Kevin Rudd
The Book of Acts

New Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard

Gillard Julia Gillard became the 27th Prime Minister of Australia on June 24th, 2010. This occurred after the resignation of Kevin Rudd. Julia had served as the Deputy Prime Minister in the Rudd Government. She is the first woman Prime Minister in Australia and the first to have never married. She is also a red head - bring on national ranga day! :)

Discussion has taken place concerning the ousting of Prime Minister Rudd, but let's not forget that Rudd did a similar thing to Kim Beazley and similar situations have occurred in other parties. Political leadership is not for the faint of heart.

Although brought up as a Baptist, Gillard has recently declared that she is not religious and has no belief in God. Some people believe that this will alienate her from the Christian vote, though not everyone feels this way. At least she has been honest about this matter, without trying to present something she is not, just to get more votes.

Julia has already demonstrated decisive leadership during her short time in office, immediately dealing with the mining tax issue and promising to move forward on the asylum seeker and border protection controversy as soon as possible. She has also confirmed her commitment to protecting the definition of marriage as between a man and a woman, a commitment welcome by the Australian Christian Lobby who has done much work on this matter.

Only time will tell what kind of a Prime Minister Julia will become, especially in relation to her and her parties policies and values, and how they will shape her leadership. Whatever your political persuasion may be, let’s be sure to uphold Julia and our government up in prayer at this important time in our journey as a nation (1 Timothy 2:1-4).

Comments

So what do you think should be the issues in Christians' minds in the next election, and who do you think is the preferred leader of our nation - Gillard or Abbott?

Well said. I have no quarrel with Julia's statement of principled unbelief. She seemed quite cordial and respectful of those whose religious beliefs differed from her own, a far cry from the sorts of uninformed intolerance that have become 'trendy' of late.

I would love hear Rudd and Gillard debate each other about the existence of God and the merits of religion at an open mic session, but I'm guessing they're not really on speaking terms right now. ;-)

Prime Minister Gillard(Education minister previously)Labour have not renewed funding for the "Christian chaplains in schools", a program put in place by the Howard government.

Haven’t ‘stopped by’ for a while here so here’s a few thoughts. John Edwards asked: So what do you think should be the issues in Christians' minds in the next election, and who do you think is the preferred leader of our nation - Gillard or Abbott?

Since the Bible doesn’t tell us who to vote for, it is within the boundaries of our Christian liberty and conscience to vote for whomever we want. A ‘responsible’ casting vote ought to be one that votes ‘in good faith’ for the candidate’s ability and potential and how they will handle major policy issues. That will require some basic enquiry on our behalf so we can form a view as to where the candidate stands on certain issues and how they intend to deal with them during their term.

The imperative of 1 Timothy 2:1-4 referred to above, is to pray, intercede and give thanks for heads of government so that “we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness”. For us to enjoy such a lifestyle politicians need God’s abundant wisdom on how to make difficult decisions. Some issues don’t have easy answers.

Interceding for them apparently “pleases God our Savior” (v3), so it’s not just a wish list item on God’s agenda. Verse 3 also assumes that they may not be Christians. Why else would it say that God “wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth”? This statement is in the context of praying for heads of state.

In this sense I would agree with Shane Clifton that our PM doesn’t necessarily need to be from the Christian fraternity. In the vocational world the best person for a job (any job) is not always a Christian. [I confess that a while ago I made a decision not to use ‘Christian’ tradies anymore because of some painful experiences I had with them.] It’s fine to have a PM who can quote Leviticus and Romans, but they need to be pretty switched-on on economics, foreign policy, and use of public wealth. If the PM is good at his/her job AND happens to be a Christian, it’s an added bonus, but not a prerequisite. It means little to me seeing the PM on the news coming out of a church service if he’s done a hatchet job of the economy.

