VIRGINIA BEACH — On his Sunday broadcast of the 700 Club, Pat Robertson shocked a number of viewers in responding to a question about those who decide to have sex change operations.
Robertson’s comments made were during the Q&A segment of the broadcast, as he was fielded the question by co-host Terry Meeuwsen.
“I work with two people who have decided that they are females,” wrote a viewer named David. “I know what the Bible says about homosexuality, but is it wrong to refer to them as females since they have had their gender status changed in the eyes of the law?”
“Why would you have to refer to them as females?” Meeuwsen asked.
“I don’t understand all that, but I think that there are men who are trapped in a woman’s body,” Robertson replied. “It’s very rare, but it’s true.”
“And they want a sex change, and that is a very permanent thing, believe me, when you have certain body parts amputated and you are shot up with various kinds of hormones,” he continued. “It’s a radical procedure.”
Robertson then proceeded to explain that he did not see sex change operations as being sinful, but that he believes there is a difference between those who have their reproductive organs altered and those who simply refer to themselves as being of the opposite sex.
“I don’t think there’s any sin associated with that,” he said. “I don’t condemn somebody for doing that, [but] somebody who just says, ‘Well, I’m really a woman,’ I question the validity of that statement. You don’t count somebody as female unless they really are.”
Meeuwsen then commented that the viewer does not know his co-workers’ “intentions” or “their personal medical scenario.”
“It’s not for you to decide or to judge,” Robertson asserted.
While some have applauded Robertson’s statements as being “level-headed” and amicable toward those who have sought out sex change operations, others state that the 83-year-old televangelist’s response was far from Biblical.
“I don’t know what standard Mr. Robertson is using,” Dr. Paul Michael Raymond of New Geneva Christian Leadership Academy and Reformed Bible Church in Appomatox, Virginia told Christian News Network. “He’s probably trying to come up to the times, but the Scriptures are outside of time and they are relevant at all times, and we’re either going to bow to God’s word as the Divine standard of authority, or we’re going to rebel against it and create our own image and our own standard.”
He stated that to uphold the alteration of God’s creation is to insult the Creator Himself.
“If he believes that there are some men who are physiologically, hormonally men … with all the of the proper physiological and hormonal structures of a man–if he believes that they are trapped in women’s bodies, then he is denying the sovereign God’s ability to create a man [as] a man and a woman a woman,” Raymond explained. “[W]hen a man says that he is trapped in a woman’s body, and he wants to be a woman, he’s really flying in the face of providence and how God made him.”
“And I do believe it is a sin,” he continued. “I believe the sin is fundamentally more than just wanting to be a woman, but I think [the issue] fundamentally is that these individuals just want to be God. They want to recreate themselves in their own idea and in their own image.”
In regard to Robertson’s assertion that the viewer was not to judge his co-workers about why they have decided to now appear feminine, Raymond said that most who claim that Christians are not to judge are inconsistent about their contention.
“We are called to judge righteous judgment,” he stated, referring to the words of Jesus in John 7:24. “If you don’t judge, then you can’t judge anything.”
“I would ask these individuals [who state that Christians should never judge], ‘Have you ever disciplined your child and told them not to touch a hot iron or not to smack their sibling?'” Raymond stated, and then added facetiously, “Well, then you’ve judged. Maybe you shouldn’t judge your child. Maybe you should have let your child do what was right in his or her own eyes, because you are not being consistent.”
He stated that those who struggle with gender identity issues need to be helped lovingly through Biblical counseling and not left to do as they please.
“[W]e’re called to minister,” Raymon explained. “We have to show them the right way like a child who says, ‘I’m going to jump off the roof because I watched the Superman movie and I think I can fly as well.’ Well, no, you’re going to get hurt if you do that. We have to show them the right way as opposed to the wrong way.”
He said that the assertion that Christians should never make a judgment in dividing right from wrong is simply a mirage to justify selective sins.
“It’s pulled out always as a convenience to excuse and not to put someone on the spot, because people like to be loved by everyone,” Raymond stated. “But at the end of the day, either we’re going to be acceptable before the throne of grace or we’re not. You can’t be everybody’s friend. You have to speak the truth.”