Christianity Politics USA

The Kitchen Table 33 – Civic Religion.

On this weeks Kitchen Table Steve and I discuss my earlier article on Civic Religion 

The Kitchen Table 32 – Judgement Day

This is the song I mentioned….

97 comments

  1. Pastor David, There is growing speculation ther is going to be an Australian federal election this year. My local incumbent member has his truck out where it can be seen this last fortnight and there was talk about it when they were reporting on Albanese’s shadow cabinet reshuffle this afternoon.

    They think ScoMo might be hoping to capitalise on his successful handling of the COVID pandemic to get back in.

      1. It seems like Albo is a long way behind ScoMo in the polls, though of course a week is a long time in politics and the hypothetical election would probably be held in September or October, so many months away.

        I am not a very political person but it seems to me like ScoMo’s weakness lies in the way he handked China. Australia is too tied to the USA still and needs to build a much better relationship with our Chinese trading partner. Much better diplomacy is needed there. Other than that, it seems at this very, very early stage like our conservative Christian PM should cruise back in, much to the chagrin of Peter Catt and the APCVA crowd.

      2. He has handled China well….he has stood up to the bully and the bully is furious….but somone had to…How do you have diplomacy with a communist dictatorship that lies, cheats, kills its own people and persecutes Christians?

      3. Hello Pastor,

        I am not as politically astute as you so I am a bit hesitant to reply but here are my thoughts, for whatever they are worth…

        The issues you raise are of course terrible acts by the Chinese government but I also feel that they are internal issues for the Chinese people to deal with, in the same way that I wouldn’t think it is Australia’s place to try to, say, pressure America over the Second Amendment as it is an internal matter for them and none of our business, no matter how many terrible school massacres occur, , but I certainly would over Iraq or the TPP as they are foreign affairs issues. We should look at foreign relations only. Otherwise, we are as bad as the countries that tried to meddle with Russia’s anti-gay propaganda laws at the time of the Sochi Winter Olympics. We know western meddling in other countries can be disastrous anyway from the “regime change” in Iraq, even though we all know Saddam’s human rights records was onmy a pretext and far darker motives lay behind the invasion. Obviously I hope we would unhesitatingly support any Chinese Christians fleeing persecution, though.

        How to deal with China if they attempt to bully or cheat us from a foreign relations perspective though? Two thoughts: ScoMo should utilise Kevin Rudd. Even though he is from the other side of politics, he has the understanding of China and diplomacy and we know he had an exceptionally good relationship with them. Secondly, we know Asian cultures place an exceptionally high value on their reputation so if things did become really nasty, make them “lose face” somehow and you will score a victory. Australia needs to recognise though it is a very minor player on the world stage and needs to be the USA’s lapdog much less, so don’t go picking fights with China unnecessarily. As ScoMo’s colleague, Barnaby Joyce said recently about Australia’s relationship with China, you don’t just walk into a bar and pick a fight with the biggest man in the room.

        Anyway, that’s my two cents’worth. I hope it isn’t too naive. Feel free to point out any flaws in my arguments!

      4. Thanks Jean – but I think they are more than just ‘internal’ issues – a bit like when the Nazis persecuated the Jews surely we should not have seen that as ‘internal’ issues. The Chinese people don’t get to deal with those issues – they are not allowed to. Plus China does not keep things internal – just how much of Australia, the USA etc do they own? Can I suggest you read Hidden Hand or Silent Invasion for the full story – both brilliant books….

        Making China ‘lose face’ would be a disaster…that would mean war. Australia is not the US’s lapdog. And Kevin Rudd would be a disaster. We need someone who will stand up to China – before it is too late.

      5. Thanks, Pastor. I don’t know those books. I’ll check them out.

        Yes, I know the Chinese people cannot do much at present but I am thinking more of them reaching a tipping point at some point in time where there would be enough momentum building behind civil dissent to take down the government, as per the fall of East Germany, the actions of the Solidarity trade union in Poland, the civil strikes in Milosevic’s Serbia and Gandhi’s salt protests. Reaching a stsge where that momentum is achieved is the hard bit. We know there wasn’t enough momentum behind the Tiananmen Square student protests back in the 1980s that were so brutally crushed, for instance.

        As for Nazi Germany, my thoughts are the gas chambers could only work under the cloak of war. Earlier on, when the Nazis had tried to go too far (like Kristallnacht or the Aktion T4 euthanasia program), there was a backlash from the people and even the Nazis had to backdown so it is possible to affect change through civil dissent. No WW2, no holocaust, IMHO. That is of course purely speculation though since we obviously can’t tell how alternative scenarios would have played out in reality.

        Besides being an (allegedly!) micromanaging control freak of a PM, I thought Rudd was okay-ish, mainly because of his stimulus policy helped Australia avoid the GFC. Maybe that was mainly Swan as treasurer though. He was definitely the best post-War Labor PM but that is a very, very low bar indeed… You obviously have an even lower opinion of him than I do, obviously though! I was thinking his love and knowledge of China might have made him an ideal ambassador to the country or at least an advisor to ScoMo, I was thinking.

        God bless, Jean

      6. Jean – there is a fundamental difference between the cases you mention and China. The Chinese people will not be able to overthrow the communist regime – they have neither the means, desire nor power to do so.

        You speculation about the Holocaust is of course just speculation. Many tens of thousands of disabled, Roma, Jews and others had already been murdered by the Nazis before the war. There is no reason to believe that this would not have continued.

        I’ve just read an article today about how the CCP is destroying Hong Kong – with the silence and colussion of the Western allies and corporations. Taiwan will be next…

      7. “Jean – there is a fundamental difference between the cases you mention and China. The Chinese people will not be able to overthrow the communist regime – they have neither the means, desire nor power to do so. ”

        Thanks for taking the time to respond again, Pastor. I really appreciate your thoughtful answers that challenge my own ideas.

        With regard to “the… desire… to do so”, what makes the Chinese so different from the East Europeans, who could not wait to through off the shackles of communism?

        Regarding the Nazis, I agree that there had already been mass persecution and horrific human rights abuses by then but wasn’t it the Wannsee Conference – as late as Jan 1942 – when the “Final Solution” of outright genocide was agreed upon? Until then, weren’t the Nazis still thinking in terms of trying to deport the Jews somewhere where they could have their own state, such as Madagascar? I did here one idea that the Wannsee Conference decisions arose out of America deciding to join the war after Pearl Harbour a few weeks earlier, in which case it would be a panicked response. I know you specialiseed in this area of history, so please enlighten me if I am wrong.

        I agree that China definitely wants Taiwan back and have always done so. They are undertaking intrusions into Taiwanese airspace all the time at the moment, in fact, so things are accelerating there. Would they risk a full-scale military confrontation with the United States over the island, though? Let us pray not. This may be just sabre-rattling in which case they will bide their time.

      8. The East Europeans had a failing Russian State, numerous republics in the Soviet Union – and Thatcher and Reagan standing up to them. They also had Gorbachov…. The Chinese are one nation, with an overwhelming military, economically sucessfull and a weak West – which they are easily able to buy!

        The NAzis were determined to rid Europe of the Jews – it was nothing to do with Pearl Harbour or the US entering the war.

        China will invade Taiwan if they think that the West will adopt the position expressed in your first post – leave China to sort out Chinese affairs – as they regard Taiwan as part of China. They assume the West wil not risk a full scale war – so they will invade at some point soon.

      9. Thanks for replying again, Pastor David, and taking the time to explain. I really appreciate it.

        Regarding Taiwan, such an assumption would be a huge gamble on their part and one with potentially world-shattering consequences, so clearly it requires urgent prayer on our behalf.

        “… he has stood up to the bully and the bully is furious….”

        This is a bit off-topic but there might be a moral in it somewhere….

        What happens when the school bully becomes the headmaster? My son was bullied quite a bit at school in Tasmania by a kid named Shane Oldfield who would mock and taunt him relentlessly. Eventually – and unbelievably! – after he grew up, Shane Oldfield became a government primary school teacher and then a headmaster. I was wondering how someone who was so callous and such a supercilious smart aleck with no empathy for others could possibly look after the kids in his care.

        Today, I saw this article. Most of it is behind a paywall, so I can’t read it all but you can get the gist from what is available:

        ***
        “Lindisfarne North Primary kindy teacher stressed due to claims of witnessing mistreatment of students and staff bullying

        26 Nov 2020 — A Tasmanian primary school will have to compensate a teacher who claims she was bullied by staff and witnessed verbal and physical abuse of students.

        The written decision noted school principal Shane Oldfield had refuted the allegations about mistreatment of students and said he had “no knowledge of this occurring and at no point in time had the worker or any other member of staff reported students being mistreated by any member of staff”.
        ***

        Since the school will have to compensate the employee, they must have been found to be telling the truth, despite Shane Oldfield’s denials. Ultimately, the buck must stop with him as the principal for the toxic workplace culture at the school.

        It also turns out that Shane Oldfield is on the branch executive of the Australian Education Union (AEU) which “deals with professional, industrial, political and administrative issues.” I wonder if that includes allegations of professional misconduct and bullying in workplaces?

        https://aeutas.org.au/aeu-branch-executive/

        I am sure there is a moral in this somewhere but I am not sure what it is at this stage. Leopards never change their spots? Bullies get what is coming to them in the end? You reap what you sow?

      10. “Making China ‘lose face’ would be a disaster…that would mean war. ”

        Okay, what about the opposite tactic? Have our clever diplomats use whatever leverage they have to somehow or another corner China but *deliberately* leave them with one way out so that they can save face – and ensure Australia saves face too. They appreciate that we deliberately leave them with an escape route and come to respect us a bit more. We thereby have a win-win situation and diplomatic tensions ease.

      11. Last post for he night dince it is late. Regarding tge Nazis, I was basing my thoughts on these kind of statements:

        “Prior to the war, the Nazis had focused on encouraging Jews to emigrate from the Greater German Reich through their antisemitic policies and actions. By 1939 in Poland, the Nazis escalated their actions, and segregated and imprisoned Jews for future deportation. At this stage, the Nazis planned to deport Jews to Madagascar or lands further east. Later, in 1941, as both of these options were realised to be infeasible, the Nazis created extermination camps to liquidate the populations of the ghettos instead.”

        We are both right. Increasingky genocidal efforts were underway well before Wannsee but, as I said, it was after the war had started:

        “The mass executions of those deemed to be enemies started almost instantly after the invasion. An indication of this violence can be seen in the actions of Einsatzkommando 9, a sub unit of Einsatzgruppe B, who, following the occupation of Vilnius on 30 June 1941, shot 500 Jews a day.

        Collaboration

        The Einsatzgruppen did not act alone. In many cases the German Army or local collaborators participated in the murders, either actively (in the shootings), by identifying Jews or other enemies, or by assisting in security roles, such as guards for camps. One example of this collaboration can be seen shortly after the invasion in the first week of July 1941, where 5000 Jews in the cities of Riga and Daugavpils were detained and murdered by ethnic Germans and the Lithuanian Activist Front..
        Himmler’s visits further encouraged the widespread mass murder of Jews across the Soviet Union. There were few restrictions on the actions of the Einsatzgruppen, and they accordingly acted with little restraint or uniformity. In many areas, whole Jewish communities were swiftly murdered”

        and

        “In the autumn of 1941, approximately 338,000 Jews remained in Greater Germany. Until this point, Hitler had been reluctant to deport Jews in the German Reich until the war was over because of a fear of resistance and retaliation from the German population. But, in the autumn of 1941, key Nazi figures contributed to mounting pressure on Hitler to deport the German Jews. This pressure culminated in Hitler ordering the deportation of all Jews still in the Greater German Reich and Protectorate between 15-17 September 1941.

        Following the order… officials in the Łódź, Litzmannstadt, Minsk and Riga ghettos were all informed that they would need to absorb the population of Jews from the Greater German Reich, irrespective of overcrowding.

        The Minsk Ghetto was full, so in order to make room for the Reich Jews, the local SD, German Army and local collaborators gathered approximately 25,000 of the local ghetto inhabitants, drove them to a local ravine, and murdered them….

        In Łódź Ghetto, no local Jews were removed… Instead, following the success of the experiments in using gas vans for mass murder at Chełmno extermination camp in December 1941, deportations from the ghetto to Chełmno began on 16 January 1942, four days before the Wannsee Conference.”

        Finally, they have this to say:

        “As with most of the Nazis’ murderous actions, the deportation of German Jews was improvised and haphazard. The increased numbers of Jews arriving in the ghettos of eastern Europe led to severe overcrowding, unsustainable food shortages and poor sanitation. This, in combination with the slow progress in the German invasion of the Soviet Union, convinced the Nazis that a ‘solution’ to the ‘Jewish problem’ needed to be organised sooner than had been originally envisaged. The deportations also partly led to the gas experiments at Chełmno, and heightened the Nazis’ sense of urgency to coordinate the policy towards Jews at the Wannsee Conference.”

        So Wannsee just speeds things up and formalises a policy already in place ut the policy of genocidal mass murder only takes place once the war begins.

        https://www.theholocaustexplained.org/how-and-why/how/the-wannsee-conference/

      12. Pastor, you might find this forum interesting. It is a military alert site run by some American fundamentalist Christians(!)

        Anyway, you can see one of the top discussion threads is about tecent Chinese incursions into Taiwanese air space, so you might want to keep an eye on it:

        https://community.defconwarningsystem.com/forums/military-events.6/

        NOTE: you may encounter some annoying pop-up ads blocking your view when you first go in, so just close these.

        Two more things to ponder:

        1. Would China risk invading Taiwan just now with the “unknown” of how a brand-new, untried US administration keen to stamp its suthority would react?

        2. China has also had some border clashes with India lately. Would they really fall for the classic mistake of potential war on two fronts?

        I don’t know any of the answers of course. I am just throwing these ponderings of mine out there to mull over.

        God bless and take care. Have a happy and holy Sunday, Pastor David. 🙂

      13. in other, completely unrelated news, I don’t know if you saw this, Pastor, but a transgender Scottish ppp star has died suddenly in an accident:

        https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sophie_(musician)

        I hope he/she was able to repent and turn to Christ before they died. 🙁 Let us take it as a warning to us all about how we are all sinners deserving of death and how any one of us could be taken at any time. God bless.

  2. “Wanting the fruits without the roots” OK and the same could be said for a not insignificant number in Christianity. “Should forget about American Christianity” – I would got further David and say forget about Christianity.

