Osteen took the helm of Lakewood Church in 1999 upon the death of his father, John.John Osteen was openly a prosperity gospel preacher who founded Lakewood in 1959 and had built it into a 6000 member church before his son replaced him.What the reader will find in this best selling book is a mixture of common sense, helpful practical advice, and a multitude of success stories interlaced with a heavy dose of deceitful teaching. It is not so much that Osteen presents a false gospel (which he seems to do in ) but rather, no gospel at all.In a 300 page book which will be read by millions of unbelievers, the closest Osteen ever comes to the gospel is, “Work out your own salvation. It is constantly working with God, dealing with the issues He brings up and keeping a good attitude, fighting through until you win the victory.” What Osteen believes concerning the gospel is uncertain, but what is undeniable is that the emphasis of his ministry is maintaining a positive outlook on life rather than a right relationship with God.This is a message that appeals to the flesh of unbelievers and worldly- minded Christians and would account for the superstar status that Osteen now has. I am charging Joel Osteen with being a false teacher: a man who has twisted the gospel to entice the fallen nature of people, who has turned God into a genie, and who has distorted Scripture to present a warm and fuzzy yet warped form of Christianity.In order to see if I am correct or just being mean-spirited, we need to turn to Osteen’s actual words as found in .
This philosophy is the world’s, not God’s who consistently calls us to live for higher values than this world and self (John -17).Well-known personalities within the movement include Kenneth Hagin (deceased), Kenneth Copeland, Robert Tilton, Paul Yonggi Cho, Benny Hinn, Marilyn Hickey, Frederick Price, John Avanzini, Charles Capps, Jerry Savelle, Morris Cerullo, Joyce Meyer and Paul and Jan Crouch.As implied by the title “Word of Faith,” the supporters of this movement believe that faith works like a mighty power or force.The title of his first book, summarizes what Osteen has to offer his many audiences.If we will follow certain principles or steps (seven to be exact), so the storyline goes, our existence will be happy, healthy, and blessed with everything that would make this life wonderful.As we speak words of faith, power is discharged to accomplish our desires.