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Author Topic: Is Joel Osteen a Word-of-Faith pastor?  (Read 10339 times) Average Rating: 0
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Matthew777
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« on: June 07, 2005, 11:26:01 PM »

Joel Osteen is pastor of Lakewood Church, the largest congregation in America, and the most watched televangelist. Olsteen does not remind followers of our sinful nature and God's judgement but instead preaches a message of material success under the favor of God. I do not doubt the sincerity of his faith but the influence in which he has on people scares me.
He is not exactly a Benny Hinn but their messages are strikingly similar; Osteen just seems to be more subtle about it and therefore, much more people are able to take him seriously.ÂÂ  

For an article on Osteen and his ministry, please visit this site:

http://www.discernment.org/LeavenLakewood.htm
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« Reply #1 on: June 08, 2005, 12:26:47 AM »

In all honesty, I sympathize with Osteen. He really does have this certain charisma to him, whether it be from God or the evil one.
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« Reply #2 on: June 08, 2005, 06:39:34 AM »

Joel Osteen is creepy.
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« Reply #3 on: June 08, 2005, 11:44:38 AM »

I live in Houston and work next to his new "church" which is the old Compaq Center.ÂÂ  It's a huge arena designed for concerts, which is what his "church" is about.

I made one of the guys mad at our church.ÂÂ  He came for REAL Easter and told me how happy he is since going to Osteen's church and how guilty the metropolitan and our priest makes him feel.ÂÂ  He doesn't help at church, he doesn't donate money, he misses all the time, he doesn't fast, etc., and the sermons about that stuff makes him feel guilty.  At Osteen's church he always leaves feeling good about himself and Osteen's collection plate is never empty.  He said he was really happy.

I told him that sometimes we need to hear what we don't want to hear.ÂÂ  Sometimes we shouldn't feel good about ourselves, especially if we aren't good.ÂÂ  I told him that Jesus made people feel so good about themselves that they crucified Him.ÂÂ  

I may have been too offensive.ÂÂ  He hasn't come back and I feel bad about that.
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« Reply #4 on: June 08, 2005, 11:48:15 AM »

I live in Houston and work next to his new "church" which is the old Compaq Center.ÂÂ  It's a huge arena designed for concerts, which is what his "church" is about.

I made one of the guys mad at our church.ÂÂ  He came for REAL Easter and told me how happy he is since going to Osteen's church and how guilty the metropolitan and our priest makes him feel.ÂÂ  He doesn't help at church, he doesn't donate money, he misses all the time, he doesn't fast, etc., and the sermons about that stuff makes him feel guilty.ÂÂ  At Osteen's church he always leaves feeling good about himself and Osteen's collection plate is never empty.ÂÂ  He said he was really happy.

I told him that sometimes we need to hear what we don't want to hear.ÂÂ  Sometimes we shouldn't feel good about ourselves, especially if we aren't good.ÂÂ  I told him that Jesus made people feel so good about themselves that they crucified Him.ÂÂ  

I may have been too offensive.ÂÂ  He hasn't come back and I feel bad about that.

Yeah, tell him to read the Beatitudes.  "Blessed are you when men shall revile you and persecute and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely for My sake."
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« Reply #5 on: June 08, 2005, 12:25:55 PM »

no comment.
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« Reply #6 on: June 08, 2005, 12:27:16 PM »

What good is a "mega-church" with a neato-sound system and so much money they can use it for toilet-paper, when everyone there is going to die in their sins?

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« Reply #7 on: June 08, 2005, 01:17:53 PM »

I've got a better idea of what those people with mega-churches and uber-amounts of money could do:  why not hold off on buying that state-of-the-art sound system and projector and instead spend those $25,000 helping some of the poor, huh?  Oh, wait, I forgot.  The official religion of the United States is Me-ism.
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« Reply #8 on: June 08, 2005, 01:19:57 PM »

actually....unfortunately I think that Orthodoxy can use that advice too
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« Reply #9 on: June 08, 2005, 01:58:22 PM »

Well, it's not just Mr. Osteen that's like this. Watch TBN (if you can stomach it that is  Huh) and you will see that most of them are like exact replicas of each other. Kind of reminds me of the "borg" from Star Trek. Another fun thing to do is walk into a christian book store and look at all the junk they peddle. Even when I was a protestant it used to drive be crazy. 
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« Reply #10 on: June 08, 2005, 02:01:38 PM »

yeah....ever seen this guy Jack van Impe?....absolute nut-case that man is.  I wouldn't be surprised if he has a member card to the good ole M & M (Michigan Militia)......my mother, who is a Catholic watches this man every chance she gets....I tell her she crazy
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« Reply #11 on: June 08, 2005, 02:07:38 PM »

Quote
....absolute nut-case that man is.

