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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. apollothor

    He is a king of stupid responses. How does any thinking person take him seriously.

    May 21, 2013 at 9:16 pm |
    • Sweet

      Ay, there's the rub.

      May 21, 2013 at 10:26 pm |
  2. reality2012

    Looks like a combination of George Bush and the evil Leprechaun (Warwick Davis).

    May 21, 2013 at 6:14 pm |
  3. Bible Clown©

    And as this discussion fades, he actually has gone on to blame the people injured and killed by tornadoes for not being religious enough. The guy is an American Ayatollah.

    May 21, 2013 at 4:42 pm |
    • In Santa we trust

      yeah those children should have known better at their age

      May 21, 2013 at 4:44 pm |
  4. Ed McElhaney

    I'll bet that he is a big fan of the Westboro Baptist Church.

    This makes me wonder how Alzheimers research is going, and is there room for one more in the study group?

    May 21, 2013 at 3:16 pm |
    • Chico

      No, Fred Phelps of the Westboro bigots is a big time Democrat, hosted Al Gore in his house, and they're good friends. Gore has never denounced him. There are a bunch of pictures if you want to Google search. At the very time in '88 that Robertson was running for president, Phelps was very active in Democrat politics. They even gave a lot of support when he ran for mayor and US Senate. He's a Democrat, so, no, you should condemn the Westboro Baptist idiots as such. Clean up your own house first.

      May 21, 2013 at 4:18 pm |
  5. cowboybob

    Pat is "cool" for 83, he has a heart of a young man. We boys at the ranch really like him.

    May 21, 2013 at 3:14 pm |
  6. Joe

    This statement appears to have some validity. What has happened to us since 1998? Go ahead and flame me................

    "“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."

    May 21, 2013 at 2:15 pm |
    • Bible Clown©

      "This is not a message of hate; this is a message of redemption." I heard J.B. Stoner say the exact same thing once, right before I threw a tomato at him.

      May 21, 2013 at 2:24 pm |
    • Duane

      So what did God have against the dinosaurs? Apparently they were becoming too gay. God is LOVE. That is the single most important take from the Bible.

      May 22, 2013 at 2:09 am |
  7. Tracy

    I wonder what Pat's comments would have been if it was the wife that cheated??? Girls will be girls.............I think not!!!! Another example why old white guys are SOOOOOOOOOO out of touch with our country!!!!! Go to pray with Rush Pat and may God have mercy on your soul!!!

    May 21, 2013 at 1:49 pm |
  8. David Ridge

    Why should it not surprise us that CNN according to their irrational biases that they dig up the past on Dear Old Mr. Robertson's?
    I am calling foul on this one!

    May 21, 2013 at 1:27 pm |
    • Bible Clown©

      "they dig up the past on Dear Old Mr. Robertson's?" He said that stuff two days ago. Today he says the people harmed by the tornadoes weren't godly enough. He needs to have his shoulder blades kicked loose and his %%%% shoved in his mouth.

      May 21, 2013 at 2:26 pm |
  9. science

    This was in there to faith the ................peach...............Chadie...........No red horn-y thingy needed !

    Whom ever is doing the deleting on article below................you know..............thanks.........have a great life !

    http://www.richarddawkins.net/news_articles/2013/5/5/when-christians-become-a-hated-minority#

    Human stem cell cloning: 'Holy Grail' or techno-fantasy?

    By David King, Special to CNN

    updated 10:40 AM EDT, Fri May 17, 2013

    http://www.cnn.com/2013/05/17/opinion/human-cloning-king/index.html?iref=allsearch

    Cloning stem cells: What does it mean?

    By Elizabeth Landau, CNN

    updated 9:20 AM EDT, Mon May 20, 2013

    http://www.cnn.com/2013/05/18/health/stem-cells-cloning/index.html?iref=allsearch

    Peace

    May 21, 2013 at 8:24 am |
  10. faith

    i really love dodo

    how was work observer?

    May 21, 2013 at 8:18 am |
  11. faith

    gives me somethin to do dodo

    May 21, 2013 at 8:13 am |
  12. Bible Clown©

    I'm looking at news of the tornadoes and wondering if they have Pat safely away from microphones today.

