Category Archives: Government

Government issues

Lies about children not in detention centres

Who are the Tamil family from Biloela and why are they being deported? -  ABC News

By Spencer Gear PhD

As a person who is actively interested in Australian politics, I was shocked by what seemed to be a lie perpetrated in the leaders’ debate on 8 May 2019 with a potential audience of millions.

In his opening reply to a question from the moderator, Sabra Lane, Scott Morrison discussed the unpopular turn-back-the-boats policy that was eventually successful and saved many lives. Then he added, “We’ve got every child out of detention”.

Later he repeated it: “Ultimately, we’ve got every child out of detention”. That is fake news. What is the truth about children in detention?
If you read the change.org petition link, “Our PM knows these kids are suffering” at
https://www.change.org/p/peter-dutton-bring-priya-back-to-biloela/u/24530228 of 9 May 2019 you’ll discover that there are still children in detention in Australia

This link begins with what Scott Morrison said at the 3rd leaders’ debate. “Ultimately, we’ve got every child out of detention. Ultimately, we’ve got every child out of detention. Ultimately, we’ve got every child out of detention. Ultimately, we’ve got every child out of detention. Ultimately, we’ve got every child out of detention, etc.”

He repeated this slogan over and over in 2019. See: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6ypddAEAQFI&feature=youtu.be. However, these two little Sri Lankan children have been in detention for 15 months. Their father has been evicted from Australia and been returned to Sri Lanka. His wife and children may never see him again.

The Scriptures exhort Australia and individuals, “Whoever gives to the poor will have plenty. Whoever refuses to help them will get nothing but curses” (Proverbs 28:27).

This is a callous government that splits up families against the UNHCR’s pleading and legal representation. Where are the mercy and compassion of the people (including the Minister of Immigration) in this department to devastate a family this way?
As I watched the debate, I shouted to myself, ‘That is not the case. That is not the case. He’s lying’.

I was thinking of Priya, Nades (Thileepan) and their two beautiful children (born in Biloela Qld), Kopika and Tharunicaa who are Sri Lankan Tamil refugees who were wonderfully assimilated into the small central Qld town of Biloela.

That was until they were reefed out of their Biloela house in the early hours of the morning and whisked away to be eventually placed in a detention centre 15 months ago.

The change.org petition has been signed by 184,000 people. From this petition, I learned that after months of severe vitamin deficiencies and dental problems little Tharunicaa’s mouth hurt so much she couldn’t eat solid food.

Because we need sunlight to receive vitamin D to strengthen teeth and bones, the children have suffered from this deficiency. In addition they need fresh and healthy food and access to proper medical care.

These children ‘have been locked indoors for most of the last 15 months. Fresh food is restricted and visitors are banned from bringing it with them. And when Priya begs for her kids to see a doctor, she is fobbed off with Panadol’.

They have been refused visas to stay in Australia by the Department of Home Affairs and right now the family is in home detention in Perth. To say that ‘ultimately, we’ve got every child out of detention’ is a whopper!
Sadly, it seems that Scott Morrison lied over and over with his repeated statement. The children and parent in this family are still locked away in detention. The Coalition does not deserve to be in government when it treats people like this and tells this kind of lie.

Have they forgotten that ‘it is more blessed to give than to receive’? Giving a comfortable and peaceful life to Mum, Dad and the two children should be a top priority for this government.

According to The Guardian Australia, in July 2018 the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees(UNHCR), Andrej Mahecic, said from Geneva, that Nades’ expulsion from Australia contravened ‘the basic right of family unity, as well as the fundamental principle of the best interests of the child’.

In spite of the UNHCR trying to gain assurances from the Coalition government that Nades ‘would not be removed from Australia and be allowed to remain with his family’, there were multiple requests lodged by legal representatives for intervention by the Minister for Home Affairs, but ‘collective representations were unsuccessful’.

I attempted to obtain an update on this situation from the UNHCR in the ACT by asking two questions: “Are mother and two children being allowed to remain in Australia permanently?”

Secondly, “What is the situation for the husband Thileepan who has been returned to Sri Lanka by the Australian government? Has any progress been made by the UNHCR in its further negotiations with the Australian Department of Home Affairs/Immigration for him to be reunited with his family?”

Unfortunately, I was unable to progress this inquiry because of the UNHCR’s response: “For reasons of confidentiality and protection, UNHCR does not comment on individual refugee cases”.

In the final week of this election campaign, the LNP can live up to its promises of no children in detention and release this family from the Melbourne detention centre and bring the father back from Sri Lanka.

Then, I urge the Coalition to apologise to this family for the trauma it has unnecessarily inflicted on them. It is a priority to grant them permanent residency and pay for their return fares to the Biloela community in Qld.


Copyright © 2021 Spencer D. Gear. This document last updated at Date: 21 September 2021.



Scott Morrison’s failure to integrate faith with politics

Morrison in 2009

By Spencer D Gear PhD

See Acts 5:29 (NLT), ‘But Peter and the apostles replied, “We must obey God rather than any human authority”’. The NRSV has a similar translation.

1. Prime Minister Scott Morrison doesn’t mix religion with politics.

Before the 2019 election,

Prime Minister Scott Morrison says his “faith is not about politics”. . . . Asked directly . . . if he believed gay people go to hell, Mr Morrison replied: “I support the law of the country.”

“I don’t mix my religion with politics or my faith with politics and it’s always been something that has informed how I live my life and how I seek to care for and support others,” he said. “That is what I always seek to do”

The Liberal leader abstained from the final vote on the floor of Parliament.

“It’s law. And I’m glad that the change has now been made and people can get on with their lives. That’s what I’m happy about” (Bagshaw 2019).

2. I find Morrison to be a disobedient Christian

Firstly, ScoMo is to be commended that he abstained from the final vote on homosexual marriage.

However, the position, “I don’t mix my religion with politics or my faith with politics” is in violation of Acts 5:29.

How is it possible for him to have a Christian faith that “has informed how I live my life and how I seek to care for and support others,” and yet not affect how he votes in Parliament.

The biblical view is that “we must obey God rather than any human authority” (Acts 5:29 NLT). Therefore, He is not a holistic believer in Christ. However, I must admit that it’s a tough job being an evangelical, Pentecostal Christian in a secular, democratic society. I’ll be surprised if he survives the next election.

However, some extreme statements have been made about Morrison’s rise as a PM at the last election:

Pastor Adam F Thompson from Voice of Fire Ministries and Adrian Beale from Everrest Ministries told a congregation of Hope City Church that Morrison’s elevation to power was divinely inspired.

Thompson, who says he can interpret dreams and that supernatural signs and manifestations accompany his ministry, said he’d received a message from God that Morrison and the Coalition must win the election (Hutchens 2018).

Is Thompson prepared to make a signs and wonders prophecy for the next Australian election?

3.  Could this be one of those jobs?

Could this be one of those positions where it would be better not to take such a position, even though Christians are desperately needed in the political process?

Here’s a Christian ethical dilemma:

Do homosexuals go to hell? If a journalist asks this question, how should Scott Morrison reply?

First Corinthians 6:9-11 (NIV) states:

Or do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor men who have sex with men[1] nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.

Here homosexual male acts are included with other wrong-doing such as sexual immorality, idolatry, adultery, theft, greed, being a drunkard, slanderer and swindler. It doesn’t say such sinners will be sent to hell but that they “will not inherit the kingdom of God.”

What is the message in Romans 1 regarding homosexuality? See Rom 1:21-31 (NIV) where male and female homosexuals “received in themselves the due penalty for their error” (v. 27). They “invented ways of doing evil” (v. 29). What is the result of such actions? “They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshipped and served created things rather than the Creator – who is for ever praised. Amen” (v. 25).

There are consequences for doing such evil. They will not “inherit the kingdom of God” and will receive “the penalty for their error.”

  • This is a journalistic question, “Do you believe homosexuals go to hell?” where it would be appropriate for ScoMo to respond: “Go read your Bibles! Particularly read Romans 1 and 1 Corinthians 6. That’s where you’ll find the answers.”

Could this be a job as an MP to avoid? I don’t think so. Instead, ScoMo needs to practise the Matt 10:16 (NLT) principle, “Look, I am sending you out as sheep among wolves. So be as shrewd as snakes and harmless as doves.”

4. Conclusion

In my view, Morrison has failed to integrate his Pentecostal faith with his day-time job of Prime Minister. At least he took a step in not voting in the final vote on gay marriage. But he admitted his perspective, “faith is not about politics.”

To the contrary, all that he does has to do with his relationship with Jesus. His values must be informed by the Acts 5:29 requirement.

5.  Notes

[1] “The words men who have sex with men translate two Greek words that refer to the passive and active participants in homosexual acts.”

6. Works consulted

Bagshaw, E 2019. ‘I support the law of the country’: Debate over sexuality and religion creeps into election campaign. The Sydney Morning Herald (online), 13 May. Available at: https://www.smh.com.au/federal-election-2019/i-support-the-law-of-the-country-debate-over-sexuality-and-religion-creeps-into-election-campaign-20190513-p51mxm.html (Accessed 16 September 2019).

