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Section 10A .. The Contemporary Church/
The Prosperity and Word of Faith Doctrines

003white  Section 10A The Contemporary Church     >    Doctrines of Demons       >    The Prosperity Doctrine - WOF VI


Chapter VI - Joel Osteen - The Blind Leading The Blind

The Mind Blowing Parallels Between Osteen, Napolean Hill, and Norman Vincent Peale’s Doctrines

Carol Brooks

    All Nine Chapters - Index and Summary

    Chapter 1 -  Introduction To The Prosperity and The Word-Faith Gospels. HERE
    Chapter 2 - Alleged Biblical Support For The Prosperity Doctrine. HERE
    Chapter 3 - The Never Mentioned Verses. HERE
    Chapter 4 - Uninformed People in The Scriptures?
    Chapter 5 - The Word of Faith Doctrine and New Thought. HERE
    Chapter 6 - Joel Osteen - The Blind Leading The Blind.
    Chapter 7 - How Words Precede Form. HERE
    Chapter 8 - God and Money. HERE
    Chapter 9 - The Crown Without The Cross? HERE

    Joel Osteen - The Blind Leading The Blind
    We were given only one sure guide by which to recognize whether the hands that beckon us are God-sent to save us, or are reaching out from the depths of hell to devour us. Yet we resolutely continue to ignore God's chosen guide book preferring instead to flock to one of the innumerable dog and pony shows that Joel Osteen (and numerous others) put on.

    See Entertainment - The New Way of Doing Church
    and The Rise of The Mile Wide And Inch Deep Flashy Megachurch

    Hundreds of thousands continue to devour the bilge he puts out in his books - all written in the name of God. After reading so many of his statements that do not find their origin in Scripture I have to wonder what Bible this man reads, or whether he even reads one.

    Lets start with the fact that not only are their doctrines indistinguishable from each other but, as shown in the previous chapter Osteen uses a particular phrase that was one of Napoleon Hill's hallmark expressions. In fact, Norman Vincent Peale also used exactly the same expression...

    See more about these two and the occult origins of their doctrines in the Previous Chapter

    Conceive And Believe

      Napoleon Hill
      What the mind of man can conceive and believe, It can achieve. [01]. Note: He used this phrase many times. In fact, it was his hallmark expression.

      Norman Vincent Peale.
      "Whatever your mind can conceive and believe, and your heart desire, you can achieve" [02]

      Joel Osteen
      "... the first step to living at your full potential is to enlarge your vision... you must start looking at life through eyes of faith, seeing yourself rising to new levels. See your business taking off. See your marriage restored. See your family prospering. See your dreams coming to pass. You must conceive it and believe it is possible if you ever hope to experience it. [03]

    It is simply impossible that it was an 'coincidence' that three men used exactly the same phrase in teaching exactly the same methodology to achieve what ones heart desires. 

    The seeds of Osteen's theology were probably sown when he attended Oral Roberts University in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Oral Roberts (1918 – 2009) is considered one of the forerunners of the charismatic movement and one of the first to teach the Prosperity Gospel and the 'seed-faith' concept. (Incidentally, Roberts claimed to have had a vision from a 900-foot-tall Jesus who told him to build City of Faith Medical and Research Center that would be a success)

    More About "Seed-faith" and Oral Roberts


    Joel Osteen and Norman Vincent Peale.
    An October 21, 2005 article By Tatiana Morales on CBS News.com refers to an appearance Osteen made on The Early Show on which co-anchor Harry Smith compared Osteen's preaching to Norman Vincent Peale's, and Osteen agreed.

      "It's amazing," Osteen said. "I was preaching two or three years when someone gave me one of his books. I was going to say, 'He thinks like me.' I think like him. It seems like it's the same base there. God is on our side and if you think right, I believe, like Norman Vincent Peale did, that your life follows your thoughts. You get up negative, oppressive, your day will go that way." [04]

    Osteen response "It's amazing" and "it seems like it's the same base there" express a measure of surprise that was nothing but pure hypocrisy considering he had very recently finished reading one of Peale’s books and in fact had written Your Best Life Now very soon after. Take a look at the time line.

      Joel Osteen succeeded his father as pastor of Lakewood Church on October 3, 1999 prior to which he had apparently only preached once in his life... the week before his father's death. If as he said, he had only been preaching for two or three years when someone gave him a copy of one of Peale's books, it was put in his hands in 2001 or 2002.