    Now before you jump down my throat, hear me out. Just as we don’t put our trust in Biden but God neither do we put our trust in Christianity but Christ. Christ wasn’t a Christian!

    If we want to see where this kind of thing can lead, we might consider Hitler’s Germany wiht Hitler’s “positive Christianity” as opposed to Bonhoeffer’s “confessional Christianity”. With Hitler Mein Kampf and the Swastika appeared alongside the bible and the cross in the German national church which predominantly was in support of Hitler.

    We might like to think that if we around at that time, we would all be rescuing Anne Frank, but statistically that would be highly unlikely.

    So ultimately what we say about America reflects on what also is true for all of us. How easy it is for us to comment and point the finger and yet how difficult it can be to earnestly pray “search me, God, and know my heart” (Ps 139:23) in the light of the recent discussion you have had with Steve about everyone being judged by Christ.

    Lord have mercy.

      1. “Thats an attempt to be too clever by half”. Possibly. At the same time your assertion “Christianity is about Christ – it is Christ” can be deconstructed as being a false equivalence.

        So it’s your blog, where do you want to go wiht this David, and I’ll respect your wishes.

  3. I feel I want to say something I just don’t know what. I’m glad you’re having these discussions, wish there was a bigger audience for you.
    Bob Dylan’s chilling words, ‘You don’t count the dead, with God on your side,’ Speaks to the abortion situation, as well as the continuing warmongering.
    Not to mention ‘the lost’.

  4. Off-topic but here is some more of the crazy stuff Rod Bower believes (or rather, doesn’t believe):

    Jesus didn’t die for our sins:

    “Progressive Christians believe that Jesus came to manifest the Kingdom. That is to reveal the Sacred in our every day life. For far too long we have been obsessed about Jesus’ death being a payment to a wrathful god for the insult of human sin…
    The Kingdom is bigger than the church, bigger than Christianity, it must be. There are Kingdom people who are Buddhists, Muslims, Jews, Hindus and atheists. You don’t have to be a Christian to be a Kingdom person, but you do have to be a Kingdom person to be a Christian.”

    https://davidould.net/rev-rod-bowers-of-gosford-jesus-didnt-die-for-our-sins-and-atheists-can-be-kingdom-people/

    “For Fr Rod Bower (@FrBower) Christmas is the “G” word, the Universal More, whispering ‘#illridewithyou’.
    December 20, 2014
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    More about Fr Rod Bower

    Fr Rod Bower
    Fr Rod Bower
    Priest at Gosford Anglican Church
    Fr Rod Bower is an Anglican priest and social activist. He has been the Parish Priest in Gosford, NSW, for 16 years and is a passionate advocate for asylum seekers, the environment, social justice and human rights.
    Fr Rod Bower
    Fr Rod Bower

    Fr Rod Bower

    Fr Rod bower Christmas message #illridewithyou
    I avoid using the ‘G’ word these days. This makes life a bit complicated for me because, well, I’m a priest and I’m expected to talk about God. The trouble is the second I do mention the ‘G’ word I’m in a no win situation.

    The difficulty is that the word comes with so much baggage. Before I get past the initial ‘g’ sound, the fundamentalists think I’m talking about their particular divinity, who apparently spends all day lying in wait to smite homosexuals, atheists and clergy who put up questionable roadside signs.

    [snip]
    My Atheist friends, of whom I have many, on the other hand assume I am referring to the deity that they have rejected, perhaps because the only option considerable is the fundamentalist version, or perhaps because the whole ‘G’ thing just doesn’t compute. Those who exist at the fundamentalist extreme of atheism accuse me of believing in ‘sky fairies’ and worshiping the “flying spaghetti monster”; all of which are totally unfamiliar to me.

    So I’m stuck, caught like a deer in the headlights, standing in the middle of the road. I just can’t stomach the fundo/literalist stuff as it offends not only my intellect (such as it is), but also my appreciation of the truth contained in myth and the beauty of poetic expression.

    [snip]

    The Atheist option, although sometimes appealing, ends up leaving me a little unsatisfied.

    [snip]

    So here I am an Anglican Christian, a priest, attempting to explore the relationship between the ‘more of myself’ and the ‘More of the Universe’ in the context of a post theistic, post doctrinal world… Here we are with the mythology and poetry of virgins and angels, carpenters and kings, and a child born, kindling hopes and expectations. ”

    https://nofibs.com.au/for-fr-rod-bower-frbower-christmas-is-the-g-word-the-universal-more-whispering-illridewithyou/

    “Rod Bower, of Gosford Anglican, tried to give some credence to Gilmore’s miss-exegesis when he claimed the Bible authors only knew of heterosexuality and nothing of homosexuality. To back up this allegation, he suggested that the Bible’s only issue with homosex is when heterosexuals are doing it. This is a very poor reading of Romans ch.1, and only few scholars would even entertain this as a possible interpretation. The phrase ‘abandoned natural relations’ (Romans 1:27) does not mean heterosexuals acting contrary to their nature. The noun phusikos is used in both Scripture and Hellenistic Jewish traditions to speak of created order. Neither Paul, nor any Bible writer, differentiates between“homosexuals” committing acts of homosex and “heterosexuals” committing homosex. Homosexual behaviour, regardless of how one might define one’s sexuality, is contrary to God’s created order, contrary to phusikos.”

    https://murraycampbell.net/tag/rod-bower/

    Why on earth won’t the church defrock him and all the Brisbane Anglicans Jean has alerted us about? He is putting souls at risk. 🙁 🙁 🙁

  5. On another Progressive “Christian” leader, Gregory Jenks, this quote from his book is telling:

    “For many traditional expressions of Christianity the religious value (and the truth-claim status) of the resurrection tradition rests on the historicity of a resurrection event. For such people there is the further assumption that such an event is an irrefutable demonstration of the divinity of Jesus.

    For many progressive Christians, neither of these assumptions hold..”

    https://davidould.net/a-new-dean-for-grafton-gregory-jenks-progressive-christianity-in-yet-another-cathedral/

    1. Yes. 🙁 🙁 🙁

      Also, here is something that I missed over Christmas that I just spotted on Rev. Ould’s site. Another Brisbane Anglican minister has come put as transgender.

      “McMahon was listed as co-chair of the Queensland branch of Equal Voices in their most recent annual report. He preached at Brisbane’s “Pride Evensong in 2019…

      The Diocese of Brisbane media machine has already been at work spinning positively for the story, using their online magazine to publicise the filming of an interview with McMahon…

      But the co-ordination of her coming-out announcement with Dr Aspinall has raised eyebrows, especially after racy photographs of Reverend McMahon in vamp guise were posted on the movie and celebrity fan website, IMDB. Contacted on Friday, Dr Aspinall’s spokeswoman could not say whether he knew of or endorsed Reverend McMahon’s provocative photo shoot.

      The Diocese of Brisbane seems to have now solidly taken the position that sex and gender are simply irrelevant to marriage. First we had the promoting of the Inkpins’ marriage as exemplary and now McMahon’s own statement (endorsed by the bishop) fudges the question in classic revisionist style.”

      Source: https://davidould.net/steve-selina-mcmahon-a-new-transgender-minister-for-the-diocese-of-brisbane/

      In the comments section there is this response from a parishioner at that church:

      “Sargeant [another commenter] has not lived through the experience of having McMahon as the Priest-in -Charge and more importantly Sargeant is not expected to finance McMahon’s lifestyle choice in the same way that the congregation of St Paul’s Ipswich are being called upon to do so by the Archbishop Phillip Aspinall. For over four years now we have been very dispairing of McMahon’s ministry. To put it bluntly, the church is dying and the rate of death has accelerated since McMahon has been in charge. When using common markers of church growth.
      My husband and I are examples of congregants who were NOT informed of the meeting that took place on 22 November 2020. We were told by the wardens that we would have received an email on the 20th informing us of the need to attend Sunday service on the 22nd, but we didn’t receive any such email. Contact with other parishioners who attended that meeting confirms that familiar faces were missing and unfamiliar faces were present. We did receive a package via the letterbox containing the 10 page explanation of McMahon’s decision and how we should be reassured. This package arrived the afternoon of the 22nd but after the meeting of the congregation. Our response was to write letters of protest (to the warden’s; Venerables and Aspinall) demanding McMahon be stood down as priest in charge. Our argument is that McMahon’s lifestyle choice cuts across the Holy Scriptures; two thousand years of Christian teaching; 500 years of Reformation theology and the basic theology underpinning the Anglican liturgy). Aspinall’s reply was that he sees no reason to stand down Steve McMahon and we should read and study diligently the 400 page report ‘Living in Love and Faith’ endorsed by the Archbishop of Canterbury. More could be said about this issue but my husband and I have come to the conclusion that we must leave St Paul’s and the diocese of Southern Qld. To stay would suggest that we endorse and support this action.”

      I applaud these parishioners for taking this difgicult, heartbreaking decision in acvordance with what is right.

      1. From an earlier article by Rev. Ould:

        “The Diocesan website of Brisbane (the “Diocese of Southern Queensland”), Anglican Focus, has published a piece promoting one of the already most well-known marriages in the Diocese, that of Penny and Josephine Inkpin. Josephine is also a male-to-female transgender person who has remained in their marriage. When Inkpin originally “came out” the Archbishop was full of praise and support…

        … Given the moment that the Anglican Church of Australia finds itself in with respect to same-sex marriage and given the Bishops’ commitment not to act unilaterally nor outside national constitutional mechanisms, it seems remarkable that the Inkpins’ marriage is so regularly publicised. It is also notable that the Archbishop recently hosted a renewal of their wedding vows in the Cathedral.

        The Diocese has taken every opportunity to promote them as a model of a marriage in ministry.

        How can any of this possibly be considered as upholding the spirit of the agreement that Archbishop Aspinall and all the other bishops signed up to? Under Archbishop Aspinall’s leadership, his Diocese has not just endorsed a same-sex marriage but held it up as an exemplar.

        The Primate carefully but clearly upholds both the doctrine and the agreed polity of the Anglican Church of Australia. Nobody expected any less of him.

        His predecessor [Aspinall] seems determined to do the exact opposite. No wonder we’re in a mess.”

        Source: https://davidould.net/primate-vs-ex-primate-the-full-spectrum-of-the-anglican-church-of-australia/

  6. Here is an earlier artivle anout McMahon preaching at the Brisbane Cathedral’s Pride service:

    “McMahon directly compares the fight for the full endorsement of homosexual activity with the great cosmic battle for good against evil of Michael the Archangel against Satan. ”

    Source: https://davidould.net/brisbane-cathedral-ends-celebration-of-pride-with-sermon-calling-for-no-more/

    This verse immeduately came to my mind:

    “Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter!” Isaiah 5:20. 🙁

    This statement in the Comments section stood out:

    “How weird they [Progressive “Christian” priests] must think the concept of loving a sinner but not their sin, and even more weird the teachings of Jesus about judgement; that bit about sheep and goats is just something to do with farm animals, isn’t it? It wouldn’t have anything to do with a modern urban culture, would it? Would it?”

    Also, the lesbian Anglican proestess at Buderim (near where I live), Moira Evers, is merging New Age and Christian practices:

    “According to Evers, the “presence of God” is something that we “create externally” and need to “concentrate on developing internal…” by in-breaths and out-breaths of “mindful breathing”. This can be helped with a “sacred word” like “calm-ease”.”

    https://davidould.net/chakras-and-compline-syncretism-in-the-diocese-of-brisbane/

    Similar things go on at the Cathedral with Christian yoga sessions, labyrnths, etc.

  7. There is a lengthy, detailed article about Rod Bower in the NY Times today:

    https://www.nytimes.com/2021/02/13/world/australia/rod-bower-profile.html

    What is interesting is that it talks a lot about his social justice theology but says NOTHING about his lack of belief in God, his Progressive “Christianity” views or his rejection of other orthodox doctrine, like the existence of heaven and hell. It is all just gixated on his woke politics, making the article dangerously biased to the casual American reader who won’t know much more about him.

  8. Another good article on Progressive “Christianity”:

    https://christianchronicle.org/is-progressive-christianity-dangerous/

    Key quotes:

    “Often progressives use biblical language, but they shift its meaning: the resurrection becomes a metaphor instead of a historic fact, holiness becomes liturgy instead of sexual purity, and the like. Same language, but new meanings.”

    “Progressivism challenges core doctrines of Christian orthodoxy. The Scriptures teach that Jesus was crucified to atone for our sins, but progressives tend to argue that Jesus’ death was merely a martyrdom. The Scriptures claim that Jesus is divine, but often progressives only emphasize the humanity of Jesus–unitarianism grew up with Western liberalism. The sinfulness of humanity is generally downplayed by progressives, who tend to think that all people are basically good and not really in need of salvation.”

    Interesting, the only people they don’t think are good are orthodox protestants, who they deeide as “fundamentalists”. 🙁

    “Progressivism is attractive to formerly biblical Christians because it offers a sort of “halfway house” that allows them to remain largely religious and socially responsible, but relieves them from the responsibility of holding to what they consider to be antiquated biblical teachings such as miracles, the authority of Scripture, sexual holiness or the sinfulness of humanity.

    But progressivism is a dead-end street. Every single progressive denomination in America is in deep decline. So, when our preachers, our Christian schools and our authors and bloggers begin to lean toward progressivism, you don’t have to guess where they will end up.

    We know where progressivism ends. It ends in disaster. We have entire denominations, scores of formerly Christian schools and countless formerly Christian organizations that started out progressive and ended up leaving the faith entirely. Progressivism leads to unbelief.”

    🙁

    1. “Often progressives use biblical language, but they shift its meaning: the resurrection becomes a metaphor instead of a historic fact, holiness becomes liturgy instead of sexual purity, and the like. Same language, but new meanings.”

      “Progressivism challenges core doctrines of Christian orthodoxy. The Scriptures teach that Jesus was crucified to atone for our sins, but progressives tend to argue that Jesus’ death was merely a martyrdom. The Scriptures claim that Jesus is divine, but often progressives only emphasize the humanity of Jesus–unitarianism grew up with Western liberalism. The sinfulness of humanity is generally downplayed by progressives, who tend to think that all people are basically good and not really in need of salvation.”

