Do you have stress?
If you do then drugstore.com has all kinds of products than can help you. Here are some examples.
Stress Relief Pills.
Stress Relief Tea
Stress Relief Spray
These all seem pretty standard. But, have you ever thought that Christianity or Jesus could be the answer to all your stress? If not, then don't worry (that was a pun) Rick Warren is now marketing the Christian faith and Biblical truths as 'ancient secrets for a less stressed, more relaxed and lighter, freer lifestyle. Here is the marketing piece that Saddleback sent out for this particular sermon.
We were so impressed by this brazen form of false advertising that we couldn't help but give Pastor Warren our April 2007 False Advertising Award.
If Christianity is supposed to be about stress relief, then we think those Christians who have suffered persecution for their faith around the globe and for the last 2000 years should sue Saddleback church and get their tithe money back.
Maybe Pastor Warren has forgotten the words of Jesus.
Matthew 10:34 "Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I have not come to bring peace, but a sword."
John 15:20 Remember the word that I said to you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you.
The Apostle Paul should also sue Saddleback church. Here is what he experienced as a Christian.
2 Corinthians 11:23 ...with far greater labors, far more imprisonments, with countless beatings, and often near death. 24 Five times I received at the hands of the Jews the forty lashes less one. 25 Three times I was beaten with rods. Once I was stoned. Three times I was shipwrecked; a night and a day I was adrift at sea; 26 on frequent journeys, in danger from rivers, danger from robbers, danger from my own people, danger from Gentiles, danger in the city, danger in the wilderness, danger at sea, danger from false brothers; 27 in toil and hardship, through many a sleepless night, in hunger and thirst, often without food, in cold and exposure. 28 And, apart from other things, there is the daily pressure on me of my anxiety for all the churches.
Perhaps Paul was doing something wrong. Why did Paul go through all this stress and trouble when all he had to do was apply the ancient secrets of Biblical stress relief? If we are to take Rick Warren seriously then we must conclude that Paul truly didn't understand what the Christian faith was all about. Otherwise Paul would have had far less stress in his life. Therefore, we should read 2 Corinthians 11:23-28 as a warning to us about what happens to people who don't properly apply the principles of Biblical stress relief.
Or maybe, just maybe Rick Warren's marketing of the gospel is way off! Perhaps Warren isn't telling people the truth about the cost of discipleship. Maybe Warren is sugar coating Christianity and teaching a different gospel.
Either way teaching people that the Christian faith is about relieving stress contradicts scripture and is false advertising and it deserves a mention in our museum of idolatry.