    May 21, 2013 at 7:31 am |
    • Truth Prevails :-)

      Well he can't call them godless. Many have spoken of praying while taking cover and as always their prayers went unanswered.

      May 21, 2013 at 7:40 am |
    • faith

      just remember, if not 4 us, more planes would be at ta c kin us right now!

      May 21, 2013 at 8:08 am |
    • DR75

      Not true, Truth Prevails... just saw a report where a women said her and her family huddled together in a room and prayed for God's protection. The entire house was destroyed, except the room they were in. I would say that was an anwered prayer.

      May 21, 2013 at 10:40 am |
    • Bible Clown©

      " I would say that was an anwered prayer." So you and Pat are ok with the dead being people who didn't pray loud enough? and what were those lucky people's names? Got a link to the story? Sure it's not just made-up?

      May 21, 2013 at 10:50 am |
    • faith

      "Truth Prevails 🙂
      Well he can't call them godless. Many have spoken of praying while taking cover and as always their prayers went unanswered."

      thanks truth

      May 21, 2013 at 1:12 pm |
  13. ronvan

    FREEDOM OF SPEECH? Right! We are seeing more & more "limitations" on this issue! "Well he is a man, OK"! For me, this is a tacit approval of adultery! Now we have the back peddeling, that is not what I meant, it was taken out of context, etc.. Public figures are excellent at saying something and then trying to say we did not understand its meaning. WHO is the fool?

    May 21, 2013 at 6:54 am |
    • Bible Clown©

      " WHO is the fool?" Pat Robertson. Didn't you read the article? His "freedom of speech" is undiminished (the guy owns a tv network) and so is our freedom to laugh at him and think he's an old fool.

      May 21, 2013 at 10:47 am |
    • faith

      i never had secksual re la tion s wit dat wom an

      May 21, 2013 at 1:14 pm |
    • lol??

      ""fool"
      occurs 66 times in 62 verses in the KJV "

      May 21, 2013 at 9:48 pm |
  14. Science

    ETHICS.......and MORALS..............whom ever is doing the deleting has NONE

    Hey James Madison................religion has none it looks like.............with the comments on this blog.

    The Big question is ETHICS ! does religion have any ?

    The Ethics of Resurrecting Extinct Species

    Apr. 8, 2013 — At some point, scientists may be able to bring back extinct animals, and perhaps early humans, raising questions of ethics and environmental disruption.

    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/04/130408165955.htm

    May 21, 2013 at 6:17 am | Report abuse |

    http://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2013/05/05/when-christians-become-a-hated-minority/comment-page-109/#comment-2355282

    May 21, 2013 at 6:22 am |
  15. Reality

    As per Father Edward Schillebeekx, the famous contemporary Christian theologian, God (if one exists, my addition) does not know the Future. From his book, Church: The Human Story of God,

    "Therefore the historical future is not known even to God; otherwise we and our history would be merely a puppet show in which God holds the strings.

    For God, too, history is an adventure, an open history for and of men and women."

    And if God does not know the future, Mohammed, Jesus, Isaiah, the Robertsons and the Grahams surely do (did) not.

    In two sentences of profound common sense, Schillebeeckx has reduced much of the OT, NT and Koran to the wishful thinking of many ancient scribes.

    Schillebeeckx also has a different take on hell. He reasons that god does not tolerate imperfection in his spiritual realm. Therefore, any soul dying in mortal sin will simply disappear since hell the imperfect state does not exist. No hell, no Satan.

    May 21, 2013 at 12:00 am |
    • DR75

      Wow... apparently Father Edward Schillebeekx has never actually read the bible. He speaks completely contrary to God's doctrine, and the bible defines that as a false prophet. The bible says "The heart of man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps." (Prov 16:9) For man, our life is unknown, we try our bust to plan ahead, but God has already established our path. The entire book of Revelation is about what is to come, what God has already written. And as far as those who speak in contrary, the Word says, "I appeal to you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them." (Rom 16:17) We need to steer clear of the Father Edward Schillebeekx's of the world.

