law firm. There must be some Christian lawyer that wants to defeat this kind of gross injustice and perversion of Christianity. There is plenty of evidence of abuse in this movement and in this particular church. I have one email alone from one of the “pastors” that proves just how malicious and maniacal they are. I am not the only one whom they’ve abused and I can source other names. Here is the page on my site that explains my disabilities: http://jesusrapture.com/index.php?p=1_66_PERSONAL-PRAYER-REQUEST

  6. May 16th, 2012 at 15:22 | #6

    @Concerned I never thought that I would ever experience this kind of emotional pain and suffering at the hands of people who obviously believe that they are doing God’s will by helping to destroy me and alienate me from my family. Though one of my daughters has told me that she agrees with me, she is afraid of my wife and the church. She has not returned to the church since she was given the third degree by two “pastors but even she is not close to me anymore because of the divorce. I have lost my family and I often pray that the Lord will take me home because it is unbearable.

  7. Concerned
    May 14th, 2012 at 07:53 | #7

    @Paul Jacobsen
    Any updated on your situation?

  8. Me Too
    April 16th, 2012 at 07:01 | #8

    I have been disappointed and hurt beyond measure but the pastors at the Bridge as well. All I ever wanted was a place to belong and fit in. What I received was mistreatment, false accusations, and abuse of authority. I thought pastors were supposed to care for God’s people. I don’t understand why this abuse of power was allowed to go on.

  9. February 20th, 2012 at 21:04 | #9

    February 20, 2012

    Dear Bridge Community Church Leaders, Elders, Members and Attendees,

    I formally charge Scott Ziegler and Brian Nelson with spiritual and ministerial abuse that has resulted in an unfouned and unbiblical divorce, which my wife is now pursuing with their support or tacit support.

    I was not in agreement with their extremely purpose driven agenda early on and I was brave enough to let elders and the pastor know that from the month we started attending. I became persona non grata at the Bridge, as Ziegler follows the edicts of Rick Warren closely. One of Warren’s edicts is to get rid of “dissenters” (ie: anyone who doesn’t accept everything they say or preach) because “unity” control really, is the most important factor in church according to Warren and Herr Ziegler’s regime. Giving Ziegler the benefit of the doubt that he was a righteous man, I took Ziegler at his word in our “private meeting” that we could “agree to disagree” but it became very obvious to me that complete agreement- submission really, to what he thinks and wants, is how he defines “unity” and Rick Warren’s revised version of “Christian unity” amounts to: if you don’t agree about something at our church, leave or you’ll wish that you had. Ziegler has abused his pastoral authority and so has Brian Nelson, Pastor of Worship and Adult Ministries. I was warned early on by someone still on the inside about them but I chose to give them the benefit of the doubt in Christian love and tolerance, which they certainly did not show me. Their accusations and conflict eventually ensued, which ended in alienation from my wife and I assume that she had their sham blessing to pursue divorce.

    I challenge Scott and Brian to a polygraph test that I will pass but they never could! I can’t believe how ruthless you both are in the name of Christ? These are tyrants not pastors and I have several other examples of ministerial abuse and outright unbiblical behavior on their part. (If someone reads this who knows about more abuse please email me: [email protected]) Scott hides his utter devotion to Rick Warren but do you want someone who is primarily devoted to a mere man and his vain philosophy or is devoted to Jesus? If you talk to anyone there in authority, just know that they share everything with the pastor and others (known as gossip). The newbies who don’t even know the Lord are happy that someone just says hello to them. It is not the vast amount of attendees that I am accusing of wrong doing but most of them don’t seem to care about doctrine unless it comes out of Ziegler’s mouth (just like Warren at Saddleback hmmm!). I do know and care about doctrine and it landed me in the pastors office the third week there, in which he scolded me: “you don’t believe in anything we’ve done here,” which wasn’t true at all at that moment because no one would tell me just how devoted they are to Rick Warren and his perversion of Christianity. Well Scott ended up being closer to being right about how I would end up feeling about how the Bridge operates than I realized then because he has many idols: Growing the church at all costs is NOT a biblical mandate. The limo video was extremely telling as to what their true idol is. ‘Tithing’ is not a New Testament command. The list goes on. Being spiritually “wide not deep” with the youth will not feed anyone spiritually. Brian: eavesdropping on “private” conversations between Scott and ANYONE else in his study and then emailing that person afterwards with all sorts of cruel and immature accusations is called ethical and ministerial misconduct Brian Nelson. Please explain what you did to your elders but they probably won’t care. They have been groomed by Ziegler to accept such mercenary behavior with you and Scott? Do you use the phrase: “the end justifies the means” because it seems to be your motto. You “purposely” purge anyone who is mature in Christ and actually knows Jesus and the Bible or dares to question your leaders.

