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PIERS MORGAN TONIGHT

Piers Morgan Interviews Joel and Victoria Osteen

Aired January 26, 2011 - 21:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


PIERS MORGAN, HOST: Joel Osteen is the nearest thing to a Christian rock star America has. He recently played to a sellout Yankee stadium crowd which makes him officially the A-Rod of religion.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIPS)

JOEL OSTEEN, SENIOR PASTOR, LAKEWOOD CHURCH: If you're going to become everything God has created you be, you got to remove a label that's holding you back.

I first came to know Piers watching "The Apprentice." And even though he lied and cheated his way to the top, we were still pulling for him. We love Piers.

VICTORIA OSTEEN, CO-PASTOR, LAKEWOOD CHURCH: Yes, we do.

(END VIDEO CLIPS)

MORGAN: Preachers want everybody to be wealthy, healthy and happy. Is that actually the gospel truth?

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

J. OSTEEN: God bless you.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MORGAN: It's going to be hard being Joel Osteen, isn't it? He must be the squeakiest, cleanest guy in America. Or is he?

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIPS)

V. OSTEEN: I believe that God wants us to show respect.

J. OSTEEN: No matter what happens in the next hour, I'm willing to still continue to pray for Piers.

What a joy it is to be with you tonight. We love you, guys.

(END VIDEO CLIPS)

(MUSIC)

MORGAN: Joel, Victoria, welcome.

J. OSTEEN: Thank you. MORGAN: I feel like you've brought this kind of holy aura to my studio today. So I'm -- I want to thank you for that.

V. OSTEEN: Good.

J. OSTEEN: It's an honor to be here.

MORGAN: It feels a happier, better place suddenly.

J. OSTEEN: Well, thank you.

V. OSTEEN: Oh, that's nice.

MORGAN: Well, here's the thing. When I -- when I first came to America a few years ago, I turned on my television in my hotel room, and the very first face I saw in America was you, Joel Osteen.

And it was like the Osmonds had been reborn. You were in this like huge church with this amazing audience all going crazy. And there you were -- like this sort of shiny, perfect guy saying these extraordinary things all from memory, very charismatic, very inspiring. And so, I was sort of hooked on the Joel Osteen bug straight away. And I've watched you on and off ever since.

But you have that affect. You are, as -- as I said at the top of this show, you are a kind of rock star, aren't you?

J. OSTEEN: You know, I never think of it that way, Piers. I mean, 12 years ago I was -- I had never spoken in public before. So, this is all relatively new to me. So, you know, it's just -- it's amazed me of the blessings and the favor. I mean, when my dad died and I took over, I never dreamed people would watch me.

Matter of fact, the first thing we did -- my dad had a television program. We canceled that because I thought I'm not going to get on. Nobody is going to watch me on television. But --

V. OSTEEN: That's the truth.

J. OSTEEN: She talked -- she talked me into it. And then the -- then the ministry took off. So, it's -- it's amazed us.

MORGAN: I'm looking at (INAUDIBLE). This is your emporium -- your weekly -- I don't know what you call it. It's not -- it's not really -- this is not a service, is it? What do you call it?

J. OSTEEN: Well, we call it a service. It -- it meets in the former Compaq Center where the Houston Rockets used to play basketball. But --

MORGAN: No, but I'm a good Irish Catholic boy. And you know, when I was young I went to church. It was nothing like this.

J. OSTEEN: No.

MORGAN: I mean, when I went it was very quiet -- J. OSTEEN: Yes.

MORGAN: -- very serious. There were about 100 people, and the priest was normally, you know, pretty old, couldn't hear us, and it was very, very uncharismatic. When I see those scenes --

J. OSTEEN: Yes.

MORGAN: -- in Lakewood, it's extraordinary. It's like watching a rock band.

J. OSTEEN: It is. It's -- it's a different day, Piers. I mean, it's -- our services and many others -- it's more of a celebration.

We don't come to -- you know, we're reverent, we're holy. But we believe in celebrating that God is good. And so, the music you will hear -- it's got drums and band, and there's lights and there's people that are happy.

And, you know -- and I want people to leave that day, you know, inspired. And say, you know what? I'm going to have a better week because I honored God.

MORGAN: You see -- well, I feel like that when I go to see the Stones. So, I'm right about -- no.

I mean -- Victoria, what do you think when you watch him up there in the pulpit doing his thing? You must think, wow. Look at -- look at my husband.

V. OSTEEN: I do. I am his biggest fan.

MORGAN: He's rocking it today.

V. OSTEEN: He is. You know, the thing is is he makes it look so easy. But the truth is he works really, really hard. And he dedicates himself and he focus -- focuses himself on what he's going to say. And it's very important to him. Everything that he says he takes it really serious.

MORGAN: How -- how did you come up with the -- it's 15 minutes each week.

J. OSTEEN: Yes -- no. It's about 30 -- about 25 -- 25.

MORGAN: Twenty-five minutes?

J. OSTEEN: Yes.

MORGAN: So you have a 25 minute address which you memorize, right?

J. OSTEEN: I do. I do.

MORGAN: Do you ever use notes?

J. OSTEEN: Well, I write -- I type what I'm going to say. But I have a good memory. If I go over it a few hours I can get it --

MORGAN: I watch you, it's extraordinary.

J. OSTEEN: Yes.

MORGAN: You mainly wander around and you're -- and you seem so on top of it. I've seen very few people that can do that on a consistent basis.

J. OSTEEN: You know, my mother had a great memory. And I've found with your memory, the more you use it, the better it gets. I mean, it's easier for me today 10 years later, you know, you get it down in you.

But, you know what? I type like I'm going to talk. And I just -- I try to focus on -- I feel like my gift is helping people to live a victorious life -- the Christian life.

You know, every -- making the scripture practical for us today. And not -- not just me, but plenty of others do it. But I think that's what causes people to come out because, you know, when you talk about how to have a good attitude in a down economy, or how do you, you know, how do you have peace in the midst of a lot of turmoil? So, you know, everyday life issues.

MORGAN: Well, what makes you different? How are you different to other preachers? Why have you emerged as the -- the big telegenic superstar do you think of this genre?

J. OSTEEN: You know, I don't know. I don't know. You know, it -- it still amazes me because there are certainly ministers that have more experience and they've been -- you know, they're maybe more educated or more talented. But I don't know.

You know, I think -- I think some of it, Piers, is I'm reaping the seeds my parents sowed 40 years there pastoring the church. And I think a lot of the blessings I'm receiving is because my parents stayed faithful there for so many years.

MORGAN: What is the state of America spiritually right now, do you think?

J. OSTEEN: Well, I'm an optimist. And -- and I see it -- when we travel from city to city we see stadiums filled with people that are hungry for faith, hungry for hope. And when I grew up, Piers, a -- a church of 1,000 was a big, big deal, you know?

