Tag Archives: ravi zacharias

Ravi Zacharias Caught Lying About Credentials Again

In 2015, Ravi Zacharias was outed for manufacturing claims about his scholarship regarding being a visiting scholar at Cambridge University. This led to him acknowledging and then removing the claim from his website. This year, the same person who did the first investigation has done a second video demonstrating that Ravi has lied again, this time about studying quantum physics at Cambridge University:

Why does Ravi have the need to continuously pad his credentials? We all agree that lying is a sin, therefore as a leader of an international ministry, why doesn’t he seem to understand that making fraudulent claims about oneself is wrong? It’s simply unjustifiable. To call Ravi to be truthful in his actions and descriptions about himself, we are asking those who are interested in the truth to send Ravi an email at the following address: PR@RZIM.ORG

The subject line is as follows: Did Ravi Zacharias really study quantum physics at Cambridge?

The email body is as follows:

Dear Mr. Zacharias and Ms. Malhotra:

I write you in a spirit of inquiry, not challenge. Serious allegations, purporting to be carefully-researched and based on publicly available information, have been made that Mr. Zacharias has systematically exaggerated his academic credentials.

And while I have formed no conclusion as to the merits of these charges, I can see no harm in Mr. Zacharias publicly responding to them. Indeed, given the growing concern about these allegations, it seems that no legitimate purpose will be served by Mr. Zacharias continuing to remain silent.

In furtherance of the truth, might you kindly address the following questions?

Did Ravi Zacharias ever enroll in, or audit, a physics class taught by John Polkinghorne at Cambridge University?

Was Mr. Zacharias ever “a visiting scholar at Cambridge University”? If so, is there a reason that this claim was removed from his website after he was criticized for making it? How does Mr. Zacharias respond to the email statement allegedly made by the Cambridge Office of External Affairs that his attending classes at the University whilst on sabbatical at Ridley Hall would not have made him a visiting scholar at their University?

At page 205 of his autobiography, Mr. Zacharias writes about spending time at Cambridge University where, he says, “I was invited to be a visiting scholar.” Given that Mr. Zacharias’ sabbatical supervisor, Jeremy Begbie, has stated, in writing, that Mr. Zacharias was only a “visiting scholar” at Ridley Hall (which is not a constituent part of the University), might you kindly state who it was who invited Mr. Zacharias to be a visiting scholar at Cambridge University itself?

Mr. Zacharias has claimed to have been “a senior research fellow” at Oxford University. Is this claim true? Was the position in fact an honorary one? If so, is there a reason that in February of 2103 Mr. Zacharias said in an Apologetics315 interview “If I’m in an academic forum, then the fact that I’m a senior research fellow at Wycliffe Hall Oxford University, that’s a credential with which I work in the academy”? Is there a reason the entire Senior Research Fellow claim has been removed from his website?

Mr. Zacharias’s bio and publicity materials refer to him as “Dr. Zacharias.” Does Mr. Zacharias have a PhD or other academic doctorate? If not, how might he reply to the concern that his routine use of the title “Dr.” is likely to create a false impression in significant numbers of people?

The jacket of Mr. Zacharias’s book New Birth or Rebirth? says “Zacharias holds three doctoral degrees.” His publisher bios at Random House and Penguin refer to him holding multiple doctoral degrees. These make no mention of such degrees being honorary. What responsibility does Mr. Zacharias have to ensure that those promoting the sales of his books make clear that his doctorates are exclusively honorary? (This question may, of course, be disregarded if Mr. Zacharias has in fact earned an academic doctorate.)

Thank you very much for your anticipated cooperation in shedding light on these important issues.

Sincerely,
[Your Name Here]

More details to follow.