The story was true!  Yoda did become Orthodox!!!  Two incidents, bro, it's GOTTA be you!

 Grin

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« Reply #12 on: June 08, 2005, 02:29:53 PM »

Oh, wait, I forgot. The official religion of the United States is Me-ism.

According to Word of Faith doctrine, wealth is a sign of God's favor and poverty is a sign of God's judgement.
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« Reply #13 on: June 08, 2005, 02:32:11 PM »

.....then i guess these idiots never read the book of Job....or the Gospel for that matter.....last time I checked, I believe Jesus hung out with beggars and cripples
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« Reply #14 on: June 08, 2005, 02:39:07 PM »

I wouldn't call them idiotic, misled perhaps. At his church, Osteen prays that everyone in the congregation will have a well-paying job with healthcare. I don't find too much of a problem with that.
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« Reply #15 on: June 08, 2005, 02:48:41 PM »

This is what the Paula Zahn show said on a feature of Osteen:
"He's the new-age preacher who brandishes his Bible as the ultimate self-help book, with God as every man's personal financial adviser."
At first, I felt a little offended by this. But when I thought more about Osteen's particular breed of Christianity, it does seem like new-ageism with an evangelical face.ÂÂ  
This is the Washington Post article that the Paula Zahn report was probably based on:
http://www.religionnewsblog.com/10085

This part is a little startling:
"He is unapologetic that he lives well in a $1 million house in an upscale neighborhood and that he is pouring the church's offerings into the Compaq Center these days, not into charities. "I feel like God wants us to prosper," he said. "My dad grew up in the Depression. . . . It is not God's will for anybody to live where you can't support your family. . . . [Houston Astros pitcher] Roger Clemens just signed for $18 million -- man, don't tell me I can't have a nice house and send my kids to college."
Osteen said if the church "had that vow-of-poverty mentality, I don't know if we could raise $80 million" for the Compaq Center."
http://www.religionnewsblog.com/10085

It is hard for me to read this kind of stuff because he is so likeable and I actually do enjoy watching his telecast.
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« Reply #16 on: June 08, 2005, 04:17:12 PM »


It is hard for me to read this kind of stuff because he is so likeable and I actually do enjoy watching his telecast.


Well you shouldn't be - he's deceiving potentially millions.  He was a completely warped message that turns a blind eye to repenting, taking up your cross to follow Christ no how hard it may be, etc. 
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« Reply #17 on: June 08, 2005, 04:22:52 PM »

But perhaps his positive message will bring people to Christ who otherwise would not have looked. But then again, Osteen's Gospel seems to be more about wearing Victoria's Secret for your husband and getting the best parking spaces at Bloomingdales than salvation.
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« Reply #18 on: June 08, 2005, 05:19:18 PM »

But perhaps his positive message will bring people to Christ who otherwise would not have looked. But then again, Osteen's Gospel seems to be more about wearing Victoria's Secret for your husband and getting the best parking spaces at Bloomingdales than salvation.

Now you're gettin' it!  Wink
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« Reply #19 on: June 08, 2005, 05:31:57 PM »

My recent post on the topic in the Modern Church Fathers seems apt: "Not many believed in the witness of previous fathers; and this not because the testimony is false but because faith entails ascetic living."

Elder Sophrony

It seems to me that this type of "spirituality" has its root in the divorce of ascetical life from Christianity that began to happen in the West.  This is one of the results of seeing Christianity as a belief system rather than a way of life. 
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« Reply #20 on: June 08, 2005, 07:00:10 PM »

Well, if a Christ-themed self-help program is a way of life, then perhaps Osteen counts.
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« Reply #21 on: June 08, 2005, 07:12:10 PM »

Notice the emphasis on asceticism is lost.
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« Reply #22 on: June 09, 2005, 05:01:09 AM »

Despite the watered down theology, I always at least try to give these ministry groups the benefit of the doubt just because many will probably be brought to Christ who otherwise would not have.
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« Reply #23 on: June 09, 2005, 10:48:17 AM »

Quote
Despite the watered down theology, I always at least try to give these ministry groups the benefit of the doubt just because many will probably be brought to Christ who otherwise would not have.

