TMZ reports that Osteen will deliver a message and West and his choir will provide the music at the 54,000-plus seat stadium. The event will be held on May 2, and details are still being ironed out.
Lakewood confirmed the report to Christian News Network on Thursday. It will be Osteen’s third appearance and West’s first.
West recently appeared at Lakewood Church, as he spoke to attendees of the 11 a.m. service, explaining his journey, his upbringing, and his desire to record a gospel album. He also defended Osteen to a standing ovation.
“There’s a lot of people in the Christian community that try to give Joel a hard time because when you turn on the radio, he keeps on showing you how good God is,” West said to much applause, with many standing to their feet. “God is not the enemy. God is not the negative part. God is not just the perception of fire and brimstone.”
“God is love, is the greatest, is the glory,” he continued. “God is family. God is friendship. God is prosperity. … Keep your eye on the beauty and the love and the grace of God. The grace that allows us to be here today with all of our sins. We know that when we accept Jesus as our lord and savior, we will be granted eternal life.”
Osteen, smiling, quipped in response, “That’s so good. I love that. When you’ve got Kanye defending you, you’ve made it, man.”
West and his choir also performed at the 7 p.m. young adult service, packing out the 16,000 seat facility.
The Grammy award winner, previously known for profane and/or blasphemous hits such as “I Am a God,” “I Love It,” “All Mine” and “Monster,” presented songs from his new album “Jesus Is King,” such as “Follow God,” “God Is,” “Closed on Sunday,” as well as a sanitized version of “Jesus Walks” from his 2004 album “The College Dropout.”
West has been holding weekly “Sunday Service” gatherings across the country throughout 2019, featuring various speakers from Hillsong New York’s hipster pastor Carl Lentz to Los Angeles-area preacher Adam Tyson, a graduate of John MacArthur’s Master’s Seminary.
MacArthur has expressed concern over Osteen’s lack of teaching on sin and holiness, presenting man-centered messages about making positive confessions over one’s life that are more akin to the New Age “Law of Attraction.”
“Learn to speak blessings over your life, your friends, your future,” Osteen writes in his book “Your Best Life Now.” “Remember, a blessing is not a blessing until it is spoken. If you’ll do your part and start boldly speaking blessings over your life and the lives of those around you, God will provide everything you need to live the life of abundance he wants you to have.”
Other books published by Osteen include “Become a Better You,” “You Can, You Will, ” “It’s Your Time” and “The Power of I Am.”
Contrarily, West had proclaimed at a recent Sunday Service event that he had been deceived by the devil in pursuing material wealth and financial prosperity.
“The devil had me chasing a gold statue. Had me chasing cars, had me chasing numbers,” he said. “[But] the power of God cannot be calculated by a number, by a first week sale, by a bank account, by how many cars you drive, by how big your house is, by how many acres you got.”
West also stated during a concert in Jamaica that one of his favorite Scriptures is Mark 1:15, where Jesus said, “Repent and believe the gospel.”
Like MacArthur, a number of Christians have expressed concern over Osteen as his messages are devoid of preaching on topics such as repentance, eternal judgment or sanctification and are rather focused on what one can get from God and how one should make declarations of themselves being blessed, favored, prosperous, and attractive.
“You’ve been criticized for church-lite or a cotton candy message. Do you feel like you’re cheating people by not telling them about the Hell part? Or repentance part?” CBS asked the megachurch speaker and author in 2016.
“No, I really don’t, because it’s a different approach,” Osteen replied. “You know, it’s not Hellfire and brimstone. But I say most people are beaten down enough by life. They already feel guilty enough. … So I want [people] to come to Lakewood or our meetings and be lifted up, to say, ‘You know what? I may not be perfect, but I’m moving forward. I’m doing better.’ And I think that motivates you to do better.”
In 2013, during an interview with the Huffington Post, Osteen also explained his preaching philosophy, stating that Christians should exemplify kindness to the world rather than “pushing people down” by telling them about their sins.
“Again, the Scripture teaches the way people are going to know His disciples is for our love for one another, and so, I’m not preaching hate [or] pushing people down,” he stated. “I’m not here to tell everybody what they’re doing wrong.”
As previously reported, a spokesperson for Lakewood told Christian News Network that Osteen and West are friends, and that West contacted Osteen to see if he could perform at the megachurch upon learning that he was going to be in Houston that week.
Acts 20:27-31 reads, “For I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God. Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which He hath purchased with His own blood. … [R]emember that by the space of three years I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears.”
1 Timothy 6:5 also speaks of those who would teach that “gain is godliness,” instructing, “from such withdraw thyself.”