Category Archives: Religious freedom

I Recommend

This past week, I shared the following links on social media and I think they’re worth sharing here too:

Distancing Darwin from Racism Is a Fool’s Errand

“It is very true what you say about the higher races of men, when high enough, replacing & clearing off the lower races. In 500 years how the Anglo-Saxon race will have spread & exterminated whole nations; & in consequence how much the human race, viewed as a unit, will have risen in rank.” ~ Charles Darwin

Sin is Like a Snowball

Scott Bredenhof reflects on how sin can gain dangerous momentum in our lives — and what God has done about it.

Dusting When the Light is Dim

I love these kinds of illustrations. This is a good one is about sanctification — I’ve saved it for future reference.

We Have Met the Enemy

Tal Bachman: “But the most alarming revelation was the astronomical rate of suicide among post-surgery transgenders, particularly after a decade. The post-surgery suicide rate wasn’t 25% higher than normal, which would have been disturbing enough. Nor was it 50% higher. Nor was it 100% higher. It wasn’t even 250% higher, which would have been, or should have been, a screaming alarm for the medical community and public alike. Nor was it 400% higher, or 600% higher. It was nearly two thousand percent higher.”

We the Screamers

Another powerful piece from Jonathon Van Maren.

Can a politician be personally, but not politically, pro-life?

Some conservative politicians try to take a middle-of-the-road approach to abortion: personally against, but politically indifferent or even for. Jon Dykstra analyzes this from a biblical perspective.

Australian Christian Lobby in the News

The Australian Christian Lobby has no equal elsewhere in the world. This is an organization doing phenomenal work to bring biblical thinking into the public square. ACL is headed up by Martyn Iles. He’s been doing a tour across Australia with his “The Truth of It” program. When ACL attempted to hire public venues in Western Australia, they were refused. The explanation is in the video clip below. Just yesterday (Friday July 16), ACL announced that the WA state government had backed down.


Rod Dreher – Orthodox and Not

Live Not By Lies: A Manual for Christian Dissidents, Rod Dreher.  New York: Sentinel, 2020.  Hardcover, 240 pages.

Rod Dreher’s latest book has gained as much interest as his previous work, The Benedict Option.  This new offering explains the new world we’re in, the “brave new world” looming on the horizon, and how it all connects to the recent past of Eastern Europe.  Live Not By Lies also wants to provide guidance for Christians as we descend into the darkness of “soft totalitarianism.”   It looked like a promising read.  However, it turned out to be less than what I was hoping for.

The strength of this volume is in its first part:  Understanding Soft Totalitarianism.  This part is more descriptive, historical, and analytical.  Dreher explains that totalitarianism is about complete state control over actions, thought, emotions, and even what is and isn’t true.  Soft totalitarianism “is therapeutic.  It masks its hatred of dissenters from its utopian ideology in the guise of helping and healing” (p.7).  Soft totalitarianism “masquerades as kindness, demonizing dissenters and disfavoured demographic groups to protect the feelings of ‘victims’ in order to bring about ‘social justice’ (p.9). 

Dreher helpfully draws historical lessons from the Eastern European experience of totalitarianism during the Cold War era.  He interviews people who lived through that horror and who see disturbing parallels developing in western democracies today.  Chapter 3, “Progressivism as Religion” is the best chapter.  It explains how the Christian faith and totalitarianism, particularly manifested with today’s woke leftists, are “best understood as competing religions” (p.56).  So far, so good.

The subtitle is “A Manual for Christian Dissidents.”  Dreher desires to help Christians dissent from the deepening soft totalitarianism.  This is the focus of the second part of Live Not By Lies, How to Live in Truth.  In this section too, there are valuable insights to be gleaned from the experiences of others who’ve endured communism in Eastern Europe.  Nevertheless, this is the weaker section of the book. 

I say that for two main reasons.  One is because I’d expect “A Manual for “Christian Dissidents” to offer authoritative guidance based on what the Bible teaches.  The Bible is mentioned here and there.  There are paraphrases from a couple of Bible passages and one direct quote.  But the Bible doesn’t appear to be foundational to Dreher’s manual.  The lived experience of people who were dissidents during the Cold War seems to be more so.

