25 September, 2006

Joel Osteen Is At It Again

Those who have been readers of The Dawg Howse for awhile might recall that last October I wrote a couple of articles about Joel Osteen and his blunders on the Larry King Show, ABC's "Good Morning America" and an article on the Fox News website. (If you look in the archives to the left of this page and click on October, those articles can be found)
Almost a year ago, I warned that Osteen was treading thin ice with a watered down version of the Gospel. Basically, he preaches a "rah-rah, you can do it, I'm ok, your ok, feel good about yourself message." I said last October that I was not calling him a false teacher, and I am still not calling him a false teacher, but I will say that his message is weak at best, and is very dangerous. As I stated last fall, it is not so much what Osteen says that is the problem, it is what he does not say. You will not hear him preach a message on sin and the need for confession and repentance. You will not hear a message on the cross nor the blood of Jesus. He is quoted more than once for saying that people don't need to hear a message that tells them they are sinners, they need to hear a positive message that will lift them up. Hey, that sounds wonderful at face value, but is that what God's Word says? The Gospel message is supposed to convict (not condemn, but convict) of of our sinful nature and cause us to turn away from sin and toward the blood stained cross of Calvary. The Gospel should make us squirm when there is sin in our hearts and rejoice when that sin is cleansed from our lives by the blood of Jesus. Jesus' message was not a message about feel good about yourself, but rather to cause us to see our nakedness and the need for his righteousness to cover us.
This is not what Osteen preaches.

Last Friday (September 22) an article appeared in the BP News (Baptist Press) about another great blunder by Mr. Osteen. It seems he was recently in Boston for a book signing when someone asked him his opinion on gay marriage, which by the way has been legal in Massachusetts for two years. The Boston Herald (secular media, mind you) wrote that when this question was asked of him, Osteen "suddenly got sheepish."

Quoting the BP New article, it reports that Osteen's response was,
"I don't think it's God's best," Osteen said, according to the Sept. 2 edition of the Herald. "I never feel like homosexuality is God's best."
Pressed further, Osteen added, "I don't feel like that's my thrust ... you know, some of the issues that divide us, and I'm here to let people know that God is for them and He's on their side."

(You can find the entire BP News article here)

I do not like stirring controversy in the Body of Christ, nor do I like just openly criticizing another Pastor. However, this man has tremendous recognition, power in influence, not only in the church world, but in the secular world as well. I have to ask, how many times should the Body of Christ just sweep his mess under the rug and hope that no one notices? How many times do we excuse his antics by saying he is young and inexperienced? I guess each one must make up their own mind about that, but as
for myself, I do not watch the man any longer and will not purchase anything else he writes. I will continue to pray for the man and his ministry, but my prayer is that if he will not repent and preach the truth, I pray that God will silence him before he leads others astray.


Sean McKee said...

Several months ago we pitched in the trash can a copy of his book "Your Best Life Now" (got to love that title).

Most of these guys are just self-help gurus with a Christian fa├žade. I’m all for confidence and feeling good about yourself but that is not was the gospel is about.

Roughrider said...

I read his book and tried to watch his program. Both reminded me a diluted root beer. It's supposed to taste like something, but it fails somehow.

ruthrap said...

Pastor, everything you just stated confirmed how I have felt about the guy from the first time I heard him preach....and I thought it was just me! and what roughrider said about him is a great discription! I will second that!!!

Anonymous said...

I can imagine it to be rough to try and take over a legacy that your father lays out before you... but Troy and I feel the same way.. watered down gospel.

You know I am not a fan of confrontation either. And I don't like the all Hell fire and brinstone preaching... grew up with that.. was afraid to read revelations until just a few years ago. But you can't float a boat with holes. I have learned that jsut because people accept you more readily with the froo froo doesn't mean it gets you anywhere... becasue after time they will grow bored with it and move on.

And all the people that go for it... don't you want the real thing and not somethign that makes you tingle a little while?

sad. hope it changes... because God is callign us to Truth.. ALL of it, the harshness of it alogn with the gentleness of it.

David W. Reish said...

Thus another reason I don't wathc him or buy his books.

Tony said...


I agree...Joel Osteen is simply the prosperity Gospel's next turn at the windmill. What concerns me a great deal is that he is the pastor of the largest "evangelical" church in the country and it won't be long before his opinions are coveted by high brow media outlets on a much more regular basis and his face will be the standard for the evangelical community...at least in the world's eyes. If you got a qeustion,let's go ask Joel. I am sure his foible with BP won't be the last. Scary, scary stuff.

Deborha's Palm Tree said...

Watered down Gospel...mamby pamby religion...a form of Godliness but lack the power thereof? Hmmm? Been praying for that congregation! That the Holy Spirit would convict them of the humanism that is taking place...Praying for the leaders of the Evangelical Church that they would get some backbone and call it what it is...not be afraid to lose a few million dollars that this ministry is bringing in...and then a Nehemiah to come forth to rebuild the walls that have been breached and to bring unity in the midst of it all...praying for Joel as well, that the Holy Spirit will do a work in him...that boldness will come and fear of man will be gone...God is love..but LOVE also chastens...

Jeanne said...

Please pray for this man and those he is leading down the path of destruction? I can not understand for the life of me why 'no one in that building has challenged him' on what he is teaching. Instead of 'holding up that Bible and having them say some montra Sunday after Sunday', why not "open up that Bible and teach and what the LORD says he wants us to know and do"? I unless I'm mistaken, perhaps he's afraid that his 'non-reading' of it, and the 'constant' para-phrasing will show him up.
Also, other then inviting Jesus into your hearts 'at the end' of the program, why not 'talk' about 'Him' through out the show, so that people will know where you really stand via the Bible???
I've watched that show Sunday after Sunday, see people with the Bible (or at least I think it's the Bible) open on their laps, but Joel says one or two verses (usually para-phrased) and that's it.
My Arch-Bishop tells us day in and day out, if he stops following God/Jesus, and presenting the Gospel via the Word for us to "run" from the church as fast as we can. He 'constantly' says, it's about God, Jesus, and the Word, or hell with satan. Which will 'we' choose? Play time is over, and Jesus is coming back sooner than any of us realize. I pray to God that Osteen and those people in that building, as well as Carlton Pearson, and others who need Christ repent and seek the 'real' Jesus Christ before it's too late.