Are the Bush Fires the Judgment of God?

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Whenever there is a tragedy or disaster in our world, conversations about the judgment of God often emerge.

This is a sensitive topic that needs to be handled with care. Are the recent bush fires in Victoria the judgment of God? What about that person who died in a car accident last week, that person who died of sickness yesterday, or that couple who haven’t been able to have children? Are they too under the judgment of God because something bad has happened to them? Is any negative experience of human suffering an indication of the judgment of God? These are difficult questions and none of us have God’s full perspective on life’s uncertainties. 

In Jesus’ time, there were a number of tragedies that took place (see Luke 13:1-5). Pilate killed a some Galileans and mixed their blood with sacrifices (“human evil”) and then a tower (the Tower of Siloam) collapsed and killed eighteen people (“natural evil”). Jesus addressed these two current issues but he didn’t explain ‘why’ they had happened. What he did say, however, was insightful. He said, "Do you think that these Galileans were worse sinners than all the other Galileans because they suffered this way? I tell you, no! But unless you repent, you too will all perish. Or those eighteen who died when the tower in Siloam fell on them-do you think they were more guilty than all the others living in Jerusalem? I tell you, no! But unless you repent, you too will all perish."

Jesus makes it clear that when something bad happens it doesn’t necessarily mean that the person(s) affected by suffering are necessarily sinful or evil. Good and evil does not fall on people in some sort of vindictive manner. Jesus doesn’t say that these people are ‘under the judgment of God’ either.  

Final rewards and punishments are not given out in this life. The Bible teaches that the righteous often endure suffering and calamities while sometimes the wicked seemed to be blessed. Like Job, we have to learn to accept both good and trouble from God, then trust in his providence (Job 2:9-10). God always acts from the standpoint of eternity and we need to live our lives from that perspective as well.

We live in a fallen world and this often results in human suffering (for both Christians and non-Christians). Some people escape and others don’t. Every day people somewhere in the world have to deal with the effect of sickness, misfortune, and death. This includes natural disasters – whether in the form of an earthquake, a tornado, a volcano erupting, a landslide, a flood, or a bushfire. 

Is God judging our State of Victoria? Maybe so, but God told Abraham that he would even spare Sodom and Gomorrah if there but a few righteous people in the city. Are there not more than a few godly people in our State? I think there are. Let’s be careful not to immediately associate every situation of human evil (e.g. arsonists lighting fires) or of natural disasters (e.g. naturally started fires) with the judgments of God.

Finally, we need to realise that we are in the time of God’s favour NOT of God’s judgment. The first sermon Jesus preached was from Isaiah 61. He finished reading after this sentence … “to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favour.” He then closed the book and sat down saying, “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.” What is interesting is that Jesus stopped reading in the middle of a sentence. The rest of the sentence says “… and the day of vengeance of our God.” He didn’t read that because that is not this time. Jesus introduced a day of grace and mercy for people, and we are still living in that time. His second coming will be the time for vengeance and judgment. That doesn’t mean that people today won’t at times suffer the consequences of their actions but this is not the day of God’s judgment.

Let’s focus our efforts on helping those affected by these terrible bush fires right now, like the Good Samaritan did.

143 Replies to “Are the Bush Fires the Judgment of God?”

  1. You are right Mark. We have to be very careful not to pass it off as a judgement from God, after all his ways are not our ways.
    Rather than focus on whether this is God’s judgement or not, christians should maybe ask themselves what God would be expecting them to do, to bring him glory.

  2. hello, just a comment after finishing a study on the book of job from Moody church hour. We get mixed messages from suffering + isaiah 45v7. God works in my heart through suffering even though my theology doesn’t fit so i guess i find myself in a place where i don’t know what place theology does and should play as for the link between abortion and judgment there were bushfire around before those laws were passed

  3. Are the Bush Fires the Judgment of God?
    God rain on the just and the unjust. Christians have their problems just as non-Christians do.
    We have a Wonderful Saviour and Lord. Jesus the Messiah is not a vindictive God. He feels the pain just as much if not more than those who suffered such catastrophes.
    Our Beloved Lord Jesus has told us that these catastrophes would happen. Matthew 24:4-7.
    These are the signs of the time of His soon return.
    The main point to keep in mind is to abide in Him and His Word in us.
    He has said, “But he who endures to the end shall be saved.” Matthew 24:13

  4. Thanks Mark for a wonderfully comforting message. It saddens me to read people are already playing the blame gain and there are those who who are now stepping into the limelight with the attitude of ‘told you so’ such as the self-appointed prophets. This re-enforces the need for the message of Alan Hirsch and Michael Frost’s book ‘ReJesus’ and for us all to be ‘Red Letter Christians’.

  5. Mark,
    Thank you for your compassionate and well balanced report of the tragic bushfires.
    My heart aches for all the people affected as I watch the news through tearful eyes.
    It’s wonderful to see that “Australia Unites” (as the news reports) in this tragic crisis
    to help provide for the physical needs of the victims. Can’t help but wonder how many are saved for eternity. Their eternal life matters to God as much as their needs and it should matter to us. Our God is a loving gracious God of truth and justice. My prayer is that many people will turn to Jesus and remember the Lord. We need to seek the Lord always and inquire of Him. He is mankind’s only hope in troubled times, as Stephen wrote and Jesus IS coming! Shalom peace and prayers.
    Ps. Check out the difference between vengeance and judgement.
    ***Definition of Vengeance:–noun
    1. infliction of injury, harm, humiliation, or the like, on a person by another who has been harmed by that person; violent revenge: But have you the right to vengeance?
    2. an act or opportunity of inflicting such trouble: to take one’s vengeance.
    3. the desire for revenge: a man full of vengeance.
    4. Obsolete. hurt; injury.
    5. Obsolete. curse; imprecation.
    ….with force or violence.
    *** Definition of Judgment:–noun
    1. an act or instance of judging.
    2. the ability to judge, make a decision, or form an opinion objectively, authoritatively, and wisely, esp. in matters affecting action; good sense; discretion: a man of sound judgment.
    3. the demonstration or exercise of such ability or capacity: The major was decorated for the judgment he showed under fire.
    4. the forming of an opinion, estimate, notion, or conclusion, as from circumstances presented to the mind: Our judgment as to the cause of his failure must rest on the evidence.
    5. the opinion formed: He regretted his hasty judgment.
    6. Law. a. a judicial decision given by a judge or court.
    b. the obligation, esp. a debt, arising from a judicial decision.
    c. the certificate embodying such a decision and issued against the obligor, esp. a debtor.
    7. a misfortune regarded as inflicted by divine sentence, as for sin.
    8. (usually initial capital letter) Also Biblically called Last Judgment, Final Judgment. the final trial of all people, both the living and dead, at the end of the world.
    Source: Dictionary.com

  6. Please support the bushfire victims by shopping at Coles this Friday.
    Coles will donate this Friday’s (13Feb) profits from its 750 stores nationally to the Government’s Bushfire Appeal Fund in partnership with the Red Cross.
    Customers will also be able to directly donate to the Victorian Bushfire Appeal Fund at all Coles stores. Donations can be made at all Coles Supermarket checkouts from Monday 9 Feb.

  7. This nation was founded by Christian Father in 1902. I think with blessing comes responsibility. I don’t think the legalising of abortion is a manifestation of responsible government. In Danny’s post he indicates the removal of Gods protection particularly over the state of Victoria. I think a true prophetic voice warns Gods people of coming events before they happen, such as in the book of Acts 11:27 When a prophet warned of a coming famine over the whole world.
    Part of pastor Danny’s dream in October has by all appearances come to pass.
    The Bible does indicate that the Lord will do nothing before he reveals it to his servant the prophets.
    As we walk with God daily, he wants his children to know what is going to happen. He has demonstrated this throughout the Old Testement and even in the new.
    So my response to this time of crisis, is God have mercy on us, we need rain, and the “fear of the Lord” to come upon this nation.
    Showing compassion mercy and looking for places to serve the needy up in the fire areas, being Jesus hands and feet.

  8. Most of us would like to see fewer, if any, abortions in our state and nation. However, to create a direct link between a recent law passed by some politicians to the suffering of those in the bush fires is preposterous. It is poor theology as well as a lack of wisdom and compassion on his behalf.
    Danny Nahlia does not speak on behalf of the views of the majority of Christians and churches. He is acting like a self-appointed prophet who speaks only for himself. In moments of tragedy such as these, it would be good if he would simply be quiet and stop being such a ‘loose canon’, doing nothing to help the cause of Jesus Christ here on earth.

  9. I learn so much theology from reading your blogs. Thank you so much for this. There is no stronger argument against such behaviours as Danny’s than God’s living word. And words like his do so much damage in misrepresenting God. Mark I’m interested in how you respond to Sam’s post about Danny’s comment about God removing his protection. I’m sure there is a theological reason why that scripture is being taken out of context. It’s so scary how scriptures can be twisted to support wrong thinking. As Christians how can ever know enough about God’s word without taking courses in Theology so we can protect ourselves from this sort of misrepresentation?

  10. Hear hear, Mark!
    May God save us from those in positions of influence such as Mr Nahlia, who claim to know the mind of God, misusing their authority by projecting their own judgmental agendas into His mouth.
    As for the “prophetic dream” of October, all and sundry back then were made aware that this summer was likely to be an horrendous one for bushfires. You didn’t have to be an Isaiah or a Jeremiah to see this tragedy coming.

  11. Thank you Mark for your words of truth from the bible – the source of truth. Well meaning people can use prophetic gifts in error, therefore it is so important that whatever we say must be in line with God’s Word. As followers of Christ, we must set the tone of compassion, love and practical help to anyone in trouble or need at any time, and most especially at a time of such tradgedy as these fires have brought. None of us are in a position to point fingers of judgement, but instead, let us all as believers raise our prayers to God for the salvation of the people in this wonderful nation he has given us.

  12. Mark, great to hear your voice as a leader of one of the larger congregations in Melbourne. Speaking up against the link between the recent ‘Abortion laws’ and the bush fires.
    You have done so in a considered and appropriate manner.
    Thanks
    Scott

  13. Mark,
    Thankyou for your response to Mr Nahlia’s proposition. I heard Derryn Hinch yesterday give a monologue response to the press release and whilst I disagreed with Mr Nahlia’s summations I was also wrestling with how to put into words a response to Mr Hinch’s often one sided view of Christendom. As I reached the end of the 2nd paragraph in your response I almost let out a very loud “Halleluyah” in my office of around 80 people! A well thought out and considered response is just what this needed. Thank you Mark.

  14. Below was my post on Mr Nahlias blog, as it will probably be moderated (deleted), I have added it here for an additional viewpoint.
    It was just after a post cheering that the judgemental views were biblically correct.
    “Sure Revelation says the whole world will be destroyed.
    ..but it also says to remove the plank from ones own eye before pointing out specks in others. I’m assuming everyone here pointing the finger of judgement is perfect and never sins.. never lies.. is never angry or proud..etc.
    By saying these comments you are saying God ranks abortion as worse sin than pride.
    Yet pride was the first sin, surely a really bad one? God threw lucifer out of heaven for pride.
    How many proud pastors do you all know.. are they all about to be burnt too?
    ALL have sinned!!! probably everyday!!! (my hand is high too), so best to thank God for his grace and mercy to us all, and start loving people into the kingdom… not attempting to judge and blame them in.
    Comments like this are blaming, accusing and judging…which is actually biblically INcorrect.
    – Judge not lest you be judged.”

  15. It’s getting late and I don’t know if anyone will get to read this but I’ll post anyway.
    I have “a word” for Danny Nahlia. “keep your mouth shut! You’ll serve the kingdom better that way!”
    You’ve given me compelling reasons to comment. For the record, I am a self-confessed megachurch refugee with a strong allergic reaction to Pentecostalism and especially Danny Nahlia’s brand. If I lived in Melbourne I probably wouldn’t go to Mark’s church but that doesn’t stop me from acknowledging that his comments and teachings are balanced and more closely aligned to the Bible than other megachurch pastors in this country. I also enjoyed an interesting digital dialogue with his wife a few posts ago and was impressed with her views on controversial biblical topics. I make this intro so you can put perspective on my comments that follow.
    I had a quick read of Danny Nahlia’s bio on his website and he sounds (at face value at least) well-intentioned and sincere about wining souls to Christ. But his zeal cannot compensate for his foolishness (or lack of wisdom). His public statement is a product of bad theology made even worse by abysmally poor exegetical and hermeneutical work (biblical interpretation). He claims to have obtained his credentials from AOG (how comforting!) but some of the greatest heretics in the church today (from several denominations) have PhD’s in theology. Credentials help but don’t insulate one from deception. But let’s leave that for another blog.
    His ‘revelation’ was based on a dream and 2 Chronicles 7:14 the proof text darling passage of revivalist charismatics: “if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land”.
    These words were given to Solomon in a dream (!!!) after he dedicated the FIRST EVER Hebrew temple that took him 7 years to build. He and God entered into a covenant on that historic day in the nation of Israel. Replacement Theology claims that the new covenant is a replacement of the old (as opposed to an extension or addition to it) and that means we can take ANY promise given specifically to Israel and apply it to a New Testament church because though these promises were made to Israel they are actually fulfilled in the Christian Church, not Israel.
    Now there are numerous prophesies, especially Messianic, given in the Old Testament concerning the new (Peter quoted Joel on the day of Pentecost (Acts 2:21), Jesus quoted Isaiah in the synagogue (Luke 4:21) etc), but to take all the promises given specifically to Israel and transfer them to the church-literally-it is a dangerous ground to take, because you then have to adopt the curses as well since they come with the package. Some of which include affliction with incurable boils, tumours, festering sores and unstoppable itching (Deut 28:27), cannibalism (Lev 26:29) and the tither’s favourite curse (Mal 3:9).
    Now Danny Nahlia took all this concept even a step further and applied it to the whole state of Victoria at large, believers and unbelievers alike. Call me a simpleton but the words “my people, who are called by my name” cannot possibly include the whole state of Victoria indiscriminately. And where exactly in the Bible does Danny look to make a case for God granting or removing “conditional protection” from a state or a nation in the NEW covenant? Any protection privileges a Christian enjoys is a direct result of his covenantal relationship with God through Christ who has made us “perfect” in God’s sight (in position), not because of some legislation that favours the Christian agenda.
    And SAM, the example you quoted “that the Lord will do nothing before he reveals it to his servant the prophets” does not fit in a New Testament context. The office of the OT prophet has no place in the new because in the NT “In the past God spoke to our forefathers through the prophets at many times and in various ways, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son” (Heb 1:1). NT and OT prophets are not apples-with-apples in their function. The famine warning that Agabus gave is more the exception than the rule. NT prophets affirm rather than foretell like fortune tellers, especially on public issues like these. Once you step outside the Scriptures and claim extra-biblical revelation, if you accept it, you have to treat it as authoritative as John, Mark, Luke and Paul’s writings. Because if IT IS God who really spoke, he should be no different to the God of the Bible. I’m yet to meet someone who has the guts to say that what God told him personally is as binding as the words of Matthew or Jeremiah. How do you prove it is God and not your own imagination or bias, let alone you know who? This kind of extra-biblical “revelation” is dabbling to a spiritual realm than can’t be tested for authenticity.
    THE FALLACY OF THE ABORTION ISSUE MANIFESTO
    It’s a no-brainer that abortion is murder. But that’s just it, it is one of the many types of murder and one of the myriad sins committed daily in a fallen world. Is decriminalising abortion going it stop it altogether? NO it’s just going to make it harder to find a doctor that will do it.
    Is prostitution a sin? Yet it’s legal. You can obtain a licence to open a brothel in Victoria if you meet the legal requirements. Is God any happier about legalised gambling or prostitution than what he is about abortion? Or about ethically reprehensive but perfectly legal marketing campaigns? (Google “whisper marketing”) Sin is sin. If we were to test all the federal and state legislations against biblical standards we would find plenty to get upset about.
    Danny is one of those well intentioned but grossly misguided Christians who believes that the kingdom of God can be advanced by changing legislation that ‘Christianises’ the community values. Here’s a newsflash. Some of the strongest churches in the world have been established in nations that are totally anti-Christian to the core (Muslim states, former USSR, China etc) I haven’t seen God burn those nations down because their laws are anti-Christian.
    YOU CANNOT LEGISLATE MORALITY!!! “for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing!”(Gal 2:21) If the Spirit of God doesn’t convict people of sin, punitive legislation isn’t going to do it. (Has America’s crime rate reduced because of the death penalty?)
    Last thought for the day. If you claim God said something that he didn’t then you’re making him out to be a liar. I have a feeling God doesn’t like being called a liar any more than we do. In our puny world we sue people for defamation of character.
    OK enough ranting for one day!

