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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. Anthony

    the reason why this Idiot with a bible said, "He cheated on you. Well, he’s a man. OK.”, is due to the fact that he himself has a child out of wedlock, and probably has had many adulterous affiars himself

    May 20, 2013 at 11:06 am |
  2. kenman

    Wow, anti-Christian CNN, you're really milking this for all it's worth!

    May 20, 2013 at 11:04 am |
    • Observer

      It's gotta be tough for you to see Pat Robertson's world class hypocrisy exposed.

      May 20, 2013 at 11:09 am |
    • James PDX

      It's only fair, seeing as how Pat Robertson hypocritically milked his self-righteousness for all it was worth for decades.

      May 20, 2013 at 11:24 am |
    • Anti-Christian

      Anti-Christian USA.

      May 20, 2013 at 11:32 am |
    • ellid

      How is pointing out the lunacy of a crackpot fundamentalist "anti-Christian"?

      May 20, 2013 at 11:55 am |
    • Godoflunaticscreation

      Oh I guess they should go back to attacking muslims, then you would feel better. Im sorry but reporting christians idiocy is not anti anything, it's called reporting. Maybe you guys should put together one of those bs stories about satanists again, complete with made up "news". Christians are anti America, anti peace, anti women's rights and anti education! You sound like a bigot hypocrite.

      May 20, 2013 at 12:42 pm |
    • sam stone

      So the vaunted Christian Persecution Complex rears it's pious head

      May 20, 2013 at 1:50 pm |
  3. Seymore

    Pat Robertsom=KING OF THE IGNORANT.

    May 20, 2013 at 11:01 am |
  4. Anthony

    i cant wait till this bigot with a tv show, is removed from this earth once and for all.

    May 20, 2013 at 11:00 am |
    • Larry

      And it appears you are the one with hatred and bigotry.. nice going Ant.

      May 20, 2013 at 11:50 am |
  5. faith

    "tallulah13
    Actually, Joe, the context was clear and offensive. None of your silly attempts at diversion alter that.
    And frankly, I don't believe in god because there is no evidence that any god exists. You are simply clutching at a fairy tale in the vain hope that you will be saved from your own mortality."

    don't let dodo find out taliban. she demands loyalty and 100 percent commitment! right dodo?

    May 20, 2013 at 10:50 am |
    • faith

      dodo b inciting her fellow nazis to kill all xtards cause we demand prayer at race car events.

      May 20, 2013 at 10:54 am |
    • faith

      she and the 1 or 2 people she's conned into worshiping her honestly blieve she has an IQ of 75

      c what we r dealin wit?

      May 20, 2013 at 10:56 am |
    • Observer

      Here's what a real (not someone's delusional) Nazi said:

      “I believe today that I am acting in the sense of the Almighty Creator. By warding off the Jews I am fighting for the Lords work.”
      - Adolph Hitler, 1936, Reichstag, Berlin

      May 20, 2013 at 11:07 am |
    • Bill Deacon

      Where is my faith? – even deep down, right in, there is nothing but emptiness & darkness. – My God – how painful is this unknown pain. It pains without ceasing. – I have no faith. – I dare not utter the words & thoughts that crowd in my heart – & make me suffer untold agony. So many unanswered questions live within me – I am afraid to uncover them – because of the blasphemy – If there be God, – please forgive me. – Mother Teresa

      May 20, 2013 at 11:15 am |
    • faith

      well girls, u got me. jesus never struggled.

      god, y r u forsaking me?

      sorry ladies.

      May 20, 2013 at 11:42 am |
  6. eell

    So Pat thinks that the "boys will be boys" excuse is okay? Makes me wonder what Pat's been up to.

    May 20, 2013 at 10:48 am |
  7. ReuReu

    Pat Robertson?! I thought he was dead. However, his answer makes me think he's probably committed adultery. Also, in the words of Pat Robertson, God must be very angry with the people of Oklahoma, due to the tornadoes out there. That is how it works, right Pat? I know you've blamed-it on the gays when tornadoes and even hurricanes hit major metropolitan areas. Thus, be sure to run for the storm shelter, if you happened to commit that adultery with a man.