      *****

      “If you openly declare that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” Romans 10:9

      Incredible. So the Apostle Paul says here there are only two things we have to do to be saved and the Brisbane Anglican clergy willingly flunk them both and lead others to do so too. This is madness. 🙁 🙁

      1. “If you openly declare that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” Romans 10:9

        That’s the key verse, isn’t it, and there is a key phrase in that verse, “believe in your heart”. What does this phrase mean? At least in English translation, it seems to imply “physically rose”, especially when we think about in context with what Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 15:12-21:

        “Now if Christ is preached, that He has been raised from the dead, how do some among you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? But if there is no resurrection of the dead, not even Christ has been raised; and if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is vain, your faith also is vain.

        Moreover we are even found to be false witnesses of God, because we testified against God that He raised Christ, whom He did not raise, if in fact the dead are not raised. For if the dead are not raised, not even Christ has been raised; and if Christ has not been raised, your faith is worthless; you are still in your sins. Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. If we have hoped in Christ in this life only, we are of all men most to be pitied. But now Christ has been raised from the dead, the first fruits of those who are asleep. For since by a man came death, by a man also came the resurrection of the dead.”

        “Believe in your heart in this metaphorical truth” therefore makes a lot less sense. Someone who knows Biblical Greek could possibly look at this and see what they infer from the passage. However, as it stands, it seems most likely that Peter Catt and his prigressive cohort are putting their own salvation at risk: they do NOT believe in their hearts that Jesus [bodily] rose; they have relegated this truth to the realm of metaphor and apparenyly believe His physical bones still rest in Jerusalem and that He lives on in terms of His spirit or His ideals only [they are extremely vague about this]. Thereby, they are putting both themsrlves and their flocks in peril.

        Their denial of the literal resurrection of the dead and the fact that thry consist of a small, educated liberal elite and their dislike of strict morality makes me liken the Progressuve Christians to the Sadducees. than to the Pharisees.

      2. One more thought: why do the Gospels place so much stress on the tomb being empty if they are writing about the resurrection as a metaphorical or spiritual truth? The testimony of the women at the tomb, and details like the stone being rolled away, the sleeping guards, the “Doubting Thomas” story, the linens lying there, the presence of the angels, the multiple witnesses, the raising of the other dead who later went into Jerusalem, and the fact that Jesus eats at the conclusion of the Emmaus event and later cooks fish on the beach for the disciples all individually and cumulatively point to a physical, tangible bodily resurrection. These stories would be superfluous otherwise. You simply would not write in this way if you were talking about spiritual truths alone. Rather, the writers would place more emphasis on Pentecost-style events and include more stories like that or mystical encounters with a non-corporeal Jesus. Stories about a tangible body and female witnesses would be superfluous. Rather, by talking about Jesus eating, grilling fish and being touched, they go out of their way to emphasise the Resurrection is physical.

        No wonder Catt and friends find the Ascension an embarrassment. It is a superfluous story to them since they don’t believe he was bodily resurrected and therefore feel there is no need to explain what happened to that body.

        The Gospel writers go out of their way to emphasise the Resurrection was bodily and provide as much evidence as they can to prove this and Catt and friends reject such evidence and awkwardly reinterpret Scripture with their own pet theories due to their own lack of faith, arrogantly dragging their followers down to the pits of Hell with them. Why do they even bither with Jesus when they don’t believe half of what He says about sin, salvation, His claims about His identity or His teachings and prophecies about His own resurrection?

      3. Here are some of Jenks’ sermons where he explicitly rejects the idea of a bodily resurrection:

        https://gregoryjenks.com/2018/05/19/harvest-of-divine-love/

        https://gregoryjenks.com/2018/11/03/a-sure-and-certain-hope/

        Also, here are his views on the crucifixion:

        https://gregoryjenks.com/2018/03/29/rethinking-the-cross-of-jesus/

        Here is his response to the backlash the previous sermon provoked:

        https://gregoryjenks.com/2018/05/03/making-meaning-out-of-the-cross/

        He also endorses a book denying the resurrection. You can read his endorsement here:

        https://www.amazon.com/Doubting-Jesus-Resurrection-Happened-Black/dp/0982552890

      4. “Why do they even bither with Jesus when they don’t believe half of what He says about sin, salvation, His claims about His identity or His teachings and prophecies about His own resurrection?”

        Yeah I was wondering about this too. these blokes say either Jesus was wrong or the Bible was wrong with half of its claims about him. Why do they think he’s a great teacher if so much was wrong? Anyway there are lots of great moral teachers like Buddha, Confucius and Gandhi so why even adopt Jesus or make him the prime focus? Either their western bias is showing through by making him first among equals or maybe they are using him to deliberately undermine his teachings which are the teachings western civilization rests on and reinvent them in their own image.

        Anyway aside from that I’ve been thinking tonight about how Calvinism and AngloCatholicism are mirror opposites in many ways-

        *Calvinism (evangelicalism)- “masculine”, austere, opposed to ritual and theatrics, moral rigour, intellectual, of French origin.

        *AngloCatholicism- effeminate, decadent, sensual, morally quite lax, anti-intellectual, of English origin.

        IMHO I think Laudism and AngloCatholicism are the worst disasters to ever befall the English church. As we can plainly see the church is still suffering from the divisiveness they have caused to this day. Unfortunately it is the evangelicals who will probably eventually be driven out and have to form a new denomination under GAFCON’ s auspices. I am saddened things have come to this yet I am still being shocked as I read more and more about what is being preached in Brisbane and learn how far they have drifted from gospel truth. As MLJ once called evangelicals out of liberal denominations to form their own denom, perhaps this is the right time to fo so. Given Jesus’ calls for unity it must break his heart in heaven.

      5. “*Calvinism (evangelicalism)- “masculine”, austere, opposed to ritual and theatrics, moral rigour, intellectual, of French origin.

        *AngloCatholicism- effeminate, decadent, sensual, morally quite lax, anti-intellectual, of English origin.”

        Great thoughts, @Silas!

        Yes, the two forms of Anglicanism really do lie in binary opposition to each other these days, don’t they? I’ve had a go at expanding your list with even more differences between the evangelicals and the Anglo-Catholics.

        Calvinists: Low view of church, high view of scripture, emphasis on doctrinal, emphasis on sermon as central part of church service, Lord’s supper is a memorial, emphasis on scripture, ecumenical affinity with Protestants, decentralised, democratic, informal hierarchy, bishop has much less prominent role – no grandiose claims about lineal descent from apostles, scripture alone

        Anglo-Catholics: High view of church, low view of scripture, emphasis on mystery, emphasis on mass as central part of church service, mass is a re-sactifice of Christ, emphasis on ritual, ecumenical affinity with Roman Catholics, centralised, authoritarian, formal hierarchy, belief in bishops’ apostolic succession, tradition (when it suits them) and, for the liberals, human reason over God’s revealed word.

        Leaving aside the homosexual subculture that Anglo-Catholicism seems to attract wherever in the world it raises its head, Calvinism/evangelicalism just seems more mature to me. Perhaps it is because of the focus on doctrine and scripture as we seek to understand what God expects of us and is saying of us.

        If the church splits it will be a tragedy and Christ will clearly be heartbroken. However, He also warns us not to tolerate false shepherds so this is a very difficult situation that will require much discernment and prayer.

        I, for one, am glad GAFCON has moved slowly when it is a wonder the Anglican church did not split years ago. Yes, Dr Martyn Lloyd-Jones’ thoughts on evangelicals splitting from liberal denominations are probably well worth revisiting, too. I would simply urge everyone to pray about the terrible state of the Anglican Communion and leave things in God’s hands and may our leaders listen to Him with discernment when they are called upon to make decisions. God bless.

  9. One more thing I’ve found: as I mentioned before, many of the Progressive “Christianity” crowd amongst the Brisbane Anglican clergy have links to the Westar Institute, sponsirs of the “Jesus Seminar”. It turns out the Westar Institute is hawking this film on its website:

    “Filmed in New Zealand and Israel and premiered at the NZ Parliament, The Last Western Heretic explores Lloyd Geering’s worldview through a discussion of his ideas—there is no life after death, the Bible is not infallible, Jesus was not divine, among others.”

    https://www.westarinstitute.org/store/last-western-heretic/

    They are also selling the Brisbane Anglicans’ book on their site:

    https://www.westarinstitute.org/store/the-once-and-future-scriptures/

  10. A self-proclaimed Progressive Christian is attacking the Presbyterian Church of Australia on Twitter for opposing the anti- gay conversion laws:

    https://mobile.twitter.com/PeterWMurphy1/status/1363602351282475013

    He’d rather side with the government than with fellow Christians. There is no solidarity from these people…

    The rest of his Tweets are politically correct diatribes too. Progressive Christianity (PC) seems to be indistinguishable from that other form of PC. It is just SJW leftism with some ritualitlstic garb and New Age trappings. Progressive Christianity has nothing to do with Jesus Christ.

  11. I’ve been digging into Progressive Christianity a bit more. Hrre is one person’s critique of Peter Catt:

    “In describing the theological foundations of this open and generous form of the church he draws attention to narrative theology. In doing so, however, he indicates a deep unease about systematic theology. Indeed, systematic theology is something of the villain of the story. In Peter’s representation of it, systematic theology represents the authoritarian, doctrinaire style of Christianity from which narrative theology heroically rescues us.”

    It goes on to talk about their rejection of doctrine.
    and

    “Secondly, consider the doctrine of the resurrection. In his article, Peter speaks of honouring the diversity of the New Testament resurrection narratives instead of ‘harmonising them into a tidy doctrine’. Agreed. But does that mean that there can be no doctrine of the resurrection, even an untidy one? And can it really be claimed, as Peter did, that for all their unevenness and diversity, those narratives had no interest in the nature of Jesus’ risen body? True, the resurrection narratives function at many levels. But surely one of them is precisely the nature of Jesus’ body.”

    https://www.onlineopinion.com.au/view.asp?article=14760&page=0

  12. Okay, I’ve been reading one of Catt’s articles to see what he says in his own words. First of all:

    “For example, one question asks if we renounce Satan. Years ago I thought this question to be ridiculous and superstitious. Over time, as I have engaged with the faith story and its intersection with the story of human history and my life story, I have found myself moving to understanding Satan as the mob-generated and mob-inspiring presence so eloquently described by the French Catholic sociologist Rene Girard. A journey that took place through the engagement with story rather than a debate over doctrine. ”

    Wouldn’t it be nore intellectually honest to just say he doesn’t believe in the devil rather than trying to reapply it as a metaphor to simething totally different? Do this constantly and words will ultimately lose all meaning…

    I wonder if he believes in “God” in the traditional Christian sense or if he redefines that word to mean something else too? It seems like sleight of hand to me inless he defines terms everytime – an orthodox Christian audience might assume he is talking about one thing while he means something else.

    “Narrative theologians look for the story that unfolds within the Bible rather than seeing the Bible as a source for developing systematic theology.”

    It is important to note he *doesn’t* mean Progressive Revelation though, which I support.

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Progressive_revelation_(Christianity)

    After all, Progressive Revelation would accept the fact that the Bible becomes *more* doctrinal as it is inveiled – the latter writings, especially Paul, are full of doctrinal statements and emphasise the importance of doctrine.

    Rather, this narrative theology of his seems to dovetail suspiciously neatly with modern secular humanist morality.

    “Narrative theology arose during the twentieth century as a refreshing third way; an alternative to the expressions of the Christian faith offered by literalism (often called fundamentalism)”

    Confkating two terms with different meanings there, Catt. Luther, Calvin, the Antiochian School, etc, were all literalists, but not findamentalists. It seems like a blatant attempt to slur given the negative connotations associated with the word, “fundamentalism”.

    Anyway, we can take it he means anti-Protestant and anti-Reformation since the entire Pritestant project rests on a return to a literal meaning of the Bible.

    “Those who are drawn to St John’s are often intelligent and so want a faith that is intellectually honest and robust.”

    A bit arrogant but okay. However:

    “Narrative theology invites people beyond the doctrinal conundrums…”

    So it is actually *anti-*intellectual; they don’t engage with doctrine like a Calvinist or other intellectual form of Christianity would. They actively avoid it and don’t want to define their faith. They just have vague, nebulous beliefs.

    What do they believe? What God? Who is Jesus? Is He deity? There is no doctrine.

    Ultimately, it seems like “every man did that which was right in his own sight.”Judgrs 21:25 All is relative in their world and constantly shifting

    https://onlineopinion.com.au/view.asp?article=14643

  13. I found a page of comments in response to Peter Catt’s article:

    https://forum.onlineopinion.com.au/thread.asp?article=14643&page=0

    It has restored my faith in humanity somewhat due to comments like these:

    “This is perhaps the longest and most discursive apology for telling lies I have ever read.

    “Narrative theologians look for the story that unfolds within the Bible rather than seeing the Bible as a source for developing systematic theology.”

    Translation: we make up stuff that sounds good.

    Next week at St. John’s — how Jesus and Peter took the Ring to Hell, and Judas snatched it away before falling into the lake of brimstone.
    Posted by Jon J, Monday, 4 February 2013 12:08:21 PM”

    “a load of waffle that parades as intellectual but is really simply unbelief. I’ll stick to the doctors, science Proffessors, the garbage collectors, the cleaners etc and the occassional pollie who is not ashamed of the gospel of Jesus Christ. He is the Only way to salvation and any other waffle is a denial of simple truth. No wonder the Anglican church is in such a poor state. The believers still in the Anglican church must be in despair.
    Posted by runner, Monday, 4 February 2013 1:04:09 PM”


    Human beings must understand that the transcending of mortality is what they are purposed for, what they are Living for. To literally go up in a blaze of Light.
    Human beings are not alive in Earth merely to be cogs in the machine of hoped (hyped) for progress towards utopia – merely to sing their cricket song, make a baby or two, and then drop dead.
    No. There is also the impulse based on the knowledge that this human birth is a mortal condition. It is the urge to Find What Is Greater, and to be INCLUDED In That.

    When the sacred domain is suppressed, ignored, forgotten, and trivialized by the naive exoteric religiosity such as promoted by Peter Catt, human culture produces nothing but a “stage play” that goes on and on and on, even while allthe “players” keep dying. In that case, human life has no purpose greater than mere reproduction, simply for the purpose of ensuring that the “play” goes on.

