Franklin Graham slammed "media elites" for knowing about the sexual exploits of disgraced "Today Show" host Matt Lauer -- but pretending to be shocked and outraged when such behavior came to light.
In a recent Facebook post, the leader of Samaritan's Purse linked to a Fox News article detailing how, in 2008, Lauer's inappropriate behavior was exposed during a "roast" event where he was the subject of his NBC colleagues' jokes.
"They all knew?? Media elites tried to act so shocked when Matt Lauer's behavior was revealed to the public, but now we find out that they knew about it for years-and joked about it," Graham wrote. "Lauer's sexual exploits brought roars of laughter at a highly secretive 2008 roast where the content was so obscene recordings were banned. Well, almost ten years later, the secret is out."
He added, "Their vulgar discourse tells us a lot about them-and these are people that we have allowed into our living rooms via television!"
NBC News fired the twice-married Lauer last week for inappropriate sexual behavior. As more disturbing information emerged, NBC News' top bosses Andy Lack and his deputy, Noah Oppenheim, claimed they had no prior knowledge of Lauer's conduct.
However, according to the Fox News article, Lauer's exploits were no secret. The 2008 Friars Club roast took place at the New York Hilton and was attended by a slew of celebrities and media executives, including Brian Williams, Diane Sawyer, Nancy O'Dell and Howard Stern.
Throughout the night, roasters - including then "Today" co-host Meredith Vieira - made crude jokes about Lauer's infidelity, in-office sexcapades, and degrading treatment of women.
"This was a comedic roast, but there was clearly a vein of truth running through all those jokes," said a media executive who was in attendance. "You had Katie Couric, Meredith Vieira and Jeff Zucker all standing up there joking about his sex in the office, his kinkiness. They all knew."
NBC's Joe Scarborough, who attended the roast, said on "Morning Joe" last week that he left because he felt uncomfortable.
"The whole theme was that he does the show and then he has sex with people, with employees," Scarborough said. "So was this whispered behind closed doors? No. It was shouted from the mountaintops and everybody laughed about it."
Closing his statements, Graham contended that the Fox News report is a "good reminder" that what you say or do "in private" isn't going to remain private forever.
"The Bible says, 'For there is nothing hidden that will not be disclosed, and nothing concealed that will not be known or brought out into the open,'" he said. "God sees and knows all. He even knows our thoughts. And He is the only One who can clean up and clean out broken lives, dirty and stained with sin."
Earlier, Graham said the firing of the longtime "Today Show" anchor is a "warning to all of us to examine our lives."
"What we're seeing in the recent string of what is termed 'misconduct' really boils down to a morality issue-people failing to follow God's standards, and that is called sin," he contended. "The Bible tells us, '...be sure your sin will find you out.' This is a warning to all of us to examine our lives."
The evangelist emphasized that the commandment doesn't just apply to movie stars, media personalities, and politicians, but to everyone.
"One sin leads to others and can have a great impact on our own lives and the lives of those around us," he said. "Sin has devastating consequences-here on earth, and for eternity. But God is anxious for us to come to Him in repentance and ask for His forgiveness and help. True healing comes through trusting Jesus Christ in faith and following Him as the Lord of our lives."