Hutchens, Gareth 2018. “’Darkness’ coming if Scott Morrison not re-elected, Pentecostal leader claims,” The Guardian Australian Edition, 7 September. Available at: https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2018/sep/07/darkness-coming-if-scott-morrison-not-re-elected-pentecostal-leader-claims (Accessed 11 September 2021).

Copyright © 2021 Spencer D. Gear. This document last updated at Date: 11 September 2021.

Prime Minister’s call to prayer is ‘offensive’

At the 2019 Lowy Lecture, Scott Morrison argued that the “distinctiveness of independent nations is preserved within a framework of mutual respect”.

By Spencer Gear PhD

In a speech in Albury NSW, NewsCorp (through AAP) reported on Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s call to prayer. He said . . .

he was praying for rain in drought-affected areas, and he urged those who “believe in the power of prayer” to pray too.

“I pray for that rain everywhere else around the country. And I do pray for that rain. And I’d encourage others who believe in the power of prayer to pray for that rain and to pray for our farmers. Please do that,” he said.

“And everyone else who doesn’t like to do that, you just say, ‘Good on you, guys. You go well.’ Think good thoughts for them, or whatever you do” (Livingston 2018).

Ridiculing the PM’s Christian call to prayer

Angus Livingston, the journalist could not report on this Christian call to prayer to break the drought, without some scoffing words!

blue-corrosion-arrow-small The article’s heading was, ‘Love each other, PM preaches’;

blue-corrosion-arrow-small  ‘Scott Morrison tells Christian conference he was called to do God’s work as prime minister’;

blue-corrosion-arrow-smallScott Morrison is a genuine Christian – of course he’s going to pray’;

blue-corrosion-arrow-smallScott Morrison’s sermon was a carefully planned speech, not a moment of unguarded sincerity.”

This is a subtle attack on some Christian methodology. It is not needed if objectivity is the goal of reporting. It also infers another world view of the journalist and it’s not Christian.

For outrageous statements and ridicule about Morrison’s call to prayer, see the more than 1,000 comments in The Guardian Australia’s, ‘Scott Morrison invokes Menzies and ‘power of prayer’ while on Liberal pilgrimage’ (6 Sep 2018). A sample includes:

design-gold-small ‘Separation of any “religious” crap from our secular state is desperately needed. Too much religious/church influence with these LNP muppets’;

design-gold-small ‘The power of prayer is the power of delusion. It’s worrying that another PM should be that gullible and naive. Religion has no place in government, or in fighting climate change.

design-gold-small ‘Did he say: “Can I get an amen..!”’

design-gold-small ‘the power of PRAYER!?? no No NO! honestly this effing pulpit thumping twit has to go!

The call to prayer is ‘offensive’ because . . .

‘To pray for rain is offensive’: http://www.abc.net.au/religion/why-it-was-offensive-for-the-prime-minister-to-call-for-prayer/10245992

Scripture predicted that would happen

The above brief samples put in a nutshell what Scripture predicted would happen:

‘Most importantly, I want to remind you that in the last days scoffers will come, mocking the truth and following their own desires’ (2 Peter 3:3 NLT).

Jude 1:18 (NLT) gives a similar message: ‘They told you that in the last times there would be scoffers whose purpose in life is to satisfy their ungodly desires.’

I find it unpleasant when stated before my eyes and when experienced as an apologist for the Christian faith. I accept that Scripture proclaims this as coming.

There is a biblical response for all Christians:

You already know these things, dear friends. So be on guard; then you will not be carried away by the errors of these wicked people and lose your own secure footing. 18 Rather, you must grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

All glory to him, both now and forever! Amen (2 Pet 3:17-18 NLT).

In an Australian culture that is so antagonistic to the things of God, Christians need one another for support and encouragement.

First Thess 5:11 (NLT), ‘So encourage each other and build each other up, just as you are already doing’.

John 13:34-35 (NLT), ‘So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other. Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.’

Hebrews 10:23-25 (NLT),

Let us hold tightly without wavering to the hope we affirm, for God can be trusted to keep his promise. Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works. And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near.

What are you doing to encourage and assist your brothers and sisters in Christ? How can you help them tell you their specific needs for prayer and practical support?

I have a husband and wife who voluntarily visit with me for encouragement. They visit weekly or phone every few days. This is a supreme example of encouraging me. My family also phones to check how I’m going in aged care.

Works consulted

Livingston, A 2018. Love each other, PM preaches. News.com.au (from AAP) [online], 6 September. Available at: https://www.news.com.au/finance/work/leaders/love-each-other-pm-preaches/news-story/892b8b738d5a0bd5882c61541829c4d4 (Accessed 11 September 2021).

Copyright © 2021 Spencer D. Gear. This document last updated at Date: 11 September 2021.

When will bigots quit bullying Margaret Court?

(Pastor Margaret Court AO, MBE, OAM: Court at the net in 1970, courtesy Wikipedia)

By Spencer D Gear PhD

This article was first published in the Australian e-journal, On Line Opinion, When will bigots quit bullying Margaret Court? 27 January 2021.

clip_image002

It has hit the fan again in pronouncing Australian grand slam singles’ tennis champion, Margaret Court, “a bigot” for her views on homosexuality and gay marriage. The yelling has come because she has received the highest civilian honour of the level of the Order of Australia, “The Companion of the Order of Australia,” on Australia Day, 26 January 2021.

I’m using bigot according to the customary English definition, as referring to “a person who is utterly intolerant of any differing creed, belief, or opinion” (dictionary.com 2021. s.v. “bigot”). The Oxford English Dictionary (OED) gives a more detailed definition as referring to “a person who is obstinately or unreasonably attached to a belief, opinion, or faction, especially one who is prejudiced against or antagonistic towards a person or people on the basis of their membership of a particular group” (lexico.com 2021. s.v. “bigot”).

How is Margaret Court a bigot?

Victorian Premier, Daniel Andrews, slammed “the decision to honour Mrs Margaret Court, saying he didn’t want to give her “disgraceful, bigoted views any oxygen. “I think calling out bigotry is always important,” he said. He then later reiterated his disapproval of the honour on Twitter: “Grand Slam wins don’t give you some right to spew hatred and create division. Nothing does,” he wrote.

He spoke of the proposed granting of the Order of Australia (OAM) to Margaret Court on 26 January 2021. Why is the winner of 24 grand slam, singles, tennis championships a bigot according to Daniel Andrews? His claim is her stand on the Bible’s view of homosexuality and marriage is the practice of bigotry. He wouldn’t use the language of the Bible’s view but the media are happy to label her a fundamentalist Christian.

Let’s get it straight Premier Daniel Andrews.

Who is being the bigot? Is it Margaret Court who promotes the Bible’s view on sex and the marriage relationship or is it Daniel Andrews who is so enamored with the LGBTQ agenda that he can’t see the trees for the mulga? Does he need their views for votes at the next election?

Let’s get something straight. From the mouth of Margaret Court: She does not discriminate against homosexuals. She ‘loves’ them: “She insists although the bible stands against homosexuality she ‘loves’ and supports gay people through her church.”

The media and Premier Andrews regularly have a vendetta against Margaret, forgetting to tell the people that this was Jesus’ view of the marriage relationship: “God said, ‘That is why a man will leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife. And the two people will become one’” (Matthew 19:5, citing Genesis 2:24).

Jesus did not need to say: “Homosexuals should not marry.” That was contained by inference in his statement that “a man will leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife.” Wives were female in the time of Jesus. Jesus did not support the view that “a man will leave his father and mother and be joined (in sex) with another male.”

Was Jesus also being a bigot against homosexuals like Margaret Court is being accused of? Surely the media and Daniel Andrews would place Jesus also in the category of a bigot!

Bigotry is a serious Australian issue.

Daniel Andrews’ believes “calling out bigotry is always important. I don’t seek to quarrel with people but I’m asked a question and I’ve answered it.” This is one point on which I agree with Mr Andrews. It’s important to identify bigotry. Why can’t Mr Andrews see that his calling Margaret Court a bigot has caused much harm to her personally and the evangelical Christian community – those who take the Bible seriously?

Daniel Andrews 2018.jpg

The Honourable Daniel Andrews in 2018

48th Premier of Victoria
Elections: 2014, 2018 (Image courtesy Wikipedia)

Mr Andrews can’t get a handle on his own bigotry of being “utterly intolerant of any differing creed, belief, or opinion.” His bigotry opposes an eminent Australian sportswoman who promotes a biblical world view on marriage and sexuality. It has been endorsed by the Christian Church for two millennia. But Mr Andrews considers it’s suitable for him to label Margaret Court the bigot and not call himself out as a bigoted, left-wing Labor Premier.

Mr Premier, it’s time for you to own up to your own opposition to Margaret Court’s world view and call your opposition for what it is – bigotry.

I’m a bigot when it comes to going to the doctor when blood is seeping through my urine. I discriminate at elections. I vote for the party whose values most consistently harmonise with my Christian world view. I will not support a party that murders unborn children and calls it a mother’s choice and does not make this a criminal offense.

In Australia, it is now illegal to kill, trap, poison or interfere with wedge-tailed eagles in any way. “In Queensland waters all whales, dolphins, dugong, seals, sea lions, marine turtles and threatened sharks are protected under the provisions of the Nature Conservation Act 1992 (Qld) and relevant subordinate legislation.”