My dad -- I remember when he had that -- when he hit that mark. But today, there are churches all over that have thousands and thousands. So, I think the faith in America is at an all time high, really all over the world.

MORGAN: Well, I've heard contradictory reports --

J. OSTEEN: Yes. MORGAN: -- on this. I've read that actually a lot of these figures are misleading. That actually when people count people coming out of American churches, it would seem that attendances are falling. But the impression given is they're actually on the up. What do you think is the reality?

J. OSTEEN: You know, I see it both ways. I've seen that -- some of those -- some of those studies. But I see churches like ours that are relevant and practical. I see them growing.

I have friends that have churches all over the -- you know, some of the -- you know, I don't mean this wrong -- but some of the -- you know, traditional churches that have not changed. I think they've kind of -- some of those have peaked out.

But I see others growing.

MORGAN: When you play -- you play this extraordinary gig. Let's call it a gig at the Yankee Stadium -- unprecedented really. When you -- when you did that what was going through your mind? I mean, obviously the enormity of it was not lost on you.

J. OSTEEN: No. You know what --

MORGAN: Look at -- here. Here you are.

J. OSTEEN: You know --

MORGAN: This is normally a baseball stadium. And there you are -- Joel Osteen --

J. OSTEEN: It's a --

MORGAN: -- preaching your message.

J. OSTEEN: It -- it was very overwhelming. It's very humbling for me when I go out and stand in front of people. And I think I don't even know these people, how do they have some type of connection with me.

So, I feel very humbled and very rewarded. And it makes me want to do better. It makes me want to say -- every word that I say make sure that it counts, because you know, people are listening.

MORGAN: Tell me this. America currently is at war in various countries. We have the shocking incident in Arizona. What do you think is the state of America -- that's -- I guess spiritually just as a country right now? Do you feel content when you see all this going on? Do you feel that America needs to change its direction?

J. OSTEEN: I think in -- in one sense that we do need to change in -- like has been talked about a lot now -- to let go a little bit of the anger.

To me, it's OK to have differences. But we don't have to be mad about it. You know? And I think that's where sometimes we get so passionate that we -- you know, it turns into anger. And I don't like you because you don't agree just exactly with me.

And that's not what makes our country great. And so I'd like to say, you know what? We can be civil. We can still be friends, and be Democrats and Republicans, and have different views.

MORGAN: Most wars have a religious undertone to them? It's one of the contradictions of religion. Something that's supposed to bring you hope and harmony and peace often has a completely direct affect, doesn't it?

J. OSTEEN: It does. And it's been like that for years. You know, back -- when you read back to -- stories in the Bible.

So, you know, I don't know what it is. I think people are so passionate about their religion as well. And --

MORGAN: But is that healthy? You see, when I watch your audiences getting whipped up -- first playing devil's advocate quite literally, I would say that sometimes when you see somebody being overzealous -- too extreme, whatever the religion. Whether they are Muslim, they're Christian -- whatever it may be. It feels a little edgy, a little dangerous when you see that.

How do you -- how do you deal with that? Do you try and calm people down?

J. OSTEEN: No. I think when you say "whipped up," I want them to go out excited about life. Go out. Be excited this week about being a blessing to somebody else. Meet somebody else's needs.

So, I see it not -- you know, not being excited to go out and beat somebody down and push my religion down their throat. Go out and be a light. Go out and buy somebody's dinner.

So, you know, I see it -- I see it in that sense -- lifting others.

MORGAN: Yes, but what -- what do you do if you sense that people are using religion -- Christianity say -- to be violent? What do you do as a preacher of such influence?

J. OSTEEN: You know, my encouragement would always be to obviously not use violence, to be peaceful. I mean -- I mean -- I mean, God gave us two -- two commands: love God and love our brothers.

And so, no matter how much we disagree, we all -- we are always for taking the high road. We're not here to condemn people, and --

MORGAN: Do you think politicians should back off the -- the more violent rhetoric when they whip people up; when they get very, very angry. And it appears -- whoever they are, whether they're political figures, they're commentators -- usually on American television, a lot of people are too angry.

J. OSTEEN: Well, this is just my personal views -- is I don't like the anger. I don't think that it's healthy. I think it's -- you can be passionate and you can be firm. But I don't like to breed anger in the -- or anybody else. I like to -- where more it's being passionate. But just don't cross the lines.

MORGAN: Passionate, but not violent --

J. OSTEEN: Yes.

MORGAN: -- is the way you speak?

J. OSTEEN: Exactly.

MORGAN: In a moment, the extraordinary and tragic story behind Joel's rise to become America's rock star preacher.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

J. OSTEEN: This is my Bible. I am what it says I am. I have what it says I have. I can do what it says I can do. Today, I will be --

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MORGAN: So, what was it like growing up as the son of a preacher man?

J. OSTEEN: You know what? It was really great, because my parents were the same in the pulpit as they were at home. They were loving, they were caring, and we had a fun childhood. It wasn't overly spiritual I would say. It's just -- you know, I grew up playing sports and my parents supported me, and was just a lot of fun.

MORGAN: Were you allowed to be a naughty boy, Joel?

J. OSTEEN: You know, I didn't -- I never -- I never got off into drugs. I never got off into, you know, rebellious --

MORGAN: Never tried any of that stuff?

J. OSTEEN: I never did. I never have --

MORGAN: Do you drink?

J. OSTEEN: I never drank. No.

MORGAN: You never drink alcohol?

J. OSTEEN: Still don't.

MORGAN: Never had a drop?

J. OSTEEN: Never had. Never had.

MORGAN: Not even a tiny, little drop?

J. OSTEEN: I think, I --

MORGAN: Sneak in the back of the bike shed?

J. OSTEEN: You know, one time we would --

MORGAN: When your dad wasn't looking, a little drop of cider?

J. OSTEEN: No. I'll tell you a funny story. One time we were on a plane and they gave us a little wine. It was my dad. We were traveling overseas.

And I thought I'm just going to taste this. And I tasted just a sip. And it tasted terrible. We gave -- we gave all our wine to the guys sitting next to us. And by the end of the flight, he was all drunk on my wine.

(LAUGHTER)

J. OSTEEN: But that's the only taste I've ever had of it.

MORGAN: You don't -- you don't miss the thought of what it -- of how good it might be? I mean, I love wine.

J. OSTEEN: Yes.

MORGAN: I could give you a bottle of wine now and it would change your life forever, Joel.

J. OSTEEN: You know, I --

MORGAN: Probably not for the better, but for -- forever.

J. OSTEEN: You know, I don't. I -- you know, I -- we're happy. I just -- I don't feel like I need it. And so, I just -- I just stayed away from it.

MORGAN: Are you -- you the same, Victoria? Do you drink?

V. OSTEEN: Yes. No, we don't drink. No, we don't.

MORGAN: You -- you don't smoke?

