Thursday, January 7, 2016

On Discerning Ravi Zacharias: It's time to say what needs to be said

Ravi Zacharias is an Indian born,  Canadian-American Christian whose ministry is apologetics. Zacharias speaks at large gatherings, conferences, and events on the topics of Christianity and defending the faith. He also has a radio program, "Let My People Think." He is well known for being intelligent, philosophical, and an excellent speaker in his command of the English language.

Even though there are some towering men of the faith, we must continue to do our duty and test all things against scripture. No one is immune from potential apostasy, error, or sin. Let us examine Mr Zacharias.

Ravi Zacharias talks to pastor Joe Coffey at Christ
Community Chapel about answering objections to Christianity.
Source TMDrew, CC

The link below brings you to an essay written in 2008. Since that time Ravi has descended further into questionable associations. At one point he praised Catholic Mystic Henry Nouwen, in addition to compromising on Mormon theology as you will read in the link below of that and other compromises

Ravi's slide downward

Though Ravi later retracted his endorsement of Nouwen and Merton here

But let's take a look at his activity and statements over time, and compare to scripture.

2009: Ravi signed the ecumenical document called the Manhattan Declaration which calls for Catholics and Protestants to partner on moral issues (source). This is a violation of 2 Corinthians 6:14 and Ephesians 5:11.

2012: Ravi appears on Joyce Meyer Today, and says to Meyer, "God has used you" and calls her a 'great bible teacher' (youtube clip). This is a violation of one of the qualifications of elders, that they protect the sheep and remain in sound doctrine according to the biblical qualifications of teaching elders as per 1 Timothy 3:1-7 and Titus 1:5-9. His endorsement of Meyer was also a violation of the advice on Proverbs which says leaders use their wisdom to guide and lead. (Prov. 11:14; 24:6).

Ravi Zacharias calls false teacher Joyce Meyer a great teacher?

2014: Ravi waffles on age of earth, Ken Ham has response. This denies the clear and straightforward text of Genesis and is a setting aside of Romans 15:4.

2015: Credible allegations were made that Ravi has allegedly inflated/exaggerated/misrepresented his scholarly credentials. Proverbs 19:9 says he who breathes out lies will perish. When the allegations surfaced, certain information was immediately removed from the Ravi Zacharias International Ministries (RZIM) website. The allegations claimed,

-He was not a visiting scholar at Cambridge.
-He refers to himself as Dr Zacharias yet has no earned doctoral degree, they are all conferred.
-He claims to have lectured at the world's most prestigious universities.
-He claims to be a scholar yet has published nothing in scholarly journals and does not have peer reviewed research.

Next, sadly, from the RZIM FAQ page,
Ravi Zacharias Ministry holds no official theological position on:

Creation: "RZIM does not have an official ministry position on the age of the earth. The focus of RZIM is apologetics and evangelism, and thus we do not address particular questions about creation..."

Calvinism v. Arminianism: "RZIM does not have an official ministry position on the doctrines of Calvinism or Arminianism, and we have staff members holding to a variety of views in both of these doctrinal traditions." (PS you'll notice errors in their explanation of Calvinism on the linked page)

Eschatology: "Dr. Zacharias has not spoken on matters relating to the end times, nor does RZIM endorse any official view on matters of eschatology."

Catholicism: "RZIM does not have an official ministry position on the doctrines of the Catholic tradition; RZIM focuses its ministry on evangelism and apologetics and strives to stay true to that vision. Some of Ravi Zacharias's favorite authors are Catholic (namely G.K. Chesterton and Malcolm Muggeridge), yet he recognizes that there are significant doctrinal differences between Protestants and Catholics." [doctrinal differences?!?!]

Erm, kind of hard to engage in solid apologetics without an official position on 3/4 of the bible's doctrines.

2016: In April 2015, Ravi Zacharias was part of a conference which was set to scrutinize The New Apostolic Reformation, during the Worldview Apologetics Conference held at Antioch Bible Church in Redmond. The co-authors of two books outing the NAR (R. Douglas Gievett, professor of philosophy in the Talbot School of Theology at Biola University, and Holly Pivec, journalist) wrote the following at their blog:
My co-author, Doug Geivett, will speak alongside other high-profile evangelicals–including Ravi Zacharias, Norman Geisler, and Calvin Beisner–who will present on other important topics. Doug will give two presentations on the NAR, titled “The New Apostolic Reformation: What You Need to Know” and “God’s Super-Apostles: Where They Fall Short.” 
And yet in January 2016 Ravi will partner with Domininist/NAR teachers at a conference called Synergize, the very movement a previous conference which Ravi attended that had sessions exposing these people as false teachers.

