April 24th, 2012
01:40 PM ET
2 years ago

Osteen: Romney is a Christian

(CNN) – Famed pastor Joel Osteen reiterated his position that Mitt Romney is a Christian on Tuesday, saying as long as the likely GOP presidential nominee believes that Jesus is the Son of God then he subscribes to the Christian faith.

"When I hear Mitt Romney say that he believes that Jesus is the Son of God–that he's the Christ, raised from the dead, that he's his Savior–that's good enough for me," Osteen said in an interview to air on CNN's "The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer."

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While Osteen described the Mormon faith as "not traditional Christianity," he said he believes Mormons fall under the Christian tent.

"Mormonism is a little different, but I still see them as brothers in Christ," the pastor argued.

Romney's faith has largely remained an outlier in this presidential cycle, though some have expressed skepticism at the likely Republican nominee's religious views.

A leading Baptist pastor in Dallas, for example, made headlines in October when he urged Republicans to vote against Romney, saying voters should elect what he called a Christian, not a Mormon. Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints identify themselves as Christians.

More recently, some students at the evangelical Liberty University have taken issue with Romney being tapped to deliver the school's commencement address in May.

Recent polls, however, show a majority of Americans are open to having a Mormon as president.

Romney is not the only one who has taken heat over his faith. Polls have shown a small minority of Americans have questioned whether President Barack Obama is a Christian.

Countering the speculation, Osteen said Tuesday he has spent time with the president and has no doubt about his faith.

"I believe with all my heart that he's a Christian, as he says he is," Osteen said.

Watch the full interview HERE

Watch The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer weekdays at 4pm to 6pm ET and Saturdays at 6pm ET. For the latest from The Situation Room click here.


Filed under: 2012 • Faith • Mitt Romney • TV-The Situation Room
soundoff (553 Responses)
  1. A.Owens

    In regards to Joel Osteen, I had been giving him the benefit of doubt in Christian teaching. But this has gone too far. Now I am convinced Joel is a false teacher. Mormons do NOT believe the Bible is the only true word of God. They also do NOT believe GOD/JESUS/Holy SPIRIT are one. I can't believe Joel Osteen has said this. Truly amazing.

    April 24, 2012 09:49 pm at 9:49 pm |
  2. O.T.

    Notice how often CNN runs stories about Romney's religion. Here, on a night when Romney sews up the nomination, is another one. This is not journalism. It's a subtle form of religious hate-mongering. The network, which is very pro-Obama is constantly reminding readers that Romney is a Mormon, in a way that emphasizes that his religion is "different." All Americans should be appalled.

    April 24, 2012 09:49 pm at 9:49 pm |
  3. Dan from Texas

    Well I suppose this would be a ringing endorsement if Joel Osteen was actually a Christian. Joel, God is going to be very angry at you for pretending to be a preacher.

    April 24, 2012 09:50 pm at 9:50 pm |
  4. Carlos

    Let Jesus Christ decide who is a Christian, as He will.

    April 24, 2012 09:51 pm at 9:51 pm |
  5. Cyric

    Like all religion, cuckoo bananas.

    April 24, 2012 09:51 pm at 9:51 pm |
  6. tama Tonga

    I've find the Mormons cult lived a more Christlike life than any of these so called Christian...spewing hatred and misinformed information..where is the love Christ taught?

    April 24, 2012 09:52 pm at 9:52 pm |
  7. PhilaVarsity

    Mormons can call themselves whatever they want. Calling themselves Christians doesn't actually make it so. I guess what I don't understand is why they are so adamant about being called Christians.

    April 24, 2012 09:54 pm at 9:54 pm |
  8. URAllCrAZ

    Wow. Reading the comments you "Christians" are making about Mitt and his Mormonism. Good Grief. Are you all for real? Have you looked in a mirror lately?

    April 24, 2012 09:55 pm at 9:55 pm |
  9. denny2100

    How would Osteen know?

    April 24, 2012 09:55 pm at 9:55 pm |
  10. Karen

    Well, if Osteen said it, it MUST be true.

    April 24, 2012 09:56 pm at 9:56 pm |
  11. Lenny Pincus

    Is Osteen a Christian?

    April 24, 2012 09:57 pm at 9:57 pm |
  12. normajean @ verizon ,com

    Whatever happened to the separation of church and state?????We;re not talking about making him president of a church......we're talking about a country..The basics of these religions are not the issue at this time!!!Get a life folks!!!!

