Call To Die

Then [Jesus] said to them all, "If anyone wants to come with Me, he must deny himself, take up his cross daily, and follow Me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life because of Me will save it. (Luke 9:23-24, HCSB)

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Follower of Christ, husband of Abby, member of Kosmosdale Baptist Church, and tutor/staff member at Sayers Classical Academy.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Joel Osteen's strange science, strange theology


(Image from The Sacred Sandwich website.)

Recently, my uncle, Dr. Alan Branch, Vice President for Student Development at MidWestern Baptist Theological Seminary, has written an article on Joel Osteen titled, Joel Osteen's strange science, strange theology. As an entirely unbiased critic (well, maybe not quite...) I can assure everyone that this article is well worth the read, showing another aspect of Osteen's doctrine which tends toward the errors of the "Prosperity Gospel." For some time now, Alan has been warning congregations that Osteen's theology consistently tends toward this false interpretation of the Gospel, promoting unbiblical teaching in at least two ways:
  1. Advancing the idea that our words, in and of themselves, have supernatural power.
  2. Overemphasizing financial prosperity.
As Osteen is such an influential public figure (leader of the congregation with the largest average weekly attendance in the U.S., author of the bestseller, Your Best Life Now), I encourage everyone reading this to please read the article linked above and drop a comment concerning your thoughts on what it says. (Please don't leave a comment if you don't bother to read the article.)

3 Comments:

Blogger Nathan White said...

Andrew, I resent the fact that I have to read the article in order to leave a comment. This is a visual/post-modern age. I don't have an attention span long enough to read that article. Please adapt your style to the changing times. It's the 21st century for goodness sake. :)

Just kidding. I did read the article. And besides the Dobson quote that came up on the left sidebar, I enjoyed it. It is certainly ridiculous. But trying to form a doctrine off of scientific evidence and obscure tests is not only ridiculous, it speaks volumes for what Olsteen esteems as the source of his truth. I am recalling a MacArthur quote where he mentions that we should be able to listen to a preacher for 5 minutes and determine whether he is grounded in God’s word. Preaching is a presentation of sorts, in which the preacher is going to say whatever he thinks will get the best results or have the best impression on the crowd. If the preacher is grounded in the word and is faithfully convinced of God’s power through the word, then he will preach nothing but the word, and will thus prove that he believes the word has the best effect on the lives of the hearers.

But Olsteen has quite a following, and his people defend him adamantly. Want a good example? Check out Don Elbourne’s post on Olsteen, and all the arguments some use to defend him (way down in the comment section), found HERE.

SDG

12:46 AM  
Blogger ajlin said...

Nathan,

Thanks for the comment. One thing that really strikes me about the Elbourne post you linked to is that his original article was posted on Jan. 31, 2005 and the most recent comment was posted a couple of days ago- over a year and a half later- with comments consistently coming in every month. I have NEVER seen that before on the blog-o-sphere.

-Andrew

1:56 PM  
Blogger Modern Day Magi said...

Olsteen really is a long way past dodgy isnt he?

MDM

7:34 AM  

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