V. OSTEEN: No. Don't smoke.

MORGAN: Never taken drugs?

V. OSTEEN: No, don't take drugs.

MORGAN: I mean, you're still the squeakiest, cleanest people I've ever met in my life.

J. OSTEEN: I know. But --

MORGAN: I feel sort of unclean being in front of you.

J. OSTEEN: No.

MORGAN: Like I've got to repent my sins.

J. OSTEEN: That was the goal. No, I'm just kidding. Yes. (LAUGHTER)

MORGAN: But was there -- there was no pressure as a child growing up in that kind of environment? I mean, I -- in my environment -- to give you some idea of the contrast. My parents ran a country pub in England.

J. OSTEEN: Yes.

MORGAN: So, I grew up literally immersed in alcohol. You know, I'd wake up -- you know what a pub is? It's like a bar.

J. OSTEEN: Yes, sure.

MORGAN: And I would literally walk in through beer barrels to breakfast. You know?

J. OSTEEN: Yes.

MORGAN: So, completely different culture that --

J. OSTEEN: Yes.

MORGAN: -- I grew up in.

J. OSTEEN: Yes, absolutely different. It's just -- you know, I never felt any pressure. We were happy. Our parents didn't do it. And so, we just -- again, just grew up a happy family and never needed that.

MORGAN: Well, what values did your father instill in you?

J. OSTEEN: I think he instilled in me several. One: integrity. I always saw my dad take the high road in -- when times that he could, you know, you know, just take the low road. He didn't.

I think the other thing my dad instilled in me: a love for people. He was always for people. He didn't care, black, white, rich, poor, you know, sinner or saint.

MORGAN: But you always have to see the best in people or -- and occasionally, you acknowledge that they're not good people.

J. OSTEEN: Well, I think you can acknowledge it. But I think, you know, my -- my goal is try to bring out the best in them, and help downplay the worst, or help them overcome. I mean, in our church, we see people all the time that -- you know, they're struggling with things. They're not right. You can tell they're -- they've got issues.

But you know what? I just -- you know, it's fine to speak the truth in love. And say, "Listen, you can't keep treating people like this or you're not going to have a marriage." But also you got to say, "But you know what? You can do better, and let me -- let us help you."

MORGAN: Do you believe that everyone is fundamentally good? Or do you believe that some people are simply born evil?

J. OSTEEN: No. I think everybody is a child of God. That we were created in God's image. I think there are many influences. I think there are evil forces. I think there are all kinds of things that can be --

MORGAN: Well, when you see someone like Adolf Hitler?

J. OSTEEN: Yes.

MORGAN: Is there any good in a man like that? Was he born evil do you think?

J. OSTEEN: You know, I don't know. I don't know if I understand it all. I don't think he would be born --

MORGAN: I've heard you in interviews before. You're good at copping out, Joel.

J. OSTEEN: Yes. Well --

MORGAN: You see, it may be a likeable trait.

J. OSTEEN: Yes.

MORGAN: But it's not -- I don't think -- I think in your position of such responsibility and influence.

J. OSTEEN: Yes.

MORGAN: You need to be more determined about these things.

J. OSTEEN: Well, I think my thing is this, Piers. I'm honest enough to say I don't know everything. You know, I don't.

I don't understand all of God. I don't understand, you know, some kind of why bad things happen. And I don't know if I could explain like Adolf Hitler -- about what happened to him or this guy that just shot all the people in --

MORGAN: Yes.

J. OSTEEN: -- Arizona. It -- it's tragic. I think one thing --

MORGAN: Can you forgive the -- the young man --

V. OSTEEN: Yes.

MORGAN: -- that shot the people in Arizona. Do you -- you feel genuine forgiveness towards him?

J. OSTEEN: You know, I may not right now. But I think we have to get to the point -- I think one thing that's helped me, and I try to help others, is look, you have to walk in their shoes.

I don't know where he came from. I don't know what his environment was. I can pretty much doubt that he had a good upbringing.

I -- you know, most of these people we see in prison, they didn't have upbringing like us. They lived out on the street.

So, it's easier to have mercy when you think, you know what? They didn't have a good shot. Let's -- you know, let's do better now.

MORGAN: Right now, you find it hard to forgive him?

J. OSTEEN: No. Well, I feel -- I just feel so bad for everything at -- when I see him smiling that feels like there's no remorse.

MORGAN: See I can imagine there -- there will be religious families involved in that -- in that horror.

J. OSTEEN: Oh, absolutely.

MORGAN: And I can imagine they're going through a difficult thing. And my grandmother said to me she renounced her faith because of the Holocaust. She couldn't understand how a just God would allow that to happen.

The families in Arizona -- I'm sure some of them will be thinking, where was my God when I needed him? And the parents of the little girl that died.

J. OSTEEN: Yes.

MORGAN: When I filmed that heartbreaking interview, it's hard. I mean, it hits your faith hard when you see that happen.

J. OSTEEN: It does. There are plenty of things we can't understand. I don't know that I can explain it right now. I just come back to the fact that I believe that God is good. That He gives us strength in these difficult times.

Even when I experienced the death of my father, you know, and -- and it's not near as tragedy like that. But, you know, and I felt a peace that I'd never felt before.

MORGAN: That was an extraordinary --

J. OSTEEN: Yes.

MORGAN: -- moment in your life. So, your father says to you after years of trying to persuade you, "I need you to do the service. I want you to do this, Joel." And you finally agree. And you do one service, and you are the -- the stand-in pastor. And your father dies the week after.

J. OSTEEN: Yes.

MORGAN: I mean, that's an extraordinary set of circumstances.

J. OSTEEN: It really is. I don't believe there are coincidences in life. Just run and meeting you -- other things. But even my dad tried to get me to minister, get down, preach for 36 years and I told him no. And then I tell him yes. And then five days later he dies.

Well, I believe that was the hand of God orchestrating it all to give me the confidence, the passion, even if it was small to get up there and pastor the church.

So, you know, I didn't know this was in me. I liked being behind the scenes. I mean, I ran the television production. I thought that's what -- we thought that's what we'd do with our life. But you know --

MORGAN: You must really miss your father.

J. OSTEEN: Yes, I -- I do miss my father.

MORGAN: He must have been such a huge influence on you.

J. OSTEEN: He was. We were best friends. We traveled the world together.

I even told Victoria before, "You know, what am I going to do when my dad's gone," just because we were so close. But you know what? What I thought would be my darkest hour -- it really -- it launched me into what I'm doing now.

MORGAN: What was the greatest lesson he taught you?

J. OSTEEN: I think the greatest lesson -- well, I think probably the greatest lesson is just to be true to who you are, to follow your own heart. He never pressured me. Even though he wanted me to get up there and minister, he never pressured me. It's always, "Joel, if that's what you feel good about."

