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May 17th, 2013
12:12 PM ET

Pat Robertson shrugs off adultery, CBN regrets the misunderstanding

By Eric Marrapodi, Co-Editor CNN Belief Blog

(CNN) - The Christian Broadcasting Network regrets the misunderstanding. Again.

Pat Robertson, the network's 83-year-old founder, was not condoning adultery when he answered a viewer's quesion on "The 700 Club" this week, the network said.

The viewer said she was having difficulty forgiving her husband for cheating. Robertson said the “secret” was to “stop talking about the cheating. He cheated on you. Well, he’s a man. OK.”

Robertson went on to suggest the woman focus on why she had married her husband and whether he provided for her needs and those of their children, adding, “Is he handsome? Start focusing on these things and essentially fall in love all over again.”

“Males have a tendency to wander a little bit. And what you want to do is make a home so wonderful he doesn’t want to wander.”

CBN spokesman Chris Roslan wrote in a statement that Robertson’s “intent was not to condone infidelity or to cast blame. We regret any misunderstanding."

Robertson off-the-cuff comments over the years have perplexed and angered other Christian leaders. One Christian pastor said his New Year’s resolution was to not comment on Robertson’s gaffes for an entire year.

Here are some of Robertson's most memorable statements:

1. The U.S. should kill Chavez

In 2005 Robertson suggested the United States should assassinate Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez.

"We have the ability to take him out, and I think the time has come that we exercise that ability. We don’t need another $200 billion war to get rid of one strong-arm dictator. It’s a whole lot easier to have some of the covert operatives do the job and then get it over with,” he said in a segment about the now-deceased head of state.

After considerable outcry, the minister backtracked and released a statement saying, “Is it right to call for assassination? No, and I apologize for that statement. I spoke in frustration that we should accommodate the man who thinks the U.S. is out to kill him."

A U.S. State Department official called the remarks "inappropriate."

2. How bad is weed, really?

Robertson, who once ran for president as a Republican, broke ranks with religious conservatives by endorsing the legalization of marijuana. "I believe in working with the hearts of people, and not locking them up," he said in a 2010 broadcast of "The 700 Club."

Cue spokesman Chris Roslan, who wrote, “Pat has never condoned the use of, nor does he use, marijuana.”

3. You know who’s to blame for that earthquake in Haiti? Haitians.

Shortly after a 2010 earthquake in Haiti left more than 220,000 people dead and Port-au-Prince decimated, Robertson referenced a slave revolt in 1804, where, legend has it, the Haitian slaves made a deal with the devil to shake off French colonialism.

"And they got together and swore a pact to the devil. They said, 'We will serve you if you will get us free from the French.' True story. And so the devil said, 'OK, it's a deal,'" Robertson said one day after the quake.

"You know, the Haitians revolted and got themselves free. But ever since, they have been cursed by one thing after the other."

That day CBN quickly clarified: “Dr. Robertson never stated that the earthquake was God’s wrath. If you watch the entire video segment, Dr. Robertson’s compassion for the people of Haiti is clear.” In fact, while Robertson was talking about Haiti on TV, his charitable arm Operation Blessing was already on the ground providing medical treatment, food, and supplies to victims.

4. Gay days = hurricanes and possibly meteors

In June 1998, after Walt Disney World announced it would have special days for gay and lesbian families in Orlando, and city officials announced they would fly rainbow flags in support of the event, Robertson warned the city, "You're right in the way of some serious hurricanes, and I don't think I'd be waving those flags in God's face if I were you."

Robertson told the Orlando Sentinel at the time that his comments were taken out of context and released a full transcript of what he said on the show:

“So if the United States wants to embrace 'degrading passions' - according to the Bible, something that the Bible says is an abomination against God - we're not in any way, shape or form hating anybody. This is not a message of hate; this is a message of redemption. But if a condition like this will bring about the destruction of your nation; if it will bring about terrorist bombs; if it'll bring about earthquakes, tornadoes and possibly a meteor, it isn't necessarily something we ought to open our arms to. And I would warn Orlando that you're right in the way of some serious hurricanes and I don't think I'd be waving those flags in God's face if I were you."

