March 29th, 2013
05:57 PM ET

Joel Osteen dismisses "The Bible" controversy

By Jake Tapper, CNN

Televangelist Joel Osteen is a consultant on the History Channel's series, "The Bible," which has become a runaway success. More than 10 million people watched last week's episode, and nearly 14 million watched the debut. Osteen's friend Mark Burnett produces the show.

Osteen is not surprised by the success.

"There are a lot of people of faith still in our country and when somebody takes a step of faith like Mark and [co-executive producer Roma Downey] did, people want to get behind it and see good quality, you know, production of something that's ... dear to all of our hearts, and that is the scripture and the bible," said Osteen.

Osteen also dismissed the controversy surrounding the actor cast as Satan bearing a resemblance in some people's minds to President Obama.

"I felt like it was nonsense," says Osteen. "People can draw funny conclusions."

- Dan Merica

Filed under: Belief • Bible • Christianity

soundoff (459 Responses)
  1. Georgio

    Why is this pseudo minister a consultant on the oldest book in Religious history? This guy is nothing but a well dressed smilin' snake oil sales man. When you see his show, believe me, not all of those seats in that stadium are real people. I know someone who attended one and there were really only about 1000 people there. They actually computer generate all of the "cheap eats"!!!!

    April 7, 2013 at 4:16 pm |
    • Harper Rayne

      This is false. If you aren't there by 11:00am you will end up in the cheap seats, and I guarantee you won't be sitting next to any computer generated images.

      April 8, 2013 at 1:50 pm |
  2. Kilto

    Wow, Clarity. You suck as an Atheist. You can't even tell me what it is really? If you can't tell me what it is why the hell would I wanna look it up?? I'm going to quote you now so here goes..."I don't want to waste my time"! Yeah, I gave you a chance to enlighten me but you can't seem to even do that. Well, good luck with the Atheist thing I see your making a valuable contribution to society and all. Not really...

    April 7, 2013 at 2:02 pm |
    • clarity

      Wow – you suck at debate, Kilto. You misquoted me. But I'm not surprised. Why should I spend time explaining anything to a self-proclaimed sausage-dick such as yourself (see below readers)?

      April 7, 2013 at 2:10 pm |
    • Your comment is awaiting moderation.lol?? Your comment is awaiting moderation.

      What's a sausage-click??

      April 7, 2013 at 2:13 pm |
  3. Kilto

    Wow Clarity...you can't even defend yourself as an Atheist? Are you an atheist? What is an Atheist? Assume, I haven't a clue could you humor me?

    April 7, 2013 at 1:40 pm |
    • The real Tom

      Have you heard of the big band theory?

      April 7, 2013 at 1:42 pm |
    • clarity

      You've already proven from your initial posts here today that you don't need for me to "humor" you, Kilto. If you really don't understand anything about atheism, then you'll have to spend some of your own time I'm afraid – you might just start with Wikipedia to get some general ideas and then do some more research. Then you might not sound like such a fool on here next time.

      April 7, 2013 at 1:47 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      How "It don't mean a thing if it ain't got that certain je ne sais quoi" (Peter Schickele).

      April 7, 2013 at 1:48 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      Sorry, that was big band theory.

      April 7, 2013 at 1:49 pm |
    • clarity

      lol – TTOO – I remember PS – too funny.

      April 7, 2013 at 1:50 pm |
    • Your comment is awaiting moderation.lol?? Your comment is awaiting moderation.

      Atheists pretend to be Christians in prison and the atheists on the outside say, "See, dirtbag Christians!"

      That's a start.

      April 7, 2013 at 1:53 pm |
    • JMEF

      I am a disciple of Glen Miller, oh sure some dote on the Dorsey Boys, Count Basie, Benny Goodman, and many others but there is only one TRUE.......

      April 7, 2013 at 1:58 pm |
    • Science

      Kilto........................The BIG Band (BANG) sounds of long ago ???

      Sound of the Big Bang are available in several lengths here:



      April 7, 2013 at 1:59 pm |
    • Kilto

      wow...MCruise fell for this hoax...what a moron...

      April 8, 2013 at 3:48 pm |
  4. Kilto

    Please Clarity, tell us the grand schemes of Atheism then....Enlighten us because we are that stupid as you suggest....We would like to know....