The Christianisation of politics is primarily a byproduct of contemporary American Evangelicalicalism. Jesus wasn’t the least fussed about how the Romans ran the show in his time and Paul didn’t display any political persuasion in his writings. He only exhorted Christians to be obedient to authorities and pray for those in charge. Furthermore, God clearly cherry-picked heathen kings to fulfill his purposes. Apart from Pharaoh and Xerxes there was also Cyrus and the megalomaniac Nebuchadnezzar. As they were instrumental in the fulfilment of the purposes of God, the Bible refers to them as God’s ‘shepherd’, ‘anointed’ and ‘servant’. (Isaiah 44:28, 45:1, Jeremiah 27:6)

Obviously a ‘biblical worldview’ will influence the values of a politician (i.e. Abraham Lincoln), but not all political decisions have to do with moral issues.

I am not convinced of Rudd’s Christian faith. As an outside observer of his public life he did not come across as overtly Christian. He seemed to have attained perhaps an ‘intellectual assent’ to biblical Christianity (i.e. his fascination with Bonhoeffer), but I am not persuaded it was followed by a conviction of the heart (personal opinion, not revelation).

Flip the coin on the other side and you get Fred Nile, as overtly Christian as a politician can be. Yet I would hate LOATH to have him as my Prime Minister. I think he is out of touch with the heart of the gospel message and he is confusing it with moralism. His latest attempt to legislate the banning of the burka and trying to ‘sell’ his message in the streets of Lakemba is deplorable (that is analogous to Sydney Rd for you parochial Melbournians). If we could legislate morality who needs the cross and the gospel? Just pass a few Bills and forget grace and the Holy Spirit’s sanctifying power! Who needs it? As well-intentioned as he may be, I think he is misguided and naïve and I don’t want him representing me as a Christian in the political landscape.

Finally, a few thoughts on the Rudd vs Gillard debate. Completely ‘different animal’ figuratively speaking. Rudd was a little smarmy and couldn’t answer a question straight without superfluous and often confusing rhetoric. Gillard on the other hand is far more controlled in her answers and delivers them with deadpan precision and emotionally void enunciation. I suspect she will have better control of the media and will almost be ‘blunder-proof’. Their different personalities and gender however say nothing about their ability to run the country.

Whoever makes it on the next election needs our prayers so God can guide them to preserve the great things about our country and see us through the tough times. Their faith in Christ is a personal matter in the end.

Lastly….on a lighter note, I would imagine that the person of Germanic extraction who is connected to this blog, would be elated about the 4-0 thrashing of the Argentinians:)

I think St Paul would be turning in his grave right now.

An atheist and a woman in headship over what is fundamentally a Christian nation ...

I think the notion of "Christian nation" is a political intrepretation. According to research, the fastest christian growth(in number) is in developing countries, where their leaders are often non-christian. To have non-christian leader is not neccessary a bad thing. Christian and non-christian are still within the ambit of God common grace. The injunction is to pray for our leader, Christian or not. God can used a non-Christian for His purpose. That is why he is a great God.

John of Brisvegas - I am still grinning over that spectacular win and have driven everyone insane with German patriotism! Nice to read your thoughts on this blog again :)
nic

Prime Minister Gillard, doesn't care at all about what God thinks, Pro-Abortion, Pro-Homosexuality, wants Christian Chaplains out of schools, refused to take the oath on the bible. Will she pass laws to stop Christian evangelism? (Bill of Rights).
You have a clear choice vote for a Christian or vote for a non-Christian. Sure Fred Nile isn't perfect but at least he's sincere, and passionate about righteousness, and what about the sacrifices hes made for the sake of the gospel.
What about the goal of becoming a more Godly/ righteous nation, (righteousness exalts a nation).
Can we achieve that through Prime Minister Gillard? Or will it be better served through Abbott. Heidi Baker gave a great word recently
concerning Australia. (she is not the only prophetic voice talking about a great harvest of souls imminent) .were going to experience a great harvest of the brokenhearted and that the fish that we are going to catch are going to be strange fish. She says that God says we have to have hearts that are open and ready to serve the broken in our communities and that we have to give them the love and answers that the world denies them.

Will our for filling of the destiny for this nation be hindered or helped by voting Prime Minister Gillard in?

Lionfish- I'm presuming St Paul is in heaven with the Lord- rather than turning in his (presumably unmarked) grave in Rome where he is purported to have been killed.