  16. Sam,we were not founded by ‘Christian Father’ in 1902. It was 1901 – and that’s not being picky, get the important facts straight. Know when your nation was born. And it wasn’t a gathering of pastors who signed off on the constitution, it was our politicians. And I question the dream… just because someone enjoys placing the word pastor or prophet before their name does not legitimise everything they say or do. I’m sure many Victorians have had dreams of fire, but they are not linking it to their issue of the week. He’s been wrong before, and embarrassingly so. Mr Howard to be re-elected anyone? Amazing how quickly THAT vision disappeared from his website! What next? He has a dream in which he is wearing nothing but his underpants?
    I’m sick of the hate and the superiority of many Christians. The opposite of Jesus.

  17. This is a time when Christ-followers can bring glory to God and help bring others to God by not being judgemental, accusing, prophesing….
    We need to comfort, help, emphatize, etc and show love as Jesus would do. This is when we bring others closer to God or we drive them away by being self-righteous, “we know and have it all” mentality.
    Non-believers are watching and listening. A slightest deviation from the showing of the love of God will just drive a wedge to their believing.
    So, as true christians, one should always pray to God for wisdom and guidance in the way we talk and act.

  18. John i really liked your comments i think you are right.Common grace i think its called with the rain falling on everyone. The promises apply for confidence and having a good outlook but bad things still happen (job). Prophets today Jesus Christ holds that office don’t be allow tv style prophets such u in they have no power to save and even if they do have visions who cares jesus is still god in the flesh

  19. Danny stopped short of saying that the alleged arsonists and firebugs were merely executing the will of God and hence should be praised for their obedience!
    Perhaps their rallying cry was “catchthefire”.
    I cannot help but wonder how he would have responded if a Muslim mullah preached that the fires were Gods punishment of Christian Australians because of their immorality in permitting their women to not wear a veil!

  20. I am so grateful to God that I attend a church that is blessed with so wise and compassionate a leader as Mark Conner

  21. My husband and I are survivors of the Ash Wednesday fires and we have very vivid memories of the experience. We experienced the blessing of God in so many ways. It was because of the disaster that we came to know Jesus as our Saviour and Lord… God is not in the business of punishing anyone, he simply keeps his promise in Romans 8:28. People who say this is God’s judgment need to get to know Him. God is always at work for the good of everyone who loves him and even those who don’t.

  22. Mark, great to see your strong comments on this issue and well done for taking a strong stance. I believe your comments are totally appropriate.

  23. Reading your post comments only goes to say that our Lord Jesus is just and merciful. To hear of testimonies of people receiving the Lord only goes to show we need to pour out more “Unconditional Love”. Let us come together in unity in prayer as we work as a community to reach out to these bush fire victims and the helpers.

  24. What amazed me was that someone was saying that God’s judgement is on the state of Victoria, but not on Australia . When you think of it it’s so silly. We have plenty of abortionists running around here in Queensland killing lives in the womb…. After we had severe rainfall and flooding in North Queensland no one was saying that God’s judgement is on Queensland. But if you follow the logic then if the bushfires are God’s judgement on Victoria the flooding in North Queensland should be the same for Queensland! Sounds a bit silly doesn’t it…

  25. Thank you Mark for alerting us to the article by Danny Nahlia. Once again the Words from Our Beloved Lord Jesus has proved true in Matthew 24:11
    “My prayer is that many people will turn to Jesus and remember the Lord. We need to seek the Lord always and inquire of Him. He is mankind’s only hope in troubled times,” Marija.
    My very sentiment exactly and thank you Marija for your post. I stand in agreement with you.

  26. Thank you Mark. We are so privilidged to have such a leader as you. A leader who leads!! Leading a wonderful teaching team and a compassionate congregation.
    I believe God is with us all the time during both good and bad. He carries us tenderly when the going gets tough and doesn’t ask for thanks. I try to remember ALL the time that God is good, God is faithful, God is wonderful. He is our loving father. Do not judge, because we do not understand God’s thinking, simply trust in Him. One thing is sure, we must not put ourselves on equal footing with God.
    All the knowledge and learning in the world can be misinterpreted and errors made. Sometimes misinterpretion is dangerous (Danny’ comment). Most of us act in good faith with the knowledge and life experience we have at the time and do our best. I am so glad I am not a member of Danny’s church because with the comments he has made I am afraid it would turn me away from our Loving Father instead of bring me closer to Him.
    To round this out, I repeat I am privilidged to have a leader who is a compassionate and good thinking man.
    Thank you Mark

  27. Hey Mark,
    I have always thought your articles were balanced & insightful but this article seems emotional & the scripture contexts used seem out of place.
    Jesus said, “But unless you repent, you too will all perish” thus implying we are all sinners & non of us have the right to God’s protection unless we repent & seek Him. This is exactly what Danny is saying. He never said it was God’s judgement & that God caused it. He said he feels God has lifted His hand of protection off Victoria due to its sin. This is definitely biblical. The devil is then the one who brings the destruction.
    I am disappointed an influential church like Citylife is so passive when it comes to dealing with the uncompromising Word of God. We must walk in love but at the same time call sin sin. The wages of sin are death & thus people who refuse to accept & acknowledge God will eventually suffer this penalty both on this earth & afterwards. That is just the reality.
    We must share the truth, in love, that only Jesus & the protective hand of God can save & protect people on this earth & for eternity. Otherwise people who reject the Lord & embrace their sin are left to the hand of the enemy, which has no mercy & brings only destruction.
    Anyway, the wheat & the chaff, goats & sheep etc etc are being divided as Jesus is on His way. Best we get ready, stop playing church & actually get serious about God & His Word.

  28. Ps – Job was living in fear not faith. Thus he wasn’t as perfect/sinless as everyone keeps professing. Living in fear is sin. The whole Job story doesn’t justify all Christians negative experiences, ie I am holy & righteous like Job & this is just a test. Sometimes it is sin. What’s the problem with admitting this, repenting & getting back on track? I though that was the whole message of Christianity. Sinners needing God for salvation, protection, provisions etc etc.
    Job 3:25-26 (Amplified Bible)
    For the thing which I greatly fear comes upon me, and that of which I am afraid befalls me. I was not or am not at ease, nor had I or have I rest, nor was I or am I quiet, yet trouble came and still comes [upon me].

  29. VENGENCE IS MINE SAYS THE LORD
    The debate rages on as to whether God brought the fires in Victoria, or allowed them to happen as a judgement for the sins of the Victorian government. Whether you believe, or disbelieve, that Pastor Danny Nalliah heard from the Lord about the fires is irrelevant. It is clear that these fires are a sign of the times. (Matthew 24:3-14)
    Yes, God is a loving & merciful God, but He is also a just and righteous God. If you believe that He would not allow bad things to happen to good people, then you have either not read the bible, or you choose to ignore the hundreds of scriptures in both the Old and the New Testament, which say otherwise.
    Uzzah died when God’s anger was aroused against him. Uzzah was just trying to save the Ark of the Covenant from falling, so why did God kill him? He died because he disobeyed the Law of the Lord. (1 Chronicles 13:9-10)
    In the New Testament eleven of the twelve disciples did not die a natural death.
    Stephen, a man full of God’s grace and power, performed amazing miracles and was stoned to death for it. Stephen saw the heavens opened and Jesus standing at the right hand of the Father. Jesus didn’t stop the stoning, He watched Stephen die. (Acts 7:54-59)
    There are many discussions about the book of Revelation as to the timing of the rapture, but I have not heard many on the fact that one quarter of the world population will die when the fourth seal is broken (Rev 6:8). When the 6th seal is broken the people cry out “Fall on us and hide us from the face of the one who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb”.
    When the sixth trumpet blows, a third of the remaining people are killed. (Revelation 6:16).
    When Job went through his trials because God allowed the devil to test him, what did God say to Job? He didn’t answer Job’s question about why He had allowed it to happen, but rather demanded that Job answer His question. “Who is this that questions My wisdom with such ignorant words”? (Job 38:2)
    “Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth? (Job 38:4)
    If you have any doubts about how mighty God is, or how small and puny you are, read Job chapters 38-41.
    Deuteronomy 28 gives the blessings and the curses. Keep the commandments and be blessed. Don’t keep them and be cursed.
    Australia has a strong tradition of “mateship”. All Australians are equal under the law, but this does not mean that everyone has equal wealth or property. Some people view God as their “mate” in heaven, but make no mistake God is a Sovereign, Righteous and Holy God and He cannot condone sin. Do not underestimate the Holiness of God. God is calling us to repentance and holiness in these last days. God cannot lie. If He said the curses will come upon the nation if they do not obey His Commandments, then they will. It is time for us to repent of our sins and to bring this country back into submission under God, or suffer further tragedy.

  30. Hello all… lots of interesting posts on the fires and Danny N. Thank you Mark for your post, I learnt from it. I actually think that both sides of this argument have a point – I’m sure this will ruffle some feathers though, but I’ll risk the fallout.
    Firstly, it should be clarified that Danny DIDN’T say that the fires were caused by God. He said that the ungodly decisions of men moved the state out from underneath God’s protection, and so the devil then has access to kill, steal and destroy. It is quite horrible to blame the Lord for such despicable fires. However, I think that some people confuse the issue of spiritual cause-and-effect, with the outcome being God’s will. It is not God’s will that any should perish, but millions do… so there are other influences acting.
    Given that there are spiritual ramifications for each of our personal decisions in life, whether good or bad, the same is true for decisions made by governments – the Lord deals with people on a personal level and he also deals with nations. I believe that the church should be providing the comfort/support to the individual people affected by this disaster – taking the love of God to the people. I believe that when Jesus replied to the disciple’s question about God’s judgement in disaster (Mark’s post), he was concerned for the individual man’s soul, and so directed His answer towards each person requiring a personal, living relationship with the Lord. Yet there are numerous OT examples of Israel or other nations experiencing judgement because of their actions as nations. And some of the prophetic books state that in the future countries will be dealt with on the national level because of the decisions they make.
    Also, some people equate judgement with physical death. I am not convinced that this. And a judgement can be in the positive as well as the negative. Israel was judged and went into captivity, yet we have the nation of Israel today. I think to linger too much on judgement clouds the issue – however, I do believe that our actions (whether personally or as a government) can open the door to the devil. I also know that sin in one area of our life, can allow attack in another area. Both Jesus and Paul said that Satan was the current god of this world – he is the one bringing tragedy.
    I also think it is dangerous to think that a majority view held by the church must be God’s view and that the loud mouthed, brash prophet is necessarily wrong. There is a ditch on either side of the road – best not to fall into either side. I do think that what we are seeing here is different perspectives coming from different callings/giftings, mixed with human imperfections on both sides.
    Danny’s calling is very “out there’. He often makes me uncomfortable, and I sometimes think he is wrong, though John the Baptist and Jesus made just about everyone uncomfortable at some stage too (not that Danny’s in their league :)). I do think his comments are very, very poorly timed. I was initially offended at his comments. I do think they will now make it more difficult to connect some individuals with the Lord, though really, the Lord is bigger than all of this. And even when the Lord walked the earth, many scoffed and were offended at him, so I don’t know that we should be too concerned about the church being brought into repute.
    To paraphrase Rob Bell (Everything is Spiritual dvd), it might be that a God who sits outside of the creation would say of both sides of the argument… “Yeap”.

  31. My prayer is that the Church of Jesus Christ will not become a divided, weakened body and lose it’s power in effectiveness to reach the MANY unsaved. The devil loves nothing better than to see division among Christians to keep us BUSY! Time is SO short and there are MANY standing in the valley of decision today. Jesus IS coming! That is HIS promise to us! We need to be found going about our Father’s Kingdom business, when He does come!
    LORD JESUS, have mercy on us all to forgive and RESTORE! Shine the light of Your glory on all things hidden in darkness and destroy the works of the evil one. Keep us standing strong in our faith and united in Your love, under the precious blood covering of Jesus. Thank You Abba. Amen

  32. I and many of my friends know Ps Danny personally through our church and while he does much good work and is generally well intentioned, these claims are an embarrassment to us and it is good to see a respected pastor give a more sympathetic and balanced view.

  33. Thank you for your insight into the matter. I was able to share your point (which is correct by the way) to other friends (which had taken a negative view of the church on this matter). Thank you.

  34. Well said Mark. Keep leading with honesty and integrity; the Christian community is blessed to have you in leadership. Keep your eyes on Jesus, and keep providing others with the direction to seek him for the comfort they seek

  35. I have read a great many people castigating Danny for claiming ‘judgment’ and ‘punishment’ from God. Unless the media release from CTFM has been edited since its initial release, neither word appears ONCE in the statement, so most of the comments here (including the title of Mark’s post) strike me as totally irrelevant because they don’t accurately address what he wrote. It seems to me that the removal of protection (which is what IS mentioned) is something quite different, as Job experienced. And Job was not directly ‘punished’ by God, as far as I’m aware.
    I’m no supporter of Danny and don’t go to an AOG – in fact, I have virtually no interest in his ministry – but I think some of the comments here are quite unwise themselves. In fact Nalliah’s statement actually lays the blame for this at the feet of the devil, not God. Maybe I’m missing something here, but it seems to me, if you want to disagree, disagree with THAT.
    It seems to me, that the MEDIA has used those two emotive words to get a response, folks, and it’s sure worked, hasn’t it? It’s a sad day when the MSM is dictating the response we should have to a brother, whatever we may think of him.

  36. It is clear that Ps Danny Nalliah did not outright say that God caused the fires, but the implication is very strong that He (having perfect foreknowledge) allowed the destruction & death to occur BECAUSE of the abortion law being passed.
    My problem with that is not that God would remove His hand of protection because of a nations stubbornness in rejecting Him, because that is clear both in scripture and in reality, however what I do have a problem with is this: how can we stand up and say to anyone – let alone in public – that such and such a tragedy was a result of such and such a sin. Surely no-one can claim such knowledge! I believe it is the height of presumption to say such things, and therefore it walks a very fine line on being judgemental.
    I believe that God has appointed a time to judge, I believe that is why Jesus came. He came and bore all our sins and all the punishment for all of sin for all of mankind for all of time. Therefore by saying that God has, even just by removing protection, allowed a massive tragedy because of one particular sin, we are saying that the work of Christ was not complete and we deny that all judgement has been set for an appointed time – sounds a bit vindictive to me. There have been dozens of laws across our nation that could be at least in part considered immoral, and in all but vague symbolism Australia is a secular nation, independent of God… so surely this paints God as both highly inconsistent, and forgetful of the complete atonement of Christ.
    So to me, even from a theological point of view, the comments of Ps. Danny Nalliah do not fit with the God of the Bible.
    Let alone the complete insensitivity of the timing, nature, and intent of the comments. As well as the example Christ set of identifying himself with suffering, not “classifying” or “politicising” it.
    Love your heart Mark Conner.

  37. Mark I want to thank you for this post. It was very well balanced and helpful.
    On this issue I have two thoughts on the above post and comments.
    1. When Go brought judgement on His people in the Old Testament it is usually happened after sending a number prophets to warn them over a period of time. Not many things just happened without warning. God always gave the people a chance to turn back to Him.
    2. All prophecies need to be tested. Does it line up with God’s Word? Does is build up, encourage or challenge the hearers? Has it come to pass?

