David Letterman’s Apology

The following video is from The Late Show with David Letterman.  This is a follow up to Letterman’s earlier disclosure that he had sexual relationships with women working for him.  This clip is an apology by Letterman to his staff and to his wife.  My comments are below the video box.

David Letterman did not owe the public an apology for his actions.  His apology became public because of the threat of extortion.  Repentance before God should be the course he takes.  He does apologize to his wife on the air as well as to the staff for putting them in the situation in which they were being quizzed by reporters and others.

Letterman speaks of being a victim of the extortionist.  He does seem to acknowledge that his own behavior made this possible.  We all know what it is like to not want our sins to be exposed publicly.  At the same time, we must remember that it is our sinfulness that allows for the possibility of exposure.  Sin does have its consequences.

Letterman called his motivation a tower of Lutheran, Midwestern guilt.  Guilt is a good thing if it drives us to acknowledge our sin before God and repent of it.

I do find it hard to believe that it did not occur to Letterman that his staff would face questions.  He genuinely seemed puzzled by this.  How does a guy who skewers others for a living not realize that others might do the same to his staff?

He does speak of trying to fix things with his wife, who was obviously hurt by these revelations.  “Let me tell you, I have my work cut out for me.”  Let’s hope that he does get it fixed.

Letterman identified the other option of not fixing things and that is to “fall short.”  There is a good biblical phrase.

For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God

–Romans 3:23

Falling short is why we need the great exchange.  By faith, we are counted righteous because Jesus was condemned for our sin.

For another helpful article on this subject, check out Russell Moore’s What David Letterman Can Teach Us About the Gospel.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • Ben

    MediaCurves.com recently conducted a study comparing viewers’ ratings of David Letterman’s sex scandal confession and his apology to Sarah Palin last June. Results found that that viewers perceived Letterman’s recent confession as more sincere than his apology to Palin. Letterman scored higher on likeability, believability and sincerity scales when viewers rated his recent confession, compared to his apology to Sarah Palin in June More in depth results can be seen at:
    http://www.mediacurves.com/Entertainment/J7581b-Letterman/Index.cfm
    Thanks,
    Ben