I'm not sure he would be that fussed about Julia-after all he lived during the Roman Empire- one of the most brutal and morally corrupt regimes you could possibly imagine- if you know anything about the lives of the caesars and those at the roman court you will know what I am talking about- Paul certainly did- in Acts 25 Paul presented his testimony before King Agrippa and his consort Bernice- my NIV bible notes inform me that this was King Agrippa II- "his sister Bernice, wno accompanied him to hear Paul's trial, was also his mistress. She tried marriage a number of times and was mistress to other powerful men, but always returned to her brother. Their incest fueled Roman gossip."

I have no doubt that Paul, who was a well-educated and well-travelled man, was well aware of these things.

So, no I don't think St Paul would be turning in his grave about Julia- he might be interceding for her, that she might "act justly, love mercy and walk humbly..."- he would probably also be interceding for her soul that she might come to personally know God who she heard of during her childhood baptist upbringing. Baptists make great social activists you know.

As I’m preparing to mourn the loss of my State of Origin tonight (yeah the team that doesn’t seem to get a win for the last 5 years), we might as well turn up the heat on this blog.

SAM (Samuel? / Samantha?)

Some questions for you.

Whom would you recommend for the next election?
Why do you think this person would make a better PM other than the fact that he/she may be a ‘Christian’?
How would you explain that some of the wealthiest economies on earth (Japan, China, Scandinavian region, Dubai, Saudi Arabia) are run by UN-Christian and ANTI-Christian governments?
This is a hypothetical (though plausible): if you suffered from a life threatening illness and the only two neurosurgeons available where (a) an average Christian neurosurgeon and (b) a brilliant atheist neurosurgeon. Whom you prefer to cut you up?

For the first three questions, if you could answer objectively (with reference to some verifiable facts) rather than subjectively (what you think or feel), that’d be swell!

Not trying to be smart-alecky, just trying to engage you.

Cheers

Yes Sam... do post.

First of all why does anyone think Australia is a christian nation... is there really such a thing? What would be the definition of such a thing? How would we know (*God has a black and white atlas in heaven and we are coloured white... I saw it in a dream), But seriously how would we define a christian nation:
>50% citizens christians (and how would be measure that)
>50% of the current government professing christians
*Outlawing and re-criminalization of homosexuals, abortion, prostitution, gambling, drinking
*Reintroducing the levitical law, death penaltly ( a life for a life) etc
*No violence, nudity - blasemphy in the media.

i.e. If we were serious about what a christian nation would look like, most of the people, most of the laws, most of the arts, most of the science, most of the media, most of culture, most of entertainment would reflect biblical values...

I mean really... people are christians (or they are not)... does apply in a collective sense. The church is a collective of believers. The nation is a collective of all people.

Does God really care that much about politics. I mean He has been around for like... forever. It might be a bit like us worrying over having a bad day. Aren't some christians creating God in their own image a bit... I am really politically minded and so therefore God must be also. As John BV noted Jesus was not that concerned with politics when he was here... unless perhaps he has taken it up as a hobby.... to alleviate boredom, oh or perhaps he has nothing better to do at the moment, sort of had enough of twiddling his thumbs in heaven waiting for his next turn on the earth.

Well there are several options
1. He doesn't give a rats - he has better things on his mind (and perhaps so should we)
2. He prefers candidate A, then C, then D and never E - and if so who would he tell, oh he could start his own blog so we could all know for certain.
3. HE only prefers one candidate- and he tells his servants the prophets (please dial 555 945 6993 and donate to the ministry)
4. He cares but has no direct desire or influence on the outcome of an election (except perhaps in special cases)- he will use any of them to do his will as needed - aaah now this seem more plausible.

Yes John I agree and prefer an upfront skilled PM who is not a christian, rather than a slimy pretend christian PM who does not have the smarts to do the job. No reference to any politician in particular here- just theoretically, as truly what do we know about our PM's apart from what most of us read in the papers or on some unnamed right-wing christian website LOL. Try deciding between the accuracy of these two sources IROFL.