    May 20, 2013 at 10:47 am |
  8. tonyl

    Pat Robertson is a freaking pathetic American disgrace. He is one of the main reasons for the GOP and right wing losing popularity. He is making excuses for infidelity. This is a Christian message to the women.

    May 20, 2013 at 10:44 am |
    • faith

      o, poor baby

      get a job dodo

      May 20, 2013 at 10:46 am |
  9. faith

    faith
    "Observer
    faith,
    Jesus never got into juvenile name-calling but preached the Golden Rule. Obviously you are nothing like him. He was no hypocrite."
    well well well. lookie thar. it do blieve

    WELL GOLLY SARGE!

    4 a punk witch who swears 24/7 she don't blieve in jesus, she's more devout than her lover boy, adolf the christian.

    May 20, 2013 at 10:24 am |
    • faith

      Observer
      Joseph,
      Heaven may be close to empty if God doesn't like hypocrites.

      u'll never no, dodo lol

      ain't she sweet? what does she care?

      May 20, 2013 at 10:42 am |
    • faith

      where's our rectum sidearm lover girl, btw?

      May 20, 2013 at 10:43 am |
    • faith

      she and her 250 handles have a busy day 2day. they don't work so Murdock will post all day right here, won't chas Dorothy?

      May 20, 2013 at 10:45 am |
    • The real Tom

      Your therapist must have a field day.

      May 20, 2013 at 10:56 am |
    • faith

      my the rapist is not with dodo bible lol dog won't bone lol on Tusday with fish.

      May 20, 2013 at 3:55 pm |
  10. ed dugan

    I love it when these evangelicals tell us how it really is and how to live our lives. Robertson is totally irrelevant and has been since he first appeared on the stage. Only people who have never had an original thought of their own believe that crap. Notice how Joseph, in his posts, keeps frothing at the mouth and quoting that book of christian fiction called the bible. I think the bible says we will always have poor with us. Unfortunately I think we will always have these nutcases with us as well. They won't go away but most of the time they are easy to ignore.

    May 20, 2013 at 10:23 am |
    • Bermille

      He's basically saying he has done the same so everyone else should be free to do it as well.

      May 20, 2013 at 10:31 am |
  11. Observer

    Joseph,

    It's all about Christian HYPOCRISY. Like a huge number of Christians, Pat Robertson is a world-class hypocrite who picks and chooses which sins to make an issue of. He picks on gays who were BORN THAT WAY, but excuses heteros because they were BORN THAT WAY. It's all hypocrisy and ignorance.

    May 20, 2013 at 10:14 am |
    • Joseph

      First of all, that's not true. Second, even if it were, you've never been called on to repent and call Pat Robertson Lord. So it's a moot point. You've been called on to repent and call Jesus Lord, and Jesus has never sinned, period. And you're avoidance of that proves that you are as much a HYPOCRITE as you accuse others of being. What about you? What have done to deal with sin and error in your life? Nothing I'm sure because those who really do realize that they need mercy from Christ to truly deal with their own sin, and that produces humility and mercy toward others. And that is NOT what you are interested in. You are interested in tearing down the gospel of Christ, period, end of story.

      May 20, 2013 at 10:21 am |
    • Observer

      Joseph,

      Be honest with yourself. Therre are FAR FAR MORE Christian ADULTERERS who have remarried than there are TOTAL number of gays. How many churches have EVER campaigned against re-marriage compared to those fighting gay marriage?

      Get real.

      May 20, 2013 at 10:24 am |
    • faith

      a huge number?

      dodo's done pollin. she noed!

      May 20, 2013 at 10:26 am |
    • Observer

      Joseph,

      What do you think of a Christian like faith. Read her comments and see if she is following Jesus's example.

