First off, we feel deeply for Mr. Warren the loss of his son. No parent can help but commiserate with him and his family in such a moment.
Mr. Warren continues to tweet, at least, we assume it’s his hand, although it could be one of his associates. Since the tweet is in his name, we’ll not hesitate to enter into a discussion, in spite of his personal situation.
A bit earlier in the day, he tweeted:
Pastors/leaders:1 You reproduce what you ARE, not what you want. 2 You can’t take others farther than you’ve been yourself.
— Rick Warren (@RickWarren) April 23, 2013
(UPDATE: It appears this tweet is no longer available.)
I was in the @unitedprayer account when I saw his tweet. I don’t think my personal account is following him. So from the former account, I replied:
@rickwarren On no. 2: servants of the Lord, like Jesus himself, point men to God, who causes them to do even greater works.
— United Prayer (@unitedprayer) April 23, 2013
Mr. Warren has drunk too deeply and too long at the fountain of business concepts thinly disguised in religious garb, that he has missed the power of the gospel in his tweet. As far as his second point goes, it may be true. But it cannot be left at that.
Jesus himself said that his disciples would do greater works than himself. “Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do, because I am going to the Father” (John 14.12 ESV).
Time and again I have seen men and women progress further than those who converted them, because the Spirit of God was in them. Mr. Warren apparently sees only the influence of his “pastor/leader” figure. He forgets that God is at work and can and will do more than any human force exerted upon a convert.
Someone might call us to be fair and consider that a whole theology cannot fit in a single tweet, and that would be right to acknowledge.
Mr. Warren apparently wants to motivate his pastor-readers. But making it sound as if all depends on his pastor-reader to carry forward the work doesn’t seem to be a motivator, but rather a weight to be carried.
A weight far too heavy for man.