Joel Osteen of the Houston megachurch Lakewood has said he didn't choose to be straight.

The 49-year-old Osteen, who is currently pitching his new book I Declare, added in a CNN panel discussion with Soledad O'Brien and Richard Sorarides that he believes being gay is a sin.

“When I read the scripture, that's what I believe,” he told O'Brien. “That the scripture condemns it or says it's a sin. But it also says that you know, lying is, and that being prideful is ...”

“Right,” O'Brien started, “so then you shouldn't lie. But for people who are gay, you're saying so then you shouldn't be gay?''

“Well, I think that's the big debate. The scripture says you've got to work out your own salvation ...”

“Do you think you can choose to be gay or not gay?” Socarides interrupted. “You think you chose to be straight?”

“I know I have not chosen to be straight, I feel like that's who I am,” Osteen answered.

“Well, so how can I choose to be gay?” O'Brien added. (The video is embedded on this page. Visit our video library for more videos.)

“Osteen's admission that his own sexual orientation is not a choice while still deriding homosexuality as a sin that his 43,000 weekly congregants can choose to rectify is hardly surprising,” Adam Peck wrote at Think Progress. “He has repeated the claim – that gays can change their orientation – before several times.”