Aren’t these bigoted, discriminatory actions against this wildlife? Of course it is in order to protect these animals. However, it’s not a criminal offence to slaughter unborn children in the womb. When will Australian governments grapple with the legalised murder they endorse?

Since a bigot is one who “is utterly intolerant of any differing creed, belief, or opinion,” by definition that makes Dan Andrews a bigot towards someone who is an outspoken supporter of the Bible’s view. For 2,000 years this has been taught by the Christian church but when Margaret Court dares to be faithful to her God-given commission, she is called out as a bigot by Daniel Andrews.

When will Dan Andrews also get a handle on how discriminatory his words are towards Margaret Court that should be considered persecution or bullying of Mrs Court? 7Sport (23 Jan 2021) had the headline, “Margaret Court says she’s being ‘bullied’ and it’s time for critics to stop.”

“Bullying” refers to a “person who habitually seeks to harm or intimidate those whom they perceive as vulnerable” (OED 2021. s.v. “bully”). The OED gives synonyms of bully as persecutor, oppressor, tyrant, tormentor, browbeater, intimidator, coercer, and subjugator. Margaret Court considers she is being bullied and persecuted. By these definitions, that’s the truth. The media, some tennis players, and a Premier such as Daniel Andrews have bullied, persecuted and browbeaten Margaret Court. It is time for these people to own up to their bullying and persecution tactics and quit doing them immediately.

Let’s black mail Margaret Court!

Two factors need to be noted before I comment on this example. “She” is a transgender person and “she” is an activist who could not tolerate a person who supported a biblical Christian’s view of sexuality and marriage. “She” did not use the language of anything to do with a Christian world view.

How would you react to the title of this article? “Canberra doctor hands back OAM in protest against Margaret Court’s Australia Day honour” (SBS News, 24 January 2021)?

The essence of the story relates to Dr Clara Tuck Meng Soo AO, who was recognised in 2016 for her work as a medical practitioner with LGBTIQ+ and HIV positive communities. The issue that is causing the furore in 2021 is that Dr Soo is handing back her AO because the decision to award Australia’s highest honour to Margaret Court is made to a person who has made comments that are “disparaging of same-sex relationships and transgender people” and that has been “very distressing.” For a photograph of Dr Soo, see: https://www.news.com.au/sport/tennis/australian-open/doctor-hands-back-oam-amid-margaret-court-controversy/news-story/17b1183ec9e0f3ce4cf698b13bdf61f6

Dr Soo continued:

If the honour awards people like Margaret Court, it is sending a message to the community that is okay to make hateful, derogatory comments about disadvantaged segments of the community…. And I felt that if I actually retained my award, I would be condoning that system.

It must be noted that Dr Soo is discriminatory towards Margaret Court’s Christian world view. Dr Soo let us peer into her agenda. She told SBS News, “I may also add that I have spent most of my adult life as a gay man before my gender transition to a woman in 2018. Therefore, have both professional experience as well as lived experience of the communities that Mrs Margaret Court makes these derogatory and hurtful remarks about.”

Leading ABC commentator, Kerry O’Brien, has done the same thing. He has refused to accept the AO medal on Australia Day 2021.

Mr O’Brien had earlier agreed to accept his appointment as an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) in Tuesday’s official honours [26 Jan 2021]. But on Saturday, he wrote to reverse his decision in protest against Mrs Court’s elevation in an awards system that had already recognised her achievements as the winner of 24 Grand Slam singles tennis titles, and her charity work, with an Order of Australia in 2007 (The Sydney Morning Herald, Kerry O’Brien refuses Order of Australia after Margaret Court honour, 25 January 2021).

Getting honest definitions

There are some queer statements made by those who are anti- the homosexual agenda and those who are pro- the Christian perspective. I’m using “queer” in the sense of strange or odd (OED 2021. s.v. “queer”).

This queer definition places homosexuality outside the purview of being able to criticise it and present a different view. That makes the pro-homosexual position one of bigotry or discriminatory.

This queer definition makes Christianity’s biblical views of homosexuality into bigotry when compared with the politically correct perspectives promoting gays as a viable lifestyle supported by the general populace.

ABC News (21 Jan 2021) reported Margaret Court’s views of her statements about homosexuality and marriage:

I am a minister of the Gospel, I have been a pastor for 30 years,” she said.

I teach the bible, what God says in the Bible and I think that is my right and my privilege to be able to bring that forth.

I’m not going to change my opinions and views, and I think it’s very important for freedom of speech that we can say our beliefs….

I think it’s very sad people hold on to that and still want to bully, and I think it’s time to move on.

Pastor Margaret Court said she was “honoured” to learn of her new award for tennis on the court and her work off the court.

I still represent my nation, I pray for my nation, I pray for the LGBT, I pray for the premiers in this nation and the Prime Minister,” she said.

When asked about the hurt her views on homosexuality may cause to LGBT people, Ms Court said she never turned people away.

“I have them come in here, I have them into community services from every different background, I never turn them away,” she said.

“And I was never really pointing the finger at them as an individual. I love all people, I have nothing against people, but I’m just saying what the bible says.”

The 78-year-old said she was disappointed about how her views had been portrayed in the media and feels she was singled out due to her “high profile” (ABC News, 23 January 2021).

Conclusion

The facts are:

(1) The Christian world view and its view on sex, including homosexuality, will always be a country mile from the secular (godless) view. It will be labelled as bigotry or discrimination, without bothering to check that the secular, pro-LGBTIQ view is just as bigoted and discriminatory.

(2) Those who call Margaret Court’s Christian view on marriage to be bigoted and discriminatory are blind to the fact that their opposition to Court’s view presents another – but different – bigoted approach to reality.

(3) Margaret Court promotes Jesus’ vies that marriage is between a man and his female wife in first century culture, customs and biblical Christianity.

How can this be resolved?

  • Get journalists, Premiers, doctors and other people in the media to be more careful with their words. I can’t see that happening.
  • Examine the presuppositions underlying a person’s statements. The likelihood of Daniel Andrews agreeing with Margaret Court’s world view is zero. He needs to admit that up front: “I have an agenda and it is not Christian. In fact, it is anti-Christian and I won’t change my mind.”
  • Margaret Court has already admitted, “I should always be able to say my views biblically, being a pastor and helping people with marriages and family. And I’ll never change those views.”

Remember the safety against religious bigotry in the Australian Constitution:

Section 116

4.2

The starting point in any discussion about religious freedom in Australia is section 116 of the Australian Constitution:

The Commonwealth shall not make any law for establishing any religion, or for imposing any religious observance, or for prohibiting the free exercise of any religion, and no religious test shall be required as a qualification for any office or public trust under the Commonwealth.

4.3

There are four prohibitions on the Commonwealth in this section:

  • establishing any religion
  • imposing any religious observation
  • prohibiting the free exercise of any religion
  • requiring a religious test as a qualification for any office or public trust under the Commonwealth.

Therefore, for Daniel Andrews to prevent Margaret Court from the free exercise of the teachings on Christianity, he violates one of the prohibitions, “the free exercise of any religion,” guaranteed by the Australian Constitution.

Copyright © 2021 Spencer D. Gear. This document last updated at Date: 27 January 2021.

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God, the Bible and Prime Minister Scott Morrison

The Honourable Scott Morrison MP

Scott Morrison 2014.jpg

30th Prime Minister of Australia

Incumbent

By Spencer D Gear PhD

Australia’s Prime Minister, Scott Morrison, and his family attend Horizon Church, Sutherland Shire, NSW, Australia. This is a Pentecostal congregation associated with the Australian Christian Churches, affiliated with the Assemblies of God worldwide.[1]

He allowed the mass media into the worship service to see him in worship.

clip_image002(Photo: Prime Minister Scott Morrison and wife Jenny sing during an Easter Sunday service at his Horizon Church at Sutherland in Sydney, Sunday, April 21, 2019. AAP Image/Mick Tsikas. Courtesy Eternity News, 23 April 2019).[2]

Morrison is Australia’s first Pentecostal Prime Minister.

This article will examine how Morrison’s theology integrates with his politics.

1. Biblical views before he became Prime Minister

When he was treasurer in 2016, he did not support change from traditional to include same-sex marriage (Dziedzic & Norman 2016).

2. What about abortion?

clip_image004(Advocates hold placards during a rally outside the New South Wales Parliament. Source AAP, photo courtesy SBS News)[3]

Even though these comments are by ScoMo as PM, they are in the context of the debate to decriminalise abortion in 2019 in the State of NSW. Channel 7 News reported:

Mr Morrison, who is a Pentecostal Christian, said it was a matter of conscience for state MPs ahead of a delayed vote in the upper house next month.

“It’s not a matter before the commonwealth parliament nor is it one I’m seeking to have brought before the commonwealth parliament,” he told The Sydney Morning Herald….

“I have what I would describe as conservative views on this issue as people know I have on other issues. That’s really all I think I need to say”.[4]

3. Morrison’s view when it becomes law

Now that homosexual marriage has been legalised in Australia, what is Morrison’s view? Notice how he dodges the journalist’s questions:

Scott Morrison says he supports the law of the country but wouldn’t say if his personal opposition to same-sex marriage has changed since it was legalised….