      May 20, 2013 at 10:29 am |
    • faith

      joe, u must b new. dodo is god. she knoes all. she don't need 4giveness. she grants it.

      "What have done to deal with sin and error in your life?"

      May 20, 2013 at 10:30 am |
    • Science

      Peachy faith and the red thingy ?

      May 20, 2013 at 10:56 am |
    • Bible Clown©

      "Jesus has never sinned, period." That YOU know of. I heard He got pulled over drunk driving a big SUV and was all "Don't you know who I AM, man? My daddy's important. You can kiss your job goodbye!" Are you Facebook friends with Him? Send Him a tweet.

      May 20, 2013 at 3:53 pm |
  12. Daniel Maddigan

    Don't hide this monster behind Jesus Christ. He and his fellow republican nazis are responsible for millions of murders.

    May 20, 2013 at 10:07 am |
    • Joseph

      He's not being hidden. If he is a "monster" we all are. If we're not Christians, Jesus says that our father is the devil. I can't think of anything that's more monstrous than that. The difference between a Christian and you is that a Christian has humbled himself, mourned over his sin, and is now merciful toward other sinners because he knows that he has received mercy. One's like you are entirely different. You still love your sin, which is why you look for any opportunity to crucify anyone who tells you of the gospel. There's no humility in that. None at all. Nothing. Nada. Why don't you really be a man and admit your sin before Christ today, tell everyone that you're a sinner and have asked for forgiveness and will now seek to be kind to others, especially your wife? But you won't because you're motive in being against Robertson isn't zeal for what's right, but rather ceasing any occasion to throw mud at anyone who represents the gospel because you love your sin. I know that because it's been that way throughout history. Jesus even said, as recorded in the gospels, that it would be like that. You're nothing new.

      May 20, 2013 at 10:17 am |
    • Observer

      Joseph,

      "The difference between a Christian and you is that a Christian has humbled himself, mourned over his sin"

      Baloney. A huge number of Christians totally IGNORE their sins and pick on others. Get into the real world. Just saying "I'm a sinner" is no excuse tor continuing the "sins" and picking on others.

      May 20, 2013 at 10:21 am |
    • Joseph

      I'm talking about a true Christ. Of course there are people in church like that. It's always been that way, but a true Christian is humble and merciful toward others. You need to stop looking at the errors of others and start dealing with yourself. When you stand before God, if you try to use the failings of others as an excuse for not having repented and believed the gospel of Christ yourself, it's not going to be seen by Christ as a valid excuse. Think of the experience of so many children and the child and his brother both did something wrong. The one tried the excuse that "he (his brother) did it too" but your parents said "too bad, you should have known better."

      You can argue with me all day, but one day you will have to argue with Christ, and I can promise you, you will not prevail.

      May 20, 2013 at 10:27 am |
    • Observer

      Joseph,

      Heaven may be close to empty if God doesn't like hypocrites.

      May 20, 2013 at 10:31 am |
    • sam stone

      "You can argue with me all day, but one day you will have to argue with Christ, and I can promise you, you will not prevail."

      Fvck you and your empty proxy threats, Joey

      May 20, 2013 at 10:51 am |
    • Bible Clown©

      "one day you will have to argue with Christ" I wouldn't give Him the time of day. He's welcome to tag along behind me and tell me how totally justified He is when He sends a tsunami or a mass-murderer or lets some girls get kidnapped for years, but I doubt I'd pay any attention. Seems as if you spend a lot of time fantasizing about Jesus there, Joseph. Do you write fan-fics?

      May 20, 2013 at 3:49 pm |
  13. rockysfan

    He cheated on you. Well, he’s a man. OK.”
    Really? And you pretend to be a man of GOD? Really? Any wonder why people are leaving the churches in droves. You can make this stupidity up!
    No, dearie, the advice he should have given you was: If you can't forgive him, divorce him as you will only destroy what is left of your marriage without trust. Leave him and move on.