    April 7, 2013 at 1:25 pm |
    • clarity

      What leads you to believe there are "grand schemes" of atheism?

      April 7, 2013 at 1:29 pm |
  5. Kilto

    All you Atheists and Agnostics can shut the hell up. God is all powerful and all knowing. He created everything and anything. You are just sad/mad because you have nothing better to do with your time. Why don't you suck my gigantic elephant dong so I can get you all to shut the hell up already. You speak lies and filth and have nothing smart to say. Just stupid drivel. Stupid Atheists, why are you on here anyway? I know more Atheists who converted to Christianity then I do Christians who don't believe in anything. There's an oxymoron. How the hell can Atheists believe in nothing yet claim to believe in the big bang theory??? Makes no sense at all!!!!!

    April 7, 2013 at 12:31 pm |
    • clarity

      Oh – so it's no longer a "sausage". I see that expression got you into a bit of hot water on the other thread; lol. You are exactly like a bully driving around in an oversized sports utility vehicle. Manhood problem evidently. I'm sensing that you are having trouble with your "faith" if you have to try to use your tiny noodle as a weapon.

      April 7, 2013 at 12:35 pm |
    • clarity

      Also, you're pretty stupid if that's all you can come up with regarding creation theory; lol.

      April 7, 2013 at 12:36 pm |
    • clarity

      (This one sounds like it could be as dumb as Salero21.)

      April 7, 2013 at 12:37 pm |
    • Richard Cranium

      Typical christian...throwing a temper tantrum the moment anyone questions there religion.

      This is a public forum...if you don't like it, you may leave. You do not have the right to force anyone away from here.

      If you want to preach to the choir, go ahead. Do not expect that is what you will get here.

      April 7, 2013 at 12:38 pm |
    • Your comment is awaiting moderation.lol?? Your comment is awaiting moderation.

      What did you do to clarity to make her sound so, um, weird??

      April 7, 2013 at 1:57 pm |
    • Giggles

      "What did you do to clarity to make her sound so, um, weird??"

      kIlTo oozed stupidity.

      April 7, 2013 at 2:03 pm |
    • MCruise

      Yeah...well your favorite Evangelical, Mr. Osteen, just quit Christianity and said the Bible is a bunch of malarkey.

      Oh my...that's got to sting.


      April 8, 2013 at 8:29 am |
  6. c5boi

    Not bad press for a Jewish boy who realized the mass market was in ignorant rednecks who think the Christian bible is literal

    April 7, 2013 at 12:04 am |
    • Your comment is awaiting moderation.lol?? Your comment is awaiting moderation.

      How should a reader take your comment??

      April 7, 2013 at 1:59 pm |
  7. jack

    I still have a problem with Europeans playing the role of people from the Middle East. Producers who don't get even that much right, really don't care much for accuracy.

    April 6, 2013 at 8:07 pm |
  8. Joel Oilsheen

    When you have as much grease in your hair as I do, you can dismiss any controversy. Bring it on, and it will slide right off me. Careful where you step.

    April 6, 2013 at 1:14 am |
    • Your comment is awaiting moderation.lol?? Your comment is awaiting moderation.

      Yup ye ol' grease is so ol' fashioned. He should just use polytetrafluoroethylene.

      PTFE was accidentally discovered in 1938 by Roy Plunkett and his band during a jam session.

      April 7, 2013 at 2:05 pm |
  9. seerclearly

    Satan is a children's fairy-tail that conveniently (for the Christian control-apparatus called a church) made it into the Bible, to explain why people's egos drive them to do the damnedest things to themselves and each other. Think about it: if you sell out a friend to get ahead, did the devil make you do it, or did you just have a fit of selfishness? Really, people: grow up and face the consequences of your actions, and you won't need a devil to blame them on!

    April 5, 2013 at 5:55 am |
    • cuclearer

      There most certainly is a a devil we call Satan. To not admit it doesn't make it less true. More than you can imagine the forces of evil are alive and well. People don't believe in God because it is inconvenient, but look around you at the world and you will clearly see that Satan is at work. The Bible is not a relic and the inspiration was not invented. You, as everyone else, will answer to the God of the Bible now or later. God is not mocked!

