Is the future for the Church of England’s General Synod… Dan Andrews?

“The readiness of the English middle classes to sacrifice democracy on the altar of political correctness was evident at last week’s meeting of the Church of England’s General Synod.

It was during a debate on the dry subject of the CofE’s governance structures that the growing anti-democratic spirit on this largely democratically elected body asserted itself. …”

– At Anglican Ink, Julian Mann looks at some disturbing moves in the Church of England’s General Synod.

Dual Citizens podcast

David Ould has recently started a podcast which many will find of interest –

Dual Citizens is “a podcast analysing current affairs, informed by the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Covering various topics weekly, Dual Citizens explains how Christianity holds an important sense of relevancy in contemporary society, and how all Christians are ‘dual citizens’ belonging to two places; their country, and Jesus’ heavenly kingdom.”

Check it out here.

A small step forward for religious freedom – with Bishop Michael Stead

From The Pastor’s Heart:

“Religious Freedom will be debated in the Australian Parliament this week.

Two parliamentary reports were released late on Friday afternoon. MP’s and Senators have spent the weekend reading them.

The reports show the Coalition and Labor broadly in support of introducing improved protections for people of Faith.

The reports recommendations are set to go to the party rooms on Tuesday morning, and the House of Representatives as early as Tuesday afternoon.

Anglican Bishop Michael Stead is the new chair of Freedom for Faith.”

– Watch or listen at The Pastor’s Heart.

And please pray about the expected vote this afternoon (Tuesday 8th February).

See also:

Submission to the Senate Legal Affairs Committee on the Religious Discrimination Bill – Freedom for Faith.

Advance Australia Fair?

“Watching the Australia Day celebrations whilst on holiday was much more interesting and revealing than I had anticipated. Normally I am bored to tears by these kinds of events however I have to say that I was impressed, and I learned a great deal. It was like a cross between the BBC’s Children in Need, celebrating the good that charities and volunteers do, and BBC Scotland’s Hogmanay show – a bit kitsch and cliched, but nonetheless something that makes you glad to be Scottish – or in this case, Australian.

The wonderful work done by Australians throughout the country was highlighted and the music was… not bad.The fireworks and setting in Sydney harbour (as well as the 12 Apostles and other spectacular Aussie scenery) made one thankful to be an Australian – or in the case of yours truly – a guest in this wonderful country.

But the whole show also revealed something deeply disturbing. …”

– Sometimes it takes a visitor to our country to point out what we might otherwise miss. David Robertson writes at AP.

‘The divide between two different Christianities’

“One of the most influential books in the 20th Century Church was J Gresham Machen’s Christianity and Liberalism.

Machen was prophetic in his analysis of the crisis facing the Church in the US in the first half of the century – some would argue that it was because of his (and others’) stance that the US Church did not go down the path of decline that Churches in most other Western countries did.

In his prophetic book he warned:

‘A terrible crisis unquestionably has arisen in the Church. In the ministry of evangelical churches are to be found hosts of those who reject the gospel of Christ. By the equivocal use of traditional phrases, by the representation of differences of opinion as though they were only differences about the interpretation of the Bible, entrance into the Church was secured for those who are hostile to the very foundations of the faith.’

These words came to mind as I listened to the latest debate on conversion therapy on Premier’s Unbelievable, between Jayne Ozanne, the chair of Ban Conversion Therapy, and Peter Lynas of the Evangelical Alliance. …”

– At The Wee Flea, David Robertson reposts an article he wrote for Christian Today.

The Criminalization of Christianity in Finland

“In a foreshadowing of America’s future under coercive secularism, a Finnish politician and Finnish bishop will go on criminal trial next week for merely upholding historic Christian teaching on sexual morality.

The trial is a telling measure of the erosion of Christianity in Europe.

Juhana Pohjola, a Lutheran bishop, and Päivi Räsänen, a member of Finland’s Parliament, stand accused of an act increasingly forbidden in the de-Christianized West: quoting the Bible. …

After Räsänen quoted from St. Paul’s letter to the Romans in a tweet, she found herself under police interrogation for 13 hours.”

The American Spectator.

Discipled by Algorithms — Where is ‘Big Tech’ Leading You?

“My wife and I ask each other a routine question about technology — and it may not be what you expect. Yes, we ask if the other heard us, and we ask to put down the phone for a while during family time. We, like most families in the digital age, have a ways to go to instill better technology habits in our homes. But the most frequent question we ask each other is, Did you see this online?