Finally, the smooth talk. If you listen to enough of Zacharias you notice he uses mostly rhetorical contrivances, philosophy, and looong anecdotes but not a whole lot of Bible. He is an ecumenical philosopher, not a solid apologist. The reason he uses fine sounding arguments and rhetorical tricks is that he is the kind of man Paul is describing being the opposite of himself, in 1 Corinthians 2:4-5,

and my message and my preaching were not in persuasive words of wisdom, (like Ravi) but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, 5so that your faith would not rest on the wisdom of men, (Ravi again) but on the power of God. (as Paul does).

Now, I mentioned before that immediately after salvation and before I got into a church I listened to Joel Osteen every week and I loved it. I used to take notes on Osteen's speech from a rhetorician's point of view, noting the tone, cadence, speed, and specific language used to hold the audience in his hand. He is a wonderful speaker. I stopped thinking it was so wonderful when I finally got a clue and opened my bible and compared what Osteen was teaching to the Word. Then the scales fell off.

I also personally attended a Ravi Zacharias speech in Athens GA soon after I was converted and I loved that too. Why? Same reason I initially liked Osteen. I have a particular affinity for men who can speak eloquently. I have always loved language, rhetoric, persuasion, metaphor...both my undergraduate and graduate degree are in literacy. When a smooth talking man comes along who uses language so well, it bamboozles me and I get starry eyed for the language, not the ideas behind the language. I was a Romans 16:18 gal.

I tell you this so that no one may deceive you by fine-sounding arguments. (Colossians 2:4)

What does everyone say when they mention Ravi Zacharias? "The Spirit is powerfully using Ravi!" No, but they do say, "Ravi's so smart!" What would people say if they had heard Paul preach, who is just as smart as Ravi if not smarter? "Paul's so smart!" or would they say, "Paul preaches in the power of the Spirit of God!" They would say the latter, and they did (1 Corinthians 2:4).

THINK about it.


---------------------------

FMI on the New Apostolic Reformation here



47 comments :

  1. 2 Corinthians 11:3-6 says, "But I am afraid that as the serpent deceived Eve by his cunning, your thoughts will be led astray from a sincere and pure devotion to Christ. For if someone comes and proclaims another Jesus than the one we proclaimed, or if you receive a different spirit from the one you received, or if you accept a different gospel from the one you accepted, you put up with it readily enough. Indeed, I consider that I am not in the least inferior to these super-apostles. Even if I am unskilled in speaking, I am not so in knowledge; indeed, in every way we have made this plain to you in all things." I have heard people criticize Eve for falling for the serpent's lies, as if it would have been them in the garden they would have not partaken of the forbidden fruit. But so many of us fall for the subtle erroneous teaching of many popular Christian preachers, teachers, and speakers.

    Viewing the world through the eyes of discernment is challenging because so much of what is popular is not scripturally sound. Pointing this out to fellow believers rarely brings a positive response; rather, they defend the false teacher and consider the discerning person to be negative, critical, judgmental, or even crazy. It's taken me awhile but I would rather be right with God than right with the world!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Linda,

      Thanks so much for a good word. I agree. Its easy for me to sit here and metaphorically 'yell' at Eve and say "Don't do it ya silly woman!' but I've done silly things as I mentioned, like follow Joel Osteen or enjoy Ravi live or on his radio show before the discernment kicked in. Thank you for your mini-testimony! I agree, we have an audience of One, and what we day or do for and IN Jesus is the only thing that matters.

      Delete
    2. I'm with you, Linda. Discernment can be a lonely place, but better there in the truth, than in deception with the popular crowd.

      Delete
  2. Your testimony is the strength of the article. Thank you also for your collection of the details in one place. One can hope he's not a heretic, but he's not a trustworthy teacher. Personally, I liked his philosophy but the fact that he majors on anecdotes and utilizes literally no Scripture references in his talks at all is part of why I moved away from him and toward other speakers (which was actually Mark Driscoll's youtube clips (which actually taught theology, but see my article on him http://singlechristian1.blogspot.com/2014/09/tim-challies-explains-my-own-thoughts.html )) before becoming a fan of Wretched and John MacArthur)

    You're a rarity in the visible Church, Elizabeth, that you're a 1) blogger who's 2) doctrinally sound and 3) has a large internet influence. I am quietly excited to see to what position God will exalt you to in the New Jerusalem/eternity. :) Thanks for keeping the faith.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Hakam! You're very kind to say that. I pray the Lord is glorified.

      Delete
  3. Thank you for all the work you have put in. The article saddens me, but no one man is sacred except for Christ himself. This warning you have given is necessary.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Anonymous, it saddens me too. I hope his drift will be corrected.

      Delete
  4. For some reason, it wont let me post under my registered name of "Gates Collins" so Anonymous will have to do until I can figure out why.