Response to Hill’s and Baez’s Defense of Ravi Zacharias’ Fraud by Steve Baughman

The following is a guest post by Steve Baughman, otherwise known as the Friendly Banjo Atheist on YouTube. Steve was the first person to bring to the public’s awareness, the issue of Ravi Zacharias’ false academic credentials. To catch up to speed, check this article here. Since Steve’s initial video about Ravi’s fraud, there have been a lot of ‘excuses’ offered in the name of defending Ravi by those close to or working on behalf of his ministry. In this exclusive article, Steve responds to some of these defensive arguments and demonstrates without a doubt that Ravi has personally benefited from the use of fraudulent academic credentials. Perhaps though, what is most troublesome, is that Christians have chosen to defend Ravi, rather than calling upon him to be truthful and honest. Does this mean that Christians are willing to commit fraud, so as long as it benefits their faith?


STEVE BAUGHMAN RESPONDS TO NICK HILL AND PROFESSOR BEAU BAEZ

NICK HILL’S DEFENSE OF RAVI ZACHARIAS

Nick Hill’s defense of his former Christian apologetics teacher is full of facts.  Almost all of them are irrelevant, and what is left is misleading, false or downright bizarre.

The first point misleads. Ravi Zacharias does not stand accused of specifically claiming to have a PhD. The accusation is that hepresents himself as one who has earned a PhD when he has not.  For the specifics of Mr. Zacharias’ “Dr. Zacharias” behavior, see my reply to Professor Beau Baez below.

Nick Hill’s second is bizarre.  The complaint against Mr. Zacharias is that nowhere at his RZIM.org bio does he disclose that his doctorates are “honorary.”  Mr. Hill thinks this no problem.  If we want to know if the doctorates are real or honorary, all we have to do is “google the titles and where he received them” and we can see that these schools do not offer academic doctorates. Thus, we would be able to deduce that Mr. Zacharias’ degrees are honorary.

One wonders how Mr. Hill can be serious that, in lieu of Mr. Zacharias simply putting the word “honorary” in his bio, we are to spend hours researching and visiting the websites of each school to see if they offer academic doctorates of the kinds Mr. Zacharias was awarded.  I say “hours” because Mr. Zacharias does not list the names of the schools that gave him these doctorates, so we would first have to find that out somehow.

Third, and falsely, Mr. Hill tells us that during his sabbatical Mr. Zacharias “was supervised by a Cambridge scholar Dr. Jeremy Begbie.”  Mr. Hill should know, however, that Dr. Begebie did not begin teaching at Cambridge until 1993, three years after Mr. Zacharias was his student at Ridley Hall.  This information is publicly available at Dr. Begbie’s Duke University profile.

https://divinity.duke.edu/sites/divinity.duke.edu/files/documents/cv/BegbieCV-0714.pdf

In his defense of Ravi Zacharias Nick Hill presents us with a fine example of the absurd and sometimes fact-adverse depths to which devotees of Ravi Zacharias will descend in defense of their guru.

PROFESSOR BEAU BAEZ’S DEFENSE OF RAVI ZACHARIAS

Law Professor Beau Baez does not fare much better.  He offers five defenses of Mr. Zacharias. Each one is very easily dispatched.

First, Mr. Zacharias should not be held accountable when others loosely refer to him as “Dr. Zacharias.” 

This is a straw man.  The problem is that Mr. Zacharias actively promotes himself as “Dr. Zacharias.”  We see it at his website, at his YouTube posts, in the jacket of his autobiography, and it seems that he even instructs his secretary to call him “Dr.” (When I called his office to speak to him, his personal secretary answered “Dr. Zacharias office.”  You can too. (770) 449-6766. Ask to be put thru to Mr. Zacharias’ office.)

Second, it is not uncommon for people to call themselves “Dr.” based solely on honorary degrees.