    Such is merely a mortal drama, which is in no way satsfactory enough for the human heart. Human beings are heart-urged to Find What Is Greater than that, to Find a connectedness to What Is Greater than that, to participate in the Real transcending of mortality. Rather than the ersatz telling of mere stories.
    Posted by Daffy Duck, Monday, 4 February 2013 1:23:01 PM”

    I also found Catt wrote an endorsement for a book by a Brisbane Prigressive Christianity coleague named Nigel Leaves. Another reviewer describes Leaves as “the next John A. T. Robinson”.

    The same book apparently argues for a secular religion to replace outdated Christianity, Islam, etc, centred on a mysterious and unknowable god, from what I can gather from what other reviewers are saying:

    ” More importantly he offers suggestions about the necessary transformation of the great faiths into something he call secular religion that affirms the mystery, transcendence, and unknowability of God. ”

    https://www.amazon.com/product-reviews/B004XD1X9M/ref=cm_cr_othr_mb_show_all_top?ie=UTF8&reviewerType=all_reviews

    At least we can see where Progressive “Christiantiy” is heading.

    Finally, I found this really interesting comment on an atheist website:

    “In May 2015, Peter Catt, Dean of the Anglican church’s St John’s Cathedral in Brisbane wrote in an article for the Sydney Morning Herald, the ‘black armband’ view of history is necessary for healing, because confronting the horrifying past of murder and land theft is essential, albeit painful, to achieve full comprehension of and justice for the First Nations of Australia.”

    https://www.smh.com.au/opinion/black-armband-view-of-history-necessary-for-healing-20150529-ghculq.html

    Okay, so he is saying a politically biased, PC view of history, that is largely composed of distortions and falsehood – ie, lies – “is necessary for healing”.

    He seems to be making a career out of distorting and denying history – both Australian history and Biblical history – and spinning new mythsin their place to help his progressive political causes. Religion is apparently just a vehicle for him. He has no fudelity to doctrinal Christianity, truth or salvation history.

  14. I know I am at risk of over-posting but I hope you will let me get away with one more this evening, Pastor, as I found some more important information about the Progressive “Christians” by looking at what they actually preach:

    Peter Catt rejects historicity of the Ascension:

    “Both metaphor and narrative are constantly in danger of being crippled, crippled by
    what is sometimes called literalism; the desire to make things concrete. So, concrete
    thinkers look at a narrative, a story, and say that it is not true, just because it didn’t
    happen. Of course, all those wonderful childhood fables and stories, and the parables
    that Jesus told all remind us that something didn’t have to happen for the narrative
    about it to hold truth. Likewise, metaphors get crippled by us turning them into
    actualities or by the decoupling of the metaphorical meaning.
    This feast of the Ascension is one in which those dangers can be most clearly seen.
    The reading from the Acts of the Apostles has Jesus ascend bodily on a cloud into
    heaven. It’s the sort of thing that if we push it into a literalistic, concretised space
    makes us look absolutely ridiculous. And yet, we’re always doing that to the
    metaphors and the narratives that actually make the faith and set us free.”

    “makes us look absolutely ridiculous” – he seems to be more worried about how he looks in the eyes of men.

    https://drive.google.com/uc?id=1NBfb_UXBV4BZJI3USVi5_5CVVkljhSPd&export=download

    Catt promotes the idea Hell is empty:

    https://drive.google.com/file/d/17_mD6tWKq5Rzv2z1kz5aMt-XsrjiaO4y/view

    Archbishop Aspinall uses the work of the Progressive “Christian”/ Jesus Seminar theologian/atheist, John Dominic Crossan, in his Easter sermon. Drawing on their work, he presents Genesis 4 as allegory, not history:

    “They suggest that Genesis 4 summarises the agricultural revolution known to
    anthropologists and historians. It’s the story of conflict between two brothers,
    Cain a farmer, and Abel, a shepherd. Cain murders Abel, depicting the ‘desert
    blood feud(s)’ that occurred when farming began to overtake herding at the
    beginning of ‘civilization’ (Crossan, 2018, p182-3).”

    Also:

    “First, the resurrection image claims that death has been defeated. Hades, the
    personification of death is trodden under Jesus’ feet.”

    The Archbishop is misusing the term, “perdonification”, since Hades is never depicted as a person. Does he mean symbol, in which case he would e saying that he doesn’t believe Hades is a real place or spiritual state after death?

    Aside from those major points, to be fair, there is a lot I like in that sermon of Aspinall’s about de-escalating violence.

    https://theweeflea.com/2021/01/28/the-kitchen-table-33-civic-religion/

    This last one is an attack by Archbishop Aspinall on the Puritans. It is easy to see he has no love for evangelical or Calvinistic-leaning Anglicans. I presume Sydney Anglicans are his major target:

    https://drive.google.com/file/d/1GwYwXJXdXAxsv51IN6h0hABIUKZ8m9ku/view

    1. ‘This last one is an attack by Archbishop Aspinall on the Puritans. It is easy to see he has no love for evangelical or Calvinistic-leaning Anglicans. I presume Sydney Anglicans are his major target’

      You are quite correct. Archbishop Philip Aspinall despises evangelicals and puritans. His disdain for Archbishop George Carey was well known as is his intense dislike for Sydney Anglicans and Moore College. He is firmly in the liberal catholic camp and was a great bedfellow of Rowan Williams and John Shelby Spong.

  15. …and another Brisbane Anglican, the Rev’d Dr Ann Solari, is preaching blatant Marcionism in the Cathedral:

    “The god at the beginning of the Noah story tries to solve the
    problem of human disobedience and violence by inflicting death and
    destruction, by drowning nearly all of creation. Is this god the same
    as the god at the end of the story who promises never to do it again?

    Or could there be two different gods? Could there be the true God
    who has been revealed to us in Christ Jesus, a God who is love and
    nonviolence, a God who has made a lasting covenant with us, a God
    who can be distinguished from the false gods of our human
    evolution, false gods typified in flood myths from across the globe?

    Could it be that Christ’s suffering, Christ’s death on the cross,
    reveals to us that gods who inflict genocidal floods on the whole of
    creation are false gods? Could it be that the gods who in every
    culture inflict violence on us to stop us being violent are false gods?
    Could it be that the God who places a rainbow covenant in the sky,
    as a promise never to try to solve the problem of violence by
    inflicting more violence, is the God we meet in Christ?

    If we cannot see that the god who kills everyone with a flood is a
    false god created by human culture then we risk losing the
    revelation of God in Christ. If we cannot see that the god who kills
    everyone with a flood is a false god created by human culture we
    risk never knowing the God revealed to us in the rainbow promise.”

    https://drive.google.com/file/d/1BysgBoCmaQTXiIM8Fk-nOwsNMUP4atug/view

    1. A very disturbing find. I wonder if Ann Solari believes there are literally two gods – meaning the bad one is presumably a bit like the gnostic demiurge – or whether she means the bad one is a human construct created by some of the writers of the Bible misunderstanding God’s nature. This would reflect the very low view of scripture the progressives have. How does she know which strand of scriptural tradition is right then? Maybe her bad god is the correct one that really exists!

      If she really believes there are two conflicting gods, this stands in opposition to Catt’s anti-Manichean views, below.

    2. Thinking about it some more, it is also unusual because when people argue that Genesis is a composite document consisting of strands from various oral traditions, they don’t usually argue that the combination of different strands all occurs in the same stpry. Here though, Ann Solari seems to be arguing there was a story about a “bad god” who flooded the world and then the story has been subverted by someone else tacking on a happy ending involving a “good God”, rainbows and doves. I’ve never ever heard that argument before even from the most liberal sources I’ve encountered. The story says a lot about Solari’s view of humanity, too: apparently we are not evil and sinful enough to be deserving of death by God’s judgement.

      If, on the other hand, she really believes there is a good God and a bad god, she is not quite a gnostic either since both her good God and her bad god are comfortable with interacting with the material realm. Maybe she thinks the bad god created chaos and then the good God embodied an ordering principle as per the Catt quote below. That would explain why one brings floods and the other brings rainbows. Either that or she is just barmy…

    3. With regard to Solari, I am worried that she is calling good evil (Isaiah 5:20). Of course drowning the world is not good from our perspective but God, by definition, is the embodiment of good. The point is she seems to have trouble reconciling his goodness with this action of judgement. She’d be better looking to Job and understanding we are not to judge God’s ways. She also needs to realise we are all deserving of death and God had provided a very long period of time for the Antediluvians to repent.

      Otherwise, it is a little like accusing Jesus of being able to achieve His actions of driving out evil through the forces of evil (Luke 11:14-23) – she is saying an evil god is driving evil from the face of the earth!

      1. Your recent Tweet is a good response to Priestess Solari too-

        @theweeflea

        “If God is wiser than we His judgement must differ from ours on many things, and not least on good and evil. What seems to us good may therefore not be good in His eyes, and what seems to us evil may not be evil.” (C S Lewis – The Problem of Pain).

      2. Professor Rodney Wolff “rants” (to use his own word) against Margaret Court:

        https://drive.google.com/file/d/1A1UP6rJ1WNfrZcx6q0r5FNp12K8rzbOk/view

        There is so much wrong with this sermon, I don’t know where to start. Perhaps most irksome for me, though, is Wolff’s belief you can’t separate sport and politics. Then there is Wolff’s surprise that he would preach on Leviticus, his attack on the ACL and, of course, his repudiation of Court’s views. What a mess of sermon. It is indeed a “rant”, Professor Wolff.

      3. Dave, Rodney Wolff is the current priest-in-charge of Fortitude Valley, a very “hay” parish in Brisbane’s red light district.

        It is worth looking at the Diocesan newspaper too, to see what views Anglican Church Southern Queenskand leaders espouse. For instance:

        “It is also worth noting that the Catholic Church itself undertook serious reform at the Council of Trent (1545-1563), if not exactly along the lines that Luther envisaged.”

        https://anglicanfocus.org.au/2019/10/28/reformation-day/

        Aside from being the understatement of the century tegarding Luther, articles like this point to the Diocese’s Counter-Reformational sympathies, hence all of the love for Ignatius and the Jesuits and palpable hatred for Jean Calvin.

        “It is perhaps what John Calvin, with an ironclad view of God’s providential ‘decree’ might have said, for “not a sparrow falls to the ground without the will of your Father” (Matthew 10.29). That is not good news for any of us. When God is a magistrate, everyone gets their just deserts.”

        https://anglicanfocus.org.au/2019/08/21/sunday-devotion-25-august-2019-eleventh-sunday-after-pentecost/

        Good to attack the “myth of merit” as per the article title but the priest, Chris Tyack, gives a distirted view of Calvin’s theology. They do not mention grace, perseverance of saints or predestination at all They imply Calvin believed in merit, the exact opposite of what he preached!!!

        Finally, there is this new article by Bishop Jeremy Greaves:

        “The four C’s of the HeartEdge approach to mission are a really helpful way for us to re-imagine mission for whatever context we are in. The four C’s are:

        Commerce: Generating finance via enterprise and creatively extending mission.
        Culture: Art, music, performance and re-imagining the Christian narrative for the present.
        Congregation: Inclusive liturgy, worship and common life.
        Compassion: Empowering congregations to address social need.”

        https://anglicanfocus.org.au/2021/02/26/heartedge-commerce-culture-congregation-and-compassion/

        It is interesting that Commerce is listed first which says something about the Diocese’s priorities. We all know what they mean by the “re-imagining the Christian narrative” and “Inclusive liturgy” buzzwords. 🙁

        As for the Anglican Parish of Kilcoy, ueah it was in a mess, not just due to the priest-in-charge but due tobthe attitude of the parishioners. For instance, I have it on good authority many parishioners were opposed to the Royal Commission and would have preferred it covered up. It is a very Anglo-Catholic rural parish and they are very hostile to Calvinism out there too. They were the first parish to sign an ecumenical agreement with their local Roman Catholic counterpart. There has been some bullying and misconduct out there. The country folk have a strange attitude and are not the salt of the earth types you would expect. I think their Anglo-Catholicism is part if the reason for them being that way. Blessings.

      4. While we are at it, Richard Fay revmcently downplayed the role of God in inspiring scripture and rejects the doctrines of total depravity and original sin.

        https://drive.google.com/file/d/1daMot0x3T5YcGiA9fKuW-qKoEEG-3OVJ/view

        Kate Ross thinks the non-Christians Muhammad and Greta Thunberg are prophets speaking to us.

        https://drive.google.com/file/d/11efDE4b2KI7cY6O9SC5h6jYX4cvgVDV3/view

        She also has some gender drivel for us.

        https://drive.google.com/file/d/1s-sp0tmyaAIlwY_r_OaJUg4e3Jeyd5UA/view

        I am not so sure about this one. It is more interesting.

        https://drive.google.com/file/d/117-spT2Ev6GfYEPUvjF0Sjq0aDrx8A_Z/view

        Leaving aside the fact that it is, as Ross admits, a feast inaugurated by Pope Pius XI, she makes some good points that Christ’s kingship comes from utter humility which is a great point.

        However, she is clearly also uncomfortable with Christ’s absolute sovereignty, the gendered language of kingship and the monarchical idea that He reigns above us all and that we are His subjects. She seems to have difficulty in reconciling the idea that absolute sovereignty and absolute love can co-exist simultaneously in our Lord, Jesus Christ.

        Tyack believes we are living in a post-Reformation era in which we need to think more about how we live a good life and less about how we are saved.

        https://drive.google.com/file/d/1FZIi1pXp6XDXr1iR4Ya7CWSt449A3__v/view

        Catt bizarrely conflates pacifism (an ethical ideology) with not having any angry thoughts at all!

        https://drive.google.com/file/d/195e5UgN3Ab5aLWTsZAyuAVRo_4Yu9QNO/view

        Having said that, I have seen Catt in very angry moods. He lives in his own strange little world of self-delusion.

        Catt rants about the sexism in this Gospel story.

        https://drive.google.com/file/d/1bejYZBv-L6on00VDKECe1xynQlCYLO8c/view

        He longs for a future utopian (to him) world where prejudice on the basis of gender identity and sexuality are challenged. It sounds an awful lot like the nightmarish authoritarian liberal world of bullying of Christians we are living in at the moment but then again, Catt denies Christians in Brisbane are being persecuted. A strange little world indeed that this angry, eccentric little man inhabits.

  16. Those are great discoveries, Dave. I didn’t know about the Marcionite proestess or the Progressive “Christians'” alleged aim of eventualy creating a new secular religion. They still have the power to shock me.

