Victoria Osteen is a Disgrace … Really? — by Jesse

Osteen_Quiroz

Joel and Victoria Osteen

There’s a lot of discussion brewing around Victoria Osteen’s recent comments made on the platform of Lakewood Church. If you don’t know who she is or what Lakewood Church is, let me just tell you. She is Joel Osteen’s wife, and together they pastor a congregation in Houston that draws nearly 40,000 people every weekend; it is the largest church in our country.

Check out the video that has stirred up some controversy:

Apparently someone recorded their TV with their phone, threw that Cosby clip on there and then posted it on social media. Now, that clip is being passed around like a hot potato. It is only a few days old, and that clip is quickly approaching one million views. Here’s what bothers me about it, and I’m not even sure if the word ‘bothers’ is the right word. It’s the perceived anger, hate and judgment that seem to be oozing out of Christians toward her.

Here are some of the comments I have seen: “Victoria Osteen is a DISGRACE to the name of Jesus!” “It’s about time this FRAUD was exposed for the humanism pill pushers that she and her husband are.” “I’m so thankful this clip has come out, God will JUDGE them for the poor representatives of Christ they truly are.”

Wow! Really?!

Now, I’m not agreeing with what she said – there are certainly things that she said that I don’t agree with – but for someone to say she (person/wife/mother/sinner/pastor) is a “DISGRACE” to the name of Christ is actually quite crazy to me. Maybe we have two different impressions on who Jesus is, but I don’t think He would call her a ‘DISGRACE.’ As a matter of fact, I don’t see him calling any of us a ‘DISGRACE,’ no matter what our mistake or sin may be.

He gives us GRACE, not DISGRACE, for the mistakes we make … which is what Victoria Osteen did; she made a mistake. Why can’t we acknowledge that WITHOUT calling into question her salvation, her ministry, her calling and her potential to be an effective minister to the church? Does that mistake give us the right to take her through the gauntlet of our verbal slams, criticisms and some of it is frankly hate speech?

As a public speaker, I know that sometimes you just say STUPID things in a moment where you frankly get lost and with people looking at you, you feel pushed to just keep words coming out of your mouth. And before you know it, you’ve said something very very very STUPID! I’ve done it, and EVERYONE who regularly speaks in front of other humans has done it, too.

In looking at that clip with grace, (instead of disgrace) I get what she could have been trying to say. She could have been trying to say that CHURCH is not about GOD ALONE, that God is not interested in coming into this building to be here alone. HE IS HERE BECAUSE WE ARE HERE (Matthew 18:20). The church is about GOD CONNECTING WITH HUMANITY and HUMANITY CONNECTING WITH GOD. She could have been trying to correct mindsets that may believe that church is a place where you JUST come to make God happy…by telling people that God is really interested in making you happy too, He cares THAT much about us (Psalm 112:1; Romans 15:13).

I could go on and on. My point is, sometimes we know what we want to say, but when it is delivered, it comes out totally different. Something I’m sure we can all relate to. The fact of the matter is, everyone will have critics when you step into the light or sight of other people. But, man … the church can be a scary place to mess up today. It seems like criticism from Christians on social media has become so common that as a leader you can feel like Daniel in the lion’s den. I’m saddened by that.

I believe we are better than that. I believe we can make mistakes in the body of Christ and not be eaten alive by our own (Galatians 5:15). Again, not justifying what was said, but let’s have some grace for each other (Colossians 4:6). I believe our criticisms can come out from a place of love and prayer, yet still be promoting unity in the church (Ephesians 4:29) and true AGAPE LOVE toward brothers and sisters in Christ who make mistakes. As Christians, we’re dripping with the grace God gives us (Ephesians 2:8-9). I am a sinner who sins (1 John 1:8) and by God’s grace and kindness, I find my faults, I repent and become free (Romans 2:4). It just doesn’t make sense that we wouldn’t extend that same heart out to others who need it (1 Peter 4:10).

