Politicians, morality and a just society

Tipped Scales

(courtesy ChristArt.com)

By Spencer D Gear

If the Australian politicians continue to get it right (I live in Brisbane, Qld), they will persist in upholding biblical morality – and heterosexual marriage (no matter what the polls are saying about homosexual marriage). What about abortion rates, defacto relationships and gambling? There are many moral issues that are eating at the fabric of our nation.

In August 2012, Galaxy Research found that ‘Almost two in three (64%) of Australians believe that same-sex couples should be allowed to marry (and one in three 32% strongly agree with this)’. Should the public vote be that which determines moral standards.

A.  Australian Prime Ministers against same-sex marriage

One of our recent Australian Prime Ministers, Julia Gillard, was against homosexual marriage, as is the current Prime Minister, Tony Abbott.

Julia Gillard 2010.jpg

(Julia Gillard, 27th Australian Prime Minister, courtesy Wikipedia)

 Julia Gillard she said so publicly. The Sydney Daily Telegraph reported her as saying that Ms Gillard (when Prime Minister)

was “on the conservative side” of the gay marriage issue “because of the way our society is and how we got here”….

“I think that there are some important things from our past that need to continue to be part of our present and part of our future,” she said. “If I was in a different walk of life, if I’d continued in the law and was partner of a law firm now, I would express the same view, that I think for our culture, for our heritage, the Marriage Act and marriage being between a man and a woman has a special status.

“Now, I know people might look at me and think that’s something that they wouldn’t necessarily expect me to say, but that is what I believe.

“I’m on the record as saying things like I think it’s important for people to understand their Bible stories, not because I’m an advocate of religion – clearly, I’m not – but once again, what comes from the Bible has formed such an important part of our culture”.[1]

However, Gillard did a back flip. See: Julia Gillard changes her mind to back gay marriage and lambasts Abbott plan (The Guardian Australia, 26 August 2015).

Tony Abbott - 2010.jpg

Tony Abbott (28th Australian Prime Minister, courtesy Wikipedia)

Tony Abbott’s statement about homosexual marriage is:

“(My objection) is purely a legal one. I think the constitution should be adhered to,” he said.

Mr Abbott said his sister Christine, who became engaged to her long term partner Virginia this week, “chews his ear off” on the subject of gay marriage regularly.

But she was unlikely to change his mind.

“She’s a terrific advocate,” he said.

“If there is a ceremony of some kind, yes I’ll be there, with a present. I’ll do the right thing. But I am a traditionalist”.[2]

Kevin Rudd official portrait.jpg

Kevin Rudd (26th Australian Prime Minister, courtesy Wikipedia)

But another recent Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd, has announced to the nation, ‘Kevin Rudd announces he now supports same-sex marriage’ (The Australian, May 21, 2013). In his official statement on his website, ‘Kevin connects’ (20 May 2013), he wrote:

I have come to the conclusion that church and state can have different positions and practices on the question of same sex marriage. I believe the secular Australian state should be able to recognise same sex marriage. I also believe that this change should legally exempt religious institutions from any requirement to change their historic position and practice that marriage is exclusively between a man and a woman. For me, this change in position has come about as a result of a lot of reflection, over a long period of time, including conversations with good people grappling with deep questions of life, sexuality and faith.[3]

What caused him to change his mind? In this statement, these are some of the reasons he gave:

One Saturday morning in Canberra, some weeks ago, a former political staffer asked to have a coffee. This bloke, who shall remain nameless, is one of those rare finds among political staffers who combines intelligence, integrity, a prodigious work ethic, and, importantly, an unfailing sense of humour in the various positions he has worked in around Parliament House. Necessary in contemporary politics, otherwise you simply go stark raving mad.

And like myself, this bloke is a bit of a god-botherer (aka Christian). Although a little unlike myself, he is more of a capital G God-Botherer. In fact, he’s long been active in his local Pentecostal Church.