  38. SIMON, BARRY, K
    It should be a prerequisite to read the entire blog thread before posting comments, as much of what you’re arguing against has already been addressed.
    An important disclaimer once again: I’m neither into megachurches nor Pentecostalism, particularly Danny’s kind. I don’t go to Mark’s church as I live in Brisbane nor would I go if I lived in Melbourne. I hope this is sufficient to convince anyone reading this that I have no vested interest whatsoever in defending Mark, his beliefs or his church. I am however interested in defending the truth!
    SIMON & K Your arguments contain logical threads but YOUR PREMISE is wrong. It is not founded on biblical thinking or biblical evidence. This thinking is naïve, simplistic, totally unbiblical and ultimately flawed. Where do you see in the Bible that God offers ‘conditional protection’ or protection in general in the NEW Testament TO AN ENTIRE NATION? For that matter where do you see ANY biblical guarantee against 100% FULL protection for Christians individually? The NT is full of warnings about enduring suffering of all kinds. Just wanting to live a Godly life is enough to put you in the firing line (2 Tim 3:12)
    And sorry to disappoint many of you, but THERE IS NO SUCH THING as a “Christian nation” in New Testament terms. There is “the church” both local and universal which is part of EVERY nation. That’s the “bride” Jesus is coming back for. You can’t compare any modern nation to the OT state of Israel. Israel was unique as it was the ONLY nation on earth with a theocratic government (governed directly by God). You are applying OT thinking in a NT world. The way that believers relate to God has totally changed in the NT because of Christ.
    Here’s a reality check. Nations like Zambia, Nigeria, Tonga, Samoa and Brazil have more Christians per capita than Australia could even dream of. They are the closest thing to a “Christian nation” if ever there was one. Yet they suffer from all sorts of problems like any other country on earth, especially economic ones. No special protection privileges there. And yet the UK which is undoubtedly one of the most godless, Christless and secular nations on earth, has enjoyed unprecedented prosperity in the last 20 years or so. If God was to judge nations because of their evil or godless regimes, He should have obliterated Afghanistan from the face of the earth as the Taliban was by any stretch the most evil government in modern history. Then there’s Uganda, Zimbabwe etc. I have a sneaking suspicion that God is “holding back” because He is merciful toward those who live there and wants to save them through the gospel of Jesus Christ. Like Mark said yesterday, we are now still in God’s favour not judgement (yet). That will come and when it does there’ll be no doubt that God caused it. But now, the door is still open for the harvest.
    Therefore the idea of “national protection” does not come from the New Testament. Now unless all the news bulletins are fabricated lies, I see bad happening on every corner of the planet. What is God exactly protecting the ‘nations’ FROM? Aids is spreading, more wars than any other time in history and lately the financial meltdown that has swept the planet. Furthermore, as Barry mentioned Matthew 24:3-14 Jesus foretold of natural disasters that would be part and parcel of the end times. Their frequency is increasing all the time.
    Think about your assumptions for a moment.
    • If God “removed” his protection from Victoria, we must assume that it was there before but not there now? What exactly was God protecting Victoria from, because last I checked Victoria has had plenty of problems like every other state, economic, social, environmental etc.
    • The “trigger” for God’s protection removal from VIC was the decriminalisation of abortion. So other than abortion, God didn’t seem too bothered with legalising gambling, prostitution or other ungodly practices. Is this somehow God’s pet hate, because I read somewhere that pride scores pretty high on his sin-hate list and he goes out of his way to oppose it (James 4:6)
    • Is God somehow more angry with Victoria than any other state with “ungodly laws”? He should have burned Sydney down a long time ago with their legal permissiveness towards the glorification and glamorising of homosexuality (mardi gras anyone?)
    • How does He feel about Tasmania’s legalising of same-sex marriage? Here’s an excerpt from Tasmania’s Same-Sex Marriage (Dissolution And Annulment) Bill 2008 Part 1 Section 6: “The Supreme Court of Tasmania shall, in the exercise of its jurisdiction under this Act, have regard to: (a) the need to promote, preserve and protect the institution of same-sex marriage as the union of two people of the same sex to the exclusion of all others voluntarily entered into for life; ……(c) the means available for assisting parties to a same-sex marriage to consider reconciliation or the improvement of their relationship to each other” etc. etc
    • Why remove protection from regional Victoria and not metropolitan Melbourne? After all Melbournians are closer to where Parliament meets.
    If you want to define God’s treatment of the ungodly before the day of judgment arrives, use Romans 1 as a guide. What does it say, does God obliterate people? NO! He delivers them over to their reprobate minds and their own lusts. That’s a form of judgment.
    Finally, the last unbiblical assumption is that in the New Covenant we are somehow guilty by proxy for other people’s sins. So a Christian who voted Liberal in the last state elections is held liable and needs to repent for policies that the Labour Government has passed. Why else is Danny’s website making this appeal? “CTFM has called upon all Australian Bible-believing God-fearing Christians to repent and call upon the Lord Jesus Christ for His mercy and protection over Australia once again” and “Can we stop the fires? Yes we can! But it will take God’s children to rally together and repent and cry unto Him as in 2 Chronicles 7:14”
    Isn’t repentance meant to be a “change of mind” and after you repent you stop practising that sin anymore? What’s the point of Christians repenting by proxy for acts of parliament if those laws continue after CTFM’s prayer and fasting?
    NT repentance, forgiveness or judgment, take place at an individual level (2 Cor 5;10, Gal 6:5, Rev 20:12). We may intercede for others so God’s Spirit can lead them to repentance, but we can’t repent for them.

  39. Hi,
    I agree that God did not send these bush fires or use an arsonist to do the job for Him but obviously He knew what was coming and showed a person who would be willing to speak out and warn the body of Christ so we could stand in unity and pray BEFORE the event and perhaps this terrible tragedy wouldn’t have occurred or it would have been on a much smaller scale with no loss of life.
    We are in the last days and God does use prophets, the Bible says in Acts 2:17″In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams.” ….I would be very careful to judge whether someone is a prophet or not based on a difference of opinion.
    Christians now need to pull together and assist the fire victims physically, emotionally and spiritually. Jesus loves them and can bring good out of this terrible event God did not plan.
    Here is a quote from Billy Graham’s daughter a few years ago after the terror attacks in the US…
    “Anne Graham Lotz: I say God is also angry when he sees something like this. I would say also for several years now Americans in a sense have shaken their fist at God and said, God, we want you out of our schools, our government, our business, we want you out of our marketplace. And God, who is a gentleman, has just quietly backed out of our national and political life, our public life. Removing his hand of blessing and protection. We need to turn to God first of all and say, God, we’re sorry we have treated you this way and we invite you now to come into our national life. We put our trust in you. We have our trust in God on our coins, we need to practice it.”

  40. Seems like the harsh criticism of Danny Nahliah is getting quite personal? There are obviously other issues going on here! Let’s rather pray for those who persecute us, especially if they are fellow Christians…we are all part of the same body.

  41. Quotes from Billy Graham’s daughter, defending “the prophet”, God warned him to warn others so he could avert the disaster (the 2004 tsunami, Bali bombings and 9/11 victim families should be outraged since they got no warning). What exactly were they meant to do to “avert” it? Repent for other people’s sins?
    If modern Christians placed the same confidence for truth in their Bible as Muslims place in their Koran, these blog threads would be half their size. We look for explanations and rationalisations anywhere but the Word of God. Folks, anything outside the Bible is a faulty GPS!
    We’ve made it all about abortion, being God’s trigger to remove a national protection that He never promised to give and have assumed that in this scummy, fallen, sin stained world (hhhmmm Australia must be part of) no other sin gets under God’s skin other than abortion. What a low view of sin we have and how RIDICULOUS is this logic???
    Our sense of discernment is second to none (we’ve had a discernment by-pass). I agree (with whoever said it) that when the antichrist appears, many of today’s Christians will follow him hook, line and sinker because they have no discernment whatsoever.
    I’d like to go to bed tonight thinking that Jesus Christ continues to forgive sinners who in their sinful state have or approve of abortions. Same as gays, murderers rapists, child molesters and every other despicable sin imaginable. GREAT NEWS!
    [PS I am not making light of abortion. I am a 46 y.o. abortion survivor as my parents wanted to abort me because they were poor and my arrival was “unscheduled”. The non-Christian obstetrician refused although he was regularly performing abortions, but never on the mother’s first childbirth. God’s mercies!]

  42. To Simon, Barry K, Mark R, and Doreen,
    Spare me the semantics about “Danny didn’t say it was God’s punishment, but instead it was the removal of protection” etc, etc. The clear implication was that Victoria’s abortion laws were responsible for the fires. To use a verse like “But unless you repent, you too will all perish” is using scripture out of context to the extreme, as that verse is referring to the final judgement.
    To say “Yes, God is a loving & merciful God, but He is also a just and righteous God…” in defence of Nahlia in this case is illogical and offensive. Tell me with a straight face that the picture of an 8 month-old baby girl I saw today, who died a horrible death at Kinglake, represents someone who God executed his justice and righteousness upon (or allowed to happen).
    Apart from the apalling theology sprouted by you people, common sense tells me that a loving, merciful and righteous God would not punish, or remove his protection from, innocent babies in dreadful bushfires, in response to abortion laws which kill other babies. Please.

  43. Hi my work colleague (a non-believer) was really upset by The Age article ‘Fire ‘divine retribution’, says minister’ (11/2/2009). Even as a non-believer, he believes that this article is just wrong. He mentioned that even if he does not believe, he believes God would and could not be so unloving as to act in this manner.
    Thanks Mark for your response to this article. The CityLife newsletter email arrived quite timely in my inbox at work. My colleague and I had just been discussing the article which he raised to my attention, knowing that I was a Christian.
    Your blog comments have re-affirmed what I had been trying to assure my colleague. Hence, this was just excellent to receive and pass on to my friend.
    Keep on writing and sharing. It really helps.
    Here is another article I found in the Age today:
    http://www.theage.com.au/opinion/failing-to-understand-the-nature-of-an-understanding-god-20090211-84of.html?page=-1

  44. Thanks so much for this post, Mark. Only last night I was reading Luke 13 and I thought, wow, Jesus’ response to disasters is so different to the doom and gloom prophecies that have been cast around.
    I think that if we ask “What Would Jesus Do?” I am pretty sure He would’ve responded in love and mercy – and I’m pretty sure He expects us to, too.
    I lived in Gippsland for 23 years, and many of my family and friends are in the fire affected areas. What these towns need is practical assistance, not judgment and guilt trips.

  45. aren’t we all getting a bit personal here? i think itys’ ok to disagree but the anger heard i some of your voices through email is appalling and not what Christians should be like and whether pastor nalliah is right or wrong, you can say his comments are wrong but to show so much anger and call him theologically not sound is a different matter especially when we all haven’t heard from him directly. calm down everyone and focus the attention out there and not get into the “christian politics”

  46. agreed leeann, i dont know who all you people are but if you don’t watch it you will be doing christians and non christians a diservice!

  47. Well said, Mark! My pastor here in WA would refer to self-appointed prophets like Danny as “space cadets” or as you said, “loose cannon”.
    I guess our best response is to continue to be prayerful about all this, and be alert – and on the watch for we can often tell who’s a space cadet by their lack of accountability.
    “Test all things, hold on to the good.” 1 Th 5:21 (NIV)

  48. I’m not sure anger is a sin… when Jesus was confronted by the money sellers in the temple he pretty much lost it! Righteous anger. Compliance is one of the great faults of Christians in general in my experience. And by the way, we have heard from him directly – via his media release! Follow this link, and I’m sure that’s about as direct as you get.
    http://www.4bc.com.au/displayPopUpPlayerAction.action?&url=http://media.mytalk.com.au/4bc/podcasts/pastor.mp3
    And by the way… how DO you hear anger through email? Just a question. Lee Ann, if we think Danny is bringing Christianity into disrepute (not that it needs any extra help) we have a duty to call him on it. And as he seems to be moderating the comments on his site quite closely, this place is the next best.
    Barry, thanks for the advice. I would hate to be doing you a disservice.

  49. It is ridiculous to claim that God “remove His protection” over a piece of legislation. Look around..every state and council in Aust is made up of laws and regulations governing lots of other things such as alcohol, brothels, sex shops etc etc and these laws and by laws have existed for a long long time. If God is ticked off by “bad law”, I am sure He would by now be glaring at every state and municipality in Aust. By the way, China (one of the most cashed up economy at the moment) has a one child policy for decades and they have recorded natural disasters every couple of years dating back to BC. Please don’t tell me that is also legislation.

  50. Doreen, I dont think it is wise to blindly beleive the prophesy of any man..who ever they are!!!
    We are supposed to test prophesies and hold fast that which is good. Just because someone says they are a prophet does not make every word they utter directly from God. We should test them, take the words and see if they line up with the Bible.
    Please understand I am NOT implicating Danny by this next verse, but it is very sobering and scary scripture to highlight why we should test everything..
    The words of Jesus..
    Mat 7
    21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. 22 Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ 23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’
    So Jesus said we will actually have “shmistians” who will actually do ‘wonders’ and cast out demons and prophesy and claim to be Christian, yet God will say I never knew you..
    I’d say that is sobering enough to test what any man says or does before blindly accepting any prophesy.
    MANY will be decieved by false prophets..

  51. nicole, why don’t read this blog? because this blog is for people that are only against pastor naliiahs’s comments and the pastor nalliah’s is for those who do? People get so dragged into the thinking of their leaders – it’s scary! we should all be able to have our own opinions and be able to voice them too.

  52. Hi Mark, agree with your post and share your sentiment about the tragedy. (Lost a colleague at Marysville).
    Got to say though one comment on your blog (and I know they were some very emotive ones) made me uneasy. While hanging to the truth that God is love, we got to be careful we don’t swing the pendulum to another extreme. For example “God is always at work for the good of those who love him and even those who who don’t” is ‘eisegesis’.

  53. Hey lee ann
    The difference is on this blog your opinions are argued with..
    on Catch the fire opposing opinions are deleted..
    That in it self should raise some questions.

  54. You spelt “Nalliah” wrong.
    Nalliah’s dream, as reported last year, involved people being gunned down in the streets – then fire. He’s failed to mention the gunman this week. Why?
    You commentary leaves me confused? Do you think God interact in our current, Earthly lives in any way?
    If “yes”, then how do you determine which good and bad things are His handiwork?
    If “no”, then what is the purpose of prayer?

  55. Well said Doreen, Lee Ann and Barry. You are entitled to have your opinion too!
    It seems to me that if more time was actually spent PRAYING for the nation than writing scrolls of unkind words about another Christian Pastor we could rapture tomorrow!!
    Nicole, unfortunately, you are sounding very bitter and nasty not emotional. To quote you “and if you don’t like people calling him to account – then maybe don’t read this blog 🙂 You did say that none of us is perfect; we are all sinners, so why then should people (who are agreeing with you) be calling Ps. Danny Nalliah to account? Jesus is the Head of His Church. He is more than able to correct a son or daughter, so let’s leave Jesus to do His work in His body and perhaps focus on getting the love-walk right and being an example to younger Christians.

  56. Hello Cheryl,
    Now you are judging Nicole. Are you her judge? She is not bitter or nasty at all, just very passionate about what she believes to be the truth. None of us are perfect for we ALL fall short of the glory of God. We shall all stand accountable before God oneday to give Him an account. We all need to speak the truth in love. Don’t we? 🙂 Truth without Love is Brutality & Love without Truth is Hipocracy. We need to employ both Truth & Love. Jesus weeps in intercession for us all. Have a nice day and keep on praying in tune with God’s heart where it’s needed.

  57. OK I may be suffering from CRD (compulsive ranting disorder) and am seriously trying to develop a VEA (verbal economy addiction). Reading some of the posts on the last page sounds like school kids squabbling in the yard. “How dare you tell me to…”
    Once again, some of the comments show that people either don’t read their Bibles, don’t understand what they’re reading, or simply don’t care what it says.
    The comment “don’t read this blog if…” is fair play to me. We visit here voluntarily not because we have to, especially those of us who don’t go to CityLife. If the “atmosphere” offends you it makes sense to abandon this blog. I used to blog on a particular US site where a lot of Lutherans and Calvinists on heat used to visit. It became obvious to me after a few weeks that a lot of those holy bloggers from the Self Appointed Doctrine Police were gargling on cyanide smoothies before they blogged, so it became impossible to have a civil dialogue without wearing a mask to protect oneself from the toxic fumes. Sulphur was shared with reckless abandon. I stopped blogging there. Not my cup of tea, so it was the most logical thing to do.
    This IS an emotive issue and some of us expressed our emotions in different ways. I am guilty of the two longest winded posts, not because I had nothing better to do yesterday but because I wanted to explain (especially for those naïve and innocent readers who posted before me) why and how Danny’s comments were wrong.
    If you consider God as your father, Jesus as your brother, Lord and Saviour, and the kingdom of God as your extended family, you can’t help BUT take it PERSONALLY. Your family’s name is dragged in the mud. Danny’s motives and personal integrity are irrelevant at this stage. Whether you run someone over by accident or on purpose, you can still kill them. A life can be lost regardless of your motives. Danny’s comments were reckless, ill-timed, unwise, unbiblical and foremost PUBLIC!. And we’re meant to just sit back, bite our tongues and Que Sera, Sera, Whatever Will Be, Will Be? Refuting and correcting error (heresy by definition in this case) is OUR duty. Judging the motives and intentions of the hearts is God’s job (1 Cor 4:5) Paul confronted Peter for his hypocrisy publicly. His justification was that he “saw that they were not acting in line with the truth of the gospel” (Gal 2:14). Jesus commended the Ephesian church for their discernment and intolerance towards false apostles “you have tested those who claim to be apostles but are not, and have found them false” (Rev 2:2).
    Danny obviously stands behind his statement because in his mind he is absolutely convinced he is right. I’d like to know whether he would be willing to publicly repent, if and when he realises he was in error. Should we hold our breath?

  58. I don;t think cheryl is judging nicole, now this can go round and round and round but it’s not about judging here. I come from CL and am all for mark and nicole but we got to be careful and that’s why I’m glad that their blog is so open and honest and allows for debate and correction. I love the way they run the church, preach etc. However, I do as well sense some bitterness and nastiness in nicole’s tone and i think we need to be careful what we say and do at all times. For example, if you go into danny nalliah’s bolog, everyone is commending him- his blind followers. if you go into someone elses blog, they are being blindly praised by their followers. i know other bloggers items have been deleted, thats what makes this blog great but i think we should really be able to put our opinions forward and not be made a blind follower as such.

  59. Mark,
    I think your comments are insightful and needed. I also have made similar comment on my blog. If you would like to check it out – here it is. activatechurch.wordpress.com
    Corey Turner
    Activate Church
    Lead the Change

  60. Hello Drew,
    Yes, we aught to be careful in what we do and say as Christians. Don’t we? Presuming that Nicole is bitter and nasty is not judging her? Come on. Do you or Cheryl know her personally? Her tone is one of passion. There is a difference to being bitter and nasty. She’s a very passionate woman with a strong sense of justice.
    Real Christians follow Jesus by faith and not a person.

