The jury is at least partially in re: allegations against Ravi Zacharias, the brilliant apologist whose secret life remained unknown and only alleged until after his death. Basically, the allegations are true.
I wrote this in response to another post, but wanted to make it here on my wall because it's important. Accountability is NOT optional for any of us, but parTICularly not for those in leadership.
Luke 12:2 There is nothing concealed that will not be disclosed, or hidden that will not be made known.
So we all know, the next abuser is doing his/her thing as we speak. Unchecked, unreported, repressed and unabated. It's vital to give the victims loud voices very early and very often when this happens. It's both an abuse of power and a squelching of pain.
We also are guilty of enabling abusers. Bill Clinton (who I call "the good misogynist" to my liberal friends) was voted in for 2 terms with adequate suspicion/allegations of regularly propositioning women in his past. And then there was Monica Lewinsky. Yet because he defended the political platform, had certain charm and was both elected and his blame deflected by his adoring public. It's almost like his "victims" were not such.
Likewise, in Christian circles, we continue to buy books, attend services and big events and share videos from people like Zacharias without any notion or care of what dark things they might be doing. And guaranteed, the next such abuser is months or years from being outed. We get the books, get fed and go through the histrionics of outrage. But do nothing.
James 5:16 Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.
We simply don't do this. All due respect to those of high church tradition who confess to priests, that is NOT what this verse is about. It's about having peer/confessors, a regular group of people with whom one can share struggles in confidence and come clean. And please note the healing aspect .. it makes us sick not to. At best, we ask for private prayers for private "struggles" and call it done. It's not done, even when privacy and confidentiality is guaranteed.
Ravi was a brilliant and broken man who never addressed the broken part. It is the riddle of grace that his ministry's fruit goes on, though his reputation is in ruins. Not knowing his background, but knowing that of others, I would surmise he was likely culturally disposed to do what he did and never submitted it to Christ or the church. I would that we insist our leaders be accountable, practicing James 5:16 so we all can learn how to practice James 5:16. That way, monsters can repent early, before the destruction that takes down so many in their faith.
There are exceptions, thankfully. Tiger Woods, the pre-Christian (afaik he's not a believer) golfer, turned himself in when facing his sex addiction. And there are many, many leaders who put accountability in the forefront of their lives and ministries.
But if we consume and celebrate the ministry of unaccountable people, we are contributing to their monstrous actions.
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