    Ravi Zacharias has been a source of contention for quite a few years now. And I'm glad to see Elizabeth post his questionable status as a born again believer.

    Ravi is an example of someone who is more difficult to expose than someone like Kenneth Copeland, Beth Moore, Benny Hinn or even Joel Osteen. His teachings seem to be more in line with Scripture than the very weak attempts made by other heretics. As a result, our level of discernment is tested to a much higher level. Spurgeon said it best:

    "Discernment is not knowing the difference between right and wrong. It is knowing the difference between right and almost right.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Gates,

      I always love that quote from Spurgeon. Thanks so much for the compliment and also for understanding it's harder to expose the soft false teachings rather than the outlandish ones. I'm not questioning Ravi's salvation though. Just the teaching.

      Delete
  5. So because you are a Calvinist, Elizabeth, does it bother you that there are errors in their explanation of Calvinism?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Because I am a Christian, it bothers me that there are errors in his explanation of Catholicism, Mormonism, and the literal truth of the Bible. As an apologist, it bothers me that he claims to be an apologist (which is a person who defends and explains the Christian faith) but refuses to put a line of demarcation around the faith he pretends to defend. THOSE are errors that are harder to explain, given his lifetime of making a living speaking for Jesus

      Delete
  6. Thank you so much for your helpful post. I've had some serious doubts about him for awhile now. This gives me some facts to back up my suspicions.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Thank you for your comments about 'Dr.' Zacharias and his ongoing compromises against 'Biblical CHRISTianity'. I used to listen to his program 'Let My People Think' faithfully until I started wondering about him - then read another CHRISTian Ministries exposure of his false teaching.
    It is my Biblical understanding that 'Dr.' Zacharias does indeed prove that intelligent and popular false teaching and "false teachers" are often very difficult to spot - and that they are much more destructive than most people realize - and their false teachings are becoming much more common and increasingly "subtil" - which means that 'Biblical CHRISTians' must be evermore on our guard in these increasingly 'spiritually dark' end times that we are living in RIGHT NOW
    – It is my Biblical understanding that we are definitely now at the point where every pastor/teacher/ministry should be closely inspected - as we are told to do in 2 Timothy 2:15 and Acts 17:11
    – for that which happened before the first coming of "the Lord Jesus Christ" - the denial and mis-undersanding by most of 'the religious crowd' - is happening yet again - this time it is occurring before the appearing 'in the air' of "the Lord Jesus Christ" for the 'pre-tribulation Rapture' for His true "church".
    – thus, my strong personal recommendation unto ALL of those who truly are “born again” 'by Grace alone through Faith alone' believers and followers of “our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ” must ALL learn – and remember – and most seriously think about – and apply that which C. H. Spurgeon wrote over 100 years ago -
    - DISCERNMENT is not knowing the difference between right and wrong.
    It is knowing the difference between RIGHT
    - and ALMOST right.

    How many there are in these end times of exponentially increasing 'spiritual delusions - and deceptions - and deliberate deceit - and confusion - and darkness' that Biblically are not actually shepherds - but are 'hirelings':
    [13] For such are false apostles, deceitful workers,
    transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ.
    [14] And no marvel;
    for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.
    [15] Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness;
    whose end shall be according to their works.
    (2 Corinthians, Chapter 11 ~ KJB)

    Please read the article by 'William Dell on 'False Prophets' written in 1666' - 'The Trial Of Spirits - Both In Teachers And Hearers'
    Apologetics Coordination Team (ACT) @ http://www.deceptioninthechurch.com/thetrialofspirits.html
    .

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Bro. Nicholas,

      Thanks for the comment and also for the verse. I have not found in Zacharias specific false teachings. Would you share your examples of where he varies from the Bible? I have found character issues (the padded resume and exaggerated credentials) and also sins of omission (refusing to declare what needs to be declared). Sins of omission are still sins. But as for false teachings, what have you discovered?

      Delete
  8. Packs a powerful wallop to read the details of Ravi’s decline from the preaching of the gospel and defense of the faith in its fullness. Thank you for making this information available, and bless you in your further ministry in the service of our Savior, God and King , Jesus Christ the Lord ~~~ ><†>

    ReplyDelete
  9. This article shares some important information to know about Ravi. And I have concerns about him due to something else that was not mentioned in the article, that he deliberately did not speak the name of Jesus at a Presidential prayer breakfast.

    Something important this article does not do, though: Explain if he's teaching anything false. I think it can be implied by that that the author does not consider Ravi to be teaching any falsehood.

    Thus even with my concerns I still enjoy listening to Ravi on the radio, when I happen to tune in. I don't go looking for him but if I happen to catch him, great. I was listening today, in fact.

    So I do have concerns about him and don't recommend him. But I enjoy him when I do happen to catch him.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi SloBro,

      Thanks for your comment and for reading the piece. You're right, and pretty astute to notice I didn't discuss his doctrine.

