Skip to comments.Can Joel Osteen Help You Pay Your Bills?
Posted on 12/19/2009 6:37:28 PM PST by marshmallow
Houston, Texas (CNN) -- Joel Osteen strides into the former Compaq Center. Some 20,000 people are standing and singing. Purple lights softly pulse across the ceiling, and mist floats around two giant screens flashing words to the songs.
It's not a pulpit but a podium. It's not an altar but a stage. There is no cross. Instead a huge globe spins, and two massive bubbling creeks flank the stage. A lighting system softens distant corners of the massive arena and spreads colored light and smoke in strategic spots. Somehow, the space that will hold 40,000-plus on Sunday morning doesn't feel like a sports arena.
In the control room, producers watch multiple camera angles and feeds.
Smiling broadly, Osteen bounds up the few stairs to the stage, closes his eyes, lifts his hands and leads a prayer.
"God, I'm going to start this week off in faith. Expecting your goodness. Expecting to have a blessed and a prosperous week. Amen. Well, God bless you. Give him your very best today."
Welcome to Sunday morning at Lakewood Church in Houston, Texas. It's reportedly the nation's largest congregation and probably one of the most diverse places in America. One third of these churchgoers are Hispanic, one-third African-American and a quarter white. There are dozens of nationalities.
Osteen will give this sermon twice. He later said he knows immediately which segments to edit together into a sermon that will air on television to millions three weeks later.
Between services, he is signing his most recent book in the lobby, just past the bookstore that is one of the highest-grossing Christian bookstores in America.
His wife, Victoria, is co-pastor of the church and a best-selling author in her own right. In fact, the Osteens are not paid to be pastors at Lakewood, according to .............
(Excerpt) Read more at cnn.com ...
Don’t say that! Never agree w/the enemy.
KING: Because we've had ministers on who said, your record don't count. You either believe in Christ or you don't. If you believe in Christ, you are, you are going to heaven. And if you don't no matter what you've done in your life, you ain't.OK, a "minster of God" who denies that Christ is the only way?
OSTEEN: Yeah, I don't know. There's probably a balance between. I believe you have to know Christ. But I think that if you know Christ, if you're a believer in God, you're going to have some good works. I think it's a cop-out to say I'm a Christian but I don't ever do anything ...
KING: What if you're Jewish or Muslim, you don't accept Christ at all?
OSTEEN: You know, I'm very careful about saying who would and wouldn't go to heaven. I don't know ...
KING: If you believe you have to believe in Christ? They're wrong, aren't they?
OSTEEN: Well, I don't know if I believe they're wrong. I believe here's what the Bible teaches and from the Christian faith this is what I believe. But I just think that only God with judge a person's heart. I spent a lot of time in India with my father. I don't know all about their religion. But I know they love God. And I don't know. I've seen their sincerity. So I don't know. I know for me, and what the Bible teaches, I want to have a relationship with Jesus.
It wasn't a hard question. This is what the Bible teaches. The same B ible he waves in the air during his weekly production and claims to believe every word.
You just keep sinking deeper and deeper. (James 4:1-4) Besides, I was just being glib about M.Teresa because your original comment was so overstated.
Your remarks on Deut. don't pertain to us. We're not Jews, under the law given to Moses (Levitical Priesthood), nor are we living in the promised land.
We're getting off topic here. Prosperity ministries should be our focus.
Whoops,..my post #133 was meant for you.
Matt 19 is pretty clear. Jesus answered His' disciples by telling them to forsake all their worldly things and they'd be rewarded with spiritual things. Jesus certainly didn't tell them to go and build mega-churches and keep the doors locked 5 days a week.
"but we are promised that God would open the windows of heaven and pour out blessings when we give tithes and offerings."
It seems as though you and CyberAnt (who quoted Deut 28) are hung up on the "conditional & temporal" promises God made solely to the nation of Israel. We are not Jews, we don't live in the covenant land, we're not under the condemnation of the law given to Moses, and we certainly have a perfect Priesthood compared to the Levites. (Heb 10:1-10)
The Israelites were not able to receive the promises/blessings because of their disobedience. What makes you think we would fare any better under the conditions of the old covenant? If you are trying to receive the blessings God promised Israel (by quoting Malachi) then you must also partake of the curses, too.
The parallel verse to that is in Matthew 5.
It says, ""Blessed are the poor in spirit, For theirs is the kingdom of heaven. "
The New Testament is replete with “poor in spirit”- The widow’s mite; the outcast lepers; the blind beggars; and of course the poor and helpless infant born in an animal manger.
By no account can one reach the “prosperity gospel” of the Osteens, Schullers, and Benny Hinns of this world as they decor-project with Hollywood vulgarity their version of the Bible and of course, truth be told, enormously enriching themselves and their families in the process.
God gives us gifts and also blesses the work of our hands to multiply what we do.
"Matt 19 is pretty clear. Jesus answered His' disciples by telling them to forsake all their worldly things and they'd be rewarded with spiritual things. Jesus certainly didn't tell them to go and build mega-churches and keep the doors locked 5 days a week."
You can take any example to a ridiculous conclusion if you try hard enough.
Saying that God is only concerned with spiritual things is such a mistaken attitude. There are so many teachings in the OT and NT concerning money and how we will be blessed or cursed depending on how we handle it. I can cite those but I bet you are familiar with them already.
"We are not Jews, we don't live in the covenant land, we're not under the condemnation of the law given to Moses, and we certainly have a perfect Priesthood compared to the Levites. (Heb 10:1-10)"
Nope, we are not Jews. But we are ingrafted in the vine. And Jesus came to fulfill the Law, not to destroy it. We have a better covenant.