    It is interesting to see them cite Pope Francis and liberal Jesuits a few times in some of their Cathedral sermons too, showing their liberal Catholic roots.

    Definitely anti-intwllectual too with their rejection of doctrine and vonstant citing of trendy, fringe-thinker, pop theologians like Borg and Crossan from their Westar-oriented world.

    I’d like to engage with one point from the very first article you cited:

    ” In Peter’s representation of it, systematic theology represents the authoritarian, doctrinaire style of Christianity from which narrative theology heroically rescues us.”

    Although Peter Catt may rail against authoritarian Christianity like his hero, Marcus Borg, what they are obviously creating is a syncretist free-for-all, with Marcionism, New Age and eastern elements, etc. Everything is acceptable in this grab bag secular religion except Puritanism/Protestantism.

    Ironically, although they may present themselves as anti-authoritarian in theological terms, in orgsnisational terms, the Brisbane Anglicans are highly authoritarian. Parish priests have less autonomy than they do in Sydney or Tasmania and I know some who live in fear of saying the wrong thing and being reported to the bishop, hence they are wary of publishing their sermons online and evangelising the wider public by reaching a potential worldwide audience, for instance.

    The Diocese also has an army of lawyers and vlose links to the legal fraternity and is not afraid to use the police against protesters. As much as Peter Catt might pretend to be anti-establishment, he is in denial. He is very much part of the establishment and he and Aspinall are liberal authoritarians. I applaud those who “speak truth to power” against these two men and their cohort. They are as much hypocrites in their own way as Ravi Zacharias was.

    Ultimately it is all about power for Aspinall, Catt and friends, no matter how they want to dress it up. Notice not one of those sermons talks about how to be saved and, as you noted, they wilfully reject the two things Paul tells us we need to do: acknowledge publicly that Jesus is Lord and truly believe in the resurrection in our hearts. Rather, like Borg, they have a vague, nebulous belief in the hereafter so therefore fixate on progressive politics in the hopes of creating a utopia on earth. It is all they have. They are more interested in power than saving souls.

    Blessings.

    1. @Jean It is like nightmarish alternative world. How did it ever come to this?

      Okay, Pastor, I will try to be a good boy today and limit myself to one post as you have requested of people. Here we go.

      Catt argues against the doctrine of limited atonement
      , describing it as a “tragedy”:
      https://drive.google.com/file/d/1DCpGrkRLJKmQQ_BC4uApLGIIpJ1g8qaA/view

      Rather than testing the Canaanite woman, Jesus “learns from her” about God according to Catt:

      https://drive.google.com/file/d/172iPqgSTrn47wuNFRsbIUk1A6PXicX-v/view

      The story of Leah ruffles Peter Catt’s ultra-politically correct sensibilities from its “privileged” framing yo its treatment of women:

      https://drive.google.com/file/d/1bejYZBv-L6on00VDKECe1xynQlCYLO8c/view

      Catt rejects the idea God had a plan for the crucifixion. He thereby undermines notions of God’s sovereignty and omnipotence, predestination and the enture idea of salvation history. Instead he promotes human agency and trust in our own action and descrubes those who trust in God as false prophets… (Pot calling kettle black there, Peter? I can’t believe his sheer audacity and gall!)

      https://drive.google.com/file/d/1KZmIz6wuDwFQ8OpxDFKvzJ1GaKwVLurY/view

      Catt rants against Christ being called king, even though the very point is that Christ undermines traditional notions of kingship… Interesting, since he is a powerful member of the establishment himself but seems to deny it.

      https://drive.google.com/file/d/1-GMIA8qglYGRbwERNPizkzLJ-PG36bbP/view

      Catt rants about talking “truth to power”, probably his most blatant act of hypocrisy, since, by all accounts, he hates it when people do it to him:

      https://drive.google.com/file/d/1psy1WNV7fqHNM_m9s_8cZlv40fO-NCzt/view

      My goodness, these Anglo-Catholics love their buildings. This is reflected in other sermons by Catt sych as one about the bells at Maryborough but this one takes the cake:

      https://drive.google.com/file/d/1KWau5nBvcUYliN0CWGmNNbgOgxS0RfoN/view

      Promoting “stolen generations” fraud:

      https://drive.google.com/file/d/1zvJCCH1wQgn14ajRKeCvYUz90ZEhWOSR/view

      How many “stolen” children would be dead at the hands of their alcoholic and abusive parents if not taken away to safety, Peter Catt? It is interesting that ministers I know, who have actually worked long-term with Aborigines and devoted much of their careers to pastoral care and Christ’s witnesses for them, see things in exactly the opposite light from Peter Catt. This just sounds like more point scoring ftom him to further his political agenda; either that or he is so biased in his politics that he is blind to the truth.

      One thing that strikes me is the only sins he ever talks about are cultural and social issues, for which he inevitably takes the PC route while, at the same time, ignoring his own position of power and authority. He pretends to be an underdog when he is very much an establishment figure as @Jean points out. 🙁

      Waffles on about yoga and labyrinths and uses the term “Godself” because he cannot bring himself to say “Himself”:

      https://drive.google.com/file/d/1Sbw3IVfUZo-zyohS-zR4_GfsATO4w8Qb/view

      He is so PC he calls Australia “inheremtly xenophobic”, a very questionable judgement at best:

      https://drive.google.com/file/d/1PdemH-KkAM6w5s3CcqR7c27F85gJ8fGM/view

      Some of Peter Catt’s other sermons I am finding are contradictiry. Like Aspinall, he praises non-violence, which is great but he also loves Anzac Day and speaks very highly of the military. He tries to have it both ways. Shows what an establishment figure he is – he can’t really commit to the radical implications of the non-violence he claims to embrace.

      This one is interesting. Ann Solari argues the destruction of the Second Temple was not willed by God, so by implication, it was not part of His divine plan:

      https://drive.google.com/file/d/1GumNg7JiawnmLqyyVJhPCuIAehMkS4jZ/view

      Catt doesn’t like the “misogynistic” texts in the Bible so tries to rethink them…

      https://drive.google.com/file/d/1BBh-ag7RFG7rmH-20BsaUhr9LZZuQBI7/view

      Preaching on Chardin and Jesuism in general. I’ve noticed a few other sermons on there that I haven’t included here are cite Jesuits too. Man, these Brisbane Anglicans must loathe Protestants. 🙁

      https://drive.google.com/file/d/0BzzEexwPHeU8Wk9wbEphMG9wRzQ/view

      https://drive.google.com/file/d/1ogQFtUumUGDNbeHLTAjge-QXmIbyMg_u/view

      At least Peter Catt rejects works-righteousness here but focuses on the inner srlf instead of justification by grace alone through faith alone:

      https://drive.google.com/file/d/16rHTetCQunK3vfReggLiST3E71SFMrug/view

      This priest, Graham Warren, talks about the ideas of the New Ager, Maslow, of Esalen Institute infamy, and his now-discredited hierarchy of needs, in his sermon:

      https://drive.google.com/file/d/1F3yJ01F-sSrlsQE_hgLFUcFYhz8QqL-4/view

      It just gets sicker and sicker. Here is Peter Catt’s gay pride evensong sermon:

      https://drive.google.com/file/d/1N6ijNUsFeKNPF09ELte2wCw58-P84MF3/view

      Furthermore, here is Bishop Jeremy Greaves’ gay pride sermon:

      https://drive.google.com/file/d/0BzzEexwPHeU8Zm00RDJqWUU0NEE/view

  17. A few more

    Interesting Peter Catt hrre claims he does identify as an “avowed pacifist” here when Jean notes she has never seen him at any pacifist events and he has never reachrd out to support the Anglican pacifists in Brisbane:

    https://drive.google.com/file/d/195e5UgN3Ab5aLWTsZAyuAVRo_4Yu9QNO/view

    Also interesting that he loves Anzac Day and the military, so he would probably just be a handicap to @Jean’s work with his lack of commitment and heretical theology.

    Finally, here is another Pride evensong sermon by Peter Catt. This is why biologists-turned-priests should not pose as literary theorists or critical theory students. He really doesn’t grasp Derrida very well at all:

    https://drive.google.com/file/d/1t72JXzdNOckCbpPug0GoGT63OGCEnCky/view

    His grasp of narrative theory isn’t great in other sermons either. Nevertheless, let’s not distract ourselves from the fact he is blatantly promoting the sin of homosexual sex again here.

    Absolutely disgusting. He and the other clergy have turned the cathedral into a witness for the devil he doesn’t even believe in.

  18. Bravo for calling out Aspinall, Catt and their cathedral cohort! Peter Catt uses honeyed words but he is, in truth a power-hungry bully and a hypocrite in my experience of him.

    He simply doesn’t care about abused kids for insyltance, in my experience. He likes to play the underdog and claim he is speaking truth to power as you note but he is also capable of ruthlessly using his power and that of the state and media when he wants to. Yes, he and the other APCVA people are inventing a new religion in his own image.

    BTW, you might be interested in this Tweet. The Rev’d Jo Inkpin has updated the Lord’s Prayer because he claims Jesus’ version is too “patriachial/paternal/problematic” for today.

    https://mobile.twitter.com/blessedimp/status/1361802401246679041

    1. Hi, I echo these comments. Thank you for speaking out against what is going on in Anglican Church Southern Queensland. Pastor, perhaps you could pass this information on to Rev. Ould to assess? (He’s probably already across most of it.)

      It is interesting to see Catt claiming to be a pacifist and hoping it eould make him a peaceful person in this one:

      https://drive.google.com/file/d/195e5UgN3Ab5aLWTsZAyuAVRo_4Yu9QNO/view

      Peter Catt in reality is much more of ab establishmment figure than he lets on and endorses Anzac Day and navy services. I have also seen Peter Catt angry and bullying – the realiylty is he is far different tjan he claims in that sermon. He didn’t just discover a murderous side to his nature in protection of his child. He has a true anger and hatred of theological opponents. I have been a witness to it.

      There is also an incredible amount of arrogance to the Brisbane Angkican establishment figures you name. There has to be in order for them to be prepared to overturn 2000 years if orthodox Christian teaching and recreate the teligion in thrir own image to suit the social mores of our day. Make no mistake: there is nothing Christian about progressive christianity.

      It is interesting toothat these Anglo-Catholics claim they love tradition and the Doctors of the Early Church but blithely ignore, say, Irenaeus on heresies when it suits them and allow that woman to preach about an evil god who caused the flood or allow John Shelby Spong to spout his nonsense in the church, all whilst condemning the puritans and the reformers.

      Please pray for Anglican Church Southern Queensland that she may be rescurled before it is too late.! Christ be with you, Pastor.

      1. Here is some generalised info foryou all on progressive christianity. The first piece is from an Edinburgh-trained theologian:

        https://rts.edu/resources/what-is-progressive-christianity/

        https://www.beliefnet.com/faiths/christianity/the-dangers-of-progressive-christianity.aspx

        https://www.standupforthetruth.com/2013/03/six-ways-progressive-theology-is-destroying-christianity/

        Now here is Gregory Jenks’ very low view of the Bible from Peter Catt’s group’s website:

        https://www.progressivechristians.org.au/articles/the-myth-of-an-infallible-bible

        Of course, to the progressive christians, like the Communists before them, *everything* is political, inclufing the domestic sphere.

        https://www.progressivechristians.org.au/podcast/the-domestic-is-political

        Conversion practices bill:

        https://www.progressivechristians.org.au/submissions/conversion-practices-prohibition-bill

        How the Bible is a series of myths misrepresented as historical certainties (it’s funny how only the fringe figures that make up the progressive christians are enlightened enough to see this and all the mainstream theologians and great church figures down the ages have been deluded on this matter):

        https://www.progressivechristians.org.au/podcast/toxic-or-liberating

        Catt’s oh-so-pc rant against Australia Day:

        https://www.progressivechristians.org.au/articles/australia-day-the-need-for-a-national-conversation

        Blaming male headship for domestic violence:

        https://www.progressivechristians.org.au/articles/male-headship-power-control-and-domestic-violence

        Calls ACL liars and supports Brother Roger of Taize (so they like Calvinists when it suits them):

        https://www.progressivechristians.org.au/articles/trust-alibis-and-the-pursuit-of-justice

        The Great Barrier Reef and its creatures are our “neighbours”:

        https://www.progressivechristians.org.au/mediarelease/media-release-progressive-christians-oppose-adani-mine

        This is just a broad inside into some of their ideas that hives an insight on how they want to recreate Christianity in their own image. God bless you in your work, Pastor.

    2. BTW, it is interesting that Catt is blaming the doctrine of male headship for domestic violence in the church when the ABC’s report on that claim was debunked by the station’s very own Media Watch show.

      The eccentric, angry, arrogant, hypocriyical little man that is Dean Peter Catt is very selective with his evidence. He is as biased with that as he is with his politics, his doctrines and his theatrical protests.

  19. Thank you for coursgeously speaking out. I started to write a comment taking apart this breathtakingly arrogant and wrong-headed article by the anti-intellectual, Peter Catt, but I lost it due to an internet timeout:

    https://anglicanfocus.org.au/2019/07/11/how-the-church-is-marginalising-itself-and-blames-everybody-else/

    I’ll just rewrite some of the main points:

    “As the Israel Folau case illustrates, there is a narrative developing that interprets resistance to the furthering of the destructive practices as religious persecution. Religious persecution is a very serious matter, a matter of life and death for many Christians and people of other faiths throughout the world. To align oneself with them, because one’s teaching about women being subservient to men or the proclamation of approaches to human sexuality that lead to increased rates of youth suicide, is being called out as self-indulgent and trivialises the plight of those who are genuinely threatened for holding to their faith.” This shows just how arrogant and out of touch he really is. Poor, working class peolle are losing their jobs in this very society and Peter Catt has the temerity to call them self-indulgent! That really sickens me more than anything else he has written in this article. It is also interesting yo see the progtessive christians have more in common with atheists than with their brothers and sisters in Christ. They have yoked themselves to the world.

    “The destructive pattern is repeating itself as the church tries to deal with gender roles. Again, a particular way of using the Bible has people determined to protect culturally bound stereotypes as divine fiat. And while much of the church has found a way to move on and to be enhanced by the leadership of women, in other places men can only be taught by men, and men are required to be the leaders of churches and heads of households. Once again, the lessons from science and societal evolution are cast aside and many in the church portray themselves as social Neanderthals who think of women as literally the “weaker sex”.” Women “literally” are the weaker sex, Catt… Given the awful standard of women priests like the marcionist Ann Solari in Anglican Church Southern Queensland to name but one and the various radical feminists in the Uniting Church of Australia I’d say the Anglican Diocese of Sydney, the Roman Cathoĺic Church, the Lutheran Church and thee Presbyterian Church are onto a winner by doing what the Bible says and sticking with male ministers only.

