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Title: Remember that newspaper article from the Australian last year (Darwin Conference speaker notes)

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  • 1. Summary

1. Ecclesias in the middle ages and 19th Century
Sisters respected and valued in Ecclesial
life. 2. Christian Churches and their changing
attitudes 3. The important role of mothers in
the home 4. The weakening of the family and the
absence of fathers 5. Ecclesias now challenged
from within 6. The feminist agenda over the last
30 years 7. The confusion of roles Deliberate
attempt to blur the difference between Males and
Females eg. media, fashion industry, attitudes in
the workplace, roles in the ecclesia
The Vitally Important role of Sisters in the
1. Unique ability to assist children eg. Play
groups 2. Mothers role in bringing up her own
children in the home 3. Sunday school teaching
and assistance 4. Preaching work Sitting next
to seminar attendees to make them feel welcome,
following up contacts 5. Correspondence Sunday
School, Heritage College work 6. Welcoming older
brothers and sisters, providing comfort to the
lonely, attend Sisters class
The Vitally Important role of Sisters in the
7. Writing cards and letters and visiting the
sick 8. Unique role of Grandparents in
childrens lives 9. Preparing meals, suppers,
offering refreshments to visitors 10. Special
role of Aunties for nieces and nephews 11.
Playing piano, hall preparation, wine glasses
etc. 12. Unmarried Sisters and Teenage girls
Vital role models for younger girls and younger
sisters. 13. Prayer One of the most important
roles! God hears! A special role for widows (1
Tim 5v5) Galatians 2v6 Bear ye one anothers
burdens and so fulfill ye the law of Christ
The role of wives and mothers
The best guidance is to be found in the good
examples in the pages of Scripture Sarah, Ruth,
Abigail and Priscilla, for example, and the many
women who are included in the well-being of their
children by the Old Testament expression, and
his mothers name was. The effect of womanhood
on the destiny of whole families can never be
over-estimated. A good wife is dedicated to
providing by the God-given qualities of grace and
graciousness the home in which her husbands and
her childrens best spiritual interests are
served. As the husband is exhorted to give
honour to his wife, so the wife graces her
husband and the home which he has
provided. Wives have the threads of
immortality in their hands and must seek to weave
them into the minds of husband and children
alike. Woman is the binder of family life. As
she tends the injuries and harm of her children,
so she applies her soothing balm to the life of
the whole home. It is a gift which above all
others God has placed in her heart and hands.
(Michael Ashton and Harry Tennant, The Family
The Divine Perspective, p.12-13)

