Joel Osteen Endorses Che Ahn’s HRock Church

[Many thanks to the individual who brought this to my attention.]

[Update 01/09/11: the video has been moved from the main HRock site; but, it is still available here.]

Joel Osteen of Lakewood Church in Houston, TX, purported to be the largest congregation in the US[1], has recently endorsed Che Ahn’s HRock Church in Pasadena, CA. There is currently a promotional video[2] with Osteen as spokesman on the HRock site. Here’s the transcript of Osteen’s promo:

If you’re looking for a good Bible-based church that offers the same kind of uplifting messages that I give each week, I encourage you to go see my good friends Pastor Che and Sue Ahn. They’re at HRock in Pasadena. I know they’ll make you feel right at home; and, you’ll be blessed and inspired. You can find them at hrockchurch.com.

Che Ahn is closely associated with Bill Johnson of Bethel Church in Redding, CA. Both Johnson and Ahn were on stage at Todd Bentley’s “commissioning” at Lakeland on 06/23/08 at the height of this ‘revival’ with Che holding the microphone as the individual speakers spoke or ‘prophesied’ over Bentley[3].  Che Ahn and Todd Bentley as well as three others on stage that evening — John Arnott, Wes Campbell, and Stacey Campbell — endorsed Bill Johnson’s book When Heaven Invades Earth which I’ve quoted from in the article Bill Johnson’s ‘Born Again’ Jesus, Part I. All these individuals are very active in the New Apostolic Reformation (NAR).

Open question to members, congregants, and supporters of Joel Osteen and Lakewood Church: Do you really want to support someone who is promoting a church whose pastor actively endorsed Todd Bentley’s Lakeland ‘revival?’

[1] Lakewood Church, Wikipedia <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lakewood_Church>
[2] Osteen, Joel “HRock Church promotional video” <http://www.hrockchurch.com/index.html> accessed 10/01/10
[3] Ahn, Che “Todd Bentley ‘Commissioning’ of June 23, 2008.” <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-A05WQYi7aQ> Bill Johnson is at 1:30 – 2:10

22 Responses to Joel Osteen Endorses Che Ahn’s HRock Church

  1. cherylu says:

    All of these movements are so intertwined. I guess I am not at all surprised that a Word/faith pastor like Joel Osteen would endorse someone like Che Ahn.

    What truly troubles me though, is that the influence of all of these movements and theologies has been so far reaching that you can hardly seem to get away from them anywhere in the Christian world anymore.

  2. Craig says:

    Yes, there’s definitely a convergence.

    Keep in mind that Word/Faith undergirds a lot of — if not all — Latter Rain/NAR teachings.

  3. Pat says:

    I agree with cherylu, that it is almost impossible to get away from this type of teaching. Even if you flip from charismatic to a more traditional, it seems you will still run into “Purpose Driven” or contemplative something. It is very disconcerting and it appears that even the WoF/NAR and emergent are becoming buddies.I am amazed at,what little I know about this, how many mainstream churches are embracing these teachings on one level or another.

  4. Craig says:

    Pat,

    Yes, you are correct that Emergent and WoF/Nar are converging. I believe it was Herescope that had a series of articles on that very subject.

  5. Sylvia says:

    I am sad to have to agree with you Pat & Cheryl, and to say that it is not only America that has fallen so very far into all this. Britain, and even Brazil are being systematically taken over (and they are the only nations I KNOW about). Truly the Bible knew what was ahead when it warned us 2000 years ago.
    We are finding it is becoming increasingly more difficult to speak to Christians about the TRUTH of these things, than it is to unbelievers. Some unbelievers we meet will actually see what Christians cannot.

    Helping Hands Brazil

  6. Kim says:

    10 years ago, I would probably ask something like “So what is wrong with Joel Osteen or Rick Warren?”

    Bible study and fellowshiping with others who love scripture have been an immense help. God opened my eyes to the truth when I prayed for it.

  7. Craig says:

    I had forgotten that Arnott, Johnson and Ahn made up the “Revival Alliance” as the ‘apostolic authority’ over Todd Bentley as announced by C. Peter Wagner at the 06/23/08 ‘ceremony:’

    http://www.elijahlist.com/words/display_word/6611

    Che Ahn even took over the proceedings at Lakeland on the 25th as Wagner states:

    P.S. June 25 was Todd’s day off, so Ché Ahn took the service. Among other things, he used Chuck Pierce’s “Be Revived” anointing oil to personally anoint the 1,000 or so pastors as “carriers of fire” to their churches. Forty-seven nations were represented in the meeting. He admonished them to receive it here in Lakeland, Florida, and then give it away!