The second reason I found this section of the book weak is because of what it does, and doesn’t do, with the gospel.  In some places Dreher mentions the redemptive work of Jesus Christ.  However, there’s no mention of salvation in Christ alone, by grace alone.  In fact, there are places where that biblical teaching is denied by some of those interviewed by Dreher (e.g. Alexander Ogorodnikov on p.196).  Moreover, the book doesn’t emphasize how it’s the true gospel of Jesus Christ which can actually transform not only individual lives, but also entire nations.

These points won’t be surprising to those who know something of Dreher’s background.  He converted to Roman Catholicism in 1993 and then to Eastern Orthodoxy in 2006.  Sexual abuse scandals in the Roman Catholic Church led to his departure.  However, Dreher continues to have a mostly positive view of Roman Catholicism. 

That leads me to one of the other major issues in Live Not By Lies:  its false ecumenism.  When Dreher says “Christian,” his definition includes Roman Catholics, Orthodox, Baptists, Pentecostals, etc.  It’s a definition that can’t be swallowed by a confessionally Reformed Christian.  I can grant that many of the people interviewed in this book are religious, as is Dreher.  I can grant that, in sociological terms, they and their churches are often described as “Christian” in the broad sense of being distinct from other religions.  I can grant that totalitarian persecutors don’t care about our theological differences — they will persecute the devout Roman Catholic as a “Christian” just as readily as they will the Bible-believing Protestant.  What I cannot grant is that any person who holds to the gospel-denying tenets of Roman Catholicism or Orthodoxy is truly a Christian in the biblical sense of the word.  As an Orthodox believer, Dreher holds otherwise.  This is a dangerous lie which we ought not to live by.    

His Orthodoxy surfaces at certain points in the book.  Dreher describes “mystical awakenings” by which God is supposed to have revealed himself (p.197).  He speaks of a prisoner who “was able to be an icon” to others (p.204) and an Orthodox father-son duo canonized as saints whose icon hangs in Dreher’s home (p.178).  Dreher quotes a Romanian Orthodox priest who says, “You, my friend, are the unique bearer of your deification in Jesus Christ…” (p.160), referring to the Eastern Orthodox doctrine of theosis.

Finally, Dreher’s focus is on more recent totalitarian movements.  However, a Reformed reader can’t help but think of other historic forms of totalitarianism, especially those connected with Roman Catholicism.  I think of what the Huguenots endured in France during the two centuries following the Reformation.  What Reformed believers need today is a “manual for Christian dissidents” primarily based on Scripture, but also explaining how our Huguenot brethren dissented in their day.

Live Not By Lies is worth reading, but with discernment.  It requires a cautious eye and a thoughtful mind.  To be sure, Dreher has helpful insights to offer.  But it has to be recognized that he’s not coming from a Reformed perspective, not even a Protestant or Evangelical perspective.  He has an understanding of what it means to live not by lies that’s not entirely acceptable to a Reformed Christian.  For us, living not by lies means we need to live by the truth of God’s Word as our ultimate standard.  Living not by lies means we need to uphold the truth of the biblical gospel – that there’s salvation through Jesus Christ alone.  Living not by lies means we need to experience unity with other believers only on the basis of a biblical faith.


Submission for Tasmania Law Reform Institute

The Tasmania Law Reform Institute (TLRI) recently released an “Issues Paper” addressing “possible reforms to Tasmanian law to respond to sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI) conversion practices.” They requested public feedback via their website. My public submission to the TLRI is below. I urge other Bible-believing Christians in Tasmania to also make submissions. The development of this kind of legislation could have dire consequences for our churches, our families, and our Christian schools. The deadline is January 7, 2021.

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Public Submission for Tasmania Law Reform Institute

Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Conversion Practices

1.0   Introduction

I am Rev. Dr. Wes Bredenhof.  I have served as the pastor of the Launceston Free Reformed Church since September 2015.  Previous to that, I served two churches in Canada.  I have a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Alberta (1996), a Master of Divinity degree from the Canadian Reformed Theological Seminary (2000), and a Doctor of Theology degree from Reformation International Theological Seminary (2010).

I am called to be a preacher of the good news of Jesus Christ.  My calling is to show love to everyone I can by first explaining the serious trouble all of us are in.  I am like a medical doctor who explains the disease so the patient can understand the need for treatment and be persuaded to take it.  The serious trouble we all face is that we are all under God’s just judgment for our rebellion against him.  God is infinitely majestic and if you rebel against infinite majesty, the appropriate penalty is infinite too.  However, in his mercy and love, God has provided a way for this judgment to be averted.  God sent his Son Jesus Christ to live and die in the place of anyone who would turn from their rebellion and believe in him.  Jesus Christ lived a perfect life in the place of all who trust in him.  Jesus Christ suffered and died on the cross to take the punishment of all who have faith in him.  Jesus rose from the dead, proving that God accepted the sacrifice he made.  There is now a way to eternal life and my calling is to show that way to everyone I can.  Because I love God and I love people, I preach Jesus Christ as the Saviour of rebels like me.  This is what is most important to me and to the church I serve.  I have prepared this submission because this is what is most important.         