      There are two benchmarks to determine if a teacher is false or not (or sliding toward false. One is a moral benchmark. They must be above reproach. 1 Tim 3:2. Lying/exaggerating one's credentials would seem to me to be a moral failure bringing one below reproach.

      The second is doctrine. Looking at someone's doctrine has two parts
      1. What they teach
      2. What they don't teach

      an omission is a lot harder to spot than spotting something false they said. AN example of the Great Omitter is Joel Osteen, who has repeatedly said that he 'isn't called' to preach on sin, death, wrath. But that is wrong, that's half the Good News! It's the bad news that makes the Good News such a blessing. In the Garden, the serpent told Eve and Adam *half* the truth, and twisted the rest. Either one (and both) is sin.

      I'd posted Ravi's doctrinal stance and also referred to his kerfuffle over the Mormon issue. Ravi is an apologist, yet refuses to put a line of demarcation around the biblically declared truth. Mormons aren't Christians. Catholics aren't Christians. He doesn't teach the FULL truth and refuses to do so when asked.

      In addition, the earth-age problem he won't address is a significant one. Eve and Adam disobeyed the simple, clear word of God and that was a great sin. In Genesis 1 we read "And God created...And God said". Ravi rebels against the clear word of God when he said the age of the earth is a secondary issue. It's not the age of the earth that is the problem, it is refusing to entertain the FIRST THING GOD revealed about Himself in the Bible that is the problem. In this way Ravi sins, AND he sets a terrible precedent for seekers, students, and the weak. Putting a stumbling block up is sin. Romans 14:13

      "I won't teach Genesis 1, the doctrines of grace, won't tell a Mormon he is bound for hell, won't tell a Catholic he is bound for hell, refuse to speak about the sovereignty of God in the Doctrines of Grace, and forget all prophecy, that doesn't matter. But I'm an apologist speaking the truth Jesus gave us. Really. Really I am."

      "So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin". James 4:17

      His refusal on all those doctrines is just as bad an omission as Joel Osteen's teaching!

      You can't make a living saying you declare the truth of the Bible and omit half of it. It's not about what he does teach, but about what He doesn't.

      Delete
    2. I'm not so convinced about arguments from silence; there could be valid explanations for those. However, I hadn't noticed the the lying/exaggerating of credentials the first time I read this until you pointed it out just now. That is most damning and disturbing. Sad to see how they fall. May he repent.

      Given that neither of us really find anything wrong with what he actually does teach I will still behave as I did before: Not really seeking out his teaching, but if I so happen to hear him on the radio while spinning the knob I'll stop, listen, and enjoy fine oration of the gospel of Christ. But I won't recommend him to others, and now I know how to pray for him whenever I do hear him.

      Delete
    3. I'm convinced that there is never a good reason to purposely omit the full counsel of God from one's teaching. If God's Spirit breathed it, it is profitable-

      All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, 2 Tim 3:16

      for I did not shrink from declaring to you the whole counsel of God. Acts 20:27.

      Delete
  10. http://www.churchleaders.com/pastors/videos-for-pastors/171885-ravi-zacharias-who-is-not-fit-to-lead.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for the YouTube link - which - in my opinion - should be re-labeled.
      This video - with a number of favorable comments can also be viewed @ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rLEh6sDg-oA&index=31&list=PL1fMzC_oxcaWWLkt7NGHzNyVX_jLykfuH

      To me 'Dr.' Zacharias shows absolutely the need for Praying unto "the only wise God" for His continuous Biblical Spiritual Discernment in these days of exponentially increasing 'spiritual delusions, deceptions, deliberate deceits, and confusion' - for 'Dr' Zacharias shows that the more well known, educated, and well spoken the "false teachers" are - the more difficult that they are to spot - and they are so much more destructive than most people realize, and their false teachings are becoming much more frequent - and "subtil" - which means that we must constantly be on guard against in these increasingly 'spiritually dark' 'end times' that we are living in - RIGHT NOW

      Again - as we are WARNED in "the word of the Lord" in 2 Corinthians, Chapter 11 [KJV]:
      [13] For such are false apostles, deceitful workers,
      transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ.
      [14] And no marvel;
      for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.
      [15] Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness;
      whose end shall be according to their works.
      .

      Delete
    2. Hi Marsha, the video http://www.churchleaders.com/pastors/videos-for-pastors/171885-ravi-zacharias-who-is-not-fit-to-lead.html

      indeed is misleading in its title. It depicts Zacharias in a 3-min clip describing leaders in general who are unfit for leadership.

