Dr. Paul Crouch, the televangelist who cofounded the Trinity Broadcast Network, which provides a platform for many antigay “men of God” including Robert Jeffress, has died at age 79.
A note posted on TBN’s website indicated Crouch passed away yesterday following “a decade-long fight with degenerative heart disease.”
Crouch began his broadcasting career in the 1950s and founded TBN alongside his colorfully-coiffured wife Jan in 1973. Three years ago the network reached a settlement agreement with a former employee who claimed he was working in a not-so-Christian working environment.
While appearing on TBN, Jeffress used limp metaphors to explain what he considered God’s sex manual.
“You know, in the instruction manual, it said, now plug this into a 120 [volt] outlet,” he informed viewers. “Suppose I said, ‘Oh, I’m not going to follow those instructions, those are antiquated instructions. I’m going to plug it into a 220 [volt] outlet. It’s my TV and I can do whatever I want to with it, but I’m going to blow that TV to smithereens if I put it in a 220 outlet! The manufacturer made it; he knows how it operates best. The Bible is God’s instruction manual for us.”
Other notable antigay figures who’ve used the network as a platform to promote bigotry include Kirk Cameron and Rick Santorum.