In Depth with Pat Robertson (Ep. 2)

In Depth with Pat Robertson (Ep. 2)

Pat Robertson was a son of U.S. Senator before he founded The Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN) Inc. Hear his story and his dramatic experience with the Holy Spirit as host Stephen Strang goes in depth into Robertson's life and career.

30 Minutes • 3 months ago

Episode Notes

In-Depth with

Stephen Strang

Guest: Pat Robertson

 

Pat Robertson was a son of U.S. Senator before he founded The Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN) Inc.

 

Hear his story and his dramatic experience with the Holy Spirit as host Stephen Strang goes in depth into Robertson's life and career.

 

Introduction

Stephen Strang: Hello everyone, this is Stephen Strang and welcome to my new podcast In Depth with Stephen Strang. I have the privilege today to interview Pat Robertson In Depth. Thank you for agreeing to an interview. We just had a very nice interview for my new book Trump Aftershock. You've lived your life in front of a camera since 1961. A lot of people know a lot of things about you. But today, I want to kind of go in depth a little bit and talk about things that you have probably talked about in the past, but a lot of people don't know. Let’s start at the beginning. You are the were the son of a U.S. senator, and not very many people have that distinction. What was it like growing up with a father who is famous?

 

Pat Robertson: Well, I laughingly say first learned Mama then I learned Daddy and then I learned constituent. I was two years old when he went to Congress. I was always in the public life and I learned early on that you just don't take liberties when you're in that kind of a situation. It taught me restraint of the way I had to live. You just learn how to do that when your father was in Congress for a number of years. He was a key member of the Ways and Means Committee. Then he went on to the Senate where he served a number of years and he was chairman of an important committee. It was important life.

 

Stephen Strang: What would your father think about what's going on in politics today in our country?

 

Pat Robertson: Steve, he'd be horrified. He would literally be turning over in his grave. I remember when the Supreme Court ruled against prayer in the schools and Bible reading. He went before Sam Irving's committee in the Senate and gave testimony against that Supreme Court ruling. I later read what he had said, and it was almost word for word what I had said about the same thing. I mean, it's like his thoughts were coming back to me. But he would have been shocked and horrified. When he was there, they had what they called The Breakfast Group. There were Republicans and there were Democrats who met together and they studied the Bible and they prayed. They had breakfast every Wednesday, and it was a beautiful relationship. There wasn’t any of the rancor and the bitterness that we have now.

 

Stephen Strang: When you went to seminary and got to know Harald Bredesen. Harald's in heaven now, but I had the privilege of knowing him. Probably a lot of people have forgotten him and a lot of his peers, of course, are gone. You had a pretty dramatic experience with the Holy Spirit. What happened?

 

Pat Robertson: I had read in the Bible about these people that had these wonderful occurrences in their lives. The Old Testament prophets, the ones who met God, the head angels, they had all these things. I said, I don't have that and I want more. Of course, Harald was a preacher of the Holy Spirit and the baptism and he came to see me and I prayed with him. When I was in seminary, I was his assistant at his little church in Mount Vernon, New York. We used to pray on a Saturday. We would start praying at nine or 10 in the morning, and we would pray to midnight, walking up and down that church crying out to God. It was an incredible teaching. But my wife, the brilliant woman that she is said that you don't have to go to all those places. You can get the power of the Holy Spirit in your own living room. I said, well, thank you dear, and then I kept going off to these places. Then one night my son, my oldest son, was burning up with a fever.  My wife was a nurse, and we realized that this continued he might have permanent brain damage because we just couldn't get it under control. I was kneeling down with my hand on him and I was praying, I was saying Oh God, heal him, heal him. And the Lord showed me something. He said look, if you think you love that boy, I love him 1,000 times more than you do. Why don't you surrender him to me? I said, OK, Lord. I literally lifted him up into the presence of God. At that moment, the power of God touched him. The fever broke. And a short while after that, he got up and went to the bathroom was completely healed. I began to thank God. I just wanted to praise God, and I was praising him. And I was saying, thank you. The next thing I knew in my innermost being was coming this this language. I was praising God in another language. My wife was sitting there listening to it and wondering how long that had been going on. That was the beginning. After that extraordinary touch by God upon my son was when I was filled with the Spirit.