  • 1. Summary
  • 2. The role of Fathers

The weakening of the family and the absence of
caring fathers are the primary reasons boys are
in trouble today. (Dr James Dobson, Bringing
up Boys, p.161)
Fatherlessness is the most harmful demographic
trend of this generation It is the leading
cause of declining child well-being in this
society. It is also the engine driving our most
urgent social problems, from crime to adolescent
pregnancy to child sex abuse to domestic violence
against women. (Social historian David
Blankenhorn, Fatherless America Confronting Our
Most Urgent Social Problem p.1)
Note Only 1/3 of children in the USA will reach
age 18 with both biological parents living at
Children who feel a closeness to their fathers
are twice as likely as those who do not to enter
college or find stable employment after high
school, 75 less likely to have a teen birth, 80
less likely to spend time in jail, and half as
likely to experience multiple depression
symptoms. Boys with nurturing fathers scored
higher than the boys whose fathers were less
involved unless the father was a strict
authoritarian disciplinarian. (Yale Child
psychiatrist Kyle Pruett, Fatherneed Why Father
Care is as essential as Mother care for your
child, 2000, p.25,43)
Time out for Fatherhood
We are now seeing a generation of sons
who see little of their workaholic
fathers. Parents across Australia are
struggling to come to terms with the demands of
their jobs and the all too recent discovery that
while corporations may profit from their
dedication, the young boys of absent fathers are
footing the bill. In his best-selling book
Manhood, Steve Biddulph cautions that the culture
of work is potentially stealing from boys the
very thing that they need lengthy contact with
their fathers... What often gives, according to
researchers, is the boys. Lacking fatherly input,
they gravitate to gangs, drugs, aimlessness and
even suicide. (The Australian, 8.12.04)
Boys and violence
Now there is violence in almost every school,
not because the guns have changed but because the
boys have changed. And why have they changed?
Because popular culture has taught them that
violence is manly Protecting the family from
this culture of violence is very difficult for
parents. Its like trying to hold back the
falling rain. Nevertheless, we must shield our
kids from it as much as possible, especially when
they are young. Four prestigious national
organisations have linked violence in TV, music,
video games and movies to increasing violence
among children.. (Dr. James Dobson, Bringing up
Boys p.14)
Avertising a violent R rated movie entitled
The Descent
A world filled with violence
The Opposition leader, Kim Beazley, summed up the
problem with Society by his following comment in
parliament the day after the Port Arthur
shootings in 1996. He said that the problem lay
not just in guns but in Society itself. He gave
the following statistics
In a normal week, the average child under 18
years old, spends 21 hours per week watching
television. They spend 5 minutes per week in
private consultation with their fathers and 20
minutes per week in private consultation with
their mothers. And by the time they have turned
18, they have witnessed over 18,000 violent
Fathers Role in the Home
The example of all fathers is critical It is
the fathers responsibility to lead his family to
Gods Word. If daily reading is an onerous chore
for him, he will communicate that feeling to his
children. If instead it is the act of the day
which all the family eagerly anticipates, the
benefits will be past counting. We should never
think a child is too young to benefit. The
objective is to instill a love for God, His will
and purpose. The inspired records of men and
women who sought to please Him contain all that
will enthrall a childs imagination. Once
prompted, they will begin to enter into the lives
of those whose exploits they read. Under the
educative power of Gods Word, their
understanding will flourish. (Michael Ashton
and Harry Tennant, The Family The Divine
Perspective, p.20)
What happened to Dad?
Today its common to see the fathers role
disparaged in media, many times making him out to
be a bumbling, inept fool while the children are
saved by an almost superhuman mother. This is a
subtle but withering attack on the proper role of
the father. The effect of filling our childrens
heads with negative images of fathers, of
ignoring men who share equally in raising their
children, says Dr Ross Parke, and of showing
nothing but part-time or no-time father is, quite
simply, devastating (Throwaway Dads, 1999,
p.81) Modern literature thrives on this
carricature of the father figure yet when we see
the statistics on how hedonistic and
dysfunctional society is becoming by following
such ideas, we ask, Where have all the fathers
gone? The answer? Many have selfishly deserted
their responsibilities. But others have been
cowed by todays liberal, morally relativeistic
culture nad have slsowly relinquished their
God-given roles as providers, protectors,
teachers and nurturers. (Mario Seiglie, Good
News, p.6)
What happened to Dad?
A particularly unsettling passage from the book
of Isaiah describes society not only as it was in
Isaiahs day, but prophetically as it would be at
the time before Christs return (Isaiah
3v4-5,9,12) Yes, it was prophesied that the
fathers role would one day be mostly forfeited
in the face of an increasingly blind and lawless
society. Much of our national discussion of
youth crime, writes sociologist David
Blankenhom, simply ignores the elephant in the
room called fatherlessness. Moreover, many
analysts come quite close to viewing all
traditional norms of fatherhood not as a remedy
for the problem of youth violence but rather as a
leading cause of it. (Fatherless America, 1995,
p.29) (Mario Seiglie, Good News, p.6)
Re-establishing the Fathers authority
1 Tim 3v4 One that rules well his own house,
having his children in subjection with all
gravity Heb 12v9 Fathers corrected us and we
gave them reverence - God is like this Mal
1v9 A son honours his father If God is a Father
where is His honour? Prov 2v1-5 Father to
provide diligent Biblical instruction Prov
13v24 He who spare the rod, hates his child, A
father who loves his children disciplines them
  • 1. Summary
  • 2. The role of Fathers
  • 3. Homosexuality