      His first book, Your Best Life Now: 7 Steps to Living at Your Full Potential, was released in October 2004, just two or three short years after he read Peale's book. The fact that, as shown above, it included Peale and Hill's conceive and believe expression shows how influenced Osteen is by these occultists. 

    The one thing Joel that you got right - You do think like Peale and you and he are on the same page. Both of you have identical teachings from exactly the same source. As the author of the book of Ecclesiastes said.. "there is nothing new under the sun". Satan pulls down an old dusty heresy from off the shelf, gives it a spit shine, ties a red bow on top and hands it back to man with a flourish. And man? ... man not only swallows it hook, line and sinker but does his (or her) best to spread it as far as possible.

    Osteen's Version of Luke 1:20.
    Osteen claims that our words are so powerful that they can even put a road block in God's plans. He claims that when the angel announced the the birth of John the Baptist to his father, he (the angel) had to stop Zacharias' mouth to keep him from thwarting God's plan by negative statements. (Emphasis Added)

      [Zacharias] was so surprised because he and his wife Elizabeth were well up there in years. He said to the angel, "Are you really sure this is going to happen? Do you see how old we are? I just don't think this could be possible." … The angel went on to say "But, Zacharias, because you didn't believe, because you questioned God, you shall remain silent and not be able to speak until the baby is born." … Well, why did God shut his mouth?… He knew Zacharias would go out and start talking to his friends. "Well, they said we're gonna have a baby, but they must have gotten the wrong person. Man, we're way too old!" See, God knows the power of our words. He knows we prophesy our future, and He knew Zacharias' own negative words would stop His plan. [05]

    Osteen is so busy imposing his own ideas onto the text that he has completely disregarded the fact that, without any ambiguity whatsoever the only reason given for Zacharias' temporary loss of speech was because he did not believe what the angel told him. The text says absolutely NOTHING about Zacharias' negative words stopping God's plan. 

      "And behold, you shall be silent and unable to speak until the day when these things take place, because you did not believe my words, which will be fulfilled in their proper time." (Luke 1:20 NASB)

    The "Creative Power of Words"
    In his book Become a Better You Osteen says

      "One of the best ways that we can improve our self-image is with our words. Words are like seeds. They have creative power. It says in Isaiah that 'We will eat the fruit of our words.' That's amazing when you stop to consider that truth: Our words tend to produce what we're saying. Every day we should make positive declarations over our lives. We should say things such as, 'I am blessed. I am prosperous. I am healthy. I am talented. I am creative. I am wise.' When we do that, we are building up our self-image.

      As those words permeate your heart and mind, and especially your subconscious mind, eventually they will begin to change the way you see yourself. The Scripture says 'With our tongue, we can either bless our life or we can curse our life.' (Osteen is referring to James 3:10) Some individuals curse their own future by saying things such as 'I don't have what it takes. I'm so clumsy I can't get anything right. I'm so undisciplined. I'll probably never lose this weight.' We must be extremely careful what we allow out of our mouth. Our words set the direction for our lives." [06]

    I would very much like to know where exactly Isaiah made any mention of us eating the fruit of our words. The closest result of a search was ... 

      Say to the righteous that it will go well with them, For they will eat the fruit of their actions. (Isaiah 3:10 NASB)

    Osteen and Proverbs 18:21
    In another book, Osteen attributes the eating the fruit of our words to the book of Proverbs. (Emphasis Added)

      "If you're in a storm today, now more than ever you need to guard what you say and not allow any negative, destructive words to come out of your mouth. Scripture says, 'Death and life are in the power of the tongue; and you will eat the fruit thereof.' (Proverbs 18:21) In other words, you create an environment for either good or evil with your words, and you are going to have to live in that world you've created. If you're always murmuring, complaining, and talking about how bad life is treating you, you're going to live in a pretty miserable, depressing world. You may be tempted to merely use your words to describe negative situations, but God wants us to use our words to change our negative situations. Don't talk about the problem, talk about the solution." [07]

    Osteen interprets the underlined words to mean we "create an environment for either good or evil" with our words.