And so, I think that's what's helped me into who I am today. Not trying to copy my father, because he was more of a fireball. He came from a Southern Baptist background.

You know, I'm -- 40 years later, I'm more laid back and easy going.

MORGAN: Did he ever discipline you? Did he ever whack you?

J. OSTEEN: Sure. Sure. When we were young, we got whippings -- whippings --

MORGAN: Really?

J. OSTEEN: Yes.

MORGAN: That doesn't sound very Christian to me.

J. OSTEEN: I know, but --

MORGAN: Yes. Do you -- do you -- do you whack your kids?

J. OSTEEN: We really didn't. We didn't spank our kids much.

MORGAN: Never?

J. OSTEEN: Maybe a couple times. Maybe a couple times, if they --

V. OSTEEN: I did all the spanking.

MORGAN: Really?

V. OSTEEN: I'm the mean one --

(CROSSTALK)

MORGAN: Really, Victoria? We're coming to that in the next section I think. But I mean, seriously. It's quite interesting that you would discipline your kids physically.

J. OSTEEN: Well, you know, we -- I have to say we didn't do a lot of that.

MORGAN: I can't imagine you disciplining people, Joel. You seem too good.

J. OSTEEN: Well, I think a lot of the times -- I mean --

V. OSTEEN: He is. He is a good guy.

MORGAN: Well, what does it take -- let me ask you. I bet you might give me a more honest answer here because he's too nice to tell me. But what would trigger a Joel spanking for the children?

V. OSTEEN: You know what? He's not really physical. And he -- we've been married 24 years. So, it's hard to get him upset, because he's very controlled.

MORGAN: Yes. But what --

V. OSTEEN: But --

MORGAN: -- when does that fuse finally go?

V. OSTEEN: Well, I've really never seen it go. I've never seen it go. Isn't that unbelievable?

MORGAN: Come on, Victoria.

V. OSTEEN: Isn't that unbelievable?

MORGAN: He must have a temper.

V. OSTEEN: He -- this is what I told the kids the other day. I said, "You all we have to hurry, because you know dad will get mad at us if we're not out of this house, getting to school." And I said -- and I think one of my kids said, "What do you mean?" I said, "Well, he just gives me that look that makes me know he's mad at me."

(LAUGHTER)

J. OSTEEN: Yes. You know, I've -- I've never -- my mother has told somebody that she's never seen me angry a day in my life. Not that I don't get angry, but I'm just not real expressive like that.

MORGAN: Do you ever fight?

J. OSTEEN: Like a fist fight?

MORGAN: Yes.

J. OSTEEN: No. I mean --

MORGAN: Never?

J. OSTEEN: Never have. I never have. I grew up playing sports. I would get competitive.

MORGAN: Well, I used to get beaten up all the time.

V. OSTEEN: He's extremely competitive.

MORGAN: Really?

V. OSTEEN: Very competitive.

J. OSTEEN: Yes, I played a lot of sports. And you know, I could play rough or play strong. But I'm not -- well, I'm not going to go cheat somebody or cheat chop them or something like that. No.

(LAUGHTER)

MORGAN: Joel Osteen says that "God wants you to be rich," which is convenient because he's very rich. When we come back, I'll ask the Osteens how they share their wealth.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MORGAN: There's no easy way to put this. But you two are stinking rich. Guilty?

J. OSTEEN: We are guilty. We are guilty, because God blessed us.

MORGAN: You see, the -- what I quite like about it is you're unashamedly rich. And most people in the church who make a lot of money often feel quite guilty, because the traditional kind of Christian sentiment towards wealth and material goods is it's not something you should be coveting.

How do you explain the fact that you feel not only very easy about the money you've got, but you're quite proud of it.

J. OSTEEN: Well, I think, Piers, if I can -- I'll answer that. Let me back up a minute. When I say, "God wants you to be rich," I -- when I -- when I talk about rich, I actually don't -- I say, "God wants you to be blessed." Talking about also rich in good health, in good relationships, in peace, and you've got to have money to pay your bills.

Well, God has blessed us, Piers, more than we could imagine through our books. I mean, I wrote a book. I never knew it would sell.

MORGAN: How many books have you sold?

J. OSTEEN: I think I've sold close to 20 million. You know --

MORGAN: Twenty million books?

J. OSTEEN: That's all the by product and all that stuff. Never dreamed that -- when -- when my publishers --

MORGAN: DVDs?

J. OSTEEN: Well, a lot of those too. I don't know how many --

MORGAN: How many DVDs?

J. OSTEEN: I don't even know a figure. I don't know a figure, but --

MORGAN: Do you know how much you're worth?

J. OSTEEN: I never dwell on it. I never even dwell on it, but --

MORGAN: Can we dwell on it now?

(LAUGHTER)

J. OSTEEN: I wouldn't know the figures. I am --

MORGAN: I mean, look at you. You've got an immaculate suit on.

J. OSTEEN: Thank you.

MORGAN: Very well cut shirt I've noticed.

J. OSTEEN: Well, thank you.

MORGAN: I mean -- sorry. I mean, just a dazzling outfit you have on.

J. OSTEEN: Well, I think one thing when you -- you said -- Piers, it is true. I don't think we have to apologize for God's blessings. But we -- you know, money is not the focus of our life. It never has been.

MORGAN: No. But isn't -- almost -- again, play devil's advocate -- isn't it easy to say that if you're loaded? I mean, most of your parishioners -- the people in the congregation, they don't have anything like this kind of money.

Is it -- is there a contradiction there between saying, you know, "God wants us all to be rich," if actually you're the only rich guy standing there?

J. OSTEEN: Well, again, I don't say that. I say God wants us to be blessed. But if anything, Piers, it's an example to me to say if God did it for us -- I mean, I was working at a church. Where are you going to make the kind of funds that we have made? If God did it for us, God can do it for you. He's an amazing God.

And, too, Piers, I think it's important because I get categorized into this guy that wants everybody to be rich. I'm just saying God wants you to be blessed. He wants you to rise higher.

MORGAN: But do you want me to be rich?

J. OSTEEN: I want you to be rich in health, in relationships. I want you to have plenty of money. I don't want money to be your idol though. I mean --

MORGAN: How much do you think I should have?

J. OSTEEN: You know, I don't know. It's all -- you know, it's all a matter of perspective. I mean, we spend a lot of times overseas in India. And everybody in America is rich. Everybody in my congregation is rich. It's all a matter of, you know, the -- the standards.

And so, I just think that we are -- we are blessed to be a blessing to help others. When you don't make money the focus of your life -- I mean, I think you -- you got to work hard. You develop your talents, but you know what? God can do amazing things.

V. OSTEEN: You know, you can be rich --

(CROSSTALK)

V. OSTEEN: -- and you can be poor at the same time.

J. OSTEEN: Yes.

V. OSTEEN: You can be rich and --

MORGAN: Yes. Well, I -- I've met very unhappy rich people.

