Joel’s Spiritual Guard

Someone is unhinged if he opposes health and wealth. Who in his right mind would choose sickness and poverty, when Jesus came to deliver us from these scourges that the devil has afflicted on mankind? I have diagnosed the problem with the acronym ODS, Osteen Derangement Syndrome.

Whereas most people are cheered by seeing a smiling face, especially when things may not be going their way, people afflicted with ODA are soured by our smiley pastor, Joel Osteen. They even oppose his lovely wife.

I am going to reveal something to trusted FB friends. Please keep this information to yourself. We don’t want this widely known. I am Joel Osteen’s spiritual guard. Some preachers are in need of bodyguards but Joel needs a spiritual guard because he refuses to defend himself against his spiritual enemies. Someone has to do the dirty work. Joel has not asked me to do this, because he has a love for his enemies that goes beyond most of us.

Joel is too valuable in the Kingdom of God for his friends to allow his enemies to constantly malign his character and misrepresent his teaching and vainly attempt to destroy his ministry. Hard telling what misinformation (Joel would not want me using the L word) ODS people will perpetuate concerning this man and his angelic guards. After all, these people are not (hopefully) willing slanderers; they have a mental disorder, perhaps soured by personal rejection.

I ask those that I am confiding in to pray for me. For the zeal of God’s house (Lakewood Church) hath eaten me up; and the reproaches of them that reproached Joel are fallen upon me (Psalm 69:9). Men have actually warned me that I am fallen and threatened me with for Hell for my role as Chief Guard of the house that Osteen built from what was originally a professional basketball arena of all things. Look what faith in God has wrought!

Joel is under attack from the wolves trying to tear down the sheepfold and scatter the sheep. Many of them do not even have a sheepfold of their own, which may be part of their problem.

One street witness minister insisted that I invite Joel out to minister with me in the marketplace. Lakewood Church is in the center of the business district of Houston. Joel doesn’t have to go outside like most of us evangelicals, he has up to 40 to 50 thousand eagerly entering into his gates weekly and usually a few hundred taking a stand for salvation at each service.

Who would not prefer the hardwood and cushioned seats of Compaq Center over the sawdust and benches of a tent? Perhaps someone afflicted with ODS?

Remember if you have any signs of this syndrome, Joel is ready and willing to help. I must warn you there is strong security at Lakewood. Who know what someone with ODS might actually do, although they are not known to be physically dangerous.

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Be the Head and Not the Tail

The greatest criticism of Joel Osteen is his wealth. There is no sin in gaining riches legitimately.

I suspect that a large portion of Osteen’s critics are in debt as a result of living beyond their means, which the Bible warns against. Others may be on the public dole, which means they are living on money forcibly taken from others. Both of these type criticizers tend to develop a victim mentality and are tail wagers. Osteen is a victor, who holds his head high. Selfish people resent his success. Right thinking people look upon him as a motivator.

Romans 13:8 exhorts, “Owe no one anything except to love one another, for he who loves another has fulfilled the law.” Proverbs 22:7 teaches that “The rich rules over the poor, and the borrower is the servant or slave of the lender.”

Some, like Osteen, are benevolently rich; others are selfishly rich and will attempt to keep the poor in a state of poverty and dependence upon the state. Osteen teaches men how to prosper and be independent from the government and the greedy (filthy) rich. Osteen removes the debtors’ excuse to be in debt and in a state of poverty.

Some of the rich and poor serve mammon; others from these classes have mammon serve them as they serve God. As men are diligent in service and stewardship to God and others in a relatively free economy, they should not be debtors or poor for long.

A free economy rewards those who are providing goods and services at a price people are willing to pay. As for Joel Osteen, he offers the inspiration for men to become achievers and live up to their full potential in service to God and their fellows. Not only that, his encouragement is freely offered! The thankful should reward him in return.


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Psalms and the Prosperity Gospel

I am beginning a study of Psalms in my home Bible Lessons. Psalm 1 sets the stage for all the psalms with the opening word “Blessed,” which is one of the most used words in this ancient hymn book.

God desires is to bless and prosper his people, which is “the prosperity gospel,” which I preach. I am not ashamed to use the term, even though it is has become a pejorative by those who would belittle those who teach that the righteous can expect to prosper (vs. 4) in the here and the hereafter.

The word “woe” is not found in Psalms, although it is implied that the ungodly are under a curse and they will not prosper over the long run but will perish.

In my Christian studies I have majored in the blessings of the gospel; however, I also have a minor in the afflictions of the gospel.