I'm hesitant to say this precisely because I understand the subjectivity of the human experience and how it doesn't always mesh perfectly with objective reality (even though we may still, in spite of our ignorant misunderstandings be in touch with that particular reality)...but if people actually take him seriously, at his word, I have to just wonder what "Christ" they are being brought to?

It would be a "Christ" drained of anything substantial He had to say, drained of any significance to how He lived, died, and rose again, and one about which only the most vague things would be said (slogans with little certain theological content, mainly drawn from the Bible like "Lord" or "Son of God", which without that content, can be understood in all sorts of erroneous ways.)  Perhaps someone can or will find their way to Christ in all of that, but IMHO, no more so than they might being a religious Buddhist (perhaps even less!), or a Muslim.

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« Reply #24 on: June 09, 2005, 12:16:24 PM »

Okay.ÂÂ  What's wrong the Osteen?ÂÂ  Here is his Osteen's Creed recited at every service.

CONFESSION: This is my Bible. I am what it says I am. I have what it says I have. I can do what it says I can do. Today I will be taught the Word of God. I boldly confess. My mind is alert. My heart is receptive. I will never be the same. I am about to receive the incorruptible, indestructible ever-living seed of the Word of God. I will never be the same. Never, never, never. I’ll never be the same. In Jesus’ name.

To some I suppose it sounds like Osteen is talking about the Bible.ÂÂ  He's NOT.ÂÂ  He has made himself a mini-pope.ÂÂ  Each service his congregation announces that what Osteen is about to tell them is, essentially, infallible.ÂÂ  Osteen has some "seed" of the "Word of God" which he distributes.ÂÂ  I've watched his programs before.ÂÂ  Primarily because we've lost people to his teachings.ÂÂ  This guy is messed up big time.

Note that WHO Jesus is doesn't make the cut.  Soteriology isn't mentioned, nothing except the fact the Osteen is never wrong.  That's not Christianity, it's Osteeanity.
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« Reply #25 on: June 09, 2005, 01:09:21 PM »


Note that WHO Jesus is doesn't make the cut.ÂÂ  Soteriology isn't mentioned, nothing except the fact the Osteen is never wrong.ÂÂ  That's not Christianity, it's Osteeanity.
True.   Undecided
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« Reply #26 on: June 09, 2005, 01:17:54 PM »

I'm hesitant to say this precisely because I understand the subjectivity of the human experience and how it doesn't always mesh perfectly with objective reality...

You've made some good points. What I hope is that the seekers who visit his church will eventually long for something with a little more substance.
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« Reply #27 on: June 09, 2005, 01:33:44 PM »

Matt,

Some do.  But then, as I said above, he's also finding the uneducated Orthodox in our community and taking them, not that these folks were ever really active in our parish.  So the problem is that he also attracts Orthodox looking for less.
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« Reply #28 on: June 09, 2005, 02:31:38 PM »

cizinec,

Don't have a citation for you (as I saw this in a TV interview), but Osteen has publically said that creed was about the Bible.

Just FYI.

Also,

Matt's comment about "wearing Victoria's Secret for your husband and getting the best parking spaces at Bloomingdales" reminds me SOOOOO much of my days at ORU where none other than the First Lady of the university, Mrs. Lindsey Roberts, talked about how she would just pray for God to give her a good parking space, and if she got one, it was God's blessing.  Seriously...if neither you nor God have anything more pressing to deal with in your lives, then it's sad in your case and horrible in His.

There's a woman in our parish who's said in the past that she likes Osteen.  Tragic, though she was never taught any different--that and cultural differences might muddle the contrast.  Fortunately I think she's coming around (at least, I hope so) to some of the problems in Osteen's community cent- I mean church.
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« Reply #29 on: June 09, 2005, 03:14:02 PM »

Pedro,

I'm sure that's what he thinks he's teaching, just like we claim that's what we are teaching.

Quote
Today I will be taught the Word of God.

That's kind of hard to dance around.ÂÂ  If you asked him I'm sure he'd say, "I don't teach anything that's not in the Bible."ÂÂ  What he means is "I don't teach anything that's not my interpretation of the Bible."ÂÂ  

They play him almost all day here in Houston.ÂÂ  They look at him as being a "Pope" figure and he hasn't done much to shy away from it.
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« Reply #30 on: June 09, 2005, 03:24:34 PM »

I'm sure that's what he thinks he's teaching, just like we claim that's what we are teaching.

