“Ravi Zacharias, who spent his life defending Christianity through books and lectures, has died. He was 74.”
That was how CNN reported the death of internationally renown Christian apologists, Dr Ravi Zacharias on 19 May, 2020.
Before seeing that post, I was already aware of that news via an earlier blog post on Bruce Cooper’s Reason Cases for Christ. And my first reaction to the news was that,
“We have lost a great Christian apologist. Ravi will be greatly missed…”
A friend of mine who is also an ardent admirer of Ravi’s, reacted in a similar tone:
“Yeah, Ravi will be greatly missed. His contribution to Christian Apologetics was immense.”
Although I never got to meet him personally in his lifetime (I wish I did!), I have read a couple of his articles and also listened to his recorded audio or video messages.
In all, I am convinced that Ravi was a man of very deep spiritual convictions who shared his faith with both love and passion in a unique way.
He didn’t have any problem engaging with people on intellectual level while making case for Christianity. That alone set him apart from many preachers of the Christian faith.
Ravi was a good soldier of Christ who travelled across several seas, oceans and mountains around the world propagating and defending the gospel of Jesus Christ. He was not afraid to tackle difficult questions around the Christian faith and was willing to engage the thinker at their level.
He even founded an organisation whose driving “goal is to touch both the heart and the intellect of the thinkers and influencers in society by tackling some of the toughest questions about faith and providing thoughtful answers.”
From the time he made the full commitment to follow God at the tender age of 17 ion India, he never looked back till he breathed his last at the ripe age of 74 years old, in sharing the Gospel.
An obituary statement from his organisation, RZIM, sheds a little light on Ravi’s lifelong passion for sharing the gospel of our Lord, Jesus Christ:
“…It was the culmination of a remarkable transformation set in motion when Zacharias, recovering in a Delhi hospital from a suicide attempt at age 17, was read the words of Jesus recorded in the Bible by the apostle John: “Because I live, you will also live.”
“In response, Zacharias surrendered his life to Christ and offered up a prayer that if he emerged from the hospital, he would leave no stone unturned in his pursuit of truth. Once Zacharias found the truth of the gospel, his passion for sharing it burned bright until the very end. Even as he returned home from the hospital in Texas, where he had been undergoing chemotherapy, Zacharias was sharing the hope of Jesus to the three nurses who tucked him into his transport.”
In the passing on to glory of Frederick Antony Ravi Kumar Zacharias, the Christian world has lost a great man who was inbued with both the intellectual and spiritual capacities to advance Christian Apologetics not only in friendly Christian circles but also in not-so-friendly political and academic arenas.
What can you say about the life and times of Ravi Zacharias?