SUMMARY: EDITORIAL COMMENT: POLITICS AND THE CHRISTIAN CHURCH
From time to time the old bogey surfaces as to the biblical legitimacy and extent of the involvement of Christians and of the Christian church in politics.
CWM would like to explore this issue pro and con.
Some think our Lords statements about our being salt and light is supportive while others think the statement about His Kingdom being not of this world is prohibitive.
There have been good and bad experiences throughout history.
One politician who formed his own Christian party in Australia is Fred Nile, whom I met way back in 1979 shortly after I and my family came from UK.
I took the rather bold step at that time to invite him, before he had become a member of parliament, to speak at the AoG Katoomba Christian Fellowship, of which I was pastor, on the subject of moral action in the face of the spread of pornography and immoral teaching in our schools.
Fred, as he is affectionately known in Australia, has done a huge job and has remained faithful and loyal to his calling throughout his almost 25 years in the political arena.
In publishing this article our plan is to open the way for interaction. Let us know by way of a letter to the editor what you think.
We hope to publish two slightly different Christian viewpoints on this topic in the next CETF, God willing so as to air the subject.
By FRED NILE MLC An updated version of what was written by the Hon Fred Nile in 2003
DO NOT pastor a church but rather conduct a Christian ministry in Parliament House, NSW.
We have meetings there for men, women, pastors, and the public generally, including gospel singing by visiting soloists, without any complaints from my parliamentary colleagues.
Some in the major parties are Christians, who are obliged, on occasion, by their parties to vote against their conscience.
Our policy in the Christian Democratic Party is the opposite of this: each parliamentarian must vote according to his/her conscience as guided by the Holy Spirit.
In September 2006, God willing I shall celebrate the 25th anniversary of my election to the NSW parliament on the 19th of September 1981
.Some critics said then: Fred Nile wont last. Well, they are dead and buried and I am now the longest serving member of the Legislative Council to God be the glory!
Now as Father of the House there is no more ridicule nor jokes spoken against me; rather I am treated with respect, having been elected as Deputy President a few years ago.
As such, I am rostered on duty on certain days and can thus challenge the unruly behaviour of even government ministers.
God has a sense of humour!
There are two special chairs in the Council Chamber one reserved for the Queen on the few occasions that she visits, and the other for the President.
When I occupy this chair, I remember back to 1981 when I was fi rst elected.
I couldnt sit with either the government or the opposition. So the parliamentary carpenters built a special chair for me in the middle of the chamber.
This, in fact, had room for two people, which was providential, because seven years later my wife Elaine was elected, and we sat together for 15 years as probably the only husband and wife team in the same government chamber anywhere in the world!
(Elaine retired in 2003 due to ill health, and now devotes her time to our several grandchildren). We both together represented the family and marriage as Gods perpetual plan, by our words and deeds (e.g. our presence).
We fought many battles during that time, since I have a special burden for our nation. One obtains an overview of our country (not just NSW) after 24 years in parliament.
Every one of us as Christians should rise up to defend our country to retain it as a Christian nation.
I dont mean by that now or in the future every Australian is or will be a Christian, but that everything good in our history, conventions and culture arises out of the Christian faith: our national fl ag is composed of 4 Christian crosses (saints Patrick, Andrew & George, & the Southern Cross), all our parliaments begin each day with prayer to Almighty God.
Theres a move in the Victorian parliament (as there was recently, unsuccessfully praise God, in the NSW Upper House) to abolish the prayer, or add a Muslim prayer.
But this is NOT a Muslim land.
There is a small minority of Muslims here, but in the last census about 70% of Australias inhabitants claimed to be Christians.
These people support Christian values and they do not want this to be a Muslim nation, when they see what is happening in the Middle East, what occurred on September 11, in Bali, and in Muslim lands. It is not impossible if Christians cease praying and opposing evil, that Australia could become a pagan or a Muslim nation.
I have recently been in a debate with the Uniting Church. In 1977 when the Uniting Church started, I was serving with the Wesley Central Methodist Mission, Sydney.
Since its leaders later became theologically liberal, I was often threatened with excommunication because I believed the Bible!
Sometimes in parliament we were debating the subject of having a heroin-injecting gallery in Kings Cross, including the provision of free needles for addicts.
In fact we need a drug rehabilitation centre in Kings Cross).
When I opposed this move, my parliamentary colleagues reminded me that the Uniting Church hierarchy supported it!
I fi nally had to resign from the Uniting Church over its support for the ordination of homosexual ministers.
When I made the public announcement, with Bible in hand, not even the ABC argued against me! They could see the logic of my stand.
Homosexuals can be set free; yet the Uniting Church wants to ordain these people who are still in bondage!
The Episcopalian Church in the USA has consecrated a homosexual bishop, who has left his wife and children to live with a male partner. In another case in the UK an Anglican minister moved in with a curate, training to be a priest; but thank God for Archbishop Peter Jensons stand against such immorality.
Now a split is threatened in the worldwide Anglican Communion, especially from the African and Asian missionary churches, which are faithful to the Bible. Anglican Evangelicals spoke so strongly that the UK homosexual candidate for bishop withdrew but remained a canon. Canada is making a similar move.
The devil is attacking the church from both outside and inside.
I cant believe that these men were ever true Christians; rather they are false prophets, as the Bible warns us.
Revelation chapter 3 describes exactly what is happening today: the Laodicean church was neither hot nor cold. Jesus said that He would spew it out of His mouth i.e. it made Jesus sick! Archbishop Peter Carnley, in Perth, says that in accepting homosexuals into the church we are being obedient to Jesus Christ!
This may trick some naïve Christians, but it has nothing to do with Jesus Christ.
Thank God for the hot churches all over the land, in contrast to those that are lukewarm or cold!
