Let me begin by saying I am not a fan of the Osteens but then again I have not attended their church or read any of their books. However, there are a few factors to consider prior to pointing any fingers declaring them to be heretical, false prophets or any such thing.
1. A Woman Caught in Adultery. In John Chapter 8 the scribes and Pharisees ganged up on a woman who had been caught in sin and threw her down at Jesus’ feet. Look at verse 7 closely. It says, “So when they continued to ask Jesus [about stoning her], He raised Himself up and said to them, “He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first.” What was Jesus’ response to the woman? She was guilty of the sin but what did He say in verse 11? I’ll tell you. Jesus said, “Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more.”
2. The Love Factor. First Corinthians 13:1 says, ‘Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal’ and verse 4, ‘love suffers long and is kind’. Hmm, are we speaking in love? Are we judging someone’s heart by a 2 minute video clip? Could Victoria Osteen have made a mistake? Have you ever made a mistake? I have. I have said some very dumb things in my life and words I regretted. I’ve pointed many fingers completely past the plank in my own eye, much to my own chagrin. How about you?
3. David and Saul. We can learn from them. David, a man after God’s own heart, refused to do any harm to King Saul, even though Saul was trying to kill him. David understood God had put Saul as king over Israel because that’s what the people wanted, a king and it was not David’s job to take Saul out, even though he could have.
In my opinion, the church of America is broken, powerless and ineffective because of all the backbiting, finger pointing judgment we insist upon doing to one another instead of loving our brothers with words of edification and exhortation. Maybe God put the Osteens in a place of leadership to judge our hearts when we see a video of something appearing inaccurate. I would hate for people to judge my whole life and career based on a few soundbites.
Now, lest anyone freak out believing I am saying the Osteens are innocent, let me make myself clear. I am not declaring guilt or innocent either way. What I won’t do is condemn because I don’t know the whole story. I don’t know if that video clip took something out of context. I don’t know what is in Victoria or Joel Osteen’s heart, only God does.
I only know that my heart still contains sin, I cannot throw a stone, I can only hope in the righteousness of Christ.
God loves Joel and Victoria Osteen just as much as He loves me or you, so how about we pray for them and repent for the times we judged anyone besides ourselves?
How about we pray for unity in the body of Christ?
As a Christ follower it is my responsibility to follow Christ: to go where the Father says to go, to do what the Father says to do, to say what the Father says to say.
That is all.
“Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, every one according to his ways,” says the Lord God. “Repent, and turn from all your transgressions, so that iniquity will not be your ruin. Ezekiel 18:30
“Judge not, and you shall not be judged. Condemn not, and you shall not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. Luke 6:37