Q & A: Rick Warren
The uber-pastor talks with CT about politics, same-sex marriage, the economy, and baptism.

Sarah Pulliam at Christianity Today has just posted her interview with Rick Warren. He talks about the controversy surrounding his invocation at President Obama's inauguration, the uproar over his support of Proposition 8 in California banning same-sex marriage, and the thousands being baptized at his church. Here's an excerpt:

I know a lot has been happening recently at your church. Just a few weeks ago, you baptized 800 in one day.

I was in the water for over five hours. I had webbed feet. It had to be a record. You know, it says in Acts that at the day of Pentecost, 3,000 were baptized and added to the church that day. We had 2,400 added to the church that day. The world belongs to Saddleback. When we started Saddleback, it was a white suburban church. We speak 65 different languages. It's the United Nations. I baptized an Egyptian General; I baptized probably 50 or 60 nationalities.

After you posted an invitation to the baptism and membership, some bloggers criticized the promotion. In the promotion, you said new members could have their photo with Pastor Rick and get a free one-year subscription to The Purpose Driven Connection. Why did you advertise the event that way?

In the first place, I think every person should take a picture with the pastor who baptizes them. That's a memento, that's a spiritual hallmark. That's not anything new. It wasn't like, oh, this is something we've never done that's going to attract people. In the past 10 years, Saddleback has baptized over 20,000 new believers. We are, without a doubt, the most evangelistic church in America. There are churches that are bigger than Saddleback, but there are no churches that reach more people for Christ than Saddleback. There are no churches that send as many people into the missions field. There's not a church that has sent 8,000 people into the missions field.

Read the entire interview here.

April 09, 2009

Displaying 1–10 of 19 comments


October 10, 2009  2:58am

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October 10, 2009  2:57am

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October 10, 2009  2:54am

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April 29, 2009  9:15am

I think that Rick Warren has figured out how to grow the flock, the second and more important part is how to tell them the truth without losing them. It is almost always painful truth which offends people. Rick works on relationships first and then introduces them to the Gospel, I don't find fault with that.

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Another Rick

April 18, 2009  9:50am

Rick Warren has compromised the truth . It's as simple as that. No excuses, No justification. Just good ole politics at it's best. Rick Warren has conformed to the world in his comments about how he support gay rights, along with his soft shoe sermons.

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Nathaniel Rodriguez

April 16, 2009  8:20am

On Larry King live , Pastor Warren said that he is not against gay marriage anymore/he never campaigned against proposition 8 in Califorina. Whoever takes that stance has compromised the entire Bible. Two cities were destroyed for their disobedience in this matter/Sodaom&Gomorrah. Is he bigger than God? Is his Gospel better than Jesus? He is condemning the "gays" by not telling them the truth. If he can't be "straight" on this issue he cannot be right with God on any issue. What we plant that shall we reap.

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April 15, 2009  11:38am

"The other night instead, on Fox TV," /facepalm

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April 14, 2009  11:35pm

[quote]The other night instead, on Fox TV, I heard the whole message on Easter and not once he mentioned the "blood of Jesus", nor a "repentance for the sins"! He willingly avoided using those words[qoute] I don't think we watched the same Rick Warren on FOX Abel. The one I watched must of said "sin" 15-25 times. Just as people say that word is not in "Purpose Driven Life", it is, or that RW doesn't preach on "sin" in his church, he does. I know, I went there for more than 20 years. I am keen to hear the word "sin" from RW because of the unfounded criticism such as yours. I didn't pay attention to if he said the actual word "blood" or not but he most definitely said Christ died as a sacrifice for our sins. That's what the blood does.

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Hercule Poirot

April 14, 2009  8:24pm

I am a supporter or RW. Yet, I have a problem: RW says: "We are, without a doubt, the most evangelistic church in America. There are churches that are bigger than Saddleback, but there are no churches that reach more people for Christ than Saddleback. There are no churches that send as many people into the missions field/" Umm...bragging just a little bit there RW aren't you?

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April 14, 2009  11:33am

Abel, do tell ... who is 'Isa' to the Islamic world? Because, it is, after all ... 'Jesus' in Arabic ... just like 'Jezis' in Czech, 'Yesus' in Malay, etc.

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