    May 20, 2013 at 10:04 am |
  14. Joseph

    The hypocrites who write these articles take things dramatically out of context because they are hostile to the gospel and look for any tiny misspoken word to totally jump on. And why? It's because they are hostile to the gospel of Christ, which convicts men and women of sin, points them to their need of a savior and of repentance, and they don't want that because they love their sin. Jesus says that means they are enemies of God, which has been proven throughout history when people would everything from mock Christians to burn them at the stake. They're just doing the same. If they argued with Jesus, who rose from the dead because he had no sin, then they will argue with his imperfect followers even thought we admit our sin and only point them to our hope in Christ.

    May 20, 2013 at 9:56 am |
    • Colin

      Ha, ha, the creator of the Universe fvcked your wife, ha, ha.

      May 20, 2013 at 9:58 am |
    • tallulah13

      Actually, Joe, the context was clear and offensive. None of your silly attempts at diversion alter that.

      And frankly, I don't believe in god because there is no evidence that any god exists. You are simply clutching at a fairy tale in the vain hope that you will be saved from your own mortality.

      May 20, 2013 at 10:09 am |
    • Not Quite Joseph......

      Joseph, it's not that people are attacking Christ. The issue is you have a person who has proclaimed themselves a messenger of God's word continually making statements that seem to contradict His word. One, two, three misspoken words isn't an issue, but this tends to be more of a trend in Pat's behavior, not the occasional flub of words. Making statements that seem (strongly) to dismiss a males wandering behavior is why this story was written – not because anyone is attacking the Gospel.

      May 20, 2013 at 10:12 am |
    • ed dugan

      You really are full of it today. Sort of like sounding brass and tinkling cymbal.I love the way you sit in judgment of your fellow man, so sure you are right and he is wrong. No wonder church attendance is plummeting with a**holes like you in the pews. Robertson is a nutcase and everyone has known that since he first opened his mouth just to change feet.

      May 20, 2013 at 10:17 am |
    • Daniel Maddigan

      You can try to hide this murdering SOB behind Jesus Christ all you want but the stench of his history makes you a liar.

      May 20, 2013 at 10:19 am |
    • HA25

      Joseph – Pat Robertson is a fantastic symbol of the church – old and out of touch.

      You focus on Sin and assume the rejection of Sin makes someone an enemy of God. Maybe. But Sin is such a silly concept, filled implications of Guilt. People make mistakes. They are either mistakes, or crimes and we can forgive and punish accordingly.
      I fail to see how my lusting after my neighbor's wife is any affront to your God or any other God unless he's an Awfully jealous one that assumes only "He" can lust after women..
      In any case, your self-righteous diatribes convince few, if any, that your view of God is very welcoming.

      May 20, 2013 at 10:55 am |
    • Bible Clown©

      " they are hostile to the gospel and look for any tiny misspoken word to totally jump on" No, you crackhead, we're commenting on an article about Pat Robertson once again babbling out stuff that Pat Robertson disagrees with. We're commenting on the fact that he's not properly representing his own positions in his own speeches because his mind is wandering away. I don't believe in religion, but it should be represented in discussions by someone who is in control of himself instead of an old bigot in Depends™.

      May 20, 2013 at 3:44 pm |
  15. Daniel Maddigan

    This Nazi SOB should be in a Guatemalan prison along with his friend Efrain Rios Montt who is charged with genocide and crimes against humanity. It was Robertson who funded his crimes and publicly supported this monster on his 700 club.

    May 20, 2013 at 9:38 am |
    • Bible Clown©

      Yeah, being easily deceived is not good when you are in the "faith" business.

      May 20, 2013 at 9:42 am |
    • Daniel Maddigan

      Deceived my a$$. He's a criminal along with all the other "christian" bible thumpers like Falwell that actively enabled Central American genocide With the Reagan administration. May they all rot in hell..

      May 20, 2013 at 9:52 am |
    • H

      He should be in jail for what? For exercising free speech?

