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. terry24015

    This is so stupid. Fighting over religion in the United States. It's ugly.

    April 24, 2012 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  2. Another Day in the RW Idiot MInes

    It's pretty bizarre the nation is even having this discussion. The only cult anyone should worry about is the GOBP cult of caring for the greedy and not the needy.

    April 24, 2012 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  3. Independent Voters

    When Romney come to Liberty Univ I wondering would the students walkout of the graduation when come on the stage.
    Romney is not a Christain.

    April 24, 2012 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  4. Dirk the Daring

    "In religion
    what damned error but some sober brow
    will bless it and approve it with a text
    Hiding the grossness with fair ornament."

    From "Merchant of Venice"

    April 24, 2012 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  5. Barry G.


    The Jesus I follow taught that it would be easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven.

    Romney and the Mormon church teach the opposite.

    Joel: Do you believe what Jesus taught about riches and the kingdom of heaven?

    Do you believe what Jesus taught: That anyone who follows him must deny themselves, take up their cross and follow him?

    Or do you and Mitt believe in a health and wealth gospel?

    Jesus didn't believe this.

    The Apostle Paul didn't believe this.

    James didn't believe this.

    What in the world are you teaching?

    April 24, 2012 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  6. Cedar Rapids

    Didnt Koresh and the Branch Dividians also call themselves christians?

    April 24, 2012 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  7. Zil Zerimar

    Osteen by now you should know who Mitt Romney is. He will say anything just to please everybody. According to the mormon teaching Jesus Christ is not the Son of God. So if Mitt Romney say otherwise, it is either he is lying for you (Osteen) to believe him or he is no longer a Mormon. But when did he change religion? Do you know, Osteen? Osteen, Mitt Romney will even say that you (Osteen) is Jesus Christ himself in order for you to vote for him. For Mitt Romney anything goes for him to win the election. One day he will say that he is not only Hispanic but also African-American.

    April 24, 2012 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  8. Orwell knows

    GOP #1
    GOD #2
    Priorities affirmed, vote as told.

    April 24, 2012 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  9. JuanVonDinklus

    Wonder how big of donation Romney made to Osteen's church?

    April 24, 2012 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  10. Hangtownie

    One thing for sure – Romney believes in Profits.

    April 24, 2012 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  11. Timothy

    Osteen is a feel-good, prosperity preacher, who won't ever say anything that could exclude donations from any significant portion of his viewers.

    Osteen is more of a motivational speaker, than a preacher, guaging from his "sermons" they start off with one or two scripture references, then proceed on to the feel good message.

    People give more money when they are told it's OK to do whatever – People give less to hear the hell fire and brimstone baptist preachers.

    So that someone who profits off of his propersity message, he would agree with Romney's economics – do whatever you can to make a buck.

    So to be called a Christian by Osteen, who sold himself out a long time ago to the almight dollar – isn't credible.

    April 24, 2012 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  12. clubschadenfreude

    well, true Christians time to pony up with the miraacles your savior said you could do. But seeing that your own bible goes agaisntn what Osteen preaches e.g. "god wants you to be greedy" that could be a problem with his vouching for a Mormon who has an even more ridiculous set of stories. Just google "mormon anti-christ" and see all of the Christian love out there.

    April 24, 2012 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  13. Jaime

    Sure, and Satan is Jesus brother born of the same mother who was impregnated by god in a physical form, who lives on a planet with his wife?? interesting. And where the Bible and the Book of Mormon conflict -the Book of Mormon is accurate and the Bible not so as the translations are incorrect. It does get interesting. google it, I might not have it all totally accurate but more so than not. google it.

    April 24, 2012 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  14. Wastrel

    "Romney is a Christian." Well, that's too bad if it means that he will bring Christian ideas into government. That's not the American way.

