I wrote an article a few weeks ago concerning some of Mr. Warren's social gospel agenda subtitled, "...when a pastor tries to be a politician." That same sentiment has been echoed in an excellent piece written by Bryan Preston for Michelle Malkin on her tremendous blog at HotAir.com.
It is a legitimate thing to question Mr. Warren when he is acting more like a statesmen than a shepherd. On one hand, he claims the following:
"I'll go anywhere as long as I'm not muzzled. Now, if they put restrictions on what I say, that's a different issue. But I have a basic message that says you were made by God and for God, and until you understand that, life isn't going to make sense. And if I [don't] get the opportunity to share that, then I don't go. I don't ever go into these places as a politician. I don't go in as a diplomat. I don't go in as trying to take a job that's not my job. But if I get an opportunity to go in and bring hope, encouragement, and the message of the good news, I'm going to do it." (emphasis added)
BUT, then on the other hand he says this,
"PASTOR RICK WARREN, AUTHOR, "THE PURPOSE-DRIVEN LIFE": I'm always happy to be a back channel for peace. (emphasis added).As Mr. Preston brilliantly points out that phrase is nothing short of politics--
"It's possible that Warren thinks he's being a back channel for peace just by being an American and showing up in Pyongyang and Damascus and shaking hands with the monsters that rule there. But, isn't that engaging in diplomacy and politics?"
And that should be a concern that deserves all our attention.
Here is an important question for us all to ponder: where in the Word of God has the Lord given guidelines for any of his pastors to act like politicians, bartering the centrality of the cross, the gospel of sola fide, and the exclusivity and glory of Jesus Christ in order to be co-belligerent with nonbelievers to battle and/or cure cultural, societal maladies? The answer to that question is critical to understanding how a pastor biblically should function, confront, and be a voice for the gospel and the veracity of Scripture in a secular society. To paraphrase Luther, Mr. Warren's thoughts of Scripture, the pastorate, and a biblical model of ministry "are far too human."
Why didn't Mr. Warren call any of these "monsters" to repentance from their sin; to deny themselves, take up their cross, and follow Jesus Christ as Lord of their lives? You know why... politics won't allow what the gospel commands.
I would strongly encourage you to read Bryan Preston's insightful and lucid article.