  61. Drew, Danny Nahlliah’s blog has everyone commending him because that is they are the only notes that they will publish.

  62. This is a devotional I received at work and just opened to read:
    Unlocking the Power
    TGIF Today God Is First Volume 1 by Os Hillman
    “I in them and You in Me. May they be brought to complete unity to let the world know that You sent Me and have loved them even as You have loved Me.” – John 17:23
    There have been certain breakthroughs in the world that have changed the course of history: electricity, the automobile, the atom, and the telephone, to name just a few. If we never recognized the applications of these inventions, we would still be sitting around in the dark, riding horses, and communicating by pony express. However, we have seen the opportunities and the applications, so the world is a different place now.
    Jesus made a profound statement that has the potential to change the world if we simply apply the truth. What if I told you that this one truth would allow people to see Jesus and respond to the gospel like nothing we have ever experienced? It is the key to unlocking the door of salvation to so many that remain lost. Yet it is the one thing we, as His children, fail at the most.
    What is this one thing? It is unity. Lack of unity among His Body of believers prevents Christ from being revealed to so many. Efforts have been made, but our Body remains fragmented and weak. Consider that there are more than 24,000 Christian denominations in the world today and five new ones beginning each week, according to the 1999 September issue of Moody Magazine. Does this sound like unity?
    God has called each of us individually and corporately to represent Christ to the world, but our independence, pride, and ego prevent us from becoming unified in the purposes of Christ.
    Are you a catalyst for unity in His Body, or an instrument of division? Are people seeing Jesus because of the unity they see in your family, your church, and among your workers? The old adage, “United we stand, divided we fall,” is not just a good battle cry; it is a spiritual truth that will determine the fate of many souls. Pray that God will allow you to be an instrument to unify His Body.
    The question is, during this difficult time, what would Jesus do?
    Peace and love to you all…

  63. Great to hear from you on this blog Rhiannon and to be reminded of the awesome blessings that came to so many out of the Ash Wednesday fires in and around Cockatoo.
    I posted the following on Danny Nahlia’s blog, but it looks like it got moderated out…so much for freedom of speech. God Bless You – GR
    i read with interest the recent comments made by Pastor Danny Nalliah of Catch the Fire Ministries concerning his dream of God exacting retribution on the abortionist lobby by bringing down fire this week on thousands of innocent victims in Victoria. i’m forced to ask whether this was the kind of ‘fire’ he had in mind in choosing the name for his ministry ? i thought it was meant to be about the ‘fire’ of the spirit, which in my understanding brings life, not death, to those it touches !
    while i share Ps Danny’s obhorence of abortion, i’d hazard a guess that if his recent campaign had been about pro-environment, then he wouldn’t have been so quick to point the finger at God. i’m reminded of a lyric in a song by the christian rock-band Casting Crowns – While You Were Sleeping (2005), which goes:
    “As we’re sung to sleep by philosophies
    That save the trees and kill the children”
    that the world is in the grip of a complete reversal of God’s intentions and that so many people are totally mis-guided about these things. but to point God’s finger at the abortion lobby misses a fairly obvious reality that the responsibility here lies more with the ’save the trees’ lobby than with the ‘kill the children’ lobby.
    to paraphrase a secular journalist, Robert Gottliebsen, Business Spectator, 10th Feb 2009: ‘Over more than a decade, a mixing of so-called ‘environmentalism’ and fire protection policy led to fundamental state government errors which, multiplied by local government decisions, created an enormous and catastrophic build-up of fuel which stoked these fires.’ some of these fires were man-made by arsonists, and in time God will certainly hold the individuals concerned accountable for their actions, but some are started by natural events such as lightning.
    200 years ago the aboriginal owners knew all about controlled burning to manage the forests through the intense conditions of the australian summer, but in the last 10 years the green lobby has made it appear ‘un-australian’ to manage the build-up of fuel to help control the inevitable fires that will occur here. so if i’d had Ps Danny’s premonition, maybe God would have told me something different.
    either way, a christian pastor blaming God (for whatever reason) for the fires does nothing but further alienate the 90% of aussies who already think that we’re wierd and totally irrelevant. i don’t like Ps Danny’s chances of getting much traction with the unbelievers in Kinglake right now.
    personally, i think he might need to consider changing the name of his ministry after his recent ‘prophetic’ outburst. rather than him ‘Catching the Fire’ i think the fire’s caught him.

  64. Common problem with web blogs is humour, body language, passion, dont translate well into typed words.
    And the same sentence does not read the same for everybody.
    You cant see the twinkle in someones eye, the smile on their face, or the concerned look as they type.
    So best not to assume what the persons “tone” is, cause you are like likely wrong..
    ..see I just typed that with a smile on my face, could you tell?
    😉

  65. I am very certain the calamities and disasters (not to mention new strains of virus, etc) are due to the fall of Man. Adam handed the keys of authority on this earth over to Satan when both Eve and Adam disobeyed God in the garden of Eden.
    It’s not because of homosexuality or abortions, prostitutions or murder, etc that the world is in such a chaotic state. We live in a fallen world and it is only expected such things happen. However we Christians have the answer – Jesus Christ, who is the hope of the nations.
    We who criticise Danny may soon find ourselves in the same boat as those who critise the government for allowing abortions, homosexuality, etc. Perhaps it is true that Danny did have a dream (though I still stand by my opinions that the bushfires are not related to God’s judgement or his removing of protection). I do not support Danny’s dream but that doesn’t mean other words from him is wrong. Perhaps if we look closer, we might find that his heart is very, very close to God in wanting Australia to stand up for Christian values. Perhaps the dream really was from God but had a mix with his passion for Australia.
    We Christians are the SALT and LIGHT of the world. Our very presence prevents (or in many cases alleviate) disasters and tragedies from happening on a greater scale.
    Let’s not throw the baby out with the basin. I’ll take the dream with a pinch of salt. Our focus should be on Jesus Christ who is the Author and Finisher of our faith. He is afterall the saviour of this world and his heart is definitely for the lost and helpless.
    Let’s not get carried away with the Christian semantics, jargons and who’s-right-who’s-wrong mentality. Have we not been wrong about things in our lives before? Let’s fix our eyes and thoughts on Christ. When we draw strength from Him, we will be strengthened to help others.
    Kaffein

  66. Well said Nicole my dear friend! My heart breaks and aches with yours for all those affected by the tragic fires. The last thing they need right now is heartless comments being made by people like Danny. God’s grace with mercy and love is the order of the day. Sending you a BIG HUG.

  67. I was hoping this would begin to die down but the naiveté and ignorance of some of the comments is pushing the mercury up again. One last shot before Mark boots me out of his blog! This makes me look like I care more about the issue and less about the fire victims. I care for BOTH but as “Christian” opinions are shared here, it is the right forum to discuss.
    Firstly, JUDY WONG: Your well meaning points are well taken. IF (I say IF in case I misunderstood you) you are concerned that we are being divisive, all I can say is that unity is not the same as uniformity and truth unites whereas error divides. We can still love people while we disagree with them. Otherwise we would have to embrace the ideas of Buddhism, Hinduism and New Age to avoid division.
    GRAHAM R: Great Post!
    To gender neutral ‘KAFFEIN’
    We almost agree except your last paragraph. YOU ARE RIGHT, in a fallen world all sorts of bad things happen to good people, including Christians. Satan is still wreaking havoc on earth. This should be a no-brainer because as John wrote “We know that we are children of God, and that the whole world is under the control of the evil one” (1 John 5:19) The author of Hebrews also reminded the early church that at present we do not see everything subject to Christ (Heb 2:8b), and that Christ currently waits for his enemies to be made his footstool (Heb 10:13) Watch your evening news and it is strikingly obvious that God’s enemies are not yet under Jesus’ feet.
    Your statement about God “wanting Australia to stand up for Christian values”. God does not expect AUSTRALIA to stand up for Christian values BUT HIS CHURCH. Where does this idea come from? Not the Bible. How can a multicultural country like this full of atheists and so many other religions be expected to “stand up for Christian values”? This is the church’s job, not by standing outside parliament and protesting but by scattering around the community during the week in their individual vocational callings and being salt and light as you mentioned.
    The Roman Christians fought abortion by waiting under the bridges in the city where babies were commonly abandoned and they would adopt them and raise them. They didn’t organise rallies outside the Pretoreum. Christian values are demonstrated individually. When the nice young man in the blue uniform waives you down, you graciously accept the ticket. You don’t say “no officer I was NOT speeding, there MUST be something wrong with YOUR radar equipment”
    Exposing what is false, protects the wider body of Christ and the myriads of biblically illiterate and discernment challenged Christians, as well as being an antidote to the guilt poison that was excreted to those victims. I regret that you see this as simply “Christian semantics, jargons and who’s-right-who’s-wrong mentality” You have asked “Have we not been wrong about things in our lives before?” Yes we have, and some offences are definitely worth overlooking, but this was a grievous one. If we are to “fix our eyes and thoughts on Christ” as you exhorted us to do, it should extend beyond silent idealism and include contending “for the faith that was once for all entrusted to the saints.” (Jude 3) AS WELL AS getting our hands dirty be helping those in need right now!

  68. John from Brisvegas wrote: “…at present we do not see everything subject to Christ (Heb 2:8b), and that Christ currently waits for his enemies to be made his footstool (Heb 10:13) Watch your evening news and it is strikingly obvious that God’s enemies are not yet under Jesus’ feet.”
    Kaffein: I’d suggest you take a look at here (http://kaffein-nated.blogspot.com/2009/02/australian-abortion-laws-to-blame-for.html ). I never mentioned that every enemy has come under Jesus’ feet. Rather each day more and more enemies of Jesus will fall under his feet.
    John wrote: “Your statement about God “wanting Australia to stand up for Christian values”. God does not expect AUSTRALIA to stand up for Christian values BUT HIS CHURCH.”
    Kaffein: Totally agree. Again you have misinterpreted my comment. I said PERHAPS Danny’s dream… blah blah. Please read carefully.
    You wrote: “… and being salt and light as you mentioned.”
    Kaffein: Hence my comment on us Christian being SALT and LIGHT of the world.
    Greatly appreciate if you had read my comments in context.
    Thanks,
    Kaffein

  69. John from Brishotas..Great 4th paragraph
    ..leave the cringy crazy protesting to the loopy treehuggers.. (who have a lot more to answer for in this anyway.)
    Here is an idea..Why not instead use a position in the medias eye to tell the lost and broken somebody loves them no matter what they’ve done..
    heaven knows some people need to feel loved right about now..

  70. Good on you Mark for standing up against self-appointed prophets who pretend that statements made to Israel (before Christ – in the times of the Old Covenant) somehow apply to Australia. There is no one nation that is God’s special nation any more. Since Christ (the one who came to fulfil the law and the prophets),since the coming of the New Covenant that Jeremiah predicted and which happened in Christ – since all that, the people of God are made up of people from all lands and places. We just can not take the words of the Old Testament that relate to Israel and expect to apply them to Australia or any nation, today. That is misusing the Bible. It is ignoring Jesus. It is staying in law and forgetting about the fulness of God’s self-revelation (of grace) in Jesus.

  71. Let the love of God and the Lord Jesus soothe the sad, weary and downcast. May His Body, the Church play her intended role in that healing process. There has never been a more needed time for The Message of hope. Regards..

  72. Lets face it good and bad events originate from:
    1. Natural everyday and random chance events
    2. Because of something we do to ourselves or others
    3. Because the Devil did it
    4. Because God did it.
    Or a mixture of these. Probably most things occur due to 1 and 2. However there will always be crackpots who think it is mostly 3 or 4.
    Wanting to be honorable, and not ‘name and blame’ we has a christian’s don’t have a very good track record or process for healthily confronting eccentric views that are damaging to faith. We need to take out the rusty BS detectors from the shed and re-oil them rather than swallow every doctrine.
    Whilst allowing for diversity of opinions- there has to be a line somewhere between truth and aberration. A healthy and public analysis should be made on the ‘teachings’ of ministries such as Catch the Fire and Salt Shakers. The problem of course in critiquing one man ministries- is that things are often taken as an attack. Others feel that it is divisive and ‘airing dirty laundry’.
    But lets embrace openness and accountability- it sharpens and improves us all (if we are receptive)!

  73. Well said Mark.
    I agree with you that suffering is something experienced by the just and unjust; believer and unbeliever in our fallen world. Last week, as part of a series, I preached on Jesus’ letter to the Church at Smyrna. There we see that a church that received no criticism from the Lord also suffered badly. Surely such passages caution us against assuming causal links between sin and suffering. Such assumptions often reflect a simplistic desire to have everything neatly worked out and explained, rather than acknowledging that there are some things we don’t get answers for and simply must trust God in. Rather than trying to answer every question or throw condemnation at people, we do better to get on with finding ways to love people in the name of Jesus.
    David Devine

  74. thank you for a balance to the gloom and doom – 1 Chronicles 6: 1, the Lord said that He would dwell in thick darkness (doom and gloom)wouldn’t be great is all our preaching was from Grace and God kingdom on earth with Him demonstrating and confirming His Word with signs. Let keep praying, witnessing and declaring the poser of Gods Salvation and Grace – He SO LOVED the world (man) that He gave all He could to redeem (buy back) man for fellowship and as vessel to place Himself in – yes His Holy Spirit
    Blessings
    trevor d

  75. I would like, to the best of my ability, present a logical approach to this topic of judgment and some questions that I hope some readers will be able to shed light and help each of us grow in understanding as we approach the day of His coming. I also want to clarify that I am not in any way theologically trained and therefore some of my views may be “unscriptural”.
    For a start, let me make my own definition of the word judgment.
    Judgment – consequence of an action or decision by a 3rd party that brings sorrow, pain, loss, suffering, death to humanity. The 3rd party can be an individual, a group of individuals, and of course God.
    At this juncture, I would like to expand on & categorise different types of judgments that are common to human experience.
    Type 1 – Consequences of natural physical laws being violated or interacting e.g. jumping off a building will lead to death or severe injuries. I also categorise consequences of natural disasters like earthquakes, violent storms, bush fires under Type 1. For e.g. an earthquake is likely a result of more than one physical laws interacting.
    Type 2 – Consequences of a 3rd party’s unintentional actions or decisions e.g. a drunk driver knocking and hurting/killing someone.
    Type 3 – Consequences of a 3rd party intentional actions or decisions e.g. an evil dictator who imprisons, tortures & kills his political opponents.
    Type 4 – Consequences of personal choices or decisions e.g. being aids infected as a result of having sex outside of marriage with an infected person.
    Type 5 – Consequences of spiritual laws violated e.g. emotional traumas as a result of relationship breakdowns e.g. a divorce, a heated quarrel. (Note: due to my limited vocabulary, I took the liberty to use the words “spiritual laws”.)
    Type 6 – Others i.e. judgments in which the non-scientific WHY’s are not clearly understood e.g. a baby born deformed or handicapped.
    Type 7 – Consequences of God’s direct actions & judgment because of our sins, unrighteousness, injustice e.g. what He did to Sodom & Gomorrah.
    From this rather long list of judgments, we can see that somehow woven into God’s design and creation, is a cause & effect mechanism at work. What I am proposing here is that God had intentionally put in place His judgments (Types 1 to 6) that will trigger & become our experience when certain conditions are satisfied. It is as though He “switched off” and let His cause & effect mechanism does the job for Him. He gave us a free will to make choices and nature the freedom to demonstrate its power & fury but it comes with His cause & effect mechanism that will trigger His judgments when the conditions are met.
    Question:
    Is He being merciless, unloving, vengeful by having & using this cause & effect mechanism on humanity?
    From various bloggers’ commentaries that I read, it appears there is a position held by some that God is withholding all Type 7 judgments until the final judgment. Some observations to take note of.
    Jesus mentioned the destruction of Jerusalem before it happened.
    Jesus told His disciples in Matt 24 about the terrible natural calamities, wars, etc that will happen before His return.
    Questions:
    Was Jesus passing a Type 7 judgment over Jerusalem’s destruction or was He just describing an event soon to happen in about 70 years after His death?
    What is God’s intended purpose that such terrible judgments & calamities should happen before Christ returns? Why not great blessings, wealth & peace, great fanfare preceding His return?
    Coming to Danny’s statement. Let’s turn the clock back to 2008 after he had his dream. Suppose he told his dream to the Christian community and leaders at large and expressed his urgent call that Christians in Australia should organize days of prayer and fasting to pray and move God’s hand to prevent any major bush fires tragedies.
    Questions:
    Would the Christian community and leaders at large heed his call?
    Have our Christian community and leaders become complacent because “we get bush fires every year” and therefore there is nothing urgent nor special about 2009 that we should be overly concerned about?
    What if the Christian community & leaders at large had taken on the individual as well as collective responsibility to intercede against major bush fires before this terrible tragedy happened? Would God be moved by us and hold back the fury of nature?
    Discarding the noise in all the blogs (for or against Danny) and in as much as we “crucify” Danny for his insensitivity and callousness and perhaps rubbing salt into wounds, I want to say that I am as much to be blamed for the tragedy because I did not pray about bush fires at all before this tragedy and that God would hold back the bush fires from causing so much suffering.
    Never mind if my prayers would be answered. The point is, how many of us who took Danny to task did pray about the bush fires before this tragedy unfolded before our very eyes?
    Think about it. What natural calamities are likely to happen in Australia in the near or distant future that we are not currently praying against and interceding, individually & collectively?

