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. rich

    Mormons believe in an infinite progression of gods. They believe that the God we worship was once a man who served under a god who was once a man and so on into the past. They do not believe Jesus is God but rather simply a literal son of God. Their concept of the blood atonement of Christ is not Christian. This is common knowledge to anyone who has looked into these things. If you want to elect a Mormon that's your right but Romney is not a Christian. OSTEEN IS EITHER A CHARLATAN OR JUST STUPID. Worse he is leading 1000's astray by loose uninformed or deceitful remarks such as these.

    April 25, 2012 02:46 am at 2:46 am |
  2. MrNirom

    @ Billy Baseball

    Yes.. Mormons believe that Jesus Christ created the Heavens and the Earth.. so you are incorrect in thinking that we don't. If you want to know what Mormons believe.. ask one.

    April 25, 2012 02:49 am at 2:49 am |
  3. Stephen Buck

    To Advin : You brought up several points, most of them are assertion that have been answered many times before. Let’s review some verse that you referenced and see how they may be looked at differently.
    149326722 chapter you would see Moses faults Israel for worshiping multiple gods, gods plural. Jehovah was telling them he is not as the Egyptians believed, a god that comes to them in different forms and manners of worship.
    Jehovah also says many times in the OT that besides be there is no Savior and in every case he is saying he is not like the pagan gods which are mentioned in that chapter.
    Persons that believe there is only one God must ask who died on the Cross was in God the Father or Christ? If you have scriptural references please bring them forth. And please do not referrer to the Nicene Creed. It is extra biblical
    John 14: 9 What might be another version of this verse? If you believe in the oneness of the father and the son how could Christ be standing there with a physical body and look the same as his Father in Heaven, when as you believe as most Conservative Protestant that the Father is a Spirit that dwells everywhere. Maybe the Father and the Son are the express image of each other; both have physical bodies.
    John 1:1 Again think about your interpretation again. You believe God to be eternal, without beginning, yet Christ was with the Father in the beginning. What beginning are you referring to ???
    Hew. 1: 8 I guess you are saying the Father is saying the Son is God. Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints believe this also. Christ is God. But that does not make them the same person. Please read the next verse (9) says “therefore God even they God hath anointed thee”. Are you really saying Christ anointed himself and was honoring himself? Such nonsense!!

    April 25, 2012 03:35 am at 3:35 am |
  4. stephen zeber

    mormonism is not christian and their Jesus christ is not the christ of the bible !! Osteen should talk .... his church is about feeling good and a cult as well !

    April 25, 2012 03:58 am at 3:58 am |
  5. Elizabeth

    And thats why i m not for religion and politics mixing up. If the candidate is a xtian praise God. But when if he mess up dont blame the whole Christianity for it!

    April 25, 2012 04:01 am at 4:01 am |
  6. L McDaniel

    Who cares what his religion is? What does that have to do with anything?

    April 25, 2012 04:14 am at 4:14 am |
  7. watergirl

    I believe in the freedom of religion. Mormons have the right to believe whatever they want to believe in.
    Mormons reject the Christian belief of the Holy Trinity. They believe in the Godhead, that each one of them God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit are each a god. Three distinct beings that share a common purpose. They believe in multiple gods, not just one God as Christians do.
    They believe that God is an exalted man who live here on earth.
    I don't think Osteen even knows what Mormons believe in.

    April 25, 2012 04:15 am at 4:15 am |
  8. Aidan Stewart

    I must take a stand in defending Joseph Smiths name. The lies propagated by people who have only heard and love to hate anything good must not be allowed to stand without correction. I do not intend to get into contention with anyone about any issue, suffice it to say that Joseph Smith was called of God to restore the Church of his Son Jesus Christ on this Earth in its fullness. I have to laugh when I hear people say that " Mormons " are or are not Christians, when the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is His Church, Jesus Christs, Mormons is a nickname given to the members of Christs Church, because of the Latter Day Scripture contained in the Book of Mormon, who was a Prophet, Army Commander, and Church record historian who lived in the Americas, circa 400AD. The Book of Mormon covers the period from 600BC to 400AD.

    April 25, 2012 04:19 am at 4:19 am |
  9. Famed Pastor?

    I do not know anything personal about this man and frankly as a former minister's wife, I become very concerned when so many Americans follow one individual with such unfailing dedication as if he or she were The Beginning and End All, the Alpha and Omega.

    Therefore, I would take this person's opinion as what it is – one singular American's opinion.

    Trust your instincts, they are usually correct.

    April 25, 2012 04:21 am at 4:21 am |
  10. Aidan Stewart

    I should relate that Mormon was the name of the Prophet who edited, i.e.. took from many records of the Prophets and compiled them onto plates of Gold.These Golden Plates were handed to Joseph Smith by an Angel of God and he translated them into English by the Power of the Holy Ghost.

    April 25, 2012 04:23 am at 4:23 am |
  11. Obama 2012

    Just can't take a man who believes in magic underwear and golden tablets seriously.

    April 25, 2012 04:47 am at 4:47 am |
  12. Obama 2012

    Companion book? Are people crazy? who believes in this?

