In defence of the Christian Worldview
Greg Bondar explains why he is thankful for the work of the ACL
Greg Bondar is grateful that the Australian Christian Lobby (ACL) and other campaigning organisations defend Christian viewpoints.
As a long-time follower and spiritual supporter of ACL, the tagline “Make a public stand for truth!” has resonated with me as Galatians 1:10 (ESV) always comes to mind:
ACL, fear and grace
“For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ.”
It is critical that despite the constant backlash from the left-leaning political groups, media, and indeed governments, that Christian organisations like ACL, FamilyVoice, Freedom for Faith – along with individuals such as Bernard Gaynor, for example – continue to speak out in the public arena, even at the risk of being misunderstood and poorly judged.
Advocating in a secular world on social, moral, and ethical issues such as abortion, conversion therapy, euthanasia, the traditional family and, particularly, sexuality are issues like-minded Christian organisations have often been criticised for by the hegemony of the left.
In Marxist philosophy, cultural hegemony is the domination of a culturally diverse society by the ruling class which manipulates the culture of that society — the beliefs and explanations, perceptions, values, and mores — so that the imposed, ruling-class worldview becomes the accepted cultural norm.
The mores, or social norms that are widely observed by the left within the Australian culture today, are determining what is considered morally acceptable or unacceptable. This trend is making assisted suicide, abortion, homosexuality, gender transitioning, woke-ism, gender neutral pronouns replacing words like ‘dad’, ‘mum’, ‘he’, ‘’she, ‘breast’, become the accepted norm. This is not only wrong but also a political plague promoted by the left menace of the intersectionality school of social disruption.
Neutrality is not an option for the Christian.
As a countervailing force to the hegemony of the left, like-minded advocacy groups like ACL, FamilyVoice Australia, Freedom for Faith and so on are srtiving to flourish, despite the left-leaning media, with mainstream natural families. Christians are losing any advantage they may have had in our society. In conversations with others, we can no longer assume once all-common views like God exists, the Bible is true, and Jesus Christ is the only way of salvation.
Sceptics and cynics are ever ready to bring down Christian advocacy organisations. The biblical worldview is the most logical and defendable of all, and every Christian should be able to offer evidence for basic tenets of the faith. One of the greatest apologists of the last century, Dr. Greg L. Bahnsen, has always held the view that we need to be better equipped to defend the faith and share the gospel. As 1 Peter 3:15 says – ‘… always be prepared to give an answer …’
Neutrality is not an option for the Christian.
According to Bahnsen, “we must not be satisfied to present Christianity as the most reliable position to hold among the competing options available. Rather, the Christian faith is the only reasonable outlook available to men.”
An apologetic methodology that claims Christians should be “open”, “objective”, and “tolerant” of all opinions when they defend the Christian faith is like a person who plans to stop a man from committing suicide by taking the hundred-story plunge with him, hoping to convince the lost soul on the way down.
No one in his right mind would make such a concession to foolishness. But Christians do it all the time when they adopt the operating presuppositions of unbelievers. There are no “neutral” assumptions about reality.
How then do we defend Christianity in the public square? Issues such as ACL’s stance on Israel Folau’s homosexuality social media post was an answer to prayer for Christians but a significant blocker for non-Christians looking to engage with Christianity. One outcome was that the left leaning “cancel culture” immediately started using social media to organise an outcry over ACL’s stance leading to swift reprisals such as calling for Rugby Australia to sack Folau.
The sad fact is that anyone can organise a social media protest, whether their outrage and called-for response are justified or not. In this regard, whilst ACL kept the faith, and rightly so, the public, with support from mainstream media, viewed ACL as supporters of bigotry and hate.
Do we ignore research (by McCrindle Research) which found that Australians said they were turned off by public figures or celebrities sharing their faith, as indicated by 70 per cent of respondents in that survey? Interestingly, 1 in 3 also indicated that this strongly repelled them from investigating religion and spirituality.
My view – take pride, ACL, knowing that “blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me”. (Matthew 5:11, NIV).
Unfortunately, too many defences of the Christian faith today cede to the unbeliever by arguing on their terms.
Like the church, ACL is just one voice among many speaking into a Christian’s life. A church’s worship habits may occupy two hours of a Christian’s week but a podcast, radio shows, cable news, social media, streaming entertainment, and other forms of media account for upwards of 90 hours of their week. In this regard, ACL have done well to capture a significant slice of the Christian social-digital media market.
Make no mistake, truth in the public square is being attacked and suppressed by the ‘forces of evil’ and ACL, like FamilyVoice, must continue to bring a Christian perspective to politics despite, I say again, the risk of being misunderstood. Biblical Christianity is a philosophy of life (worldview) surrounded by many opposing philosophies (worldviews).
Unfortunately, too many defences of the Christian faith today cede to the unbeliever by arguing on their terms. This generally ends up “proving” at best only the possibility that a god exists — not the certainty that the God of Scripture exists. But we should argue from a “presuppositional” perspective that builds on the sure foundation of that which we believe. That is, we must believe that God’s Word is the absolute authority in all areas of life and thought.
The defence of Christianity is simple: we argue the impossibility of the contrary. Ironically, those who assault the Christian system must actually assume the Christian system to do so and hence why there is no such word as ‘atheist’ – for one must first acknowledge the existence of God to then subsequently reject Him.
That is, they must assume a rational world for which only Christianity can account. In fact, atheism assumes theism. If the God of Scripture did not exist, there would be no man in any real world to argue with — there would be no possibility of rationality by which an argument could be forged, and there would be no purpose in debate!
Paul spoke powerfully when he declared in Romans 3:4, “Let God be true but every man a liar.” (KJV).
The God of Scripture, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, is the ultimate and necessary foundation for a rational, coherent worldview. Every other system is built upon a lie — the fallible ideas of sinful and rebellious man. The Christian system begins with: “In the beginning God …” and from that foundational reality, all the rest of a rational worldview falls into place.
Christian advocacy organisations such as FamilyVoice, ACL, Australian Family Association, Freedom for Faith etcetera continue to be on my prayer list. Ut Fidem.
Greg Bondar serves as the NSW State Director of FamilyVoice Australia. He has been working as a Senior Executive within the not-for-profit, government, and vorporate sector for more than 30 years. Greg was formerly the Federal and NSW State Director for the Christian Democratic Party of Australia (Fred Nile Group), where he oversaw the 2016 federal elections and various by-elections. He was also a Senior Adviser to the Minister for Transport and Regional Development in the first term of the Howard Government.