So, I never thought I’d write a post defending Joel Osteen…
But, seriously, the floodgates of media unleashed against Joel Osteen, based on an unclear church statement and fanned by agenda-driven social media, tells me that we have a cultural problem. The fact that many Christians have joined in shows me it is a Christian problem. It’s wrong in both cases, but disturbing to see some Christians joining in.
It seems some Christians hate Joel Osteen more than they love the truth. I’d expect that from the world, but I hoped for better in the church.
So we are clear, Osteen and I are not on the same page theologically. And I have serious problems with the prosperity gospel. Furthermore, his platitudes and lifestyle have not helped in this moment.
But do we have to join the deluge of hatred toward him for what is a questionable situation—at best?
In other words, I get some people are upset about Osteen’s theology and approach to his work. But why are so many Christians joining in on spreading a false narrative about his actions in Houston?
Ed Stetzer holds the Billy Graham Distinguished Chair of Church, Mission, and Evangelism at Wheaton College, is Executive Director of the Billy Graham Center, and publishes church leadership resources through Mission Group.