    April 25, 2012 04:53 am at 4:53 am |
  13. Spencer

    I'm LDS and I've always liked Osteen.

    April 25, 2012 05:03 am at 5:03 am |
  14. Richard

    Well, well, well. Its the new hip Republican theology. Throw those old standards and people such as the Council of Nicea and Saints Augustine, and Aquinas, as well as Martin Luther, and John Calvin onto the trash heap and top it all off with the Doctrine of the Trinity. Osteen remakes Christianity. I'm sure God in heaven is pleased after so many centuries of ignorance.

    April 25, 2012 05:10 am at 5:10 am |
  15. bryjon

    It seems there are a lot of people on this board who have placed themselves in the position of our supreme judge to determine for us all as to who is a Christian. Many have their little lists of questions that must be answered in the right way in order to meet their narrow definition of who is a Christian. My questions are: Who made you God? Since when is anyone required to follow YOUR narrow definition of Christianity?

    April 25, 2012 05:13 am at 5:13 am |
  16. Cayman Islands

    Wow. So conservatives think that President Obama, who is a faithful Christian is not a Christian. And they think mittens the mormon somehow is a Christian. Wow.

    Read the history of the mormon faith. Read what they have said for 150 years about their religion and it's relation to Christianity. mormons are not Christians. That FACT does not disqualify mittens – his politions and his incessant lying are plenty good enough for that. But if you are a Christian, especially a supposed leader in the Christian faith, do not lie to you yourself and your flock by pretending that mittens is a Christian, or that mormons are Christians, just because you happen to like his 13th century social views.

    April 25, 2012 05:39 am at 5:39 am |
  17. Cayman Islands

    romney saying he is Christian is about as useful as about anything he says. Mormons have in recent years been on a big push to pretend they are Christians. For those of us who are Christian that would be the "false prophets" the Bible talks about. Mormonism holds that it alone is the true faith. And it's doctrine, scriptures, and it's dogma are definitively NOT Christian. Period. It is not a matter of debate. It is as clear as daylight in the afternoon. No grey areas. If you claim otherwise you have no clue what mormonism is. Period.

    Like I said – no religious tests for office. But mittens claiming he is Christian is just another example of his strategy of lying 24/7 non stop to cloud the issues and hide the FACT that he is uniquely unqualified to be president. Or even dog catcher.

    April 25, 2012 05:42 am at 5:42 am |
  18. Donna

    Romney believes in religious freedom which is more than what I can say for Obama!

    April 25, 2012 05:44 am at 5:44 am |
  19. works4me

    Yea... he's a Christian when he needs to be for that particular moment, then flips the next time.

    April 25, 2012 05:56 am at 5:56 am |
  20. Ivywoods

    Joel Osteen is not a traditional Christian himself, isn't he a Jevoah Witness? I heard long ago that Joel was a Jevoah Witness, which is also different from mainstream Christianity. So if, he is, this would explain why he has made this statement. These folks believe that as long as you stand before God and denounce abortion, then all is well with Him, they do not understand that the Bible is a muti-fold book which deals with the love of money, education, racism, and many other social ills...and guess why, these greedy and adulterous folks do not care....it's all about the money with them...not feeding the poor, or following the teachings of Christ. For four years the President has stated that he is a Christian, but none of these self-righteous hypocrites would speak out because he is for the poor and down-trodden, but now they speak out for a greedy and rich loving, racist hypocrite. yeah, I believe that we will see a change in November, but it won't be Mitt taking over the presidency, it will be a lot of hypocritical Christians repenting for the lies and distortions they have made concerning this President. He isn't a Christian, even though he has professed to being one, but a rich racist cult member is a Christian...lol..lol..lol..that is too, too, RICH!

    April 25, 2012 06:07 am at 6:07 am |
  21. Don

    Now is the time for all members of the GOP and those that vote Republican to give up their rights to all principled arguments. Mitt Romney is the exact opposite of everything they have ever believed in. The etch a sketch candidate now owns the etch a sketch party.

    April 25, 2012 06:09 am at 6:09 am |
  22. EMcK

    Interesting – so a Mormon is a Christian, but someone who has attended a Christian church for most of his life is not. Mormons practice an acceptable form of Christianity, but a Christian church whose primary difference from Orsten's teachings is a belief in the rights of gay people is not.

    Ah yes, double-standards, who would have expected it?

    April 25, 2012 06:15 am at 6:15 am |
  23. Marie MD

    Another talking "godhead". All of the sudden all these so-called bible thumping "christians" are all for the flip flopper. They don't like him and these "christians" abhor the mormons because of their religious beliefs and how dare them think with that magic underwear that they all get their own planets.

    April 25, 2012 06:18 am at 6:18 am |
  24. hubert39

    Christians are good because the Bible tells then to be good. People who are not religious are good because it common sense to be good. Why is religion important in politics?
    99% of all politicans are religious. Look at their ratings.

    April 25, 2012 06:32 am at 6:32 am |
  25. odk1

    mormon is a cult and that is a truth,but it does not disqualify a man from running for the president, i just dont like Romney because he is a fake.

    April 25, 2012 06:38 am at 6:38 am |
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