    Our marriage had problems (that could be solved) and I couldn’t work due to disabilities but they didn’t care about my illnesses at all because they had a different agenda: neutralize or get rid of Paul Jacobsen? We went to Ziegler’s hand-picked “therapist,” Stephen Borgman, who told the pastor practically everything that was said in our “private” sessions as Scott demanded to know. Gee- I wonder why? Don’t any of you see just what a Warrenite control freak Herr Ziegler Is?

    Lately, Brian has been projecting all kinds of guilt and false accusations about one of my daughters because he wants her badly to play at church but she is way too busy at college to play at church right now. How selfish and cruel on your part Brian to put pressure on my daughter like that and your obvious use of psychological warfare, which I also experienced for the purpose of being purged. He didn’t care about her and her welfare and instead appealed to my wife to make her change her mind. Brian, you’re a meglamaniac just like I told your church chairman.

    I have come through a breakdown that would have killed anyone else and I am going to tell the truth about you Bridge “leaders” till Jesus comes or I go home to Him. People like Scott and Brian had depressed me almost to death. Putting people in the pews is NOT God’s command but rather feeding His flock and making disciples is what Jesus commands. Scott’s “pragmatic” preaching is purposely designed to make obedient church members, not disciples.

    What you did to me was cruel and abusive and I can’t even believe that you both “lead” a church. I met very few people there that could truly disciple someone or that even understood what that really means. My wife decided to divorce me primarily because I dared to come against you and I love her and pray that she comes back to me. I am still crushed but I want people to know about you both and of just what you are capable. Nothing will stop me from telling the truth about you and what I experienced at your hands. I am crushed and am still deep in the valley but Jesus has strengthened me- you remember Him right? The love of Christ compels me. I call you all to public repentance before The Bridge Community Church congregation, in Jesus Might Name.

    Paul Jacobsen
    Purpose-Driven victim
    Des Plaines, Illinois

  10. February 18th, 2012 at 15:16 | #10

    PURPOSE-DRIVEN PREDATOR PASTOR SCOTT ZIEGLER, THE BRIDGE CHURCH, DES PLAINES, ILLINOIS
    ABUSES POWER AND HELPS TO SPLIT UP A MARRIAGE

    Dear James,

    I hope you remember me, as you were kind enough to write me. I had a site called spirittruth.com. I took it down due to crisis in our family caused by my family attending a mercenary purpose driven “church.” I was way too direct for the leaders, concerning apostasy in the church. I think that you would be very interested in my short stint there and my scary dealings with leadership that ended up being a nightmare, which isn’t completely over. I was labeled a “dissenter” and “trouble maker early on (by people I had never spoken to! All concerns were brought to elders and pastors (I quickly discerned how deceived and dangerous their “leaders” are) and was character assassinated because I wasn’t in “unity” with the leadership, though they would never tell me exactly how I was not in unity because I definitely am in agreement about biblical essentials. My disagreement with them and their conflict with me is causing my wife to divorce me, which brought me as close to complete breakdown as I could ever come but God is holding me up. I have a story to tell from the inside. That I think you should know about. Their tactics are Machiavellian and even smack of what Stalin first did with dissenters. They definitely idolize growth and authoritarian power that is Antichrist as they supplant Jesus and are using His name to grow their church no matter what they have to do. I never dreamed that this could possibly happen under the guise of being a biblical, evangelical church. Ziegler is one person in public and someone completely different They are assassins to anyone who “threatens” their agenda and definitely represent the ancient evil motto: “the end justifies the means.” This Rick Warren “gospel” is horribly dangerous and I have paid the ultimate price for contending earnestly for the faith- just short of killing me, which right now, I would have preferred as I am now living with a wife whom I love dearly but who is being dreadfully hateful to me. Perhaps that is the kind of person they want…someone who they can manipulate to do their bidding. I never could have imagined that people could be so ruthless i “protecting” their” turf. God is using this to fully crucify my ancient viking desire to confront them. I don’t want revenge but I weep when I think how many are completely deceived by men like this! I have everything to lose by telling the truth but i am compelled by my Lord to do so.