      Delete
  11. Hi Marsha,

    The title of this page is unfortunate, it can be read in two ways. Here in this 3-min clip, Ravi is speaking of what kind of leader is not fit to lead and what kind of leader IS fit to lead. He makes three main points, and they are all from a verse and he fleshes them out in an explanation.

    ReplyDelete
  12. I had a debate with some Christians several months ago about Ravi Zachariah and I could not find a good source to point to them. I got your email and I sent it to that person. I pray they receive the warning. Ty so much for this article. We are truly in the end times and Jesus said there will be a great falling away. People will be deceived and deceiving others. I do not see how people preach about a revival and as bethel teaches that you will become God like. Bethel and ihop are in apostasy as well. Time is short, Jesus is coming, rely only on him and his word, for he is the word, the way, and the truth, he is our preacher and teacher. People need to stop idolizing men and repent!! Man will always fail you but turn to the one who will never fail you, which is Jesus Christ. Blessings to you sisters! Let us love each other more and more as we see the day drawing near!!!!!

    ReplyDelete
  13. A little leaven …OR another way to put it, a drop of poison in a glass of water is enough to kill you!
    (Matthew 16) ESV

    The Leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees

    5When the disciples reached the other side, they had forgotten to bring any bread. 6Jesus said to them,“Watch and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees.” 7And they began discussing it among themselves, saying, “We brought no bread.” 8But Jesus, aware of this, said, “O you of little faith, why are you discussing among yourselves the fact that you have no bread? 9Do you not yet perceive? Do you not remember the five loaves for the five thousand, and how many baskets you gathered? 10Or the seven loaves for the four thousand, and how many baskets you gathered? 11How is it that you fail to understand that I did not speak about bread? Beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees.” 12Then they understood that he did not tell them to beware of the leaven of bread, but of the teaching of the Pharisees and Sadducees.

    Beware not to drift from the truth
    Hebrews Chapter 2 ESV
    1Therefore we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard, lest we drift away from it. (Speaking of salvation and NOT drifting away from the TRUTH)

    * MY THOUGHTS (Brother Rick/Metro Atlanta)*

    The evidence of a vast defection taking place within the visible professing Church in the last handful of years especially, and which continues to escalate is all the more reason for each genuine Christian (saint) to be on high alert! Our most pressing need as the chosen saints of God is Biblical truth - in which can be known through daily time in God’s Word the Bible! Moreover, God has given us men (pastors and still others), and woman (in their proper places) that are gifted in the exposition of His Word, in which we would do well to listen to regularity! Surely fervent prayer is a necessity as well!

    It is an understatement to say that we are now experiencing an all out attack and the early stages of what is yet to come! How in the world do you think for a moment that big named Christian leaders in whom we THOUGHT were sound in yesteryears, but now are moving more and more into many compromising areas, got to the place that they are now in? I believe that one reason that many get sucked into the vacuum of fatal deception is through the very small and subtle crafty traps by the demonic. It is incrimination, like fishing, thus slowly reeling in the catch! There must also be NO compromise of ANY Biblical TRUTH!

    A VERY important consideration in determining who is friend and who is foe is not only what they say (or preach and teach), but also who it is that they share platforms with, and their associations, endorsements, their affirmative quotes of other frauds, etc.!

    We too can be easily swayed off course IF we fail to get, and to stay, on high alert (and ALL that this means)! Critical point: God is the one, and He is the ONLY one who keeps us His redeemed, now and forever! This said, we too must come up along side of our great God by adhering to His mandates to us, thus, validating our persevering disposition - this is the doctrine of the “persevering of the saints”, a twin truth as John MacArthur would call it!

    Can a true saint get caught up into deception! Yes! But God shall bring His own out of it sooner, rather than later! How far will these “MANY” go into the ecumenical, mystical, new age lies of “doctrines of devils and demons” we really don’t know. The fact is that these “Many” are on the road to apostasy. How many will reach the point of no return on the road to full blown apostasy time will tell (See Matthew Chpt.7 on the “MANY“).

    My words of wisdom is not only the above, but also, DO NOT SUBJECT yourself to anyone that is questionable lest you end up seduced (take heed lest you fall…have the attitude of the Beatitudes)!

    Brother Rick Buffington
    Metro Atlanta
    PS, Thank you ALWAYS sister Elizabeth for your faithful service in TRUTH, and for our Lord Jesus Christ : > )

    ReplyDelete
  14. Elizabeth you wrote further up in the comment section:

    ""I won't teach Genesis 1, the doctrines of grace, won't tell a Mormon he is bound for hell, won't tell a Catholic he is bound for hell, refuse to speak about the sovereignty of God in the Doctrines of Grace, and forget all prophecy, that doesn't matter. But I'm an apologist speaking the truth Jesus gave us. Really. Really I am."

