Dec 012017
 

Julie Anne Smith released an excellent report last night on the Ravi Zacharias scandal.

We know now that there are good reasons to believe the allegations that he has used false credentials and had an “inappropriate” relationship online with a woman other than his wife.

 

 

Now, I confess that I have never listened to Ravi Zacharias for more than a couple of minutes and I have never read any of his books.

I have no idea what or if he has contributed to the kingdom of God.

I do know that the evidence strongly suggests that he shouldn’t be representing Christ or Christians to the secular world at this time.

His organization says that they will answer all these allegations, but they said that quite a few days ago.

Experience tells me that they are doing what other groups caught in scandal have done of late, which is to let the news cycle pass them by and and find redemption in the short attention spans of the public.

What if, however, he actually told the truth and repented?

What if he admitted he falsified his credentials and confessed his moral failure?

What if he agreed that his academic record would be corrected in his public record and writings and agreed to spend the next couple of years in therapy away from the public?

What if he publicly apologized to the woman (or women) he manipulated for his own pleasure?

What would we do with Ravi then?

I would consider him worthy of Christian forgiveness and restoration as his repentance would speak louder about his apologetic then any of his books or speeches.

Now, if you think any of that will actually happen, you probably think you’re going to get rich from the email that nice man sent you from Nigeria.

What will actually happen is that his organization will say as little as possible and blame some combination of atheists, liberals, the devil, Democrats, and bloggers for maligning him.

Christians, (who love their celebrities) will embrace those explanations and heap scorn those so named.

He’ll have to scale back a bit for a while, then it will be as if he’s never sinned.

Julie Anne will be called everything but holy.

The church in America will once again demonstrate its priorities.

We will once again demonstrate why we must rely on political power instead of the power of the Holy Spirit.

I hope I’m wrong.

I’m probably not.

 

  29 Responses to “What To Do With Ravi”

  1. The pattern your document in certainly accurate. No question. However, IMHO, of the Christian celebrities I can think of that seem to have the potential and humility to do the right thing, Ravi is on that short list.

  2. The sex case against him looks very fishy.

    I’m sure he’s been inflating his academic credentials though. Unfortunately, that is a church staple.

  3. Josh,

    It’s my understanding that it was an online affair and explicit pictures were sent.

    In any case, it’s something that was wrong.

    We’ll see what the reaction will be…I don’t share Corby’s confidence.

  4. I am confused why this is even an issue here. Just the other day on Things I Think was this;

    “8. All these scandals should serve to remind us of our own depravity…but it’s more fun to deal with the depravity of others… ”

    Are we delighting in the 2nd phrase of that thought?

  5. If you read the court documents, his defense looks very believable. He claims the couple tried to entrap and blackmail him.

  6. Should also say, I’ve never read or listened to Ravi, only that his lawsuit looked legit.

  7. MLD,

    The same thing is at stake here that is always at stake.

    The refusal to openly repent.

    If we keep taking the fundamental mechanism for forgiveness off the table, how can we claim to be Christian?

  8. But aren’t you (the plural ya’ll) actually focusing on Ravi’s sin INSTEAD of his sin making you mourn over your own — which I took as the premise of your Things I Think.

  9. MLD,

    What I’m focusing on here at home and here online are two different things.

    Both are doable at the same time.

    I’m helping raise a teenager…my sins are ever before me. 🙂

  10. That’s a biased report. Read the two documents linked at the bottom. Ravi claims they came after him to extort money, and that seems quite likely, considering their letter saying that he could either inform his board, or pay them $5 million.

  11. I don’t think it’s biased at all.

    I will say that the couple is real close to the extortion line…but they obviously had the documentation needed to extort.

  12. Man, that’s a rough way to judge right and wrong. They extorted him, so they must have had something on him? Wow.

  13. Josh,

    We’ve now seen the emails that confirm the online affair.

    Julie Anne published them.

    That doesn’t mean extortion is right or that Zacharias is innocent.
    It just means that there is enough wrong to go around.

  14. Michael, that is a very edited communication, that even then doesn’t admit to an online affair.

    It gives the woman story, which seems very suspicious, but nor Ravi’s.

  15. Josh,

    Are you saying you think there’s a rational explanation for his email to do himself in if the husband were told?

  16. No, assuming that is true. That is incomplete communication. Who knows what has been edited.

  17. I believe the victim and believe Ravi has been caught. He should step down and confess if this is indeed true. If not true, he should fight to clear his name. With that said, there is another sin here that is not being talked about and that is one of gossip. The gossip may be true but its still gossip. There something that makes me feel very uneasy that private email communications are being exposed to the world that were never meant for us to read. In my own depravity I seem to enjoy reading this but is it right? I seem to enjoy this stuff being exposed. Forgive me for that Ravi.

  18. Always we need to separate the man from the message and the Church doesn’t seem to be any better at doing that than is the rest of the world… or so it seems to me

  19. ML D makes a good observation – IMO today – it does look a little strange to see a whole flock pointing their fingers at the messenger for doing what we let slide by in the flock, itself … not excusing wrong behavior in leadership, just pondering our selectivity

  20. Michael @ 3 – I didn’t say I was confident, I just said I thought he had more potential than the average person we’ve seen in these situations. I’m not saying I believe he will. I’m saying on a scale of “likely to” he’s on the higher end.

  21. I think what wears many Christians out is the dissonance created by all these evangelical theologians of glory. Week after week, book after book, they preach sanctification and victorious Christian living (it’s well represented even here), but while they line their pockets, even they can’t produce their sanctification.

    When are their followers going to say enough is enough, not only to them but to their theology.

    Let the one who thinks he stands take heed….

  22. em, I don’t think that was my point.

  23. No, MLD… I wasn’t restating your point… should have been more clear that your observation led me to thinking – it occurs to me that our fallen-so-called leaders distract us from our own business of personal accountability … we make it so easy for the devil to distract us… or so it seems to me … dunno, tho, do i? 😁

  24. To Jean’s point @22 – the worst book of the 20th century for evangelicals – and the one they liked the most was Alan Redpath’s Victorious Christian Living —- as if there is such a thing outside of daily repentance.

  25. If repentance and confession will cost a business millions of dollars will there be confession and repentance? Why does Ravi need DeMoss PR and the lawyers if he has his heart and his Lord?

  26. It’s only been in the last week there has been a lot of talk about his misrepresentation of academic accomplishments, even though it has been happening for years. And now this other news. What is the connection between them, that they both come up around the same time?

  27. Eric, I was wondering the same?

  28. The reason all of this is coming up now is the lawsuit. Steve Baughman publicized the lawsuit and the falsified academic credentials. I happened to have been sitting on the “June” story (I’ve known about it since Jan. 2017) and as the lawsuit became more focus, I started releasing more info on what I know. There’s so much more.

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