  76. The problem with your argument steven is that you seem to assume that it is the numbers, effort and sincerity of believers interceding that could have averted the distaster. Perhaps if enough of us christians prayed- BAAL might wake up and see that something terrible is about to happen and perform a miracle.
    Not only that- are we to become a simply a group of believers who prays and intercedes to avoid a distaster- seems a bit convenient.
    And why does someone have to be to blame?
    Danny can make terrible predictions, if they occur….we didn’t pray hard enough and he is a prophet. If they do not occur then we must have prayed hard enough and he is still a prophet. It is win win for Danny if you buy in!
    The point here is that – life happens – and it is unwise to try to pin all life events down to a type 1-7 judgment event.
    Also it pays to be cautious of people who say ‘thus sayeth the Lord’ too much or claim too many miracles and signs an wonders. As if this validates their ministry! To me it often invalidates there ministry. There wouldn’t need to be so much talk if there was more substance.
    What protection is there for any of us if we get of track. We as a body of believers need to be able to ‘tell it like it is’ sometimes so that we all remain on the straight and narrow. Perhaps this could all be a tap on the shoulder for Danny. Not fight between pro/anti Danny people.

  77. Thank you for your helpful comments Mark. I just have one question. You mentioned that now is not the time of God’s judgement. However, my understanding from passages such as Romans 1:19-20 is that we do experience judgement from God currently (and this judgement has been experienced ever since sin entered the world), though God’s final judgement is yet to come. Could we say that suffering such as the Victorian bushfires is part of God’s judgement (though not necessarily for particular sins by particular people, but rather judgement upon the whole world as a consequence of sin generally)?

  78. Hi Peter Jeans
    You certainly raise some important points in your reply. I will respond accordingly.
    a. As christians we are encouraged to pray for all things, whether potentially good or bad.
    b. We do not DICTATE to God what He should or must do or not do according to what we pray. However, we can reason with and plead our case with Him. He decides ultimately what should or should not be done.
    c. The end result, whether He answers according to what we pray or otherwise is His sovereign decision, will & purpose. I am not being fatalistic here but to acknowledge GOD’s revealed character.
    d. I do not subscribe to the concept that the more the merrier i.e. God will only be swayed because 1000 prayed. However, I do think that when 1000 pray with passion and compassion, God can (not should) be moved. Ditto even if only 1 person prays in like manner.
    e. Whether, as a result of our prayers, the tragedies could have been avoided, does not in any way prove whether our prayers have been effective or otherwise and should not discourage us from praying if our prayers do not get answered the way we desire.
    f. Seriously, how God wants to answer our prayers is His perogative and I do not think it is in God’s agenda nor intention to prove Danny or for that matter anyone, whether he is right or wrong or whether he is a prophet that is always wrong or rarely right.

  79. Just wondering whether many of you have even read Ps. Danny’s press release or just the frenzy that has followed it. See Bill Muehlenberg where Ps. Mark gave a link:
    Bill Muehlenberg
    12.2.09 / 11am Thanks Ben
    For what it is worth, Pastor Danny never anywhere said the fires were the judgment or punishment of God. But my position – as fallible and tentative as it may be – is given in the above article, so it is apparent that Christians may see things somewhat differently here.
    Bill Muehlenberg, CultureWatch”

  80. Thank you Mark for this lovely explanation of the fires and a good discussion of the lack of wisdom and understanding about the Pastor’s comments on them. The church needs to reach out to people now with God’s love, compassion and mercy. I am so glad to have discovered your site through Australian Prayer Network. I will be back to visit it again. Once again, God bless you for providing a biblical and loving response to the people who have suffered and providing us with some ways to talk to people about the fires and the many questions people have at times like these. God bless

  81. Who is mourning and speaking out about the senseless deaths of the innocent children that will be slaughtered not only in Victoria but across the world? We are allowing Gods creation to be annilated in the name of choice and we can stand there and say that God would not be outraged over that. Our God is supposed to be a God of justice. Victoria was warned about passing this bill. Please go and watch this video on youtube of Gianna Jessen a abortion survivor who came and spoke the word of God in the Victorian Parliment on the eve of the bill being passed.



    Also to clarify Ps Danny sent out an email last year calling for repentence to prevent the dream he was shown. He did not just suddenly “remember” he dreamed it. He is NOT condemning or judging the people of Victoria who have suffered horrifically throughout these fires. He is calling for prayer and repentance. We all need Jesus’ mercy. Sin does bring death that is spoken about profusely in the New Testament. My heart breaks for the people who where killed tragically and the families left to mourn. In the midst of all this we cannot forget what we stand for. Read Ezekiel 22 about Gods wrath coming because they are guilty of the blood they have shed. It then speaks about the “princes” who are demons which leave widows and destruction in their path. This state has welcomed the death of innocent babies. There should be tears shed for them and the senseless loss of life through the fire. We need to speak the truth in love, yes we have a forgiving Saviour but how long will God stand by and watch his creation decimated? Colossians talks about the wrath of God coming. It does not say in this world or in judgement. The wrath of God does exist. Jesus carries the wrath for people who accept his forgiveness. There is all this talk about a loving God and that he is but have we forgotten the fear of God? This is a God who has the power to determine our eternity, it’s not all peaches and cream, we are saved if we believe THEN obey.
    My prayer is that Christians would unite and pray for the salvation of this country instead of passing judgement on each other. I think that it is horrible that a fellow pastor has denounced another like this.
    Each side of this argument has valid points, and we may never know for sure this side of eternity exactly what has gone on here. Unite and pray. The world is watching us.

  82. Thank you Mark for your response to Danny. I have been working as a Chaplain with Chaplaincy Australia this week up in the fire areas and there is a lot of pain and loss up there. People need to see the love of God in a very practical way at this time and not have to be faced with the sort of stupid comments that Danny has made. Thanks Mark and bless you mate.

  83. Hi John from BrisVegas!
    I agree with your statement: “Unity is not the same as uniformity and truth unites whereas error divides”. And I agree with an earlier’s person statement “Truth without love is brutality and love without truth is hypocrisy”.
    I think Ps Danny’s article was ill-timed, divisive (and damaging to the Church) and wrong. This should be the time when we as the Body of Christ – the Church – come out in force to show God’s love to all those who are suffering and hurting at the moment.
    I love the discussion in this blog but dislike the attacking ‘tone’ of some. I love Nicole’s passionate righteousness. We should and must stand up in situations when a wrong has been presented as right. We are the Salt and the Light of the earth and ambassadors of Christ. What we do and say are looked upon under a microscope by non-believers and Christians it seems as a whole are judged accordingly. Let us always speak in love and respect for each other, even if we may not agree. Also beware of false prophets. Be always discerning, test and never be a blind follower without questioning. So good on you folks for your discussion points. It’s good to have an open discussion here and know that what we say here will not be deleted from the blog if it doesn’t agree. Speak in love and action. Peace to you all and please help to be the feet and hands of Jesus during this time!

  84. SIMON, and BARRY I agree.
    Modern churches prefer to focus on blessing, leaving out judgement. The restraining power of the Holy Spirit is lifted at times, lifting His protection of the people. God is great, and turns no blind eye to sin.
    I encourage all to read the Word, and not take a preacher, or pastors opinion as anything more than that, and a pastor should encourage people to read the word. The Word is the Truth, man’s words are simple in comparison.

  85. Very well put Emma. Ps. Danny did put the word out and call for unified repentance to avert the disaster. Re: the John Howard prophecy that so many ridiculed; again, it was conditional on the body of Christ uniting together to pray and support the party promising the best deal for moral values. Look at the vast amount of immoral, destructive, anti-family laws since PM Rudd gained power. The church, in the main, promoted Rudd as a genuine Christian worthy of the Christian vote! Well, we are now accountable for the results of our voting! What WILL it take to get the church to rise up and unify in prayer and repentance? Can all you mockers tell me? God have mercy on Australia. Ryan Foley.

  86. The abortion bill has removed the legal uncertainty for some abortions. Like it or not, abortions were and are taking place everyday- and will continue to do so. It is unlikely that they will increase because prior to the bill they were so common and easily available already. So the passing of the bill in some ways has little relevance to many of the arguments put forward by CTF about stemming the rate of abortions. I think the political and publicity strategies show a lack of engagement in civil society and a limited understanding of how society and government really work. Top marks for trying but none for strategy.
    Our county’s laws, customs, arts and sciences etc reflect the society we live in. CTF and should stop trying to grandstand on political issues thinking that this will make a difference. Jesus didn’t come and start petitioning and undertaking political maneuvers to ‘adjust’ the Roman empire- he said his kingdom was not of this world. We should be focussing on our real mission- transforming society one soul at a time. If we were effective at this then abortion would be a non-issue, because few would want one. The Roman empire was transformed by a grassroots network movement under persecution. Millions were saved. This massive change was eventually used to create a legal state religion, which according to many christian commentators was a disaster in many ways.
    Does God make special deals with governments? Sure countries that have high standards of ethics, freedoms and human rights prosper due to sowing and reaping what they have sowed. Judao-christian values benefit individuals and society in the short and long term. This doesn’t mean that God is doing and undoing special deals with governments, states and countries over pieces of legislation that they pass. Just that building a country on sound principals is beneficial.
    Also abortion and killing are complicated issues. There are circumstances where both could be acceptable. For example is it justifiable to perform an abortion to save the life of the mother? What odds for the mothers survival are acceptable in making the decision- 90% chance of dying? 70%? Or is the babies life worth more than the mothers?
    Similarly is it justifiable to kill in self-defence or to defend others?
    Then there is the guilt. Who bears responsibility for unjustified abortions? The mother? Doctor? Hospital? Person who trained the surgeon in the procedure? Government for funding and legislation? Schools for not providing adequate sex education? TV stations for promoting low moral standards? Christians for not mobbing people at the abortion clinic? Do we attach a guilt percentage to each? It goes on and on and on. Society is interlinked in many complex ways – seizing on one piece of legislation and assuming it is the root of the issue is simplistic.
    The other problem I have with all this is that it is easy to wave a placard about all the things wrong in the world and who should be to blame, rather than work constructively to improve society. Unless you have the moral authority with THE PEOPLE, like Ghandi did. No ONE IS GOING TO LISTEN TO YOU.
    So how do we change society?
    1. Change the world one soul at a time.
    2. Live in the world but not be of the world- God will place us in positions where we can be decision makers of influence.
    3. Become a person with wide moral influence in society – like Ghandi.
    Everyone can do #1, #2 takes years and providence, #3 takes almost a lifetime and is out of reach for most of us.
    To finish some seem to be obsessed with whether God is in blessing (prosperity) or judgement mode- and how this comes about. What if He is taking a hands off approach? How can we really know for sure??? So why don’t we just ‘can it’ about the judgement and blessing and get on with helping others in need, without questioning circumstances!

  87. Just an observation I would like to mention:
    In the book of Acts alone there are no fewer than 8 Prophetic warnings about different events.
    Acts 11:27 Warning by prophets about World wide famine, to prepare for it.
    Acts: 20:23 Prophetic warning by many to Paul that chains and tribulation await him.
    Acts 20:29 Prophetic doctrinal warning, to particular church
    Acts 27:9 Prophetic warning by Paul of the soon destruction of ship and crew, unless they don’t sail
    Acts 21:5 Prophetic warning to Paul not to go to Jerusalem.
    Acts: Paul being warned in a dream not to go to Asia- went to Macedonia instead.
    It is clear from these passages that God still warns his people prophetically in this New Testament era.
    Though we had an extreme case in discussion here that needed to be and has been addressed, I think it is unwise to close the door altogether on God warning his people of a future event.
    When God does warn you of a future event hopefully you will handle it wisely.

  88. I have experienced God’s Incredible Grace in the middle of this week’s terrible tragedies. The largest bushfire was started only 6 km from my house in Kilmore when it was 46oC. On Saturday night 10pm fires were burning 20km each side of the station; and 94 km into the distance to Kinglake.
    I reached Kilmore at 6 pm as all traffic north went through the town. It was still 46oC and the wind was an unbelievable 90 km/h. ELVIS was over a neighbour’s property for 5 minutes and I thought the wind had turned and fires were coming in. There were two young men on the property at the back. When I reached the back door they ran away and my mobile was missing from the car. I couldn’t ring the police or anyone else for help. Everyone was out fighting fires. I put water on all the exposed timber and left. Nothing personal was in the house. If the fire reached my house it could have threatened the other 5,000 people living in Kilmore.
    Firefighters worked all night without a break and by 8 am the main fires were out. At 11 pm 7 tankers were set to Wandong to rescue people. Only one tanker and a farmer with 2 buckets protected Kilmore. So I gave him a hand to put out some spot fires. He had a 4WD and 2 horses. The firefighters came back and we went to bed. About 8am it was clear; and nearly all fires were out. Thank God no one was hurt on our side!
    Four CFA strike teams came up the road. They quickly took down trees with chain saws to go up the road and find all the tragedies you have witnessed. Ambulances and fire tankers and Utes with 4WD went up and down the road. Then the trees dried out and burned again. So we put small buckets of water on each tree till the fire went out. Then we cleared the road so families in cars could go towns like Clonbinane that suffered terrible losses.
    At 4pm I reached the first farm. Their very nice house and shed survived but every animal and tree was badly burned. I told them “How sorry I was for their loss”. I said “I was going to go to church today but sometimes faith needs to get its hands a little dirty. If Jesus was here I am sure he would have walked down that road today”.
    Please keep supporting and praying for people caught in this terrible tragedy. I would like to support the comments Mark and others have made in this Blog that we really need to get out and help people that are hurting. Jesus said “The Rain falls on Good and Evil alike” and all were certainly caught up in this set of fires. These things test people’s character. (I am not sure that the world really understands ideas about God’s Judgment). My hope is that seeing the church’s concern people will come to Christ like the ones I was privileged to meet on Sunday.
    Brian Giesner

  89. Hi Sam,
    I could not agree more with your statement here > When God does warn you of a future event hopefully you will handle it wisely. < God does warn us of future events today, BUT we need to handle what is revealed prayerfully as well as wisely and search our heart. Thank you Brian for your first hand report. My heart geos out to you and all those caught up in this tragic event. Thanking God for all those courageous firefighters and others who are doing their best to assist. My support and prayers are with those people caught in this terrible tragedy. Joining my prayers with your hope that when those affected by these tragic bushfires and others see the church's concern by showing God's love in action many will come to know Jesus Christ personally. Love never fails.

  90. As a professional forester who was involved in fighting large fires and coordinating fuel reduction burns in cooler months I have some practical comments to make, that do indeed have spiritual application.
    There are three main factors that drive fires: weather conditions, ignition source and fuel (type and amount). We cannot control weather and while ignition sources can be minimised we can’t really stop fires starting (unfortunately even arsonists will always be with us).
    The only factor that we really can influence is fuel. In the last couple of decades there has been a culture shift in the Australian bush with a substantial decrease in hazard reduction burning. This has occurred for a number of reasons that don’t need to be discussed here. The dangerous increase in fuel and poor urban planning (houses in the bush etc) have substantially contributed to these fires.
    Now if we don’t maintain a car and it causes an accident and kills people do we blame God? – no it was our responsibility to maintain the car. If we poorly design a building or are lax in maintaining it and it falls down and kills people do we blame God? No.
    This is the same principle that Jesus was getting at when referring to the Tower at Siloam that collapsed and killed people. He inferred that they were NOT worse sinners than anyone else.
    In the same way, if our land management practices, in this case especially regarding wide scale low intensity fuel reduction burning, maintenance of fire trials, and rural-urban planning, have become sloppy and poorly resourced and they contribute to large fires which cause many deaths – should we blame God? Of course not!
    In the professional forest and fire management fields there has been ongoing debate about the need to reintroduce broad scale, low-intensity fuel reduction burning to reduce the risk of devastating fires as well as the need for improved planning for the urban/bush interface. These events have been long predicted by professionals in these fields who have no claim to be prophets of God.
    Good article Mark, I hope some of these practical comments has added to the discussion.

  91. Dear Mark,
    Thanks very much for your inspiring comment. My Bishop in Brisbane pointed me to your blog.
    With every blessing in Christ,
    Revd Deacon Ed Bakker SSM
    Tradition Anglican Communion in New Zealand
    ( Amanda James ‘s father , we have met )

  92. Hi Mark
    It is NOT right to blame God or classify the Bush Fires as God’s Judgement when it is owing to the carelessness of men & their own doings.
    These Bush Fires can only remind us that Hell fire is real & going to be worst than these Bush Fires.
    Here we are reminded again of Ground Zero.
    Our God is a Merciful God.

