The man-child leading the country's biggest church

Larry King: Do you think that eventually many more states are going to allow same-sex marriage?

Joel Osteen: You know, I don’t know where it’s all going … I’d love to see it stay between a male and a female, not knocking anybody else.

King: Supposing there were more states that had it. What would be the harm?

Victoria Osteen: We really want to see marriage between a man and a woman. There [are] going to be people who get together and have relationships and have what they call their families. But I just think marriage should be sanctified by the church. It should be between a man and a woman.

King: Should a gay couple be allowed to adopt?

Joel Osteen: I think that, again, it’s best for a male and a female. I’m not saying that gay people aren’t good people. …

King: Or good parents.

Joel Osteen: Yeah, exactly. But again, I like to shoot for God’s best, and that is a father and a mother in the home. It doesn’t always happen. I know a lot of people raised by single parents. And you know what? We bless them and pray for them as well. But I think God’s best is a male and female.

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21 thoughts on “The man-child leading the country's biggest church

  1. My expectations of Joel are so low that I was actually pleasantly surprised by that dialogue. It was bold compared to what he usually says. Sad, eh?

  2. Victoria sounded like the bold one. Its really, really hard for me to believe that JO writes his own sermons. When he’s in public his words sound so…childish/one dimensional as opposed to what you hear on TV (even though thats fluff and stuff too).

  3. I live in Houston and have personally witnessed the “preaching” from Osteen Senior and Junior. Quite a difference. I saw the interview and I have to agree with you Pastor; Victoria was waaay more bold than usual. She is normally right in toe with whatever he says. Although he has an enormous following, his audience has changed. When I was young and my grandmother took us to Lakewood (located in the hood by the way), we would hear fiery sermons on sin and deliverance. The audience was mainly African American and female. Those saints have returned to the smaller churches in our communities (Thank God). We have seen a swell in those churches again where sound doctrine is being preached. The Osteens now entertain the young hip crowd who don’t really want to change and live obedient lives, but believe there is a “god” somewhere…you know “The Feel Good Crowd”

  4. Hey, I actually was proud of JO for being as bold as he was. Larry King is notorious for using his skills to make Christians look “bad” (read: intolerant). Joel was clear (although he stumbled on the gay parent issue) that he believed in man/woman marriage, and also made it clear gay “families” was THEIR opinion, not his.

    He didn’t say it the way you or I would have…but then, who would LOL

    Charisma just did an article about Larry King and his global hot seat:

    http://www.charismamag.com/index.php/the-strang-report/20343-larry-king-and-christian-leaders

  5. Thanks for the link charmedia.

    Stephen Strang said “Appearing on Larry King Live is almost a no-win situation for a Christian leader.”

    One wonders then why would any Christian leader want to appear on the show when they know its obviously a trap?

    And if Im not mistaken this isnt Osteens first time on the show.

  6. I think the key here is everytime Joel responded he said I think… when he should have said God says…. If he is uncomfortable with saying what God says, well you get my point.

    King: Should a gay couple be allowed to adopt?

    No Larry, that is nothing short of child abuse.

  7. I *wonder* if the same folk who criticize JO/vO for not coming down harder actually take the time to send a note, an email or a letter to their ministry thanking them for their (semi) boldness and encouraging them to use their national platform to stand up for truth?

    This occasion is a perfect opportunity to reach out, form a connection and perhaps do a teaching moment. I can imagine they are under tremendous pressure, both from within their church and without (as Esther was). IF they are indeed serious about righteousness, even if not to our public “satisfaction,” now, they need all the support from true believers that they can get. God permitted their position for such a time as this. Remember, Lakewood, as I recall, did NOT waffle when the ‘gay families’ came to Lakewood, as did others…correct me if I’m wrong.

    Just saying…

  8. cm, I dont think “harder” is what people (or at least me) are looking for its “clearer”. As Mark noted a minister of Christ’s word should be clear about the source of his/her convictions. In that forum, under the microscope, its all important because it sends a message that we say one thing in church (preaching to the choir?) but in the culture when our light should shine brightest, we dim it so that we dont appear to be that different from the culture. To me that’s the big problem with JO and his types.

  9. I agree with you charmedia, this is a great time to reach out and commend them for even saying what they did about the subject.

    Religious people are often impossible to please. It’s like, folk speak against the fact that ministers are speaking boldly FOR same sex marriage…but then they also have something to say about ministers who DO speak against it but not in the way that they think it should be spoken against.

    It’s like, “well you speak against it only if you say it with a scripture or only if you reference God’s word or only if you use certain words…”

    But says who? Who defines what clearer is?? It was very clear to me that they are AGAINST Same sex marriage, but agree to love folk anyway…that’s clear to me. and the fact that they didn’t succumb when the ‘gay families’ visited their church is an even more clear message…

    I want to know who makes the rules other than God? and where in God’s word does it state that when a minister of a large church is on a news show with his wife that they have to speak against sin a certain way or it’s unacceptable??

    The bible tells me that….we are the light of the world…and that a city that is set on a hill cannot be hid. Matt 5:14

    So, whichever way JO/VO chose to speak against same sex marriage….their light is shining regardless and for that I give God the praise.