Not to diminish the leadership role of the PM, but it is actually a balance of power between the parliament, the civil service and the law which runs the country- through a very long winded process - not the PM. I mean Kevins fate is clear evidence of that- so why the great concern over which particular unluckly person gets this lofty job...

Does making law save people... or does the gospel? Trying to christianise a nation that is not following God is non-sensical. The laws generally reflect the state-of-the nation. Change the nation, then the laws might adjust to the new reality. Crying foul about changes to the law that might not reflect a personal (or christian) moral position is really conceding defeat- that we have not been salt and light the way we should be. Does our nation hunger and thirst for righteousness... have our good works and love for each other shone before men so that they glorify our heavenly father... or do we spend our time on facebook and blogs. Salt-and-light isn't about waving political placard and creating 'the sky is falling' websites... do so by all means but don' pretend for a minute it is salt-and-light.

I missed a 'this' is in paragraph 4 - it should read..

...does THIS apply in a collective sense?

Mmmm too late must go to bed.

Some good dialogue here! At our church we take a non-aligned politcal stance. We encourage people to get involved in the political world (Steve Fielding attends our church but I am not his policy advisor ... And we have individuals running for other parties). We also encourage all members to be well-informed about political issues so that they can vote intelligently. We have had politicians attend our church so we can pray for them, including Peter Costello and Kevin Rudd in their time. Each candidate needs to be evaluated on their own merit - their party's policies, their character, their values, and their leadership ability. In the end, we have to trust in God's sovereignty - HE puts one up and takes another down ... And let's also remember that some of the greatest moves of God have occurred under persecution (eg Early Church and China) - not that we need to pray for it!

John you wrote: Since the Bible doesn’t tell us who to vote for, it is within the boundaries of our Christian liberty and conscience to vote for whomever we want.
Do you think God has a choice of leader? Is he concerned who should get in?
Well is he? He was concerned who was running Israel, as in the appointment of Saul and then David, so is he interested in/or does he have his choice for Australia. I will include you in this to Pete, The fact that Australia was founded by Christian fathers all of them ministers/laypeople in 1901, dedicating the nation to God, surely that means something to God. Let’s reflect for a moment we have never been invaded, we have never had any civil war for over 100 years since the dedication/proclamation.
It seems to me Pete that you would not hold this history dear or valuable but vote in an atheist if he had the smarts who will most probably ban preaching of the Gospel and remove God from Schools completely, and make it a criminal offence if you say out loud in public that homosexuality is not Gods design. The bible makes it quite clear you are either on the Lords side or the Devils (Mark 9:40) and by default you are on the devils if you don’t believe in God and follow his commands, But I guess you would say that I am being to dogmatic.
1. Whom would you recommend for the next election?
2. Why do you think this person would make a better PM other than the fact that he/she may be a ‘Christian’?