    Paul Jacobsen

    Paul Jacobsen
    Purpose-Driven victim

  11. February 17th, 2012 at 18:26 | #11

    PURPOSE DRIVEN CULT HIT MEN EXPERTS AT CHARACTER ASSASSINATION
11/7/11
    Paul Jacobsen
    Des Plaines, IL

    The passive/aggressive, mercenary tactics of purpose driven “change agents” (leaders, pastors), in the churches where they have launched invasions and hostile church takeovers, reminds me of the old sci-fi movies: ‘Invasion of the Body Snatchers’ and certain aspects of the psycho-thriller: the ‘Stepford Wives.’ Perhaps the best spiritual comparison to these PDC hitmen, are the 17th century, Salem-”Puritan”-Calvinist-witch-hunters, who tortured, then murdered numerous innocent people, in the superstitious, (witchcraft) Catholic Inquisition fixation of John Calvin. Today’s PDC hitmen are a much less lethal, yet stealthy relative, by specializing in character assassination, psychological warfare and autocratic ministerial abuse, all in the name of God! If only what these modern cult adepts were doing was as obvious as those earlier mentioned executions, including that infamous historic tragedy at Salem, people would be fleeing for their spiritual lives, which are in peril when they attend such a stealthy cult, posing as a church! If I hadn’t observed and experienced this insidious kind of persecution first hand, I would not know the depth to which they are capable of descending in their treatment of “dissenters.” In my case, I was openly branded as a “trouble-maker” and increasingly treated as persona-non-grata by ‘Purpose Driven “change agents” and it started with a “meeting” (more like interrogation) by the “lead pastor,” who determined (as if he were the “lord high executioner) that “I didn’t agree with anything they were doing there,” which was not only a lie but was his branding of me as a “dissenter.” He simply had to pass on his “impression” (condemnation) of me to his staff and his close “armor bearers” and they began to marginalize me and be cold and rude to me. One Insider actually tried to intimidate me by repeatedly calling me a “trouble maker.” He didn’t even know me! They increasingly let me know non-verbally that I was persona-non-grata. It got worse as the months went by until they built up a phony “disciplinary” action, which led to confrontation. They demanded absolute control and complete submission and agreement to their allegations, which I could not do (until my wife threatened to divorce me because of it- so I pretended to agree with them temporarily out of panic). The assistant pastor/ worship leader immediately sent off a scurrulous email to me in which he admitted to eavesdropping on my “confidential” conversation with the “lead pastor” along with slanderous allegations that also confirmed his gosipping and conspiring with other people whom I had mentioned to elders as behaving much less than Christian to me and to others. Authentic truth and righteousness is obviously NOT on their priority list and neither is ministerial ethics, which they take license to re-create as they operate on the fly. What these “leaders” will soon find out is that mere bad (but truthful) publicity, can adversely affect their warped “growth” agenda much more than they now realize. I know firsthand that there are many others who have been mistreated by the two “pastors.” The most insidious thing that they’ve done is to divide me and my wife and she is now threatening to divorce me with all cruelty. They are trying to ruin my life because I saw through them immediately and they “marked” me for sanitation or elimination. If you have dealt with this kind of persecution or can offer counsel, please email me at [email protected].