Over coffee, and after the mandatory depressing discussion about the state of politics, he tells me that he’s gay, he’s told his pastor (who he says is pretty cool with it all, although the same cannot be said of the rest of the church leadership team) and he then tells me that one day he’d like to get married to another bloke. And by the way, “had my views on same sex marriage changed?”.[4]

However, all is not plain sailing for Kevin in his family with his view of homosexuality. Back in 2011, it was announced to the nation, ‘Kevin Rudd’s sister quits Labor over gay marriage policy’ (The Brisbane Times, December 13, 2011). Why? According to this article, it was because

Kevin Rudd’s sister [Loree, age 61] has quit the Australian Labor Party, saying she cannot back a party that supports “homosexuals marrying”….

“I don’t believe gay marriage is good for the community,” she said.

“Homosexuals should be loved and treated right and they should not be discriminated against.

“It is a horrible thing for them to be discriminated against and that’s why my brother introduced laws so they are not discriminated against.

“But to make that huge leap from their rights to breaking a commandment of Moses, to say homosexuals’ relationships is marriage, is utter nonsense.”

However, this is about 2 years before Kevin’s re-born view to support homosexual marriage.

Loree Rudd takes a strong view on homosexuality. It was reported that

KEVIN Rudd’s sister wants Australia to introduce a Vladimir Putin-style ban on schoolchildren being taught about homosexuality.

Loree Rudd – who says she is unlikely to help her brother on election day because she opposes his support for gay marriage – believes the maverick Russian leader’s hardline view on homosexuality is more enlightened than Western leaders.

“It’s like he (Putin) can see the problem ahead,” Ms Rudd, 62, who has just returned from a visit to Russia, said.

“I think that there should be a law (in Australia) protecting children from the propaganda of homosexuality as normal. They’re trying to build their family life and structure in Russia and people in the West don’t seem to understand our family life and structures are breaking down.[5]

Now Kevin Rudd has resigned from federal Parliament. See, ‘Former prime minister Kevin Rudd quits federal politics with emotional speech to Parliament’ (ABC News, 14 November 2013).

The homosexual marriage issue is but one in which government discussions are wavering from the biblical mandate. See my articles:

B.  Which Australian laws are based on God’s justice


Bible Picture Gallery

This is what Aussie politicians will support if they want a stable and well-ordered nation. These values are based on Scripture:

  • Honour your father and mother (honouring parents instead of rebelling against them is something many of us promote with enthusiasm in Australia).
  • Murder is wrong.
  • Stealing is wrong.
  • Bearing false witness (i.e. lying) against another person, government agency, etc is wrong.
  • Marriage is between a man and a woman.

All of these Australian laws are based on Scripture (the 10 commandments –Exodus 20) and Genesis 2:24-25 (heterosexual marriage).

This is God’s view of the role of government:

Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. 2 Consequently, whoever rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. 3 For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and you will be commended. 4 For the one in authority is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for rulers do not bear the sword for no reason. They are God’s servants, agents of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer. 5 Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also as a matter of conscience.

6 This is also why you pay taxes, for the authorities are God’s servants, who give their full time to governing. 7 Give to everyone what you owe them: if you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue; if respect, then respect; if honour, then honour (Romans 13:1-7 NIV).

However, a few questions need to be asked and answered from these verses?

  • What about unjust governments such as those under Nero, Hitler, Stalin, Mao, Pol Pot, Idi Amin, etc? Are all governments established by God? Yes, they are. Some for promoting justice and goodness and some for executing God’s judgment on a nation. I find that a hard one to swallow when I consider the 11 million who were slaughtered during the Nazi Holocaust (6 million Jews and 5 million others) at the hands of an unjust government led by Hitler.
  • Those who ‘do right’ are those who have ‘right’ defined by God’s law in Scripture.
  • Those who ‘do wrong’ are those who effect actions contrary to God’s law in Scripture.

And we know how the country is badly affected because it has abandoned these laws for human-made laws:

  • You shall not commit adultery (marriage between a man and a woman is God’s design for families and the best arrangement for the health of families in the nation). Homosexual marriage and defacto relationshps are not God’s design for the best family arrangement.
  • If people would give up coveting other people and property, the nation would be better off.
  • Giving up the gods of materialism, sport, stone images, etc would lead to better national health.