Mr Morrison abstained from voting for marriage equality when it passed the House of Representatives in 2018, and he voted “no” in the national survey.

When asked if he is still personally opposed to same-sex marriage, the prime minister replied: “It’s law. And I’m glad that the change has now been made and people can get on with their lives. That’s what I’m happy about.”

When pressed on whether his opinions have changed, he told reporters in Perth: “I always support the law of the country” (SBS News 2019).[5]

So, he supports Australian law but won’t own up to his current personal beliefs about homosexuality. I wonder, as a Pentecostal Christian, whether he accepts the Bible’s view on the topic. See Romans 1:25-27 and 1 Corinthians 6:9-11.

God’s view is different from Morrison’s. Those who practise homosexuality (male & female) will not inherit the kingdom of God. Whether ScoMo is a PM or an ordinary Christian, he should support the Bible’s view.

4. His views about God

Leigh Sales of ABC’s 7.30 grilled him on his view of God:

“I’m not running for Pope,” Mr Morrison shot back. “I’m running for Prime Minister.

“And the theological questions are not ones that are actually, I think, germane to the political debate in this country.”

“My faith teaches me to love others and God loves everybody and we should be agents for his love in this world which is what I’ve always believed.

“And that’s what my church community does and every church community I’ve been part of, including my parents who served in their local youth organisations for 45 years, every Thursday and Friday school night, my parents were there, running boys and girls brigade for young people in our community.

“They taught me a life of faith and service and that’s what my faith means to me. It means service and caring for others” (news.com.au 2019).[6]

He avoided a splendid opportunity given by Leigh Sales for him to nail his colours to the mast and declare his worship of the Trinitarian Lord God Almighty, no matter the political consequences.

OUTinPerth, an LGBTIQ+ news source, made this observation of ScoMo’s views on homosexuality when a journalist interviewed him in Perth:

Scott Morrison said he was now supportive of same-sex couples being allowed to marry because it had allowed people to “get on with their lives” and because he “always supports the law of the country.”

The PM would not be drawn on whether or not he believed gay people would be sent to hell, an apparent reference to the Israel Folau controversy, saying he keeps his personal religious views private….

The majority of voters in Morrison’s NSW seat of Cook voted in favour of marriage equality, but Scott Morrison abstained from voting when the legislation was before parliament.[7]

5. Religion does not mix with politics

Morrison told a journalist, ‘he doesn’t “mix [his] religion with politics”’ (Karp 2019).

Regarding homosexuals and hell, this was his view:

Prime Minister Scott Morrison has been forced to clarify that he does not believe gay people go to Hell after he earlier did not answer a question about his religious beliefs on gay people.

“No, I do not believe that. It was a desperate, cheap shot from Bill Shorten who is looking to distract attention from his housing tax that will undermine the value of people’s homes,” Mr Morrison said in a statement on Tuesday (SBS News 2019).[8]

However, only a year ago Morrison took a different line in supporting stance on sinners (including homosexuals) going to hell: ‘I think he’s shown a lot of strength of character in just standing up for what he believes in and I think that’s what this country is all about’ (AAP 2018).[9]

Now he denies the Bible’s teaching of what will happen to wrongdoers, including those who commit homosexual acts. Scripture teaches: ‘Those who do wrong will not inherit the Kingdom of God’ (1 Cor 6:9). If they don’t go into God’s kingdom at death, where do they go?

We know this from the Scriptures of the New Testament that after death, unbelievers are:

  • Conscious and in torment (Luke 16:23);
  • ‘Under punishment until the day of judgment’ (2 Peter 2:9);
  • Matt. 25:41, “Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels’”.
  • Mark 9:43-44, “And if your hand causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life crippled than with two hands to go to hell [gehenna], to the unquenchable fire”.
  • Rev. 20:15, “And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire”.

I urge Morrison to tell the truth about what happens at death for sinful homosexuals who have not repented. See my article: Where will unbelievers go at death?

6. Morrison and the Bible

When compares Morrison’s views on morality and a Christian world view, how does his philosophy match up with biblical teaching? From what I’ve written above, alarm bells should be ringing.

Morrison declares his faith in Jesus Christ, invited the TV cameras into his church to see him in worship, but when push comes to shove – in my view – he has failed the test of a Christian worldview that is consistent with Scripture on issues of morality.

Judith Brett (2019) wrote in The Monthly:

Could it be that the heart of Morrison’s Christian faith is not dogma but the desire to be part of a community and the chance for an enthusiastic sing-along? Perhaps, too, he values its detachment from politics. Morrison talks a lot about the “Canberra bubble”. We all need places to go to re-centre ourselves, perhaps politicians more than most.

That could be it for Morrison. He’s happy to be in the sing-along, Pentecostal happy-clapper believers whose faith is not too embedded in Christian doctrine.

From the evidence before us so far in Morrison’s Prime Ministership, he seems to be more interested in appeasing the journalists and not being overt in the content of his Christian faith.

7. Works consulted

Brett, J 2019. Howard’s Heir: On Scott Morrison and his suburban aspirations. The Monthly (online), September. Available at: https://www.themonthly.com.au/issue/2019/september/1567260000/judith-brett/howard-s-heir-scott-morrison-and-his-suburban (Accessed 23 January 2020).

Dziedzic, S & Norman, J 2016. Election 2016: Scott Morrison weighs in on gay marriage after Penny Wong comments. ABC News Brisbane, Qld, 22 June. Available at: https://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-06-22/election-scott-morrison-responds-to-penny-wong-same-sex-marriage/7532372 (Accessed 2 October 2019).

Karp, P 2019. Scott Morrison claims he now backs same-sex marriage – but dodges question on hell. The Guardian Australia (online), 13 May. Available at: https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/may/13/scott-morrison-claims-he-now-backs-same-sex-marriage-but-dodges-question-on-hell (Accessed 2 October 2019).

Payne, K 2019. Inviting the cameras into church. Eternity News (online), 23 April. Available at: https://www.eternitynews.com.au/australia/inviting-the-cameras-into-church/ (Accessed 2 October 2019).

8. Notes


[1] Wikipedia 2019. Horizon Church (online). Available at: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Horizon_Church (Accessed 2 October 2019).

[2] Payne (2019).

[3] SBS News 2019. Scott Morrison a ‘conservative’ on abortion (online), 28 August. Available at: https://www.sbs.com.au/news/scott-morrison-a-conservative-on-abortion (Accessed 2 October 2019).

[4] Ibid.

[5] AAP 2019. Gay marriage is the law: PM Morrison (online), 13 May. Available at: https://www.sbs.com.au/news/gay-marriage-is-the-law-pm-morrison (Accessed 2 October 2019).

[6] Leigh Sales grills Scott Morrison over his faith and plebiscite views in final interview before election (online), 16 May. Available at: https://www.news.com.au/national/federal-election/leigh-sales-grills-scott-morrison-over-his-faith-and-plebiscite-views-in-final-interview-before-election/news-story/0ffb8040eaee81c2b8094e61656cb3db (Accessed 2 October 2019).

[7] PM Scott Morrison says he now backs same-sex marriage (online), 14 May. Available at: https://www.outinperth.com/pm-scott-morrison-says-he-now-backs-same-sex-marriage/ (Accessed 2 October 2019).

[8] ‘No, I do not believe that’: PM clarifies that he does not think gay people go to hell (online), 14 May. Available at: https://www.sbs.com.au/news/no-i-do-not-believe-that-pm-clarifies-that-he-does-not-think-gay-people-go-to-hell (Accessed 2 October 2019).

[9] AAP 2018. Scott Morrison praises Israel Folau’s ‘strong character’ after anti-gay remarks. The Guardian Australia, 12 April. Available at: https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2018/apr/18/scott-morrison-praises-israel-folaus-strong-character-after-anti-gay-remarks (Accessed 2 October 2019).

Copyright © 2020 Spencer D. Gear. This document last updated at Date: 23 January 2020.

Image result for clipart colored single lineImage result for clipart colored single lineImage result for clipart colored single line

Scott Morrison needs to ‘obey God’s message’

2 Oct 2019, 5:35pm

Family sit against a fence holding a sign that reads: "Thanks you Biloela and people around Australia. You give us hope".

ABC News, 2 October 2019, Photo: The family had been living in the central Queensland town of Biloela. (Supplied: @HometoBilo)

By Spencer D Gear PhD

This article was first published in On Line Opinion, 4 September 2019.

What will it take for ScoMo to practise what he preaches? I’ve seen the pictures of him with raised hands in worship in his church on Sunday. I applaud him for worshipping the Lord God Almighty and allowing the mass media cameras to see a demonstration of his faith.

His faith needs more than lifting hands in praise. Australians need to see him practise his Christian faith with Priya, her husband Nadesalingam (Nades), with daughters Kopika, 4, and Tharunicaa, 2.

They have become household names as they challenge the deportation orders to return them to Sri Lanka.

The small regional town of Biloela, Qld, wants them to stay. They have integrated well into that region and Nades has been employed in the meat works.

