After Justin Bieber announced his engagement to Hailey Baldwin this week, one of the first people who was expected to rush to congratulate the couple was Carl Lentz, the pastor of the Hillsong megachurch in Los Angeles.
For one thing, Lentz’s church had become an important part of Bieber and Baldwin’s social life and was a popular spot for date nights during their whirlwind romance. Lentz also had been identified as 24-year-old Bieber’s spiritual advisor in God, faith and Christianity for the past several years. The two men were said to be inseparable, and there were rumors that Lentz would officiate the wedding.
But TMZ reports that Bieber and Lentz had “a major falling out” some time ago.
If that’s true, that could explain why Lentz sounded less than excited about the engagement when he was stopped on the street by a TMZ reporter in Australia.
When asked if he would officiate the wedding, Lentz replied tersely: “No idea.”
When asked if had any thoughts about the engagement, Lentz said, “No.”
Then when was asked if he was happy about the engagement, Lentz said, almost grudgingly and with irritation: “Uh, yeah, sure.”
It sounds like Lentz’ most famous disciple left him out of the loop with regard to his 21-year-old girlfriend, or he didn’t check in with him before proposing, or he did but went against whatever Lentz advised.
Whatever is going on with Lentz, both Bieber and Baldwin laced their respective engagement announcements with proclamations about how their love and future marriage must be the work of divine intervention.
In an Instagram post confirming that he proposed to Baldwin last weekend in the Bahamas, Bieber gushed at length about how she’s the love of his life. He also explained how committed he is to leading “our family with honor and integrity, letting Jesus through his Holy Spirit guide us in everything we do and every decision we make.”
Bieber also wrote as if God had guided him on when to propose, which he did in front of other diners at a restaurant at the couple’s Bahamas resort.
“Gods timing really is literally perfect,” Bieber said in his post. “We got engaged on the seventh day of the seventh month, the number seven is the number of spiritual perfection, it’s true GOOGLE IT!”
Bieber also cited a biblical passage, Proverbs 18:22, which is interpreted as explaining how God created marriage and believes that marriage is important for the individual and for society. Bieber wrote: “He who finds a wife finds a good thing and obtains FAVOR from the Lord!”
Bieber then ended his post: “This is the year of favor!!!!”
For her part, Baldwin, whose actor father Stephen Baldwin also is a Christian minister, tweeted: “Not sure what I did in life to deserve such happiness but I am so utterly grateful to God for giving me such an incredible person to share my life with! No words could ever express my gratitude.”
Bieber’s affiliation with the Hillsong Church goes back several years, People reported. Lentz, Hillsong’s “rock star pastor,” brought the church from Australia to New York City in 2010. Over the past few years, Hillsong has become known as the megachurch of choice for hot young celebrities. Lentz performed Bieber’s baptism in 2014, and an exhausted, stressed out Bieber turned to Lentz after canceling his tour in 2017.
But for unknown reasons, the two are no longer close. Sources connected to Bieber told TMZ that Bieber became angry at Lentz a while ago and broke ties with him. As far as Bieber is concerned, Lentz “is history