Recently I was involved as an expert witness at a case before the State Administrative of Tribunal of Western Australia.  The case involves a couple from another Free Reformed Church (Baldivis, WA) who were denied the opportunity to be respite foster carers for children ages 0-5 because of their religious beliefs on sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI).  I prepared a report for this matter testifying to the religious beliefs of the Free Reformed Churches of Australia.  This report is attached to this submission as Appendix 1.  I attach it in order to demonstrate that there are Bible-believing Christians in Tasmania who have the potential to be affected by any proposed legislation regarding SOGI conversion practices.  This report also demonstrates that our beliefs are historic Christian teachings based on what the Bible says.

I also respectfully provide this submission to alert you to the fact that Christian churches like ours will not change our practices.  Our ultimate commitment is to God and our ultimate authority is the Bible as God’s inspired, inerrant, and infallible Word.  Because we believe what the Bible says, we do respect those in authority over us.  The Bible teaches us to pray for those who rule over us (1 Timothy 2:1-2).  The Bible teaches us to submit to our government (Romans 13:1).  We do all this gladly.  However, if there is a conflict between what God teaches in the Bible and what the state legislates, we will always follow what the Bible teaches.  We cannot compromise on that.  Because we love God who first loved us through Jesus Christ, we will be steadfastly faithful to God and to the Bible.       

2.0   Background and Terms of Reference

I note that the inquiry was initiated by peak Tasmanian LGBTQA+ stakeholder bodies and representatives.  This appears to have slanted the inquiry in a particular direction, one that is only sympathetic to LGBTQA+ concerns.  The Terms of Reference bear this out.  It is assumed from the start that all SOGI conversion practices (as defined by the working definition) are to be viewed as harmful.  The rest of the Issues Paper is consistent with that assumption, making it almost a foregone conclusion that Tasmania must do something about SOGI conversion practices. 

3.0   Inquiry Process

The Issues Paper was prepared by research staff guided by an independent Expert Advisory Group.  I note that this includes “a member of a community of faith” (p.xiii).  In the Acknowledgements (p.xiv), the Expert Advisory Group is thanked by name.  Rev. Jeff Savage, Uniting Church pastor in Hobart, is mentioned.  Was such a choice intentionally aligned with the bias mentioned above in 2.0?  What if the TLRI had selected a Presbyterian pastor instead?  Ideally, the Expert Advisory Group should have included several members from a range of communities of faith, including Bible-believing Christians and even non-Christians.  For example, Hobart has a growing Islamic community – it might be helpful to hear their perspective.        

Whatever the case may be, I gladly raise my hand to be involved in any future work in this area.  If the TLRI would care to understand the concerns of Bible-believing Christians and how they may be affected by prospective legislation, I would certainly be willing to have such a conversation.  The TLRI should act in good faith and genuinely aim to be as inclusive as possible.  That would mean not excluding sincere Bible-believing Christians.                    

4.0   List of Questions

I have read the entire Issues Paper as background to the questions asked for this consultation.  Some of the questions assume from the outset that all SOGI conversion practices (as defined by the working definition) are harmful.  These questions (by design?) exclude Bible-believing Christians and are, therefore, impossible for me to answer.  I will only answer four of the questions.

4.1   Question 1

After considering the background and working definition (see [1.3.23] on page 13), in your opinion, what are and are not ‘sexual orientation and gender identity conversion practices’?

In my view, the definition of SOGI conversion practices, for the purpose of this consultation, should be narrowly limited to extreme acts that would normally be described as torture – such as non-consensual electroshock or aversion therapy.  However, it should then be proven that such practices take place in Tasmania – the Issues Paper acknowledges in 2.3.1 that there is no data on this question.   

