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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. Jea0712

    I like this guy!!!

    May 17, 2013 at 10:12 pm |
  2. CarrotCakeMan

    Cue the "Twilight Zone" theme music. He's the p-nuttiest. If only he respected Americans' right to be free from his religion.

    May 17, 2013 at 9:59 pm |
  3. Astral MacFloaty

    Probably a bad time to bring this up but a hostile crowd is an attentive crowd..

    One more time for Atheists and Christians and everyone in between...sound sleep, wake up, saw my self sleeping...saw ME my own asleep body, bright light...what kind of looked like Legolas (prior to LOTR being in theaters).

    I was ten.

    If there are NO dieties/spirits/and so on...what happened to me? Alien abduction? Bad dream? There was nothing like that ever and it isn't in the bible (I dont think so anyway) and everybody is overlooking it due to politics.

    This is the type of stuff people keep quiet about (atleast until they find an anonymous blog). Go ahead and mock and debunk me but atleast it's out now infront of the world. And when you are done go look at OBREF. It's not just me.

    May 17, 2013 at 9:57 pm |
    • The real Tom

      And what, exactly, do you imagine your vision signified?

      May 17, 2013 at 9:59 pm |
    • Astral MacFloaty

      http://oberf.org/

      There is the link oberf. I don't know...it was just something..something freakin wierd enough to not forget about.

      May 17, 2013 at 10:02 pm |
    • The real Tom

      It's "weird" all right. Just like you.

      May 17, 2013 at 10:04 pm |
    • The real Tom

      "everybody is overlooking it due to politics."

      No, darling. Everybody is overlooking it because they are sane.

      May 17, 2013 at 10:06 pm |
    • Astral MacFloaty

      Shouting an insult I suppose is easier than trying to figure out what is happening to people. Still wouldn't it be worth taking a look at. All those people on neardeath.com. and it's all hypoxia related suposedly? You make me wonder if "insanity" is just a label people use when they want to look the other way.

      May 17, 2013 at 10:54 pm |
    • The real Tom

      Oh, come on. Do you REALLY think NDE are evidence that there's a heaven? Why is it then that not a single person has ever described hell in a NDE? Do only the saved have NDEs?

      May 17, 2013 at 10:57 pm |
    • FauxPaws

      What you're describing is known is Pychiatric circles as an intense episode of depersonalization and it is completely normal, it usually happens just before waking when REM sleep is at it's zenith. If it gave you a sense of spiritual peace that's great! Most people are terrified and some even resort to dulling their REM with alcohol and drugs to avoid these intense experiences.

      May 17, 2013 at 10:59 pm |
    • Astral MacFloaty

      A whole day later (sorry...life happened..back to the discussion maybe too late)

      Tom...Heaven..maybe not, the problem of consciousness maybe. NDE's happen to people from all faiths and backgrounds, and the experiences range they can include hell-like images.

      Faux Paws....Yours is probably the best explaination I've ever seen. I didn't think about hypnopompic/hypnogogogic hallucinations but I read up on what you said and cortisol seems to play a factor in it. An OBE wouldn't be related to hypoxia necessarily and REM sleep cycles do fit the bill. Thanks much. You actually helped alot and gave me a new place to keep researching.

      May 18, 2013 at 4:22 pm |
  4. Dex

    Gee whiz, every single time this guy opens his mouth, I chuckle and think to myself, "I haven't been to an organized church of any kind in several years but this man's made his religion his life, and yet he continually sounds like he's a brand new convert with no clue regarding the moral conduct which is clearly outlined within its teachings." A good, long look in the spiritual mirror daily is probably the best church of all, Amen?

    May 17, 2013 at 9:52 pm |
    • twalk

      He has gotten rich off of religion.

      May 17, 2013 at 10:37 pm |
  5. Lovecrafty

    Robertson's viewpoint, mainly that women seduce women to "wander", is held by Muslim's as well...He's not too far from Burkahs!!!

    May 17, 2013 at 9:51 pm |
  6. .

    i can cite sources

    May 17, 2013 at 9:50 pm |
    • The real Tom

      You couldn't cite a source if you were facing a firing squad, you chucklehead.

      May 17, 2013 at 9:59 pm |
    • Observer

      Yep. Tell us why God went to all the trouble of relocating or killing millions of animals in order to eliminate evil people who were dying out without any new ones being born.

      WOW!

      May 17, 2013 at 10:01 pm |
    • Observer

      The real Tom,

      This is almost as funny as when I was told the Great Flood didn't kill many people because I couldn't give the name of even one victim.

      May 17, 2013 at 10:12 pm |
    • The real Tom

      Observer, that is hilarious, yet sad. It's hard to imagine people this stupid are allowed to roam the earth freely.

      May 17, 2013 at 10:17 pm |
  7. The real Tom

    Hey dottie, is there any proof that no children existed when the great flood supposedly occurred? Can you cite any sources that back up that claim?

    Of course not, You're a dolt.

    May 17, 2013 at 9:47 pm |
    • .

      yes

      May 17, 2013 at 9:49 pm |
    • The real Tom

      No. Otherwise, you'd post a cite, fvcktard.

      May 17, 2013 at 9:51 pm |
    • .

      so you can understand yes i can quote sources

      May 17, 2013 at 9:51 pm |
    • The real Tom

      No you can't. You don't have any. If you did, you'd have posted them, lamebrain.

      May 17, 2013 at 9:53 pm |
    • .

      why should i cater to an ass hole

      May 17, 2013 at 10:07 pm |
    • The real Tom

      Because I did.