    So because he refuses to teach Calvinism he is more false?? In all other points you wrote I agree. But yet you are basically nonchalantly saying that if someone does not teach the doctrines of grace aka Calvinism then they are a false teacher, correct?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dear Anonymous,

      Thank you for asking a clarification question. The problem is not as you stated, so the answer to your question would be "incorrect".

      The argument between Arminians and Calvinists is one that includes biblical doctrines of: the sovereignty of God, the ability to resist the Holy Spirit or not, perseverance of the saints, who initiates salvation, limited atonement, and our sin-nature. NOT having a position on any of these either way, which are raised in the Bible, violates being "ready to answer everyone who asks you to explain about the hope you have." 1 Peter 3:15 and also smacks of pragmatism.

      Delete
  15. I used to listen to Ravi Zacharias every day. The more he spoke, the more he revealed his false understanding.

    It never ceases to amaze me when guys like Billy Graham, Walter Martin, Rick Warren, etc. express themselves as being knowledgeable in certain biblical concepts while at the same time revealing themselves to be completely blind regarding those same biblical truths.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Ravi is an apologist trying to reach the lost also by speaking their language. Ravi's messages are not for the church, they are for the lost, and mainly for the lost intellectuals. Does he seem a bit ecumenical? Yes, but that might be necessary to gain access to the people he is trying to reach with the Gospel. I seem to remember the Apostle Paul used similar strategies becoming "all things to all people"... Dear brothers and sisters in Christian, stop listening to Ravi and start praying for him and his ministry.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Ravi cannot "reach the lost" by giving them a false message. It is the gospel that is the power of God according to Romans 1:16-17. Man's wisdom is just that, man's wisdom and does not have the power to convert a soul. Ravi is heard on Christian radio stations, so if his messages are not for the church then who is listening to him? Do you honestly believe that lost intellectuals are listening to Ravi on Christian radio? It is Christians who are supporting Ravi's ministry through their financial gifts. Or do you believe that Ravi's ministry is being supported by lost intellectuals?! (isn't that an oxymoron? see Psalm 14:1) We have every right to call out to warn one another if a public teacher/preacher is not teaching what is in line with scripture.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Nevermind.. I found the author, by finally getting to the extreme bottom of this...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Charles, at the extreme top of this is a tab clearly marked "About this Blog" where the reason for the blog, the author's name, email, and the doctrinal positions I hold are clearly marked and stated. If you have other questions you can always email me. If you have a concern about anything written here you can either comment or email them to me directly.

      Delete
  19. Everything you've stated is true about Ravi Zacharias, from his academic posturing to his yoking with false teachers. Ravi is a dangerous man, and that becomes evident when his worshippers come to his defense. They care nothing for the truth and they defend Ravi's right to lie about his credentials and compromise himself with false teachers. He has been lifted up as an idol.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Indeed Ravi Zacharias is one of an increasing number of Biblically Prophesied "false teachers".
      He is personally articulate, and charming, and an accepted 'academic' - But it is my understanding that he is totally unrepentant of his Biblically false teachingS.

      Those who truly are 'Biblical CHRISTians' are WARNED:
      "This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.
      For men shall be lovers of their own selves,
      covetous,
      boasters, proud,
      blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,
      Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce,
      despisers of those that are good,
      Traitors, heady,
      highminded,
      lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;
      Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof:
      from such turn away.
      For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts,
      Ever learning,
      and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.
      Now as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so do these also resist the truth:
      men of corrupt minds,
      reprobate concerning the faith.
      But they shall proceed no further:
      for their folly shall be manifest unto all men, as theirs also was."
      (2 Timothy 3:1-9 ~ AV)
      .

      Delete
    2. Hi Bro. Nicholas,

      Thanks for the comment and also for the verse. I have not found in Zacharias specific false teachings. Would you share your examples of where he varies from the Bible? I have found character issues (the padded resume and exaggerated credentials) and also sins of omission (refusing to declare what needs to be declared). Sins of omission are still sins. But as for false teachings, what have you discovered?

      Delete
    3. Hello Elizabeth,

      In your article you make the statement - 'Finally, the smooth talk. If you listen to enough of Zacharias you notice he uses mostly rhetorical contrivances, philosophy, and looong anecdotes but not a whole lot of Bible. He is an ecumenical philosopher, not a solid apologist. The reason he uses fine sounding arguments and rhetorical tricks is that he is the kind of man Paul is describing being the opposite of himself, in 1 Corinthians 2:4-5, . . . '
      - It is my Biblical understanding that this is a valid description of a Biblical 'false teacher', and it is also my Biblical understanding that we are living in the 'end-times' when the 'Lukewarm Ecumenical Church of Laodiceanism' - not only here in 'Amerika', but worldwide - is now fulfilling the Biblical Prophesy:
      "For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine;
      but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;
      And they shall turn away their ears from the truth,
      and shall be turned unto fables."
      (2 Timothy 4:3-4 ~ AV)