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Belief • Christianity

soundoff (2,964 Responses)
  1. australian_stockman

    You know, guys – I'm a born-again believer in Jesus Christ, I read the bible, go to church, and all that other stuff.... and... I gotta say: Pat Robertson is a loose cannon on deck... Somebody out there really ought to encourage the guy to just stay off the air, stay out of the news, and maybe just stay in his house... It's not that I expect "perfection", or that I can't make allowances for occassional "quirky" statements. But this is beyond "quirky". This is totally over the top.... and, as far as I'm concerned, totally wrong....

    May 17, 2013 at 7:22 pm |
    • What do Christians think about alzheimer's?

      So when Pat can't remember who this Jesus person is that everyone keeps talking about, is he still going to heaven?

      May 17, 2013 at 7:28 pm |
    • One one

      The problem is, once one believes in magic, then anything goes. Then who is to say who's claim is right or wrong ? That is why the scientific method must be the final arbitrator what is real vs. what is just made up BS.

      May 17, 2013 at 7:31 pm |
  2. George Marshall

    Robertson is senile. Hopefully he won't be around much longer.

    May 17, 2013 at 7:22 pm |
    • Badump Bump

      He's never been a round cause he's always been a square...

      May 17, 2013 at 7:30 pm |
  3. MohammadScrewedSheepAndAteTheFelch

    ISLAM FOUNDATION OF AMERICAN CONSTI TUTION,

    The fact that you would call an Atheist an "Hindi" demonstrates a very specific and clean amount of stupidity.
    Take your imaginary violent god and absurd religion and cram it.

    May 17, 2013 at 7:22 pm |
    • ISLAM FOUNDATION OF BULLSH.IT

      MOHAMMAD DOES CRAM IT ALREADY, IN DOGS AND HIS SISTER

      May 17, 2013 at 7:29 pm |
  4. Robert

    Let me get this straight the Babble says Gawd is gonna send a Meteor to destroy the Earth because Walt Disney World hangs up Rainbow Flags................Gawd hit Haiti with an Earthquake....................................Gawd sure doesn't seem like such a loving Gawd. But oh yeah..........Muslims are the Crazy ones! Ok Thanks Pat! Always a great example of how proud I am to be a Atheist, and I can truly laugh at this buffoon.

    May 17, 2013 at 7:21 pm |
    • Robert

      Oh Yeah I forgot.............................................This Bozo pays no taxes because he believes in Gawd! Something needs to change when this clown speaks for a large mass of sheeple.

      May 17, 2013 at 7:23 pm |
    • lol??

      Billy Clinton has a tidy little stash with his foundation for a possible unfortuitous event, like ticking Hilly off once too many times. Don't see many ex-presidents living at the Y.

      May 17, 2013 at 7:39 pm |
  5. BarbiDoll

    He is in serious need of a neurological workup. When they are having to cover for him after his off-the-wall comments
    on a consistent basis, something needs to be done.

    May 17, 2013 at 7:20 pm |
  6. Bob

    Sounds like a man talking from experience.

    May 17, 2013 at 7:20 pm |
  7. LalaFunnies

    Who cares what he says? He's so full of it. He's sadder than sad, a man who is no longer relevant in today's world.

    May 17, 2013 at 7:16 pm |
  8. Karen snyder

    Well good job Pat just another sheep in wolf clothing that the Bible Warns us about. Suger coating watering down the TRUTH of God. You add to or take away of my Truth and I will blot you out of the Book ofLife. End of story

    May 17, 2013 at 7:14 pm |
    • WarreN MooN

      Careful with those CAps, KarEn. And capitalizing TRUTH doesn't make Christianity's idiotic claims true, no matter how fat your fingers are.