V. OSTEEN: That's exactly right.

MORGAN: This is why it seems interesting from the spiritual point of view. And does money buy you happiness? And what would you say, Victoria?

V. OSTEEN: No. I don't think it does. I think money helps us. It helps us. It's our -- it's our exchange system. But it does not buy you happiness. It doesn't buy you health --

MORGAN: But if you should lose all your money? Does --

V. OSTEEN: I'm still going to be happy, because I have a great husband. I have fabulous children. I have people around me who love me and support me. I've got --

MORGAN: Could you be happy and poor though, again?

V. OSTEEN: Absolutely. Absolutely. I mean, when you say, "Happy and poor," I don't look at it like -- when you said, "Oh, you all are rich," I don't feel rich. I just -- I don't feel rich monetarily. I don't think about that.

MORGAN: Do you not?

V. OSTEEN: I am so --

MORGAN: Twenty --

V. OSTEEN: -- frugal in my --

MORGAN: I'm doing the math here.

V. OSTEEN: -- myself, but you know, I --

MORGAN: Twenty million books --

V. OSTEEN: -- I spend my money like I don't have anything.

MORGAN: Well, let's 20 million books, however many million DVD -- what other income do you have other than those?

J. OSTEEN: That's about it.

MORGAN: Right. So, I mean that is a lot of cash. And we're talking like tens of millions of dollars, right?

J. OSTEEN: It's been a lot. I don't know exactly how much, but --

MORGAN: Do you ever feel guilty?

J. OSTEEN: I don't ever feel guilty because it comes from -- it's God's blessings on my life. And to me, to apologize for God's -- how God has blessed you, it's almost an insult to our God.

I spoke to the congregation the other day about wearing your blessings well because there is a religious -- I call it a spirit or something that says we have to be poor and broke and defeated and sad to show people that we're really humble, and that we really love God. And I don't believe that.

I believe God wants us to be examples of what it means to live for Him. And that our money is to be a blessing to others. I mean, what doesn't get talked about is how many people do we bless with our -- with our money to help them, to pay for funerals --

MORGAN: And you don't get paid by the church, do you?

J. OSTEEN: No. I don't take a salary.

MORGAN: So, all the money comes from residual stuff --

J. OSTEEN: Right.

MORGAN: -- on the back of your TV world, but -- which -- which I totally get. So there's an integrity in that position.

And it's an interesting dichotomy, isn't it? This thing with money. Because a lot of -- a lot of Christian preachers, when they hear you talk about money, feel uncomfortable. You know that?

J. OSTEEN: Oh, yes.

MORGAN: You've seen the criticism?

J. OSTEEN: Yes. Sure. Yes. And I think it's just important that that's not the focus of the ministry. And -- and I get -- I get categorized into this guy that's a prosperity preacher. I don't even -- I don't even believe in that. I mean, that's not the focus -- the main things I'm talking about is how you can excel, and how you can forgive, and --

MORGAN: Well, I have to say in -- recession hit America --

J. OSTEEN: Yes.

MORGAN: -- what is wrong with being a prosperity preacher?

J. OSTEEN: Well, that's my whole thing. Is I say to people, would you want me to be a poverty minister? I mean, what -- what kind of message does that send to somebody to say, you know what? God doesn't want you to be blessed. He wants you to go down.

I feel more than ever with the economy like it is to say, you know what? God can make a way even in the desert, even when you don't see a way.

MORGAN: And the American dream at its heart is very much based on -- unlike the British class system, which is, you know, where your parents went to school. In America, it's hard work, achievement, success, and material gain comes from that, isn't it? That's -- that's the American -- anything -- anyone can achieve anything if you work hard enough.

J. OSTEEN: Yes. I believe -- I believe that's true. That -- you know, especially with God's blessings you can go even further. And -- and again I think it's important to go back to this, so we don't leave it on just us. It's about how can we bless others? How can we help those orphans? How can we build children's homes? How can we build hospitals?

MORGAN: How much money do you -- have you raised for other people? Do you know?

J. OSTEEN: Oh, our church has raised millions and tens and -- you know, I don't even --

MORGAN: Do -- do you know how much?

J. OSTEEN: No. I don't know. I don't know the figure.

V. OSTEEN: How much have we given away? Millions and millions of dollars. Yes.

(CROSSTALK)

V. OSTEEN: And personally we've given away millions of dollars as well.

MORGAN: Have you?

J. OSTEEN: Yes.

V. OSTEEN: But you know what too? I -- I want to get off on this is that you can -- you know, you can work hard in America. That's what it's about. But, you know, that's where we also say don't neglect your family. You know, don't -- don't -- don't run it -- we're -- we're not saying run after riches. We're saying, you know, take time for your family. Take time for the things that are important.

Even in this recession, you -- you may be hard up. You may need a job, but don't neglect the things that God has placed around you. Learn to value what's in front of you, and not just chase after things that, you know, really have no -- no meaning in your life.

MORGAN: How do you keep your kids grounded about it if they -- if they're born into wealth? Which obviously I don't think either of you two were born into great wealth, right?

J. OSTEEN: No. You know what? We don't -- I don't -- but she can probably answer this better, but we don't think of ourselves any differently than we did -- well my -- you know, one -- one child is 15 and our daughter is 12. But when I took over 11 years ago we don't -- you know, we don't think much about it.

We just -- we have fun as a family. We go out and play football together. We don't -- you know, it's just -- I think it's how -- it's the atmosphere in the home.

V. OSTEEN: Sure.

J. OSTEEN: It's fun. It's loving. They see us giving. They see -- you know, us working hard. So I think, you know, it's not --

MORGAN: I liked this line you -- you said where -- you -- one of the core values really is that everyone's best days are in front of them.

J. OSTEEN: I don't believe God would have us alive if he didn't have something great in our future. And I understand we're all going to die. And you know I understand that. But you've got to live -- you know, the Bible talks about the saints of old. They died in faith. You may not even see every dream come to pass, but you've got to die hoping that you know what? God's got something great for me to do.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

MORGAN: When we come back, Joel's controversial take on gays and the church.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MORGAN: Is homosexuality a sin, in your eyes?

J. OSTEEN: Yes, I've always believed, Piers, the scripture shows that it's a sin.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

MORGAN: You got two lovely children, and they're reaching teenage years, and all the -- I've got three kids and two of them are teenagers. It brings with it issues and problems. How do your kids in particular stay on the straight and narrow?

I mean, it's hard, isn't it? Because you're so famous. The temptation to stray must be quite -- quite large given all their friends trying to goad them. Say, "Come on, really upset your mother and dad here," you know?

J. OSTEEN: Yes. I don't know. You know, we just try to live an example at home. We give them guidelines about what they can watch, when they can have the computer in the room. And you know, we just do our part. And I think a lot of it is by example.