    “In terms of the mission of the church, the perception that Christians don’t take science seriously and are given over to reality-denying ideologies is incredibly detrimental. It causes people to look for meaning, direction and purpose elsewhere. The growth of “the spiritual but not religious” group is partly an expression of this.” Evidence of causal link please? If anuthing, it is smaller, more Biblically-faithful churches that are growing at the expense of the larger ones. Anyway, he puts reason, built on shifting sands, above divine revelation, unsurprising given his low view of scripture and “creative” reinterpretations of the trxt. If he were one of my lit students at uni, I’d flunk him for his very poor and eccentric understanding of how to interpret texts. He doesn’t seem to understand our modern appeoaches well at all.

    “….many in the church portray themselves as social Neanderthals” Again, arrogant name-calling, ironically from a priest who is resolutely anti-intellectual. It seems Catt is more concerned about what the workd thinks of him than of fidelity to God’s word.

    “…and Creation Magazine these days caters to a small niche market, and while the bulk of Christians have moved on from a dogmatic and narrow reading of the Creation stories, that same way of using the Bible has been repeated again and again.” I know two major, mainstream denominations, neither of them fundamentalist, that subscribe to this magazine and distribute it to their parishes, Catt.

    “In these places, the Bible is taken seriously but is also understood to be a complex set of documents. These communities are sensitive to the fact that for the bulk of Christian history the Bible has been read in a variety of ways, and that modern biblical scholarship provides a way to use these complex documents to speak a life-giving word to a complex world.” Well, the millions upon millions of Protestants emerging from the Reformation apparently foundva literal reading life-giving. If they are such complex documents, how did the original audiences of agrarian peasants and Roman slaves understandvthem? How did the Antiochian School, which held to a literal interpretation, rise to prominence so early? How did Irenaeus, trained by Polycarp, who was trained by the Apostle John, get it so badly wrong in reading the creation literally to the point where he was arguing in detail about how a serpent could talk? How did Doctir Martin Luther and Jean Calvin so badly misunderstand things that only now fringe scholars like Catt and his Westar friends can enlighten us on?

    “…to advance arguments that were both untrue and profoundly damaging.” Of course, you wouldn’t do that, would you, Catt? Remember this derided piece you wrote with Edser, with its untruths?

    https://www.smh.com.au/opinion/christian-australia-is-ready-for-marriage-equality-20150816-gj0dcf.html

    and its rebuttal:

    https://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/national/queensland/christianity-has-no-room-for-homosexuality-20150820-gj3feh.html

    Moving on…

    “In these communities, people of goodwill are seeking to be a positive and progressive influence on their communities.” In Catt’s simplistic view of the world, progressive = good and orthodox = bad.

    “Confronting poverty, pursuing the way of peace, building a just world, setting people free from the things that bind them, looking after the planet and dealing with climate change are all issues that the depth of Christian theology and spirituality can help the human family address.” Not at the expense of teaching us about sin, repentance and salvation. The cost is too high.

    This article is “interesting” too:

    https://hope1032.com.au/stories/life/news/2017/christian-group-launched-to-argue-the-yes-case/

    “He said that while he respects traditional church teaching on marriage, it is not a view he holds.” Not the sense I received from the last article.

    “Asked about the Biblical and traditional view that marriage was closely linked to the creation and care of children, Dr Catt said that children were less significant as a purpose for marriage than previously, adding that due to overpopulation and global warming a time might come when we would “celebrate” couples who chose not to have children.”

  20. A second post for the day, if I am allowed. I won’t post tomorrow to make up for posting twice today:

    I found this book by another Westar fringe theologian:

    https://www.westarinstitute.org/store/the-problem-with-god/

    “The theist claims to believe that there exists an all-powerful, willful, immortal and profoundly benevolent entity whom we call God and who is the creator of the universe and everything in it. The atheist asserts that no such entity exists and that the universe is the product of natural and scientifically discoverable forces. The agnostic claims to be unsure, one way or the other, and awaits further evidence. Peter Steinberger will argue that each of these positions is incoherent. With respect to God, there is only one position that makes sense, only one position that’s possible for us coherently to adopt. Steinberger calls it aprolepticism, and he will suggest that we should all be—and, indeed, already are—aproleptics. ”

    According to a Uniting Church progressive christianity forum “aprolepticism [is] what he [Steinberger] calls ‘the idea of not having an idea’ – about God – because we are not talking about something real, that conforms to ’cause and effect’.”

    Some more articles from that Uniting Church progressive christianity site:

    “One would expect to find doctrinal progressivism being the choice of young people having, as they do, lives of several decades ahead of them. The sad observation, though, is that it is the more mature folk who are drawn to this more open way of fitting religious faith to the 21st century environment. Indeed, to the extent that they are drawn to Christian faith, fundamentalism seems to win in the appeal to the young. An explanation of this contrast may be that thinking, older people… are finding that the suppositions behind orthodoxy do not fit their experience and realities of the current intellectual age.”

    My alternative hypothesis is that it is attractive to the rebellious hippy generation of the 1960s and 1970s who also seem to be in a timewarp with regard to outdated radical structuralist readings of the Bible and “death of the author” theories that are only a footnote in academia now.

    That is good news, because it means progressive christianity will die off with these hippies over the next 2 or 3 decades and orthodoxy will reassert itself.

    “… share experiences of their faith in something beyond orthodoxy?” So they are promoting themselves to the young as “beyond orthodoxy” rather than just as “unorthodox”, “heterodox” or “heretical”… More honesty and less marketing spin next time, please.

    This next article features the current 8 points of progressive christianity. I’ll just look at three of them.

    https://ucforum.unitingchurch.org.au/?p=3680

    “Believe that following the path of the teacher Jesus can lead to healing and wholeness, a mystical connection to “God,” as well as an awareness and experience of not only the Sacred, but the Oneness and Unity of all life;” Okay, so He is called teacher (rabbi), not Lord, Messiah, Christ or Son of God. I presume this was a deliberate choice to deny Christ His divinity.

    “Affirm that the teachings of Jesus provide but one of many ways to experience “God,” the Sacredness, Oneness and Unity of life, and that we can draw from diverse sources of wisdom, including Earth, in our spiritual journey;” Okay but if you reject Jesus’ statement that He is the only way to God, why do you follow Him as a teacher at all? You clearly think He was mistaken on that point what makes you think His other teachings are correct? Why and how do you pick and choose which of Jesus’ teachings you feel like following? Do you mean Earth contains wisdom in a literal or figurative sense (ie, by worshipping Gaiea or do you just mean something more prosaic like observing nature? If the latter, how is this different ftom ancient druidic and Norse nature festivals? Is there a difference? How is it different, if at all, from New Ageism and neo-paganism?)

    “Seek and create community that is inclusive of ALL people, including but not limited to:
    Conventional Christians and questioning skeptics,
    Believers and agnostics,
    Those of all races, cultures, and nationalities
    Those of all sexual orientations and all gender identities,
    Those of all classes and abilities,
    Those historically marginalized,
    All creatures and plant life;” Right, so you want to yoke yourself with unbelievers. What happens if they eventually turn on you? Do you preach repentance of sin to them? Your teacher Jesus said He came to those prople but as a physician for we are sick. Are you reaching out to those peolle to help them and heal them or don’t you think they are unwell in their sexual sin? Your teacher Jesus told the woman caught in aduktery to go and sin no more, so repentance is part of His teachings. How come, by your own admission, you are NOT appealing to all classes and ages but only oldr, kidfle class people. Why don’t the young and the poor, disenfranchised working classes want anything to do with your ideas?

    One more article:

    https://ucforum.unitingchurch.org.au/?p=3609

    “A difficult problem when reflecting on Jesus, lies in the variety of references to him that appear in the gospels. Some of this difficulty is in choosing which of the references might be genuinely from Jesus, and which can be claimed as reflecting the life of the young church in what we deem to be four contexts. As we are aware, the gospel, in its differing accounts, appears some 40-80 years after his death.”

    Even if we accept this, why do some progressive christians rely on the later Gnostic Gospels then?

    “This transformation is entirely consistent with having a major mystical experience, probably just before His Ministry began.” This kind of speculation without any textual evidence is more reminiscent of what one might read on a Star Trek or Star Wars fan forum, than what one associates with serious religious thinkers.

    “More emphasis is placed on love instead of dictating the way people should behave— two commandments instead of ten (MATH 22:37 to MATH 22:40). ” Have these people actually read the Gospels? It seems progressive christians have comprehension difficulties. The two commandments form the basis upon which the other eight are built. Jesus places more rigorous requirementsvon the way people should behave – from not looking with lust, to not using weapons to not feeling anger.

    “He now emphasized the importance of experience over teaching and the universal rather than the particular. ” He was debating with pharisees and sadducees, teaching crowds and delivering sermons and using parables to instruct his apostles.

    “We are encouraged to seek the mystical because through that we can know exactly what we are supposed to do. All that remains is to discover what is the best way for you ,I and other people to do it!!!” Vague, nebulous New Age mumbo-jumbo.

    “The underlying storyline in the New testament contains an unstated assertion of Jesus as an enabler of presence – a presence shrouded in mystery that continues. …” More mumbo-jumbo.

    ” In his time blindness was widespread but Jesus responds, and the blind man discovers a new way for recognizing life” Do you think he is literally or figuratively healed of his blindness, or as has been traditionally been taught by orthodox Christians, both? I can’t tell from this ambiguous sentence.

    “Much of this has been lost or sidelined as believers look heavenward for a glimpse of the Son of God.” Maybe but apparently it hasn’t been too bad or they wouldn’t be believers. It seems like the problem lies more with you sincevyou don’t seem to be a believer in any meaningful sense, sadly.

    “Geza Vermes, The Authentic Gospel of Jesus, in response to a question asking, how can we improve our understanding of Jesus, writes: “Look for what Jesus himself taught instead of being satisfied with what has been taught about him”.” A pity Geza didn’t do this himself then, since he denied what Jesus taught about His identity. “Whoever has seen Me has seen the Father”, Geza. 🙁

    Okay, that is more than enough for one night. The progressive christians are so anti-intellectual and their ideas and arguments are so full of flaws that they actually present a very soft target.

  21. Bah, here isa little moreThey’ve decideto write a new creed.

    https://ucforum.unitingchurch.org.au/?p=3669

    God is a [impersonal?] “creative force”

    Jesus was a human who “embodied the power of this force;
    extraordinarily able to grasp its meaning,” (they don’t say how)

    “Jesus was rejected and killed.
    But death did not silence his voice.

    Evil will not eradicate the good that
    he showed us, a good that
    lives in us and through us.” So no resurrection, just his legacy and voice living on…

    Poorly written, wishy-washy trash.

    From the comments section of tjis page:

    https://ucforum.unitingchurch.org.au/?p=3676

    “That Chalcedonic formula “perfect in deity and perfect in humanity”, expressed a fixation on God’s perfection that was to dog the church for centuries to come….with competition between the two centres of theology, North Africa and Constantinople over whose Christ was more perfect.”

    I believe it was Aquinas who argued that a being who not perfect would not be God, by definition.

    Okay, I definitely won’t post for a few days now. My typing accuracy on this phone I’m borrowing is deteriorating more and more as the night hoes on anyway.

  22. That is a great exposé, @Dave. Don’t worry about your typos; I’m just as bad when I’m on my phone (luckily I’m on my laptop today). I love the way you refuse to capitalise “progressive christians” by the way – I can tell that was on purpose. 🙂

    Yes, what Catt says about the persecution of Christians is absolutely disgusting. 🙁 He seems to be just too arrogant to care about Christians losing their jobs after being hauled before diversity boards. I have known people myself who have suffered in this way. This is just one example of him giving lip service to caring for the working class even his heart is really made of stone.

    “My alternative hypothesis is that it is attractive to the rebellious hippy generation of the 1960s and 1970s who also seem to be in a timewarp with regard to outdated radical structuralist readings of the Bible and “death of the author” theories that are only a footnote in academia now. ”

    Sadly, I don’t think this is true. 🙁 The reason is that Progressive “Christianity” isn’t just confined to a few inner city parishes. You do have the cathedral and inner-city parishes like the Inkpins at Milton and (formerly) Tiffany Sparks at Ashgrove but there are Progressive “Christian” parishes in rural areas and other places you wouldn’t expect to find them.

    On that Uniting Church PC forum you linked, these are listed as PC parishes:

    Dayboro Uniting Church
    Glasshouse Country Uniting Church
    Caloundra Uniting Church

    Dayboro is a small country town west of Brisbane. Likewise, Glasshouse is a small rural town on the Sumshine Coast. Caloundra is a small city on the Sunshine Coast (it is where my daughter lives).

    These are very politically-conservative towns with ageing populations.

    The same is true of the Anglican Church. A priestess named Jeanette Jamieson-Foarde went to the Anglican Parish of Kilcoy. She and a parish councillor named Margaret Pearson formed a clique and transformed the Anglican Parish of Kilcoy into a heterodox Progressive “Christianity” centre. Some mainstream/evangelical Anglicans left the parish because of her. (Margaret Pearson had left the Lutheran Church under a cloud and converted to liberal Anglo-Catholicism.)

    Next, Jeanette Jamieson-Foarde moved to the Parish of Maleny and promoted Progressive “Christianity” there too.

    Another example is the Parish of Buderim, near where I live. It is a mid-sized Sunshine Coast town. It was Progressive “Christian” under the Rev. (now Bishop) Jeremy Greaves, and this has continued under the openly-lesbian priestess Moira Evers.

    As much as I hate to say this, priestesses like Tiffany Sparks, Penny Inkpin, Jeanette Jamieson-Foarde and Moira Evers are all good reasons why the admission of women to the Anglican priesthood has been a disaster.

    Why, then, are these conservative rural parishes changing to Progressive “Christianity”? I think there aee a few factors at play here:

    1. Low levels of Bible literacy. A lot of these Anglicans are simply too lazy to read the Bible for some reason. Maybe it is because they are Anglo-Catholics, so less emphasis is placed on the word of God. Even Aspinall has admitted this is a huge problem in the Diocese.