Additionally, I would ask the TLRI to give consideration to reviewing 1.2.8 of the Issues Paper.  In particular, the Paper speaks of “false claims” and “false publications.”  Does preaching from a Bible passage addressing SOGI constitute a “false claim”?  Does asking a parishioner to read a Bible passage addressing SOGI involve a “false publication”?  The TLRI ought to recognize that the Bible does speak about these things, for example, in Romans 1:26-27 and 1 Corinthians 6:9-11.  Will a consequence of SOGI conversion practice legislation be that the Bible is considered to be a “false publication” which ought somehow to be proscribed?  That seems to be the direction of the Issues Paper. 

Moreover, the presupposition behind 1.2.8 needs to be justified.  The presupposition is that there are false claims and there are true claims.  The language of the Issues Paper is not even provisional about such claims, but rather appears to be grounded on absolute certainty.  However, by what objective standard are we to determine which claims are true and which are false?  The Issues Paper seems to presuppose further that science is the objective standard by which truth is determined and distinguished from falsehood.  Science appears to be the ultimate authority for the Issues Paper.  In Christian terms, we would say that science is “the Bible” here.  However, what do you do when your “Bible” contradicts itself or needs to be constantly updated?  How would you be able to have absolute certainty about what is true or false with such a “Bible”?  In the nature of the case, there is scientific research calling into question some of the claims in the Issues Paper.  In 2016, the journal The New Atlantis published an extensive review of social scientific research regarding SOGI issues.[1]  There is no unanimous scientific consensus on these issues.  So how can the Issues Paper so boldly insist that some claims are false while implying that others are true?  Such absolute claims require a transcendent objective standard.

Finally, in this section of the Issues Paper, there is no discussion about the inherent nature of sexual orientation and gender identity.   For example, are these concepts rooted in biology, are they social constructs, or something else altogether?  More to the point, are they inherently fixed or can they change?  If they can change, what factors might be involved?  Are allowances made for changes in any direction?                  

4.2   Question 3

Have you been involved in or offered, or are you aware of, any forms of SOGI conversion practices in Tasmania?  If so, what were the effects on you, or the person exposed to them?

As evidenced in Appendix 1, our church preaches and teaches what the Bible says, including what it says about sexual orientation and gender identity.  We do this out of our ultimate commitment to God, our love for him, and out of love for the people around us.  We counsel accordingly.  We pray publicly and privately accordingly.  According to the working definition the Issues Paper provides, we are involved in SOGI conversion practices.  We make no apologies for that.  Moreover, as stated above, this is non-negotiable for our church since we believe what the Bible says.  For us to do otherwise would be unloving and disingenuous. 

4.3   Question 4

Do you think that Tasmanian law should be changed to address SOGI conversion practices?  If so, should this be through comprehensive reform, amendment or both (a hybrid)?

No, not if it will prevent people who want to seek Christian, Bible-based help with their sexual orientation and gender identity from getting the help they desire.  Human dignity is most honoured when individuals are allowed choice as to the assistance they want.    

Also, Tasmanian law should not be changed if it will conflict with the sincerely held religious beliefs and practices of people like me and the members of my church.

4.4   Question 9

Are there any other matters that you consider relevant to this Inquiry and would like to raise?

The federal government has indicated its intention to introduce a Religious Discrimination Bill.  Surely it would be reasonable for Tasmania to wait and see what this bill entails and how it may impact SOGI conversion practice legislation. 

Also, I believe it would be reasonable for the TLRI to engage in more comprehensive community consultation before moving forward.  TLRI especially needs to understand the concerns of Tasmanian Christians around religious freedom.  I am confident many pastors and churches would be willing to discuss this with the TLRI.  Such a reasonable step could go a long way towards preventing unnecessary legal conflicts in the future.

There may also be far-reaching unintended consequences for such legislation, especially as regards parents and Christian schools: 

Appendix 1 was submitted as an expert witness report in a case involving a Christian couple who wished to be foster parents.  Their religious beliefs as they relate to SOGI resulted in Wanslea Family Services determining they were not fit even to be respite foster carers for children ages 0-5.  The WA State Government intervened in the hearing and supported Wanslea’s position.  The couple involved have their own natural children.  Would not consistency demand that Wanslea and the WA State Government hold that this couple are not fit to have any children in their care?  I would urge the TLRI to give careful consideration to the consequences of any proposed SOGI conversion legislation – will this require the government to remove children from the homes of Christian parents who hold to what the Bible teaches about SOGI?  Will this result in a new “stolen generation”?