      April 5, 2013 at 10:58 am |
    • diogeron

      More people in the United States believe in angels than accept evolution. This is frightening to any well educated person. The gap between the well educated and those who aren't mirrors the gap in income inequality, both disturbing trends.

      April 5, 2013 at 7:05 pm |
    • Dave

      The devil can make your do nothing, you have free will, God's greatest gift to humanity... To believe in God is to accept for responsibility for your actions, the anti-religious use rhetoric to slam religion yet they will never step up and use truth or doctrine to debate... Look up free will on the Vatican site and you will see your theory on the 'devil made me do it' as baloney and hate propaganda...

      April 6, 2013 at 5:08 pm |
    • Satan

      Now tell me again who's worse.

      April 6, 2013 at 7:54 pm |
    • dontbow

      Look out for those so called 'educated people', they are some of the most under-handed slugs on earth who put others down that dont agree with them.

      April 6, 2013 at 8:45 pm |
    • .

      That's because we are superior. It's just sad that there are those who are too stupid to realize this.

      April 6, 2013 at 9:03 pm |
    • BroDave

      The Bible teaches that man is responsible for his own actions, and is accountable to God for those actions. The scripture says in Romans 14:12 – "So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God." In the Bible, in Genesis 3, God holds humans accountable for their free will choices. In response to Adam "blaming it on his wife" and Eve blaming it on Satan, God judges them both for their decisions. God does not accept "the devil made me do it" excuse, and anybody who ever read the first 3 chapters of the Bible knows that. Your problem is that you haven't read it, you don't want to know what Christians really believe, and you don't want to discuss it. You are close-minded bigot who has made an unfounded charge against Christians. This shows your uninformed prejudice against God, the Bible and Christians in general. But I doubt the truth will change your opinion or stop you from further defamation of Christianity.

      April 6, 2013 at 9:07 pm |
  10. bwells

    There are many on here that need our prayers. I feel sorry for those who do not believe in Christ. I know that He has risen and am glad that I will one day sit along with Him in Heaven. If you are a nonbeliever, please talk to someone whom you know that believes and get your questions answered. YOU owe it to yourself to do so. Give God a chance to work in your life and you will see for yourself.

    April 4, 2013 at 10:57 pm |
    • c5boi

      Quote: "thou art an idiot"...Jesus

      April 7, 2013 at 12:05 am |
  11. Jason

    I'm sure some smart Christian planned it that way....wait...smart Christian....oh well nevermind

    April 4, 2013 at 9:50 pm |
    • Dave

      Interesting your ego allows you to call over a billion people stupid yet it doesn't allow you to see that as a problem...

      April 6, 2013 at 5:10 pm |
    • c5boi

      Well said. And as for 'Dave's ' comments..well.there is never a lack of idiots

      April 7, 2013 at 12:06 am |
  12. WASP

    for all whom think the president is satan, think again.
    the devil, satan etc etc etc isn't some high profile person. it's the guy that sits beside you on the bus or the guy in the diner that hapens to "accidently" spill his coffee on himself then bumps into you and as a way to appologize he offers to buy your breakfast. as you both sit chatting he figures out what it is that you desire the most and "just so happens" to have the contacts or the influence to aid you to achieve your desire. with a simple handshake you have just been tricked into making a deal with the devil and he didn't even have to make a fuss about it.

    seriously think about it. the guy has eternity to collect on some pity little thing as making you wealthy, or whatever it is you would wish for; why go out into the spotlight when he can simply travel around collecting your souls as he wishes undisturbed by onlookers?

    i'm atheist, however i find the christian idea of a devil to be simply moronic. being center stage comes with so much trouble why would he even bother? it's so much simpler........and more "his style" to be low key and work from behind the scenes to get what he wants; i mean seriously he had the best teacher on being low key because you can't get much more low key than god.

    April 4, 2013 at 6:17 am |
    • diogeron

      According to Public Policy Polling, 11% of Americans think Bush was behind 9-11 and 24% of Romney voters believe a Obama is "the anti-Christ." How can we survive as a democracy with a sizable % of the population delusional, paranoid and dumber than a box of rocks?

      April 5, 2013 at 7:09 pm |
    • c5boi


      April 7, 2013 at 12:07 am |
    • shalompucha

      This is a hoax. This is a lie circulated. So all of you who have commented ill of Joel Osteen, please repent. Check out Lakewood church website and know that he is well and still the pastor of Lakewood Church – http://www.lakewoodchurch.com/Pages/Home.aspx

      Kindly always double check out your facts before judging. By the way I am not from his church. I am from South East Asia.

