April 24th, 2012
01:40 PM ET
11 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. O-Dog

    @underwhelmed cause they sent everyone else that wasnt mormon and caucasian down w/ Jesus + Lucifer. Mitt isnt even a real person anyways. He's just an actor whos being run by the RNC like Reagan was and McCain was after the convention in '08. He's a selfish a-hole who cares only about the 1% of society at most. Do u want a leader of the free world who has the thinking level of that?

    April 24, 2012 09:01 pm at 9:01 pm |
  2. CyndyP

    Joel is wrong! Mormons believe Jesus is the son of God and we are all sons and daughters. Christians believe that Christ is God. God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Ghost. Again, Joel is wrong!

    April 24, 2012 09:01 pm at 9:01 pm |
  3. Skip Skeptic

    Amen, father, AMEN.

    April 24, 2012 09:02 pm at 9:02 pm |
  4. Anonymous

    hmm,....not so much different than the devil. The Devil also believes that Jesus is the son of God, he rose from the dead, Jesus is the savior of the world. The different is the devil doesn't want Jesus to be his Lord. So, does Romney wants Jesus to be his Lord? and follow the word? be the real follower of Christ? that's the questions. Osteen is too naive. This is all for political reason to get Christian to vote for Romney since we all know that Obama is a Muslim. This is going to be hard for Christians, true followers of Christ, to vote this year. A mormon or a muslim?

    April 24, 2012 09:03 pm at 9:03 pm |
  5. PuzzledInPeoria

    For someone who does not preach the gospel of Jesus Christ, Joel Osteen is an odd one to judge who is a Christian. His sermons are routinely pep talks and motivational speeches that rarely even mention Jesus, let alone the word sin. Osteen is a pastor who has never been to seminary, and I don't know if he has been ordained or not. There are two problems with calling Mormonism Christianity: Their adherence to the Book of Mormon adds to Scripture, something the Bible warns against, and they believe in posthumous baptism, certainly not a biblical concept. Joel Osteen likes to win friends and influence people, but a theologian he is not.

    April 24, 2012 09:04 pm at 9:04 pm |
  6. Guest

    Cmon, Romney thinks JC came to the US. His beliefs are whacko.

    April 24, 2012 09:04 pm at 9:04 pm |
  7. Jackie

    Joel got his check from the Romney Team and Joel will tell his faithful to vote for a Mormon. Can you believe how Evangelical, Catholic and Baptist Religious Leaders are now instructing their faithful to set aside faith and vote for a Mormon. Famous names like Graham, Robertson and Warren have all been paid to get their faithful to vote for Mitt. Mitt Romney is buying religious leaders and this proves Churches are business and have nothing to do with God. Mitt will use his executive powers to make sure America changes from in God We Trust to in Joseph Smith Jr. We Trust. The Founding Father made it a point to leave religion out of the Government but all that will change under King Mitt and Queen Ann Romney.

    April 24, 2012 09:04 pm at 9:04 pm |
  8. Gavin Ford

    Osteen couldn't be more creepy if he tried.

    April 24, 2012 09:05 pm at 9:05 pm |
  9. AZ

    I think u guys have problem!! If Jesus is son of God, who is your God? why do u pray son of God? without praying GOD,,,, come on find out the truth!!!! something wrong some where. Do not get into trouble,, it is not too late now.

    April 24, 2012 09:05 pm at 9:05 pm |
  10. Gavin Ford

    It's hilarious to see Christians mocking and finding Mormon's beliefs so ridiculous and absurd when their own beliefs are just as crazy.

    April 24, 2012 09:07 pm at 9:07 pm |
  11. Jim Stanek

    wow, like this is really news. try to understand and represent a variety of viewpoints, CNN. modern fundamentalists/evangelicals think Osteen is ridiculous. so his statements really don't represent what you consider to be the dominant "Christian" mindset in this country.

    For crying out loud, Osteen is so outlandish that HBO created a villainous parody of him and his wife in True Blood Season 2.

    April 24, 2012 09:11 pm at 9:11 pm |
  12. Phil J

    Joel Osteen is WRONG!! Mormonism is NOTChristianity. Mormonism is a CULT. Anytime a religion states that man alone is not capable of reading, and comprehending, the Word of God, and therefore must depend on the interpretation of a PROPHET is a CULT!

    Breaking nuts with rocks!! Really? What's offensive is that we Christians who subscribe to the absolute truth must sit by idly while our government allows every faith including Scientologists to spread LIES.(Xenu?)

    I have always respected one's ability to choose for themselves, but when you lie like Joel just did; well, one of us of the true faith is obligated to stand up and say "With all due respect, Reverend, you're wrong!"

    April 24, 2012 09:14 pm at 9:14 pm |
  13. Breh

    Really ? This is a so-called preacher who's now ventured into politics. Save your opinions Mr. Osteen. You live a very lavished life, therefore I can see the similalrities between you and the Republican Presidential candidate. Whatever happened to the separation of Church and State? Your mask is slowly starting to peel and you and your agenda will be revealed. How sad...

    April 24, 2012 09:15 pm at 9:15 pm |
  14. Liz the First

    Believing Jesus is the son of God doesn't make you a Christian, following His teachings makes you a Christian!!! and if you are a conservative, you are not following His teachings! Jesus was a liberal who preached against the exact ideas the conservatives so profoundly embrace today. 'Christian conservative' is an oxymoron. so Romney is what passes for Christian these days. but if folks want to vote for a real Christian, one who embodies what their savior actually taught, the choice is Obama!