    “I also believe that pastors are the most strategic change agents to deal with the problems society faces.”[1, page 20]  Rick Warren
    A “change agent… should know about the process of change, how it takes place and the attitudes, values and behaviors that usually act as barriers…. He should know who in his system are the ‘defenders’ or resisters of innovations…. Try to identify resisters before they become vocal….”[2, pages ix, 122] Ronald G. Havelock, The Change Agent’s Guide to Innovation in Education.
    “Change leaders must also be prepared to deal with members who choose to ‘stay and fight.’”[3, page 91]  Leading Congregational Change (published by Jossey-Bass)
    I praise God for the privilege of being called to contend earnestly for faith in Jesus and to suffer for it! I made the “mistake” of telling the pastor upfront, the very first month of attendance, (after being called in to see him because I had dared to mention something about “doctrine” to an elder and was immediately identified as being a potential “trouble-maker”) that I disagreed heavily with the PDC agenda, which he retorted: “well you don’t agree with anything that we’ve done here,” which wasn’t true at all and indicated a paranoid rush to judgment upon me, the likes of which completely shook me. When asked at a later date if he had shared those judgments he had made about me with others, he declined to answer and quickly redirected the conversation. My “fate” in that church was set the first month I started going there as it became clear to me that the pastor was hiding his burning devotion to the PDC agenda, even from some of his elders. Needless to say, I began to experience shunning from the pastor’s “inner circle,” which consisted of his family (not his pastor son however, who was always kind) his closest elders, his nasty, mercenary secretary and then, a larger contingent of adepts (as gossip spread). Over the next few months I painfully learned that the purpose driven compromisers who devote themselves fully to that agenda, are something quite different than devout Christians. Though the ‘Purpose Driven Church’ agenda was not even mentioned in their 101 class, it dominates what they do and comes from the head down (the same way a fish rots!). They may know and say most of the proper Christian lingo but at the highest level, they have become dualistic (two-faced) and are using Christianity to further their new, ‘Purpose Driven’ religious obsession. The more sold out to the PDC agenda and culture that they become, the more that they go through spiritual devolution into apostasy and become ‘driven’ to take as many people down that wide road of spiritual compromise as possible, absolutely convinced that they are doing it all for God. They purposely water down the Gospel message so as to appeal to the unsaved and unchurched. Though the pastor is a good public speaker, his messages are rudimentary at best and much more like sterile history lessons. His 3 sermons on (unbiblical) “tithing,” were absolutely appalling and a twisting of the scriptures but right out of the Rick Warren playbook because raising money by compelling the spiritually shallow to sacrifice, is obviously the only way for such a phony movement to “grow.” One young devout Christian studying at Moody had the “audacity” to question their newest spiritual agenda with youth of being “wide not deep,” which meant that they purposely set out not to turn off seekers by delving too deeply into the word and sounding too Christian! She ended up leaving as well after one of the “pastors” betrayed her trust after she questioned their agenda. 