      To me 'Dr.' Zacharias absolutely shows the need for all of those who truly are Biblically "saved", and "in Christ Jesus our Lord" - that we need to Pray unto "the only wise God" for continuous Biblical Spiritual Discernment in these 'end-times' of exponentially increasing 'spiritual blackness' and more and ever-more numbers of "false teachers" / "false prophets" / "false apostles".
      Please read the short article written 350 years ago
      - ‘The Trial Of Spirits – Both In Teachers And Hearers’ - Apologetics Coordination Team (ACT)
      http://www.deceptioninthechurch.com/thetrialofspirits.html

      Mr. Zacharias did not proclaim that "the only begotten Son of God" who is "the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ" IS NOT the 'Jesus' of Mormonism in either of the two times (that I know of) when he spoke in the Mormon Tabernacle, Salt Lake City, UT - about which "Jesus the Christ" personally said:
      "For what is a man advantaged, if he gain the whole world,
      and lose himself,
      or be cast away?
      For whosoever shall be ashamed of me and of my words,
      of him shall the Son of man be ashamed,
      when he shall come in his own glory, and in his Father’s, and of the holy angels."
      (Luke 9:25-26 ~ AV)

      - And - NOWHERE in 'the gospel' according of the ecumenical philosopher Ravi Zacharias' have I read/heard him declare:
      "For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ:
      for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth;
      to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.
      For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith:
      as it is written,
      The just shall live by faith."
      (Romans 1:16-17 ~ AV)

      In these increasingly 'spiritually black' 'end times' that we are living in - RIGHT NOW - 'Biblical CHRISTians' are WARNED in "the word of the Lord" about those who are "false teachers" / "false prophets" / "false apostles":
      "For such are false apostles, deceitful workers,
      transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ.
      And no marvel;
      for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.
      Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness;
      whose end shall be according to their works."
      (2 Corinthians 11:13-15 ~ AV)
      .

      Delete
  20. Unfortunately, it's no wonder the world won't take us seriously - Christians seemingly refuse to get on the same page and rhetorically tear each other apart all over the Internet. Everyone, believer or non-believer, is susceptible to sin and error and we should test everything against scripture. However, many of these rants and replies go too far. Reg Block for example has set forth his edict that anyone who dares to challenge or suggest taking a step back from his assessment of Zacharias is by definition a truth-hater, idolator, and worshipper of Zacharias. Give me a break! Seems like many of the "plank in their own eye" types replying to this blog are idolizing it's content or it's author, and being rather inequitable. The Bible says that all of our righteousnesses are like filthy rags. The Apostle Paul said that his own credentials and works amounted to excrement as compared to Jesus. What human then is qualified to teach or preach in the least? Is every Christian thinker who espouses a debatable or incorrect doctrinal position at any point in their writing to be banished as a heretic? Are we to spend the rest of our lives parsing through every comment made by a Christian thinker or teacher looking for deceit, error, and heresy, and then break our arms patting ourselves on the back when we think we've found it? Be watchful, test all things against scripture, stand up for truth, and expose error to the light, but also show some mutual grace towards one another in our feeble attempts to wrap our minds and hearts around the immensity of Christ.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The world doesn't take us seriously not because there are people pointing out error, but because they hate Jesus. (John 15:18). Even if all discernment people never spoke a word and acted perfectly all the time, the world would never take us seriously. Jesus was perfect and the world hated Him. It's not because people point out doctrinal issues or false teachers that causes division. It's the false doctrine that causes division.

      However, I agree with you that some people who believe they have been given the gift of discernment (1 Corinthians 12:10) criticize every move. Others who have been given the gift of discernment (or, "distinguishing between spirits") never say a word in cowardice or fear. As with every gift given by the Spirit, there are abuses.

      Gladly, there are those who use the gift wisely and appropriately. As you advised believers to do, we should stand up for truth, and expose error to the light, and show grace...but we must also be strong for the Lord. One person whom you believe is inappropriately standing up for the truth, might be one whom another person thinks that person is doing well with their gift. As you said, I'm sure you show mutual grace to the one with which you disapprove.

      Because we are feeble, we need to rely on the Spirit for that all-important balance of strength and gentleness when we protect the truth. And gladly again, there are those who do walk that line and I applaud the Spirit for raising them up. The church needs them (us) and it's why the Spirit endows the church with discerners who do a good job. As for the ones with whom you are disgusted, just ignore them.

      Delete
  21. Some very thoughtful points in response to my previous comment. Thank you.