The problem for Mr. Zacharias is that Mr. Zacharias uses the title “Dr.”in academic settings where it is very likely to cause some people (probably many) to believe he has earned an academic doctorate. It is undisputed that this is an ethically controversial practice,

It is undisputed that more people will falsely believe he has a PhD if he calls himself “Dr. Zacharias” than if he calls himself “Mr. Zacharias,”

Mr. Zacharias does not disclose at his website that the doctorate degrees are honorary,

The only conceivable benefit of using the “Dr.” title and failing to disclose the honorary nature of the degrees is that it bolsters Mr. Zacharias’ public image by leading many to think he has a PhD,

and

The potential to mislead can be greatly reduced by simply adding the word “honorary” to his bio and refraining from using the controversial title.

Perhaps most noteworthy is the fact that even one of the institutions that gave Mr. Zacharias an honorary doctorate does not approve of the practice.  In response to my inquiry, Asbury University informed me that, “As a general rule, Asbury University — which utilizes Associated Press style as its foundation — does not refer to a recipient of an honorary doctorate issued by the University as “Dr.”

Knowing the controversial nature of the practice and its potential to mislead, Mr. Zacharias continues to hold himself out to the world as “Dr. Ravi Zacharias.”

Third, Prof. Baez says “when I saw the degrees that he listed on his website I immediately recognized them as honorary degrees. I see no reason to list the obviousness [sic] nature of the degrees–he was not hiding anything.”

This is truly odd.  Mr. Zacharias’s website says

“He has been honored with the conferring of six doctoral degrees, including a Doctor of Laws and a Doctor of Sacred Theology.”

That’s it!  How was Prof. Baez able to “immediately recognize these as honorary degrees” when four of them are not even named?  And how did he know that there was not a real doctorate amongst them?

If one Googles “Doctor of Sacred Theology” and “Doctor of Laws” one immediately learns that these are often demanding academic degrees in both the United Kingdom and the United States (the two countries where Mr. Zacharias spends most of his time).

These are not “immediately recognizable” as honorary degrees.

Now, in fairness to Prof. Baez, he has indicated to me in correspondence that “When I see that many doctorate degrees I immediately conclude that they are honorary degrees. Two earned doctorate degrees is fairly unusual, let alone anything beyond that. ”

But this argument is also odd. Prof. Baez assumes it to be common knowledge that “conferring of six doctoral degrees” means they areall honorary.  But why does he assume this?

A casual investigator trying to ascertain Mr. Zacharias’ actual credentials might find that Allam Iqbal holds 17 PhDs from top universities, and that Viva Luxme has earned 15!

http://answerscdn.com/Q/What_is_the_most_Ph.Ds_one_person_has_ever_earned

I do not know if this is information or misinformation.  But that comes up when one searches.  And it gives the lie to Prof. Baez’s apparent assumption that we are all like him and “immediately recognize” that “conferring of six doctoral degrees” means that all were honorary.

What conceivable reason could Ravi Zacharias, or his people, have for not simply adding the word “honorary” to his bio, other than to mislead?

Fourth, Prof. Baez tells us that “it is possible that Ravi was unaware of the loose affiliation Ridley now has with Cambridge University.”

By way of brief background, Ravi Zacharias has very thin academic credentials. He has a Master’s Degree in Divinity and no academic publications to his credit. The crown jewel of his academic bio is the claim, which he has loudly made for the past 25 years, that he was once a “Visiting Scholar at Cambridge University.”  Without that claim he is just another circuit rider with a preacher’s degree and a load of political connections.

I investigated and found the Cambridge claim to be false.  The true fact is that in 1990 Mr. Zacharias did a sabbatical at a relatively unknown place called Ridley Hall, which was affiliated with Cambridge, and that while at Ridley he “attended” some classes at Cambridge.  Cambridge University confirmed that Mr. Zacharias was never a visiting scholar at Cambridge University.

I then informed Mr. Zacharias of my intent to go public with this information if he could not explain himself. Several days later he withdrew the “Visiting Scholar at Cambridge University” claim from his website bio.

Prof. Baez now asks us to believe that perhaps Mr. Zacharias was confused and honestly thought that being on sabbatical at Ridley Hall and attending classes at Cambridge University entitled him to claim that he was a “visiting scholar at Cambridge University.”

