Megachuch pastor Joel Osteen dodges CNN questions on homosexuality
September 27, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Texas Megachurch Pastor Joel Osteen squirmed under a barrage of question about his beliefs on homosexuality during a discussion on CNN’s “Talking points with Soledad O’Brien” last Thursday.
The conversation began as a discussion between Osteen and New Age self-help guru Deepak Chopra about the importance of positive thinking, but then abruptly turned to homosexuality.
“Almost every time we have a pastor on, it’s a conversation we have,” CNN host O’Brien explained to Osteen.
“I always wonder when you say homosexuality is a sin and there’s a bunch of people who clearly are gay who are in your church,” she continued. “You’re calling them sinners. I mean, that is the opposite of uplifting, I would think.”
“Well, Soledad, I don’t necessarily focus on that. I only talk about that in the interviews,” Osteen replied.
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When asked if he thought he had an important voice to lend to the public debate about homosexuality, Osteen answered, “I think part of my, if you want to call it success, I’ve stayed in my lane and my lane is lifting people’s spirits and there are issues that good, Bible-believing people see on both sides of the fence.”
However, when O’Brien suggested point blank that Osteen would say Scripture condemns homosexuality as a sin, Osteen responded, “exactly.”
“When I read the scripture, that’s what I believe, that the scripture condemns it or says it’s a sin,” Osteen said. “It also says, you know, lying it and being prideful is.”
Osteen was then asked by panelist and gay rights activist Richard Socarides whether he had chosen to be heterosexual. Osteen replied that he had not, adding, “I don’t understand all those issues and so, you know, I try to stick on the issues that I do understand. I know this. I’m for everybody. I’m not for pushing people down.”
Osteen’s performance earned him the ire of Albert Mohler Jr., president of Southern Baptist Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky, who wrote that while O’Brien had “established the perfect platform for Osteen to respond with the gospel of Jesus Christ,” Osteen “did not.”
“Viewers of CNN saw a display of confusion, evasion, and equivocation coming from one presented as a Christian pastor,” charged Mohler. “What they were really seeing is the total theological bankruptcy of the word of faith movement and the gospel of positive thinking.
“Osteen cannot, or at least will not, speak even the simplest word of biblical conviction. He states his intention to stay in his ‘lane’ of glib affirmation.”