 

Stephen Strang: Well, now we look back on that and we call it the charismatic movement. It probably didn't have the name back then. Of course, I've spent my whole career covering that movement. Was it obvious to you back then what was happening or was this just something that happened in your own life and ministry?

 

Pat Robertson: Well, it was something that happened in my own life. I didn't think of any big movement, but I'll tell you what did happen. It was interesting. I was working with Harald and Harald was … they use the term in law, silly generous. He was a unique human being. Nobody I've ever seen like him. He was a total scatterbrain. But he was he was gloriously filled with the Spirit. We were working in his church and it was my birthday, March 22. We had a little party in the little social hall for my birthday. So, I went over there and we had the usual cake and cookies or whatever. Then I went to this church, and we were in a Gothic church, First Reformed Church in Mount Vernon, and there was one cross lit over there. I walked in and I said hello Harald, and Harald started doing …. I mean he was like a whirling dervish, he was clapping his hands and speaking in tongues. The message was, why will you be afraid of those who are the servants of Satan? The word was go and tell, go and tell. He said, I think I've got to share this business with Norman Vincent Peale. I said you've got delusions of grandeur, we’re not going to do that. The next morning at 7:30, I'm in my little apartment in Queens, New York. The telephone rang and it was Harald Bredesen on the phone. He asked me, what are you doing tonight? Well, you never tell Harold what you’re going to do because he might take you to some remote island somewhere. I said what you have in mind? He said, we're having dinner tonight with Mrs. Norman Vincent Peale. There was a fellow named Dick Simmons who was a Presbyterian, and there was Harald Bredesen who's Dutch Reformed and Lutheran and me. We went to Mrs. Peale’s beautiful apartment and we had dinner. When it was over, Harald stayed behind to pray with the two cooks. They were there praising God while we were with Mrs. Peale drinking coffee. We began to pray when Harald joined us. There was a message in tongues and the interpretation. Mrs. Peale then went from that meeting with us to Guideposts. Guideposts was that big magazine they had. They had a meeting and she said, I was just at my apartment with this Dutch Reformed, Presbyterian and Baptists guys and they were speaking in tongues and had a message in tongues. She said, I'm very interested. It was a fella named John Sherrill who was one of their editors. And John Sherrill was commissioned by Guideposts after that meeting to go and write on this thing. So he wrote a book called They Speak with Other Tongues. Harald had gotten him in touch with a guy named David Wilkerson, the skinny preacher who we had gotten to know in New York. He wrote a book called The Cross and the Switchblade. Those books were published widely, and they got in the hands of a group of Catholics at Duquesne University. They read The Cross and the Switchblade and they read They Speak with Other Tongues and they began asking God to be filled with the Holy Spirit. Out of that came the Catholic Charismatic Revival, and it came out of a message that the Lord had given Harald Bredesen on the day of my birthday in that little church when he was clapping his hands and spinning around … go and tell, go and tell. And that became the origin, if you will. of the so-called charismatic movement right there.

 

Stephen Strang: Well, it's exciting for me to hear this because I knew John Sherrill and considered him a mentor and he told me the story about the Catholics reading the book. I didn't really understand the connection with Mrs. Peale or with Harald. So, it's interesting to see your perspective, but I've used it as an example to tell authors that you'll write something and have no idea. Yes, they sold probably millions of copies, but The Cross and the Switchblade actually had a chapter, you may remember, where they found that the addicts who received the baptism of the Holy Spirit seem to be successful. He was telling this story to a Catholic priest who is visiting and the Catholic priests says, what? What are you talking about? So, they took a chapter and talked about the Baptism of the Holy Spirit. And it was actually that chapter and yes the whole story, but that chapter that influenced these Catholics. John Sherrill never would have had any idea when he was writing that book what would have come from that.

 

Pat Robertson: I was in this tiny little church. I mean, if we had 20 people a Sunday it was a big deal. There was nobody in the church. It was a dying church. I was there with Harold, and it was just crazy. I was seeking God and we used to pray by the hour for more of God. By the hour, day after day after day we were praying.

 

For the rest of Stephen’s interview with Pat Roberson, visit cpnshows.com.