They are ‘driven’ to create an inviting and embracing atmosphere for the new arrivals but in most cases it is mostly superficial treatment, designed to fill seats, which would almost be acceptable if the preaching and teaching was deep, expository, authentic and led by the Spirit but it is not. The preaching is shallow, pragmatic and purpose driven- meant to create obedient followers to the PDC agenda and the leadership, not to create spiritually deep and discerning Christians who might threaten the leadership. Though many of their new church “converts” are sincere seekers or digruntled Catholics (for good reason), many are spiritually lukewarm Laodiceans, who lost their first love for Jesus or they wouldn’t have fallen for such a seductive deception or worse yet, they aren’t born-again Christians but merely ‘cultural Christians’. Purpose drivenites who are Laodicean Christians or complete pretenders, are ripe for being purposely self-deceived by any popular, new movement that promises them personal and organizational “success,” based upon a wiz-bang, worldly business model. The lust to be part of a trendy, “cutting edge” movement, ‘drives’ these adepts, not a deep hunger for Jesus and His righteousness. Having failed at preaching and teaching the deep and genuine Spirit-filled Gospel that transforms lives, they fell for a counterfeit method that creates a happy, positive atmosphere designed to achieve their primary, idolatrous goal of “church growth” -no matter what they must compromise. I am not saying that none of them are saved, (though many are unsaved, ‘cultural christians’- who are just going through the motions and who are merely learning and applying the PC, religiously cultural PDC ‘style’) Laodiceans who had already been ‘spit out’ of the Lord’s mouth and easily fell for a counterfeit program. These adepts readily become devoted to the seductive, cult-like PDC agenda and in following their main change agent, (usually their PDC pastor) they are slowly conditioned to be primarily devoted to their church and their pastor (Jesus becomes a secondary means to an end for them, which is ‘church growth,’ though Jesus is given lip-service). They deftly learn to identify all resisters of the PDC agenda who might be among them, who are usually much more honest and innocent than the stealthy, duplicitous, cunning wolves who make good PDC leaders. They often begin to act more like quasi gang leaders, set on punishing, re-programming or eliminating all critics and resisters, which is what many have rightly identified as “soft tyranny,” even fascism in these churches.
    The pastor and his smarmy, condescending, rock-star-wannabe worship leader, strive to create excitement by over-amplifying the drums and bass to the point where the vocals cannot even be understood. The ego-maniacal, (literally told me that he can “do whatever he wants”) licentious worship leader often spends entire rehearsals focusing upon almost every measure of music that the drummer plays, as if the drums were the most important aspect of worship? Ugh!!! Music there is primarily designed to whip up false, emotional excitement through the loud pounding beat, not through genuine devotion to and praise for Jesus.
    PDC resisters everywhere, experience all sorts of subtle, ungodly treatment, even including psychological warfare (a type of witchcraft) while suffering through spiritual and character assassination.  PDC adepts believe that they are serving God when they identify, malign, shun and even demonize PDC resisters in their midst. The article,  ‘Dealing with Resisters,’ documents and confirms some of the ruthless tactics that most rational, decent people would find incredibly offensive and antichristian but after becoming religiously blinded and self-brainwashed, PDC autocrats refuse to think that they are doing something terribly ungodly and unbiblical, let alone inhuman. After all, their pastor has encouraged them to do it! They are merely following his cues. They become blind to the fact that they are acting cult-like, more like stepford wives and NOT AT ALL like real Christians.
    The article below is an extremely insightful and spiritually discerning expose that focuses upon the glaring omissions of the unbiblical, mercenary, even cult-like tactics used by many ‘purpose driven’ church regimes, for the purpose of asserting complete control over unsuspecting congregations. Since many congregations have not fully implemented every aspect of the complete PDC manifesto, they especially need to heed these words and resist any and all unbiblical “changes” that the ‘purpose drivenites’ strive to impose. They are driven by a lust for growing the church and adding vast numbers and that “end” justifies whatever tactics they need to deploy against resisters.

