Gut Reactions to Ravi Zacharias and Being a Safe Church

Travis Johnson joins David Fry and Johnathan Arnold to discuss his recent article, “Ravi Zacharias and the Moral Failure of Spiritual Leaders.”

Quotes from Travis:

  • Victims need to know that it’s safe. The church can be a safe place to come forward and share your experience so that you can get the help that you need.  We in the church want to be a part of that healing process.
  • We have to talk about this for the sake of transparency. People are struggling with this.
  • Within the church, there are other victims of sexual abuse and they need to know we care. We need to be their voice. Many are afraid to come forward and they need to know the church can be a safe place to come forward and share your experience so you can get the help that you need.
  • We need to talk about it because we learn from our mistakes. Other ministries will look at this and say, “What can we do to make sure that this doesn’t ever happen in our organization?” Churches will be learning from this, hopefully implementing changes that will strengthen their ministries.
  • Our people need to hear from us that we care deeply about these issues. That we as leaders want to live lives of holiness and purity. They need to hear from us that we need their help in this area of accountability and transparency.
  • If there are victims of any kind of abuse in the congregation, they need to hear our voice that we care for them, that we love them, and that we will always stand with victims.

Quotes from Fry:

  • It ought to be a reminder to everyone that sin is never just about me and my private life. It always affects relationships and other people.
  • As a church, we have to create a culture in which we are accountable, and have a culture and atmosphere so that if there is wrongdoing and lack of discretion, then that can be dealt with in a truthful and graceful way.
  • When something comes to our attention, we have to listen to it.  It doesn’t matter how impeccable someone may seem to be.
  • A church should have a policy for how things are followed up. If there’s a report of any wrongdoing, there should be a procedure.

Quotes from Arnold:

  • It’s important that we are theologically robust and defend the Christian faith with the best intellectual arguments. But if we are not living a life of integrity, then it doesn’t matter.
  • This is something pastors should talk to their churches about.
Travis Johnson
Travis Johnson
Travis Johnson is Lead Pastor of the Findlay Bible Methodist Church.