  93. Let me say one thing, In Ps Dannys article hes not actually saying that God caused peoples homes to burn down and die, his article states that the protection of God has been removed thus allowing the devil to come in free range, because of laws placed on this state. I see that too many people dont know how to interpret properly.

  94. Miriam hi,
    If you get Danny’s original post made in October, he associates the Wrath of God with the passing of the laws. I quote” My wrath is about to be released upon Australia, particularly Victoria”.
    He has made the statement and needs to be held accountable, it appears he is not responding to the leadership of the wider christian community, with many leaders sending letters and e-mails with no response.

  95. Hi Sam,
    I could not agree more with your statement here > When God does warn you of a future event hopefully you will handle it wisely. < God does warn us of future events today, BUT we need to handle what is revealed prayerfully as well as wisely and search our heart. Thank you Brian for your first hand report. My heart goes out to you and all those caught up in this tragic event. Thanking God for all those courageous firefighters and others who are doing their best to assist. My support and prayers are with those people caught in this terrible tragedy. Joining my prayers with your hope that when those affected by these tragic bushfires and others see the church's concern by showing God's love in action many will come to know Jesus Christ personally in a real way. Love never fails. Thanking God for Mark Conner's openly honest and compassionately wise leadership.

  96. Its important to note what I’m not saying:
    I’m not saying that God is punishing or bringing judgement through these fires. Judgement is reserved until Judgement day. Until then, he is in the business of providing saving grace to all (righteous and wicked), more so to his children.
    I’m not saying that God removes the protective hedges around our nation – we do that ourselves.
    I’m not saying that Ps Mark Conner has represented God correctly – his ‘compassionate’ stance is vindictive/proud against his ‘mental model’ (a caricature) of Ps Danny Nalliah.
    I’m not saying that Ps Danny Nalliah has represented God correctly – God has not removed the protective hedges, we Christians have. There is no part to blame the non-christians here. We christians are simply seeing the outworking of spiritual laws set in place by God – he’s set them in place and hasn’t touched them since.
    How have we removed protective hedges? Lack of prayer, spiritual warfare, intercession, unity, not countering/resisting evil words and practices, spiritual pride, lethargy etc.
    What I’m saying is this:
    I’m paraphrasing here, but Ps Mark Conner is right in drawing the conclusion that when ‘time is up’, ‘time is up’. It does always mean God’s ‘judgement’, but it could also mean Satan’s evil plan has succeeded.
    God’s protection still extends to this world which is in rebellion since Adam sinned. He still looks out for his people tenderly and affectionately and saves them from all harm.
    Being all love and compassionate, he does not like it when other humans or the evil demons create disaster on earth. But God protects those whose lives are covered by the Blood – in life and in death.
    God’s protection (which extends even to sinful non-believers) is proportionate to the unity and spiritual preparedness among his people. His lack of protection has got little to do with the sin and sinners out there, but everything to do with how Christians live.
    Kind regards

  97. Hi Paul,
    Yes, I’ve noted what you are NOT saying. Your comment here > I’m not saying that Ps Mark Conner has represented God correctly – his ‘compassionate’ stance is vindictive/proud against his ‘mental model’ (a caricature) of Ps Danny Nalliah. < Wo are you to judge saying Pastor Mark Conner has not repesented God correctly or that he is vidictive/proud!? Do you know him or his heart personally? Danny didn't need anyone's help with the caricature of himself. He did that himself, with self-prommotion, by foolishly releasing his insensitive article to the media... That in itself is religious pride. It takes a humble man to submit to wise godly counsel and a courageous man to admit when one is wrong. Mark's compassionate thought process for how something works in the real world is in tune with God's heart, based on His Word and his 'mental model' is based on imitating Jesus. Nothing wrong with his compassionate 'mental model' for even Jesus showed compassion for people, apart from the 'religious' Pharisaic leaders of his day, who he dennounced. His representation of the surrounding world, relationship between its various parts & intuitive image about consequences of our acts is well balanced & real. Meaning of vindictive - disposed to seek revenge or intended for revenge; "more vindictive than jealous love" Shakespeare; "punishments...essentially vindictive in their nature"- M.R.Cohen vindictive - showing malicious ill will and a desire to hurt; motivated by spite; "a despiteful fiend"; "a truly spiteful child"; "a vindictive man will look for occasions for resentment" None of the meaning of vidictive above fits Mark. His heart is in the right place. In the end God will judge each man's heart righteously for He IS a Righteous Judge. Have a nice day. Shalom in Jashua HaMashiach

  98. Hi Paul,
    Can you explain what you mean by “But God protects those whose lives are covered by the Blood – in life and in death.God’s protection (which extends even to sinful non-believers) is proportionate to the unity and spiritual preparedness among his people. His lack of protection has got little to do with the sin and sinners out there, but everything to do with how Christians live.”
    Are you saying that martyred Christians didn’t live right? Do you recall Australian family working in slums of India and father and two sons who had their caravan set alight – all dying in the caravan? The wife and daughter returned to India and continued their work. This was reported at very senior levels of government impacting people and showing the love of Christ.
    Suggesting “His lack of protection has got little to do with the sin and sinners out there, but everything to do with how Christians live” seems a little simplistic. God never promised it would be easy – death is part of the plan and sometimes I think God allows it to fulfill a greater purpose.

  99. I thought this thread would have died down by now, but it’s still going!
    PAUL,
    You said that God “looks out for his people tenderly and affectionately and saves them FROM ALL HARM” (emphasis mine) I’m not sure how much thought you gave to this blanket statement, but what that would mean is that Christians will never be involved in car accidents, get paper cuts, catch the flu or in the case of North Qld floods, their house will just stay dry!
    Here’s a reality check. The most Christian continent on earth, Africa, is also the hungriest, notwithstanding other problems such as civil unrest, genocides etc. And the most devout Muslim region on earth, the Arabian Sea, is one of the most prosperous on earth (I have borrowed the comparisons from another source). From what I know, African Christians are far more prayerful than Western Christians (by sheer virtue of their deep needs). If prayer was the protection barometer, Africa should be the most divinely protected continent on earth.
    More importantly, this is not the biblical worldview of life for the faithful. To begin with, “everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted” (2 Tim 3:12). That means that as soon as you decide to want to live a godly life you almost paint an invisible target on your chest. Persecution has many forms of course and is not always physical.
    The correct biblical position is that we will endure affliction but God has the last say. Paul’s words in the above quoted passage were preceded with a testimonial account. “what kinds of things happened to me in Antioch, Iconium and Lystra, the persecutions I endured. Yet the Lord rescued me from all of them” (v.11) He still suffered, but the end result was in his favour. You can be pounded in the ring, but you don’t become permanently incapacitated. We may lose the battle but not the war. That’s why Jesus said about his church that “the gates of hell will not prevail against it”. The word ‘prevail’ in his statement presupposes that hell will try but will not win at the end.
    Jesus continued a thread that already existed in the Old Testament. Read carefully Isaiah’s famous words (43:2) “WHEN you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and WHEN you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. WHEN you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.” Not IF but WHEN. This is a very matter-of-factly statement. We’ll go through all these things but they will not overpower us.
    And that is exactly how Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego believed about themselves when push came to shove. “O Nebuchadnezzar ……If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to save us from it, and he will rescue us from your hand, O king. BUT EVEN IF HE DOES NOT……we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up.” (Dan 3:17-18) They accepted the possibility that God may not have intervened and this was neither lack of faith nor negative confession. It was their ‘theological’ understanding of how God works.
    There is a subtle (but important) difference between God protecting us and insulating us FROM problems, than God helping us power on IN SPITE of life’s problems.
    Your belief that God’s protection to sinful non-believers ‘is proportionate to the unity and spiritual preparedness among his people’ is even more troublesome but I think we’ve beaten this to death on the preceding blog threads.
    May I live you with this. While personal prayer certainly helps (among other things) raise our level of vigilance and alertness to the wiles of the devil, any ‘protection entitlements’ we have ULTIMATELY as God’s children, is because of Jesus’s prayer not ours. In Jesus’ last recorded prayer (other than what he cried out on the cross) was the request to the Father to “protect them from the evil one”. From memory all the apostles but one, died as martyrs. Church history and beyond show that this ‘protection’ does not extend to everything. It is comforting to know nonetheless, that protection from the evil one guarantees that ultimately God will fulfil his preordained purposes through us individually and collectively despite the evil one’s fierce opposition. God will win at the end!

  100. At this time in Australia, particularly in Victoria, there is great sadness due to the loss of life, family, and property. It seems even further sadness is now occurring to see Christians belittling and diminishing there own because they were bold enough to share what God had shown them. While I can understand we may struggle to comprehend statements on judgement amongst such suffering, even for fellow saints, we should not simply seek to pull each other down. One may even query the timing of reminding us of such message from last year, however perhaps this is also from God…when else would we hear. Let us observe the fruit of their live before casting judgment.
    As has already being pointed out God does reveal the future through His prophets, and this has never changed. Now under the grace of Christ, His Spirit witnesses His testimony amongst many. In Christ came grace and truth, both should abound. I can hear the pastoral heart saying surely not as it grieves for those grieving, however the prophet’s heart also says “God said”. Such warnings were often given in the Bible as a change to repent despite the prevailing wickedness….truly God’s love.
    The message of judgement, or the lifting of God’s hand, is one that was made to saints and all who would hear last year….a chance to act. A number of people across Australia have been trying to communicate this message from God, even going back two years or more, to the parliamentary leaders…to little avail. Abortion laws were passed, freedom to share the gospel hit, fatherless and motherless generations encouraged…and the innocent plundered. And often the governments that did such things voted back in. God will defend the innocent. Such actions could also be opening the door to the enemy. God’s mercy does triumph over justice, and grace abounds through Christ the intercessor…even to the children now (including those in the womb).
    A sobering reminder of the story about Abraham and Lot is that even while God said even if there were a few righteous in Sodom and Gomorrah it could be saved, the towns still perished in fire from heaven. Even though great prophets and saints of old, including righteous kings, in the times of the last kings of Judah and Israel/Samaria – they fell. In God’s eyes His restoration did come or is coming, even if it was not for a season, and mainly because of who He is, and maybe also because of the cries of the righteous, innocent, orphan, and widow. It is also good to remember that only He truly knows the heart of man, and determines the History.
    In the New Testament, including Acts, we again see prophetic warnings, and we even see kings receiving now judgement. In other parts we read of the last day judgement, but also of God’s witnesses who call down (see Revelations) judgement on the earth before that day. All the while we continue to see Christ’s call to reach out in love and pray for all, knowing He is the forgiver of sins and only He is the Judge. Knowing that now is the judgement of this world (John 12), and yet God has such a great plan of redemption of heaven’s reward, and a new earth and heaven. As it is written..’the acceptable year of the Lord, and the day of vengeance of our God’.
    Thank God Christians are reaching out now to reveal the love of Christ to those who have lost so much in the Victorian bush fires. May His message of hope and eternal life prevail. Thank God for the watchmen who continue to declare what they see despite the response. Most of all thank our Father in heaven and our Lord Jesus Christ that He has paid the price for our sins, and our Saviour is seated at the right hand of God interceding for all, including the lost. Thank God too for the many miracles of survival. This could have been so much worse, and it seems clear that grace did abound. Now may this sadness overtime give way to restoration and hope through Christ’s love, and also lead to repentance.

  101. Brian,
    If you care to understand what really motivated us to be so vocal about this issue, I encourage you to take the time to read the blog thread from beginning to end. It is pointless repeating what has been articulated by many of us thus far. It’s like flogging a dead horse. I doubt anyone on this blog is passionate about monotony.
    But here’s some food for thought:
    You said “Let us observe the fruit of their live [sic] before casting judgment.” So what you mean is “nice guys who say stupid things should be left alone”. If I’m a nice guy who does ‘good work for the kingdom’ I am somehow licensed to make reckless public statements and I have some sort of ‘diplomatic immunity’ that exempts me from public scrutiny and accountability.
    No Brian, TRUTH MATTERS, people have died for it!

  102. Brian,
    If you care to understand what really motivated us to be so vocal about this issue, I encourage you to take the time to read the blog thread from beginning to end. It is pointless repeating what has been articulated by many of us thus far. It’s like flogging a dead horse. I doubt anyone on this blog is passionate about monotony.
    But here’s some food for thought:
    You said “Let us observe the fruit of their live [sic] before casting judgment.” So what you mean is “nice guys who say stupid things should be left alone”. If I’m a nice guy who does ‘good work for the kingdom’ I am somehow licensed to make reckless public statements and I have some sort of ‘diplomatic immunity’ that exempts me from public scrutiny and accountability.
    No Brian, TRUTH MATTERS, people have died for it!

  103. Hi Mark.
    Thanks for saying what has been on my heart. As a pastor of another church in Melbourne I only believe that God is administering His love and grace in a time of crisis. I can only hope and pray that Dany Nahlia will know the God I know and His unconditional love that is endless.

  104. The bushfires that have destroyed so much and taken many lives have deeply disturbed us, and rightly so. When a man then says that he has had a message from God that links this event to the decision to legalise abortion there is an outcry from believers and non-believers alike. On the face of it, perhaps we should not be surprised that those who have no present knowledge of God reject such a vision. More surprising is the reaction of many Christians to such a statement. Those who reject such a statement, are they doing so from a scriptural positon? Are they saying categorically that there is no relationship between the moral and ethical conditon of a state and its overall well-being? Throughout all the scriptures there are many, many times that the well-being of a nation or people group is linked to its response to God’s laws. Has that now changed? the cry often goes up is that such a carry on was the ‘Old Testament’ God not the new improved one of the ‘New Testament’. Yet some of the most terrifying statements are made in the New Testament – the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 ad and 135 ad was prophesied by Jesus in the new testament and Jesus clearly links that event to a nations’ behaviour. The 7 letters to the Churches clearly reveal Jesus speaking of judgement. Herod was killed by divine intervention for taking glory upon himself. Ananias and partner were struck down unceremoniously. Paul warns that it is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of a the Living God and warns us tha God will not be mocked.
    I believe in a loving God whose heart is to save. Yet the the truth remains that we are actually saved from HIM. The wrath to come is a grim reality. It is is His anger against sin that will be revealed. Through His Son Jesus Christ we can all find refuge in the day of trouble. But let us be very clear it is not the devil we are saved from but from Him alone. It is not a comfortable thought but sin leads to death. Which of us is innocent of sin? I believe that every moment of every day is an act of grace that operates to suspend what I truly deserve. God alone knows when and how this grace is to be administered.
    Liberal Christianity it seems has invented their own diety who is much ‘nicer’ than the God truly revealed in the scriptures. It is His goodness that leads us to repentance. When challenged by his disciples about the eighteen killed by the tower falling at Siloam Jesus replied that these men were no more sinful but all should repent. Whatever ones interpretation of these events in Australia they should cause all of us to consider our lives, the way we live and whether we truly love God with all our hearts and minds and strength.

  105. Round and round in circles we go!!!
    Peter, if you read the whole blog thread on this topic (there is also a Part 2 on the Home page) you will see that a lot of what you raised has been addressed in excruciating detail.

  106. Mark, I nearly choked when I saw Danny on TV making his statement and felt like doing un-christian things (and then surpressed the feeling).
    The god that Danny is talking about isn’t the one I know… maybe Danny hasn’t quite managed to get Islam out of his system.
    I figure that on a daily basis, every one of us christian and non-christian alike receive the grace and love of God.
    For goodness sake, the fact that the sun rose today, tells us that God is not being slow in his promise, but that it’s another day he gives for people who don’t yet know him to discover that He loves them with an undying love.
    Thanks for voicing your thoughts. Pity the press don’t do their job and get some other perspectives on Danny’s thoughts before going to print.
    Cheers. John

  107. I think the fires are a terrible thing to happen and they were the work of some wierd person who would start it without any concern for anyone at all. It is just too hard to even imagine what these people are going through.
    BUT, I have a major concern.
    Pastor Danny is your brother in Christ and I understand what you are saying, my concern would be that you would mention his name on your blog. Where is the wisdom in that?
    It is embarassing that one brother would name another brother on a blog, that is just as embarrassing to the Christian church.
    I am not saying that Pastor Danny is correct or not correct. I was not privy to that dream, were you?
    And where do you get he is a self-appointed prophet? How do you or anyone decide if someone is self-appointed or God-appointed. There were many prophets in the bible who were not received well with their warnings etc. Were they self appointed too?
    Most of your blogs are good but I am disappointed with you naming the person. As a man of God and an inspiration to so many, it does not seem appropriate for you to do this. I am sure it was an oversight on your part.

