Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Church Leaders Rebuke Joel Osteen

"He must hold firm to the trustworthy word as taught, so that he may be able to give instruction in sound doctrine and also to rebuke those who contradict it." (Titus 1:9)

     Few evangelical Christians are unfamiliar with Houston pastor Joel Osteen.  Sadly, even with Osteen's popularity, he still seems to be flying under the radar in the sense that many still consider him orthodox (e.g. his books are still selling big in 'Christian' retail outlets and Lakeside Church in Houston is one of the biggest in the country).  Interestingly, when we lived in Orange County, California our next door neighbor (from Lebanon and a committed Muslim) loved to listen to Osteen's weekly television broadcast.  Though we tried to share the gospel with her, this Muslim's view of Christianity was found in the message of Joel Osteen.  Similarly, one of my co-workers was a big fan of Osteen, but not a fan of biblical Christianity.  Didn't Jesus say something about the world loving it's own?! 
     As John MacArthur points out so well in this short video, Osteen's message is one that appeals to everything the carnal heart desires and is, therefore, nothing short of Satanic.  In the next short video, pastor Steven Lawson rebukes Osteen for his cowardly denial of the gospel on Larry King live.  Lastly, Way of the Master Radio, has produced a short video contrasting the preaching of Paul Washer with Osteen.  The contrast between Washer and Osteen is stark to say the least (especially as it relates to the nature and needs of man).
     As long as Osteen remains a hot commodity in the evangelical world, his public false teaching needs to be publicly rebuked as pastor's MacArthur, Lawson, Washer, and others have done.  Osteen attracts many with his positivity, charm, and unassuming style . . . but this is also what makes him especially dangerous since his message cannot be found in the pages of Scripture (unless he strips verses out of context of course, which he often does).  With Osteen's vast influence we need to pray he will repent of his false teaching, begin to preach the Word of God accurately, and preach the cross of our Lord Jesus.  His errors as a supposed pastor are egregious, which makes his popularity all the more disturbing.

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