    What was the “it” they were to ‘give away?’ It was the “anointing” — see the section of the Johnson Born Again Jesus pt I article titled, “The Anointing.”

  8. peacebringer says:

    I could have said that 3 years ago. On Warren, I would have perhaps said something to the effect that I find his writing to be wrong focused (which I did) but not alarming. Funny how when eyes are opened and God wakes one up how perspective changes. This we have to remember that those that do not see or hear have yet to be awakened.

  9. Craig says:

    Peacebringer, you said:

    This we have to remember that those that do not see or hear have yet to be awakened.

    And, this is the reason for my Are You a Heretic? post.

  10. Craig says:

    While I don’t agree with all of John MacArthur’s views, I give him two thumbs up for having the guts to speak the truth about Osteen:

  11. Scott says:

    Couldn’t agree more. Though I generally like this video (gosh, what Osteen-loather wouldn’t), I’m almost leary of posting it on say..my FB page. JohnnyMac in my opinion needs better balance…he has a particular way about him that doesn’t come across the best. Too intense, like “there, take that”.

  12. Robert says:

    I think MacArthur is way out of line in the way he just stops short of calling Osteen, Satan. I’m not a big Osteen fan but his ministry, while watered down at times of the gospel, has led many to the Lord. God has to use many people with many styles to reach the lost. The people who go to Osteen’s church would never step foot in Macarthur’s church. You have to look at the fruit. I don’t think Osteen’s followers will go to hell for having positive thinking. MacArthur needs to re-read Matt. 7:1-5 “do not judge…” While, you can take Osteen’s teaching to the extreme and get caught up in self, some people need to have that kind of teaching to get them out of their pit. Bottom line is stop judging others and just concentrate on preaching the gospel to the lost. Let God take care of false doctrine. I think both sides have some valid points but I don’t hear Osteen blasting MacArthur and he has a larger audience. It just leaves a bad taste in my mouth to hear a pastor calling names. Why are Christians so brutal to each other? Aren’t there bigger issues to deal with?

  13. Craig says:

    Robert,

    Thanks for coming by. Perhaps you didn’t see Osteen on Larry King live where he couldn’t say that Jesus is the ONLY WAY and that others who “love God” whether Hindu, Buddhist, etc. may get to heaven:

    I agree that those who go to Osteen’s largely would not go to MacArthur’s church because they may not like the True Gospel which requires that they make JESUS LORD rather than themselves. And they largely don’t know their Bibles and may find MacArthur’s preaching offensive or boring. What did Jesus say? “I’ve not come to bring peace but a sword.”

    “Fruit” is sound doctrine if you put it into the full context of Matthew 7:15-27. Ponder this: do you think the Dalai Lama has “good fruit;” i.e.; isn’t he a very moral and giving person? Do you think he’ll make it to The Kingdom?

    Osteen teaches a version of New Thought which is the genesis of Word of Faith (see the last few paragraphs of the “Word of Faith Connections and Disconnections” section of Bill Johnson’s Born Again Jesus, part II on this site for a bit more info). Here’s a quote from a “law of attraction” proponent who is promoting his own book:

    http://www.newthoughtgeneration.com/2009/06/new-thought-movement-and-the-power-of-the-law-of-attraction/

    “The Law of Attraction is often closely associated with New Thought Movement and the two are similar in a number of ways. The New Thought Movement refers to a set of religious ideas that emerged under Phineas Parkhurst Quimby in the United States towards late 19th century. The theory is inspired by Transcendental philosophy and the believers preach monism and use of affirmative prayers and thoughts for the fulfillment of their ends. The New Thought theory operates on a scientific way of thinking focusing upon positive thought and belief in individual abilities. Both Law of Attraction and the New Thought Movement agree upon the power of mind in creating reality.

    “The New Thought Movement like the Law of Attraction places the individual above society and goes a little further by speaking in favor of a value-based society where the individual mind is the driving force behind all activities.”

    You say, “MacArthur needs to re-read Mt 7:1-5 ‘do not judge…’” Perhaps you need to re-read this Scripture yourself as the main point is to not judge hypocritically. However, 1 Corinthians 5:12-13 reads:

    12 What business is it of mine to judge those outside the church? Are you not to judge those inside? 13 God will judge those outside. “Expel the wicked man from among you.”

