Victoria Osteen’s comments on obedience to God have got her in hot water with some in the Christian community, with some even calling it blasphemous.
Osteen, co-pastor of Lakewood Church in Houston with her husband Joel, made the comments during a church service that has recently found its way to YouTube.
In the video above, Victoria Osteen’s comments about why congregants come to church laid the groundwork for the controversy lighting up the Internet and Christian message boards.
“I just want to encourage every one of us to realize when we obey God, we’re not doing it for God—I mean, that’s one way to look at it — we’re doing it for ourselves, because God takes pleasure when we’re happy. That’s the thing that gives Him the greatest joy.
“So, I want you to know this morning: Just do good for your own self. Do good because God wants you to be happy. When you come to church, when you worship Him, you’re not doing it for God really. You’re doing it for yourself, because that’s what makes God happy. Amen?”
Victoria Osteen’s comments drew near-immediate scorn in an Aug. 28 post on Christian News Network‘s website, with a theologian pointing out what he said were differences in Osteen’s comments and what the Bible says about worshiping and obeying God.
“Steve Camp, pastor of The Cross Church in Palm City, Florida and former singer/songwriter, told Christian News Network that he viewed the video on Wednesday, and while saddened, he was not surprised at her remarks. He stated that Osteen’s statements were humanistic in nature and antithetical to Scripture.
“… He said that Osteen’s words were essentially blasphemous because they disregard God’s holiness and the way that He is to be worshiped.
“‘She honestly believes that God exists to make us happy rather than holy,’ Camp lamented. ‘She honestly believes that worship is about our fulfillment rather than His glory. That’s the bottom issue here.’
“But he outlined that Scripture commands man to be selflessly abandon themselves to Christ and to not worry about their own lives.
“‘1 Corinthians so clearly says that whether we eat or drink, do it all to the glory of God. It’s not just self,’ Camp stated. ‘Jesus said … in Matthew 16, “Deny yourself, take up your cross and follow Me.”‘”
The controversy about Victoria Osteen’s comments are just the latest controversy to envelop the mega church pastors from Houston. It was just in June that Joel Osteeen was defending himself and the church from accusations that they believed in teaching known as the “prosperity gospel,” which essentially says God wants His followers to be wealthy.
[Image via Flickr Creative Commons]