C.  The God of justice revealed

Love and justice

(courtesy ChristArt.com)

‘By the righteousness and justice of God we mean that phase of God’s holiness which is seen in his treatment of the creature. Repeatedly, these qualities are ascribed to God (2 Chron. 12:6; Ezra 9:15; Neh. 9:33; Isa. 45:21; Dan. 9:14; John 17:25; 2 Tim. 4:8; Rev. 16:5). In virtue of the former [the righteousness of God] He has instituted moral government in the world, imposed just laws upon the creatures, and attached sanctions thereto. In virtue of the latter, he executes his laws through the bestowal of rewards and punishments. The distribution of rewards is called remunerative justice, and is mentioned in such Scriptures as the following: Deut. 7:9-13; 2 Chron. 6:15; Ps. 58:11; Matt. 25:21; Rom. 2:7; Heb. 11:26. The infliction of punishment is called punitive justice [the expression of divine wrath] and is mentioned in such Scriptures as these: Gen. 2:17; Exod. 34:7; Ezek. 18:4; Rom. 1:32; 2:8, 9; 2 Thess. 1:8’ (Thiessen 1949:129-130).

So a moral and just Australian government will be one that sanctions and upholds God’s law for all people. A just government bases its laws on the absolutes of Scripture. Therefore, killing children in the womb will not be pursued. Murder of human beings in the womb will be forbidden. See my article: Exodus 21:22-23 and abortion. See also, ‘Images of aborted children‘ and Abortion and life: A Christian perspective.

Making ‘marriage’ inclusive of homosexuality and sanctioning defacto relationships will be rejected. I refer you to my article links above.

Euthanasia will be forbidden by a government promoting justice. I refer you to my article: Voluntary active euthanasia: A compassionate solution to those in pain;

A sample from these verses in support of God’s righteousness and justice includes:

arrow 2 SE clip art Psalm 89:14, ‘Righteousness and justice are the foundation of your throne; steadfast love and faithfulness go before you’.

arrow 2 SE clip art Daniel 9:14, ‘Therefore the Lord has kept ready the calamity and has brought it upon us, for the Lord our God is righteous in all the works that he has done, and we have not obeyed his voice’.

arrow 2 SE clip art 2 Timothy 4:8, ‘Henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that Day, and not only to me but also to all who have loved his appearing’.

arrow 2 SE clip art Revelation 16:5, ‘And I heard the angel in charge of the waters say, “Just are you, O Holy One, who is and who was, for you brought these judgements’

Since God’s righteousness and justice are synonymous, we know from both Old and New Testaments that God’s righteousness and justice are the foundation of his throne and that God is righteous in all the works he performs. God is the righteous judge and he, the Holy One, is the God of justice. That’s his nature and how he acts.

Thiessen explains further that God demonstrates remunerative justice by giving rewards (see Deut. 7:9, 12, 13; 2 Chron. 6:15; Ps. 58:11; Matt. 25:21; Rom. 2:7; Heb. 11:26). By inflicting punishment, God is engaged in punitive justice as demonstrated by Gen. 2:17: Ex. 34:7; Ezek. 18:4; Rom. 1:32; 2:8-9; 2 Thess. 1:8 (Thiessen 1949:130).

D.  God’s absolutes guarantee justice

I refer you to my article, God’s absolutes are absolutely true. What is the outworking of this in a nation?

Only recently I heard an Indian Christian who was visiting Australia and spoke only a few kilometres from where I live. He has written a magnificent book to demonstrate how the Scripture has been the foundation of healthy Western nations. He admitted this health is waning because of our movement away from the biblical foundation.

I’m speaking of Vishal Mangalwadi and his publication, The Book that made your world: How the Bible created the soul of western civilization (2011).