And you know what? We've been blessed so far. They are 15 and 12 like I said, but I don't know. We're taking it a step at a time; never done it before.

MORGAN: I think we've got some -- some footage of your daughter singing.

J. OSTEEN: Yes. St. Jonathan there.

MORGAN: The song is on guitar?

J. OSTEEN: Yes.

MORGAN: What do you -- what do you feel when you watch that?

J. OSTEEN: You know, I'm so proud.

MORGAN: They're both little performers.

J. OSTEEN: Oh, yes.

MORGAN: Like the old man.

J. OSTEEN: Well, you know, it makes you so proud. We -- we've always done it as a family. And when you see your kids up there -- she's been singing since she was four or five. She'd get in front of a stadium. So it just makes you feel good.

And two, I like the fact that it puts an example of families out there, you know? That you can stay together. That you can be happy. That you can -- you know, I think that's an important role -- role model that we -- that we need to --

MORGAN: Well, this is an interesting thing; the role model thing. Which celebrities do you think are good role models?

J. OSTEEN: You know --

MORGAN: Who are you happy for your children to be exposed to? Who -- who's allowed on their bedroom wall?

J. OSTEEN: Who's on their bedroom wall? My -- Jonathon likes music, and --

V. OSTEEN: My daughter loves Taylor Swift.

MORGAN: Taylor Swift?

V. OSTEEN: Yes, she does.

J. OSTEEN: My son loves Bono.

V. OSTEEN: Yes.

J. OSTEEN: Loves Bono. I think Bono is a -- you know, a great example of using his gifts. He's -- he's built something great now. He's helping others. So I like people like that.

And you know, the other thing, Piers, I think is important. We talked -- I talked to Jonathon, our -- and Alexandra -- our children all the time about, you know, what you put in is going to come out of you one day.

And it's so important. You've got your whole future. I tell them, you've got all of granddaddy -- my dad -- 40 years. You've got all of me. The -- the blessings and -- and Victoria of what we have. There's no reason you can't do great things with your life. But it's all about our choices.

MORGAN: Well, one of the moral mazes for any preacher -- I think a Christian preacher in particular -- is homosexuality. And there's been lots of coverage in the news with the -- the -- the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," campaign obviously. What is your view, because it seems to change depending on the interview that I've read or seen. What is your -- is homosexuality a sin in your eyes?

J. OSTEEN: Yes. I've always believed, Piers, the scriptures shows that it's a sin. But you know, I'm not one of those that are out there to bash homosexuals and tell them that they're terrible people and all of that. I mean, there are other sins in the Bible too.

I think sometimes the church -- and I don't mean this critically, but we focus on one issue or two issues, and there's plenty of other ones. So I don't believe homosexuality is God's best for a person's life. I mean, sin means to miss the mark. But I don't believe being prideful, or being, you know --

MORGAN: It's just you -- you don't normally talk about sin. That's the first time I've actually heard you --

J. OSTEEN: Yes. MORGAN: -- spell it out.

J. OSTEEN: Well, you know, it's -- it's --

MORGAN: It's almost like you've come ready for that question, and thought I'm actually going to say this. I'm --

J. OSTEEN: Well, I --

MORGAN: -- going to say it's a sin.

J. OSTEEN: I think I've -- I've grown in my -- my knowledge. I mean, those first interviews -- I mean, this was all new to me. I mean, I wasn't -- I didn't go to seminary. I wasn't -- I was raised in this, but not on front of the camera.

But I think this point -- people say I don't -- that I don't talk about sin. But I do talk about how we live our life, and making good choices. And at the end of every one of our services I talk about that I believe the greatest sin, and that's to miss the mark of -- of not knowing your creator through Christ.

MORGAN: So when you see civil partnerships being sanctioned, you think that's wrong, presumably?

J. OSTEEN: Well, yes. I think it's -- I think it's wrong. But I'm not going to bash those people. I'm not going to be against those people. They're -- they're good people. I say it's wrong because that's what the scripture says. And you know what? I -- I choose to live my life by what I -- what I read in the scripture.

MORGAN: You see -- I mean, if I have -- say a friend of mine like Elton John --

J. OSTEEN: Yes.

MORGAN: -- watching this at home who with his partner -- a civil partner, David Furnish, have just had a surrogate child, which was born on Christmas day. They're going to be pretty angry what they hear. They're going to think who are you to call them a sinner.

J. OSTEEN: Yes.

MORGAN: But why are they sinners in your eyes?

J. OSTEEN: Well, it's strictly back to what the scripture says. I mean, I can't -- I can't grab one part and say God wants you to be blessed and live an abundant life, and not grab the other part that says, you know what? You know, live -- live that kind of life.

So I just -- you know, it comes back to the scripture. I'm not the judge. You know, God didn't tell me to go around judging everybody.

MORGAN: I'm not so sure though, you see. I think you are a kind of judge. And I -- I think you can't abrogate that responsibility. I think what -- because of your influence -- there's seven million -- eight million viewers every Sunday, when you say things like homosexuality is a sin, it's a big statement to make. You are a judge, and you're encouraging your congregation to believe that.

V. OSTEEN: Well, it's not the - it's not the -- it's the people that we're after. We're not -- we're not looking at their sin. We're not trying to judge they're sin. We're trying to encourage them, and -- and let them know that we --

MORGAN: To do what, though?

V. OSTEEN: -- love them, and that -- you know what? You're only going to -- you're only going to reach people by reaching out to them.

MORGAN: Yes, but I'm curious --

V. OSTEEN: And you know, like if Elton John was sitting here today --

MORGAN: What would you say to him?

V. OSTEEN: -- man, I would say "I love you, Elton John. You're a talented" --

MORGAN: Well, I can tell you, he's not going to say the same.

V. OSTEEN: You have so many gifts. You have -- you know, so --

MORGAN: I mean, he's not going to say to you, "I don't like the way you lead your life."

V. OSTEEN: Well, what I'm saying is --

MORGAN: How -- how would you --

V. OSTEEN: -- we're not judging the person.

MORGAN: Yes.

V. OSTEEN: You know? And that's why you say that, you know, he's not saying it's sin. But, it's like --

MORGAN: But you are judging the person, aren't you? Aren't you?

J. OSTEEN: Well, to me, I just -- I'm not -- I'm not the one to judge and say, you know, who's bad and who's good. Otherwise, you'd have to go through everybody, you know, every -- every one of us. Say well you know what? I've got some pride. Or I've got -- I -- I had a evil thought the other day. Those are sins too.

I don't know that God is judging sins on different levels. But we pick out that one. So I mean, our message -- I mean, you know, if you listen to my messages, they're about lifting people up. And so it's not -- I mean, I really talk about the homosexuality when we get on the interviews.

MORGAN: Yes, but I'm curious. What -- what -- what would you say to a homosexual watching this? What do you -- how do they change -- what do they have to do to change to be better people?