    Perhaps he should have checked the exact meaning of the words first. The word Death cannot be interpreted, as Osteen implies, to mean "a pretty miserable, depressing world" that you create and are going to have to live in. "Death" is translated from the Hebrew word māveth that literally means stone cold, bury as soon as possible dead. It has been used that way over 150 times in the Old Testament. For example

      It came about after the death (Gr. māveth) of Abraham, that God blessed his son Isaac; and Isaac lived by Beer-lahai-roi. (Genesis 25:11 NASB)

      The Lord struck the king, so that he was a leper to the day of his death (Gr. māveth) . And he lived in a separate house, while Jotham the king's son was over the household, judging the people of the land. (2 Kings 15:5 NASB)

      Then he blinded the eyes of Zedekiah; and the king of Babylon bound him with bronze fetters and brought him to Babylon and put him in prison until the day of his death (Gr. māveth) . (Jeremiah 52:11 NASB)

    Contrary to Joel's inventive interpretation Proverbs 18:21 says nothing different from what Jesus or Luke said i.e. judgment on the last day will be according to a man's words that indicate the state of his heart.

      But I tell you that every careless word that people speak, they shall give an accounting for it in the day of judgment. "For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned." (Matthew 12:35-37 NASB)

      "The good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth what is good; and the evil man out of the evil treasure brings forth what is evil; for his mouth speaks from that which fills his heart.  (Luke 6:45 NASB)

    As a tree is known by it's fruit, the heart is known by the words that proceed out of the mouth. True, proper, chaste, instructive words indicate the heart is right, while false, envious, malignant, and impious words indicate the heart is wrong. which is why the Bible teaches that eternity can depends on a person's words. In other words - life and death are in the power of the tongue.

    Osteen and James 3:10
    Another Bible verse Osteen refers to is James 3:10 of which he says

      "With our tongue, we can either bless our life or we can curse our life". [08]

    But this is nowhere near the words nor intent of the verse which says -  in context, (See Context is CRUCIAL)

       (7) For every species of beasts and birds, of reptiles and creatures of the sea, is tamed and has been tamed by the human race. (8)  But no one can tame the tongue; it is a restless evil and full of deadly poison. (9)  With it we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in the likeness of God; (10) from the same mouth come both blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not to be this way. (11) Does a fountain send out from the same opening both fresh and bitter water?  (12)  Can a fig tree, my brethren, produce olives, or a vine produce figs? Nor can salt water produce fresh. James 3:7-12 NASB

    It is well to remember that the third chapter of James begins with a warning to aspiring teachers (verses that Joel Osteen, among many others, have not taken seriously enough) pointingout that the mouth that praises and glorifies God should not be used to curse. Our speech is an indicator of the condition of our heart and when there is inconsistent speech - when blessings and curses come out of the same mouth .. something is wrong.

    The book of James is straight talk on the practical side of being a Christian. He was encouraging the early Christians to live what they said they believed, since anyone can claim to be a Christian. Or as many today would express it ... walk the walk rather than just talk the talk. (James 2:14)

    This verse has absolutely NOTHING to do with being able to bless or curse our lives as Osteen claims. Read the entire chapter for yourself.

    Osteen and Romans 12:1-2
    Like all other false teachers Osteen is not above using part of a verse to make the point he wants to get across. However, reading the context of the words Joel quotes throws a whole different light on the matter. The context makes the author's intent very clear and it isn't anywhere near what Osteen claims. (See Context is CRUCIAL)

    In Your Best Life Now, Osteen wrote

    "What are you doing? You are reprogramming your mind... Learn to dwell upon the good, reprogram your thinking. The Bible tells us that we need to be 'transformed by the renewing of our mind.' If you will transform your mind, God will transform your life... Our thoughts contain tremendous power." [09]

    Osteen is referring to the first two verses of Romans 12. In the first eleven chapters (the doctrinal part of Romans), Paul built a detailed defense of God's plan of salvation and how it included both Jew and Gentile. Chapter 12 marks a distinct transition from the doctrinal to the practical. It opens with the word "therefore" which indicates that what Paul is about to say is based on the foundation already laid in chapters 1-11.

      Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual (Gr. logikos) service of worship. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect. (Romans 12:1-2 NASB)

      Note: The words rendered spiritual is the Greek logikos that means rational or logical.

    Built on the foundation of his teaching in chapters 1-11 Paul tells his readers that giving themselves completely to God is eminently reasonable in light of what God had done for them. In fact, the Christian faith is a commitment to God. It is life changing and life defining.

    Paul's words in verses 1 and 2 of Chapter 12 are an call or plea to these new Christians to commit themselves to a radically change in their (and our) thinking, behaving, and values.  He urges believers to actively choose to offer their bodies as living sacrifices ... a metaphor taken from the Old Testament sacrifices offered on the altar that from then on belonged to God.

    The gospel and repentance are two sides of the same coin. In English repent means to feel or express sincere remorse or contrition for one's past wrongdoing. As evinced by the many calls to repentance in the Old Testament repentance was a call to return to God and keep His commandments - a turning around.