My Photo

(Courtesy Thomas Nelson; Vishal Magalwadi blog)

He shows how the Bible had created the foundation of western civilisation. His first chapter is: ‘The soul of Western civilization’. In his preface, he wrote:

A cursory glance may give an impression that this is a book about the Bible.  Those who actually read it will know that this is about great literature and great art; great science and liberating technology; genuine heroism and nation building; great virtues and social institutions.  If you have a zillion pieces of a puzzle, would you begin assembling them into one picture, without knowing what that picture is supposed to look like?  The Bible created the modern world of science and learning because it gave us the Creator’s vision of what reality is all about.  This is what made the modern West a reading and thinking civilization.  Postmodern people see little point in reading books that do not contribute directly to their career or pleasure.  This is a logical outcome of atheism, which has now realized that the human mind cannot possibly know what is true and right.  This book is being published with a prayer that it will help revive a global interest in the Bible and in all the great books (Mangalwadi 2011:XXI).

What about the collapse of Rome, the rise and fall of Europe? Mangalwadi explains:

Rome’s collapse meant that Europe lost its soul—the source of its civilizational authority–and descended into the ‘Dark Ages.’ The Bible was the power that revived Europe. Europeans became so enthralled with God’s Word that they rejected their sacred myths to hear God’s Word, study it, internalize it, speak it, and promote it to build the modern world. At the dawn of the twenty-first century, the West is again losing its soul. Will it relapse into a new dark age or humble itself before the Word of the Almighty God? (Mangalwadi 2011:401).

What Mangalwadi noted about the impact of the Bible and truth on a culture is as true for my country of Australia as it is for the United States, Germany, the Central African Republic or Argentina. He asked:

What happens to a culture that is clueless about what is true, good, and just? Pilate answered that question when he declared: ‘I have the power to crucify you or set you free.’ When we believe truth is unknowable, we rob it of any authority. What is left is brute power wielding arbitrary force. Whether a person or an ethnic minority is guilty or innocent becomes irrelevant. His or her right to life depends exclusively on the whims of whoever has power. Any nation that refuses to live under truth condemns itself to live under sinful man (Magalwadi 2011:392).

And this is from a man, Vishal, who was born and raised and lives in India, where he has seen the destructive influences of another worldview.

The more Australian politicians get back to the foundation of Scripture, the healthier this Aussie nation will be. If they continue down the present path we are doomed.

E.  Conclusion

A just and righteous human government will base its laws on the absolutes of Scripture. The Almighty God is the only absolutely just and holy One to provide absolutes to govern a nation with righteousness.

What about for human beings who live in a country, like I do in Australia, that does not make God’s absolutes the basis of God’s law?

We obey the laws of human government, except when they conflict with the law of God. So when governments promote euthanasia, abortion, taking mind-altering illicit drugs, homosexual marriage, and refusing to allow freedom of religion, I will disobey government.

Jeremiah warned:

How lonely sits the city
that was full of people!
How like a widow has she become,
she who was great among the nations!
She who was a princess among the provinces
has become a slave (
Lamentations 1:1 ESV).

Works consulted

Mangalwadi, V 2011, The Book that made your world: How the Bible created the soul of western civilization. Nashville: Thomas Nelson.

Thiessen, H C 1949. Introductory lectures in systematic theology. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company.


[1] The Daily Telegraph, ‘Australian PM Julia Gillard: Gay marriage against my upbringing’, March 21, 2011, available at: http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/pm-julia-gillard-gay-marriage-against-my-upbringing/story-e6freuy9-1226025009815 (Accessed 9 January 2014).

[2] Samantha Landy 2013. Abbott government to challenge ACT’s move to gay marriage (online), Herald Sun, October 23. Available at: http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/victoria/abbott-government-to-challenge-acts-move-to-gay-marriage/story-fni0fit3-1226745078206 (accessed 9 January 2014).

[3] Kevin Connects 2013. ‘Church and State are able to have different positions on same sex marriage’ (online), 20 May. Available at: http://www.kevinruddmp.com/2013/05/church-and-state-are-able-to-have.html (Accessed 28 May 2014).

[4] Ibid.

[5] ‘Exclusive: Rudd’s sister wants Putin-style homosexuality ban’ (online). news.com.au,, 14 July 2013, available at: http://www.news.com.au/national/exclusive-rudd8217s-sister-wants-putinstyle-homosexuality-ban/story-fnho52ip-1226678897017 (Accessed 28 January 2014).

Copyright © 2014 Spencer D. Gear. This document last updated at Date: 21 April 2019.