Posted by: Damon Whitsell | April 12, 2013

OPEN DISCUSSION: My Interview with “THE JOEL OSTEEN LEFT CHRISTIANITY HOAX” creator Justin Tribble

justin timber

Having a Google Alert for Joel Osteen I have followed the so called “JOEL OSTEEN LEFT CHRISTIANITY HOAX” since I got this first post about it from Yahoo Answers. I was very glad the creator, of what he now calls a “Media Campaign” came out and said he did it to open up a discussion and I was very happy he agreed to be interviewed by myself and to answer some questions that I think the readers of our groupblog might want to ask him.

His name is Justin Tribble and he is Freelance writer from Minnesota who said to Mr. Osteen directly in a message to Joel on Tuesday April 9th.

A message to Joel, from the so-called “hoaxer”

“I am the person who created the Joel Osteen “resigns” hoax that resulted in dozens of media stories, TV segments, a million hits in one day on the hoaxed sites alone, 500 frantic phone calls to the Lakewood Church and managed to cause Joel to smile even bigger than usual.

I did it because I wanted to get this guy’s attention and get him to wake up. “Wake up? Wake up to what?” you say? Allow me to explain…

I have to ask, What would Christ want? Bibles… or Joel Osteen’s fifteen books?

What would Christ want? A pastor who takes risks, or instead molds his message in such a way so as to justify his lavish lifestyle?

It’s time to get real, Joel. It’s time to put the “feel good”, “prosperity gospel” message and all the platitudes and cliches aside for a second and get serious about real issues.

You should be held to a higher standard — but nobody is holding you to that standard.

I am begging of you, start talking about the *real* issues in this world and take a good look at yourself in the mirror. Get serious. Take some risks. Get out of the insulated Lakewood social circle full of sycophants who agree with you on everything.

I’m not seeing you do much of anything other than flash that big, fat grin on TV.

I don’t see you taking risks or talking about real, pressing issues of the day — whether it be Monsanto and their GMO poisons, Obama’s traitorous signing of the NDAA and support of drones, the toxic fluoride in our water, the materialistic, consumer based culture we live in that is so dysfunctional it’s placed the U.S. number one in the world in mental illness rates.

We’ve got the highest rates of cancer, heart disease and diabetes in the world, and not a single person is asking, “Why?” Why aren’t *you* asking why, Joel?

I thought you were supposed to be a “teacher”? As far as I’m concerned, you’re the “McDonald’s” version of preachers — feels good to down a big soda, until the heartburn sets in. Telling people what they want to hear isn’t helping anyone, but it’s sure getting *you* rich.

This is a viral campaign designed to get the attention of a man who is incredibly powerful and wouldn’t otherwise likely even listen to me. I hope, hope, hope he wakes up a little and starts informing his flock about what’s really going on in the world and delves into some deeper issues. That’s his job, his duty, as a messenger of the Lord”.

http://christianitynewstexas.blogspot.com/2013/04/megachurch-pastor-joel-osten-annouces.html

Here is also a video of Justin’s interview.

With that I start the interview.

Hi Justin, Thanks so much for agreeing to do this interview. I guess the first question I would like to ask of you is one of a motive question.

Question #1 — Your “hoax” plan was pretty elaborate, deliberate and seems to be well thought out. I can see in your message to Joel that you seem to be a fellow follower in Christ and interested in doctrinal purity and integrity, but is there any other reason than that for your motive to do this “Media Campaign” – perhaps your just wanting to Osteen to engage, rather that intentionally disengaging and avoiding, some of the more controversial issues within Christianity and living the Christian life? Or is your issue solely about doctrinal correctness?

“Unfortunately, having not had sleep for a day and a half, with media requests coming in, I took the opportunity to get on TV and try to get people thinking about this guy but I may have muddled my own message. I’m not sure it worked. I was tired and ended up being too charitable, appearing too much a “fan” of Osteen. Selective editing by ABC didn’t help.

All I want is for people to stop and think about what this guy is up to. The entire argument for why Osteen is great is that “he makes me feel good.” Ok. Cocaine makes you feel good, so does alcohol, sometimes excessive eating and many other things that are destructive in quantities other than extreme moderation.