      Put up or shut up.

      May 17, 2013 at 10:07 pm |
    • .

      you have not shown the intelligence to be able to comprehend what you read it is clearly explained in Genesis, you all brought it up take a look and you will see there is no mention of children or fetus in the passage in fact all evidence points to no children being conceived at all only mutations that like mules could not reproduce and that some hundreds of years before the flood

      May 17, 2013 at 10:12 pm |
    • The real Tom

      So you are contending that the fact that no mention is made of children or pregnant women is proof there weren't any?

      AHAHAHAHHAHAHHAHHAHAH!

      What a bonehead!

      May 17, 2013 at 10:15 pm |
    • .

      You said they were mentioned who is the ass hole now

      May 17, 2013 at 10:16 pm |
    • .

      there is a greater reference to no children than the fact none were mentioned.

      May 17, 2013 at 10:18 pm |
    • The real Tom

      Nope. Never said anything of the sort. I think you are confused. Scratch that; I KNOW you are confused. Except that, in your case, "confused" means "brain dead."

      May 17, 2013 at 10:18 pm |
    • The real Tom

      "there is a greater reference to no children than the fact none were mentioned."

      No, there isn't. If there were, you'd have cited chapter and verse of said reference, buffoon.

      May 17, 2013 at 10:19 pm |
    • .

      It is all in the Genesis account you began by saying you knew.

      May 17, 2013 at 10:21 pm |
    • The real Tom

      No, I didn't. Keep lying, dearie. It just proves my point all the more. You're an idiot and a liar.

      May 17, 2013 at 10:22 pm |
    • redzoa

      One need only look to 1 Sam 15:3 to see the god of the bible had no qualms slaughtering children and infants.

      May 17, 2013 at 10:25 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      Someone, Chad I think, was entertaining while explaining how gender was determined in the beginning. It got into how God's gender is determined. Dot may have an opinion about that. Amazing the things you can learn by reading Genesis again and again.

      May 17, 2013 at 10:30 pm |
    • The real Tom

      Yes, TTTOO. Apparently doing so renders one incapable of any sentient thought. Dottie the Dim is an exemplar.

      May 17, 2013 at 10:33 pm |
  8. David Soares

    What a goofy SOB

    May 17, 2013 at 9:46 pm |
  9. GinCas

    Pat Robertson was, is, and always will be a disgusting male chauvinist pig!

    May 17, 2013 at 9:45 pm |
  10. SDCinNS

    Not the first time Robertson has strayed from Scripture – and when ever a preacher does, it's his own opinion (and usually wrong).

    May 17, 2013 at 9:44 pm |
    • twalk

      Old Pat has probably cheated on his wife, so that is why he thinks that way.

      May 17, 2013 at 10:41 pm |
  11. DW Duke

    Pat,
    Hint: http://www.seniorsandiego.com/champagne-village.html It is totally okay to "take a nap." 🙂

    May 17, 2013 at 9:44 pm |
  12. dd

    Apparently Pat has never read a little tablet called the 10 Commandments!!!!!!

    May 17, 2013 at 9:42 pm |
  13. blessed

    this man is not in his right mind.

    May 17, 2013 at 9:39 pm |
  14. yeni

    Well, I'm gay and agnostic, don't have much time for religion,
    but, I never mind Pat Robertson. I mean , he's full of it, but , he is an almost an icon and so much comic relief, even if it is dark comedy.
    Come one guys, are you really surprised Pat came out with this foolishness? I'd have been more shocked if he came out with something sensible and helpful about relationships. Yeah, right.

    May 17, 2013 at 9:39 pm |
  15. afnmvet

    Well as long as that tax free money keeps rolling in.........Haven't we had enough of these religious zealots telling us what we should and shouldn't be doing?

    May 17, 2013 at 9:38 pm |
  16. fred

    Shrug.

    May 17, 2013 at 9:38 pm |
  17. Light of Purest Love and Truth

    Mr. Robertsen must be careful with this words with all the sinners about trying to tarnish his good name as a servant of the Lord. I am sure those so called press types are like these vile athiest people leaving their nasty comment on here. You can count on it that many of these vile sinners are the same fornicators that are trying to change the laws in our God blessed country. All these sinners should be trembling on the ground begging for His mercy. But they know not that His time is near! The mark has been put upon the land! It is time to repent and accept His love or you will die a thousand deaths soon burning each time. Amen.

    May 17, 2013 at 9:37 pm |
    • yeni

      your smokin crack.

      May 17, 2013 at 9:40 pm |
    • K. Bees

      Judge not that ye may be judged.

      May 17, 2013 at 9:51 pm |
    • lionlylamb

      Light of Purest Love and Truth,

      Walk placidly amidst the noises and wastefulness ever hoping to find peace and stilled waters. 🙂 😦 🙂

      May 17, 2013 at 9:52 pm |
  18. nc1965

    It's OK for a man to be unfaithful.

    Why?

    Because a man of God says so......though the bible speaks against it.

    May 17, 2013 at 9:36 pm |
  19. J

    Sweet Jesus.

    May 17, 2013 at 9:34 pm |
  20. Rebecca

    Well, Pat Robertson is a typical right wingnut. Why is anyone surprised at what he says, when he has always talked like that? Having read the Bible through a number of times, and also looking at Christianity in its historical perspective... it is pretty sleazy.

    May 17, 2013 at 9:34 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.