While it is not operated or governed by our church, members of our church community operate a Christian school in Launceston.  This Christian school is also unreservedly committed to what the Bible teaches about SOGI.  The children who attend this school are taught accordingly, because their parents want their children to be taught in a way which corresponds with their Christian faith.  In fact, the parents have all made public vows to this effect – this is taken very seriously in our community.  There are several similar Christian schools throughout Tasmania.  The TLRI ought to give careful consideration to the consequences of any proposed SOGI conversion legislation as they relate to Christian education.  Will it continue to be lawful for Christian parents to have their children educated in a context where the teachings of the Bible about everything are communicated and honoured?  Or is this legislation going to have the consequence, intended or otherwise, of destroying Christian education which follows the teachings of the Bible?

Finally, I would urge the TLRI to give due consideration to the recent Bell v. Tavistock case, decided by the High Court in the United Kingdom.  This case illustrates the harm that may occur when children and young people are pushed towards gender transitioning.  Furthermore, it opens up the question of whether a government adopting SOGI conversion legislation might be held liable under similar circumstances.            

5.0 Conclusion

Thank you for this opportunity to contribute to discussions around this potential legislation. 

Let me conclude by reassuring you that my concern and that of my church community is not to oppress or injure anyone.  We are not motivated by hatred or animus – quite the opposite.  Rather, we sincerely believe that following what the Bible teaches leads to human flourishing.  This is a genuinely held religious belief.  There are many examples of individuals who identified as gay or lesbian, but, when they became Christians, they found a different identity which gave them joy and peace.  They identified with Jesus Christ.  They became disciples of Jesus, committed to following him as Lord in every area of their lives.  You can research some of their stories for yourself:  Sam Allberry, Jackie Hill Perry, Rosaria Butterfield, and Becket Cook.  They did not become Christians because of some extreme form of SOGI conversion practice (like electroshock therapy).  It happened just because someone talked about the Bible with them and prayed with them – and the Holy Spirit worked through that to change their lives.  That is simply what we aim to do in our church.  In other words, we strive to carry on in the historic Christian tradition as Reformed Christians have done for centuries.

If you so desire, I would welcome the opportunity to add to this submission in person or in writing.    

Submitted respectfully this 17th day of December, 2020

Rev. Dr. Wes Bredenhof

Free Reformed Church of Launceston


[1] https://www.thenewatlantis.com/publications/introduction-sexuality-and-gender


The Domino Theory

A few weeks ago I visited the new Western Australia museum in Perth.  One of the exhibits was about Australia’s involvement in the Vietnam War.  There was a section explaining the Domino Theory.  The display had large, physical dominoes which visitors were invited to knock over to see the idea in action.  Every time someone would knock over the dominoes it’d make a loud noise reverberating through the gallery.  There was no quiet way to knock over those dominoes.

The idea of “the Domino Theory” was that if South Vietnam fell to the Communists from the North, soon communism would spread unchecked throughout other countries in Southeast Asia.  South Vietnam would be the first domino to fall and then it would knock down all the other dominoes in turn.  It appears that the Domino Theory was wrong, because South Vietnam did fall in 1975, but communism didn’t spread to every other country in the region.  The display in the WA Museum made the point with a question:  “Did the Domino Theory prove to be correct?”  The real point being, of course, that Western countries like the US and Australia went to war on a flimsy pretext.      

That’s just bad history.  We don’t know what would have happened if there’d been no Western involvement in Vietnam.  We do know that communism is a missionary cause – it’s inherently expansionistic, it wants to grow and spread.  Perhaps the lengthy involvement of the US and Australia and other countries actually prevented the domino effect, even if they didn’t stop the North Vietnamese.  Lee Kuan Yew, Singapore’s first Prime Minister, had another plausible explanation.  He argued that Western intervention gave time for other Southeast Asian countries “to consolidate and engage in economic growth.”  Such growth was inhospitable to communism.  The Domino Theory may have been at least partly a valid reason for war after all.

For several decades, we’ve been in a different type of war.  This war also involves dominoes.  This war involves a cause that’s inherently expansionistic.  It’s a war for hearts and minds, but it has far wider consequences.  It’s the Sexual Revolution, especially as it pertains to Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity (SOGI) issues.

The strategy of the SOGI “warriors” has been incremental.  They’ve patiently taken one slow step at a time.  The dominoes haven’t fallen in rapid succession, but in slow motion. 