      April 8, 2013 at 9:31 am |
  13. Really

    Joel Olsteen said he is God. He is a fraud, he is not Jesus. Jesus is coming.

    April 3, 2013 at 10:08 pm |
    • Bill

      He really said he was God? I seriously doubt that. Try again

      April 4, 2013 at 5:13 am |
    • Carl

      You really think anyone cares whether you watch the program or not? Please stay away. And Obama IS the son of Satan. Osteen got it right.

      April 4, 2013 at 5:27 am |
    • Dave

      Jesus is not coming, he is already here and has been for 2000 years

      April 6, 2013 at 5:12 pm |
  14. gail boshell

    If Joel Osteen thinks that, we the public, don't recognize that they are portraying President Obama, as Satan, in this film he is insane. If they had wanted the film to be true they would have chosen Dick Cheney, as Satan. I must say I didn't watch it, b/c they cast President Obama, as Satan, but I will never buy any of his books either. I have bought some of his books, before. He was just playing to his base. He nor his base has anything to do with God or Jesus. If they don't recognize President Obama as a man full of Grace.

    April 3, 2013 at 9:13 pm |
    • Brett

      You're a complete idiot. Obama is Satan you fool

      April 4, 2013 at 5:00 am |
  15. Bob

    I have yet to see a poor televangelist! Why is that?

    April 3, 2013 at 6:18 pm |
    • Bob

      Because they are sucessful and you are not

      April 4, 2013 at 5:01 am |
    • Bob

      *Successful* that is, Swimming pools, movie stars.

      April 4, 2013 at 5:03 am |
    • saggyroy

      All you need to do is get a nice suit, and memorize a few bible verses. Arguably the most successful get rich quick scam ever invented. Now on the other hand, my Nigerian uncle, a former king now living in exile....

      April 4, 2013 at 5:56 am |
  16. max3333444555

    Whats the issue? its not a bad show. its mostly fantasy but so is most of whats on tv

    April 3, 2013 at 5:01 pm |
  17. Akira

    I'am a believer now, praise the Lord God Almighty! I want to testify! I was a Pro-ho in my trailer park but I got saved.

    April 3, 2013 at 1:35 pm |
    • End Religion

      Me too, I was lost but now I'm found thank you Jesus. I was so drunk when Jesus found me asleep in a sidewalk. I was addicted to Po-rn but now I'm free. Thank you Jesus Praise God!

      April 3, 2013 at 1:40 pm |
    • Hawaiiguest

      May I join you? I was so lost, alcoholic without remedy. Was also found by police bum-out on an alley at 3:00 AM. But now thanks to Jesus, Praise God I'll be save in Judgement day.

      April 3, 2013 at 11:04 pm |
    • Tim

      Nah, actually all of you Losers are going to Hell. Good riddance to the lot of you

      April 4, 2013 at 5:05 am |
  18. Universe

    God in Quran says, (Islamic scripture)

    “Does the human being not see that we created him from a tiny drop, then he turns into an ardent enemy?” [36:77]

    “He raises a question to us – while forgetting his initial creation – "Who can resurrect the bones after they had rotted?" [36:78

    ‘Say, "The One who initiated them in the first place will resurrect them. He is fully aware of every creation." [36:79]

    “They even attribute to Him sons and daughters, without any knowledge. Be He glorified. He is the Most High, far above their claims.” Quran [6:100]

    “The example of Jesus, as far as GOD is concerned, is the same as that of Adam; He created him from dust, then said to him, "Be," and he was.” Quran [3:59]

    ‘They said, "You have to be Jewish or Christian, to be guided." Say, "We follow the religion of Abraham – monotheism – he never was an idol worshiper." [2:135]

    “Proclaim, He is the One and only GOD. The Absolute GOD. Never did He beget. Nor was He begotten. None equals Him." [112:1]

    “The Messiah, son of Mary is no more than a messenger like the messengers before him, and his mother was a saint. Both of them used to eat the food. Note how we explain the revelations for them, and note how they still deviate!” [5:75]

    “It does not befit God that He begets a son, be He glorified. To have anything done, He simply says to it, "Be," and it is.” [19:35]

