The Cheap Prosperity Gospel of Trump and Osteen

By Anthea Butler

Before it began to rain in Houston last week, the spectacularly wealthy pastor Joel Osteen could have opened up his megachurch to serve as a logistics center. He could have announced that evacuees were welcome to take shelter there when Hurricane Harvey landed. Instead he wrote tweets like “God’s got this” and “don’t drift into doubt and fear … stay anchored to hope.” Only a couple of his posts on Twitter offered “prayers.”

On Sunday, Mr. Osteen’s church announced that it was inaccessible because of “flooding.” But intrepid journalists proved otherwise. After Mr. Osteen was humiliated on social media, he finally opened the 16,800-seat church to the public on Tuesday. When asked about the delay, Mr. Osteen said that “the city didn’t ask us to become a shelter.”

President Trump, too, revealed his morally bankrupt soul during the storm when he said that he timed his pardon of the racist former sheriff Joe Arpaio to coincide with the hurricane’s landfall because he assumed that it would garner “far higher” TV ratings than usual. Mr. Trump did visit Texas, but there was apparently no mention of dead or displaced Texans, and no expressions of sympathy.

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7 COMMENTS

  1. Joel Osteen is an amazingly successful con artist who misappropriates the philosophy of Jesus of Nazareth and capitalises on the ignorance and greed of his “followers”.

  2. giggity #1
    Sep 3, 2017 at 9:21 am

    Joel Osteen is an amazingly successful con artist who misappropriates the philosophy of Jesus of Nazareth

    It’s a long-standing tradition, started by Saul of Tarsus and the Roman Bishop Athanasius of Alexandria!

    http://www.nationalgeographic.com/lostgospel/timeline_12.html

    St. Athanasius of Alexandria, Egypt, lived from about 293 to 373. He spent much of his life waging a theological battle with Arianism, the belief that Jesus, though the son of God, was inferior to God the Father.

    As a young theologian Athanasius took part in the Council of Nicea in 325. This meeting established an orthodoxy that proclaimed the equality of Jesus and God the Father as divine beings of the same substance.

    But in the succeeding decades changing tides of theological belief and church politics resulted in five different periods of exile for Athanasius, who was the bishop of Alexandria and an important Egyptian national figure as well as a religious leader. During one such banishment, secreted among hermetic monks of the Egyptian desert, he penned Discourses Against the Arians—his strongest indictment of Arianism and most precise description of orthodox Christian belief, as represented by the four New Testament Gospels.

    In 367 he decreed to all Egyptian Christians that the only texts they should regard as sacred were 27 Jewish and Christian books specifically listed by him.
    The works on that list comprise the New Testament as we know it today.

    Athanasius died shortly before his orthodox views gained the upper hand over Arianism at the Council of Constantinople in A.D. 381.

    Meanwhile alternative “Gospels” from other Christian sects which he rejected, keep turning up!

    Gospel of Mary Discovered Late Nineteenth Century

    Gospel of Peter Discovered A.D. 1886

    Nag ‘Hammadi Texts Discovered A.D. 1945

    Gospel of Thomas A.D. 1945

    Dead Sea Scrolls Found A.D. 1947

    Gospel of Judas Found 1970s

    Gospel of the Savior Recognized Late 1990s

    Gospel of Judas Restored and Translated A.D. 2006

    So preachers and bishops, have been making up their own versions of
    “philosophies of Jesus of Nazareth”, for quite a few centuries now!

  3. q

    Is it good?

    I do believe one of the greatest of his crimes is not the monopolism, managed decently by law, but Charity, that great disabler of building compassionate states and the reliable right to welfare without fickle and meddlesome intervention.

    Charity is the badge of goodness to cover the selfish. They have little right to feel good.

  4. Why does Almighty God permit a world where people even need charity ? Jesus can keep his ‘socialism’ i.e. giving stuff away. Instead let’s go for the real thing, each of us owns everything in common equally including the means of production and distribution. Unfortunately for the likes of uncharitable Joel Osteen, he will be one of those doing the giving. But he won’t starve, nor be put against a wall. His skills can perhaps be used to entertain people as a magician ?

  5. @OP – Before it began to rain in Houston last week, the spectacularly wealthy pastor Joel Osteen could have opened up his megachurch to serve as a logistics center.

    In educated parts of Europe, the marketing opportunities for mega-churches, are becoming distinctly limited!

    https://www.richarddawkins.net/2017/08/christians-are-using-emptythepews-to-explain-why-they-left-their-churches/#li-comment-225882

    Last year 53% of {UK} people described themselves as having “no religion”, in a survey of 2,942 adults by the National Centre for Social Research.

    Among those aged between 18 and 25, the proportion was higher at 71%.

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