Joel Osteen teaches that God may even afflict us for a time in order to take us to higher ground. So, in the end even our afflictions are blessings, if we continue steadfast in the faith.

Obedient Christian, your season is at hand to bring forth abundant fruit as you hold unwavering unto the Lord. The winnowing is in process; the chaff is being separated from the wheat.

Join us Face Book live at 7 AM ET for the start of our study of Psalm. I promise that you will be blessed as you study and apply the principles of faith found in the treasures of Psalms.

An Falsehood is Not Necessarily a Lie

We need to be gracious and respectful towards our theological opponents by tempering our language. It is not necessary to say that our opponents’ views are “lies” unless their position is to intentionally deceive. Willful deceit is what makes a lie, not a false belief among those diligently attempting to understand doctrinal issues argued by Christians throughout the church age.

The chief priests bribed the Roman soldiers guarding Jesus’ tomb to say that his disciples came at night and stole the body. This was a deliberate attempt of deception for the purpose of denying the key doctrine of Christianity. This was an out and out lie and a grievous sin on the part of the religious leaders.

The two main schools of theology among Protestants are Calvinism and Arminianism; there is a third position called Moral Government. Advocates of one school sometimes label those of the other school with pejorative terms like liars, heretics or false prophets. These derogatory labels tend to hinder or even halt thoughtful and respectful dialogue and debate and can hamper us in promoting understanding or arriving at the truth.


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Revisiting Home Church in Columbia

On Sunday morning, May 5, Brother Frank and I visited Missouri United Methodist Church, which was our church home the nine years we lived in Columbia. It was the first time I returned to the Church, since moving back home to Terre Haute, Indiana, six years ago. Sister Cindy was not with me since she is visiting her mother in Georgia.

One thing about Methodism is that it is a constant. Methodist people tend to stick with their church; they are not church hoppers. I saw and chatted with numerous members with whom I was friendly during our Columbia years, including a few retired ministers. Sadly, I did miss some happy faces who are no longer in this world. They must have an even more joyful countenance now.

We attended “Seekers Class,” which for most of the time during our tenure was taught by two retired Methodist ministers, Dick and Otto. Both of these dynamic gentlemen were liberal theologically and socially but always allowed for open classroom discussion.

Dick and I regularly met for coffee during those years where we talked over our differences; we became good friends. Some around the church referred to us as “the Odd Couple.” Both of these men are now passed. Today we studied the parable of the Workers in the Vineyard. Cindy and I always had a good time during the week talking about the different views of those within the class.

Those whom might think Methodists are dead, should have been in the service the morning which featured, “Joy and Jazz Sunday” with a group of musicians called, Tim Whitmer Consort. One thing about Missouri United Methodist Church, the church always had highly trained and professional music. I am partial towards choirs over praise and worship groups.

Unfortunately, the preacher did not preach today because of the special music but from his comments he seemed to be a man full of the Holy Spirit.

MUMC is a beautiful Gothic building built in the 1920’s. I am partial to vaulted ceilings and stained-glass windows. The church is just down the block from Speakers’ Circle, where I upheld the doctrine of Christ crucified and resurrected at the University of Missouri as our flagship campus. Brother Frank and I will be holding forth there again through Thursday afternoon.

It was a wonderful morning. Sister Cindy and I have pleasant memories from our Columbia days, which for me mainly centered around MUMC. Sister Cindy was active in the community and headed the social activities of our home school group. During those years, I was on the gospel road much of the time so I was happy to have the roots and stability which a good church has to offer.

Those whom have difficulty finding a home church, I have trouble understanding. I have been in many churches over the years, that I believe that I could be at home. Of course, there are frustrations wherever one might attend. But is this not the case with family life and the work place? The responsible man does not change his family or walk away from his job; neither should he shun the church. It is easy to live the Christian life privately; the challenge is living for God in community


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Why is Joel Osteen Despised?

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Brother Frank and I arrived at Lakewood about 10 AM for the 11 AM service on January 20, 2019. What a blessing it was to see thousands of Christians in downtown Houston coming to church on Sunday morning. We introduced ourselves at the information booth and we were immediately given VIP treatment by the lady who serves as Director of Missions. She encouraged us to get into Pastor Joel’s reception line as the 8:30 service was just dismissing.

I told Joel that I visited the old church with Holy Hubert Lindsey back in the late 70’s and early 80’s. I forgot to mention Norval Hayes. Joel remembered Holy Hubert. He greeted everyone warmly and demonstrated a sincere interest in his visitors. Pastors were standing by to pray for any requests as there wasn’t time for Joel to do so. A pastor prayed for our Texas mission to the campuses.