      May 17, 2013 at 7:22 pm |
    • sam

      Every chrisitian thinks they're a better christian than anyone, huh?

      May 17, 2013 at 7:24 pm |
    • Robert

      Stupid stupid Babble quoting doesn't make it real folks. Your religion is dying because people are getting tired of the charades and the hypocrisy. And Clowns like this guy!

      May 17, 2013 at 7:28 pm |
  9. klaps

    I hope his wife cheats on him. More than likely he has a gay child grandchild in the closet. Sad.

    May 17, 2013 at 7:13 pm |
  10. NKBL

    His wife must be so proud.

    May 17, 2013 at 7:08 pm |
    • ISLAM FOUNDATION OF AMERICAN CONSTI TUTION

      happy, she got even with him.

      May 17, 2013 at 7:11 pm |
  11. Judith

    Another example of the hypocrisy of the right-wing. Applying the old double standard and excusing bad behavior on the part of males. If a guy is so clueless that he can't try to stay faithful, then he's not very trustworthy in any other ways. Maybe Robertson is getting a bit senile and no one takes him seriously except the pathetic people who put faith in televangelists whose average I.Q. would not make it to room temperature.

    May 17, 2013 at 7:06 pm |
    • ISLAM FOUNDATION OF AMERICAN CONSTI TUTION

      It has nothing to do with faith, but hindu secular ism, criminal self center ism of one, hindu atheist, crook self centered are using to beat on whole faith.

      May 17, 2013 at 7:10 pm |
    • ISLAM FOUNDATION OF BULLSH.IT

      SHUT THE HELL UP MOHAMMAD, GO PUT SOME DEODORANT ON YOU STINKY GOAT, WE CAN SMELL YOU ALL THE WAY FROM PAKISTAN

      May 17, 2013 at 7:12 pm |
    • Bob

      This is not right-wing anymore then Bill Clinton cheating on his wife in the White House is Liberal. Give me a break.

      May 17, 2013 at 7:17 pm |
    • Observer

      Bob,

      The biggest difference between left-wing cheaters like Clinton and right-wing cheaters like Mark Sanford, Newt Gingrich, etc. is that the right-wingers are apt to be world-class HYPOCRITES too.

      May 17, 2013 at 7:20 pm |
    • Mike

      Um, I'm a right winger, and I despise cheaters, and hate what this jerk on CBN said as well as the cheating husband. The cheating husband should stand trial for execution.

      May 17, 2013 at 7:21 pm |
    • ISLAM FOUNDATION OF AMERICAN CONSTI TUTION

      Go to hind with your hindu atheism, filthy self center ism, stop hinding, barking, your hindu secular ism, filthy self center ism, dog, secular by faith.

      May 17, 2013 at 7:21 pm |
    • Observer

      "The cheating husband should stand trial for execution"

      The radical Muslim position is stated.

      May 17, 2013 at 7:23 pm |
    • ISLAM FOUNDATION OF BULLSH.IT

      MOHAMMAD ARE YOU FANTASIZING ABOUT DOGS *AGAIN*? YOU NEED HELP, YOU SISTER-TOUCHING ASSWIPER. MAYBE STICK TO DOGS INSTEAD OF DOING YOUR SISTER YET AGAIN. SHE CAN'T STAND THE SMELL OF YOU EITHER.

      May 17, 2013 at 7:27 pm |
  12. EdL

    So now CNN is interested in what Pat Robertson says? Perhaps CNN would like to cover other things Robertson says and believes? Can hardly wait.

    May 17, 2013 at 7:04 pm |
    • DC1973

      You do realize that you're on the Belief blog, yes?

      As in ... this is the religion news section?

      May 17, 2013 at 7:26 pm |
  13. cvryder2000

    What is it that Uncle Putz doesn't get about that commandment (one of the Big Ten, no less!) about not committing adultery? It does apply equally, old boy, and not just to women.

