MegaChurch Pastor Joel Osteen: ’Bible Says Homosexuality a Sin But I Won’t Preach It’
Televangelist Joel Osteen stopped by "Larry King Now" recently and opened up about his views on homosexuality, the Huffington Post reports.
During his guest spot on King's web talk show, Osteen, the senior pastor of Houston's Lakewood Church, the largest church in the United States, discussed a variety of topics ranging from health care reform to his views of the LGBT community and christianity.
"What are your views on homosexuality?" King asked Osteen.
"The same that they've been. I believe that scripture says that it's a sin but I always follow that up by saying you know what, we're not against anybody," Osteen replied.
King asked about his theory of the cause of homosexuality. "How can it be if we don't know what causes it? You don't know why you're a heterosexual."
"There's a lot of things Larry that I don't understand- so I just don't want to preach on it, preach about it," Osteen replied.
King then asked the pastor if marriage equality "annoys" Osteen.
"It doesn't annoy me," he said. "From a scripture point of view, it's not what my faith would teach, but it doesn't annoy me."
This isn’t the first time Osteen has shared his views on homosexuality. Last October, when the televangelist was promoting his new book "Break Out: 5 Keys To Go Beyond Your Barriers and Live an Extraordinary Life," he told HuffPo’s Josh Zepps about his views on the LGBT community.
Zepps quoted a passage from the book, "It doesn’t matter who likes you or who doesn’t like you, all that matters is God likes you. He accepts you, he approves of you."
Zepps then asked Osteen if that includes LGBT people.
"I believe that God has breathed his life into every single person. We’re all on a journey. Nobody’s perfect," he replied. "I’m not here preaching hate, pushing people down, or telling people what they are doing wrong."
He then went on to say: "The Bible said a sin is pride, a sin is selfish ambition. We tend to pick out these certain things. But I believe every person is made in the image of God, and you have accept them as they are, on their journey. I’m not here to be preaching hate, pushing people down. I’m not here telling people what they’re doing wrong."
In 2012 he told Fox News Sunday’s Chris Wallace he "doesn’t dislike anybody" and believes gay people are some of the "most loving people in the world," even though he sees homosexuality as a sin.
"I believe the scripture says that being gay is a sin. But, you know, every time I say that, Chris ... people say, well, you are a gay hater and you’re a gay basher," Osteen said. "I’m not. I don’t - I don’t dislike anybody. Gays are some of the nicest, kindest, most loving people in the world. But my faith is based on what I believe the scripture says, and that’s the way I read the scripture."
As senior pastor of Lakewood Church, Osteen’s ministry is seen by over 7 million television viewers in over 100 nations around the globe. He has a history of avoiding discussions on controversial social issues such as gay marriage, abortion and politics.