This is very charitable to Mr. Zacharias. But why should we assume “good faith” on Mr. Zacharias’ part here? We may acknowledge the affiliation between Ridley Hall and Cambridge University just as we may acknowledge the affiliation between, say, Babson College and M.I.T.  The fact remains that any Babson student who claims to have been a “visiting scholar at M.I.T.” merely by virtue of that affiliation and attending some classes at M.I.T. would be subject to academic discipline for C.V. fraud.

To make matters worse, I was not the first to raise the Cambridge problem with Mr. Zacharias.

I have a devout Christian colleague who several years ago developed suspicions about Mr. Zacharias’ Cambridge claim.  He informs me that he made several inquiries of Mr. Zacharias’ ministry about the matter and eventually RZIM stopped replying. My colleague then stopped pursuing the matter.

I must also note that Mr. Zacharias’ supervisor at Ridley Hall, Dr. Jeremy Begbie, makes a very clear distinction in his C.V. between his duties at Cambridge and his duties at Ridley Hall.

https://divinity.duke.edu/sites/divinity.duke.edu/files/documents/cv/BegbieCV-0714.pdf

Should we not expect similar integrity and clarity of understanding from Mr. Zacharias?  After all, this was an impressive claim to be making. Are we to believe that Mr. Zacharias just never noticed its falsity until a banjo playing atheist on the Internet threatened to expose him?

Finally, Prof. Baez notes that “From what I understand, as soon as any question was raised about his credentials he quickly clarified them on his website.”

That is not quite accurate.  Mr. Zacharias did remove the false Cambridge claim.  But he continues to refer to himself as “Dr. Zacharias” in his videos and at his website, where the word “honorary” remains tellingly absent.

Prof. Baez asks us to be charitable and to not impute ill motives to Mr. Zacharias.  We can agree that charity is a good policy.  But it cannot be disputed that what we see with Mr. Zacharias on the “Dr. Zacharias” issue is (at very best!) a willingness to construe an ethical gray area in a way most conducive to his public image.  It also cannot be disputed that his practice of calling himself “Dr. Zacharias” is more likely to mislead large numbers of people than “Mr. Zacharias” would. But he chooses to do it anyway.

Such a demonstrated preference for public image over truth makes it more likely that on the “visiting scholar at Cambridge University” claim Ravi Zacharias simply chose to mislead the public because it made him look good and he thought he could get away with it.  And he did, for 25 years.

All interested in making inquiry directly of Mr. Zacharias’ press secretary may contact Ruth RuthMalhotra, RZIM Public Relations, Email:pr@rzim.org   Phone: (770) 449-6766

———————————

Steve Baughman is an attorney and banjo teacher in San Francisco.  He is known on YouTube as The Friendly Banjo Atheist who first exposed the misleading claims Ravi Zacharias made about his credentials.  Mr. Baughman first contacted Mr. Zacharias’ ministry with his concerns in May, 2015. All references to Mr. Zacharias’ website are as of 10/27/15.

Steve can be reached through his Friendly Banjo Atheist channel at YouTube or by email at FriendlyBanjoAtheist (at) gmail  (dot) you-know- what.

Has Evangelist Ravi Zacharias Lied About His Credentials?

The following is a guest post by three individuals who have taken it upon themselves to investigate the academic credentials of Ravi Zacharias. They have included their names, and their own academic qualifications and can be contacted by commenting on the post. Any comments or questions posted, will be sent to them.

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HAS EVANGELIST RAVI ZACHARIAS LIED ABOUT HIS CREDENTIALS?

WHO WE ARE

We are two atheists and a Christian who are concerned that a prominent evangelist, Mr. Ravi Zacharias, has engaged in misconduct that undermines academic integrity and that tends seriously to mislead the public at large.   We issue this Press Release with two primary goals in mind. First, we wish to draw attention to what we believe are the dishonest practices of Ravi Zacharias.  Second, we hope the facts presented here will prompt professional journalists and investigators to continue the work we have started.

