This picture will lead many to do a double-take...Greg Laurie is on the left, Chuck Smith:founder and leader of Calvary Chapel in the middle, and Rick Warren on the right.
What is going on? Do they all have to be in the backpocket of one another?
On one website, they were blunt:
"I know that many people are going to be hurt by this news of Pastor Chuck Smith, Greg Laurie and Rick Warren appearing together on the same platform in “one accord.” For many who have called Calvary Chapel their home church the possibility of such once sound men of God (Laurie & Smith) appearing with an obvious wolf in sheep’s clothing (Warren) seems absolutely inconceivable. However, the truth of the matter is that is exactly what has happened."
Thus started a second look at what Calvary Chapel was all about.
Calvary Chapel seems to be a very appealing church and from the outside, one can truly be led to believe that this is a church that is supposely against the ecumenical movement, gets “deep” into the bible via their advertised "line by line" Bible teaching, and sticks by the fundamentals. Reading websites like Roger Oakland's, and about Calvary Chapel conferences such as the Red River Bible and Prophecy Conference with Calvary Chapel preachers and associated teachers exposing things like the Emergent movement, one would think that this is a church from the top down that stands against the one world religion and deception in the churches. We do not know what each of these particular teachers know or are privy to, but some of these things would surely disappoint even many well-meaning people within Calvary Chapel circles who do stand against deception with honest intentions.
Calvary Chapel even ironically has stood against Purpose Driven Life or has appeared to do so. Well some found out fast, this is not the whole story.
In this video at the 2:12 mark, watch Chuck Smith and Rick Warren together, at a the "20th Annual SoCal Harvest Crusade at Angels Stadium" held by Greg Laurie: they seem almost buddy-buddy, here is the dialogue:
Rick Warren: "Who wants to go to Disneyland after that?"
Chuck Smith: [laughs] "it's thrilling to see again the work of God's Holy Spirit transforming people from the power of darkness into the glorious kingdom of God"
Rick Warren: "And if there are people who still believe that crusade evangelism doesn't work, I have two words: Greg Laurie and it keeps going.
The associations with Rick Warren are a giant red flag. There are no, ands, ifs about it. While some may say this is a "guilt by association" false charge, one does not invite false teachers onto religious platforms, introduce them as 'a friend" and then let them speak. They did not trip over him at a coffeeshop, Greg Laurie, top Calvary Chapel pastor invited him. While we know human beings are fallible, I ask how could Chuck Smith and Greg Laurie not know about this?