Saturday, 11 July 2009

Christianity Lite?

I have a confession to make. I watched Joel Osteen speak at the Hillsong Conference. And...wait for it...I liked much of what he had to say.

One comment stuck out. He told how he is often criticised for preaching Christianity lite. Then he told of someone in his church who said she'd had forty years of Christianity heavy and she'd take Christianity lite any day.

Something there to reflect on I think.


Graeme said...

its important to confess your sins to one another but to do it in an open arena can be dangerous, ;-)

I must also agree I used to listen to some of his stuff(I can't watch because his smile annoys me) however I wouldn't say that he preaches as he almost never as far as I've heard ,call people to repentance! If it was all about thinking positive thoughts then yeah I've heard it before did he do the "This is my Bible." thing?

as to Christianity Lite? I'm not sure whats meant by that, if he means grace should be taught more then he is probably right! just don't try and replace Jesus with heart-warming stories about how people can feel better! as good as some of that its not what we are called to spread, Jesus Lived, Died, and was buried and then rose again :-) so yes we can have Joy! but lets keep it all about Jesus.
not about positive thinking ways to get a parking space etc!!

sorry for the rant, also can you point me to the hillsongs conference teaching

Werewolf Dude said...

Is there a Diet and Caffiene Free Christianity as well?

On a more serious note what is the difference between lite and heavy Christianity?

As long as the true message manages to reach people does it really matter how it is preached, weiter lite or heavy?

What style would you say you preach in James?

James said...

Thanks for your comments guys. Osteen has his critics. I'm probably not familiar enough with his ministry to say very much - and I don't really need to!

I think the point was probably more to do with "Christianity heavy". I don't know the person in question's background, but I have encountered churches that seem to think Jesus said "My yoke is hard and my burden is heavy."

I am sure that the intention of those kind of churches - and let the church that thinketh it standeth take heed lest it should fall - ECC included - is to develop strong followers of Jesus. However, the strength of the challenge isn't always matched with an emphasis on the availability of the grace needed to help us rise to the challenge.

I don't the the Hillsongs COnference downloads are available yet. I caught J.O. on tv.

Keith said...

A few thoughts without having listened to Joel Osteen but which are kind of related

The above is a link to someone I know nothing about. However many of the quotes do have a lot going for them ... I like them ... they might also come under the "lite" heading. One can seek to emphasise the kingdom of heaven as a joyful, liberation from sin & whatever chains up & limits us due to personal sin or the damage inflicted by the world or others around us. One can do this & possibly be more faithful to the gospel. Jesus preached, taught and healed. He addressed the whole person. We could just warn about hell & damnation ... ignore God's concern for the poor (and therefore all of the Psalms and the OT in general not to mention references in the NT) for them. Replacing Jesus with feel good about yourself isn't on ... proclaining Jesus as the necessary saviour, deliverer, lord ... who sets you by his sacrifice for YOU as having an incomprehensible worth is ... & its biblical.