Morrison resists: ‘I do understand the real feeling about this and the desire for there to be an exception but I know what the consequences are of allowing those exceptions’ (The Sydney Morning Herald, 2 September 2019). Based on the 10 Daily report in September 2019,

(Australian Border Force officials) have told the family they need to learn to adjust to what they’re got on Christmas Island because they’re not going to be brought back to the mainland,” Tamil Refugee Council spokesman Aran Mylvaganam told AAP after speaking to the family….

“Priya, she is saying that she came from the war zone and regardless of how difficult it is, she’s able to put up with it.

“But it’s the children that she’s worried about, who were born here”….

It’s expected to be months before a trial decides whether Tharunicaa’s (the youngest child) bid for a protection visa should be accepted by the Australian government. Her parents and sibling have already been denied refugee status (10 Daily).

This is not about ‘real feeling’ towards this family but about a demonstration of real Christianity by Morrison and his Christian colleagues in government.

Both Morrison and I are evangelical Christians. We have this divine responsibility,

‘Speak up for people who cannot speak for themselves. Help people who are in trouble. Stand up for what you know is right, and judge all people fairly. Protect the rights of the poor and those who need help’ (Proverbs 31:8-9).

This is a special time when ScoMo can act for this family that does not have the political voice, clout or the emotional strength to stand up to the assertions of Peter Dutton that they are not owed protection’ because they ‘are not refugees’.

Morrison claimed ‘they didn’t come to the country in the appropriate way. They have not been found to have an asylum claim’.

Neither would I if I were fleeing persecution. It was reported in the Liverpool City Champion (Narellan, NSW) that ‘Priya told AAP she saw her fiancé and five other men from her village burned alive before she fled. Her entire family now live as refugees in India’.

Prime Minister, it’s time to step up and demonstrate your genuine Christian convictions.

‘Someone might argue, “Some people have faith, and others have good works.” My answer would be that you can’t show me your faith if you don’t do anything. But I will show you my faith by the good I do’ (James 2:18).

Your Bible-based Christian faith will live up to this requirement, ‘’If you help the poor, you are lending to the Lord—and he will repay you’ (Proverbs 19:17).

The two children of asylum seekers Nadesalingam and Priya.

Photo: The two girls were born in Australia but are not Australian citizens. (Supplied: Tamil Refugee Council)

Morrison’s heartless comment was, ‘They can return to Sri Lanka and they can make an application to come to Australia under the same processes as everyone else, anywhere else in the world. And I would hope they do. I would hope they do’ (SMH).

Sending people on meagre wages back to Sri Lanka and hoping they’ll make application to come to Australia as everyone else does is not practising Christianity’s Golden Rule: ‘In everything, do to others what you would want them to do to you’.

Is that how you want to be treated, Mr Morrison? Do you want this harshness inflicted on you? ‘The prime minister says he cannot “in good conscience” allow a Tamil couple and their Australian-born children facing deportation to stay in Australia’.

That’s not a ‘Christian conscience’ based on the Golden Rule’ and God’s care for the needy.

Now Ray Hadley joins with the Honourable Peter Dutton, Minister for Home Affairs, in choofing the family back to Sri Lanka. Why?

“It’s very simple… they lied,” says Ray (on 2GB, 3 September 2019).

“The woman came from Chennai, which is in India. That’s where she set sail from and she’d been living there for an extended period.

“The now-husband had travelled from Sri Lanka to the Middle East on three separate occasions and had returned on three separate occasions”.

ABC News confirmed, ‘He frequently travelled between Sri Lanka, Kuwait and Qatar between 2004 and 2010 for work, during the civil war that ended in 2009’.

Ray: Why was Niya in Chennai? She has made it clear her persecuted family in Sri Lanka had sought asylum in India. The Guardian reported, ‘She initially fled to India, not a refugee convention country and which does not offer protection, with family members’.

Contrary to Ray Hadley’s statement, she was not lying about her circumstances when she left the Indian city of Chennai to seek asylum in Australia. She had fled Sri Lanka’s civil war in 2000 to India, which is not a signatory of the UNHCR (United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees).

The UNHCR stated although India was not party to the 1951 Refugee Convention or its 1967 Protocol, India’s national refugee protection framework ‘continues to grant asylum to a large number of refugees from neighbouring States and respects UNHCR’s mandate for other nationals’.

In 2018, Mr Dutton intervened to prevent two European nannies (au pairs) from being deported from Australia.

‘”It’s quite clear if you look at the ministerial intervention guidelines, this case [of the Tamil family] meets those guidelines more clearly than the two au pair cases in which the minister [Mr Dutton] acted within hours,” said Abul Rizvi, former deputy secretary of the Immigration Department’ (ABC News).

Mr Rizvi was more compassionate towards this family than Morrison, Dutton or Hadley. He told the ABC, ‘We have a clear contest between human decency and appropriate use of the ministerial intervention powers and the minister’s ego’.

Some will be shouting: Keep religion out of politics. That’s impossible to do because all people see life thorough their world views. A world view is like lenses through which we look at reality. Our beliefs about all aspects of life colour our perspective of what happens in the universe.

A Christian world view includes: ‘We must obey God rather than human beings!’ The Scriptures I’ve quoted in this essay demonstrate how the Christian ScoMo, as our national leader, ought to be treating this Tamil family. Instead, his government has put the family through 18 months of trauma, which is hardly a demonstration of Christian kindness.

Glen Campbell’s song comes to mind as I consider what the Coalition government should be doing to the Tamil family,

If you see your brother standing by the road
With a heavy load from the seeds he’s sowed
And if you see your sister falling by the way
Just stop and say, you’re going the wrong way

You got to try a little kindness
Yes show a little kindness
Just shine your light for everyone to see
And if you try a little kindness
Then you’ll overlook the blindness
Of narrow-minded people on the narrow-minded streets

(composers: Curt Sapaugh and Bobby Austin)

This is what we need from the government led by a Christian Prime Minister.

The Tamil family is in our country so we can act christianly towards them. Prime Minister Morrison, you are a Christian. This is how you can demonstrate your Christianity to this family: ‘God has chosen you and made you his holy people. He loves you. So your new life should be like this: Show mercy to others. Be kind, humble, gentle, and patient’ (Colossians 3:12).

Please intervene immediately. What could be more pointed than this call to you Mr Morrison?

‘Do what God’s teaching says; don’t just listen and do nothing. When you only sit and listen, you are fooling yourselves…. But when you look into God’s perfect law that sets people free, pay attention to it. If you do what it says, you will have God’s blessing. Never just listen to his teaching and forget what you heard’ (James 2:22, 25).

Copyright © 2020 Spencer D. Gear. This document last updated at Date: 19 January 2020.

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Have politics changed ScoMo’s Christianity?

‘I’m not running for Pope’

The Honourable Scott Morrison MP

Scott Morrison 2014 (cropped 2).jpg

30th Prime Minister of Australia

By Spencer D Gear PhD

This article was first published by On Line Opinion, 6 November 2019.

What is Prime Minister, Scott Morrison, telling us about his Christianity with these statements?

Flower8 Before becoming PM, he did not support same-sex marriage. What about now?

Flower8 When interviewed by Leigh Sales, he had an opportunity to tell those watching what his views were on the existence and nature of God. He pushed that one aside with a ‘love’ view.

Flower8 He’s a Christian who doesn’t mix religion and politics.

Which God is he serving? He and his family attend Horizon Church, Sutherland Shire, NSW, Australia. This is a Pentecostal congregation associated with the Australian Christian Churches, affiliated with the Assemblies of God worldwide.

He allowed the mass media into the worship service to see him with his wife at Easter Sunday service 2019. ScoMo was praising God with hand raised. This is a common practice in Pentecostal and other evangelical church worship, supported by Bible passages such as Psalm 63:4.

This article will examine how Morrison’s Christianity integrates in public with his politics.

1. Prime Minister’s moral views

When he was treasurer in 2016, he did not support change from traditional to same-sex marriage. This is in agreement with Jesus’ endorsement of heterosexual relationships:

‘‘’Haven’t you read,’ he replied, ‘that at the beginning the Creator “made them male and female,” and said, “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh”? So they are no longer two, but one flesh’ (Matthew 19:4-6).

What about abortion?

The context of the recent abortion debate in NSW was when the PM acknowledged it was a State issue where the MPs and MLCs were granted a conscience vote. He would not make it a Commonwealth issue but acknowledged

I have what I would describe as conservative views on this issue as people know I have on other issues. That’s really all I think I need to say”.

That statement was made after he became PM.

2. When new moral views become law

Now that homosexual marriage has been legalised in Australia, what is Morrison’s view? Notice how he dodges the journalist’s questions:

Mr Morrison abstained from voting for marriage equality when it passed the House of Representatives in 2018, and he voted “no” in the national survey.

When asked if he is still personally opposed to same-sex marriage, the prime minister replied: “It’s law. And I’m glad that the change has now been made and people can get on with their lives. That’s what I’m happy about.”

When pressed on whether his opinions have changed, he told reporters in Perth: “I always support the law of the country“.