  • Steve Baughman is an attorney and part time philosophy student at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, CA.  He holds a Masters Degree in Asian Studies from University of California at Berkeley. He is the creator of the YouTube channel Friendly Banjo Atheist, which first presented the matter of Mr. Zacharias’ credentials to the public.

  • Tom Lunal has a B.S. in Mathematics from U.C. Santa Barbara and an M.S. in Computer Science from USC. He worked for Microsoft before moving to a position at New York Life.

  • Andy Norman is a professor of philosophy at Carnegie Mellon University (CMU). He has a PhD from Northwestern University and has published widely on the norms of responsible discourse.

ABOUT RAVI ZACHARIAS

Ravi Zacharias is a world renowned Christian evangelist who has written over a dozen books. Former White House counsel, Chuck Colson, called him “the great apologist of our time.”  Mr. Zacharias maintains a busy travel schedule lecturing all over the world. He resides in Atlanta, Georgia, where his ministry, Ravi Zacharias International Ministries (RZIM), is headquartered. RZIM has numerous overseas offices and maintains a staff of over 100 people.  According to Mr. Zacharias’ website, his weekly radio program, “Let My People Think”, airs on over 2,000 outlets worldwide.

A. SUMMARY OF CONCERNS

THE CAMBRIDGE CLAIM

Ravi Zacharias has claimed for many years that he was a “visiting scholar at Cambridge University.”  He presents this claim prominently in his press bios and in his memoirs.  He makes frequent mention of it in his public appearances (in about 90% of his youtube videos). It is by far the most impressive item in his academic portfolio.

The claim is absolutely false.  The University of Cambridge press office has confirmed the same to us.

We recently contacted Mr. Zacharias and informed him of our belief that he has misrepresented having been a “visiting scholar at Cambridge University.” We informed him of our intent to go public with this information and we asked him for a response. None came.

Shortly thereafter Mr. Zacharias deleted the claim from his official website bio.

B. THE DETAILS OF MR. ZACHARIAS’ MISREPRESENTATIONS

THE CAMBRIDGE CLAIM

In his memoirs Mr. Zacharias states the following:  “By 1990, the load of ministry had gotten so heavy that I decided to take a sabbatical for the first time since I had started in the ministry. I spent part of that year at Cambridge University in England with my family, and it was a very special time for us.”

He also writes “I was invited to be a visiting scholar, and I decided to focus my studies on the Romantic writers and moralist philosophers.” (Walking from East to West, at p. 205.)

Until several weeks ago, Mr. Zacharias’ website bio at RZIM.org stated, “Dr. Zacharias has been a visiting scholar at Cambridge University.” Mr. Zacharias is frequently introduced at his university appearances as having been “a visiting scholar at Cambridge University.” The President of Liberty University said “Ravi was a visiting scholar at Cambridge university” when awarding him an honorary doctorate recently. The claim also appears on the jacket of his book, The Real Face of Atheism and a few of his books claim in the back cover that he was educated at Cambridge University.

A Google search of [“Ravi Zacharias” “visiting scholar at Cambridge University”] reveals thousands of pages in which the claim is repeated.

The claim is false as mentioned earlier, and Mr. Zacharias withdrew it shortly after we asked him for a response to our concern that he has misrepresented his Cambridge visiting scholar status.

How do we know it is false? We contacted the University of Cambridge Office of External Affairs and Communications and asked whether Mr. Ravi Zacharias was ever a visiting scholar at their university.  We were told in writing the following:

 1. “We can confirm that Mr. Zacharias spent a sabbatical term at Ridley Hall in the city of Cambridge.” He was there for a mere 12 weeks (1 term).

2. “Ridley Hall is independent from Cambridge University and trains people for effective work in the Church of England”.

