September 15, 2011

I Love Joel Osteen

There are days I really feel like a hater. So I think I need to clarify something: I love Joel Osteen. And when I say I love him, it's with the same conviction and compelling that is driven through my heart toward every other human being. As a Christ-follower, Jesus teaches me that I'm even supposed to love and pray for my enemies. And no, I don't consider Joel as one of my enemies. In his defense, he doesn't have a clue who I am. (Although, I think Joel would like me. We both have fairly nice teeth.) But here's where our roads wind up diverging and we end up in 2 completely different worlds: Joel is preaching a false Gospel. And as a Christian, pastor, and one who is called to "preach the word", I am also called to point out and expose ANYTHING claiming to be the Gospel that misses the mark. [See Colossians 2:4, 2 Timothy 4:1-5, 2 Peter 3:13-17]

Last night I happened to catch Robin Roberts' latest interview with the Houston mega-church pastor. You can watch it HERE.  Incredibly, for a few brief moments, Joel was actually sounding a bit orthodox. But of course, that all came crashing down in an instant. When asked about the massive multi-million dollar production that is Lakewood Church, and the well-oiled production that goes into their services, Osteen made this statement: "If Jesus were here today, he'd have the big production; the lights." (Wha....?) While Jesus spent his entire ministry saying things that turned more and more people away - while He repeatedly insisted that people who were healed NOT turn the spotlight on His works - while He got on the floor, wrapped a towel around His waist, and told His disciples that if they truly wanted to lead they had to serve - somehow Joel walks away from that Jesus in those Gospels with the idea that He would welcome the LED's, flashers, and spotlights all being pointed at Him. This is only the latest in a multitude of misguided comments that lead me to wonder if Joel Osteen really knows who Jesus Christ is and what He calls us to as His followers. 

Joel: "God wants you to be happy!" (Interview)
Jesus: "God wants you to be holy." (1 Peter 1:14-16)

I do NOT hate Joel Osteen. But I do hate, abhor, and detest anything that presents itself as the Word of God or the Gospel that is not ROOTED in the truth of God's Word or the sin-redeeming, life-changing, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. 

Much more to add to this conversation.
What are your thoughts and views on this?


Aubrie said...

I'm kind of in a similar situation (or I was) except I know the person...a friend of mine is in a same-sex relationship, preaching that you can be both gay and a Christian, using the "Jesus loves me, God created me this way" line. One day she asked me straight up what I thought, and I told her I thought the Bible was very clear that it was wrong. I told her that I think Satan twists Scripture to get us right where he wants us, and she didn't think she was twisting it. She was studying 1 Cor. and I told her to let me know what she thought when she got to chapter 6. She never did...she moved away and I still pray for conviction in her life because she's leading others to believe the same thing. I just don't understand how something so blatantly obvious in the Bible can be twisted so much.

Brian Mayfield said...

I'll pray with you Aubrie! I think you "spoke the TRUTH in love" and that's all you can do. You led her to the right scriptures as well. Praying the Spirit of God will grab hold of her heart!

Keena said...

I agree w/ you totally on this point. I have never been a fan of his either. He does not preach truth, at least according to Scripture. It scares me to see so many following after him.

Joyce said...

We have had some discussion about this in our Sunday School classes in the past...KUDOS for expressing this so well!

Stony and Brit said...

Thank you for this post.