By John Brentlinger
1. How You Look is More Important Than What You Say
Appearance is everything. The GQ look in suits, shirts and ties; the suave manner of speaking and gesturing; the co-pastor, errr, wife, is that in the Bible, right? Co-pastor? Isn't it in there right after it says, "If a man (man) desire the office of a bishop..." It's not? Really?
Joel Osteen is merely a gummed up country fried steak, turned by his own ego into a TV dinner gospel: a lot of plastic and no nutrients. But he's got the look man, its the look. Youth, the golf tan, and the hair, John Edwards would pay $600 for that haircut. (Speaking of plastic guys.) It shouts, "I am relevant, I am young, I am hip and I appeal to the TV generation -- ergo - I must be doing something
right! Check me out - I mean, have you seen me? Whoever said it gets lonely at the top obviously doesn't know me!"
2. If you don't take a stand on anything, you can fill a football stadium.
A glib tongue, a cool appearance, the neutrality on every issue, oh wait, is this Barry Soetoro Davis, the self proclaimed light of the world? Oh no, that's the
other plastic guy, sorry. Anyway, the blasphemy of never taking a stand on anything, does away with most of the Bible, well, all the Bible, but apparently
Joel isn't worried about that?
Can you see Joel Osteen as David? "Hey Goliath, I got some wine, got some cheese, lets sit down and talk about this deal. I'm sure the god of the Philistines
is the God of Judah, bring your peeps and lets have church."
How about Joel Osteen as Elijah, with the prophets of Baal? "Hey guys, whats up? Look, I don't want to argue, I think we both want the same thing. What say we just marinate these ox and get on with the picnic?" Maybe 40,000 people bowing down to Joel, sorry, meant Baal, just might not be the answer either.
Oh well, maybe that thing about "strait is the gate and narrow is the way" is for some other, smaller church.
3. Everybody goin' to Heaven
You know, if you never read the Bible; if you never heard of the Bible; if you never heard that the Son of God came to earth as a man and died on a cross for
sinners, and that faith in his atonement is necessary for entrance into the kingdom of heaven; then you might just believe that heaven is for everyone, that
believers and unbelievers will share the same eternal presence with God. If you never saw a Bible I guess you would have some tiny reason for being spiritually
ignorant -- but if you actually carry a Bible to the pulpit and open it -- and you still think everyone is a Christian, this is not merely stupid, this is galactically stupid.
4. If you pass the plate to 40,000 people, you can really rake in the cash.
And, when you hit up 40,000 people for a lot of money, you can talk about the prosperity gospel, you know, that's where you're supposed to give as much as you
can to the Osteen Family Enterprise (daddie's church, remember?) and you will receive so many blessings in money and things, you won't have room for them all,
so, you'll have to have a bigger house, newer car, bigger barns -- oh wait, maybe that's not in the Bible either.
5. It does not matter what you believe --just believe something.
There comes a time when everyone of us must give an account of what we have done, and especially to those who teach others, and especially those who are
supposed to teach biblical truth to others, there is something in the Bible about that, yes, I'm sure I've read it; something like, "My brethren, many of you
should not become teachers, knowing that we shall receive stricter judgement." Yes, that's it. You know, maybe this 40,000 person stadium filler, TV, say
nothing book thing is not really a good thing, in the long run.
Wonder what John the Baptist would have thunk?
Can you see Osteen as John the Baptist? "Hey ya'll, don't ya'll worry about that repentance thang, ya'all'll be just fine. If you feel like repenting you
can, but its not really necessary."
Wonder what Jesus thinks? Oh wait, that's in the Bible too.