So, he supports Australian law but won’t own up to his current personal beliefs about homosexuality. I wonder, as a Pentecostal Christian, whether he accepts the Bible’s view on the topic.

OUTinPerth, an LGBTIQ+ news source, observed ScoMo’s views on homosexuality when a journalist interviewed him in Perth. Now he was supportive of same-sex couples being allowed to ‘get on with their lives’ because he ‘always supports the law of the country’.

ScoMo would not be drawn into a discussion on whether he believed ‘gay people would be sent to hell’ – referring to the Israel Folau controversy.

3. His views on God

Leigh Sales of ABC’s 7.30 grilled him on this topic: ‘I’m not running for Pope,’ Mr Morrison shot back. “I’m running for Prime Minister. And the theological questions are not ones that are actually, I think, germane to the political debate in this country’.

Then he defined faith as loving others, ‘which is what I’ve always believed’. His parents taught by example, serving in local youth organisations, boys and girls brigade for the youth in their community. ‘They taught me a life of faith and service and that’s what my faith means to me. It means service and caring for others’.

Image result for clipart Who Is GodHe had an ideal public opportunity to declare his belief in the Lord God Almighty and Jesus the Saviour who offers salvation to the world. He turned to the ‘loving others’ definition of who God is. In my view he dodged the issues regarding attributes of God for a Christian PM.

When will ScoMo have the courage to lead the country in repentance and prayer for rain? He stated when it rained in Albury: ‘I do pray for that rain. And I’d encourage others who believe in the power of prayer to pray for that rain and to pray for our farmers. Please do that’.

We heard former PM, Malcolm Turnbull, state, ‘We can’t make it rain’. Step up to the mark ScoMo. You know the One who sends and withholds rain: God the Father ‘lets the sun rise for all people, whether they are good or bad. He sends rain to those who do right and to those who do wrong’.

I’m waiting on Morrison’s call to the nation to flood into churches, public halls and local parks to pray earnestly for rain. We can’t force God to send the rain but he has told us to ‘never stop praying’ and wait for his sovereign action in sending the liquid gold to the parched regions of the nation.

It is time for this Christian PM to tell us who sends the rain. This view espoused by many that ‘we can’t make it rain’ is true but it avoids announcing who sends rain and how we should respond to the drought.

4. Religion does not mix with politics

Morrison told a journalist, ‘he doesn’t “mix [his] religion with politics”’.

Regarding homosexuals and hell, he clarified his view before the 2019 election: No, I do not believe that’, he told SBS News.

Image result for clipart religion and politicsHowever, only a year prior he supported Israel Folau’s ‘strength of character in standing up for what he believes in and I think that’s what this country is all about’. Folau believes sinners go to hell. Does he support Folau’s ‘strength of character’ without affirming Folau’s moral and theological beliefs?

Does he believe all sinners go to hell? I have not found his making a clear public statement about this.

However, The Horizon Church where he and his family attend, stated in its Doctrinal Basis (for Australian Christian Churches), ‘We believe in the everlasting punishment of the wicked (in the sense of eternal torment) who wilfully reject and despise the love of God manifested in the great sacrifice of his only Son on the cross for their salvation’ (Bible references provided).

If ScoMo is a member of that Church he would have to accept this teaching.

5. Which Bible does ScoMo read?

Twelve months ago when he was treasurer, Morrison’s views on morality and a Christian world view do not match his philosophy with biblical teaching today. From what I’ve written above, alarm bells should be ringing of conflicts between his beliefs and actions.

Related imageThe first alarm concerns how a person’s world view affects life in the real world, including politics. All of us have a world view, a lens through which we look and interpret all of life.

The global warming world view uses a certain set of lenses. Left wing and right wing agitators also use different lenses. The Christian and atheistic world views see life through the theistic God’s existence (Christian) and the lack of evidence for God (atheism).

For ScoMo to state he doesn’t ‘mix religion with politics’, he violates a Christian fundamental belief: ‘And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him’ (Colossians 3:17).

So, ScoMo, as a biblical Christian, should live by the teaching: ‘I must mix my Christianity with political thinking and actions. By this I give thanks to God the Father through Jesus’.

Related imageA second alarm deals with ScoMo’s acceptance of moral issues after they become law, e.g. homosexual marriage and abortion. The biblical view is that promoted by Peter and the apostles when confronted with the Jewish high council (the Sanhedrin).

The high priest stated: ‘We gave you strict orders not to teach in this name. Look, you have filled Jerusalem with your teaching, and you intend to bring this man’s blood on us! But Peter and the apostles replied, “We must obey God rather than people” (Acts 5:28-29).

Should that be ScoMo’s approach to legislation that clashes with Scripture?

6. Bible, homosexuality and abortion

First Corinthians 6:9-11 is clear. Wrong doers or the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God. These include those who indulge in sexual sin, worship idols, commit adultery, are male prostitutes, practise homosexuality, are thieves, greedy, drunkards, abusive, or cheat people.

If they don’t inherit the kingdom of God, where do they go at death? Jesus said regarding the last judgment: ‘They [the unrighteous] will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous will go into eternal life’ (Matthew 25:46).

Therefore, Izzy scored the try across the biblical line while ScoMo fumbled the biblical material and presented a view that is foreign to the text.

https://i0.wp.com/www.campaignlifecoalition.com/shared/skins/default/images/abortionphotos/abortedbaby22wks.jpg?resize=317%2C231&ssl=1(aborted 22 weeks, Campaign Life Coalition)

As for God’s view on abortion, is it more than ScoMo’s ‘conservative’ view? Is the unborn a living human being (from God’s perspective) whose right to live should be preserved? Or is the unborn child a lump of cells of no more value than a chicken fillet?

Scripture teaches that human life exists in the womb: ‘You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb’ (Psalm 139:13).

In the New Testament (NT), when Mary and Elizabeth met, both being pregnant, Elizabeth’s baby (John the Baptist) ‘leaped in her womb’ in salutation of Mary’s baby, Jesus.  Of special significance in Luke’s account is that he used the same word brephos (NT Greek) for an unborn child (1:41, 44), the new-born baby (2:12, 16) and the little ones brought to Jesus to bless (18:15).

Medical science agrees. Every human life begins at conception. The approximately 65,000 murdered in Australian abortions every year are pre-born children – human beings.

In 1970, in the midst of the United States’ abortion debate (it was legalised in 1973), the editors of the journal California Medicine (the official journal of the California Medical Association), noticed ‘a curious avoidance of thescientific fact, which everyone really knows, that human life begins at conception and is continuous whether intra or extrauterine until death’.

Therefore, to kill an unborn infant is to murder a human being.

7. Conclusion

ScoMo’s world view is not driven by biblical Christianity’s, ‘We must obey God rather than human beings’. When he reneges on what the Bible says about the destiny of all evil doers, including homosexuals, he has made a trade off to weaken what the Bible states.

To affirm that he is not running for Pope and serves a God of love avoids fuller explanation of who God is: All-powerful, one who knows all things, has wrath as well as love; he offers salvation to all who believe; we can know him truly, and he is eternal.

Could you imagine ScoMo taking a stand on the 7.30 program like this? ‘As a Christian who believes in the inspiration of the Bible, I endorse the content of Israel Folau’s Instagram post. As a Christian PM, everything I say and do will be under the scrutiny of the Bible’.

I appreciate that that kind of comment would lose some votes at the next election – while gaining others – and could be used by the opposition to denigrate his beliefs in a multicultural Australia. Nevertheless, the Australian Constitution has its foundation in the five states that joined together, ‘humbly relying on the blessing of Almighty God’.

All Christians are faced with the ScoMo challenge: ‘Everything you say and everything you do should be done for Jesus your Lord’. Imagine the PM saying it like that to Leigh Sales!

In my view, the public life of politics has weakened ScoMo’s overt Christianity.

ScoMo what will it be? Spiritual correctness or political correctness? Your future will depend on it.

Copyright © 2019 Spencer D. Gear. This document last updated at Date: 03 November 2019.

Australia - Free Clipart for Kids  Teachers

Dams needed. Who sends the rain?

Deism damns how to fill dams

Tractor on drought-ravaged farm in Guyra, NSW. (Photo: Guyra’s water reserves dried up earlier this year. (ABC News: Caitlyn Gribbin)

By Spencer D Gear PhD

A friend copied me into his email to the Federal Treasurer of Australia, the Hon. Josh Frydenberg:[1]

Thankyou for your newsletter and for the concern you show for Dino the Stanthorpe Apple Grower suffering from the effects of drought. This concern is admirable but without action it is as meaningless as the Green’s political party concern.

Dino is suffering because of a failure to supply Water. It is the responsibility of Government to ensure that sufficient water is stored to meet domestic, industrial, irrigation and environmental needs.

Unfortunately we have to go back to the 1960’s Ord scheme to find evidence of Federal Government active intervention to supply water on a large scale. Tony Abbott talked a lot. ALP is only concerned with their voter base which no longer includes farmers.

Tino is suffering because past governments have failed to build dams not because it is not raining.

The 1940’s and 1950’s Bradfield scheme if implemented would have solved the problem. Vince Gair was advocating this scheme in 1950’s and I personally heard Dr. Colin Clark praise the scheme.