  10. wow, so let me get this straight: we are supposed to praise half cocked responses/apologies in the midst of a church-wide free fall from the truth?

    Thats a novel idea. And I’m very interested as to what that accomplishes.

  11. See… this is what happens when we desire to be relevant, rather than set apart (sanctified). Sometimes, no, most of the time, no, nearly all of the time, being “relevant” involves some type of compromise, usually watering down the truth. We are a peculiar people who are not [to be] conformed to this world. And, we’re supposed to boldly proclaim the gospel. I don’t know… maybe I’m too used to meat, and can’t get with similac.
    I’m praying for Joel, though. I pray that God empowers and enboldens him.

  12. To be clear, all: I’m not suggesting Similac. (I prefer a nice sirloin myself.) Nor am I suggesting compromise of the Gospel. I never offered the “relevance vs. sanctified” argument either. (And yes, I absolutely speak/stand up for God in my own part of the world.) I am saying this: Before we kill our own leaders for not saying it the way we would, at least reach out to them in hopes of steering them towards a bolder stance. The Osteens are on a world stage with the accompanying pressures. The prob with “us” is that we are vociferous against our own, even when they are TRYING to do the right thing , but eerily silent when the inevitable world backlash occurs. That probably has a lot to do with why more committed Christian leaders don’t speak out. We want them to be Superleaders on the world stage, but offer nothing in the way of backup and support. As much as I disagree with the morals of the gay community, their tactics are on point. They will organize and come out (pun intended) by the busloads and flood the media to promote their cause. We can’t come together to send an email to encourage a Christian brother under the harsh spotlight of the biggest interviewer in America. Anybody can be a critic, people. When leaders are wrong, call them out. When they’re right, applaud them. When they’re half-right, praise what they did right and offer illumination and correction on what they did wrong. Just like you (presumably) would do with your kids.

    Peace.

  13. Hello, Pastor Foster:

    As I was reading this article, a name immediately came to mind that my father used when describing someone with little or no ‘backbone’:
    Caspar Milquetoast.

    That is what ole Joel is, by Jiminy!

    Regards,
    Peter.

  14. We must understand that the word ‘relevant’ simply means being connected with the matter in hand.

    Jesus was a master at being relevant! It was the most powerful part of His ministry on earth. So how can you say that nearly all the time, being relevant involves some type of compromise? Did Jesus compromise because he was relevant?

    He spoke to farmers about seed, he spoke to fishermen about fish…and he spoke to tax collectors about money all in an effort to connect to the matter at hand…

    Who would the church reach if we weren’t relevant? How would we touch people across the world if we’re not relevant? Tell me, when’s the last time you saw some folk riding down the street on horses on their way to work? not lately huh? that’s because the culture and the times have changed and now we have cars.

    GCMWatch blog site is a relevant site because most people use computers now instead of writing letters by hand. what would it look like for DL to steadily send out pigeons to share his writings with people? it would look crazy! why? because it’s not relevant to the times we live in and the technology that’s available…it doesn’t match with the culture and the “world” that we live in. So, let’s not mistakingly lump being relevant with a compromise of truth..because it just doesn’t make any sense.

    We can be relevant as well as boldlly proclaim the gospel without watering it down.

    Why does it have to be one or the other?

  15. Well said, Pharisee ….

    I believe that is a message that Paul also conveyed in his writings, when he said when with Jews he became as a Jew (paraphrasing)…) He did not mean that he comprimised holy living. He was talking about being relevant.

  16. anmarie, that’s the point I sought to make. His answers resemble that of a child who is unsure of the world’s complexities and thus tries to very hard to answer grown up issues without a knowledge of the depth, impact or consequence of his responses.

    Like a child.

  17. I received a book of encouragement a couple of years ago. One of the quotes that was in the book goes as follows – “Silence is sometimes golden. At other times, it’s just plain yellow” (I wish I had thought of that one).

    Joel is the softest and most compromising “preacher” I think I’ve ever heard. And misrepresenting the word of God is just as bad as being silent. Joel has miraculously pulled off doing both at the same time; not just with this issue, but with other issues/questions as well.

    Marriage between a man and a woman is not God’s best……………it’s God’s ONLY!!! Adoption by a man and a woman is not God’s best……..it’s God’s ONLY! No, the ideal is not always reality (single parent mothers and fathers), but God’s ONLY is 1 man – 1 woman.

    “Best” has a habit of giving the implication that there are other “good” alternatives. I believe the next automatic response after using “THE BEST” is the phrase “AT LEAST”.

    The homosexual agenda has said – “It would be best if I marry a woman……but at least I’m married.” And those “AT LEAST’s” are sometimes a sign of compromise; whether consciously or uconsciously.

    With that said, Joel is so wishy-washy, yellow-backed, gutless, wimpy, lily-livered, spineless, timid and scared that anyone ought to be afraid to ask him if
    1 + 1 = 2

  18. Man-child…not sure of what he is talking about?
    Sounds a bit like our president…Mr. Obama

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