    Osteen does not preach the full Gospel; he only teaches part. It’s GREAT to believe that Jesus is your Savior; but, it’s difficult to trust Him as LORD and give Him Lordship over your life. Osteen preaches the first part. However, he teaches that you, yourself are lord over your “Best Life Now” by having a positive attitude. Osteen does not “blast” MacArthur or anyone (as evidenced by the video referenced above) because he believes that words have the power to either bless or curse. He’s a nice guy and doesn’t want to “curse” anybody. Unfortunately, this belief has more to do with witchcraft — manipulating “good” or “bad” forces — than Christianity.

    In case you are unfamiliar with one of the core Word of Faith beliefs, here it is: the belief is that faith is a force and that God used this “force of faith” in the creation account when He said, “Let there be light.” Similarly, adherents can use this same force and this force MUST respond. You can create your own destiny by manipulation of this force.

    Exposing false teachers and false doctrine IS preaching the Gospel to the lost as many of those who are sitting under false teaching which does not provide a saving faith ARE lost. This is a BIG issue. Many are on the broad road to destruction as they are believing in a different Jesus, a different gospel, which is no gospel at all [2 Corinthians 11:3-4; Galatians 1:6-8].

  14. Robert says:

    Thanks for your comments. I’m not trying to get into a theological debate as these things go nowhere. I’ll just leave one last comment as I know you will always have the last say since this is your blog and I can tell you need to have the last word. I don’t agree with everything Osteen says, just like I don’t agree with everything many pastor’s say. Everyone has a bias in there own interpretation of the bible. That’s why there are so many denominations or “movements.” Even the theologians of the time of Christ got it wrong at times and I’m sure there were many debates about theology. You have a large list of people you seem to pick on and that’s great you have that kind of time to spend on refuting their theology. I look at trying to live by the absolutes of the gospel. A teacher of the law asked Jesus in Luke 10:25-27 how to inherit eternal life. Jesus answered, “love the Lord your God with all your heart and all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind;and your neighbor as yourself.” (quoting scripture that the expert did not fully understand) my point is you make yourself out as an expert that is so bent on refuting people’s theology that you are in danger of losing sight of the big and simpler picture just as this theologian did in Luke. Ask yourself this question, does your site change any minds? I think you’re just preaching to your own choir. I’m sure you’ll have a lot to say so be blessed. I know you have good intentions.

  15. Craig says:

    Robert,

    If you’ll read my Are You a Heretic? post you’ll see that I agree that no one has perfect theology including me. I disagree wth some of MacArthur’s theology; HOWEVER, we agree on the absolutes. Osteen does not even agree that Jesus Christ is “The Way, The Truth and The Life” and that “No one comes to the Father except through Me.” That is not only false doctrine, it is doctrine that can keep someone from achieving a saving faith.

    Interestingly, in the way in which you used Matthew 7:1-5, you yourself are guilty of judging MacArthur and me. Do you not see that?

    I don’t have a list of people I “pick on” — these are individuals with questionable doctrine. I put in hours and hours of research to make sure the final analysis is correct. I don’t get paid for my time, nor do I expect to. I put this out for anyone to read. I’m prayerful that individuals who are caught up under false teaching will read a part of this and get delivered from it.

    Using your definition of the absolutes of Scripture to include Luke 10:26-27 (I agree this is one of the absolutes), is it possible that to love your neighbor is to point out false doctrine in order to “save them from the fire?” (Jude 22-23; James 5:19-20)

  16. Craig says:

    Osteen describes HRock as “a good, Bible-based church” yet Ahn has a series now titled “Tapping the Well” in which he’s using Habakkuk 1:5 as if it’s a prophecy of something good about to happen. Here’s the verse:

    “Look at the nations and watch — and be utterly amazed. For I am going to do something in your days that you would not believe, even if you are told.” [NIV]

    Here’s his current video/teaching:

    So, what does the Habakkuk verse mean? Here’s the next verse, verse 6:

    “I am raising up the Babylonians, that ruthless and impetuous people, who sweep across the whole earth to seize dwelling places not their own.” [NIV]

    The NIV text note on verse 5 explains it:

    “To the people of Judah [the southern kingdom of Israel at that time] it was incredible that God would give them over to the arrogant Babylonians.”

    If you put this in full context by reading verses 1-4 it becomes obvious that this was a judgment against Judah! Why would Che Ahn speak of this as if this was a good thing? And, THIS is “bible-based” teaching? Further, this prophecy has already been fulfilled!