As an absolute minimum to show true support for Dino please organise for a full investigation into the scheme with an undertaking to build if viable.

My reply was: There’s no point in building dams unless the Lord God Almighty sends the rain.
We should have people in droves, who believe in the power of prayer, flooding our churches to pray for rain. Of course we need national repentance. See: Australia is in deep trouble: Droughts, floods and fires

His comeback was:

I am not on the same wavelength as Spencer’s response to me.

I personally do not think God interferes with the running of his creation and I see our lack of rain as a natural part of that creation. Our failure to store it however is a failure by humans and has nothing to do with sin other than greed when allocating government resources.[2]

1. Which theology did he promote?

His was the God who created the world and left it running and did not involve himself in the creation any longer. The problem is a human one where not enough dams have been built and water stored.

He provided zero explanation for the lack of rain, except it was a natural part of what happens in our world.

Is this the God of the Bible in action or has he gone to sleep.

1.1 Deism damns how to fill dams

Who or what sends the rain so that we have water to store in dams?

Image result for symbol Deism public domainYours is the God of Deism. My understanding of creation is one where ‘God, the blessed and only Ruler, the King of kings and Lord of lords’ sustains the universe (1 Timothy 6:15). God the Son sustains ‘all things by his powerful word’ (Hebrews 1:3).

Why does the world continue to exist? It is not because he set it running and then doesn’t interfere. Rather, Scripture is clear: ‘For in him [Christ] all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together‘ (Colossians 1:16-17).

The Bible does not support your view that God does not interfere with the running of creation. Instead, God is active in holding all things together in creation, including the sending and withholding of rain.

For the Israelites under the Old Covenant, Amos 4:7 states: ‘I also withheld rain from you when the harvest was still three months away. I sent rain on one town, but withheld it from another. One field had rain; another had none and dried up’.

God is not the weak absentee landlord. He continues to be active in his creation. He is the God of action and not inaction when it comes to sending the rain: ‘He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous’ (Matthew 5:45).

1.2 Atrocious reasoning

What do you think his come back would be to my exposure of his Deism? It was simple: ‘Thank you for your reply. I have removed you from my e-mail contacts. You should get nothing from me from now on’.[3]

Instead of dealing with the negatives and positives of his Deist beliefs, he resorted to removing me from his email list.

I thoughtfully replied:

So you are unprepared to deal with your unbiblical view of God. Instead of dealing with the issues with your Deism, you removed me from your mailing list. You have used an Appeal to Invincible Ignorance Logical Fallacy. It involves a situation where …

the person in question (you) simply refuses to believe the argument, ignoring any evidence given. It is not so much a fallacious tactic in argument as it is a refusal to argue in the proper sense of the word, the method instead being to make assertions with no consideration of objections.

Deleting me from your email list demonstrated your use of this fallacy.
I hope that one day you’ll be able to man up to a critique of your Deism and see its distance from Christianity.

2. What are the beliefs of Deism?[4]

God made the world and does not interrupt its continuing with supernatural events. Thus, the statement by my friend, ‘I personally do not think God interferes with the running of his creation and I see our lack of rain as a natural part of that creation’.

There are several forms of deism. Some of their basic beliefs include (Geisler 1999:190):

clip_image002God is not interested in the world he created.

clip_image002[1]A second brand regards God as having a continuing interest in the universe but is not interested in whether people act morally or not.

clip_image003A third view maintains God governs the universe and is interested in the moral actions of people, but nothing happens after death.

clip_image003[1]Fourthly, it understands God regulates the world, expects obedience to his moral law in nature with rewards and punishments for the wicked.

Deists object to orthodox Christianity over their views on:

  • God (the non-Trinitarian God of Deism);
  • Origin of the universe;
  • Relation of God to the universe;
  • Miracles;
  • Ethics;
  • Human destiny;
  • History.

B A Robinson (1999-2018) of Religious Tolerance summarised the beliefs of Deism. They include:

clip_image005It’s a natural religion that believes in God’s existence, purely on rational grounds.

clip_image006It does not rely on revealed religion, religious authority or any holy texts.

clip_image005[1]So Deism is quite different from Judaism, Christianity and Islam because these 3 religions are ‘based on revelations that Jews, Christians and Muslims believe mostly came from God to prophet(s) who then taught it to humans’.

clip_image005[2] It’s a ‘bottom-up’ faith, which means it was created by humans about God. Deists regard revealed religions as ‘top-down’ for the reason ‘their followers believe that they were created by God and delivered to humans’.

clip_image005[3]Faiths that are the opposite of Deism are Atheism because it does not believe in the existence of God or gods. Another opposite is Theism which is ‘seen in the beliefs of most Theists who conceive of God as a deity who is all-present, all-powerful, all-loving, all-knowing and has a personal interest and involvement in every human on Earth’. Robinson explained:

Many Deists reason that everything that exists has had a creator — from a wristwatch, to a television set, to the Internet itself. Thus it is logical that the universe itself must have been created by God:

2.1 Positive contributions of Deists

With such a low view of God and a perspective that is contrary to the Scriptures, how could I contemplate any positive benefits by Deists? Geisler (1999:191) states these three:

  • The importance of reason in considering matters of faith (cf. Isa 1:18; Acts 17:17; 1 Pet 3:15); claims made about miracles and supernatural relation need verification.
  • The existence of God is reflected in a Designer of the cosmos.
  • Exposing religious deception and superstition.

2.2 Critique of Deism

What are the major objections to this view of God and the universe?

2.2.1 Admit creation but refuse to accept lesser miracles

A being who could [as deists believe] bring the universe into existence from nothing could certainly perform lesser miracles if He chose to do so. A God who created water could part it or make it possible for a person to walk on it. The immediate multiplication of loaves of bread and fish would be no problem to a God who created matter and life in the first place. A virgin birth or even a physical resurrection from the dead would be minor miracles in comparison to the miracle of creating the universe from nothing [as deists believe]. It seems self-defeating to admit a great miracle like creation and then to deny the possibility of lesser miracles (Geisler 1999:191).

2.2.2 Scientists and natural law

Scientists’ views on natural law have moved past the Deists’ understandings. The Deist view is outdated as scientists regard the natural law as general today and not necessarily universal. Natural laws indicate how nature generally behaves but it is not fixated on that response.

If God created the universe for the good of his creatures, it seems that he would miraculously intervene in their lives if their good depended on it. Surely their all-good Creator would not abandon his creation. Instead it would seem that such a God would continue to exercise the love and concern for his creatures that prompted him to create them to begin with, even if it meant providing care through miraculous means (Geisler 1999:191).

The possibility of supernatural revelation through Scripture cannot be excluded if one admits to the possibility of miracles.

C S Lewis wrote: ‘A naturalistic Christianity leaves out all that is specifically Christian’ (Lewis 1947/2012:108).

2.2.3 Abuse is no excuse

Because some religious people have abused religious beliefs on miracles and other Christian beliefs does not make it legitimate to reject miracles. One bad tomato or even a bad bag of tomatoes does not stop people from eating tomatoes.

There have been abuses in science. See: Uses and Abuses of Tuskegee. That should not and has not prevented our engagement with the scientific disciplines.

An all-powerful, all-knowing God could conceivably overcome these problems. At least such problems should not rule out the possibility that God has revealed himself, either verbally or in written form. Again, the evidence should first be consulted….

The deists’ case against Christianity and the Bible has been found wanting…. What anti-supernaturalist has adequately answered such Christian theists as J. Gresham Machen, and C. S. Lewis?… They have built an extensive and solid case from science, philosophy, and logic against the belief that miracle stories in the Bible are necessarily mythical….

For example, [Thomas] Paine’s[5] belief that most of the books of the Bible were written by people other than the ones who claimed to write them and written very late is still proclaimed as indisputable fact by many critics. But there is not one credible shred of evidence that has not been rejected for good reason by archaeologists and biblical scholars. More than 25,000 finds have confirmed the picture of the ancient world given in the Bible …. There is sufficient evidence to support the authorship claims and early dates for most biblical books (Geisler 1999:192).

3. Conclusion

I found it interesting to have interaction with a friend whose belief is that of Deism. When I exposed that, he cut off communication with me.

In the above, I’ve discussed the positives and negatives of Deism when compared with biblical Christianity.

The foundation of a Deist world view is not based on Scripture and the God who intervenes with our world.

My view is that my friend’s statement summarises the despair of a Deist world view: ‘I personally do not think God interferes with the running of his creation and I see our lack of rain as a natural part of that creation’.

4. Notes

[1] It was dated 6 October 2019. Typographical errors have been corrected.

[2] Received 15 October 2019. Typographical errors were corrected.

[3] Email received 15 October 2019.

[4] Based on Geisler (1999:189-192).

[5] See Thomas Paine details at Thomas Paine 2019. Biography (online). Available at: https://www.biography.com/scholar/thomas-paine (Accessed 16 October 2019).

5.  Works consulted

Geisler, N L 1999. Baker Encyclopedia of Christian Apologetics. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Books.

Lewis, C S 1947/2012. Miracles: Do They Really Happen? London: William Collins (a division of Harper Collins).