While that may seem like an odd question to ask, it reveals a much deeper issue with technology, one we often fail to consider amid concerns about screen time, app limits, and Internet filters. …”

– At Desiring God, Jason Thacker raises some important questions.

Related:

12 Ways your Phone is Changing You.

Anglican Revisionists Keep Pushing their Agenda

“It’s 2022 so about time for an Anglican update. What’s new in the Anglican Church in Australia?

Well, not much. The situation can be characterised as revisionists now effectively ignoring the moratorium we were going to have before General Synod.

Action has been happening in 2 places in particular …”

– David Ould shares the latest moves in Wangaratta and Perth.

Image: The Crest of the Anglican Church of Australia and those of its members dioceses.

Related:

Sydney Diocese Response to actions in the Diocese of Wangaratta – December 10 2020.

Roman Catholicism as a “Temptation” for Evangelical Theology

“The Presidential Address at the Evangelical Theological Society is a helpful barometer to measure where the wind blows in North American evangelical theology. This year (on November 16), President Al Mohler dedicated his address at the 73rd annual convention in Fort Worth, Texas, to the four temptations for contemporary evangelical theology.

In Mohler’s view, present-day evangelical theology faces these temptations: Fundamentalism, Atheism, Roman Catholicism, and Liberalism.

These words are not to be taken lightly; the trajectory of evangelical theology has not always been peaceful. What is interesting is to understand the main dangers surrounding it.

Let me briefly comment on three temptations and then focus on Roman Catholicism…”

– At Vatican Files, Leonardo De Chirico is thankful for Albert Mohler’s clarity.

(Link via Tim Challies.)

Related:

Article XIX of The Thirty Nine Articles.

Five misleading Untruths about the Federal Religious Discrimination Bill

“Would a Federal Religious Discrimination Bill (RDB) allow a nurse to say to a patient with HIV that AIDS is a punishment from God?

Would the RDB allow a disability worker to say to a disabled girl that her disability is caused by the devil?

Would it allow a doctor to refuse treatment to a gay patient just because he’s gay?

These are some of the claims being made about the Religious Discrimination Bill that’s before Federal Parliament. …”

– At The Gospel Coalition Australia Akos Balogh takes a look at some of the claims which have been made about the Religious Discrimination Bill.

See also:

Your voice needed on Religious Discrimination Bill – SydneyAnglicans.net.
Parliamentary survey open to all until Tuesday December 21.

The Religious Discrimination Bill arrives

“After a long wait, the Federal government has released the text of the Religious Discrimination Bill 2021 which is about to be introduced into the Parliament. There has been no general Federal law dealing with detrimental treatment of Australians on the basis of their religious faith and activities, and this is a welcome development, implementing a recommendation of the Ruddock Review which reported in 2018.

The government previously released two “Exposure Drafts” of the Bill (see some comments on those in previous posts, here, and here.) Having promised prior to the last election that he would advance this law, Prime Minister Morrison will now introduce it into the House of Representatives. If passed by the House, the Bill will then need to approved by the Senate, where it seems likely to be referred to (yet another) committee before being voted on there, probably sometime in the New Year. …”

– At Law and Religion Australia, Neil Foster gives an overview of the Religious Discrimination Bill, and also indicates where it differs from previous drafts.

The Green Captivity of the Church

“Even as I pressed the send button I knew it was a risky moment. And so it proved to be.

As soon as the article was published on a Christian website, there were cries of ‘heretic’, ‘he should lose his job’, ‘how unloving and unChristlike’, ‘cancel him’!?

What was the crime? What heresy was I expounding?

I had dared to suggest that perhaps the Climate Change debate was not over, and there were lots of questions that still had to be answered, and that we should approach the subject with a great deal more humility. …”

– At The Wee Flea David Robertson has republished a piece he wrote for AP (Australian Presbyterian magazine).

See also this article to which he links:

The Church must preach the gospel of Jesus Christ, not climate change – William Philip, The Tron Church, Glasgow.

A word on behalf of church pastors around Melbourne

“I thought I would take a moment to share some of the things pastors are trying their best to address at the moment.

Pastoring a church is a tremendous privilege and joy, and it’s not always an easy task. Indeed there is reason why many pastors burn out after a few years and many don’t make it beyond 10 years in the ministry.

This pandemic has bowled a googley at all of us, no matter our religious views, job, and life situation. Pastors are not immune from the daily stresses, troubles, and temptations that we all face.…”

– Murray Campbell (at Mentone Baptist Church) shares something of what is happening for pastors in Melbourne (and elsewhere). Fuel for prayer.

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