Friday, January 4, 2008

Joel Olsteen On Larry King Live - Dec 26th

I feel that perhaps my criticism of Joel can be at times a bit harsh, and one sided. I think Joel says some good things; they are just few and far between.

So I will objectively ( as possible) point out the pro's and con's from his interview on Dec. 26th on Larry King Live. This is from

KING: Could an atheist be changed?

J. OSTEEN: I think so. I think...

KING: Without having to believe in God?

J. OSTEEN: Well, I think there's a void in every person that only God can fill -- that only God can fill. I think that's how you can really be fulfilled, truly. So I would think an atheist can be changed and their attitude in certain things. But I think if you come to a belief that there's something bigger than yourself, you're going to be more fulfilled.

My issue here is : that of course a person can be changed by the Word of God. But the Bible was not written to give you a better attitude, it was written so that we might be able to bring Glory to God, understand His character and nature, and so that we might receive Salvation.
KING: How do you react to the critics who call your message theology lite?

J. OSTEEN: Well, I've heard that before. It's interesting, Larry, every week in our services we deal with people that are -- have children that have cancer, people that have a husband or a wife that left them. We deal with the real issues of life. I talk about forgiveness and how to have faith when bad things happen and, you know, how to overcome and, you know, love your enemies and things like that.

So when they say it's gospel lite, I think, you know, we're helping people where the rubber meets the road.

I mean last Sunday, there was a little girl there. She was 2- years-old. She has cancer. She's at our MD Anderson Cancer Hospital.

And you know what?

We give them hope. We pray for them. We say God's going to give you strength. I mean we don't know exactly what the outcome is going to be. We hope they -- we hope she'll live.

But, you know, how can that be gospel lite to me?

That's why I come back to saying I'm helping people.
Where is SALVATION? honestly, this may sound harsh or even mean, but who cares about cancer in light of ETERNAL HELL?

If your right eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body be thrown into hell. And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body go into hell.
(Mat 5:29-30)

Does this make any sense? It is great to help people on earth, but it they don't have Jesus Christ as an atonement for their SINS it doesn't matter. It just doesn't matter.
KING: What's your notion of hell?

J. OSTEEN: Well, I believe hell is a real place. I think it's -- you know, the scripture talks about it's separation from God. And I think -- I believe if God as light and love and everything good, then hell's going to be everything bad. I mean we certainly do not want to go there and I don't think hell was designed for people.

KING: You think there's life after death?

J. OSTEEN: I do. I believe we're all going to live on, that we're a spirit. This body -- I like to think of it as just like my coat. There's something on the inside of me that's making this thing move. And I'm -- the real me is on the inside. So I do believe we'll live on.
Good Job Joel! While I don't agree with him on every word here, I love that he said hell is a real place and that people will go there. (that was implied). There is a heaven and a hell. Good Work.
KING: Do you minister to the poor?

J. OSTEEN: Oh, we do. We do.

We have outreaches in our church. We support local outreaches as well. I mean, that's what the gospel is all about, helping others that are less fortunate.
No sir, it's not. The Gospel is about Christ dying for the sin's we have committed so that we might be reconciled to God. Our treatment of the poor is simply a reflection of the gift that Christ has given to us. The Gospel is about Salvation, and bringing Glory to God for being so MERCIFUL.
KING: What's your reaction, though, when God gets a bad name? There has been more people killed by religion than any other thing.

J. OSTEEN: It's been going on for centuries. Well, it's just like you said, God gets a bad name, and there are -- I think there are extremists in any group.

And, you know, we're not for that. We're for loving our enemies and helping people. But, you know, I -- you can fault anything. But a lot of times, it's extremists.
Bad premise's lead to bad conclusions.

Hitler and Stalin combined killed more people then any other group somewhere in the 30 million range, but that seems a little low.

Even so, Christianity has very little as far as deaths are concerned. The inquisition. The Crusades which was more of a Iraq I style war then anything it was about freeing people...

So really the issue here is that this is a fallacious attack that is repeatedly made on Christianity and should be answered once and for all and shown to be false.

Atheism is responsible for more deaths then anything else.

Joel has some good and some bad, but I think we need to pray that God Almighty would teach him the truth of the Gospel.


Mrs. Sewell (Professional Wife and SAHM) said...

Great Blog Ken! Did you also hear that Joel Osteen said that Mormons are Christians on FOX news?! Matt Slick said something about it, so I did my research and saw the video! Man, this guy really is mixed up. I don't believe that all pastors should be required to attend a Bible College or Theological Seminary, but for Heaven's sake they should at least know the fundamental basics of Christian Theology and at least study on their own!

God Bless
Crystal <><

HiddenSquire said...

Wow... a follow-up post. Your lengthly responses in the comments of the last J. Olsteen one were enough. If nothing else, though, I guess you've doubly proven that you're making every effort to look at Joel as objectively as you know how. At this point, I think it's safe to conclude that he's not worth our time as far as further discussion goes.

Ken Cook said...

Crystal: I Got the transcript from the latest LKL where Joel talks about Mormons, and at a face value He is right, in that we shouldn't judge someone who confesses Christ as savior, but we should treat them as a brother. However, Mormons don't confess the Same Jesus. So really that is the issue that I have with what Joel Says here, especially for someone who has "studied it deeply."

KING: How do you feel about Mitt Romney and being a Mormon? Would that affect whether you vote for him or not?

J. OSTEEN: Well, you know what? I look at people, their character, their values, what they stand for. And I know only Mitt from watching him on your program and reading a couple of articles about him. And I don't think that that would affect me.

I've heard him say that he believes Jesus is his savior, just like I do. I've studied it deeply, and maybe people don't agree with me, but I like to look at a person's value and what they stand for.


I first started the post simply to write about how proud I was that Joel said that He believed in a literal Hell, as that was the only part of the show I had seen. So I started reading the transcript to find where it was so I could quote it correctly, but I found all the other stuff. It was personally quite frustrating to be looking for Good and find almost none.