Brother Frank agreed with me that we should take advantage of everything the church had to offer. Therefore, we attended the Communion service and one of the associate pastors gave a short message urging believers to not be content to be ordinary but to move in the supernatural as the disciples did when they passed the loaves and fishes which Jesus had blessed to the multitude.

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The director of missions personally escorted us to the third row, which was included in the roped off section at the front of the church. We sat two rows behind Pastor Joel. The congregation entered into a dynamic time of worship. Anyone was invited forward for prayer, Brother Frank and I accepted the offer at the altar, which took about 10 minutes of the service. A sister prayed an anointed prayer over me.

Joel’s sister took up the offering with no attempt at pressure to give. Joel’s brother, Paul, gave an exhortation about winning soul’s and especially believing God for the salvation of our family members. A man, who grew up in the church but fell into deep sin, gave his testimony of returning to the Lord. Paul introduced an old couple who were the first youth pastors of the church back when Lakewood got started 60 years ago.

Joel preached one of the best messages I have heard him preach. His theme was that God wanted to demonstrate in a miraculous way to the unbelieving world that God’s grace was upon us all. God will give ordinary people the power to do the extraordinary in public for everyone to see.

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Joel illustrated his point with the story of David and Goliath, the three young Hebrews thrown in the fiery furnace and Elijah calling fire down from heaven. Each miracle put fear in the hearts of unbelievers. David was treated with respect by his family members after killing the giant. Seeing the Hebrews saved from the fire, Nebuchadnezzar lifted the youths out of the pit and promoted them to high office, decreeing that anyone who spoke against their god should be torn limb from limb. The fire from heaven which Elijah called down even consumed the rocks. Then the people cried out, “The LORD, he is the God; the LORD, he is the God.”

Joel knows how to tell these Old Testament stories in a lively manner and teaches how the lessons may be applied to our everyday lives. Joel also gave two New Testament examples supporting his thesis. Anyone who claims that Joel doesn’t preach the Bible does not know what he is talking about.

Joel never misses a beat when he preaches, no hem hawing around in the pulpit. After the sermon, he gave an at five-minute altar call for repentance and faith in the Lord Jesus. Dozens in our section stood as Joel led them in a sinner’s prayer.

Brother Frank and I went to the book store. Meanwhile, another long line formed in the lobby to meet our good pastor. We left the building at 1:15, Joel was still greeting guests. Afterward, his practice is to go to the editing room to edit his message for television. There was a Spanish speaking service at 2 PM and a youth service at night. There is a lot going on at Lakewood beside what people see on TV.

There was ethnic, racial and, I assume, economic diversity in the congregation. No big deal is ever made of this. It is natural, (or maybe I should say spiritual) to people discipled by Brother Osteen. We experienced a considerable amount of friendliness. It was an lovely time of worship and teaching and fellowship.

Why Joel has so many critics can only be attributed to ignorance, immaturity or, I fear, envy. Hopefully, not much of the latter, among those who name the name of Christ. Joel is like Trump in that he is either loved or hated.

What is perplexing is that he is despised by so many Christians. Most of whom have probably never heard one of his sermons but have judged him by sound bites cherry picked by his foes, usually not even from his sermons but television interviews where Joel usually does not speak at forthrightly as he does from his pulpit. Joel has his reasons, for this I am sure, for he is a smart man, far shrewder than the ones interviewing him or criticizing him.

The above is just some of the highlights of our morning, every minute of the three hours we spent at the church was blessed. Lakewood’s challenge in the new years is to take “new ground.”

So, watch out! You have not seen anything yet from “America’s Pastor,” who is reaching the world out of Houston, TX. He plays a big role in MAGA.

By the way, President Trump likes Joel Osteen. They both think big! What else would you expect from a Texan? Or for that matter, according to Joel, what else would you expect from any committed Christian with faith the size of a mustard seed.

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Gideon’s 300

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As the 300 listened to the Bible Study at Lakewood Church on financial freedom, I was reminded of Gideon’s 300.

The Midianites had been terrorizing Israel for seven years with an army of 135,000. Gideon only had 32,000 men but that was way too many for God. God continually had Gideon cut his army until he only had 300 warriors who lapped, putting their hand to the mouth when drinking from the river. The ones who lapped were always battle ready as opposed to those who stuck their faces in the water.