Let me just put this scenario before you: imagine Satan wanted a pastor or preacher to rise to prominence. What would he want that guy to do or say? Well, he’d love it if that guy wrote fifteen books with his name and face on them, and profited handsomely from the sales. He’d love it if this guy spoke less and less from scripture, but instead formulated his own brand of “self-help” Christianity that has no basis in doctrine. He’d love it if that guy sold a feel-good brand of “faith” with an emphasis on acquiring money and good material fortune if you just “believe enough.” He’d love it if that guy had a $10 million dollar mansion and enjoyed a lavish lifestyle.

I can’t help but think Satan would love what Joel Osteen is doing.”

Question #2 — This one perhaps has to do with motives also. What kind of previous experience do you bring to the table of discussion about Osteens current “feel good, prosperity gospel message”. Meaning directly have you or anyone else you know been adversely or over affected by Oteen and the agreeably swallow message he teaches? We respect your need to keep personal people in your life anonymous and appreciate any general insight here.

“I have no personal experience. I’ve just been watching his ascension to the top for many years.”

Question #3 – Most of the bloggers and regulars readers at this blog are Ex-WoFers, people who are researching the Word of Faith Movement or people who have been generally adversely effected by the movement, are you aware of the movements distinctive teachings and their historical origins.

“I have to admit my ignorance on this subject. I’m interested to learn more.”

Question #4 – The most distinctive teaching of the Word of Faith Movement is it’s teaching on the “power of words” or “confession teaching”. In pejorative terms it is known as the “Name-it and-claim-it”,,, or,,, “blab-it and grab-it” doctrines. Are you familiar with this teaching? Every ex-WoFer I have ever met agrees that this teaching is the same as witchcraft, occult and new age doctrine. Instead of “confessing” or “declaring” the occult teaches these same things also know as Conjuring’s, Incantations and Spell Castings. Not knowing how much you know about the teaching I’ll go ahead and ask you to put your neck out a little further since you have already stuck it out this far and ask you,, do you see similarities between WoF power of words teaching and witchcraft?

“That sounds consistent to me. Is word of faith a part of the charismatic movement? Is Osteen’s “believe enough and you’ll get rich, too” similar to this?”

MY RESPONSE TO JUSTINS LAST COMMENTS – No brother, Joel Osteen and The Word of Faith Movement are not part of the Charismatic movement. I’m having problems staying connected to the internet today so for now I’ll give you links to two articles to read. Perhaps some of the readers here can fill you in more in the comment section.

Word of Faith Movement profile
http://www.watchman.org/profile/wordpro.htm

Here the largest Charismatic denomination has issued a position paper on the word of faith movements teaching on positive confession. These two articles should help you understand the difference for now. If someone does not respond better in the comment section I’ll post more about it when I am getting better internet connection.

THE BELIEVER AND POSITIVE CONFESSION: The Assemblies of God response to extremes in the Word Faith Movement

https://thewordonthewordoffaithinfoblog.com/2009/02/24/the-believer-and-positive-confession-the-assemblies-of-god-response-to-extremes-in-the-word-faith-movement/

Question #5 – One of our groupblog authors asked me to ask you this… Do you think “Jesus would have been crucified in the 1st place if He had preached like Osteen. Or would have any of the Apostles have been martyred if they had preached Osteen’s message?”

“What risk does Joel Osteen take in his teachings? None that I can discern. He’s safe. So, no.”

Question #6 – If you have two minutes to speak to Osteen one on one – what would you say or ask that have not already said?

“I would ask if him the Lord spoke to him and told him to leave all of his money behind and to live as Jesus, humbly, would he?

I don’t think there is much to say to him, however. It’s his followers who embolden him. He isn’t going to change. I see a man who is doing absolutely nothing to challenge himself or his followers, a man the Lord is not and has not tested … likely because he may not be a man of the Lord in the first place.”

Question #7 — If you have one minute to speak to all of Osteen followers one on one – what would you say that have not already said.

“Why are you reading Joel’s fifteen books and not the Bible? Why are you listening to Joel every week instead of reading the Bible and praying? Why do you rely on Joel to make you “feel good” instead of Jesus? Why do you rest on every word Joel says instead of every word Jesus said?”

Thanks so much for answering these questions for us Justin. As mentioned above this post will have open comments and I’m sure we can have more discussion on this over the next days of you wish.  I sure hope you answering these questions will help us all as we have some conversation about Joel and his teaching. We sure hope you accomplish your goals in this. Thanks allot Justin.

THE COMMENT SECTION IS OPEN.

Here are more post on this blog about Joel Osteen

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