3. “Attending lectures and classes at the University of Cambridge whilst on sabbatical at Ridley Hall would not confer University of Cambridge Visiting Scholar status on a student. Ridley Hall is not and has never been a constituent part of the University of Cambridge and has different criteria for granting Visiting Scholar status.”

4. “All student and visitors to Ridley Hall know the difference between Ridley hall and Cambridge University and to equate this is plainly false.”
Insofar as it is exclusively the province of the University of Cambridge to decide who constitutes a “visiting scholar” at their institution, we believe it to be established beyond dispute that Mr. Zacharias’ visiting scholar claim is false.  
We sincerely ask that you contact Cambridge University and Ridley Hall independently and verify this information.
 

FIRST ANTICIPATED DEFENSE FROM RAVI ZACHARIAS

1. The close connection between the University of Cambridge and Ridley Hall justifies the claim. 

No it does not.  We note that his website was recently changed to state that “Dr. Zacharias has been a visiting scholar at Ridley Hall, Cambridge (then affiliated with Cambridge University, now more recently allied with Cambridge and affiliated with Durham University) where he studied moralist philosophers and literature of the Romantic era.) This is totally false. It makes it seem as if Ridley Hall was a constituent Hall of Cambridge University back when he was there. The officials at Cambridge University and Ridley Hall confirmed that it has never has that affiliation. Ridley Hall has always been an independent clergy training school and never part of Cambridge University.

However, we acknowledge the close affiliation between the University of Cambridge and Ridley Hall.  Both are in the town of Cambridge, and both are part of the Cambridge Theological Federation (CTF). There are various institutions that are a part of the Cambridge Theological Federation and the students and others are allowed to utilized the facilities, libraries at these various schools. They are also able to take a few Cambridge, Durham etc. accredited courses. That’s it, no more, no less. No one can ever claim that being at one equals to being at the other as Ravi Zacharias might claim.

We believe it to be a misleading practice to claim to have been a “visiting scholar” at one institution by virtue of one’s doing a sabbatical at a different “affiliated” institution.  We note that Mr. Zacharias’ supervisor at Ridley, Dr. Jeremy Begbie, who taught at both Ridley and Cambridge University, draws a very clear distinction in his own Curriculum Vitae between Ridley Hall and Cambridge University. (See https://divinity.duke.edu/academics/faculty/jeremy-begbie ).
SECOND ANTICIPATED RESPONSE FROM RAVI ZACHARIAS
2.  The “visiting scholar at Cambridge University” claim is accurate because Mr. Zacharias attended classes and lectures at Cambridge University while on Sabbatical at Ridley
Again, the University of Cambridge has told us in writing that ““Attending lectures and classes at the University of Cambridge whilst on sabbatical at Ridley Hall would not confer University of Cambridge Visiting Scholar status on a student.” The Director of Programs at Ridley Hall actually said “that such a claim might be made for personal benefit but would be absolutely false. If you want to study at Ridley, you would apply to Ridley and if you want to study at Cambridge University, you would apply to Cambridge University.” There is absolutely no justification for making any of the claims that Ravi Zacharias has made even if he took a few classes at Cambridge. Seeing that he was there foronly 12 weeks, just how many classes would he have taken anyway?
Additionally, just think about it. Even if we, for the sake of argument grant that he was indeed a visiting scholar at Cambridge University (which he clearly was not!), does it justify the marketing and publicizing he has done for years trying to pass as a Cambridge scholar. His book, DVDs, CDs, public talks, sermons, speech bios etc. are full of references to being a visiting scholar at Cambridge University, making it look like he spent years doing research at that fine institution. The actual fact of the matter is that he was never a visiting scholar at Cambridge University but was on a sabbatical at Ridley Hall.
THIRD ANTICIPATED RESPONSE FROM RAVI ZACHARIAS
3. The vagueness of the term “visiting scholar” justifies Mr. Zacharias’ use of it:

Now we move to the designation of visiting scholar status. The official record at Ridley Hall says that he was on Sabbatical for one term (12 weeks). You can check it out independently. Just call them! We acknowledge that the term “visiting scholar” is used both formally and informally.  In its formal sense it carries great prestige, especially at respected institutions like Cambridge University. In its informal sense, it can mean nothing more than attending lectures and classes for a short period  while on sabbatical at a given institution.However, the informal designation cannot be utilized for official purposes. For instance, if I go to Cambridge and do some research for a few months and interact with faculty/students, I could unofficially call myself a visiting scholar but unless the university has officially invited me I cannot claim so in official documents. This, however, is precisely what Ravi Zacharias has done. His official records show that he was on sabbatical at Ridley Hall but he claims that he was visiting scholar at Cambridge University. He writes in his autobiography that he was “invited by Cambridge University.” This is not a case of stretching the truth, its a case of telling an absolute lie.

Mr. Zacharias clearly intends us to understand his “visiting scholar at Cambridge University” claim in the formal, prestigious sense.  It is, quite simply, the crown jewel of his otherwise very unremarkable academic history.  It is a claim he has trumpeted loudly and widely.

To be sure, Mr. Zacharias may now urge as his defense that he intended the claim to be understood informally (perhaps as nothing more than him attending lectures and classes at Cambridge while he was at Ridley.)  But the more Mr. Zacharias drifts from the formal/prestigious conception of the term “visiting scholar,” the more the public will be justified in feeling deceived. Why make such a big issue of it in the press materials (books, videos, CDs, speech bios etc.) if it was an informal arrangement involving nothing more than “attending lectures and classes”?

REMAINING CONCERNS:

We believe that Mr. Zacharias’ deception is clearly established. Nevertheless, we believe that we might gain greater clarity as to the depth of that deception if several outstanding questions be answered.

CONCERN 1:
Who invited Mr. Zacharias to be a “visiting scholar at Cambridge”? Which office at Cambridge University invited him? They have absolutely no record of him being there.  Did Mr. Zacharias formally take classes at Cambridge? Or did he merely audit? Were these graduate classes? (See p. 205-206 of Walking From East to West where Mr. Zacharias specifically claims to have been invited to be a visiting scholar at Cambridge University.)  

We hope others will be more successful than we have been in obtaining information from Mr. Zacharias about these significant matters of concern.   
CONCERN 2:
The website at RZIM claims that “He has been honored with the conferring of six doctoral degrees, including a Doctor of Laws and a Doctor of Sacred Theology.” Please notice the wording. This makes it look like he earned these doctorates, especially to the person in the pew. What it should say clearly is that “He has been conferred six honorary doctoral degrees, including a Doctor of Laws and a Doctor of Sacred Theology.” Again, there is always this need for Mr. Zacharias to boost his credentials by either telling a lie or by making things unclear.

CONCERN 3:

Mr. Zacharias claims to have “lectured at the world’s most prestigious universities.” (See for example the jacket of his book The Real Face of Atheism.  In his autobiography he states, “I have spoken on almost every major campus – Berkeley, Princeton, Cornell, you name it.  If we haven’t been to a major school it is more often than not because we haven’t had the time to accommodate the request.” Walking from East to West, p. 209.

We are concerned about the extent to which Mr. Zacharias’ claim implies that his appearances at such universities have been pursuant to invitations from the faculty or the institutions.  It is our understanding that Mr. Zacharias’ appearance at prestigious universities has been primarily, if not exclusively, pursuant to invitations from student clubs and Christian evangelical organizations or local churches. For instance, many of Mr. Zacharias’ appearances at prestigious universities have been sponsored by the Veritas Forum, a Christian campus ministry that promotes discussion “about life’s hardest questions and the relevance of Jesus Christ to all of life.”  Mr. Zacharias is closely connected to the organization, appearing in their promo video and writing the preface to the Veritas founder’s book. http://veritas.org/about/#link1. He has never been invited by Harvard, Yale or Princeton universities i.e., officially by the universities for any lectures. However, he often refers to his lectureships at various leading universities in the world. Misleading at best and false at worst. None of the schools he mentions, like Harvard, Yale or Princeton have officially invited him to give a lecture. He was just on their campus at the sponsorship of the Christian organization, the Veritas Forum.