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I observe Joel closely; he runs a tight ship and watches with an eagle’s eye over his congregation of 52,000 thousand. Those who came to the Bible study were drinking of the water of life from the Bible but they are also people who pray and watch. We must have both to defeat the Midianites of our time.

Gideon’s 300 advanced against the enemy with merely trumpets, pitchers and lamps. But they advanced in faith, not in numbers, but faith in their LORD and their captain, Gideon. When they shouted, “The sword of the Lord and Gideon,” the Midianites fled in fear and started fighting one another.

In the case of the Lakewood’s 300 the cry is, “The Word of the Lord and Joel.” Watch the church possess “new ground” in 2019 with this battle cry.

My thoughts were confirmed by the prostitute giving me the note about another Judge and Deliverer, Ehud.

Joel is God’s man in Texas to MAGA. Joel’s not sitting around waiting to be raptured, nor is he a keyboard warrior criticizing others who do the work of the Lord differently. Daily he faces the enemy appearing to be as harmless as a dove to his detractors, but in reality, he is as wise as a serpent. Men who look upon the outward appearance see only the dove, but God and men who look at the heart see Joel as wise warrior.

A Joel detractor on one of my threads asked me what am I trying to prove in my writings on Joel. I am attempting to get men to see Joel as God sees him, a man whom God is using to revive his generation by giving them a vision to accomplish great exploits for God. Those lapping the water understand. The critics who bow down their knees as they drink fail to recognize Joel as a comrade at arms, who is doing the Lord’s work.

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Go Get It

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One can learn more about a church from its mid-week service (if they even have one) than from the main show, which is on Sunday. This is the reason I watched and listened to Pastor John Gray, who speaks each Wednesday night at Lakewood Church in Houston. He is a middle-aged black Pentecostal preacher, old school (though dressed mod) with the usual oratorical skills of the race. When Joel hired him to build up this service, the mid-week service had about 2000 to 2500; his preaching had brought it up to 11,000.

Pastor Gray opened by reminding the congregation that it was 20 years ago today, that founding pastor John Osteen passed to his reward. “We honor him tonight.” The widow, Doty Osteen, was in the service looking young, pretty and healthy. In 1981, she was diagnosed with terminal cancer with only months to live but the family relied on God’s report of life and health, not the doctors’ diagnosis of disease and death. After all these years, Doty remains a big player in the prayer squad at Lakewood.

The title of Pastor Gray’s message was, “GO GET IT!” His text was the healing of the lame man at the pool of Bethesda. He urged the people to do “their part’ if they are going to possess the promises of God. “Rise up for God’s glory; it is not a about you. Move and move now. Bethesda is here; the pool is here, here at Lakewood.”

He cautioned the congregation not to be too critical of the man, who had waited 38 years for his deliverance. He said, “At least he was by the pool. At least he was in church. He may not have had it all together but he was in the right place.” Most men never even get close enough to the water, which symbolizes the word of God, the truth. The pool also represents the church and the anointing oil by the elders.

“We always are asking God questions about why this happens or why something is not happening, putting all the responsibility on God. In this case God asks the question, ‘Wilt thou be made whole?’ In other words, Jesus was asking, ‘How bad do you want it?’ Jesus did not even bother to ask the man, ‘What is wrong with you?’ Nor did he tell him to get in the water. The miracle was not in the water; the miracle was in his heart and mouth. Nor did Jesus ask, ‘Do you want me to make you well.’”
Jesus just commanded the impotent man, “Rise, take up your bed and walk!”

“Men are often content to be partially free. To be completely free; we have to take personal responsibility. Misery loves company. Often people seek the company of other complainers and murmurers. The miserables will resent it, when one of their company rises out of the bed of affliction and walks away from their wretchedness, because it is evidence that they too can be made whole. But in reality, they don’t want to pay the price of wholeness. Don’t be satisfied with a partial healing or answer to prayer. Be made every whit whole!”

“God blesses when his reputation is at stake. He put his reputation on the line when he commanded the impotent man, ‘Rise up and walk!’”

Pastor Gray gave three point for receiving from God, whether it be healing, a job, a calling, a spouse, salvation, a financial need, etc.:
1. Eliminate distractions
2. Elevate determination, “It is my time; it is my turn. ‘PRESS toward the mark of the prize.’ His Word will come to pass.”
3. Eradicate doubt.

The Hebrew spies make the mistake of seeing themselves as grasshoppers instead of warriors and then they had the audacity to come back and speak to Moses that they were mere grasshopper instead of members of the army of the living God.