J. OSTEEN: Well, I believe it's -- I don't know that I understand it all. I believe it's a process. But I -- I believe that God can give us grace to change. We've seen people break addictions and do other things as well. So --

MORGAN: Yes, but addictions. I mean, I don't want to bang on about this. But the -- an addiction to alcohol or drugs or something is one thing. You know, being gay, you're gay. There's not much you can do about it. It's not something -- I -- I don't believe it's something you choose to be.

J. OSTEEN: Yes. Yes. I -- I don't know. I don't --

MORGAN: It's -- it's -- it's much harder than just an average addiction.

J. OSTEEN: Yes. I don't -- it -- it is. It is.

V. OSTEEN: It's a tough --

J. OSTEEN: It's a -- it's a difficult issue. I -- I don't -- I don't understand all the answers, and -- but I just come back to the -- what I read in the scripture. I can't ignore that. I don't -- I -- saying it again. I don't know that I understand it all.

But I come back to this -- we're for people. It's not going to do any good to, you know, bash people and say, "You're second class," or "You're this." I'm -- I'm not -- you know, we have gay people that come to our church and sit there. We have people from different faiths.

And so it's an issue that -- you know, it's a hard issue. And I don't know that I fully understand it.

MORGAN: Can it be true Joel Osteen has never been on a date before he met Victoria? That and more of Joel and Victoria's secrets coming up.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(NEWS BREAK)

MORGAN: Joel, is it true that you have never had a single date with a woman, or anybody for that matter, until you met Victoria?

J. OSTEEN: I had not had a formal date. I mean, I may have gone out for coffee with somebody. But not really a formal date. And never really -- never really dated all through my -- you know? I was --

MORGAN: Really?

J. OSTEEN: I was busy playing sports.

MORGAN: How old were you when you met Victoria?

J. OSTEEN: I was about 22. MORGAN: So 22 and never been kissed?

J. OSTEEN: No. I don't think so. By my mom at least.

(CROSSTALK)

V. OSTEEN: See? I broke him in right.

MORGAN: Victoria?

V. OSTEEN: I had opportunity to break him in right.

MORGAN: Had you -- had you had boyfriends before?

V. OSTEEN: Yes. I mean, you know, friends. We went out. Nothing serious. No. Ever.

MORGAN: So both of -- both of you -- this was the first serious relationship?

J. OSTEEN: It was.

V. OSTEEN: Yes.

J. OSTEEN: It was.

MORGAN: Was it -- was it love at first sight?

J. OSTEEN: I tell people for me it was. I don't know about for her.

V. OSTEEN: Well, it was -- it was definitely like at first sight. You know, we -- we dated a year and a half before we did -- we got married. So we took our time. We got to know each other.

J. OSTEEN: We had fun when we dated. I mean, we just -- we laughed the whole time. We -- we went to Rockets basketball games. We just -- boy that's when we got to know each other.

V. OSTEEN: Work out together. We --

J. OSTEEN: You now, just --

V. OSTEEN: Did everything --

J. OSTEEN: Yes. We just --

MORGAN: Well, when you're -- when you're -- when you're a Christian preacher, what are the rules of engagement when you're dating? I mean, they have to be pretty strict, right?

V. OSTEEN: Well, he wasn't a preacher. He wasn't a preacher.

MORGAN: Well, he was a son of preacher.

J. OSTEEN: Yes.

MORGAN: I mean that's -- that's nearly as dangerous.

J. OSTEEN: Well, but --

MORGAN: So I mean, it can be very --

V. OSTEEN: Well, I've heard a song about that before.

(CROSSTALK)

MORGAN: Yes, that's right. That's "Son of a Preacher Man," isn't it?

J. OSTEEN: Well, we -- we --

MORGAN: Were you very chivalrous?

J. OSTEEN: I don't know what that means.

V. OSTEEN: Chivalrous. Yes, when you -- he was always a gentleman. He was always -- in fact, you know, everything about him was so perfect that that's why I had to -- I mean, he was kind. He would -- I watched how he treated his family. I watched how he treated the people around him, how he spoke them.

And he was -- he was just what you see is what he's always been. It's amazing.

(CROSSTALK)

MORGAN: How about -- yes, I don't want to prick any balloons here. But are there any annoying aspects to Joel that we should be aware of?

J. OSTEEN: I know there's --

MORGAN: Behind closed doors --

V. OSTEEN: Well --

MORGAN: -- what -- what annoys you about him?

V. OSTEEN: I'm probably way more spontaneous than he is.

J. OSTEEN: Yes.

V. OSTEEN: I just want to do different things, try different food, do -- and he's pretty routine. He likes to do the same thing all the time. He's comfortable in his routine. And so those are things that we kind of, you know --

MORGAN: The most shocking thing.

V. OSTEEN: -- he helps me, and I help him.

MORGAN: The most shocking thing you've ever said as far as I'm concerned from the pulpit was when you suddenly declared to your congregation, "You've all got to go out and buy Victoria's Secret underwear for your girlfriends or wives." V. OSTEEN: Something like that.

MORGAN: I mean, I was -- I nearly fell off my chair. Joel? Have you been drinking today?

J. OSTEEN: That was -- that was when I was a lot younger. I've matured since then. No, I think the context of the message -- I think that was back in -- six or seven years ago. I think I was talking about how, you know, relationships with husbands and wives, and how, you know, wives don't look good for everybody else. Look good for your husband too.

And so I think that was the context of --

V. OSTEEN: Don't wear that same old bathrobe that you've been --

J. OSTEEN: Yes.

V. OSTEEN: -- wearing for the last ten years. That's what he meant.

MORGAN: Well, and I had to -- had to ask you, Victoria. And you are -- you are called Victoria. So we need to get to your secrets quite quickly here. But when you heard him say that, what was your reaction?

V. OSTEEN: I cracked up.

MORGAN: Did you?

V. OSTEEN: I thought it was funny. I think he should say more stuff like that. I think it's great. It did -- it did get a real response. And I think the people could relate to it. I think women could relate to it. And we all needed to be reminded, you know, that hey, you know what? We do need to -- to take that extra time, and that extra, you know --

MORGAN: Do -- do you go to Victoria's Secret, or --

V. OSTEEN: Yes. I -- I mean, yes. I go to Victoria's Secret.

J. OSTEEN: All the men were thanking me after that service.

MORGAN: I bet they were. I bet they were. Yes. I mean, I -- even I felt like going down there. But listen -- listen to Joel.

MORGAN: What's been the single greatest moment of your life outside of marriage and children?

J. OSTEEN: Outside of marriage and children, outside of knowing the Lord -- coming to -- coming to know the Lord.

MORGAN: The -- the moment you'd like to relive again if you had the chance?