Right, but it doesn't make the creed "wrong."  He's at least TRYING to say we should "believe the Bible,"  whatever that ultimately turns out to be.  Would that we all ACTUALLY adhered to Scripture.
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« Reply #31 on: June 09, 2005, 03:26:29 PM »

He's misled but I still kind of like him. He's just so upbeat and positive...like Tony Robbins. 
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« Reply #32 on: June 09, 2005, 03:42:24 PM »

yo matthew,

u a brotha? Cause you certainly have a brother-ish avatar.

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« Reply #33 on: June 09, 2005, 03:49:56 PM »

Quote
He's misled but I still kind of like him. He's just so upbeat and positive...like Tony Robbins.

People that are always upbeat and positive kinda give me the creeps. It makes me wonder what's going on behind the scenes. It's not natural to always act that way in my opinion but maybe I could be wrong.  Cool

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« Reply #34 on: June 09, 2005, 04:33:51 PM »


There's a woman in our parish who's said in the past that she likes Osteen.ÂÂ  Tragic, though she was never taught any different--that and cultural differences might muddle the contrast.ÂÂ  Fortunately I think she's coming around (at least, I hope so) to some of the problems in Osteen's community cent- I mean church.

I think my grandpa listens to/watches him occasionally.  He's always been a baptisty type - all about the sermon and making you feel good.  I invited a bunch of those relatives over for a house blessing/house warming party.  I think they were confused and probably thought it was too "catholicy", but didn't say anything to me - just that it was "interesting".  Unfortunately, they aren't really seeking, so hard to draw them in - even w/ overt proselytizing.
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« Reply #35 on: June 09, 2005, 09:09:31 PM »

When all is said and done, I think I'd rather become a Tantric Hindu than espouse this type of Christianity.....at least it's more consistent.  (coptic orthodox boy: i think i like atman better than an-atman.....so not Buddhism)
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« Reply #36 on: June 10, 2005, 02:49:12 AM »

When all is said and done, I think I'd rather become a Tantric Hindu than espouse this type of Christianity.

Tantric spirituality is based on the glorification of sex, right? It wouldn't be that hard for a young man to commit to or believe in. Osteen spirituality, however flawed, seems to have more substance than that.

yo matthew,
u a brotha? Cause you certainly have a brother-ish avatar.

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15 And his feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace; and his voice as the sound of many waters.
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« Reply #37 on: June 10, 2005, 03:54:46 AM »

What I'm saying is: at least Tantric Hinduism lives at face value....at least it's honest.....

What Joel Osteen is doing is completely dishonest....he takes a religion, whose very core and substance is self-sacrifice and ego-less-ness, and twists it to his own liking; making it say something it isn't: that God "owes" it to you for you to live sumptuously......as if there weren't hundreds of Christians dying in the Sudan from starvation and persecution.....because obviously American Christians are SPECIAL (which I quite honestly think that most American "Christians" {notice the quotes} believe).

And Osteanity is all American-trash-culture schlock.....losing, as in all forms of Protestantism, any form of mystique or sense of mysticism....something which at least Hinduism keeps on some level.
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« Reply #38 on: June 10, 2005, 02:32:53 PM »

twists it to his own liking; making it say something it isn't: that God "owes" it to you for you to live sumptuously

I would not say that we deserve to live sumptuously. But to what extent can the favor of God improve one's life?
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« Reply #39 on: June 10, 2005, 03:28:41 PM »

Re: Is Joel Osteen a Word-of-Faith pastor?

 Huh I do not understand the question. What is a "Word-of-Faith pastor?" and what does it have to do with Orthodoxy?
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« Reply #40 on: June 10, 2005, 04:02:45 PM »

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What I'm saying is: at least Tantric Hinduism lives at face value....at least it's honest.....

What Joel Osteen is doing is completely dishonest....he takes a religion, whose very core and substance is self-sacrifice and ego-less-ness, and twists it to his own liking; making it say something it isn't: that God "owes" it to you for you to live sumptuously......as if there weren't hundreds of Christians dying in the Sudan from starvation and persecution.....because obviously American Christians are SPECIAL (which I quite honestly think that most American "Christians" {notice the quotes} believe).

And Osteanity is all American-trash-culture schlock.....losing, as in all forms of Protestantism, any form of mystique or sense of mysticism....something which at least Hinduism keeps on some level.