 

Connect with Pat Robertson

·         At cbn.com

·         At cbnnews.com

·         On Twitter

Where to Find Stephen Strang on the Internet

·         The Strang Report on Charismamag.com

·         The Strang Report on cpnshows.com

·         On Twitter

·         On Facebook

Episode Notes

In-Depth with

Stephen Strang

Guest: Pat Robertson

 

Pat Robertson was a son of U.S. Senator before he founded The Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN) Inc.

 

Hear his story and his dramatic experience with the Holy Spirit as host Stephen Strang goes in depth into Robertson's life and career.

 

Introduction

Stephen Strang: Hello everyone, this is Stephen Strang and welcome to my new podcast In Depth with Stephen Strang. I have the privilege today to interview Pat Robertson In Depth. Thank you for agreeing to an interview. We just had a very nice interview for my new book Trump Aftershock. You've lived your life in front of a camera since 1961. A lot of people know a lot of things about you. But today, I want to kind of go in depth a little bit and talk about things that you have probably talked about in the past, but a lot of people don't know. Let’s start at the beginning. You are the were the son of a U.S. senator, and not very many people have that distinction. What was it like growing up with a father who is famous?

 

Pat Robertson: Well, I laughingly say first learned Mama then I learned Daddy and then I learned constituent. I was two years old when he went to Congress. I was always in the public life and I learned early on that you just don't take liberties when you're in that kind of a situation. It taught me restraint of the way I had to live. You just learn how to do that when your father was in Congress for a number of years. He was a key member of the Ways and Means Committee. Then he went on to the Senate where he served a number of years and he was chairman of an important committee. It was important life.

 

Stephen Strang: What would your father think about what's going on in politics today in our country?

 

Pat Robertson: Steve, he'd be horrified. He would literally be turning over in his grave. I remember when the Supreme Court ruled against prayer in the schools and Bible reading. He went before Sam Irving's committee in the Senate and gave testimony against that Supreme Court ruling. I later read what he had said, and it was almost word for word what I had said about the same thing. I mean, it's like his thoughts were coming back to me. But he would have been shocked and horrified. When he was there, they had what they called The Breakfast Group. There were Republicans and there were Democrats who met together and they studied the Bible and they prayed. They had breakfast every Wednesday, and it was a beautiful relationship. There wasn’t any of the rancor and the bitterness that we have now.

 

Stephen Strang: When you went to seminary and got to know Harald Bredesen. Harald's in heaven now, but I had the privilege of knowing him. Probably a lot of people have forgotten him and a lot of his peers, of course, are gone. You had a pretty dramatic experience with the Holy Spirit. What happened?

 

Pat Robertson: I had read in the Bible about these people that had these wonderful occurrences in their lives. The Old Testament prophets, the ones who met God, the head angels, they had all these things. I said, I don't have that and I want more. Of course, Harald was a preacher of the Holy Spirit and the baptism and he came to see me and I prayed with him. When I was in seminary, I was his assistant at his little church in Mount Vernon, New York. We used to pray on a Saturday. We would start praying at nine or 10 in the morning, and we would pray to midnight, walking up and down that church crying out to God. It was an incredible teaching. But my wife, the brilliant woman that she is said that you don't have to go to all those places. You can get the power of the Holy Spirit in your own living room. I said, well, thank you dear, and then I kept going off to these places. Then one night my son, my oldest son, was burning up with a fever.  My wife was a nurse, and we realized that this continued he might have permanent brain damage because we just couldn't get it under control. I was kneeling down with my hand on him and I was praying, I was saying Oh God, heal him, heal him. And the Lord showed me something. He said look, if you think you love that boy, I love him 1,000 times more than you do. Why don't you surrender him to me? I said, OK, Lord. I literally lifted him up into the presence of God. At that moment, the power of God touched him. The fever broke. And a short while after that, he got up and went to the bathroom was completely healed. I began to thank God. I just wanted to praise God, and I was praising him. And I was saying, thank you. The next thing I knew in my innermost being was coming this this language. I was praising God in another language. My wife was sitting there listening to it and wondering how long that had been going on. That was the beginning. After that extraordinary touch by God upon my son was when I was filled with the Spirit.

 

Stephen Strang: Well, now we look back on that and we call it the charismatic movement. It probably didn't have the name back then. Of course, I've spent my whole career covering that movement. Was it obvious to you back then what was happening or was this just something that happened in your own life and ministry?