  108. Jeepers,
    I did read the blog and posts.
    I think Mark didn’t have to mention who it was or criticize the man.
    Who is this Mark to call someone – loose cannon
    self appointed prophet or even that Danny is embarrassing?
    For those who didnt know it was Danny, well thanks to Mark they now know. I heard it was someone but i didn’t know who it was that said it. Now I know. We should be protective of our “family” in the church.
    For your info, who is Mark to say whether someone has heard from God or not? Unless he has the only hot line to Heaven and God only speaks to him alone, then he has no authority to say whether this Danny has heard from God.

  109. Hi Jodie,
    Where have you been? Danny himself released the news to the media worldwide!!! He is very well known for seeking publicity and blowing his own trumpet. Even Peter Costello was appalled by Danny’s incensitive actions! Yes, God is a righteous judge and ONLY He can judge a man’s heart motives better than we can. However, God has given us His Holy Spirit to show us what is true. Anyone who has God’s Holy Spirit leading them can discern the truth for themselves! Now is not the time to spout God’s judgement upon people, as Danny has publicly prophesied. Now is the time to show compassion with God’s love in action to win people to Jesus. Think about it.

  110. If you would have actually read his website, his name is spelt Danny Nalliah,
    I think its very unwise to go and call some1 a false prophet by public humiliation, is that called christian?
    Its very unwise to say that of some1 God has annointed to serve him and stand up for him.

  111. Miriam, yes, it is a very Christian thing to ‘weigh carefully’ all public prophecy. Have you read 1 Corinthians 14:29-32 and 1 Thess.5:19-22 lately?
    Danny has shared his ‘prophetic word’ with the entire nation by going to the media with it. Are you suggesting that he is beyond accountability … and that no one should test his word?
    Of course, once someone says “God told me …” it’s a bit hard to argue with God isn’t it.

  112. How do you know he has no acountability? did he tell you that yourself??? how do you know if he has spoken to many leaders? how do u know if he has people who have confirmed the word? you don’t so thereforre no one has the right to judge him!
    Everyone has tested his word, but i bet you no one has spent time praying in the spirit about it!
    I haven’t heard of anyone calling a prayer meeting to pray for rain lately? have you? i haven’t heard anyone calling to have a prayer meeting to pray for Ps Danny? you haven’t either? hmmmm….
    What i do know is that he had a prayer meeting last week to pray and repent on behalf of Australia….
    why is every1 so complacent?
    what happened at the interfaith prayer meeting the other day, the first prayer was to invite ancesteral spirits to come and protect Australia…… so why is everyone arguing and not doing anything about the situation.. praying, fasting, waiting on the Lord?

  113. Dear Pastor Mark Conner,
    You are a great motivational speaker, have unique body language and you are an exceptionally talented pianist.
    I realise Pentecostals can be loud at times, but from your blog people theough your comments one can easily detect you are expressing a subtle undertone of your utter distain towards Pentecostals.
    I am not Pentecostal, nor a member of Catch the Fire. I have visited Revival meetings and witness Ps. Danny’s sincere love for Australia and Australians. I’ve witnessed him he cried out in tears on his knees, begging God for mercy over our nation during the time of the abortion legislation, and on various numerous other occasions. I have witnessed the power of the Holy Ghost healing the sick, freeing the oppressed and restoring marriages and healing people from emotional problems.
    If it weren’t for Pastor Danny it would have been illegal to share the gospel with people in public, but he alone stood up fought for the future of our country.
    Where were you at that time, or during the time of the abortion bill?
    Were you doing nothing in the background, because you don’t care, or because it doesn’t affect your ‘church / synagogue?’
    If not, then why don’t you tell everyone what you did do to oppose the legalisation of abortion?
    Why don’t you tell all the readers on your blog, what you have done to prevent abortion? If people saw pictures of, and realised the evil graphic wanton violence involved in abortion, they would be sickened, grieved and recognize the urgent call for repentance.
    http://www.abortionno.org/Resources/pictures.html
    A man of your position must know, so please inform us of your stand against it, and what the outcome was. I didn’t see you outside parliament house pleading Gods mercy, or taking a stand against murder of innocent babies.
    So what did you do in the background?
    Where your treasure is there your heart is also. To fear God is to hate evil. Not condone it, so did contend for the faith, or just turn a blind eye and condone it?
    Why do you try and pacify your congregations by telling them it’s a season of favour. The simple may believe your words, but the wise and prudent (who know the scriptures) observe the signs and times. People who are mature Christians, possessing the ability to discern good from evil. (Heb 5:13,14)
    Did you even tell your congregations to take a stand and contend for the faith, what is right in God’s eyes, and according to His word? Or did you turn a blind eye and disregard such vital political matters, just as long as you get what you need for your church, stuff Australia, and it’s future generations?
    So you are in no position to Danny down, or insinuate that he is a false prophet. He is a sincere God fearing, people loving, humble gentleman. Nobody is perfect, except Jesus Christ.
    You said:
    Avoid throwing judgment and GUILT on people in their time of need.
    GUILT is a result of quenched conviction, which is an indication of condemnation.
    Condemnation is a result of not walking in the spirit, according to Romans 8:1 KJV (& in the original Greek translation).
    And the condemnation would be felt by the believers who didn’t respond to the plea of 2 Chronicles 7:13-14, as this passage refers to God’s people repenting, not the unbelievers.
    Do you feel guilty?
    Ps. Mark you wrote:
    Final rewards and punishments are not given out in this life.
    Danny didn’t say the fire was a final punishment. So this makes your statement incoherent.
    According to the bible, rewards and punishments ARE given in this lifetime, as well as final judgments and results of our choices. Read Deuteronomy 28. 1 John 5:7-10 proves that your statement was unbiblical and incorrect, contradicting the word of God. Such claims and teachings are known as Heresies. (See Galatians 5 on the consequences of any person who practises false teaching, also known as heresy.)
    1 John 5:7-10
    7 For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. 8 And there are three that bear witness in earth, the Spirit, and the water, and the blood: and these three agree in one. 9 If we receive the witness of men, the WITNESS OF GOD IS GREATER: for this is the witness of God which he hath testified of his Son. 10 He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself: he that believeth not God hath made him a liar; because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son.
    Conradicting the word of god, is contradicting Jesus Christ, and denying him.
    If you think that 1 John 5:9 doesn’t apply in the context to your statement, then consider John 1:1, and Revelation 19:13
    Revelation 19:13 “And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God.” (Referring to Jesus)
    If you still don’t understand the connection, maybe ask your dad he will explain it to you. (It is a shame how the apples sometimes fall far from the tree)
    And don’t misunderstand this and say, oh but the Old Testament (Deut 28) doesn’t apply to us anymore…
    If the NT doesn’t apply, then the 10 commandments don’t either. Nor does Psalm 23, 91, 121. (Sarcasm intended) Nor do all the blessings, or creation on that matter. So the truth is the NT is a revelation of the OT, and they BOTH sitll apply to us as believers.
    FACT:
    God didn’t destroy the whole nation, or the entire state of VIC. He possibly removed his hand of protection, allowing Satan to DESTROY. Possibly God’s trying to warn people of his disapproval and grief over the decriminalisation of abortion, and to awaken the sleeping dogs (pastors), and so that the church may take God seriously again.
    Regarding Prayerlessness: (Brackets are the interpretation/meaning)
    Isaiah 56:10-12
    10 His watchmen (Pastors & Intercessors) are blind: they are all ignorant, they are all dumb dogs, they cannot bark (discern or foresee danger); sleeping, lying down, loving to slumber (Luke warm, carnal, apathetic). 11 Yea, they are greedy dogs which can never have enough, and they are shepherds (Pastors) that cannot understand: they all look to their own way, every one for his gain, from his quarter (Lets get all we need for our church and who gives a whip about the death of innocent babies, or Australia’s future, as long as we have got what we need for the moment). 12 Come ye, say they, I will fetch wine (lets have fun activities and musical performances, entertaining the body of Christ), and we will fill ourselves with strong drink (disregard the full gospel, selective obedience); and to morrow shall be as this day, and much more abundant. (Assuming all will be well, but Jesus will return like a thief in the night)
    You Said:
    Is God judging our State of Victoria? God told Abraham that he would even spare Sodom and Gomorrah if their but a few righteous people in the city.
    FACT: God totally destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah he didn’t totally destroy VIC. So don’t confuse the matter. It may seem like you are trying to make Ps. Danny look like he implied there were no righteous people in VIC, which he DID NOT. Did you personally consult him on the matter before belittlling him and implying he’s a false prophet? You don’t even know him personally. Besides, be careful what you say about prophets, because if he is appointed by God as a prophet, you may be in grave danger and will be held accountable for it. (see Hosea 4) Especially if you influence multitudes to believe your opinion.
    You said:
    This is not the day of God’s judgment.
    Inferring that Pastor Danny said that, when Danny didn’t say this was the day of God’s judgment.
    You Said:
    Like Job, we have to learn to accept both good and trouble from God, then trust in his providence (Job 2:9-10).
    FACT: God withdrew his hand of protection from Job, when Satan challenged God that Job would turn against God. So Satan was granted that right to attack, rob kill and destroy from Job. In Job’s case it was for a test, not a punishment. Trouble does not come from God; at certain times God allows it. Jesus came to give life and more abundantly, the devil comes to rob, kill and destroy. So don’t confuse the devils evil works, as acts of God. Re-study Job the entire book in context, before you make blatantly outrageous claims, especially since you are in a position of significant influence over many people.
    God cannot do evil, even his judgments are good, disagree than (check the bible thoroughly for yourself) One example Psalm 119:39 Turn away my reproach which I fear: for thy judgments are good.
    Maybe you need to apply 2 Timothy 2:15, lest you be ashamed by your lack of knowledge of God’s word. In the New Testament approval for ministry or credentials comes from the Holy Spirit, not from man, credentials from a bible college. Yet unfortunately nowadays men have re-arrange God’s divine plan for ordination. (See 1 Timothy, 2 Timothy)
    2 Timothy 2:15
    Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
    Study the word of God, not the doctrines of men, or theological and man-made structures that are deemed necessary for the government to approve Bible college as an Austudy funded course, or what ever…
    FACT:
    Even though we are in the Dispensation of Grace, in the New Testament, The bible clearly says believers can still abuse it, and fail the grace of God.
    Heb 12:15 “Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled;”
    You Said:
    We are in a season of favor?
    The world is in a financial crisis, and you say we are in a season of favor? Drought and bushfires, abortion legalised, unemployment skyrocketing, fear and loss of security to families regarding their futures.
    Read Amos. Just because a church is growing, and prospering financially (church likened to the kingdom mentioned in Amos) it does NOT mean all is well, and God is pleased. That’s why God sent his prophet to warn the people… you should check Amos out again, we can never stop learning.
    As someone earlier pointed out…
    In Danny’s post he indicates the removal of Gods protection particularly over the state of Victoria. I think a true prophetic voice warns Gods people of coming events before they happen, such as in the book of Acts 11:27 When a prophet warned of a coming famine over the whole world.
    ADVISE for ALL CHRISTIANS:
    If you take Christianity seriously, and want to be sure of your salvation and really know Jesus intimately, it is absolutely vital that you are being taught the full truth of the bible, so whenever your taught a message from your local pastor please, consider Acts 17:11
    “These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, to see or confirm whether those things were so.”
    The simple believe every word, but the prudent look well into his way.
    Narrow is the way that leads to life, and few there are that find it.
    So please be careful what who you believe, and allow to infulence or persuade your beliefs. Our guide must be in line with the bible. Not man’s opinions. The Holy Spirit will never contradict the word of God. For it is better to trust in God than to put confidence in man, and in the end times many shall fall away from the faith, and be deceived.
    Col 2:4,5-8
    4 And this I say, lest any man should beguile you with enticing words. 6 As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in him: 7 Rooted and built up in him, and established in the faith, as ye have been taught (taught by the word of God), abounding therein with thanksgiving. 8 Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.
    God’s will be done and His Kingdom come, for Jesus glory!
    May God’s grace and mercy be upon you Ps. Mark

  114. LAST BLOG – WITH CORRECT SPELLING – MY APOLOGIES, TIME RESTRAINS!
    Dear Pastor Mark Conner,
    You are a great motivational speaker, have unique body language and you are an exceptionally talented pianist.
    I realise Pentecostals can be loud at times, but from your blog people though your comments one can easily detect you are expressing a subtle undertone of your utter distain towards Pentecostals.
    I am not Pentecostal, nor a member of Catch the Fire. I have visited Revival meetings and witness Ps. Danny’s sincere love for Australia and Australians. I’ve witnessed him he cried out in tears on his knees, begging God for mercy over our nation during the time of the abortion legislation, and on various numerous other occasions. I have witnessed the power of the Holy Ghost healing the sick, freeing the oppressed and restoring marriages and healing people from emotional problems.
    If it weren’t for Pastor Danny it would have been illegal to share the gospel with people in public, but he alone stood up fought for the future of our country.
    Where were you at that time, or during the time of the abortion bill?
    Were you doing nothing in the background, because you don’t care, or because it doesn’t affect your ‘church / synagogue?’
    If not, then why don’t you tell everyone what you did do to oppose the legalisation of abortion?
    Why don’t you tell all the readers on your bog, what you have done to prevent abortion? If people saw pictures of, and realised the evil graphic wanton violence involved in abortion, they would be sickened, grieved and recognize the urgent call for repentance.
    http://www.abortionno.org/Resources/pictures.html
    A man of your position must know, so please inform us of your stand against it, and what the outcome was. I didn’t see you outside parliament house pleading Gods mercy, or taking a stand against murder of innocent babies.
    So what did you do in the background?
    Where your treasure is there your heart is also. To fear God is to hate evil. Not condone it, so did contend for the faith, or just turn a blind eye and condone it?
    Why do you try and pacify your congregations by telling them it’s a season of favour. The simple may believe your words, but the wise and prudent (who know the scriptures) observe the signs and times. People who are mature Christians, possessing the ability to discern good from evil. (Heb 5:13,14)
    Did you even tell your congregations to take a stand and contend for the faith, what is right in God’s eyes, and according to His word? Or did you turn a blind eye and disregard such vital political matters, just as long as you get what you need for your church, stuff Australia, and it’s future generations?
    So you are in no position to Danny down, or insinuate that he is a false prophet. He is a sincere God fearing, people loving, humble gentleman. Nobody is perfect, except Jesus Christ.
    You said:
    Avoid throwing judgment and GUILT on people in their time of need.
    GUILT is a result of quenched conviction, which is an indication of condemnation.
    Condemnation is a result of not walking in the spirit, according to Romans 8:1 KJV (& in the original Greek translation).
    And the condemnation would be felt by the believers who didn’t respond to the plea of 2 Chronicles 7:13-14, as this passage refers to God’s people repenting, not the unbelievers.
    Do you feel guilty?
    Ps. Mark you wrote:
    Final rewards and punishments are not given out in this life.
    Danny didn’t say the fire was a final punishment. So this makes your statement incoherent.
    According to the bible, rewards and punishments ARE given in this lifetime, as well as final judgments and results of our choices. Read Deuteronomy 28. 1 John 5:7-10 proves that your statement was unbiblical and incorrect, contradicting the word of God. Such claims and teachings are known as Heresies. (See Galatians 5 on the consequences of any person who practises false teaching, also known as heresy.)
    1 John 5:7-10
    7 For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. 8 And there are three that bear witness in earth, the Spirit, and the water, and the blood: and these three agree in one. 9 If we receive the witness of men, the WITNESS OF GOD IS GREATER: for this is the witness of God which he hath testified of his Son. 10 He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself: he that believeth not God hath made him a liar; because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son.
    Contradicting the word of god, is contradicting Jesus Christ, and denying him.
    If you think that 1 John 5:9 doesn’t apply in the context to your statement, then consider John 1:1, and Revelation 19:13
    Revelation 19:13 “And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God.” (Referring to Jesus)
    If you still don’t understand the connection, maybe ask your dad he will explain it to you. (It is a shame how the apples sometimes fall far from the tree)
    And don’t misunderstand this and say, oh but the Old Testament (Deut 28) doesn’t apply to us anymore…
    If the OT doesn’t apply, then the 10 commandments don’t either. Nor does Psalm 23, 91, 121. (Sarcasm intended) Nor do all the blessings, or creation on that matter. So the truth is the NT is a revelation of the OT, and they BOTH still apply to us as believers.
    FACT:
    God didn’t destroy the whole nation, or the entire state of VIC. He possibly removed his hand of protection, allowing Satan to DESTROY. Possibly God’s trying to warn people of his disapproval and grief over the decriminalisation of abortion, and to awaken the sleeping dogs (pastors), and so that the church may take God seriously again.
    Regarding Prayerlessness: (Brackets are the interpretation/meaning)
    Isaiah 56:10-12
    10 His watchmen (Pastors & Intercessors) are blind: they are all ignorant, they are all dumb dogs, they cannot bark (discern or foresee danger); sleeping, lying down, loving to slumber (Luke warm, carnal, apathetic). 11 Yea, they are greedy dogs which can never have enough, and they are shepherds (Pastors) that cannot understand: they all look to their own way, every one for his gain, from his quarter (Lets get all we need for our church and who gives a whip about the death of innocent babies, or Australia’s future, as long as we have got what we need for the moment). 12 Come ye, say they, I will fetch wine (lets have fun activities and musical performances, entertaining the body of Christ), and we will fill ourselves with strong drink (disregard the full gospel, selective obedience); and to morrow shall be as this day, and much more abundant. (Assuming all will be well, but Jesus will return like a thief in the night)
    You Said:
    Is God judging our State of Victoria? God told Abraham that he would even spare Sodom and Gomorrah if their but a few righteous people in the city.
    FACT: God totally destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah he didn’t totally destroy VIC. So don’t confuse the matter. It may seem like you are trying to make Ps. Danny look like he implied there were no righteous people in VIC, which he DID NOT. Did you personally consult him on the matter before belittling him and implying he’s a false prophet? You don’t even know him personally. Besides, be careful what you say about prophets, because if he is appointed by God as a prophet, you may be in grave danger and will be held accountable for it. (see Hosea 4) Especially if you influence multitudes to believe your opinion.
    You said:
    This is not the day of God’s judgment.
    Inferring that Pastor Danny said that, when Danny didn’t say this was the day of God’s judgment.
    You Said:
    Like Job, we have to learn to accept both good and trouble from God, then trust in his providence (Job 2:9-10).
    FACT: God withdrew his hand of protection from Job, when Satan challenged God that Job would turn against God. So Satan was granted that right to attack, rob kill and destroy from Job. In Job’s case it was for a test, not a punishment. Trouble does not come from God; at certain times God allows it. Jesus came to give life and more abundantly, the devil comes to rob, kill and destroy. So don’t confuse the devils evil works, as acts of God. Re-study Job the entire book in context, before you make blatantly outrageous claims, especially since you are in a position of significant influence over many people.
    God cannot do evil, even his judgments are good, disagree than (check the bible thoroughly for yourself) One example Psalm 119:39 Turn away my reproach which I fear: for thy judgments are good.
    Maybe you need to apply 2 Timothy 2:15, lest you be ashamed by your lack of knowledge of God’s word. In the New Testament approval for ministry or credentials comes from the Holy Spirit, not from man, credentials from a bible college. Yet unfortunately nowadays men have re-arrange God’s divine plan for ordination. (See 1 Timothy, 2 Timothy)
    2 Timothy 2:15
    Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
    Study the word of God, not the doctrines of men, or theological and man-made structures that are deemed necessary for the government to approve Bible College as an Austudy funded course, or what ever…
    FACT:
    Even though we are in the Dispensation of Grace, in the New Testament, The bible clearly says believers can still abuse it, and fail the grace of God.
    Heb 12:15 “Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled;”
    You Said:
    We are in a season of favour?
    The world is in a financial crisis, and you say we are in a season of favour? Drought and bushfires, abortion legalised, unemployment skyrocketing, fear and loss of security to families regarding their futures.
    Read Amos. Just because a church is growing, and prospering financially (church likened to the kingdom mentioned in Amos) it does NOT mean all is well, and God is pleased. That’s why God sent his prophet to warn the people… you should check Amos out again, we can never stop learning.
    As someone earlier pointed out…
    In Danny’s post he indicates the removal of Gods protection particularly over the state of Victoria. I think a true prophetic voice warns Gods people of coming events before they happen, such as in the book of Acts 11:27 When a prophet warned of a coming famine over the whole world.
    ADVISE for ALL CHRISTIANS:
    If you take Christianity seriously, and want to be sure of your salvation and really know Jesus intimately, it is absolutely vital that you are being taught the full truth of the bible, so whenever your taught a message from your local pastor please, consider Acts 17:11
    “These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, to see or confirm whether those things were so.”
    The simple believe every word, but the prudent look well into his way.
    Narrow is the way that leads to life, and few there are that find it.
    So please be careful what who you believe, and allow to influence or persuade your beliefs. Our guide must be in line with the bible. Not man’s opinions. The Holy Spirit will never contradict the word of God. For it is better to trust in God than to put confidence in man, and in the end times many shall fall away from the faith, and be deceived.
    Col 2:4,5-8
    4 And this I say, lest any man should beguile you with enticing words. 6 As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in him: 7 Rooted and built up in him, and established in the faith, as ye have been taught (taught by the word of God), abounding therein with thanksgiving. 8 Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.
    God’s will be done and His Kingdom come, for Jesus glory!
    May God’s grace and mercy be upon you Ps. Mark

