I disagree with Joel Osteen, as portrayed in the November 4 Charisma News article entitled, "Joel Osteen: Barak Obama is a Christian." I hope you won't react to my thoughts until after you have read the brief article in the link. If you do, chances are yours will be an emotional reaction, and that, not being grounded in evidence, is worthless. However, informed with irrefutable evidence, you can evaluate what is said and proceed with godly wisdom.
I speak as a Canadian living legally in the USA, so I live daily within the American context and with awareness of that which I speak. Speaking in "religious" terms, if Obama is anything, he is a Politician. His religion is politics; his pursuit is power.
So, I repeat: I disagree with Joel Osteen! Both Osteen and Obama are "good" with words! But words, especially "politically motivated words spoken in pursuit of power over people" are deceptive and self-serving. This ability to use words to control and deceive is a tool in power-driven religion and politics. Those who have lost discernment are easy prey for political manipulation.
If a person professes to be a Christian, the good fruit of a biblical Christian lifestyle will be obvious. While words are easy, deeds reveal what is really in a person's heart. And out of the heart are the issues of life.
May we be informed and thereby alert enough to evaluate, with godly discernment, both the words and actions of these two "political" leaders who exercise such "power" over so many; Obama, in the secular world; Osteen, in the religious world.
Going forward, both men should remember that biblical living and salvation are about the very Person of the Lord Jesus and who He claimed to be and who He demonstrated Himself to be.
It really is time for the rest of us to get back to biblical basics and develop Holy Spirit discernment and a mind established in biblical truth.
Over the past 20 years or so, I have studied the popular Spiritual Formation Movement, the Contemplative Prayer Movement, Roman Catholic "Ecumenism," and other non-biblical movements that have invaded and infected the church, and I have noticed a severe loss of spiritual discernment among the practitioners of these movements. Joel is certainly displaying such traits!
May we all examine our ways in the light of biblical truth and be the healing, preserving expressions of the Creator and Savior. Jesus is Lord and He will prevail.
Psalm 67:1-2: "May God have mercy on us (because we know we need it!), and bless us (because without His blessing we have nothing to give!) and may He give us favor where we need it for His purposes (because we are not politically astute in manipulating people because we are called to walk uprightly and in the light!) SO THAT HIS WAYS may be known on earth and HIS SALVATION among all nations" (my paraphrase and prayer). SHALOM!
Susan Hyatt holds a Doctor of Ministry from the School of Divinity at Regent University and is the president of God's Word to Women whose website is www.godswordtowomen.org. She is also the author of several books, including the groundbreaking, In the Spirit We're Equal, temporarily out of print but available in the Kindle format from Amazon.
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