      May 20, 2013 at 9:54 am |
    • Daniel Maddigan

      Genocide!

      May 20, 2013 at 9:55 am |
    • Joseph

      That's a lie from someone who is just hostile and bitter toward the gospel of Christ. You ought to be thoroughly ashamed of yourself.

      May 20, 2013 at 9:57 am |
    • Daniel Maddigan

      Just google the two names Robertson and Rios Montt and you will get the whole story. This is the trouble with the country. Nobody knows anything about American history.

      May 20, 2013 at 10:02 am |
    • Joseph

      And I suppose Jesus was after money too? What about Paul who said, "I suffer the loss of all things that I may gain Christ?" Paul often lived in prisons for his testimony when all he would have had to have done to be released was to renounce the gospel, but he didn't. The evidence is there that there are many, even most, pastors who are not in it for money. That's not the issue. The issue is that you, and people like you, are hostile toward the gospel, so you look for any excuse to throw mud and lie because you don't like that the gospel points out your sin. What is your sin? Are you and adulterer? Did you cheat on your wife and have you lost your marriage? Is that why you're bitter? Or are you just an atheist who can't stand to have someone, even the creator of the universe, who might know more than you and you don't want to admit it because you're proud and arrogant and you want to do it all your way. Whatever it is, I can tell you that the thing that makes you bitter to the gospel is your sin.

      May 20, 2013 at 10:03 am |
    • Daniel Maddigan

      This monster and his fellow republican nazis are responsible for the murder of millions of people.

      May 20, 2013 at 10:11 am |
    • Michel

      Joseph, you might want to check your facts before you call someone a liar.

      May 20, 2013 at 10:24 am |
    • Bible Clown©

      " you're proud and arrogant and you want to do it all your way" This perfectly describes your whole arrogant and prideful post. It must be nice being Best Friends with Jesus.

      May 20, 2013 at 1:44 pm |
    • Bible Clown©

      "an atheist who can't stand to have someone, even the creator of the universe, who might know more than you"

      I know a guy who has five university degrees. He could probably beat God at Scrabble. Why would I mind if other people know more than I do? I can call them up and ask them how to reinstall my video codecs. Did your mom let you have too much sugar or something?

      May 20, 2013 at 1:46 pm |
    • lol??

      maddigan sayz,
      "............Nobody knows anything about American history................"

      I've heard of the Alamo. DHS has plenty of bullets and the SS powers are being expanded.

      May 20, 2013 at 1:51 pm |
  16. clem

    He is a pig, period.

    May 20, 2013 at 9:25 am |
  17. John

    Dogs "wander a bit". Real men don't.

    May 20, 2013 at 9:15 am |
  18. weezer

    Now Pat says we can smoke weed AND cheat on our wives. As soon as he throws in drinkin' whiskey, I'm voting for him!

    May 20, 2013 at 9:10 am |
  19. Bible Clown©

    Clearly Robertson has lost control of his mouth and begun to say stuff he doesn't actually agree with. This is kicking him when he's down, folks. It's no fun arguing with a man who's lost his mind, like Robertson or Chad or that guy down on the corner with a boot on his head.

    May 20, 2013 at 9:05 am |
    • The real Tom

      He's STILL there? Dang. Give him a quarter, already.

      May 20, 2013 at 9:06 am |
    • sam stone

      don't forget to include Gopher and dead-cat-dreaming Austin

      May 20, 2013 at 9:33 am |
    • Bible Clown©

      The guy with the boot on his head is also running for president.

      May 20, 2013 at 9:43 am |
    • Bible Clown©

      "Vermin Supreme." I had to google for his name. He has more supporters than Pat Robertson now.

      May 20, 2013 at 9:44 am |
  20. The real Tom

    What I find amusing is the number of people who actually do not see his comments as anything but benign. They smack of a doddering old fool who is living in the past when women stayed home and dressed up at 5 o'clock so they'd look pretty for hubby.

    May 20, 2013 at 9:05 am |
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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.