CONCERN 4:
It is an open question whether Ravi Zacharias qualifies as any kind of scholar at all.  Not only has he no doctoral degree, to our knowledge he has published nothing in scholarly journals, done no peer-reviewed research, and his academic qualifications are limited to his having a Masters of Divinity and having held the chair of evangelism and contemporary thought at a missionary training school, Alliance Theological Seminary in Nyack, NY.  He is a great speaker and communicator but no scholar. If he really is a foremost thinker and philosopher, has he ever delivered a paper at the American Philosophical Association, The Society of Christian Philosophers, The American Academy of Religion, The Evangelical Philosophical Society, The Evangelical Theological Society or any other academic forums? the answer is NO.
CONCLUSION:
1. His claim about being a visiting scholar at Cambridge University is absolutely false.
2. Cambridge University as well as Ridley Hall have given us written statements that this claim is false.
3. He was officially on a sabbatical at Ridley Hall in the city of Cambridge for a term (12 weeks)
4. He continues to project the false impression that his doctorates are earned.
5. He continues to project the false impression that he is a scholar lecturing at leading universities like Harvard and Yale. A claim that is absolutely false. None of these universities recognize him as an academic or intellectual.
6. He is a great speaker and communicator but not a scholar in any way. His false projection is not fair to those who are actual scholars.
7. All that Ravi and RZIM need to do is to present an official letter from Cambridge University that he was a “visiting scholar” at their institution and the inquiries and investigations will end. Neither he nor RZIM are undertaking any efforts to get this done because you cannot substantiate a lie.
Thanks,
Tom, Steve and Andy

Fraud at Ravi Zachiarias International Ministries: Fake Qualifications Exposed

Ravi Zacharias of Ravi Zacharias International Ministries is being called upon by the public to respond to allegations of manufacturing his theological and academic qualifications. Touted as a “Dr” who is alleged to be a visiting scholar at Cambridge University, UK, Ravi Zacharias is facing claims of being a fraudster. Popular YouTuber FriendlyBanjo attempted to verify the academic qualifications of Mr. Zacharias and found them to be absolutely false. In a damning video, showing clear manipulation of academic credentials and falsifying biographical details, the inter-faith community is calling on Mr. Zacharias to tender his resignation, and return monies stolen under false pretenses. Mr. Zacharias is the founder of an international evangelical ministry which attempts to spread the “Gospel” worldwide, specifically targeting Atheists and Muslims. An acclaimed author and international speaker, Mr. Zacharias is now being labeled as an Ergun Caner 2.0, a complete and total fraudster who attempted to pass of honorary degrees as having been academically qualified.

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Questions are now also being asked about monies collected under these false pretenses, which are said to have been used in the publication and promotion of the Qadiani Nabeel Qureishi’s latest publication, “Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus”. Written in a similar style to Ravi Zacharias’s biography, as well as funded and promoted by Ravi’s Ministry, many are now asking if Nabeel’s biography also contains similar embellishments as have now been indicated in his mentor’s manufactured biography. As pictured above, Nabeel closely works with Ravi and is featured heavily in RZIM’s Toronto tour on September 12th of this year. Many faithful believers assumed that Mr. Ravi’s theological and academic qualifications were accurate given his popularity in evangelical circles, today that assumption is causing many to regret donating thousands of dollars to a fraudster on par with internationally condemned Ergun Caner who also falsified academic and theological qualifications, as well as having been accused of manufacturing his biography in exchange for monies, academic positions and paid speaking engagements.

It remains to be seen whether or not these allegations will be clarified by Mr. Ravi Zacharias, or by those profiting from monies donated under false pretenses, such as Nabeel Qureishi. See the shocking video below:

and God knows best.