I totally agree. What you have described are the reasons why I almost gave up on christianity at one point in my life. I would rather be a zen budhist than a prostestant christian. I was so frustrated with it all that I just stopped going to church. I was so tired of the church being run like a business adventure. I was tired of stupid evangelicals acting very dum and fruity and tired of the whole protestant cabal in general. I started even mocking fellow evangelicals and called them on their fakeness. I was tired of the "comericalization" of the church and all the politics and struggle plays I always witnessed. Also tired of idiots telling me I was sinning by smoking cigars and drinking alcohol and other dum things I found very annoying. I even had some of them tell me that I was inviting demons into my house because I happened to have the book of Mormon & JW bible on my shelfs for strictly acedemic purposes. I just gave up and assumed there was no such thing as a true Christian church. Little did I realize I was about to begin on a journey where God finally led me to historic liturgical Christianity and then Orthodoxy. It was if the heavens opened up and the blinders were taken off. I had no idea that their was a "true" church out there until God led me and showed me his church! I feel like a baby that's just started on a big adventure and it will never end because his Church is filled with endless treasures!
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« Reply #41 on: June 10, 2005, 04:24:38 PM »

[quote author=Νικολάος Διάκονος link=topic=6358.msg82619#msg82619 date=1118431721]
What is a "Word-of-Faith pastor?" [/quote]

"The Word of Faith movement or word-faith theology developed in the latter half of the 20th century in mainly Pentecostal and Charismatic churches. Its beginnings trace back to an early twentieth century evangelical pastor, E.W. Kenyon (died 1948), who preached that God would award financial and other gifts if the faithful would ask. Kenyon coined the phrase, "What I confess, I possess." Kenneth E. Hagin is often credited with being the father of the modern Word of Faith movement, using a four-part formula he claimed to have received from Jesus: "Say it; do it; receive it; tell it."

Proponents of the doctrine include Kenneth Copeland, Creflo Dollar, Benny Hinn, Joel Osteen, and Marilyn Hickey, among others. They teach that Christians must claim the grace God has promised them, whether in material goods, health, social position, or roles within the church.

Detractors, such as Hank Hanegraaff and Norman Geisler, denounce word-faith theology as aberrant and contrary to the teachings of the Bible. Hanegraaff, among others, claims that this teaching goes against God's sovereignty and his prerogative to grant or deny what the praying one asks for. Word of Faith theologists counter that they believe the Bible is God's will and they are having faith in His Word.

Detractors and proponents alike acknowledge that word-faith theology finds echoes in the "prosperity gospel" often preached on the Trinity Broadcasting Network."
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Word_of_faith
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« Reply #42 on: June 10, 2005, 04:26:52 PM »

I just want to clarify in my last post that just because protestantism is filled with wholes and bad people doesn't mean that I think they are lost and going to hell. I feel that many of them do have a real relationship with Christ and usually the ones that are more honest would take a look at Orthodoxy and see that it is the true church. My conversion was actually not that hard because I already believed in the core tenets of the Christian faith.
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« Reply #43 on: June 10, 2005, 04:31:41 PM »

[quote author=Νικολάος Διάκονος link=topic=6358.msg82619#msg82619 date=1118431721]
 what does it have to do with Orthodoxy?
[/quote]

It has been noted in this thread that some Orthodox Christians may be attracted away from the faith to Osteen's glossy pseudo-spirituality.
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« Reply #44 on: June 11, 2005, 02:43:22 AM »

- Does Joel Osteen actually say anything religious of any kind during his sermons ? Sure, he starts with holding the Bible and during the program some verses, unrelated to the subject, appear at the bottom of the screen, but is there any relgious substance in the sermons ? The "be all you can be" and "I believe I can fly" sermons can be carried out by any charismatic speaker and does not need any knowledge.

- Joel Osteen, like Billy Graham, Joyce Meyers, Benny Henn (my favorite) and others are a marketing product that is distributed and brings in big money. The marketing techniques employed to elevate them to stardom is analogous to the tactics used in the making of a rapper or a pop singer. A raw talent, discovered , polished, trained, presented to the public targeting a certain group, and the revenues are shared.

- I do not have sympathy with Joel Osteen or his likes, for they turn away the people from repentence. I feel for the multitudes that follow him. It is sad to see so many people not able to discern the truth and falling for such crap.
« Last Edit: June 11, 2005, 02:45:05 AM by Stavro » Logged

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