      May 21, 2013 at 10:53 am |
    • Reality

      "Nineteenth-century agnostic Robert G. Ingersoll branded Revelation "the insanest of all books".[30] Thomas Jefferson omitted it along with most of the Biblical canon, from the Jefferson Bible, and wrote that at one time, he "considered it as merely the ravings of a maniac, no more worthy nor capable of explanation than the incoherences of our own nightly dreams." [31]

      Martin Luther once "found it an offensive piece of work" and John Calvin "had grave doubts about its value."[32]

      May 21, 2013 at 2:51 pm |
  16. Louis

    What a jerk! I, for one, won't shed any tears when this idiot's God calls him home. The sooner, the better.

    May 20, 2013 at 9:21 pm |
    • faith

      amen lou.

      me neither

      May 21, 2013 at 7:52 am |
  17. 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."

    dodo u preach it girl. don't she sound just like the retarded judgmental fundamental xtards she detests? lol

    May 20, 2013 at 9:13 pm |
    • faith

      "Shellie
      He really just needs to shut the Hell up. He makes all Christians look like nut jobs. Why do they keep him around???!!!!"

      not everyone thinks like lil fatty sambo, that's y

      May 20, 2013 at 9:19 pm |
    • Science

      Kepler or not, we'll find life in space.............as pages go bye bye peachy faith ?

      http://www.cnn.com/2013/05/20/opinion/urry-kepler-malfunction/index.html?hpt=op_t1

      Evolving Planets Get a Bumpy Ride

      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/03/120305131756.htm

      Where Does All Earth's Gold Come From? Precious Metals the Result of Meteorite Bombardment, Rock Analysis Finds

      Not by the horn-y red thingy CHAD !

      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/09/110907132044.htm

      Cloning stem cells: What does it mean?...............no fairy in the sky needed .............faith/chard

      By Elizabeth Landau, CNN

      http://www.cnn.com/2013/05/18/health/stem-cells-cloning/index.html?hpt=he_c2

      May 20, 2013 at 9:32 pm |
    • Science

      Hey faith.......Chadie...........the peach........... did you learn or hear from that Discovery show about the LAND BRIDGE ?

      How many years ago did we cross into North America ?

      May 21, 2013 at 7:22 am |
  18. Observer

    The Most Stressful Job in America:
    Pat Robertson's translator

    May 20, 2013 at 6:48 pm |
    • faith

      "Observer
      The Most Stressful Job in America:
      Pat Robertson's translator"

      playing 200 plus different but exactly the same nazi, god-hating, fascist morons and honestly thinks she's kind a slick even though she's unemployed and her future is blacker than hell.

      May 20, 2013 at 9:24 pm |
    • Observer

      faith,

      Speaking of translators, could you get what you said translated into English?.

      May 20, 2013 at 11:30 pm |
    • faith

      sure

      I LOVE DODO!

      May 21, 2013 at 7:53 am |
    • Bible Clown©

      "get what you said translated into English?" faith believes that he or she knows things about other posters because of the super special power of xtard. "dodo" is one of these imaginary enemies.

      May 21, 2013 at 8:33 am |
    • faith

      "Bible Clown©
      "get what you said translated into English?" faith believes that he or she knows things about other posters because of the super special power of xtard. "dodo" is one of these imaginary enemies."

      she loves dodo

      May 21, 2013 at 1:19 pm |
  19. KSM

    I read up to...“Is he handsome? Start focusing on these things and essentially fall in love all over again.” Because that is the first thing I think about when someone cheats..."Man that SOB is handsome...well I just better go back and make sure I am enough woman for this handsome SOB"...Religion...is the biggest joke ANYONE ever played on another...and look how many have fallen for it!! LMFAO

    May 20, 2013 at 5:38 pm |
    • faith

      I NO I NO

      May 21, 2013 at 7:54 am |
  20. clevercandi

    I guess the fact that adultery violates one of his god's top ten laws is irrelevant. I mean, it is almost all the way at the bottom at number 7, right behind "thou shalt not kill"...oh, wait....

    May 20, 2013 at 5:36 pm |
    • faith

      Ain't it terrable? just terrawble!

      May 21, 2013 at 7:55 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.