Robinson, B A 1999-2018. Deism: A world religion. Religious Tolerance (online). Available at: http://www.religioustolerance.org/deism.htm (Accessed 15 October 2019).

Copyright © 2019 Spencer D. Gear. This document last updated at Date: 19 October 2019.

clip_image011clip_image011

Cane toads and religious freedom

A prominent animal welfare group wants people to stop clubbing cane toads.

(image courtesy Katherine Times)

By Campbell Markham[1]

I consider this is the finest Christian assessment I’ve read of Australia’s draft Religious Discrimination Bills 2019: Religious Freedom Laws and Cane Toads. See Religious Freedom Bills to read a copy of the 2019 draft bills in Australia.

It is written by Campbell Markham, minister of Cornerstone Presbyterian Church, Hobart, Tas. who knows from personal experience what it is like to be the victim of ‘existing anti-discrimination action’.

He had to ‘face Tasmania’s Anti-Discrimination Commission over online blogs referring to the gay lifestyle as “distressingly dangerous” and having “appalling health risks”‘. After conciliation, the anti-discrimination case was dropped.

If you were encouraged by Campbell Markham’s analysis of the draft Religious Discrimination Bill 2019, why don’t you contact him with a word or two of encouragement? Contact: [email protected]

Notes

[1] This information was copied from Campbell Markham’s blog by Spencer D Gear. His blog may be located at: http://campbellmarkham1970.blogspot.com/ (Accessed 13 October 2019).

Copyright © 2019 Spencer D. Gear. This document last updated at Date:13 October 2019.

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Scott Morrison needs to ‘obey God’s message’

By Spencer D Gear PhD

This article was first published in On Line Opinion, an Australian e-journal, 4 September 2019)

What will it take for ScoMo, the nick-name for Australia’s Prime Minister, to practise what he preaches? I’ve seen the pictures of him with raised hands in worship in his church on Sunday. I applaud him for worshipping the Lord God Almighty and allowing the mass media cameras to see a demonstration of his faith.

clip_image002(Prime Minister Scott Morrison and wife Jenny sing during an Easter Sunday service at his Horizon Church at Sutherland in Sydney, Sunday, April 21, 2019.

AAP Image/Mick Tsikas. Courtesy Eternity, 23 April 2019).[1]

His faith needs more than lifting hands in praise. Australians need to see him practise his Christian faith with Priya, her husband Nadesalingam (Nades), with daughters Kopika, 4, and Tharunicaa, 2.

They have become household names as they challenge the deportation orders to return them to Sri Lanka.

The small regional town of Biloela, Qld, wants them to stay. They have integrated well into that region and Nades has been employed in the meat works.

Morrison resists: ‘I do understand the real feeling about this and the desire for there to be an exception but I know what the consequences are of allowing those exceptions’ (The Sydney Morning Herald, 2 September 2019).

This is not about ‘real feeling’ towards this family but about a demonstration of real Christianity by Morrison and his Christian colleagues in government.

Both Morrison and I are evangelical Christians. We have this divine responsibility,

‘Speak up for people who cannot speak for themselves. Help people who are in trouble. Stand up for what you know is right, and judge all people fairly. Protect the rights of the poor and those who need help’ (Proverbs 31:8-9).

This is a special time when ScoMo can act for this family that does not have the political voice, clout or the emotional strength to stand up to the assertions of Peter Dutton that they are ‘not owed protection’ because they ‘are not refugees.

Morrison claimed ‘they didn’t come to the country in the appropriate way. They have not been found to have an asylum claim’.

Neither would I if I were fleeing persecution. It was reported in the Liverpool City Champion (Narellan, NSW) that ‘Priya told AAP she saw her fiancé and five other men from her village burned alive before she fled. Her entire family now live as refugees in India’.

clip_image004(Photo Nadesalingam [Nades] and Priya with their two children. Supplied: Tamil Refugee Council, courtesy ABC News Capricornia/Brisbane).

Prime Minister, it’s time to step up and demonstrate your genuine Christian convictions.

‘Someone might argue, “Some people have faith, and others have good works.” My answer would be that you can’t show me your faith if you don’t do anything. But I will show you my faith by the good I do’ (James 2:18 ERV).

Your Bible-based Christian faith will live up to this requirement, ‘If you help the poor, you are lending to the Lord-and he will repay you’ (Proverbs 19:17 NLT).

Morrison’s heartless comment was, ‘They can return to Sri Lanka and they can make an application to come to Australia under the same processes as everyone else, anywhere else in the world. And I would hope they do. I would hope they do’ (SMH).

Sending people on meagre wages back to Sri Lanka and hoping they’ll make application to come to Australia as everyone else does is not practising Christianity’s Golden Rule: ‘In everything, do to others what you would want them to do to you’.

Is that how you want to be treated, Mr Morrison? Do you want this harshness inflicted on you? ‘The prime minister says he cannot “in good conscience” allow a Tamil couple and their Australian-born children facing deportation to stay in Australia’.

That’s not a ‘Christian conscience’ based on the Golden Rule’ and God’s care for the needy.

Now Ray Hadley joins with the Honourable Peter Dutton, Minister for Home Affairs, in choofing the family back to Sri Lanka. Why?

“It’s very simple… they lied,” says Ray (on 2GB, 3 September 2019).

“The woman came from Chennai, which is in India. That’s where she set sail from and she’d been living there for an extended period.

“The now-husband had travelled from Sri Lanka to the Middle East on three separate occasions and had returned on three separate occasions”.

ABC News confirmed, ‘He frequently travelled between Sri Lanka, Kuwait and Qatar between 2004 and 2010 for work, during the civil war that ended in 2009’.

Ray: Why was Niya in Chennai? She has made it clear her persecuted family in Sri Lanka had sought asylum in India. The Guardian reported, ‘She initially fled to India, not a refugee convention country and which does not offer protection, with family members’.

Contrary to Ray Hadley’s statement, she was not lying about her circumstances when she left the Indian city of Chennai to seek asylum in Australia. She had fled Sri Lanka’s civil war in 2000 to India, which is not a signatory of the UNHCR (United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees).

The UNHCR stated although India was not party to the 1951 Refugee Convention or its 1967 Protocol, India’s national refugee protection framework ‘continues to grant asylum to a large number of refugees from neighbouring States and respects UNHCR’s mandate for other nationals’.

In 2018, Mr Dutton intervened to prevent two European nannies (au pairs) from being deported from Australia.

‘”It’s quite clear if you look at the ministerial intervention guidelines, this case [of the Tamil family] meets those guidelines more clearly than the two au pair cases in which the minister [Mr Dutton] acted within hours,” said Abul Rizvi, former deputy secretary of the Immigration Department’ (ABC News).

Mr Rizvi was more compassionate towards this family than Morrison, Dutton or Hadley. He told the ABC, ‘We have a clear contest between human decency and appropriate use of the ministerial intervention powers and the minister’s ego’.

Some will be shouting: Keep religion out of politics. That’s impossible to do because all people see life thorough their world views. A world view is like lenses through which we look at reality. Our beliefs about all aspects of life colour our perspective of what happens in the universe.

A Christian world view includes: ‘We must obey God rather than human beings!’ The Scriptures I’ve quoted in this essay demonstrate how the Christian ScoMo, as our national leader, ought to be treating this Tamil family. Instead, his government has put the family through 18 months of trauma, which is hardly a demonstration of Christian kindness.

clip_image006(Glen Campbell photo courtesy Cranach)

Glen Campbell’s song comes to mind as I consider what the Coalition government should be doing to the Tamil family,

If you see your brother standing by the road
With a heavy load from the seeds he’s sowed
And if you see your sister falling by the way
Just stop and say, you’re going the wrong way

You got to try a little kindness
Yes show a little kindness
Just shine your light for everyone to see
And if you try a little kindness
Then you’ll overlook the blindness
Of narrow-minded people on the narrow-minded streets

(composers: Curt Sapaugh and Bobby Austin)

This is what we need from the government led by a Christian Prime Minister.

The Tamil family is in our country so we can act christianly towards them. Prime Minister Morrison, you are a Christian. This is how you can demonstrate your Christianity to this family: ‘God has chosen you and made you his holy people. He loves you. So your new life should be like this: Show mercy to others. Be kind, humble, gentle, and patient’ (Colossians 3:12).

Please intervene immediately. What could be more pointed than this call to you Mr Morrison?

‘Do what God’s teaching says; don’t just listen and do nothing. When you only sit and listen, you are fooling yourselves…. But when you look into God’s perfect law that sets people free, pay attention to it. If you do what it says, you will have God’s blessing. Never just listen to his teaching and forget what you heard’ (James 2:22, 25 ERV).

Notes

[1] Kayley Payne 2019. Inviting the cameras into church. Eternity (online), 23 April. Available at: https://www.eternitynews.com.au/australia/inviting-the-cameras-into-church/ (Accessed 4 September 2019).

Copyright © 2019 Spencer D. Gear. This document last updated at Date: 04 September 2019.

Family sit against a fence holding a sign that reads: "Thanks you Biloela and people around Australia. You give us hope". People hold photos of the Tamil family from Biloela at a rally. The two children of asylum seekers Nadesalingam and Priya.