The influence of Modern Culture
I am concerned not only about the sexual abuse
of boys (and girls), but also about what they are
being taught by the culture at large. Suddenly,
everyone seems to be talking about a subject that
I didnt know about until I was 11 years old. Now
we seem determined to tell every 5-year-old about
this aspect of adult sexuality. Our public
schools appear to be moving relentlessly in that
direction. Can you see how this persuasive
teaching will be terribly confusing to very young
boys who are experiencing a gender-identity
crisis? How about he other cultural influences
including television and movies, that are urging
boys and girls to think gay and to experience
role-reversal behaviour? (Dr James Dobson,
Bringing up Boys, p.127)
The influence of Modern Culture
NSW Greens leader Lee Rhiannon today backed a
decision by a party colleague to approve of
pre-schoolers being taught about gay, lesbian and
transgender lifestyles. Rhiannon congratulated
Marrickville Council for including family
diversity in its childcare curriculum and urged
all councils to follow its lead. May Sam Byrne
of Marrickville, a Greens Party member, has
approved lessons at the Tillman Park Childcare
Centre that challenge mainstream perceptions of
sexual identity. MX 29.05.06
The effect of Modern media today
Modern media entices the weaker side of human
nature, and in so doing erodes the family unit
with such TV shows as Desperate Housewives, Two
and a half Men and Wife swap (all airing during
prime family viewing time in much of the US).
Media executives and producers say they are
simply showing society in a more realistic
manner In taking advantage of the basest
human desires to milk consumers for money, media
actually corrupts reality and is on the wrong
side of family values. (Jerold Aust, Good
News, May 2006 p.10)
The Feminist and Homosexual Agenda
Two of the big problems faced by mainstream
churches today Both issues are linked
It is part of the feminist agenda to show women
as powerful, courageous, and indomitable, while
men are weak, emotional, and easily manipulated.
The entertainment industry, which seems
determined to unravel us, works hand in glove
with feminists and homosexual activists to bring
us into that brave new world. Its presentation of
male and female role models is almost always
perverted or warped in one way or another. (Dr
James Dobson, Bringing up Boys, p.177-178,179)
The Role of Fathers
In 15 years, I have spoken with hundreds of
homosexual men. I have never me one who said he
had a loving, respectful relationship with his
father. Many of these fathers loved their sons
and wanted the best for them, but forever reason
(perhaps there was a mismatch between the
fathers and sons temperaments), the boy
perceived his father as a negative or inadequate
role model. Dad was not who I am or not who I
want to be. a boy needs to see his father as
confident, self-assured and decisive. He also
needs to be supportive, sensitive and caring.
(Clinical psycologist, Dr Joseph Nicolosi,
Preventing Homosexuality A Parents guide,
quoted as the foremost authority on the
treatment and prevention of homosexuality today,
by Dr James Dobson in Bringing up Boys, p.118)
The Role of parents
When combined with the absence or disengagement
of fathers, we can begin to understand why the
incidence of homosexuality appears to be rising
and why more and more children and teens are
reporting that they think they are homosexual. As
the institution of the family continues to
unravel, we are laying the foundation for another
epidemic like those that have occurred
historically. Moms and Dads, are you listening?
This movement is the greatest threat to your
children. It is of particular danger to your
wide-eyed boys, who have no idea what
demoralisation is planned for them. I would ask,
Is there anything more important than taking the
time to protect your kids and to be there when
they need you most? I think not. (Dr James
Dobson, Bringing up Boys, p.127)
The influence of modern culture
There is not a single example, as I write, of a
healthy family depicted on network programming
that includes a masculine guy who loves his kids
and is respected by his wife Invariably, sitcoms
today feature at least one gay or lesbian
character, who is cast in a sympathetic role. It
is a powerful force in the culture. One
overriding goal of homosexual activists is to
influence the next generation and to recruit
children to their movement, if not to their
lifestyle. How can impressionable boys and
young men possibly discern what it means to be a
heterasexual male, let alone a disciplined
husband and father, which this tripe is fed to
them every night and when their own dads are
nowhere to be found? (Dr James Dobson, Bringing
up Boys, p.168)
  • 1. Summary
  • 2. The role of Fathers
  • 3. Homosexuality
  • 4. Homosexuality and Christianity today A
    case study