    “No soul can carry the sins of another soul. If a soul that is loaded with sins implores another to bear part of its load, no other soul can carry any part of it, even if they were related. ... [35:18]

    “They do not value God as He should be valued. God is the Most Powerful, the Almighty.”[22:74]

    “If you obey the majority of people on earth, they will divert you from the path of God. They follow only conjecture; they only guess.” [Quran 6:116]

    “There shall be no compulsion in religion: the right way is now distinct from the wrong way. Anyone who denounces the devil and believes in God has grasped the strongest bond; one that never breaks. God is Hearer, Omniscient.” [2:256]

    “O people, here is a parable that you must ponder carefully: the idols you set up beside God can never create a fly, even if they banded together to do so. Furthermore, if the fly steals anything from them, they cannot recover it; weak is the pursuer and the pursued.” [22:73]

    Thanks for taking time to read my post. Please take a moment to clear your misconception by going to whyIslam org website.

    April 3, 2013 at 1:17 pm |
    • End Religion

      Which was written first Koran or the Bible?

      Was not Mohammed a child Molester?

      Did not Mohammed make little girls to be his wives?

      Was not Mohammed a sicko?

      April 3, 2013 at 1:43 pm |
    • Capt. Jack

      As a Christian, my book and my guide is the Holy Bible. Therefore, I am not interested in the Quran, which instructs Muslims to persecute and kill all non-Muslims. I see how Muslims treat Christians in Egypt and other parts of the world. Islam is about death. My book is about life. You are the one that is deceived.

      April 3, 2013 at 3:00 pm |
    • ginger315

      It doesn't take me a minute to read your post to know that it is GARBAGE and lies. The god of the Koran is not Jehovah God. The founder is Islam was a child molester. Wake up and smell the coffee.

      April 3, 2013 at 3:41 pm |
    • Todd

      Is this the Anti-Christ God you actually pray too? I wish to make a movie about what a fraud Mohammed was

      April 4, 2013 at 5:11 am |
    • Reality

      Putting the kibosh on all religions in less than ten seconds: Priceless !!!

      • As far as one knows or can tell, there was no Abraham i.e. the foundations of Judaism, Christianity and Islam are non-existent.

      • As far as one knows or can tell, there was no Moses i.e the pillars of Judaism, Christianity and Islam have no strength of purpose.

      • There was no Gabriel i.e. Islam fails as a religion. Christianity partially fails.

      • There was no Easter i.e. Christianity completely fails as a religion.

      • There was no Moroni i.e. Mormonism is nothing more than a business cult.

      • Sacred/revered cows, monkey gods, castes, reincarnations and therefore Hinduism fails as a religion.

      • Fat Buddhas here, skinny Buddhas there, reincarnated/reborn Buddhas everywhere makes for a no on Buddhism.

      Added details available upon written request.

      A quick search will put the kibosh on any other groups calling themselves a religion.

      e.g. Taoism

      "The origins of Taoism are unclear. Traditionally, Lao-tzu who lived in the sixth century is regarded as its founder. Its early philosophic foundations and its later beliefs and rituals are two completely different ways of life. Today (1982) Taoism claims 31,286,000 followers.

      Legend says that Lao-tzu was immaculately conceived by a shooting star; carried in his mother's womb for eighty-two years; and born a full grown wise old man. "

      April 4, 2013 at 3:12 pm |
  19. gahh

    Make that money while you can. One of these days, people are going to wise up and realize you're nothing but a fast talker, using God to make your money. Preaching prosperity to people who give their hard earned money to your church, is nothing but a scam. You, Kenneth Robinson, and the rest, should have to pay taxes on all that free money, you lie to get.

    April 2, 2013 at 7:20 pm |
    • Patricia

      He actually made all his money on selling books, he doesn't take people's money at the church services. The money people donate usually goes to cover the cost of the facilities he uses.

      April 3, 2013 at 8:46 am |
  20. bel terza

    If you think Ernest`s story is really cool..., a month-ago father in-law also made $9367 putting in a eighteen hour week from home and there friend's aunt`s neighbour done this for 9-months and got paid more than $9367 part-time from there pc. apply the information at this site, ............ BIT40. ℂom

    April 2, 2013 at 6:50 pm |
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