Israel Folau and Apologetics in Sports

(Vili) #1

Israel Folau

Hi all
Recently I read some news about the Australian Rugby Player Israel Folau (note above), specifically about his recent posts towards homosexuality. To be honest, I don’t agree with the way he portrays this particular post (I haven’t really tried to look at the full context of the situation, but I do know that this isn’t the first time that he’s posted online in regards to homosexuality; he expressed his disagreement with the SSM vote in Australia a couple of years back, and it was much more well meaning in my opinion, compared to this)

I was wondering how someone could defend (as a scenario) their faith from situations like this, but I wanted to go further as to ask if it MIGHT be a good idea to maybe teach someone (like Folau) about Apologetics and how they can use it in the media, and has this ever been done before? I understand this can be easily solved by looking into the context of the stuff that Folau has said, but has anyone ever effectively (besides apologists) defended the faith when faced under issues of secular media? Would this be a good idea for ministry?

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(Vili) #2

So, no ones going to reply to this?

If it seems too sensitive, I can delete it, no biggie. :slightly_smiling_face:

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(SeanO) #3

@AlphaOmega I think it would be great to train those in the eye of the media to be wise in how they communicate their faith :slight_smile: I would hope they are part of a local Church that is already equipping them. What do you think a ministry that did this specifically would look like? In my opinion, by serving the Body of Christ as a whole you can indirectly influence people that are in these types of positions.

(Vili) #4

The way I see it, I feel it should already be somebody that is both a famous athlete and yet has already committed to developing a Christian Mind (Based on JP Morelands book) in order to have this sort of Ministry in Sports. Maybe that somebody could have experience with media personnel as well, but this is just an idea.

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(SeanO) #5

@AlphaOmega It’s a neat idea - sports ministries can be a very effective means of sharing the Gospel. So equipping those that are in the best position to start such ministries / be a light in those places could have huge impact.

(Anthony Costello ) #6

@AlphaOmega

So, I’m not exactly sure what your question is? Is it about Israel Folau’s view on same-sex marriage and whether or not it is a good view? Or is it about how he presented his view, i.e. more about the method or the tone in which he went about speaking on the issue?

I am not familiar with Rugby, so I don’t know who this is. I am assuming he is a celebrity of sorts. Now, if your question is about training people who have a wide social platform in apologetics so that when they speak about things of the faith, they do so in a well-informed and charitable manner, then I am all for that. Of course, I don’t know how you can convince someone to do this unless you have a personal relationship with them. Moreover, it seems to me that just having some good arguments does not necessarily mean you will present them in a winsome, loving or effective manner. That is also going to depend on the person’s personality, their spiritual maturity, and probably the context in which they are speaking.

That said, if there were one group of folks that I would love to see get better training in Christian philosophy and apologetics, it would be Christian politicians. This is where I think a ministry that focuses specially on training Christians who want to go into local politics might be a good idea.

Hope this helps,
Anthony

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(Vili) #7

Thanks @anthony.costello

You’ve answered my question just fine. I was curious on anybody’s opinions on if it’s a good idea to start an Apologetics Sports Ministry, but I also agree on what you have said about Christians going into politics.

But after having a discussion with a fellow Christian in Israel, I realise that may not be an option. Sure, who knows, God may call someone to do this sort of thing, but looking at the obstacles one has to go through, it includes not only training as an athlete but trying to overthrow the stereotypes that the media has placed on Christianity for so long. You might have noticed that all popular athletes that are Bible Believing (if they are) are rarely mentioned for their faith. And in the case of Folau, he doesn’t do it in a way that seems loving, and possibly to a point where he never considers the context of the bible as a whole, so that just sort of puts fuel to the fire. The way my friend described it, the media has multiple ways of preventing the truth from being heard, or st least to the point where tidbits of it are dispersed, but not enough for everyone to get the full idea (Athletes and The Stereotype being one of those ways for the truth to be prevented)

Now I have no doubt that if God called someone into a ministry that dealt with the media’s portrayal of Christians, He would use that person to turn it over its head.

But I just don’t think we’ll be able to do that by ourselves.

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