Happy 92nd Birthday Pat!
1960's era CBN Station ID: "THE CHRISTIAN BROADCASTING NETWORK Presents the following….."
On October 1st, 1961, Pat Robertson, a Bible in hand, stepped in front of a television camera for the first time. While that inaugural broadcast barely made it around the block, it was all part of "the plan" - to spread the gospel around the world through the art and science of television. October 1st, 2021 marked Pat’s 60th year on television.
Pat stated: "I wanted to be part of God's plan. And I think His plan is for world evangelization and to bring millions to the kingdom, and He's let me be part of it."
By any standard, his work in and through television has been incredible, as Pat emerged as a media innovator, cultural influencer and spiritual leader and mentor to people all over the world. Franklin Graham put things in perspective.
Franklin Graham states: "There is Holy Spirit Power in the Gospel message and, of course, this network…. Pat's life has touched so many millions of people with this power of God; the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ that has transformed and changed lives by the millions, and I just thank God for his life and for his ministry."
Vice President of CBN International, Ben Edwards, says:
"He has to be perhaps the, if not the longest-running host of a continuous television program in American history, certainly one of the longest-running. And he has just broken enormous amounts of ground in terms of live television and producing programming and hosting programming."
A television pioneer in his own right, Pat was always an early adaptor, using the latest broadcast and television technologies to get CBN's flagship show, The 700 Club, to viewers everywhere. From cable to satellite, and now, the internet, the show, and the gospel are accessible to practically every person on the planet.
CBN Vice President Edwards continues: "So he's always been an innovator and a visionary and a creative person, just in a general sense of television, not even religious television, just in terms of television."
Also, under Pat's leadership, The 700 Club has taken many forms. Using indigenous hosts and programming to reach people through their culture and in their native language. CBN has also produced films, 24-hour online news and, of course, the enormously popular children's animated series Superbook that started in 1981 and was re-imagined in 2009.
Pat's influence in the secular world is also remarkable. Through thoughtful commentary and by engaging political and cultural leaders, he's given voice to Christian thought and views on the social and political issues facing our world.
The 700 Club interview soundbites beginning in 1978:
The President of Egypt, Anwar Sadat: "To join hearts and voices in prayer for peace in the Middle East."
The President of The United States, Ronald Reagan in an interview Pat Robertson: "A balanced budget."
The President of Israel, Shimon Peres, then Israeli Foreign Minister in an interview Pat Robertson: "We are not enemies of China. We are not enemies of the Russians."
October 2, 2008, former Speaker of The House of Representatives, Newt Gingrich in an interview with Pat Robertson: “We have more energy than anywhere in the world, yet our government, our politicians are blocking us from the very solutions that would make it possible for us to ignore Saudi Arabia, Venezuela, or Russia or Iran and produce plenty of energy right here at home.”
General Mikael Flynn with Pat Robertson as he asks a question: "The Taliban and other types of radicals?"
Rob Allman, Vice President of CBN news.
Allman says: "I think Pat's contribution to religious broadcasting is that he took religious broadcasting into the mainstream."
The 700 Club interview soundbites from 1975 to 2016:
Righteous Among The Nations, Corrie ten Boom reads I Peter 4:14 in a 1975 interview with Pat Robertson: "If you are reproached for being Christ's followers, that's a great privilege.”
Former CBS Correspondent, Sharyl Attkisson in a 2016 interview with Pat Robertson: "As they avoid, in my opinion, stories that go against powers that be whether they are political interests, sometimes special interest or corporate interests."
CBN Vice President Allman continues: "Pat Robertson is simply a pioneer and a visionary."
December 17, 2014 Pat Robertson interviews Former NATO Supreme Allied Commander of Europe (SACEUR), General Wesley Clark: “General Clark, what do you learn when you are on the ground, does Putin [Vladimir Putin] try to stir up something to have a wider war? General Clark: "He [Vladimir Putin] is definitely putting the framework in place to use military power again. He [Vladimir Putin] has military and economic means to try and hurt Ukraine. "
Also, to Pat's credit, his efforts to break down racial barriers in the TV industry, American culture and the church. In fact, Ben Kinchlow, Pat's long-time co-host and friend, was the first African-American to co-host a daily TV show. Now deceased, Ben had this to say about his 20 years working alongside Pat.
Ben recalled: "We had the matchless privilege of being a part of what God was doing. And I could stand by Pat Robertson's side and hold up his hand and pray with him, and you know, cry with him, and laugh with him and see God do incredible things for people."
Which brings us back to "the plan". A plan that for 60 years has seen millions around the world find hope, healing, and salvation through faith in Jesus Christ.
Pat exclaims: "We have probably seen more people come to the Lord through CBN than any other organization in the world. But it wasn't me; it was God. So, He gets the glory. But it's amazing; it is simply amazing how many millions of people have come to Jesus.”
Happy 92nd birthday, Pat! Today, we celebrate your life and legacy!