Philip Yancey comments
Among the marchers were at least 3000 who
identified themselves with various religious
groups the Catholic Dignity movement, the
Episcopalian group Integrity, and even a
sprinkling of Mormons and Seventh-Day Adventists.
More than a thousand marched under the banner of
the Metropolitan Community Church (MCC), a
denomination that professes a mostly evangelical
theology except for its stance on homosexuality.
This last group had a poignant reply to the
beleaguered Christian protestors they drew even,
turned to face them, and sang, Jesus loves us,
this we know, for the Bible tells us so. The
abrupt ironies in that scene of confrontation
struck me. On the one side were Christians
defending pure doctrine (not even the National
Council of Churches has accepted the MCC
denomination for membership). On the other side
were sinners, many of whom openly admit to
homosexual practice. Yet the more orthodox group
spewed out hate, and the other group sang of
Jesus love. (Whats so amazing about Grace?
Philip Yancey comments
The whole notion of a gay church seems bizarre
to me. I have met celibate, non practicing
homosexuals who wish desperately that another
church would welcome them, but have found none.
I feel sad that the churches I attend are
missing out on the spiritual gifts of these
Christians, and sad too that the MCC denomination
seems to me so fixated on sexual issues.
(Whats so amazing about Grace? p.173)
Yancey then tells the story in this chapter of
his friend Mel White, a pastor of an evangelical
church, who left his wife and children to live in
homosexual relationship. Despite going to great
lengths to show that White is just different,
Yancey does however go on to say that Mel and I
have deep differences. I cannot condone many of
the decisions he has made. In saying this
however Yancey makes no comment on what the Bible
says about the issue or what his own views
actually are, except that he doesnt agree Mel
White should be inducted into the priesthood. He
conveniently says, I am not discussing my views
of homosexual behaviour, only my attitudes
towards homosexuals. ..
Questions to ask
  • Why wont Yancey tell us what his real views are
    on homosexuality, or at least what he thinks the
    Bible says?
  • Why does Yancey spend page after page showing how
    loving and how Christian these homosexuals
    are compared with the harsh, hard line, right
    wing Christians who are appalled by the
    arrogance of unrepentant homosexuals? What is
    the benefit of this? Should we therefore
    tolerate homosexuality?
  • Why is it that those who are disgusted by the
    homosexual lifestyle are shown to be bigots and
    unforgiving while the homosexuals are presented
    in a good light?
  • Why is it that in this whole 15 page chapter
    (chapter 13), there is hardly any reference to
    Scripture? If Scripture is not the basis, then
    how can we trust that Yanceys opinions are
    right? Of what use are all these stories if we
    are not willing to look at the Bibles
    instruction? So what does the Bible actually

God offers forgiveness
Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit
the Kingdom of God? Do not be deceived Neither
the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers
nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders,
nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor
slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom
of God. And that is what some of you were. But
you were washed, you were sanctified, you were
justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ
and by the Spirit of our God. 1 Corinthians
6v9-11 NIV
God offers forgiveness
God opens the door for forgiveness to homosexuals
who wish to forsake their previous way of life
and turn to Him. Gods forgiveness is total and
absolute, but this is conditional on repentance
and a forsaking of the old way of life (Luke
15v10 Acts 3v19). Yancey however spends just so
much time trying to convince us of how nice these
homosexuals can be, but why nothing on Gods
forgiveness? Why doesnt he emphasise that
homosexuals can be forgiven? Why doesnt he
encourage them to repent? The important issue
here is surely Gods wonderful promise of
forgiveness Luke 13v3 Except ye repent, ye
shall all likewise perish. Isaiah 55v6-7 Seek
ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon
him while he is near Let the wicked forsake
his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts
and let him return unto the LORD, and he will
have mercy upon him and to our God, for he
will abundantly pardon. Acts 17v30 Now (God)
commandeth all men everywhere to repent.
Philip Yancey continues
At one point, a TV interviewer asked Mels
parents on-camera, You know what other
Christians are saying about your son. They say
he is an abomination. What do you think about
that? Well, the mother answered in a sweet,
quavery voice, he may be an abomination, but
hes still our pride and joy. That line has
stayed with me because I came to see it as a
heartened definition of grace. I came to see
that Mel Whites mother expressed how God views
every one of us. In some ways we are all
abominations to God - All have sinned and fall
short of the glory of God - and yet somehow,
against all reason, God loves us anyhow. Grace
declares that we are still Gods pride and joy.
(Whats so amazing about Grace? p.170-171)
Comment and Questions
  • Yes, we all have sinned and fallen short of the
    glory of God. However he misses the critical
    issue. There is a difference between unrepentant
    homosexuals and repentant brethren in Christ.
    Brethren in Christ who are repentant, have been
    baptised and have forsaken their old way of life
    are counted righteous for Christs sake (Rom
    3v24 Eph 4v32). How can unrepentant
    homosexuals be placed in this category? Because
    of his belief in the doctrine of substitution, it
    all gets back to Yanceys main catchcry, that
    God loves us anyhow. Lets now ask the
    following crucial questions
  • Are unrepentant homosexuals really Gods pride
    and joy?
  • What Scriptural evidence is there to show that
    an unrepentant homosexual is no different in
    Gods sight to those faithful believers who are
    Christs brethren?
  • What is the practical result of all this? Is
    this really where Yanceys philosophy about grace
    leads us? Is it that nothing matters in our
    lives either, because God loves us anyhow?

God offers forgiveness
Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven,
whose sin is covered. Blessed is the man unto
whom the LORD imputeth not iniquity, and in whose
spirit there is no guile. For this shall every
one that is Godly pray unto thee in a time when
thou mayest be found surely in the floods of
great waters they shall not come nigh unto
him. Psalm 32v1,2,6
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