For popular American evangelist Joel Osteen, it does not matter what a person’s faith or religion might be—he will gladly open his arms in welcome to anyone who wishes to visit his Lakewood Church in Houston, Texas. This open-hearted approach is probably the reason why Osteen appeals to so many people, including Muslims. During a recent radio interview with Jeremy Hobson of Here and Now, Osteen shared that he has developed an excellent relationship with people of different faiths and that he actually sells a lot of his books in Muslim countries. “I have Muslims that attend our church, and my books sell a lot in Muslim countries as well,” he said. “You know, I don’t know, I don’t get too deep in those kinds of things, but our ministry is about reaching out to everybody, and so I do and I do have those conversations. I had a whole group of probably about 50 Muslims here at the service about two weeks ago, sitting right on the front row. They came, and we have good, good relations.” Osteen noted that God teaches Christians to love their neighbours as much as they love themselves, and this is a huge part of his ministry. “I don’t try to put people in a box,” he said. “Okay, they’re Jewish or they’re Catholic, they’re this or they’re that. I just say, ‘you know what, they’re somebody that God’s put in our path for us to love,’ and that’s our philosophy.” Ilsa M. Klein, a proud Jewish woman wrote in the Jewish Journal that she cannot help but respect and appreciate Osteen despite their different beliefs because he was able to “put his finger on the pulse of my current challenges, and offered comments that gave me some degree of immediate solace.” “He does not proselytise in a loud, Bible-thumping sort of manner. Instead, with a calming, reassuring voice, he delivers words of faith, hope and optimism based on a biblical foundation,” Klein wrote.


Christian Today