    May 17, 2013 at 7:02 pm |
  14. Matt

    Pat Robertson has been creating atheists since 1975

    May 17, 2013 at 6:59 pm |
    • Should read...

      Pat Robertson has been confirming atheists view of Christianity since 1975

      May 17, 2013 at 7:26 pm |
  15. God

    Those 10 commandment things? I was only joking.

    May 17, 2013 at 6:58 pm |
    • DJ Reality

      Yeah , that thou shall not kill thing. The NRA has been working against for years.

      May 17, 2013 at 7:05 pm |
  16. Fr33th1nk3r

    Once you start to believe that you are in special telepathic communication with an invisible man in the sky, all manner of absurdities are now possible.

    May 17, 2013 at 6:57 pm |
    • Kierkegaard

      No one here has expressed a belief in telepathic communication. No one has expressed a belief in a invisible man in the sky.

      May 17, 2013 at 7:02 pm |

    • I did, once.

      May 17, 2013 at 7:03 pm |
    • .

      No you didn't, ever.

      May 17, 2013 at 7:06 pm |
  17. Katie

    Those Christians, they do love their sinners, especially the males...

    May 17, 2013 at 6:53 pm |
    • DJ Reality

      Oh I would love to meet you.

      May 17, 2013 at 7:06 pm |
    • Macaroni salad

      test post

      May 17, 2013 at 7:11 pm |
  18. keb carerra

    At least he got the weed part correct. This is someone that has god talking to him , he hears voices. He believes in demons and spirits , a human virgin gave birth to his god , and that god is three separate beings and one god , a mystery indeed , garbage

    May 17, 2013 at 6:51 pm |
  19. Grafted Olive Branch

    Nature is predisposed to male and female. Other perversions of nature are just naturally wrong. Adultery is wrong also. Yet mans attraction to the feminine body is a powerful force of nature. A man who is comfortable in a well feathered nest with the same hot chick that turned him on to begin with, will be less likely to leave that nest for the neighbor who wags her tail feathers at him.

    May 17, 2013 at 6:47 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      Faraday. Maxwell and others describe the powerful force associated with charges, but they fail where the Bible does not: like sometimes attracts like. "And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet."

      May 17, 2013 at 6:54 pm |
    • Pro-Fun-Dity

      GOB, the world of Victorian England awaits you!

      May 17, 2013 at 6:56 pm |
    • Arthur Bryant

      "Nature is predisposed to male and female. Other perversions of nature are just naturally wrong".
      I used to find it perplexing, then horrifying, and now merely amusing that you xtians spout this absolute crap as if it were absolute truth. But being uninterested in facts and/or reality that might contradict your idiocy you would, wouldn't you? I'm reminded of nothing so much as a 4 year old child saying in a sing-song voice, "I know the truth and you don't, nah-nah-na-hah-nah!" No insult to 4 year old children intended.

      May 18, 2013 at 2:05 pm |
  20. Dynamic Ifiction

    Praise the Lord! I wish my wife would have heeded this advice when I fooled around on her the sixth time. Boy, five times is forgivable, but six isn't? Well, at least I know Jesus doesn't have a problem forgiving me. Thank you, Pat!

    May 17, 2013 at 6:46 pm |
    • Grafted Olive Branch

      If you are serious, Jesus will forgive you. But you will have to live with the consequences of your choices in this life.

      May 17, 2013 at 6:54 pm |
    • sam

      Don't worry, it's completely ok if she's fat.

      May 17, 2013 at 7:15 pm |
    • Truth Prevails :-)

      now according to Grafty the Drafty Brain man, there are ways in which adultery are okay. The dolt speaks on behalf of his immoral brother who screwed around on his wife and says it is her fault because she gained weight. Gotta love these christian's who think that because the have an imaginary friend and a 2000 year old book, they get a free pass for being idiots (not sinners but plain moronic idiots).

      May 17, 2013 at 7:33 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.