1&2 For purpose of Good role model to young people, Abbott, he’s married and has a family, Gillard is unmarried and with partner.
For purpose of moral code/compass, I would vote Abbott he made it quite clear what he stands for in relation to abortion, the slaughter of the innocent.
He suggests he has civic or public reasons for interventions such as his veto on RU486, or his musings as Health Minister over the number of abortions, or the characterisation of some of his initiatives as designed to prevent terminations of pregnancy. http://larvatusprodeo.net/2010/03/31/tony-abbott-and-political-catholicism.
Julia Gillard has made it clear she will support late term Abortions. God cares very much about the innocent babies that are being murdered., as we all should.
In relation to intellect Tony Abbott has shown some real intelligences. “There’s a real intellectual honesty to him. He writes his own speeches, a throw back to his days as a journalist, he says, but I think more likely, a process through which he develops his thoughts, something that was no doubt fostered during his years at Oxford.” http://www.thepunch.com.au/articles/tony-abbott-the-last-politician-to-speak-his-mind/
Julia Gillard has shown so far an inability to think through the consequences of her policy announcements, most recently the East Timor detention Centre debacle. She spoke to The President of East Timor but not the Prime Minister, the President is like the governor general here a bit of a rubber stamp. This shows also an inability to read due processes at a very basic level. Tony Abbott when health minister made some effective policy directions that would have streamlined the profession and made a much more accountable system. In 2008 Tony Abbott reflects on his time as federal health minister and says that the upcoming health care agreements could achieve most of the benefits of a federal government takeover of public hospitals
At the recent 2020 summit, delegates’ frustration with the dog’s breakfast of divided responsibilities in health was sidetracked into proposals for a national preventive health agency funded by a tax on junk food and a new health equality commission. Keeping people healthy and giving everyone the best possible health outcomes are worthy goals but are unlikely to be achieved by creating new bureaucracies. Avoiding discussion of today’s actual problems by focussing, instead, on vague aspirations for the distant future seems to be the new government’s style. Let’s find something that sounds visionary but that doesn’t threaten current power structures or imply blame for current problems. That way, we can all be seen to work together.
3.How would you explain that some of the wealthiest economies on earth (Japan, China, Scandinavian region, Dubai, Saudi Arabia) are run by UN-Christian and ANTI-Christian governments?
Who Liberated Israel in 1917? Australia….its not the wealth, it’s about strength of character. Its about the sovereign blessing of Almighty God on a nation, it’s about the unseen hand of provision and protection; it’s about a people/nation that have a greater deposit of the character of God in it. I know this is controversial but did you know that it was Australians in Iraq before the war taking out Scud missile batteries before the war that ensured that pretty much no Missiles struck Israel.
Now some of you will scoff and not see that as significant, but the fact remains that God himself is coming to rein from Israel, it is a special place and God continues to use Australia in not only liberation but continued protection, would we reach out to it again in time of need if Gillard get in????
4. This is a hypothetical (though plausible): if you suffered from a life threatening illness and the only two neurosurgeons available where (a) an average Christian neurosurgeon and (b) a brilliant atheist neurosurgeon. Whom you prefer to cut you up?
It is something that would need to be prayed about, without the inclusion of God, well who would you choose? God is sovereign.

Are Lionfish's days numbered?
Lionfish roars on to menu
July 9, 2010
Federal officials, chefs and seafood distributors are urging Americans to eat lionfish until it no longer exists outside its native habitat.
The fish, a Pacific native that has become a relentless predator in US and Caribbean waters, was released from fish tanks in southern Florida sometime between the late 1980s and the early 1990s and is threatening to take over reefs in South America and the Gulf of Mexico.
Between 2004 and 2008, local densities of lionfish increased by roughly 700 per cent in some areas.

Sam (I still don’t know your gender), thank you for engaging. You’ve given me quite a lot to reply to, and I’d love to do that by end of the week I if I can squeeze some time in.

Meanwhile here’s a couple of points to ponder on.

In both modern and ancient history, the church has always thrived under anti-christian regimes. Persecution emboldens the church, not Christianised legislation to make us more comfortable. Think of underground church in communist Russia and China and currently in some Islamic states like Indonesia and other idolatrous nations like Burma, Laos and even India (you should read ‘The Heavenly Man’ regarding Brother Yun’s life by Paul Hathaway).

Nigeria is one of the most corrupt countries on earth (heard of ‘Nigerian scams’?) and yet is experiencing vigorous growth in the church. By your definition those nations must be ‘cursed’ yet Christians in those countries are growing stronger and stronger in their faith.

Here are some facts about the ‘other side’. Below are some excerpts from a Ghanaian Christian columnist Ben Ofosu-Appiah and his observations on the ‘impact’ Christian leadership is having on Ghana’s daily life. Just note, that the Ghanaian President John Attah Mills is as overtly Christian as you’ll ever get. He declared a National Prayer and Thanksgiving Day and days of fasting for his nation, and like his predecessor, unashamedly quotes the Scriptures in public speeches (things that I doubt Abbott will ever do).

Ben Ofosu-Appiah writes: Prayer, thanksgiving and fasting are no substitutes for hard work, creative thinking and visionary leadership…..