J. OSTEEN: You know, I think it was an amazing moment when we opened up our new facility, the Compaq Center, where we took the church where my parents had had it for 40 years, and we moved into that premier facility there. It's like, you know, more than I could even ask or think. I think, God, how am I standing here?

I had season tickets to watch the Rockets. And I -- I grew up watching them play. And so now when I get up to speak each week, I see my old season tickets. That's where I took Victoria on the first date. And it's just very overwhelming.

That night, and almost any time I walk into that building, I think, man, God's dream for our life is bigger than our own.

MORGAN: What would your dad have made of that you think at the moment?

J. OSTEEN: He would be proud. He would be. I'm sure he's looking down from Heaven now just smiling. He never -- you know, he saw me preach that one sermon. But I don't know that, you know, where God's taken us. I mean -- I mean, my dad's favorite show to watch was Larry King.

MORGAN: Well, hang on. Come here. Joel, I sincerely hope this is going to be your favorite show.

V. OSTEEN: No. No. No.

J. OSTEEN: My dad never --

MORGAN: It was my favorite show too, so.

J. OSTEEN: My dad -- one time Larry King was in town doing a heart function. And we -- I took my dad up there to meet him. And -- and my dad was being -- well, I never dreamed, you know, I was on Larry King for -- for years and years. And I think, man God has so blessed me. I don't -- I don't know what my father would be thinking.

V. OSTEEN: Yes.

MORGAN: Will you feel the same way about meeting me, do you think, Joel?

J. OSTEEN: I do even better. Even better.

MORGAN: Millions of Americans follow Joel Osteen as a spiritual guide. So I want to get his take on some of the issues dividing this country today.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MORGAN: So we thought what we'd do, Joel and Victoria, is -- is quickly kind of moral maze, given that you're the top preacher in the country. And I want your instant reactions and answers to the following questions. You can both parlay.

Madonna or Lady Gaga?

J. OSTEEN: Lady Gaga. MORGAN: Really? Good man.

V. OSTEEN: He's amazing.

(CROSSTALK)

MORGAN: No hesitation there.

V. OSTEEN: I like Madonna cause she's held in there. She's strong.

J. OSTEEN: I have a connection with Lady Gaga, so there's some --

(CROSSTALK)

MORGAN: Really.

J. OSTEEN: Yes. But I can't talk about it here.

MORGAN: Joel, we've got all night.

J. OSTEEN: Oh, no. No. No.

(CROSSTALK)

MORGAN: How on Earth have you connected to Lady Gaga?

V. OSTEEN: Oh, not --

J. OSTEEN: It's a longer story.

MORGAN: You can't open the door and then just leave me -- leave me waiting outside.

J. OSTEEN: I -- I met her manager in the hotel one day. And we've become friends -- somewhat friends, talk. And he's a good man. And so there's a little connection there.

MORGAN: Simon Cowell -- angel or the devil?

J. OSTEEN: Oh, I think he's an angel.

V. OSTEEN: He's an angel.

J. OSTEEN: I think he's --

MORGAN: What?

J. OSTEEN: I think -- I think he's -- I think he's smart.

MORGAN: You both think he's an angel?

J. OSTEEN: Oh, yes. Behind that toughness there's that soft side.

V. OSTEEN: He's a smart guy.

MORGAN: No. No. I know him very well, and there really isn't. No, he really is. He's as bad as he seems.

MORGAN: Justin Bieber, cute or annoying?

J. OSTEEN: Oh, I --

V. OSTEEN: Cute.

J. OSTEEN: Yes. I mean, as a guy, I'm not going to call him cute, but I think he's talented. I like him. I've seen the reviews.

MORGAN: No. He's either cute or annoying. I'm sorry.

J. OSTEEN: OK. Cute then.

MORGAN: Is the death penalty ever justified, and if so, when?

J. OSTEEN: Yeah. I don't know. I struggle with that, you know?

MORGAN: If Osama Bin Laden was captured tomorrow --

J. OSTEEN: Well --

MORGAN: -- should he be executed?

J. OSTEEN: I think that it would probably be a good idea, you know, because of the people they hurt.

MORGAN: So execute him?

J. OSTEEN: Yes.

MORGAN: Did Michael Vick deserve his second chance?

J. OSTEEN: Absolutely.

MORGAN: Do you think everybody does?

J. OSTEEN: I think everybody does. My goodness. It's -- I mean, if we didn't -- if we didn't we'd -- none of us would make it. So I'm -- I'm happy for him. And you know, he served his time. I -- I think he's remorseful. Man alive. Let's give him a chance. Let's let him -- you know what? My son was --

MORGAN: How many -- how many chances do you give people. In America, it's -- it's three strikes and you're out famously.

V. OSTEEN: Yes.

J. OSTEEN: Yes.

MORGAN: Is that enough? I mean, do people -- eventually you got to say, you know what? You've had your chances.

J. OSTEEN: Well, I don't think you ever give up on them. I think at some point, you're going to spend time in prison, and are you going to reap the rewards of it. But I don't think you ever give up on them, even to the last dying breath. I think you say, you know what? There's hope. You can have forgiveness and redemption.

MORGAN: What would you like your epitaph to be.

J. OSTEEN: I like it -- would -- you know, basically to say that, you know, here was a guy that lifted people up. That Joel was a healer. Joel that was a believer in -- in mankind. Something that -- well, basically that -- that lived a -- a life of -- loved and helped others.

MORGAN: You've got the big event coming up in August -- it's another stadium gig. Tell me about that.

J. OSTEEN: Oh, we're excited. You know we're going to the Cellular Field there in Chicago and 50,000 people will be out there. And we just have a good time celebrating God's goodness. And we take one of those events -- one of those big events, and we do that one per year. We've done Yankee Stadium, and Dodger -- now we're going there. So we're excited about it.

MORGAN: I mean, you're playing as many stadiums as Lady Gaga at the moment.

J. OSTEEN: I don't know about that.

MORGAN: I think you should go out together.

J. OSTEEN: No. I don't know.

MORGAN: I mean -- I mean professionally.

(CROSSTALK)

MORGAN: Exactly. It's been a pleasure to meet you both.

J. OSTEEN: Thanks, Piers. Really --

MORGAN: It really is. Thank you very much.

J. OSTEEN: Our honor. Appreciate it.

V. OSTEEN: Thank you.

MORGAN: Real pleasure.

Tomorrow night, the sisters Kardashian, Kim and Kourtney on life, love and that Kardashian brand.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

KIM KARDASHIAN, "THE KARDASHIANS": We are smart enough to understand that having a TV show, a successful reality show, is just a platform to where people can kind of, you know, get to know us on a personal level, see us. But for us, we've always been about the business.

(END VIDEO CLIP) MORGAN: And that's the Kardashian sisters, Kim and Kourtney, coming up tomorrow night in a fascinating exchange. But for now, Anderson Cooper, "AC 360."