    Wall Street Journal on Purpose Driven Resisters Tells Just Part of the Story
    Editors – Lighthouse Trails Publishing (One of the very best ministries reporting on the PDC movement)
    Lighthouse Trails Research Project
    web: http://www.lighthousetrailsresearch.com
    Please feel free to distribute this special report.

    Tuesday’s Wall Street Journal article, “Veneration Gap – A Popular Strategy For Church Growth Splits Congregants,” written by WSJ reporter Suzanne Sataline, was based on interviews that Ms. Sataline had with many people, including an editor at Lighthouse Trails and several of the researchers we know. The interviews extended over many weeks and equaled hours worth of discussion. Ms. Sataline also interviewed former members of churches that had become Purpose Driven, and for that reason those members were no longer at those churches.
    While Ms. Sataline’s effort to tell the story of how so many churches are in disarray because of the Purpose Driven movement is commendable, the article is lacking in that it left out some vital factors in understanding the seriousness of what is taking place in churches throughout North America. As is often the case in journalism, it is possible that Ms. Sataline’s article was altered by editors at Wall Street Journaland the final version was beyond her control – thus it is not our intention to criticize Ms. Sataline but rather to bring to light issues that in many ways have become obscure. Given the fact that so many people have now testified to the great damage, the unkind and often cruel treatment and the dangerous integration of non-biblical, New Age ideas into the Christian church through Purpose Driven, it is possible that the Wall Street Journal article could do more harm than good – by omitting the real key issues, readers may be led to believe that criticisms of Purpose Driven are trivial and thus unimportant.
    First, the article fell short in describing the underlying foundation of Purpose Driven, which is humanistic, ecumenical, and a betrayal of faith, and emphasized symptoms or signs of the movement (e.g.. removal of hymns and pews) rather than the dangerous and deceptive nature of it. The article said that critics, or resisters as Rick Warren has called them, are concerned about church growth tactics such as “mission statements” and “simplistic Bible teachings,” and while this may be true, we know from the countless emails and phone calls we have received that those who oppose Purpose Driven would describe their concerns as far more serious than that.
    Secondly, there was an underlying theme woven throughout the WSJ article depicting older, traditional church members who reject Purpose Driven versus younger, contemporary ones who want it. On Tuesday, after we read the WSJ article, we contacted Charles Jones, the man in Mississippi who is discussed in the WSJ article. Mr. Jones told us that, prior to he and other members leaving Iuka Baptist Church (where he had attended for over 59 years), he had been removed from a deaconship position and said that when the new Purpose Driven shift took place, “the older folks were totally left-out,” and leadership positions were given to younger members, sometimes new believers. Jones said that two other deacons were pressured to resign. This disregard for older, seasoned believers has become an earmark for Purpose Driven churches. At Lighthouse Trails, we have received many phone calls from older saints. A typical phone call would be from a man or woman in their sixties or seventies, who along with other members of their church, were concerned over the lack of biblical integrity of Purpose Driven and tried to persuade church leadership to reevaluate the decision to incorporate it into their church body. Jones told us, “We’ve been studying the Bible for a long time, and we recognized this was not biblical teaching.” Sometimes those who call us say that after decades of attending church, they have no where to go – all of the churches in their community have become or are influenced by Purpose Driven. Recently, Rick Warren told followers, “If your church has been plateaued for six months, it might take six months to get it going again. If it’s been plateaued a year, it might take a year. If it’s been plateaued for 20 years, you’ve got to set in for the duration! I’m saying some people are going to have to die or leave. Moses had to wander around the desert for 40 years while God killed off a million people before he let them go into the Promised Land. That may be brutally blunt, but it’s true. There may be people in your church who love God sincerely, but who will never, ever change.” (from Purpose Driven Resisters – Leave or Die)
    The WSJ article accurately showed that “Congregations nationwide have split or expelled members who fought the [Purpose Driven] changes,” and that Purpose Driven training for pastors and leaders meant “help [ing] them leave if they don’t stop objecting” and “when those congregants join a new church … pastors should call their new minister and suggest that the congregants be barred from any leadership role.” But what the WSJ article unfortunately left out was just how villainous “resisters” are viewed and treated. The article mentions a man named Rev. Dan Southerland, president of Transitions. It did not tell, however, that Southerland is a member of Saddleback Church and the author of a book calledTransitioning, which is sold on Rick Warren’s website and used to train leaders. In that book, Southerland states: Lighthouse Trails has witnessed these tactics first hand. Recently, Saddleback Church told Lighthouse Trails that they believed we had broken into their server and that Federal agents were “working on the case.” (see more) This accusation followed a series of emails from Rick Warren and phone calls from other Saddleback men over the last 18 months. In addition to our own experiences with opposing Rick Warren, we receive phone calls and emails every week by those who tell us how they were ostracized, ridiculed and intimidated by pro-Purpose Driven church leaders when they even slightly questioned the changes taking place.
    While we believe that the Wall Street Journal article can have value because it does alert the general public to problems with the Purpose Driven movement, we regret that the article did not mention anything about Rick Warren’s promotion and endorsement of contemplative spirituality (i.e., Spiritual Formation) and the emerging church. These aspects were carefully explained to the WSJ reporter with the hope that this story would show that the real reason why so many people are opposed to Purpose Driven goes far beyond the removal of pews and hymnals. As Pastor Bob DeWaay (quoted in the article and author of Redefining Christianity) stated, Rick Warren is “gutting” Christianity. We believe this gutting is removing the very tenets of our faith and replacing them with a seductive and sensual spirituality that ultimately diminishes biblical Christianity and the true gospel message of Jesus Christ.
    To Mr. and Mrs. Jones of Iuka, Mississippi and to all other brothers and sisters who have courageously stood for the faith in spite of ill and undeserved treatment, we salute you and thank you for being such examples of whom the church really needs…

continue reading: http://www.lighthousetrailsresearch.com
 

  12. December 17th, 2011 at 13:42 | #12

    Purpose Driven Life – Rick Warren Play List
    http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLBDF8FE8F7C6EDC77