“Do something! Put on a suit even if you have no place to go. You are not going to get the job if you don’t apply for the job. ‘Faith without works is dead.’“

“The BLOOD of Jesus sets free!” shouted Pastor Gray. Joel’s critics tell me that Joel never mentions the blood, which is another point of misinformation. He preaches salvation through the blood (suffering and death of Christ).

The Osteens are actually in many respects old fashion; Lakewood, for a mega church, is about as close as you will get to “the old-time religion” with a flair of the new. For God loves to do a new work! Lakewood is Pentecostal, which may be the rub against his fundamentalist critics.

Three more points by Pastor Gray:
1. See what God sees; 2. Think what God thinks; 3. Speak what God Speaks.

“Death and life are in the power of the tongue.”—Proverbs 18:21

“SPEAK LIFE, GO GET IT!” At the conclusion of his sermon, he had the congregation chatting, “GO GET IT!”

“Start clapping! Clapping shifts the atmosphere.” We often need to shift the atmosphere as did the lame man, when he took up his bed and walked. Be careful that you do not allow doubters and naysayers to be your circle of friends.

As happens at virtually every service at Lakewood, Pastor Gray gave an altar call. Among the crowd, which looked to be as large as the Sunday AM service we attended, many people stood confessing their faith.

Pastor instructed them, “Go to the New Beginnings room where there will be cake, cookies and refreshing drinks. No, I am only kidding; there will be none of that stuff there, just people who care and the Holy Ghost. You will get a free Bible and answers to any questions or additional prayer.”

Lakewood teaches men to take responsibility, which may be why so many oppose Joel. Some expect God to do everything.


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Eusebius, Father of Church History, Against Original Sin

Eusebius (260-340), widely known as the father of church history, believed that men were sinners by their own free choice and not by the necessity of their natures.


Eusebius taught, “The Creator of all things has impressed a natural law upon the soul of every man, as an assistant and ally in his conduct, pointing out to him the right way by this law; but, by the free liberty with which he is endowed, making the choice of what is best worthy of praise and acceptance, because he has acted rightly, not by force, but from his own free-will, when he had it in his power to act otherwise, As, again, making him who chooses what is worst, deserving of blame and punishment, as having by his own motion neglected the natural law, and becoming the origin and fountain of wickedness, and misusing himself, not from any extraneous necessity, but from free will and judgment. The fault is in him who chooses, not in God. For God has not made nature or the substance of the soul bad; for he who is good can make nothing but what is good. Everything is good which is according to nature. Every rational soul has naturally a good free-will, formed for the choice of what is good. But when a man acts wrongly, nature is not to be blamed; for what is wrong, takes place not according to nature, but contrary to nature, it being the work of choice, and not of nature.”–The Christian Examiner, Volume One, published by James Miller, 1824 Edition, p. 66

Thus, Eusebius confirms that the doctrine of original sin, or an inherited sinful nature did not come into prominence until Augustine (354-440), who developed his doctrine in his controversy with Pelagius (360-418), who was defender of the historical, traditional, rational, intuitive, and scriptural view of free-will, which was the prevailing view of the church until Augustine.


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Why do they hate Joel?

In keeping with the teachings of Jesus and his apostles, Joel Osteen demands excellence and diligence and opposes mediocrity and slothfulness. Many believers wallow in the mire of mediocrity; instead of showing initiative, they oppose Joel’s teachings on the old fashion virtues of profit and industry.

Uninformed Christians accuse Joel of not preaching against sin. The fact is that Joel preaches against sins of the heart, which other ministers tend to ignore. Traditionally, sloth has been regarded as one of the seven deadly or cardinal sins. Few of Joel’s detractors have the energy and smarts that he has to build the Kingdom of God on earth.

Joel’s messages from Lakewood Church in Houston are broadcast world-wide 24/7 via TV and series radio. He has been a best-selling author of books written to encourage men to do great things for God and their fellows. Instead of appreciating his challenging teachings, they demean him by referring to him nor as preacher or pastor, but merely as a “motivational speaker.”

A number of my businessmen friends have told me over the years that they prefer not to hire Christians, because the Christian employee tends to have an entitlement mentality; he thinks that his employer ought to overlook his tardiness and laziness. They expect to be rewarded for their Jesus’ talk more than their productive work. Other Christians are content to be on the dole year after year.

What is behind all the unjust criticism of Joel Osteen? I suspect that Joel’s teachings, personal diligence and success convicts the slackers of their own shortcomings and sins with which they have learned to be content and which they are not interested in changing. The problem is not Joel but their envy of Joel and their lack of faith to do great exploits for God.