"The Israelites were not able to receive the promises/blessings because of their disobedience. "
Not true. They went through many periods where they rec'd the blessings because they were obedient. They lived by God's principles and prospered during those times. There are many examples of people who prospered because they followed God's laws of handling their finances. The times they were disobedient were the times where they were taken into captivity and they became a debtor nation.
"What makes you think we would fare any better under the conditions of the old covenant? "
We aren't, both as a nation and as individuals in this day right now. Look at the current crisis we are in. If people (and our leaders) had stayed true to biblical principles of not going into debt then we wouldn't be in this position now.
"If you are trying to receive the blessings God promised Israel (by quoting Malachi) then you must also partake of the curses, too."
As I said, Jesus came to fulfill the Law, and not one jot or tittle has been replaced. Right now we are suffering as a nation (and will suffer even more) because of us turning our back on those principles laid out in the OT. We have experienced the blessings in the past and right now we are enduring the curses.
All the promises/blessings come via Abraham. There was only ONE promised Seed (Jesus) of Abraham, and through Him all the nations would be blessed. The nation of Israel was only the vessel.
Gal 3:16 Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ.
The law given later at Sinai do NOT affect the promises made to Abraham.
Gal 3:17And this I say, that the covenant, that was confirmed before of God in Christ, the law, which was four hundred and thirty years after, cannot disannul, that it should make the promise of none effect.
3:18 For if the inheritance be of the law, it is no more of promise: but God gave it to Abraham by promise.
Thus, our justification comes solely by faith in Christ Jesus.
Gal 3:29And if ye be Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise.
I disagree that Israel ever prospered in a secular way. Solomon called his own accomplishments vanity. (Eccl 2:10-11)
Anyone who’s eyes are constantly blinking is lieing. That’s a fact.
The guy talks about nothing but money and if people didn’t give him their money he’d find another way to get it. And if it isn’t about money why does he pass the hat? I have a problem with any so called man of God taking a 12 million dollar advance. Give it all away, Joel, and I might believe your b.s. P.T. Barnum would be proud of him. This way to the egress!
In fact, Joel, give me a million bucks of your money and God will bless you! What’s that? It only works one way?
The founder of the SLA said “If you want to get rich don’t start a business. Start a religion.”
A blind man wants links. No matter what proof you give him he wouldn’t believe it. “Blinky Eye” Osteen’s followers are no different from Obamabots. Blind as bats and brainwashed.
First of all, Satan has been granted authority over the earth.
Second, he does not preach the plan for salvation. He preaches “give your money to me and be happy.”
Obviously I feel very strongly about this. His wife pitched a fit on the airplane and said “Do you know who I am?” The flight attendent lost the suit because she didn’t have a suit. You can’t sue someone for being a fraud unless you have been defrauded. The flight attendent was simply offended. And Victoria did what it was said she did. She was upset because of the alcoholic drink she spilled. Joel calmed her down and got her off the airplane. He was trying to avoid the obvious.
I haven’t heard brother Joel say anything about charity. If he told his followers to give to charity they wouldn’t have anything left to give him.
These people actually put Osteen on the same level as Jesus. They defend him and call those of us who suspect him Pharasees. I’m sure a lot of them only “think” they know Jesus. I thought I knew Him for years until my eyes were actually opened. That’s the day I stopped watching Schuler.
You sound like one can’t make it to Heaven without Joel. I don’t need someone to tell me what’s in the Bible. I can read. And I wonder about T.V. evangelism. I think if Jesus wanted it on T.V. He’d start up KGOD on Mt. Ararat.
Allot of what you say are promises might be better understood as possibilities.
When John was deep in the dungeon of prison Jesus’s deciples told him about it, Jesus did not rescue him rather he told his deciples to...” go tell John “...you can read the rest. But Jesus did not go to him, nor rescue.
The point I’m making is Christ has never been a magic genie bottle you rub for Him to do your magic. There are certain things in life that are only learned by experience and sometimes we have to be in a dungeon or other difficult places in life. He will see us thru...but we do go thru.... Even His deciples were not men of wealth.
“I’ve never seen a poor person help a poor person”
Widow’s mite.....Jesus had much to say about her and less of those who gave of their wealth.
Typically churches don't talk a lot about giving to other charities because usually, as with Lakewood, the church itself is involved in a a lot of charitable works. And He does teach and write about the value of giving in general. So you've got a false premise and a false witness here.
If he told his followers to give to charity they wouldnt have anything left to give him.
Sorry to see you taking the Pharisee road of accusation and condemnation. Have you never read what the Lord says about passing sentence on another brother?
Matthew 7:1 Judge not, that ye be not judged.
Romans 2:1 Therefore thou are inexcusable, O man, whosoever you are that judges: for wherein you judge another, you condemn yourself; for you that judge do the same things.
Romans 2:3 And do you think this, O man, that judges them which do such things, and does the same, that thou shalt escape the judgment of God?
James 4:11 Speak not evil one of another, brethren. He that speaks evil of his brother, and judges his brother, speaks evil of the law, and judges the law: but if thou judge the law, thou art not a doer of the law, but a judge.
God instituted prophets teachers and pastors in the church to exhort, comfort and strengthen, not to read the Bible for us.
You sound like one cant make it to Heaven without Joel.
Whoa, that's a stretch. I was talking about spiritual warfare. In fact that's what a lot of this discussion is really all about. Satan (and the Pharisees) hate effective, joyful, powerful Christians (many besides Joel - Osteen just happens to be the latest lightning rod) who are effectively helping God's people to to have faith, hope, love, and joy in their lives as they overcome the world, the flesh and the devil.
Satan (and the Pharisees) also hate effective means of communicating God's message. If you don't think God, in these last moments before his coming has not ordained mass media in his mercy to spread the good news of the Gospel ans far and as wide and as quickly as possible, then I think you serve a fairly weak God.