    April 24, 2012 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  15. JoJo

    In my opinion, Romney is NOT a Christian, not because he's a Mormon, but because he's a ChristianIST. Chistians believe in charity and loving their enemies, fundamental principles of Jesus's teachings, and only resort to violence in last resort self-defense. Christianists believe in greed and in unnecessary mass violence e.g., warfare that violates Christian Just War Criteria as the "pre-emptive war of choice" in Iraq did according to most leading Christians.

    “I have a new term for those on the fringes of the religious right who have used the Gospels to perpetuate their own aspirations for power, control and oppression: ‘Christianists’. They are as anathema to true Christians as the Islamists are to true Islam." Andrew Sullivan, British conservative, Catholic columnist

    April 24, 2012 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |

    Joel will lose ALL credibility dealing with politics. He needs to stay away from this disingenuous Mitt Romney

    April 24, 2012 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  17. Arleen

    When the book of the mormons is prefered over the Bible, that's not Christian. When you profess Christ as your savior, then you're a Christian not a mormon – a follower of Joseph Smith !

    April 24, 2012 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  18. a huh....

    Yesterday it was "Romney's Mexican roots" today he is "deemed a christian" It so obvious how media is used to influence the masses.

    April 24, 2012 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  19. Luke Brown

    You can't be a Mormon, much less a high ranking one like Mittens, without subscribing to the Mormon faith... and the Mormon faith does not accept Jesus as the Son of God.

    Joel is a sweet boy, who loves to please. But not even he can turn water into wine.

    Nice try, Joel, but no one is buying it.

    April 24, 2012 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  20. Jim

    Romney is going to get flack from Evangelicals in that he isn't anti-gay or pro-fetus enough for them.

    Early on in his Presidency, George W. Bush was on a path to appease the Evangelicals, but then 9/11 happened; hence, some Evangelicals thought George W. Bush betrayed them.

    I have worked for and with Mormons before, and I have worked with and for Evangelicals before. While the Mormons in general wanted me to be less worldly in my personal life, as long as I did my job, they didn't get in my face about my personal life. Contrast that to the Evangelicals who almost daily tried to get in my face about my personal life, to the point where I finally threatened a lawsuit against the offending parties.

    April 24, 2012 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  21. Pwayne

    Joel Osteen is a false teacher....who teaches a prosperity gospel which is contrary to the teaching of Jesus...a wolf in sheep's clothing......Romney is a Mormon and they do not believe that Jesus is the Second Person of the Trinity....they believe he is the brother of Lucifer....They do not believe that Christ paid the price for our sins in Full but believe that their good works plus a little help get them to heaven...which is not Christian doctrine....Osteen is not a Christian and neither is Romney.,Joseph Smith was a person of questionable character and the Book of Mormon is a total work of fiction.

    April 24, 2012 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  22. Dick Cheney is the smegma of mankind!

    But, Joey, I thought Mormons thought God lived on Uranus?


    April 24, 2012 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  23. Anonymous

    Do all christians wear magic underpants?

    April 24, 2012 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  24. TrueIndependent

    Too many people "check the box" to be a christian. It's about having a relationship with our lord and savior Jesus Christ and living a life that would be glorifying to God. If you are spitting hate from either side, please back up and take a minute. The bible does allow you to judge if you "first take the log out of your own eye before removing the speck out of your brother's eye". I will continue to pray for our current president but can't vote for anyone that supports acts that are against the bible's teachings. If Romney flops back to his previous viewpoint, I will vote him out in 4 yrs. Please everyone, love and respect others when you 'tag yourself' as a christian. The bad actions of "christians" are what has given the faith a bad name. The path is small and few shall pass lets you know that not all that "check the box" are real in the faith. As he stated, he will say "I never knew you". I love and encourage you and asks that we all pray for this county and the path it's on regardless of who wins this election......

    April 24, 2012 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  25. Orwell knows

    Does this mean Romney is a Christian bishop?

    Can vote for a cleric for congress, not happening for POTUS.
    Priest, bishop, or pope, not got my vote.

    April 24, 2012 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
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