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Chesterton on Osteen

Chesterton on Osteen December 18, 2014

Not directly, of course. Responding to yesterday’s Joel Osteen, Gosh, my friend Kevin Flaherty, head of the New York G. K. Chesterton Society (in the picture, that’s Kevin to the right with the bag), writes: “As G. K. Chesterton said in The Everlasting Man, ‘A dead thing can go with the stream, but only a living thing can go against it’.”

In contrast, a respondent to the item insisted that

Joel Osteen is very motivational and he preaches a message of empowerment and self control. I find this to be a very good man who sends the message of “God helping those who help themselves.” This piece is unfairly critical and if all Christians had the outlook Joel has, think of the positive influence we would have on this world.

I’m not sure what would happen if every Christian had Osteen’s outlook, but I’m sure it wouldn’t be good. We’re all narcissistic enough without having the narcissism rationalized and encouraged. We’d have a lot of hurting people who found that they couldn’t help themselves and therefore thought God wasn’t going to help them either.


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