Miracles might discriminate.
At least that’s what Pat Robertson thinks. On Monday’s episode of the “700 Club,” the televangelist said Ivy League schools are to blame for the lack of miracles taking place in the United States nowadays, Raw Story reports.
Robertson, 83, was responding to a viewer who asked why “amazing miracles” like people being raised from the dead, healing the blind and handicapped are more prevalent in Africa than in the United States.
“People overseas didn’t go to Ivy League schools,” Robertson said with a chuckle. “We’re so sophisticated, we think we’ve got everything figured out. We know about evolution, we know about Darwin, we know about all these things that says God isn’t real.”
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Robertson goes on to say that people living overseas lead simple lives where they question God less and are rewarded with miracles.
“We have been inundated with skepticism and secularism,” said Robertson, who received a law degree from Yale University. “And overseas, they’re simple, humble. You tell ‘em God loves ‘em and they say, ‘Okay, he loves me.’ You say God will do miracles and they say, ‘Okay, we believe him.’”
Robertson’s remarks have been criticized for labeling foreigners “simple” and Americans “sophisticated.”
But not everyone agrees.
“I also observe a much higher incidence of miracles with the less educated class of believers,” Olabode Ososami, a Nigerian pastor, said in an op-ed for the Christian Post. He points to a passage from the Gospel of Matthew where a Canaanite woman was rewarded for her faith in God.
“Imagine the response of the woman, if she had been a Harvard Law graduate …perhaps Jesus would have been sued for verbal abuse or even worse,” Ososami writes. In Africa, “she would weigh her alternatives and quickly conclude that her miracle is worth enduring the open humiliation,” he writes. “Faith would be an easier theme to grasp.”
A recent analysis conducted by the Pew Forum shows that sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America, the Caribbean and Europe house the largest Christian populations in the world. In fact, North America has only 12.3 percent of the world’s Christians – a number that is almost doubled in sub-Saharan Africa and Latin America.
Robertson has stirred up controversy before.
A day after his miracle comment, Robertson made headlines again for blaming a viewer’s “negative attitude” for their problems dealing with a chronic illness and financial struggles.
Back in 2005, he called for the assassination of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez (who died recently) on a broadcast of the “700 Club.” He has also said feminism leads to the belief in abortion, witchcraft and lesbianism and that Osama Bin Laden was following the Prophet Mohammed’s advice when he masterminded the 9/11 terrorist attacks.