 

Pat Robertson: Well, it was something that happened in my own life. I didn't think of any big movement, but I'll tell you what did happen. It was interesting. I was working with Harald and Harald was … they use the term in law, silly generous. He was a unique human being. Nobody I've ever seen like him. He was a total scatterbrain. But he was he was gloriously filled with the Spirit. We were working in his church and it was my birthday, March 22. We had a little party in the little social hall for my birthday. So, I went over there and we had the usual cake and cookies or whatever. Then I went to this church, and we were in a Gothic church, First Reformed Church in Mount Vernon, and there was one cross lit over there. I walked in and I said hello Harald, and Harald started doing …. I mean he was like a whirling dervish, he was clapping his hands and speaking in tongues. The message was, why will you be afraid of those who are the servants of Satan? The word was go and tell, go and tell. He said, I think I've got to share this business with Norman Vincent Peale. I said you've got delusions of grandeur, we’re not going to do that. The next morning at 7:30, I'm in my little apartment in Queens, New York. The telephone rang and it was Harald Bredesen on the phone. He asked me, what are you doing tonight? Well, you never tell Harold what you’re going to do because he might take you to some remote island somewhere. I said what you have in mind? He said, we're having dinner tonight with Mrs. Norman Vincent Peale. There was a fellow named Dick Simmons who was a Presbyterian, and there was Harald Bredesen who's Dutch Reformed and Lutheran and me. We went to Mrs. Peale’s beautiful apartment and we had dinner. When it was over, Harald stayed behind to pray with the two cooks. They were there praising God while we were with Mrs. Peale drinking coffee. We began to pray when Harald joined us. There was a message in tongues and the interpretation. Mrs. Peale then went from that meeting with us to Guideposts. Guideposts was that big magazine they had. They had a meeting and she said, I was just at my apartment with this Dutch Reformed, Presbyterian and Baptists guys and they were speaking in tongues and had a message in tongues. She said, I'm very interested. It was a fella named John Sherrill who was one of their editors. And John Sherrill was commissioned by Guideposts after that meeting to go and write on this thing. So he wrote a book called They Speak with Other Tongues. Harald had gotten him in touch with a guy named David Wilkerson, the skinny preacher who we had gotten to know in New York. He wrote a book called The Cross and the Switchblade. Those books were published widely, and they got in the hands of a group of Catholics at Duquesne University. They read The Cross and the Switchblade and they read They Speak with Other Tongues and they began asking God to be filled with the Holy Spirit. Out of that came the Catholic Charismatic Revival, and it came out of a message that the Lord had given Harald Bredesen on the day of my birthday in that little church when he was clapping his hands and spinning around … go and tell, go and tell. And that became the origin, if you will. of the so-called charismatic movement right there.

 

Stephen Strang: Well, it's exciting for me to hear this because I knew John Sherrill and considered him a mentor and he told me the story about the Catholics reading the book. I didn't really understand the connection with Mrs. Peale or with Harald. So, it's interesting to see your perspective, but I've used it as an example to tell authors that you'll write something and have no idea. Yes, they sold probably millions of copies, but The Cross and the Switchblade actually had a chapter, you may remember, where they found that the addicts who received the baptism of the Holy Spirit seem to be successful. He was telling this story to a Catholic priest who is visiting and the Catholic priests says, what? What are you talking about? So, they took a chapter and talked about the Baptism of the Holy Spirit. And it was actually that chapter and yes the whole story, but that chapter that influenced these Catholics. John Sherrill never would have had any idea when he was writing that book what would have come from that.

 

Pat Robertson: I was in this tiny little church. I mean, if we had 20 people a Sunday it was a big deal. There was nobody in the church. It was a dying church. I was there with Harold, and it was just crazy. I was seeking God and we used to pray by the hour for more of God. By the hour, day after day after day we were praying.

 

For the rest of Stephen’s interview with Pat Roberson, visit cpnshows.com.

 

Connect with Pat Robertson

·         At cbn.com

·         At cbnnews.com

·         On Twitter

Where to Find Stephen Strang on the Internet

·         The Strang Report on Charismamag.com

·         The Strang Report on cpnshows.com

·         On Twitter

·         On Facebook

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In Depth with Pat Robertson (Ep. 2)