Christian apologist and popular author Ravi Zacharias has for the first time released a statement that addressed sexting allegations involving a married woman as well as accusations that he had fooled his supporters with false credentials.
Zacharias and his Ravi Zacharias International Ministries have finally issued their respective statements on the lawsuit that the Christian apologist filed against a married Canadian woman who previously sent him nude photos. In his personal statement, the popular speaker and author expressed regret for failing to protect himself from this scandal, Christianity Today detailed.
"I have learned a difficult and painful lesson through this ordeal. ... I failed to exercise wise caution and to protect myself from even the appearance of impropriety, and for that I am profoundly sorry," said Zacharias. "I have acknowledged this to my Lord, my wife, my children, our ministry board, and my colleagues."
According to Zacharias, the Canadian woman and her husband had tried to extort him out of $5 million using her "unwanted" text messages and photos sent in 2016. The couple, on the other hand, claimed that the author had taken advantage of the woman's vulnerability and his spiritual authority over her. The lawsuit was dropped by the speaker on Nov. 9 after the couple reportedly chose to settle instead of taking the matter to court.
RZIM also addressed accusations that Zacharias reportedly inflated his academic background and used the title of "doctor" even though he only had honorary degrees and not a doctoral degree. The ministry explained that the title was acceptable with honorary doctorates, but they had recently stopped using it because "this practice can be contentious in certain circles."
Meanwhile, Patheos blogger Warren Throckmorton did not seem satisfied with the statements that Zacharias and RZIM released that tackled the sexting and credential inflation issues. He acknowledged that while others may be placated by the explanations, for him, there was still something wrong with the statements.
Throckmorton alleged that RZIM had been "covering up" the earlier references to Zacharias as "Dr." He also said some of his sources claimed the Christian apologist was being investigated over the issue and was reportedly being subjected to disciplinary action.