    April 24, 2012 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
  13. karen in texas

    ok, so Romney's a christian, obama's a christian.....can we please move on to something that has some real value in terms of this election, like, for example, concerns about the economy???

    April 24, 2012 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  14. Glenc

    Osteen is wrong, clear and simple. Mormons (LDS if you prefer) are not Christians. They don't believe in the trilogy. They don't believe in the supremacy of the Holy Bible. And a whole bunch of other stuff.

    April 24, 2012 10:01 pm at 10:01 pm |
  15. Chipster

    Religion, Race, Gender, Nationality, ......whatever excuse people feel they must use in order to feel superior to someone else is just pathetic. A President who understands and is ready to defend constitutional principles of liberty, equality and justice for ALL will have my support. I don't care what religion, race, gender, etc. that person may be. I care if they're wise, compassionate, and responsible.

    April 24, 2012 10:02 pm at 10:02 pm |
  16. O.T.

    otice how often CNN runs stories about Romney's religion. Here, on a night when Romney sews up the nomination, is another one. This is not journalism. It's a subtle form of religious hate-mongering. The network, which is very pro-Obama is constantly reminding readers that Romney is a Mormon, in a way that emphasizes that his religion is "different." All Americans should be appalled. [[Right now CNN online has a separate video that tells us about Romney's days as a Mormon bishop. Two stories, one day, point made.]]

    April 24, 2012 10:02 pm at 10:02 pm |
  17. Nate

    For those who say Mormon's don't believe the bible is the word of God or in Jesus, go ask one. You may be surprised a Mormon will tell you differently than your pastor. If you want to know about a Catholic, ask a Catholic not a Baptist– catch my drift.

    April 24, 2012 10:04 pm at 10:04 pm |
  18. ericgoestoholland

    I'm not what you call a religious person, but I saw this interview when it happened, and Joel Osteen most certainly did NOT say that Romney is a Christian. Osteen pointed out similarities and differences between the two faiths, and said that, much like many Christians feel about Judaism, Mormonism can be seen as having some legitimate connections with Christianity and he feels that Romney's faith shouldn't matter too drastically to evangelicals. Whoever picked the headline for this article is really asking for it, because Osteen's words are not represented accurately, making him suggest something he never suggested.

    April 24, 2012 10:05 pm at 10:05 pm |
  19. URAllCrAZ

    Amen, Carlos. Let this discussion die there.

    April 24, 2012 10:06 pm at 10:06 pm |
  20. Pablo

    I think anyone that takes a 2000 year old book as fact is crazy.

    April 24, 2012 10:07 pm at 10:07 pm |
  21. JimfromBham

    So many of the comments seem to be from people who want to tell God what to do, rather than asking God what we should do. I figure that when we meet our Maker, He will let us know whether Mormans are accepted in heaven.

    April 24, 2012 10:07 pm at 10:07 pm |
  22. Kathryn

    How nice to FINALLY see somebody acknowledge that followers of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints are Christians. For crying out loud – it's in THEIR NAME that they believe in Jesus. So what if they have an additional text that they read? The books that are in the Bible aren't the only accounts of Jesus' life that was written – they were the ones that made it into the final copy by vote.

    As far as people bringing up that they "believe in polygamy" – the church has disavowed that practice since the days that Utah entered into the Union.

    I'd also like to point out that in the story of Soddom & Ghemorrah Lot had intercourse with his two daughters when they believed themselves to be the only people left. Should we, therefore deduce that people who accept the Bible as the difinitive word endorse incest?

    April 24, 2012 10:11 pm at 10:11 pm |
  23. Joel Reyes

    Thanks Joel Osteen,
    Knowledge. As you can imagine I get emails everyday from people bashing the LDS church and most of them are pretty bad :(. But my knowledge gives me security and I just laugh at the emails I receive, because for one thing, why would people care about this religion if it wasn't so true and if it wasn't such a great blessing to everything that happens in life? I mean come on people, just think for a second.

    April 24, 2012 10:11 pm at 10:11 pm |
  24. Dale SJ CA

    Why does that Osteen character continue to think we really care what he believes or think's is right and just. He is just another mortal human like the rest of us. Osteen, get over yourself, your words are just that.. words.

    April 24, 2012 10:14 pm at 10:14 pm |
  25. PhilaVarsity

    Joel Reyes, it is an insult to us Christians to call LDS a Christian Church. If you don't believe in the Trinity you are not Christian. Even Protestants and Catholics can agree on that. Geez.

    April 24, 2012 10:19 pm at 10:19 pm |
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