ATHEIST TELLS US HOW TO BE A GOOD CHRISTIAN

Great article from James Macpherson. James writes Rebel News, Sky News, and The Spectator Australia. He appears on Sky TV weekly as a commentator on The World According to Rowan Dean. He is the author of “Notes from Woketopia: Laying Bare the Lunacy of Woke Culture”.

Atheist TV identity Andrew Denton, whose advocacy has been important to governments’ embrace of euthanasia, described the Catholic Church’s position as “a shameful act, devoid of love or Christian mercy towards the dying”.

“It is difficult to conceive of a less-loving or, indeed, Christian act,” he said.

So Denton, who is an atheist, will tell people how to be good Christians. ‘There is no God! Now let me instruct you on how to be a good Catholic.’

Denton is typical of the new totalitarian elites who now afflict Western civilisation. He and his ilk want everyone to be subservient and obedient, and to accept that people like him are the arbitrators of morality. But worse, Denton completely misrepresents what the Catholic leadership said. They never said a priest would refuse to attend a person’s deathbed or that they would withhold compassion. The Archbishop was very clear that pastoral support and prayers would still be offered. He simply said that if a person chooses to directly contravene Catholic teaching they couldn’t, at the same time, expect a Catholic blessing (the sacraments).

Denton twists the Archbishop’s words to make a political point. As Denton might say, it is difficult to conceive of a less-loving or, indeed, Christian act. Undeterred by context or nuance, Denton continued …

“It is little wonder that the latest census revealed that the Catholic Church in Australia is losing members at a historic rate.”

Denton’s comments would be pertinent if the church was running a popularity contest. But Christianity is true whether everyone believes it or no one believes it. The sun, after all, does not stop shining just because people close their eyes. He continued …

“If the leaders of this institution – which receives enormous subsidies from Australian taxpayers – wish to continue their acts of ferocity and contempt towards the wishes and laws of the broader community, then they can expect to see more of the same.”

Hilarious. On the one hand, people like Denton bang on about the importance of separation of church and state … and, on the other hand, they threaten the church with penalties if they don’t tow the State line. Does Denton really expect Christianity to change its doctrine every time the State changes its laws? Evidently, yes.

I believe Denton is an intelligent and compassionate man. But the entertainer suffers from the conceit of many a public intellectual, believing that his way is the only informed way. It leaves him sounding as doctrinaire as those he criticizes.

Denton’s tirade was prompted by The Australian newspaper report that Catholic priests are likely to deny the last rites to people who commit suicide with the help of the state. “Catholic priests to deny last rides in VAD (Voluntary Assisted Dying) backlash,” the headline read.

In other words, the church will continue to uphold the sanctity of life, even in the face of enormous pressure from the state and euthanasia activists. Well, thank God. Governments – with their support for late-term abortions at the start of life and unbridled enthusiasm for euthanasia at the end – can hardly be relied upon to uphold the value of life.

Christianity is pro-life. If you want people to cheer you as you engage the State to help you die, you might need to find a different religion.

But it’s interesting to me that the Catholic Church’s rejection of euthanasia is news. Is it news because people are surprised the church is willing to take a stand on a cultural issue? Or is it news because the media cannot imagine anyone – not even the Catholic Church – holding fast to timeless truths rather than bowing to the truth of the moment?

If the church said its ministers would bless euthanasia, that would be a news story, since it would represent a complete u-turn on 2000 years of Christian teaching.

I suspect the church’s intransigence on the issue is news because, as Westerners, we are so wedded to the concept of individual autonomy that we cannot imagine anyone – not even God Himself – daring to disagree with our personal choices.

If God loves us, as the church teaches, shouldn’t He cheer every lifestyle choice? And why not our deaths, while He is at it?

People who make a deliberate decision to act against the tenants of the Christian faith expect that same faith to enthusiastically bless them as they do. Talk about entitlement! (But then, isn’t that the very reason we need Christianity – to cure our innate sense of entitlement?)

Christianity is not a cult dispensing emotional support to whatever utilitarian approaches one chooses. It is an internally consistent moral framework based on fundamental commandments (e.g. “Thou shalt not kill”). If one cannot accept this, then one is free to look elsewhere for comfort.

AUSTRALIA: FAST BECOMING AN ANTI-CHRISTIAN NATION

A great article in the WEEKEND AUSTRALIAN by Greg Sheridan 23rd July 2022

Lost in the Secular Desert: Christianity Under Siege

Seven Manly NRL Sea Eagles Players have stood down from Roosters Game over Club’s Pride Jersey

We are on the way to becoming, for the first time, an avowedly anti-Christian nation. Not just non-Christian, but anti-Christian. The census tells us. The culture tells us. The law tells us.

The 2021 census represents an explosive dam burst, with a flood of biblical proportions to follow. For the first time in the modern nation’s history, only a minority of Australians identify as Christians.

This is not a gentle decline. It is a bus hurtling over a cliff. As recently as 25 years ago, nearly three-quarters of Australians called themselves Christians. In 2011, 61 percent was still a solid majority; five years later it was 52 percent, and last year just 44 percent and still falling.

That’s a staggering 17 percent fewer of the population who are Christian in 10 years. Nothing as dramatic and consequential has happened in Australian belief and outlook since 1788.

To be sure, there are nuances in the census. “No religion” does not equate directly to formal atheism. The National Church Life Survey suggests a small majority of Australians believe in God. That’s consistent with the census. Non-Christian religions – Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, Sikhism, Judaism, and others – take total religious affiliation above 50 percent.

The census also has some surprises. Sydney, Sin City, is the most God-loving part of Australia, just as London is the most religious part of Britain.

Read More: The decline of Christianity is a loss for everyone. Christianity is on the decline as faith falls out of favour. Christianity is the most persecuted religion on the planet

But difficult as it may be for some Christians to accept, and much as some secular commentators may want to play it down, claiming that Christian affiliation was formerly overstated or to avert the public gaze from the radical wave engulfing us, Christians must understand they are a minority. That should free them to become a creative, dynamic minority, offering something magnificent to society. They also should get the same rights as other minorities, but that’s another story.

In his brilliant 2021 book, Being the Bad Guys, Perth evangelical pastor Stephen McAlpine presents the dramatic transformation in Christianity’s standing: “Wasn’t it only yesterday Christianity was regarded as a societal good? Now? It’s not only unpalatable; it’s positively toxic.”

In a justly famous blog post a few years ago, McAlpine suggested most Christians accept that Christendom – with all its virtues and all its villainies – is over and they are now in exile. They envisaged this exile in a metaphorical Athens, debating their beliefs in polite and interested company. That was Stage One Exile. Now, Stage Two Exile is in a much more hostile Babylon, where they confront a state and culture uninterested in their ideas, determined instead to bludgeon them into submission.

This should not take us by surprise as Biblical prophecy tells us what will happen prior to Jesus’ return to this planet to put things right.

Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and put you to death, and you will be hated by all nations for my name’s sake. And then many will fall away and betray one another and hate one another. And many false prophets will arise and lead many astray. And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold. But the one who endures to the end will be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.Matthew 24:9-14