In about 1995, I remember attending a town-hall meeting in Edmonton, Alberta with our MP, David Kilgour.  Kilgour, a member of the ruling Liberal Party, professed to be a Christian.  This town-hall meeting was to discuss proposed federal legislation which would grant benefits to the partners of government employees in same-sex relationships.  The building was packed for this meeting.  Many people spoke, most of whom were opposed to the legislation.  Some raised the possibility that this was a step towards formal government recognition of same-sex relationships, and maybe even same-sex marriage.  At the end of the evening, Kilgour spoke to the crowd.  He said that he appreciated hearing everyone’s concerns, then he added an assurance that this wasn’t going to lead to further developments.  He was wrong.  I knew he was wrong. 

How did I know that?  Because the SOGI warriors told me.  Their goal was never simply indifference.  That was just the first step.  Their goal was never simply toleration.  That was the next domino to fall.  The SOGI warriors’ goal was never even simply acceptance.  Their stated goal from the beginning of the Sexual Revolution has always been universal affirmation and celebration.  Every knee must bow to the Revolution. 

Today we’re in the last stage of this war.  In most of the culture around us, the last domino has already fallen.  Woe to the city hall that doesn’t fly a rainbow flag during Pride Week.  Woe to the politicians who refuse to march in Pride Parades.  Affirmation and celebration are now virtually mandatory.  It’s like a replay of the scene in Daniel 3 with Nebuchadnezzar’s golden image.  When the music played, everyone was required to bow in reverent worship. There’d be fiery consequences for those who didn’t. 

Just like Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, Bible-believing Christians today are the holdouts.  Sadly, many so-called Christians have bowed the knee in affirmation and celebration.  They’ve fallen.  But true Christians haven’t and never will.  We can’t, no matter what they threaten us with.  Our ultimate commitment is to the true God.  This true God promises that his people will not fall like so many dominoes:  “To him who is able to keep you from falling and to present you before his glorious presence without fault and with great joy…” (Jude 24).  In the meantime, our calling is to hold the line and fight with the only weapon we have:  the Word of God.  Against this expansionistic missionary movement, we need to keep on sharing the real gospel of Jesus which can truly change lives, and ultimately even cultures.


Help Support Religious Freedom Down Under

The name of Israel Folau is well-known in Australia, and perhaps is becoming somewhat known overseas too.  He’s the rugby player who got into trouble with Rugby Australia for an Instagram post.  He shared the love of Christ for sinners and the message of 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 that unrepentant sinners are heading for hell.  If you’re familiar with the passage, you know that several types of unrepentant sinners are mentioned:  the sexually immoral, idolaters, adulterers, thieves, greedy, drunkards, revilers, and swindlers.  But it was just the mention of homosexuals that made so many people irate and ended up costing Folau his job as a footballer.  Apparently the drunkards and adulterers are not so easily offended.

He’s challenging that decision in court as a matter of freedom of speech and freedom of religion.  A few days ago, he set up a GoFundMe page and it quickly raised a lot of cash for his case.  However, GoFundMe pulled the plug on it.  The Australian Christian Lobby has now taken over the fundraising.  They’re hoping to raise $3 million.

It’s important to realize what’s at stake here.  It’s the freedom to openly share biblical teaching about repentance and salvation.  If Israel Folau is not allowed to do that, it won’t be long before no one is allowed to do that in Australia, including me as a gospel preacher.  This is where the erosion of freedoms begins.  We don’t have to take it sitting down.  We’re allowed to fight for the freedom to share the gospel using the legitimate means available to us.  If something is important to us, why wouldn’t we fight for it?

I probably don’t see eye to eye with Israel Folau on any number of theological issues.  It doesn’t matter.  The world perceives him as a Christian and me as a Christian.  To them we’re on the same page and for that reason we’re shoulder to shoulder.  They’re going to treat us the same and the spread of the gospel is affected one way or another.  I’m reminded of something Bill Muehlenberg wrote yesterday on his blog, adapting from someone else from an earlier era:

In Australia they came first for Archbishop Julian Porteous, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a cleric.
Then they came for Bernard Gaynor, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Catholic.
Then they came for Margaret Court, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a tennis player.
Then they came for Lyle Shelton, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a lobbyist.
Then they came for Israel Folau, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a footballer.
Then they came for me, and by that time no one was left to speak up.

It’s time for us to speak up.  Whether you’re here in Australia or overseas, can you help?  See here for the ACL page where you can contribute to the legal costs to fight for religious freedom and freedom of speech in Australia.

By the way, don’t listen to the media on this issue.  They’re completely biassed against Folau.