    2. Related to this, low levels of theological understanding and engagement Some life-long Anglicans have never even heard of terms lile “predestination” and aren’t particularly interested when they do learn. Maybe it is again because they are Anglo-Catholics but without a solid doctrinal foundation, they are easily swayed by the heterodox teachings that are being introduced by these false preachers. This relates to the general anti-intellectuallism of the Anglo-Catholics.

    3. Liberalism in general and reception of homosexuality. It is very well-known that, from its earliest days, Anglo-Catholiism has been very attractivevto homosexuals. This is equally true of Brisbane. Even in the Anglican Parish of Kilcoy had a homosexual trainee priest, John Stevenson, before Jeanette Jamieson-Foarde came along and the “conservative” country folk loved him. (Of course, the handful of evangelical/low church Anglicans at the Parish of Kilcoy were not impressed by that, either). I guess the general effeminacy found amongst the Anglo-Catholic males – even the non-gay, non-transgender ones – like Catt contributes to the culture as does the focus on ritual, dressing up in robes and the theatrics of the mass. They are a poor substitute for good sound doctribe and Bible teaching though. What the gay-friendly culture does though is pave the way for the Catts, Inkpins, Sparks, Evers and Jamieson-Foardes of this world to promote their gender views.

    4. Because the Diocese is very “Catholic” in the sense of beibg centralised, liberal- authorìtarian and hierarchial, there is a sense of “the priest knows best” so if Jamieson-Foarde, Bishop Greaves, Dean Catt and Archbishop Aspinall say women priests, gender theory and various heterodox ideas about core doctrine are fine, these country folk will go along with it, irrespective of what the Bible says. It is very sad, actually.

    Unfortunately for Catt and co, being rural conservatives, none of these country folk are likely to ever end up voting for progressive political parties in the way he hopes but they are obviously highly-pliable when it comes to theological progressivism and the kind of heterodox ideas promoted by Jamieson-Foarde and her ilk.

    1. On that note, I am going to take a break again for a little while. Talking about what is happening in Anglican Church Southern Queensland is just too distressing. Seeing these crooks in positions of power leading their flocks astray with their false teachings upsets me too much. The whole Diocese is rotten from the top down to these small rural parishes and is controlled by these arrogant bishops and deans and their coterie of Westar-affiliated fringe theologians who are intent on trampling upon Jesus’ teachings, the Bible, Christian morality and our doctrines. There is no accountability for these crooks and vipers within the church hierarchy. When I think of Catt smug in his cathedral or hypocrites like Jamieson-Foarde at Maleny, it is too much for me. 🙁 At least Christ will hold them to account one day.

      God bless.

      1. Thank you for speaking up. I understand why you feel so overwhelmed. I have heard complaints about Jeanette Jamieson from multiple different sources. I won’t go into details of the allegations here but she doesn’t sound like a very honest person – she twists the truth to suit her own agenda and her theology is very liberal. There are allegations of her bullying, forming cliques and ostracizing individuals she didn’t like, being intolerany of Calvinists, being rude to parishioners and backstabbing people too – typical control freak behaviour. Where have the morals gone in the clergy of our age? As for what is happening at the Cathedral, it is just disgraceful . They are making a mockery of God in His own house.

        Then there is the paedophilia cover-up and the constant promotion of homosexuality at the Cathedral and the very strange going-ons amongst the ‘unusual’ crowd at Holy Trinity Fortitude Valley. Tyere’s a lot of strange homosexual activity there but zero repentance for their sins. In fact they relish in it. I find it a sad place.

        “An explanation of this contrast may be that thinking, older people… are finding that the suppositions behind orthodoxy do not fit their experience and realities of the current intellectual age.”

        Yet many, many more older people join churches where orthodox Christians beliefs are preached.

        I think Jean’s explanations are probably right. People in Brisbane have a low view of the Bible and little engagement with it and just blindly folow what their priests say, no matter how unorthodox. That is how they get away with it. Parishioners need to start taking more personal responsibility, be a lot more discerning about what is being preached to them, read their Bibles and be prepared to tell the hierarchy that their actions and herestical views are unacceptable. Eventually Aspinall and pals might get the messsage. Sadly I can’t see any of that happening in the current apathetic, disengaged, highly liberal Anglo-Catholic culture amongst parishioners in the Diocese.

        Thankfully God called myown family out of theDoocese to another denomination. In his loving care, he drew us away to protect us from these ravenous wolves and false shepherds in the clergy who are preying on the Anglican Church and destroying it from within with their false teachings, their hypocrisy, their blatantly sinful lifestyles and their corruption.

        Please pray for Anglican Church Southern Queensland so that souls are not lost to the teachings of its false shepherds. God bless. Amen.

        Pray also that people like Peter Catt, Ann Sokari, Sue Wilton, the Inkpins, Jeanette Jamieson, Moira Evers, Greaves, Sparks, Aspinall, Jenks, ‘Mother’ Leaves and all of their cohort will turn to Christ, seek repentance and be saved. We must work to save these false shepherds from their own sins and misleading others and pray that they will be converted to Christianity and be saved.

        Thanks and God bless.

      2. I’ve heard much the same from credible sources regarding Rev J J-F. She is now Dean of the Sunshine Coast, too, so she is climbing up the career ladder. I don’t think she has any links to Westar thankfully, though.

        Yes, we must pray for these sinful minister. They will be judged more harshly than us. We must also pray that no parishioners are lost because of their false teachings. God bless you and keep you.

      3. Folks, your intel is a little out of date. Jeanette Jamieson-Foard retired from Maleny about three months ago thankfully. I know all about the problems she caused at the Anglican Parish of Kilcoy and then at Maleny and the other allegations against her which I had better not repeat here. The last thing I heard she was working as a locum at the Parish of Caloundra. Heaven help Caloundra.

        Jamieson-Foard’s successor at Maleny as locum is Ann Shepperson, another woman priest. Shepperson is an Anglo-Catholic but she has some charismatic leanings and extensive experience in hospital chaplaincy. She used to be the Pastoral Care Coordinator for the northside.

      4. To clarify what ‘Pew Warmer’ said, Ingrid Busk is the main locum at Caloundra at the moment. I think Jeanette Jamieson-Foard is one of the assistants. I don’t know much about Caloundra but they have Alpha Courses, etc., so they might be a bit more evangelical than a liberal / progressive Anglo-Catholic like Priestess Jamieson-Foard is used to.

        Hopefully she doesn’t start throwing her weight around liberalising things and bullying people like she did at the Anglican Parish of Kilcoy. Priestess Busk is fairly old so I hope she can restrain Jamieson-Foard.

      5. Thanks for stating this. I know what happened at the Anglican Parish of Kilcoy. The behaviour of Jeanette Jamieson-Foard, Margaret Pearson and the Parish Council they led was disgraceful. There was a breakdown of ethics and a culture of bullying and lies led by the two aforementioned women.

        The theological and doctrinal o tegrity of the parish suffered too as Jamieson-Foard inflicted her liberal catholic views on us by her micro-management. Sadly, it was already a very Anglo-Catholic parish and all too many parishioners were prepared to go along with her heterodoxy.

    2. One would be appalled, hypothetically of course, if Jeanette Jamieson used the old Jesuit tactic of ‘mental reservation’ to not disclose the whole truth about her treatment of congregants. That and ‘bearing false witness’ and bullying congregants would paint a dire picture. Of course if the hierarchy knew about such conduct on the priestess’ behalf but still promoted her to the position of ‘Dean of the Sunshine Coast’ that would paint them all in a very bad light-hypothetically, of course.

    3. Yes I know Jeanette Jamieson-Foarde. I’ve witnessed her bully and be rude to her own parishioners and be liberal with the truth. She’s an appalling woman. She’s far from Christ at this stage. Pray for her.

      1. Yes, I’d like to reiterate this. Please pray that she will turn to Christ, repent and be saved.

  23. Sorry to feel so overwhelmed. There are just too many terrible things happening. Under Aspinall, the Diocese of Brisbane has become rotten to its core.

    God bless,

    Jean

  24. Sorry to hear that, Jean. Remember “the night is always darkest just before the dawn.” The Lord has never let any heresy survive long term. He will deal with it in His time. The situation in Anglican Church Southern Queensland may seem hopeless now but He will take action in the way of His choosing and I am sute His results will surprise us as these false teachings, built on a foundation of sand, crumble in the dust and are forgotten.

    That said, I understand your frustration and hurt at the way hypocritics like Peter Catt and Jeanette Jamieson (who has a terrible reputation in my circles – yes, she is a very good example of why God teaches us through Paul’s epistles that women aee NOT to be priests) climb the career ladder and gain power, while blatantly denying God’s lifegiving Word, rejecting doctrine, spinning webs of deceit and bullying evangelicals and low church Calvinists out of the Anglican Church. There will be justice in the end. It always catches up with people like them. Let us just pray they do not destroy many souls in the process through their false teachings.

    Stay strong and have a good period of rest and recuperation. Hand it all over to God and let Him take action in His own time.

    God bkess,

    Anon

  25. This sermon by Catt is one you haven’t mentioned yet. It is interesting and deeply worrying:

    https://drive.google.com/file/d/1OlB6k4UoylCLYwNPvaWqHSZkPSN_6cBN/view

    “On the first three Sundays of Easter the gospel stories all deal with the
    events of the first Easter. On Easter day we read the account from Mark
    of the empty tomb
    . The following Sunday we read the story of Jesus and
    Thomas from John
    . On the third Sunday it was the aftermath of the
    Emmaus Road encounter found in Luke
    . These all demonstrate the ways
    in which the evangelists tried to convey to their readers the significance
    of that first Easter. Each seeks to put the reader in touch with the
    ungraspable reality that is the resurrection, the encountering of Jesus as
    alive after death. To do this they use story and metaphor.

    Okay, so he again denies the bodily resurrection as an historical reality, ascribing it to the realm of story and metaphor instead.

    “The gospels, in their
    entirety, are reflections on and explorations of what it is to live as Easter
    people.”

    They are this but they are also much, much more. They are a witness to the reality of Christ’s bofily resurrection, an historical reality situated in space-time.

    “And as Jesus we challenge the
    religious people and the secular authorities.”

    Fine words, yet when people prorest at the cathedral in Brisbane, Catt has called the police on them. Peter Catt is a corrupt hypocrite. It is fine for him to protest but not for other people to protest against him and his church hirrarchy. His own words condemn him.

    “As Jesus we celebrate the gift of the earth, seek to safeguard its integrity, and challenge those who through greed, ignorance or
    indifference contribute to its destruction. ”

    That may or may not be a noble sentiment but it really isn’t part of Christ’s mandate for us. Catt is conflating his secular political views with the Gospel again to promote a specific partisan agenda.

    “… not being political is to be political.”

    An old communist trick being recycled by the Progressive Christianity kovement – politicise everything even that which us pronouncedly apolitical or, in the case of the Gospel, above politics. Make everything a divisive issue. Make claims everything is about power relations. Sickening. 🙁

    Now this is today’s sermon. He explores Girard’s ideas about Satan some more:

    https://drive.google.com/file/d/19aFL94pUujPlpH24_rkpKiGQFO-ezsbl/view

    To be fair, this time he doesn’t say Satan is the mob. He uses the metaphor that Satan is a virus that can activate a mob.

    “Girard’s suggestion that the answer to the question is ‘no’ is important
    because it invites us to move away from a dualistic understanding of
    Satan; an understanding that posits Satan as being a figure like the dark
    Lord, Sauron in The Lord of the Rings; an autonomous evil power that
    stands in opposition to God. Such a view puts us on the path that leads
    towards Satan being the evil version of God.”

    Okay, fair enough. Catt is avoiding Manichean thought here.

    “We then end up with the
    good God against the bad god in some sort of cosmic battle. Throughout
    history various parts of the tradition have dabbled with that idea, but we
    do need to remind ourselves one of the foundations of the faith is that
    ‘We believe in One God…’”

    However, he now conflates two ideas. Yes, they are in a cosmic battle, which he denies; no, they are not equals, as he rightly asserts. He has had his heel bruised but He has crushed the serpent’s head.

    Catt, of course, takes a low view of scripture. To him, it is not all God-breathed nor is it infallible whennit comes to mattrrs relating to salvation. Rather it contains a series of conflicting religious threas in dialogue, and even in conflict,with each other. How foes Catt decide which ones are authentic and real? It seems yo be whichever ones simply appeal the most to Catt.

    ” The one God is a creative principle that seeks
    to overcome chaos. Chaos is not the same as evil; though at times chaos
    can be the product of evil, particularly in human systems and
    relationships.”

    This kind of language as God as a creative principle is troubling. Thrre is no talk of a person God in this description. Also, from whence did chaos arrive? God did organise from the watery chaos and darkness on Day One but He initially created all from nothing. Chaos, as much as order, originates with the God of all.

    “Girard sees Satan as
    that which takes over a mob when it gets out of control: that which
    bubbles up and causes the peaceful protest to suddenly turn into a
    looting mob that attacks the police, the mob that lynches people, the
    mob that roamed around the Capitol Building in Washington looking for
    politicians to kill, the crowd that called for Jesus to be crucified.”

    Often mobs turn to violence because of police or security agency “plants”. Catt sounds oddly maive omitting to mention these. Nevertheless, let’s accept that Satan than spurs the mob on to follow the plants initiating the violence. It seems a fair enough presumption.

    Catt cites the Capitol riots as an example of violence but omits mentioning BLM or Antifa, again reflecting his bias. He even slyly equates the Capitol rioters with the mob who crucified Christ!

    Whatever the morality or otherwise of tgose events, Trump supporters see themselves as white, conservative Christians and one suspects this is the real reason Catt singled them out as being motivated by Satan.

    “The next thing to say is that in holding that Satan would not exist
    without people, Girard is not saying that Satan and humanity are
    equivalents. He invites us to see Satan as something that is dependent
    on humanity, but which is also separate. ”

    Yet orthodoxy claims Satan led a rebellion in heaven. Presumably this occurred before the existence of humans and did not involve humans acting as a “host” for this “virus”.

    “Satan the
    force that rules the mob and which at the same time is created by the
    mob. The mob and Satan are co-dependent.”

    Calling Satan a “force”, like calling God a creative principle is troubling, since it downplays his nature as a “being” or diabolical “intelligence” or “individual”. Saying the mob “creates” Satan is pronlematic too, except in tge more general sense of Satan being “opponent”.