Look at all the unproductive hours spend on all nights, in so called prayer camps, on fasting, and long and endless church services. Take a person who attends an all night church service on a week day for example. He is useless at work the next day. He goes to work to sleep all day and his productivity is zero! But he collects his wage for no work done. And there are many all night church services all over the place on week days. Who do we blame for the sorry state of our economy then?.....

I once counted over 55 churches within a five mile radius, It was 2 o'clock in the afternoon on a weekday and the church was full with people praying. The question I asked myself was, How do these people earn a living? Where is the productivity, how can the nation develop if most of the workers are in church? Jesus said give to Caesar what is Caesar's and give to God what is Gods'. But unfortunately the people of Ghana feel praying constantly even during business hours will give them the prosperity they crave and it will be like "manna from heaven"……

They can sit through 6 hours of evangelism but cannot stay at the office or the work place whatever it is for 2 hours without having to leave for a couple of hours because they have things to do. If we applied our attitude to Church to everyday life and our Jobs, productivity would increase and the prosperity would filter through and inward investment would come through because we'd be seen as hardworking and reliable. These investors see our attitudes and priorities and take their business elsewhere and we sit back and wonder why life is tough.

Sam, as I’m hounded by time poverty I’d like to leave you with these thoughts:

Regardless who comes to power on the next election, it should make no difference to the church collectively and individually (in Australia), to fulfil its commission. We can still proclaim repentance, the forgiveness of sins and the hope of eternal life. Churches can still accomplish the task of ‘making disciples from all nations’.

I doubt that either an atheist Labor or Liberal leader will gag the Christian voice to the point where we’re not allowed to speak any more. You can count on one thing, they still need our votes! We can still go about our church business regardless who’s in power. The antichrist is not around the corner just yet.

Personally, I don’t buy into the paranoia about ‘the killing of innocent babies’ etc. A 16 year old who’s been raped by her father and desperately wants to abort, will find a way to do it whether it’s legal or not. Legislation neither stops nor produces behaviours, it simply exposes them and introduces penalties.

The introduction of a Blood Alcohol Limit has not stopped drink driving and speed cameras have not stopped speeding. Drugs and firearms are illegal, but that doesn’t stop people who want to use either of them.

On a final note, in God’s total sovereignty, whoever gets elected will be with His permission. The result will not ‘fly under his radar’.

Hmmmm.....
If I may cut in.

There are several issues to consider. Notwithstanding the fact that Gillard requested the G-G to dissolve parliament and hold a general election on the 21st August, the following points remain pertinent.

1) Whilst there have been many changes of leaders by parties in opposition, this is the first time in Australian political history that a first term PM elected by the people and approved by the electorate has been removed in this way. It is both unprecedented and the speed and modus operandi was astonishing--its significance should not be understated. Notwithstanding the constitutionality or technical legitimacy of what has happened, it was without question, undemocratic as the people did not get the opportunity to pass judgement on Rudd's performance. Rudd had a platform/manifesto that was given the approval at the last election.
Clear and simple, this was the party putting the party's interests first. It is one of the more serious flaws of the Westminster Parliamentary system.
Gillard may very well make a good PM. She is intelligent and a good communicator. However, there have been some real policy blunders that she played a significant part in. Will she make a "great" PM? Maybe, may be not, only time will tell. We need to pray for all our leaders.

2) We need to be careful of the lure/complacency of "abandonment theology"(the idea that nothing can be done to transform/change our community for the better therefore we shouldn't bother trying). This notion is unbiblical and anti-thetical to Kingdom living. A Gospel without power(dunamis not "political power" of course) is not the Gospel Jesus preached. The possibilities for Christians to impact all spheres of life, including politics, should be seen as a positive. Any effort to silence the Christian voice should be viewed as suspect.