    See Repentance - The Missing Message

    Similarly, the Greek word metanoeo rendered repent or repentance in the New Testament indicates a fundamental change in thinking that leads to a fundamental change in behavior/way of living. As Paul explained, a total transformation has to be effected by the renewing of your mind.

      These new Christians were not to conform to the pattern of the world, but were to be transformed by the renewing of their minds. (The Greek word for "be transformed" is metamorphoõ the source of the English metamorphosis, usually associated with the change a caterpillar makes into a butterfly).

    In other words, they had to learn to think and behave differently from the world.

    Osteen's 10.5 million Dollar Home
    A July 2010 article in Houston's Daily Digital Magazine, CultureMap, says that although Osteen hasn't drawn a salary from the church since 2005. His "income comes from best-selling books and related products, such as calendars, daybooks and inspirational pamphlets".

    They added that  (Emphasis Added)

      "Several months ago, the couple and their children moved to a 17,000-square-foot stone mansion in the Tall Timbers subdivision in River Oaks. The Osteens' new home is situated on 1.86 acres and surrounded by an ornamental fence. The 411: It has six bedrooms, six bathrooms, three elevators and five wood-burning fireplaces, with a one-bedroom guest house and pool house. The Harris County Appraisal District valued it at $10.5 million...

      The Tanglewood house is owned by Joel and Victoria Osteen according to Harris County Appraisal District records. The River Oaks home is technically owned by the Covenant Trust, which means the Osteens do not qualify for a homestead exemption on it. They will pay around $260,000 in property taxes on the new home this year. [10]

    Just like so many others, Joel Osteen got very rich peddling concepts from the occult world. See Section On Him in Lifestyles Of Celebrity Pastors


    Continue On To Chapter 7 -How Words Precede Form The problem is that Napoleon Hill's principles or "magic formula" actually seems to work. This was testified to by men such as United States Presidents Theodore Roosevelt, Harding, Wilson, and Taft, plus some of the world's greatest scientists and founders of America's leading corporations. In fact, ever since Hill first put pen to paper, his principles and techniques have been taught, in one form or the other, by every motivational speaker/ life coach on the planet... with often successful results. In fact, the non-believing world can, by learning and applying certain principles, match or even exceed, the gain that "Christian" ministers promise.

    This unsettling parallel should raise very disturbing questions in the mind of any discerning believer - There are only two choices. Either matter can be manipulated by the words a person speaks or an intelligent force hears these words then does what it takes to make them a reality.. HERE

    End Notes - Chapter 6
    [01] Napoleon Hill and Clement W Stone. (1937). Think and Grow Rich. Chicago, Illinois: Combined Registry Company. Pg 14

    [02] Norman Vincent Peale. Positive Imaging: The Powerful Way to Change Your Life. Publisher: Ballantine Books; Reissue edition (August 27, 1996).

    [03] Joel Osteen. Your Best Life Now 7 Steps to Living at Your Full Potential. Publisher: Warner Faith (October 12, 2004) Pg. 4. A
    lso see Page 6

    [04] Tatiana Morales. CBS News. Joel Osteen: God Is On Your Side... https://www.cbsnews.com/news/osteen-god-is-on-your-side/

    [05] Joel Osteen, Discover the Champion in You, TBN, May 3rd. 2004. As quoted in Christianity Still In Crisis: A Word Of Faith Update by Bob Hunter. www.equip.org/PDF/JAW455.pdf

    [06] Joel Osteen. 7 Keys to Improving Your Life Every Day. Free Press; (2009) paperback. Pgs 109-110

    [07] Joel Osteen. Your Best Life Now. 7 Steps to Living at Your Full Potential. Pg. 124. FaithWords (August 20, 2007)

    [08] Joel Osteen Become a Better You: 7 Keys to Improving Your Life Every Day. Page 110. Simon and Schuster, 2007

    [09] Joel Osteen. Your Best Life Now. 7 Steps to Living at Your Full Potential. Pgs. 108, 109. FaithWords (August 20, 2007)

    [10] Clifford Pugh. July 2010. After move to $10.5 million River Oaks mansion, Joel Osteen offers Tanglewood land for $1.1 million. http://houston.culturemap.com/news/real-estate/07-04-10-after-move-to-river-oaks-joel-osteen-wants-to-sell-tanglewood-land-for-11-million/#slide=0


    Return To  Chapter 5 - New Thought