In a recent article published on ChurchLeaders.com, Megan Briggs announced that well-known speaker and apologist, Ravi Zacharias, pulled a lawsuit against a couple who schemed to damage his reputation in a sexting scandal and then commenced to sue him for $5 million, in order to resolve the matter privately.
The entirety of the story is complex, but goes as follows: Ravi Zacharias first met the couple at a speaking engagement in Canada and began communicating with them because the wife "asked him to follow up with her husband, who apparently was questioning the Christian faith." The innocent email correspondence twisted into the woman sending Zacharias inappropriate and eventually nude photos, to which he responded "[I] clearly instructed her to stop contacting me in any form; I blocked her messages, and I resolved to terminate all contact with her.”
The couple claimed in their lawsuit against Ravi Zacharias that "Zacharias exercised 'controlling influence over [the wife] as one with spiritual authority.'" Zacharias responded with his own lawsuit, claiming that the couple had schemed to damage his reputation and sue him for a large sum of money to keep quiet. It is noteworthy to add that, "Stated in the lawsuit is the fact that the couple previously sued a pastor in Ontario, Canada for allegedly coercing them into unadvisable loans and investments."
"Zacharias dropped his federal lawsuit against the couple on November 9, 2017, after the couple requested mediation in lieu of going to trial. Since then, the two parties have reached a private settlement."
In an interview with Christianity Today, Ravi states, "All communication with both of them has concluded, and the legal matters have been resolved. However, at this time, unfortunately, I am legally prevented from answering or even discussing the questions and claims being made by some, other than to say that each side paid for their own legal expenses and no ministry funds were used."
"In my 45 years of marriage to Margie, I have never engaged in any inappropriate behavior of any kind. I love my wife with all my heart and have been absolutely faithful to her these more than 16,000 days of marriage, and have exercised extreme caution in my daily life and travels, as everyone who knows me is aware. I have long made it my practice not to be alone with a woman other than Margie and our daughters—not in a car, a restaurant, or anywhere else. Upon reflection, I now realize that the physical safeguards I have long practiced to protect my integrity should have extended to include digital communications safeguards. I believe—and indeed would counsel others—that the standards of personal conduct are necessarily higher for Christian leaders," states Ravi Zacharias.
As the honored speaker and writer, Ravi Zacharias, concludes, "The Lord rescued me at the age of seventeen, and I promised to leave no stone unturned in my pursuit of truth. He entrusted me with this calling, it is His; any opportunities I have been given are from Him. My life is not my own, it belongs to God. As long as He gives me life and breath I will serve out this calling He has given me. I am committed to finishing well, using whatever years He grants me to share His love and forgiveness, truth and grace, with people everywhere who are looking for meaning and purpose and hope. I bear no ill will toward anybody. God is the God of healing, and He promises a new day. May that be true by His grace."