Slate Osteen Article

If you know me, you know I'm not a huge fan of Joel Osteen, despite his popularity.  I think his brand of religion is harmful in a number of ways and perverts just about everything Jesus is about.  It seems Christians often exist at two extremes: we either criticize everybody, or criticize nobody.  Or, we criticize for stupid things, or won't criticize for anything.  Here's an article from Slate, written as best I can tell by a non-Christian who still seems to understand the message of Jesus a lot better than Osteen.  Here's an excerpt:

There's, of course, nothing inherently suspect or dishonorable about seeking uplift and consolation in the Bible. But the point of those "deep theological doctrines" that Osteen seems to deride is to leaven that quest with the less agreeable features of life—pain and suffering, the persistence of evil, the fleeting quality of all endeavor, the cosmic insignificance of the human self, let alone that self's subordinate chosen modes of expression in body posture or a near-pathological penchant for smiling. After all, the same Bible that Lakewood's arena full of believers champion as a handbook for what they can do and be also contains these words, in Revelation 3:17: "Thou sayest, I am rich and increased with goods, and have need of nothing: and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked."

ht: internet monk

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