    “Mob behaviour can be seen at work in everything from out-of-control
    street protests, popular movements stirred up by shock-jocks, the
    paparazzi-fuelled popular interest is celebrities, social media echo
    chambers, and populist movements that lead nations to choose outcomes
    that are to their own detriment or which seek to destroy whole peoples or
    the planet.”

    More Green politics and anti-Trumpisn at the end. All of this seems too narrow, anyway; when Satan tempts Eve and later Jesus, both are explicitly described as alone. There is no “mob” element in either temptation. Surely Catt has been tempted whilst alone without influence from any popular movement or medua inlut or is he further denying his own sinful nature and the temptations that speak to him from an external source?

    Interesting Catt mentions street protests too since he has been involved in protests himself and has publicly stated he would risk arrest yet has called the police to arrest protesters at his cathedral. He does have a very hypocritical relationship with the notion of protest in general. When it suits him, it is okay; when it opposes him or an agenda he supports it is the work of Satan in his twisted view, evidently.

    At the end of the day, we don’t end up much clearer on whether Catt believes in Gid and Satan as personal, intelligent beings or as vague cosmic forces. He seems to use language to deliberate obfuscate his thoughts in his sermons and hide how heretical his ideas really are from casual listeners unaware of his role as a leading figure in the heretical, anti-Christian Progressive “Christianity” movement.

    May God protect us from this hypocritical false preacher and his APCVA colleagues. May he come to Christ one day and seek sincere conversion. Please pray for him.

    God bless.

  26. Take it easy, Jean. Yes, remember everything is in God’s hands.

    I’ve been reading around some more and it seems that denying the historicity of the resurrection of Jesus Christ is common in Brisbane Anglican and progressive christian circles. No surprises it can be traced back to Borg, Crossan and the Westar Institute crowd again.

    I can’t imagine the early Christians willingly given up their lives for a metaphor.

    I am just glad I don’t live in Brisbane.

  27. ^ Typo: I can’t imagine the early Christians willingly giving up their lives for a metaphor.

    I can imagine them dying for a resurrection they are certain is an historical reality though.

  28. Thanks for your kind words everyone. Yes, a brek is what I need and no thinking about chuch politics and apostate mi isters for a long time.

    One thing before I go. I just found this old ABC Q and A transcript featuring Tiffany Sparks. In it, she says this:

    “TIFFANY SPARKS: I think in regards to just war, for me personally there’s – I mean I’m fairly – I’m a pacifist, that is my stance. I’m a really proud daughter of a returned serviceman that did three tours of Vietnam and I think my father’s a pretty amazing person. So I have a great respect for our military and for people who do have the courage to be able to do those sort of things, that I certainly couldn’t do.”

    SOURCE: https://www.abc.net.au/qanda/church-and-state/10653048

    Like Catt, she tries to have it both ways, claiming to be anti-war but also saying she is (very) pro-military. Like Catt, when she was living in Queensland, we never heard from her or saw her at any anti-war events nor did she approach myself or any of my Anglican Pacifist colleagues. She may describe herself as a Christian pacifist but we never saw her and never received any support from her. The hierarchy showed complete disinterest in us.

  29. Forsomeone claiming to be a pacifist, it is interesting to see Catt was actually an RSL chaplain:

    https://anglicanfocus.org.au/2019/11/04/remembrance-day/

    “Because he was dead, she spent her formative years in a hard, brutal Protestant Boarding School. The school experience left her with scars she carried for the rest of her life.”

    That might go some way to explaining his rejection of mainstream Christianity – or it could just be another one of his snarky, disingenuous attacks on Protestantism. I hope he would not lie about something like that, though. 🙁

    One other thing is clear from his interviews is that he became a priest because he had some kind of vague spiritual awakening from studyk g evolutionary biology and from seeing sublime scenes of nature. However, he did not have a specific calling from God to become a priest nor, it seems, does He have a personal relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ. 🙁 Please pray for him.

    1. Yes, glad to hear you are okay. Take some respite, Jean.

      I think there are lots of possible reasons why Catt and Tiffany Sparks might not have engaged with Anglican peacemakers. These are some possibilities:

      1. They are all talk and no action;
      2. They are lukewarm in their commitment – ie, they are still very pro-military as we have seen. They might consider real Christian pacifist groups too ideologically pure and anti-military for them.
      3. You are too Biblically-orthodox.
      4. It might not be politically expedient for them to be involved in peace eork.
      5. They might want to build their own Progressive Anglican peace network, fir reasons either related to (3) above or for plain old political/empire-building purposes. Remember, these are people who have already climbed up the church hierarchy, so they are accustomed yo playing political power games and kmow all the tricks. Even Aspinall has said that Anglican politucs makes federal parliament look like kindergarten. Source: https://www.smh.com.au/national/anglican-church-register-of-sex-abuse-complaints-out-of-date-royal-commission-hears-20131127-2yadt.html

      The quote is interesting. I hadn’t come across it before:

      “Because he was dead, she spent her formative years in a hard, brutal Protestant Boarding School. The school experience left her with scars she carried for the rest of her life.”

      This personal trauma his family exprrienced may possibly partially explain Catt’s deep disdain for Protestantism and orthodox Christian belief in general. However, it raises more questions than it answers:

      Having known a family member who has suffered, why then is Catt so hardhearted towards abuse survivors? Having witnessed his reactions, that is definitely the impression I received. Why does he oppose activists protesting the abuse?

      I feel Jesus’ words to the pharisees and scribes in Ljke 11 are still relevant to Aspinall, Catt, Greaves, Jonathan Holland, Dean Jeanette Jamieson-Foarde and all of their friends today.

      43 “Woe to you Pharisees, because you love the most important seats in the synagogues and respectful greetings in the marketplaces.”

      Yes, all the Anglo-Catholic pomp, bowing to the Archbishop at Synod, use of titles, etc. What about all the warnings in the Psalms about pomp, too?

      44 “Woe to you, because you are like unmarked graves, which people walk over without knowing it.”
      45 One of the experts in the law answered him, “Teacher, when you say these things, you insult us also.”
      46 Jesus replied, “And you experts in the law, woe to you, because you load people down with burdens they can hardly carry, and you yourselves will not lift one finger to help them.”

      Yes, lots of talk about helping the poor and working classes but it is just that – talk. They attack them when it suits them, including mistreatment of abuse survivors.

      47 “Woe to you, because you build tombs for the prophets, and it was your ancestors who killed them.
      48 So you testify that you approve of what your ancestors did; they killed the prophets, and you build their tombs.
      49 Because of this, God in his wisdom said, ‘I will send them prophets and apostles, some of whom they will kill and others they will persecute.’
      50 Therefore this generation will be held responsible for the blood of all the prophets that has been shed since the beginning of the world,
      51 from the blood of Abel to the blood of Zechariah, who was killed between the altar and the sanctuary. Yes, I tell you, this generation will be held responsible for it all.
      52 “Woe to you experts in the law, because you have taken away the key to knowledge. You yourselves have not entered, and you have hindered those who were entering.”

      Yes, the “experts in the law” have created and endorse the man-made teachings of Progressive Christianity and disregard for Biblical doctrines. They do not confess Jesus as Lord. They do not proclaim the historicity of the Resurrection. They are therefore not saved and they have hindered others from being saved by not teaching them to repent and trust in Christ as their Lord and Saviour. The similarities between what Jesus was saying then and what is happening in Brisbane now are chilling. Well, as they say history always repeats itself.

      Let us pray for a real revival in Brisbane. This city needs it.

      1. ‘Even Aspinall has said that Anglican politucs makes federal parliament look like kindergarten. ‘

        One could say that is why there are so few Christians in the hierarchy. They are politicians first and foremost, keen to climb the career ladder and willing to stab each other in the back without hesitation.

        As Pastor Roberson notes in his latest blog entry, ‘the wine drinking ‘progressive’ clergy are not the champions of the poor. They are the virtue signallers par excellence. They fiddle while Rome burns.’

        In my estimation, this is absolutely correct and one of the most serious indictments one can make about them.

      2. Bravo, Pastor. Thank you for speaking the truth for us people of Brisbane.

  30. Good + honest discussion. It all rings true from my perspective as someone whose spent many years worshipping in the diocese. And you have barely even touched on the wickedness + sexual depravity of so many of our priests who are living sodomistic lifestyles quite openly with no fear of reprisals.

    1. ‘And you have barely even touched on the wickedness + sexual depravity of so many of our priests who are living sodomistic lifestyles quite openly with no fear of reprisals.’

      The Oratory crowd at Holy Trinity would be a good place to start looking. It is interesting to observe what clergy supports the OGS and why. I attended one of their functions once, in innocent naivety, that descended into butt-groping and discussion of toga-fetishes amongst their priests. There is a reason why the Cathedral has been nicknamed ‘Sodom’ and Holy Trinity ‘Gomorrah’ among some laity in the know.

      Of course, the Oratory is just the tip of the iceberg.

      One could argue that doctrinal weakness, lack of fidelity to the Scriptures and creeds, liberalism and lax moral standards are all inter-related and one feeds of the other. A high view of the Bible and a return to doctrinal Orthodoxy would destroy liberalism and lead to sexual perversion and sodomy being driven out of the diocese or, at worst, amongst the Anglo-Catholics, being put firmly back in the closet.

      It would also lead to the end of these lax and corrupt progressive priests.

      Nothing else will save the Diocese of Brisbane.

      God be with you.

  31. Some Progressive “Christians” are now pro-abortion, overturning one of the oldest and most well-documented stances of the church from its earliest times:

    https://amp.theatlantic.com/amp/article/590293/

    https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-03-31/im-a-christian-and-i-perform-abortions-heres-how-i-reconcile/10940114

    https://amp.smh.com.au/politics/nsw/churches-divided-over-bill-to-decriminalise-abortion-20190803-p52djw.html

    https://ucforum.unitingchurch.org.au/?p=1825

    It does not appear to be an APCVA official policy just yet, thankfully.

  32. From a paper on euthanasia formulated by APCVA’s Victorian branch:

    “We do not believe in a God who causes intolerable suffering. Rather we believe that it is the
    responsibility of Christians to reduce suffering and its causes wherever possible. We also believe that
    people have a responsibility for their own life and for the choices that they make. From a Christian
    perspective, this is a God given responsibility that no one should take from them. Consequently, it is
    not inconsistent with Christian values for a person facing intolerable suffering towards the end of
    their life to rationally choose to end this suffering by taking their own life. ”

    https://www.progressivechristians.org.au/wp-content/uploads/Dying-with-Dignity-Briefing-Paper.pdf

    They are complete and utter cranks. 🙁

    1. Yes, between this bizarre theology and seeing how stalwart evangelical congregation members were bullied out of the Anglican Parish of Kilcoy by Jeanette Jamieson-Foard and her Anglo-Catholic parish council cronies like Margaret Pearson, I am just about through with Anglican Church Southern Queensland and its culture of homosexuality, liberalism and its anti-Biblical, anti-intellectual, ‘Progressive’ stance. There is a clandestine culture of fear, legal threats and intimidation here. From the cathedral to ryral parishes like Kilcoy, parishioners have turned their backs on Jesus’ teachings and have failed to adopt a Christ – like attitude and humility. There are all kinds of dirty tricks, factionalism and politics at play. The lack of morality and ethics has ruined our parish and our wider Diocese.

  33. ‘the wine drinking ‘progressive’ clergy are not the champions of the poor. They are the virtue signallers par excellence. They fiddle while Rome burns.’

    Thank you for speaking out pastor. This is very true of our Diocesan hierarchy here in Brisbane. They make a pretence of caring about the poor but they don’t really. They only care power and making a show of things. I’ve personally seen poor victims of child sexual abuse be bullied by certain members of the hierarchy. I’ve seen other poor parishioners receive legal threats. It is quite an authoritarian and centralised diocese. There is too much power centralised in the bishops and around the cathedral. The extremely liberal views of our clergy don’t represent all of us out here in suburban Brisbane. I know people who have left because of the liberalism and promotion of John Shelby Spong and his like. People who move from interstate are often shocked at how Anglo-Catholic and liberal Qld Anglicanism is and move to other denominations quite quickly. The machine is full of poison – there are a lot of unethical clergy, including open homosexuals and heretics and they are often in positions of real power. The worse they are, the higher up the hirarchy the generally rise. The sad thing is when laity, often eldrly, have no understanding of what is going on, or worse still when they just don’t care or they endirse it. For a conservative city, we are tied with Perth for having the most liberal Anglican diocese in Australia and often thecountry parishes as mentioned above are the among the eorst of all. The whole vorrupt culture needs to change and people need to start getting serious about Christian ethics, reading the Bible and following Jesus and get serious about doctrine too and leave the rot being taugt now behind. God doesn’t want lukeearm Christians or hypocrites and Brisbane is chockers full of them, both clergy and laity. Thanks again and God bless.

  34. This is a very good discussion. The Anglican Diocese of Brisbane’s reputation for terrible, liberal, unorthodox theology, Anglo-Catholic effeminacy, and arrogance and bullying (especially in relation to its treatment of abuse survivors) has spread far and wide interstate.

  35. No doubt the Brisbane Diocese is in a mess but I can’t see things changing while Aspinall is there. He is the one endorsing the slimy politicians and eccentrics like Peter Catt, Jeremy Greaves and Jonathan Holland. I refuse to set foot in the cathedral now because of the perversities celebrated there and the there souls being led by the nose to damnation by Peter Catt and his colleagues.

    The damage done in Aspinall’s tenure has been enormous. There is a lot more I could say about Aspinall but I’ll bite my tongue.

  36. ‘The wine drinking ‘progressive’ clergy are not the champions of the poor. They are the virtue signallers par excellence. They fiddle while Rome burns.’

    Thank you for speaking truth to power, sir. This is especially true of Peter Catt, Jeremy Greaves and Phillip Aspinall. They are not above bullying poor people if they havd the ‘wrong’ (i. e. evangelical) kind of theology. They treasure their cathedral more than abuse victims and are not above suing the poor. They care about material things like that building more than they do people. For all of their talk about caring for the poor and marginalised and people with mental health issues, they are not above bullying and threatening these people, especially if they have orthodox Christian beliefs or have come to Brisbane from other, more evangelical dioceses. I have witnessed them do it. They are hypocrites par excellence.

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