    ReplyDelete
  22. P.S. - I have to say, though, that there is a difference between the world hating us and whether or not they take us seriously. In general, the world will hate us because it hated Him. Jesus said so. But, I suspect that the world, especially those who are searching, will not take us seriously because we cannot stand together on current social issues let alone doctrinal positions that are set forth clearly in scripture. Just my two cents.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous, you're welcome, and thank you in return. I agree with you- it does not help when we fight over non-doctrinal or tertiary issues. Many times I wish the church could be as it was displayed in Acts 5:

      Now many signs and wonders were regularly done among the people by the hands of the apostles. And they were all together in Solomon’s Portico. 13None of the rest dared join them, but the people held them in high esteem.

      Some of the people who didn't join Christianity respected the disciples because they could see they meant business, this is the same church that a few verses prior in Acts 4:32 were lauded-

      "Now the full number of those who believed were of one heart and soul, and no one said that any of the things that belonged to him was his own, but they had everything in common."

      Delete
  23. I doubt Jesus or his followers would have publicly singled out a person by name as a false teacher. There's a reason why its catergorised. Name shaming reveals a hardened heart. One who forgets forgiveness and the wanting of God that all men be saved. Be careful what's in your treasury rather than theoratics .

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. James, what you're wondering is, is it biblical to name names of false teachers. It is. Let me give you many of the biblical examples of Jesus and the apostles naming the names of false teachers.

      First, Jesus called the Pharisees and Sadducees "hypocrites", "blind guides, " "blind, " "whited sepulchres, " "serpents, " and "ye generation of vipers" (Matt. 23:23-34).

      1. Paul named Peter publicly. Gal 2:11-14
      2. Paul named Hymenaeus and Alexander. (1 Tim. 1: 18-20). He actually said that those two named men had made a shipwreck of the faith.
      3.Paul named Hymenaeus and Philetus. (2 Tim. 2:15-18). He said those two named men were profane and vain babblers.
      4. Paul named Alexander the coppersmith. (2 Tim. 4:14-15).
      5. John named Diotrephes, saying publicly that he "likes to put himself first, does not acknowledge our authority." (3 John 9).
      6. Demas was called out by Paul for loving the world. (2 Tim. 4:10)
      7. Those who like the way of Balaam, the Judaizers, and the Nicolaitans were also named. Never mind the Kings of the OT who were called out by name by the prophets.
      8. Though these two women were not false, Paul named Euodia and Syntyche publicly to expose their disagreement and note that it was harming the flock.
      Moreover, we are told to take certain actions against the wolves/false teachers. We are to mark them, avoid them, rebuke them have no fellowship with them, withdraw from them, have no part with them, do not receive them into our house, separate from them, and reject them. (Rom. 16:17, Titus 1:13, Eph. 5:11, 2 Thess. 3:6, 2 Tim. 3:5; 7, 2 John 10, Titus 3:10, 2 Cor. 11:4, 2 Cor. 6:17). If we do not name the ones who we are to mark, avoid, and shun, then those commands cannot be followed and we are actually in sin. And make no mistake, several of those are exhortations while other of those verses are actually commands. If we do not name them, we can’t take the commanded action against them.

      Read your Bible. It's all in there :)

      Delete
    2. Elizabeth - Personally, I thank you for using "the certainty of the words of truth" from "the word of the Lord" to support your willingness to 'name names' as a Biblical 'Watchman on the Wall' (Ezekiel 33:7-9 ~ AV)
      - And being a truthful voice of WARNING is increasingly needed in these 'latter-days' of more and ever-more Satanically led "antichrist" 'spiritual blackness' - which is largely the result of the massive ignorance by most of those that say that they are Christians of "the certainty of the words of truth" ~ as they are written in "the word of the Lord".
      As one of the ever fewer few Biblically CHRISTian sound Pastors of our wicked times has well said - 'most people's knowledge of the contents of the Holy Bible [AV] is 80 miles wide, and 80 miles long - but only 1/4 inch deep - and getting shallower by the day'.

      Thank you again for this article of Biblically sound WARNING about Mr. Ravi Zacharias - who truly is a very articulate and charming - but very Dangerous 'wolf in sheep's clothing' - about whom it is Biblical WARNED:
      "Take heed therefore unto yourselves,
      AND TO ALL THE FLOCK,
      over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers,
      to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.
      For I know this,
      that after my departing SHALL GRIEVOUS WOLVES ENTER IN AMONG YOU,
      NOT SPARING THE FLOCK.
      ALSO OF YOUR OWN SELVES SHALL MEN ARISE,
      SPEAKING PERVERSE THINGS,
      TO DRAW AWAY DISCIPLES AFTER THEM."
      (Acts 20:28-30 ~ AV)

      - CAPITALization for emphasis of "the words of the Lord", as they are Divinely preserved in the Holy Bible are mine - Bro. Nick

      Delete