3) I believe we can all agree that just because crime, and evil of all kinds occurs in our communities on a daily basis, does not mean we are not to respond to it or leave evil unpunished. After all, this is the purpose of the law, and whilst we can also agree that we cannot "righteousize" our community through legislation alone, we understand that laws are an instrument of the state designed and ordained by God to deal with the lawless and evil that may occur. Righteous laws should be pursued to the detriment of evil--never the opposite. If evil wins out, then we have to question the basis of those laws. Of course, the debate almost always hinges on to what extent legislation should reach. We may disagree on specifics of laws. For example, most Christians agree with "Thou shalt not kill" but many find it justifiable to excuse abortion or militarism/war--both of which involve killing. (Most abortions are not due to incest or rape, they are the result of the failure to utilise contraception.) To argue for a distinction between the sacred vs secular seems to be disingenuous. Whilst we do not live in a theocracy, Christians are called to be citizens of the Kingdom first. This should have real and tangible implications for life here in our democracies on earth.("Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven".)

4) Christians are called to be "salt" and "light" in our communities and therefore our response ought not to be to raise a standard of righteousness against the world, but serve as a compass point or signpost/witness to the new life and hope of the Kingdom. (This is how slavery was abolished.) Therefore, Christians must be politically engaged and aware and the church, whilst remaining apolitical(or a swinging vote), needs to have its prophetic voice heard on moral issues of national significance.

5) As to whether a Christian PM is better or not, whilst I would personally prefer our PM to be a believer, I would agree that being a Christian does not necessarily make a better leader.

6) Gillard is pro-Israel and has held this position for some years. She is likely to be the most pro-Israel Labor PM ever. Rudd(A Christian) failed to vote with Israel on a recent UN resolution that effectively condemned Israel(see the "Goldstone Report").
Australia was involved in the liberation of the state of Israel and was the first nation to vote in favour of its formation at the UN in 1947/8. It is likely that whichever party gets in, both will likely be supportive of Israel. The difference is often in the tone of the government's response to the rhetoric of the MSM(mainstream media), and anti-Israel groups.

7) Australia's formation and development has unquestionably relied heavily on Judeo-Christian principles. This is evidenced through our system of government, law and a rich Christian heritage. Sadly, Australia can no longer be truthfully described as a "Christian nation"--we are more accurately "post-Christian"-- a pluralistic secular society which has pursued policies of multiculturalism that have fundamentally changed the fabric of our nation's religious and ethno-cultural identity. There is no longer the same socio-cultural-religio-legal-political homogeneity of our Anglo-Saxon past. This has resulted in fundamental changes that have been tumultuous, but in actuality present the church with incredible possibilities to impact the nation and world--every nation tribe and tongue. It is very likely that those policies designed to bring about the demise of Christianity will actually ultimately help in the ascent of Christian belief. As people of faith, we need to always see the potential for kingdom expansion.

Thanks for reading. I enjoyed the blog and discussion.

Nicely put Mihael.

I guess in summary to Sam forming a decision on who is the best leader or party is not as back and white or simple as it seems.

At best a decision on politics could based on two fronts - the morality/philosophy of the individuals in the collective parties, and the policies which stem from this.

If this were represented by four bags of mixed lollies, 2 red bags for labour and 2 blue for liberal (each has a bag representing the individuals in the party the other the policies).

Now to make a decision based on one large lolly in the party bag - would probably not be a good idea. That lolly might be the first to get eaten. On the other hand not all the lollies are what they seem, some have different layers and what is at the core is very different from the outside. So it is not easy to work out whether this bag is that good or not.

On the other hand, we could look at the policy bag. This too has all sorts of goodies to taste. We could pull out a small black licorice (abortion if it is a state election) and decide on this and a few other tidbits alone that the whole bag is bad. However because it is a mixed bag there are all sorts to sift through, some bigger than the other. To be fair we would need to sort and examine each lolly in detail for its short term and long term effect. Might taste good now with a bitter centre later... or the reverse.

In the end we could try and make a decision based on the contents of 2 red and 2 blue bags bags... now that will require a lot of careful tasting- probably more than anyone can swallow and we all like and dislike different lollies in the bag.

Yet we have only just started. There are also a whole lot of smaller independent bags that we forgot about... they seem to contain lollies that are more similar, there are the minties - white with purity and fresh breath from heaven, then there are the hash-cookies from mother earth and so on and so forth.

So really it has never been and will never be a simple choice between one party leader and the other... nor should it be based one or two issues. Unfortunately the reality is much more complex than the fantasy.

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