That’s my thought for the day. I pray it is received as it was intended to be written … gracefully.

Jesse

Friend Jesse on Facebook or follow him on twitter @JesseAQuiroz

Follow Journey Church on Twitter @Journey_MO

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5 thoughts on “Victoria Osteen is a Disgrace … Really? — by Jesse

  1. Jesse,

    I truly appreciate what you are trying to do here and would normally agree that we should give the benefit of the doubt. You’re right, we all get in front of people sometimes, feel pressured to keep speaking, and let some odd or unintelligent things come out of our mouths. However, the problem is a long (and I mean long) track record of backing up what she said in this video with professions of the same theology from the pulpit/stage. I don’t agree with the way some people spoke about her either but I do agree with the fact that it has been posted as a more blatant and clear example of the heresy the Osteens teach frequently, and like you said, to a whole heck of a lot of people. This may be what some people needed to see this ministry for what it is. I think we have to recognize that there is also grace in being exposed, and God may use this to a greater redemptive end. The fact of the matter is, in the case of the Osteens, there is plenty of proof to substantiate that this was not some nervous circumstantial speech, but something more akin to a Freudian slip. To put it in the terms of our Savior, “out of the abundance of the heart [her] mouth speaks” (Luke 6:45).

  2. You admit she made a mistake. I agree, she did. And if that was just one of a “few” mistakes her and her husband make, I’d still be of a forgiving and compassionate mind on them. BUT, that isn’t the case! They “consistently” omit, and outright refute basic orthodox teaching on the subject of sin and repentance. That, my friend, is not just a “simple” mistake. That, is a sign of a false teacher. They scratch “itching ears”. Finally, IF it was a simple mistake she made, WHY haven’t either of them confessed their error and repented?

  3. I completely agree with your thoughts here. In fact, I told a friend the same thing, that I think it just came out wrong. Like you, I don’t agree with the way it came across, but I don’t believe her intent was to deliver this the way it sounds. Thank you for standing up for a fellow believer because Jesus said it will be our love for each other that the world will know we are Jesus’ disciples.
    (John 13:35)

    I guess we could say that Peter was a huge disgrace to Jesus also when he denied even knowing Him. But look at all that Peter went on to do in the Name of Jesus. He became a bold and powerful minister of the gospel. Why? Because it’s actually our disqualifications that qualify us for God to show up in our lives. When we are weak, His strength shows up. (2 Corinthians 12:9) This creates a contrast that makes Him all the more visible in our lives so that others recognize Him and come to realize that we have been with Him. (Acts 4:13)

    God Bless

    • I question the validity of using Peter’s denial in your defense of the Osteens. In context, Peter was NOT a Pastor, not even a teacher of the Gospel at that time. He was still being “trained” to take on the role of Apostle. After being commissioned (at Pentecost) Peter, or any of the 12, never made any of the claims and mistakes that we hear consistently from the pulpit at Lakewood. Yes, God is strong where we are weak. However, teachers, Pastors, are held to a much greater standard and must be “beyond reproach” when speaking “in the name of our Lord”. I recognize the seriousness of this subject, false teaching is everywhere present just as Jesus and Paul warned. Sorry for being so stern in my response. I do pray you are blessed in Christ.

      • Hi Don, I completely agree with what you have said and the scriptural references that substantiate it. And much like you, I think they make too many of these mistakes and missteps.

        However, in my response, I was just making the point that if the Osteens were to turn from their “surface” approach of their faith, I believe they could still go on to do even more and reach more people through the power of God as we see Peter did. I believe they could turn things around by being less evasive about Jesus being the only way no matter what, and proclaiming His name more.
        That being said, I don’t believe it’s beneficial for the body of Christ or unbelievers when they see us tearing each other apart… John 13:35
        I believe it’s better to pray for them and trust God will deal with them accordingly.
        Thanks for taking interest in my comment 🙂
        God Bless you Don 🙂

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