    April 24, 2012 09:17 pm at 9:17 pm |
  15. Allen W

    Why does religion matter? or lack thereof?

    First let me ask, "how do you make decisions?"

    In order for me to make a decision I first have to find out more about the subject.
    I ask myself, "what is the truth?"

    In this case we are trying to decide for whom we should vote for.
    In order to make this decision we must first find out the truth about this individual.

    This can be done by researching the person's life such as schools attended, voting history, govenment positions held, leadership roles, interviewing personal friends of the nominee, fellow coworkers etc..
    and, You can listen to the claims the person is making.
    Religious belief is only one of several claims a nominee is going to make/ is making.

    In my opinion if you claim to be something then there are consequences to the claim.
    For example – I claim to be the fastest runner in the world. Consequences?
    Nobody would believe me. First I would have to prove it!

    Proof is in the pudding.

    Claiming to be a yoga master must mean you know yoga pretty well.
    Right? I think we get the idea.
    Claiming to be of a certain religion means you share in that religion's core belief.
    If I say I am a christian but do not believe Christ existed then what am I?
    If I say I am sun worshipper but do not believe in the sun then what am I?

    So should it matter what religion a person claims to be a part of? Absolutely!
    They are telling you what they believe in!
    Their perspective on reality is being exposed.
    Example – I tell you that I believe texting while driving is dangerous.
    A vote is being conducted to allow/disallow texting while driving.
    How do you think I will vote? It's obvious isn't it.

    So, am I telling you that you can predict how a person will vote based on their beliefs?
    Yes. But, that brings me to my original question. "What is the truth?"

    Even tho someone may claim to be "this" or "that" it is only in their past and current actions that this belief can be demonstrated.
    So many people make false claims. Does that remind you of election time? LOL
    Learn to discern. Listen to what people are saying.
    Nominees need to be held accountable.
    Preachers need to be held accountable.

    April 24, 2012 09:17 pm at 9:17 pm |
  16. gonzodon

    Woe to those who add or take away from the Word.

    Mormonism clearly adds much to the Bible. Additionally, the Mormon Bible has undergone at least eight significant revisions over the years. The real Word is unchanging (differing translations are NOT changes).

    These revisions are different than just translations.

    Therefore, Romney is NOT a Christian. Sorry.

    That being said, Obama clearly does not lead as a Christian. His strong promotion of abortion, beginning with his issuance of Executive Order promoting abortion worldwide on his first full day in office, and his strong promotion of the gay agenda and values fly in the face of Christ's values.

    All in all, Romney is preferable to Obama in promoting Christian values.

    April 24, 2012 09:18 pm at 9:18 pm |
  17. Rick in Phx

    Lets just say the republican party has a huge problem on their hands. To put Obama's faith at the forefront of every conversation for the last three years and condemn the democrats who responded that religion does not belong in politics kind of makes you laugh and realize that karma appears to have a great sense of humor.

    April 24, 2012 09:22 pm at 9:22 pm |
  18. Jared Bradshaw

    Mormonism is a cult, period.

    April 24, 2012 09:31 pm at 9:31 pm |
  19. W.G.

    WELL ..... somebady made a BIG donation today .Osteen never went to a seminary . He´s a motivational speaker .
    He hardly quotes from the Bible . Mormons believe that Jesus and lucifer ( satan) were brothers . Mormons
    may believe Jesus is the Son of GOD but they do not believe HE is GOD . Which is the cornerstone of real
    Christian faith . Unless i guess you ask Osteen .

    April 24, 2012 09:42 pm at 9:42 pm |
  20. MySay500

    It appears that Osteen does not have good common sense. Pontius Pilate had more sense than Osteen. It is so wrong to try to influence your congregation to vote for any one based on your belief.

    There must be a separation between politics and religion.

    April 24, 2012 09:42 pm at 9:42 pm |
  21. Archangel Michael

    There are many, many people who refer to themselves as "Christians" who won't be making the final cut because they spent more time worrying that someone else wasn't "Christian" enough, while losing sight of their own failure to reach the objective. The ONLY one you can SAVE is YOU. Spend more time living God's commandments and you won't have time to worry about whether or not everyone else is keeping up or not.

    April 24, 2012 09:42 pm at 9:42 pm |
  22. Phil Bennet

    These republicans will do everything to get their man elected, even outright lie about the connection between the mormon faith and christian faith.

    Sad, really sad.

    April 24, 2012 09:43 pm at 9:43 pm |
  23. joe

    Well, alrighty then, that settles it. J.O. has spoken. Wait till Joel finds out what else Romney and his fellow Mormons believe. LOL

    April 24, 2012 09:46 pm at 9:46 pm |
  24. Scamtannehill

    Who was that said ? "It is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to go through the gates of heaven"

    April 24, 2012 09:48 pm at 9:48 pm |
  25. Tell the truth

    mormon's believe Jesus is one god of many. ask a mormon about all the other god's. Also a mormon believes he can become a god. These god's the mormons worship live on other planets and rule the worlds.

    April 24, 2012 09:49 pm at 9:49 pm |
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