It’s not about me

For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities – all things were created through him and for him.  – Colossians 1:16 ESV

One of the most important pieces of advice I received when I was a babe in the faith was – skim books claiming to be Christian – if they talk more about you than about God, put them down! Surprisingly, a lot of the so-called Prosperity Gospel books out there are the ones selling like hotcakes. Joel Osteen, ring a bell?

I almost fell for the message in Joel Osteen’s books. I devoured “Your Best Life Now” before I became a Christian. The writing style wasn’t preachy; it was very soothing to the unbeliever’s (read: my) lost soul.

A few months later, God gave me an irresistable invitation and pretty soon, I was looking for a bible-based church.

What a shocker that was! The first sermon I ever listened to practically threw a bucket of cold water on all of Joel Osteen’s teachings that wormed their way into my gullible heart.

Folks, go back to the bible. Nothing in there says choosing God’s way will lead you to material success in this life. If this were true, then why didn’t Paul make it big? The apostle Peter was burned at the cross! And what about Job?!!!

Please be very very careful.  A lot of books out there are deceiving!

Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone into the world. – 1 John 4:1 ESV

None will escape the wrath of God:

Every word of God proves true; he is a shield to those who take refuge in him.

Do not add to his words, lest he rebuke you and you be found a liar. – Proverbs 30:5-7 ESV

PS Just started re-reading The Purpose Driven Life by Rick Warren, and I am on Day 1. I’m so glad that RW is against the Prosperity Gospel!

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2 thoughts on “It’s not about me

  1. Right before Christmas of 2005, I was asked by my father what I thought about Joel Osteen. At the time, we didn’t have cable, so I didn’t know a lot about him. Briefly a year or two before, we had gotten a TV channel out of Birmingham; however, we had lost the signal after a couple of months. We were always getting ready for church while Joel was on, so I never really paid attention to him. However, I did remember my wife saying that she really liked him. He encourages me, she’d say! I purposed in my mind to ask for his book “Your Best Life Now” for Christmas.

    In the circles of believers that I associate with, there has been a tendency to dislike and criticize Joel and his teaching, and I just don’t get it. Since I have been a believer for 35 years, I understand that I’m not his target audience. Joel is attempting to reach beyond the boundaries of my Christian circles. He’s introducing Biblical concepts to unreached people showing them how life changing God’s Word really is.

    Most secular people no longer believe that God’s Word is in reality God’s Word. I think Joel Osteen is teaching Biblical principles to show the practically of God’s Word. When he does that, he opens their eyes to the message of Christ.
    Joel passes these three scriptural test.

    1. I John 4:6. Openly declares his belief in God’s Word.
    2. Roman 10:9-10. Openly confesses the Lordship of Jesus Christ.
    3. I John 5:1. Passes the love test between believers.

    Personally, I would rank “Your Best Life Now” by Joel Osteen alongside Rick Warren’s “The Purpose Driven Church” and “The Purpose Driven Life.” It’s that important of a book. Furthermore, I like to watch Joel Osteen each week and hear him preach. From my point of view, his teaching is likened to the dessert after my main meal. My personal preference is more in depth meat and potatoes teaching; however, I like to top off my meal with a little bit of encouragement from Joel Osteen. May God bless Joel Osteen and his ministry!

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