As previously mentioned, there was a battle
in our NSW Legislative Council.
The Greens moved a motion to ban our opening prayers.
I believe its right to start our deliberations with prayer.
This happens in all parliaments in Australia, Canada, UK and USA.
The practice began in the fi rst English parliament in 1659, when a chaplain led in prayer, and it has continued ever since. In the USA there is extempore prayer with a chaplain in each Federal house, and even a chapel.
The US has a Christian heritage starting with the Mayfl ower pilgrims, yet the Supreme Court has banned (I believe, illegally) prayer and Bible reading in state schools. An atheist, Madalyn Murray OHare, initiated this move. She used her 16 year-old son William as a plaintiff in all the court battles up to the Supreme Court. The son grew up to become a drug addict and a communist. His life was a mess.
Strangely, he found an old Bible in a porn bookshop, took it home to read, and was converted! William Murray visited Australia some years ago for an evangelistic campaign in the capital cities.
Obviously, I opposed the Greens motion, and praise God, in a house of 42 members, the motion was lost 30 against, 7 in favour.
The Greens remain outside the Chamber during prayers (and this is their right) but they want to impose their views on the majority.
One of the Greens members worships the earth as mother goddess I serve the Lord God Almighty, Creator of heaven and earth, and I respect the environment. God was the fi rst greenie, but we dont worship His creation.
There are current moves to prevent local Councils from displaying nativity scenes at Christmas (in deference to other faith systems). A Muslim recently objected to the public playing of Christmas carols where, for example, Jesus was presented as the Son of God. However, we should oppose this tendency, and encourage those Councils, which display or promote such scenes e.g. Penrith Council supports Christmas was on a display sign recently.
The Australian Constitution proclaims Australia as a Christian country humbly relying on the blessing of Almighty God
This eventuated because of the pressure of church leaders in the late 19th century as the concept of the Commonwealth was being discussed.
I believe we should cease calling homosexuality a gay lifestyle. That word makes it sound attractive; instead it is a sad bondage.
Obscene and blasphemous fl oats with half-naked men cavorting around are displayed during the Sydney Mardi Gras, with attacks on Roman Catholic archbishop George Pells stance (Go to hell, Pell!)
Some consider the Sydney Mardi Gras, the highlight of the tourist year.
We mount a Christian vigil during this event, and see many Asian tourists present, many of them there unknowingly, I believe.
Thank God that the Mardi Gras is going bankrupt, and it might be Gods way of terminating it!
The Greens want to legalize euthanasia, and abortion clinics openly ply their trade without hindrance.
Some well meaning people accuse me of trying to make a law banning homosexuality or abortion. This is not so the laws were there before and are not being enforced. Recently it has been suggested that a homosexual partner be termed a spouse. This is impossible since spouse means a bride or bridegroom. It can only refer to traditionally married people.
One of the repercussions of legalizing homosexual behaviour is that it can be taught in schools.
Legalizing prostitution allows for the exploitation of young girls in brothels aged 13 or 14 years old (in Sydney). Asian girls have been smuggled into Australia for prostitution, becoming virtual slaves with their passports removed by their owners so they cant leave their brothel.
speak out strongly in parliament on these issues.
Recently the head of the Uniting Church said that free heroin should be provided for addicts, not just injecting facilities.
Lets make the government the drug pusher!
This is akin to encouraging suicide. We should be a caring society, which opposes drug addiction. I commend, therefore, the praiseworthy work of Teen Challenge and Victory Outreach, in this regard.
Franklin Graham has alerted us to the matter of Christians not praying publicly in Jesus Christs Name. Check it out especially in multi faith services. Consequently he wrote a book entitled In Jesus Name.
While preaching in a Middle Eastern Christian meeting recently I passed on a statement I had heard, that Muslims hope to take over Australia by 2036.
I was publicly contradicted by the pastor of the church who had just returned from studies in his homeland he said the year he heard quoted was 2020 for an Islamic Republic in Australia: only 14 years away!
Muslims emigrate in large numbers, and then manage to convert some of the locals.
In Sydney, Lakemba and Punchbowl are almost entirely Muslim areas.
Some of the men have 4 wives, in one house, with up to 12 children from each wife.
Therefore their takeover could be achieved by mere weight of numbers!
In the UK where there are 5 million Muslims, they are asking for an Islamic parliament.
In some London mosques one may see the pictures of the 19 terrorists involved in the September 11 atrocities, paraded as heroes.
Others are more careful because they know they are being watched.
Jamaah Islamia has created some maps portraying the northern half of Australia as part of a regional Islamic area.
This is the most fertile and naturally valuable part of Australia, and understandably this causes some concern.
Further, there are 300 Muslim schools in the USA. President Bush wants to know what these students are being taught.
A few US born Muslims are asking to go to Iraq in order to fi ght US soldiers!
Some of our Christian leaders are very naïve, for instance, in imagining that Muslims and Christians are worshipping the same God, or that all roads reach to heaven.
The Koran was completed about 700 AD.
There are some 10-year-old boys who can recite the whole book off by heart!
According to Islamic teaching, whoever believes that Jesus is the Son of God is a perverted unbeliever and so it cant be too wrong to blow them up!
Seventy-two virgins are provided in heaven for those who die for Allah e.g. as suicide bombers.
We must pray for revival, and share and propagate the Christian faith.
I encourage Christians to stand for parliament especially under the covering of our Christian Democratic Party.
We want Christian marriages not civil celebrants without Christian content.
There are many challenges we are in a battle for the soul of the nation.
By Gods grace and power we will win! The Lord bless you real good.
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Appeared in Issue 21.1 CETF NR 35 April 2006
"...contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints" -- Jude v3
-Last revised-Monday, October 09, 2006