    I submit that people who sit under this kind of teaching without doing any sort of cursory check to see if it’s even CLOSE to being Biblically accurate are heaping judgment upon themselves. WAKE UP!

  17. Sammy says:

    I dont blame Che Ahn for Todd Bentley situation. Let’s be real! You can’t blame a store owner if a gun man comes into a store. There was no way Che was to know that Todd was doing something wrong.Maybe that is why it was hidden by Todd?????? Think about it!!! Che saw ( like most people) saw it as a revival outing. Che was pure of heart and most of the people going there and others.To me, there was an anointing on the meetings and people did sing and dance to the Lord because it is about the Lord in the first place.

    Example like in professional baseball. It was like playing for the Dodgers but Manny Ramirez was behind the scenes doing Steroids. Then he got tested at random and was caught. You can’t blame the manager, fans, owner, James Loney, Matt Kemp for it if Manny shot up at his home!and didn’t tell anyone. See my point! It is only Todd’s fault!!

    I want to say another thing.. We all make mistakes but thing is that I don’t know Rick Joyner and all of them but what I do know is that during the meetings people can get tempted. Todd could be commissioned by the Lord and then Todd changed during the outpouring. He was having marital issues. Why would a grown man want to tell everyone he is having marital problems. We don’t! So how then is Che and other people suppose to know?

    You can’t blame Che for doing what he was suppose to do. I supported the Lakeland Outpouring because it was awesome and you could see what it was doing. God’s anointing was there and I hope they make a new one because I would check to see if God’s presence is there. if it is, then we have a good thing!

    So the point is that you can really only blame Todd because he hid a secret that was exposed by God.

  18. Craig says:

    Sammy,

    To be blunt, If you truly believe Lakeland was of God you are deceived. No doubt there was an anointing there; but, it was the false one as spoken of by the Apostle John in 1st John 2:27 [see vv 19-27 for full context]. There were no verifiable healings. I’m not necessarily denying there were any at all as God can heal anywhere He wants.

    This post isn’t about blaming Che for not knowing about Bentley’s marital infidelities. This is about Osteen supporting Ahn whose support for Bentley and all the false doctrines he stands for — not to mention his own. Ahn, Bentley, Johnson are all from the same very polluted pond. For your benefit, I suggest reading info on all three and other’s who support the New Apostolic Reformation (NAR) which promotes very dangerous doctrine. The articles here are focused primarily on Johnson, a few on Bentley and Bob Jones; however, there are plenty of sites with info on the others.

    Singing and dancing “to the Lord” does not necessarily indicate the worship is to the one True God of the Bible. There many other fervent worshipers in Hinduism, Islam, etc. who are obviously NOT worshiping our Trinitarian God.

  19. Craig says:

    Thanks to Steve B. (omots) for posting a video of Osteen on “Spritiual DNA” on another thread:

    This teaching is now rampant in hyper-charismatic circles including Osteen’s friend Che Ahn. One can see Ahn’s words on “spiritual DNA” a quoted here at the “Getting Down to the DNA of Spiritual DNA section:

    http://notunlikelee.wordpress.com/2012/04/27/bill-johnsons-christology-a-new-age-christ-part-iiib/

  20. Craig says:

    Here’s some insight into how my strange brain works. The other day I was listening to some music, and the lyric “too bad Johnny, it’s a-l-l-l-l OVER for you; ha ha ha” is sung on this one tune. I immediately recognized it as a nod to a lyric on another song, but I didn’t immediately figure out which one. A bit later, I did a google search and found it. It’s from a song from 1966 by Syndicate of Sound titled “Little Girl”. The actual original lyric is “too bad little girl it’s a-l-l-l-l OVER for you; ha ha ha”.

    I found the original song on YouTube. Check out the lead singer. It’s JOEL OSTEEN!

    Well, not exactly; but, he sure LOOK’s like him! Check out the way he phrases a few things and his mannerisms.

  21. David Ong says:

    Craig,
    When people are deceived they are deceived. That is the danger of deception. Reasons don’t remove deception if not your are not deceived no more. To see or to understand the danger and fallacy like the Osteens of this world one needs to humble oneself and truly seek the wisdom and discernment of the Holy Spirit and read the Wood of God like a dying hungry man until we see the light from His point of view. Keep up the good work.

  22. Craig says:

    David,

    Thanks for your comment. But, I dunno; it seems if an individual hears the truth, the individual may, at some point, actually listen to it. At least that’s the hope I have. Plus there are accounts of many who were formerly deceived but had woken up to the truth.

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