  115. JODIE & MIRIAM,
    My response is a little late but if you still follow this thread, please remember that naming and shaming is COMPLETELY BIBLICAL. Check out Galatians 2:11-14, 1 Tim 1:20, 2 Tim 4:14 and 3 John 1:9.
    What would have been inappropriate for Mark (or anyone else) to do, would be to expose a private and personal matter publicly and even in those circumstances there comes a point that others need to become aware (Matt 18:17) As commented previously, Danny forfeited his right to privacy the minute he went to the media with his comments. He wasn’t interested in discussing it with other churches or submitting such a difficult ‘message’ to the scrutiny of other mature Christian leaders, instead he went straight to a Press Release. Public rebuke therefore is the most appropriate course of action, not only to protect other naïve and immature Christians but to also let non-believers know that those comments don’t represent the views of the wider Christian community. Confrontation is never pleasant but once in a while we need to get our hands dirty.
    ‘Pastor’ means Shepherd as you know and one of his many responsibilities is to warn his flock and others within his sphere of influence from error and false doctrines (misrepresentation of truth). It’s hard to do that without naming the source and the content. When my antivirus program pops up ‘virus threat alerts’ on my screen, it names the virus and if I click on ‘more details’ it tells me what it’s capable of to make me aware. When consumers need protection from buying products that are not genuine, the best way to raise their awareness is to name the merchant who sells them.
    The typical (and predictable) counter-attack from Danny’s supporters has been that those who criticise him have a vendetta against him. That kind of persecution complex is one of the cheapest forms of defence from people who don’t want to be held accountable.
    And Miriam, we can’t repent for other people’s sins. We can only intercede for God’s Spirit to bring them to repentance. We can’t be judged for the sins of others. If you found a Scripture in the NEW TESTAMENT that we can repent on behalf of unbelievers please point it out to me. ‘Confessing the sins of the nation’ stayed with Daniel, Nehemiah and Ezra. They entered into covenants with God during times of national reform. We cannot enter into any more covenants now as the covenant the Christ made on our behalf with the Father is sealed and final. There is no room for more!

  116. ANON,
    You post is filled with emotion but little thought. Since you’re a late comer to the discussion the onus is on you to read the posts and thread thus far, to understand what and why we objected. Going through the motions again is not a luxury many of us have.
    It is getting both tiresome and tedious having to read all the creative hermeneutics and exegetical acrobatics trying to make a case for Danny’s “warning”. The part that is REALLY beginning to bore me is the single-mindedness and narrow vision of the abortion issue.
    Here’s a thought. Abortion, prostitution, murder, homosexuality, paedophilia, drugs, fraud and the like are all SYMPTOMS. The root cause of it all is ***SIN***. When people believe in the gospel and deal with their SIN in general, all symptoms begin to disappear. If you want to preach AGAINST something, preach against the root cause of all society’s ills, don’t just isolate one of the many symptoms. And then introduce THE GOSPEL that God forgives confessing sinners free of charge to them, since Christ paid the bill. Christ also made bail for us so we don’t have to ‘do time’.
    WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU PEOPLE? What makes you categorise and classify one sin over others? Have you stopped to think that even if people STOP practicing abortion, if they don’t receive Christ, believe in the gospel and repent, they remain condemned to eternal damnation? The whole universe is out of whack for centuries now and abortion is the only thing you can come up with? As ‘Philip’ on the No 2 blog posted insightfully, all sin in worthy of God’s judgment not just abortion.
    In a sin wallowing world, disasters (personal and national) are happening daily. Just watch your 6 o’clock news. It’s part and parcel of a fallen universe. We’ve been kicked out of Eden where a “comprehensive insurance policy” applied. Armed angelic guards are blocking the entrance so no-one can force their way back in. We can only wait for Christ’s kingdom to be restored fully, before we can enjoy those idyllic conditions again! This “national protection” notion is utopian and typical of Pentecostal triumphalism.
    Peace!

  117. Hi Miriam,
    Just to answer your questions … our church had a combined all church prayer meeting last Sunday evening for the bush fires. We have also been spending time in prayer in each of our 10 weekend church meetings over this also month. In addition, we have a special women’s event this week that has been turned into a prayer meeting for the bush fires too. So we, like many other churches, are doing all we can to pray about this tragic situation.
    We also have collected a lot of money, sent volunteers to help, provided food, clothing, and accomodation, and our community counselling centre is offering free support for people experiencing trauma from the bush fires.
    Thanks

  118. Hi Anon
    John has addressed your questions well, as have numbers of other comments on this blog. So I won’t repeat what has been said elsewhere.
    For your interest, I am a Pentecostal. There are many things that I love about Pentecostalism and there are some things that I dislike about SOME expressions of Pentecostalism, such as extreme prosperity teaching, elevation of experience over Biblical truth, somewhat shallow teaching, elevation of spiritual gifts over character at times, elevation of personal revelation over scriptural teaching, a lack of appropriate accountability, etc, etc (this is material for a future blog post). How Danny has handle his so-called ‘prophetic word’ is an example to me of a Pentecostal who doesn’t understand some core Biblical truths nor how prophecy is supposed to oeprate in a New Testament context (see my comments on part 2 of this blog post for futher details).

  119. So John your saying therefore in summary that you don’t believe in “Intercession” and “standing in the gap” “on behalf of”, Or you don’t believe that the OT is relevant to today? for example 2 chronicles 7: 13-14,
    “If my people……
    Your bascically saying that this verse has no implication to today, therefore the OT to you is not inspiried by God or by the Holy Spirit, Its just a bunch of books good for bible stories???? When then do Bible Colleges have a subject called Old Testament Survey???? Maybe because IT IS Relevant!!!
    My point is that no one has the right to call PS Danny a false prophet and call him a heretical preacher.

  120. Miriam (big sigh),
    I note that you commented on Danny’s blog and he was happy to display your post since it was ‘supportive’ of him, but he has refused to display mine and Philip’s from yesterday since we challenged his views. It never ceases to amaze me how defensive Christians get when someone chooses to exercise their biblical right (duty) to discernment. “Two or three prophets should speak, and the OTHERS SHOULD WEIGH CAREFULLY WHAT IS SAID.” (1 Cor 14:29) “do not treat prophecies with contempt. TEST EVERYTHING. Hold on to the good.” (1 Thes 5:21) Why do you think that is Miriam? If there was no possibility of error why are we urged to ‘weigh carefully what is said’?
    It is difficult to respond to your post without risking offending you and sounding unkind. We have gone around in so many circles over this issue by now that I’m beginning to get dizzy! Nonetheless, the instruction to Timothy was to “correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction” and “the Lord’s servant must not quarrel; instead, he must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful”. I’m not assuming a teaching role here, but I am challenged to defend my apologetics so I need as much patience. So help me Jesus!
    Between myself and other fellow bloggers, there are 9 pages of posted comments within Mark’s No 1 and No 2 articles. If you only read snippets of the last few comments you don’t have the full picture of what we said and why.
    Your digital ‘body language’ gives hints of frustration and emotion which although are not wrong in themselves, they make it difficult to slow down and pay attention to Biblical detail when your emotions are on overdrive. I’m not sure if attention to detail is something that comes natural to you, but your opening statement shows that you didn’t pay much attention to what I wrote.
    In my last paragraph I wrote: “And Miriam, we can’t repent for other people’s sins. WE CAN ONLY INTERCEDE for God’s Spirit to bring them to repentance.”
    Your opening statement reads: “So John your [sic] saying therefore in summary that YOU DON’T BELIEVE IN “INTERCESSION”
    So Miriam once again, we CAN INTERCEDE for other people but CANNOT REPENT on their behalf. There is a difference. Interceding is to ask God to convict them of their sin(s) by the Holy Spirit as promised in John 16:8, and bring them to “repentance that leads to salvation” (2 Cor 7:10) and / or ask God to forgive them of their ignorance as Jesus prayed on the cross “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” Note however Jesus only asked God to forgive them as a mercy plea, he did not ‘repent’ on their account. God can’t forgive someone who doesn’t repent, but this plea is more along the lines of ‘don’t count it against them Lord, overlook their ignorance please’
    Repenting on behalf of someone else is to literally say something like this: “Lord forgive ME for Samantha’s abortion”. If you draw this out to its logical conclusion, then God is supposed to respond by saying “no worries Miriam, Samantha doesn’t think she’s done anything wrong as she’s pro-choice, but since you repented on her behalf, she’s now scot-free and can go to heaven. Oh… and all her other sins apart from abortion….who cares, so long as you repent for her, she’ll be right”. Does that sound logical to you? If that was the case the whole world would be saved! Who needs evangelism?
    Third party repentance is not a New Testament concept. In the NT believers are held accountable at an individual level (2 Cor 5:10). People need to be convicted, confess and repent OF THEIR OWN sins individually. “The dead were judged according to what THEY had done as recorded in the books”. (Rev 20:12). What’s the good of repenting for someone who will continue doing the same thing again tomorrow? Repent all you want for the politicians who voted the Bill, if God doesn’t bring about a change of heart, the Bill will stay. And how naïve is it to think that a legal prohibition will abolish the practice altogether? It is illegal to distribute narcotics; has that stopped the drug dealers? It’s illegal to own a firearm; has that stopped guns from being sold on the black market?
    Now on the important point of Biblical interpretation of the Old Testament. I don’t recall reading anyone’s post that said the OT is irrelevant, not inspired by the Holy Spirit and only good for stories! What WE ARE saying is that you can’t pluck a text from anywhere in the OT and apply it apples-with-apples to Christians and more importantly unbelievers. Yes the OT is highly important, without it the crucifixion doesn’t make any sense, but how we interpret and apply it makes all the difference.
    The OT was “only a shadow of the good things that are coming—not the realities themselves” (Heb 10:1) Clearly many things from the OT don’t apply to us anymore. We no longer need rituals, animal sacrifices, blood sprinkling, food offerings, high priests, we don’t stone disobedient children, women who grab men’s genitals to rescue their husband from a fight don’t have their hands cut off and anyone who shakes your hand during your menstrual cycle is not considered ceremonially unclean. If your husband is suspecting you of having an affair and sends you to your pastor for counselling, you will not be asked to drink a potion that will bring a curse to cause you abdominal swelling (a symptom of ovarian cancer) and rotting thighs (meningococcus disease). See Deut 25:11-12, Lev 15:19. Num 5:21-22.
    The old covenant is inferior to the new. “…the covenant of which he [Jesus] is mediator is superior to the old one, and it is founded on better promises. For if there had been nothing wrong with that first covenant, no place would have been sought for another” (Heb 8:6-7)
    The biggest confusion in this discussion has arisen from the Israel / church comparison. So once again, here it goes: When the NT speaks of ‘the church’ it is referring to born again, forgiven sinners that make up the covenant community of believers worldwide. The OT equivalent of the church was THE ENTIRE NATION of Israel that had God as its sovereign ruler. The law was given to apply to the entire country not to some elect groups. The ‘unbelievers’ in the OT were the heathen nations. Unbelievers today can be the people who live or work next to us. So when we think ‘church’ in OT terms, that was the whole nation.
    The 2 Chronicles 7: 13-14 that you quoted had a condition attached. Please pay close attention: “my people, who are called by my name” are obviously NOT UN-believers!!! The covenantal promise and condition was this; if they humbled themselves, and turned from THEIR wicked ways – NOT THE UNBELIEVING NATIONS AROUND THEM – then God would hear their prayers and heal their land.
    If you want to make this applicable in the NT even as a “broad principle” it would ONLY apply for sins that THE CHURCH as a group committed and needs to repent of, not sins that unbelievers have committed. The same way God didn’t expect Israelites to humble themselves and repent for the sins of the Amorites and Amalekites, he is not expecting Christians today to repent for the sins of a small group of politicians who passed a law in parliament.

  121. THE WORSHIP OF A TRIGGER-HAPPY GOD:
    (1) MISUNDERSTANDING OR
    (2) IDOLATRY?
    I’ll tick box No 2 thanks!
    Having read Danny’s initial Press Release, his follow-up blog and the persistent comments of his supporters, it is obvious to me by now that they all prefer to worship a trigger-happy God. I don’t claim word of knowledge here nor divine revelation, just an observation. I can’t hang my hat on it, but I think I’m close on the money.
    They have fashioned a God according to their own appetites and sense of justice. The thought of an all powerful God observing quietly from the sidelines while “babies are being murdered” and doing nothing to the perpetrators, is repugnant to them. THERE IS SOMETHING OFFENSIVE ABOUT THIS EXTRAVAGANT GRACE. It is a stench to the nostrils of trigger-happy Christians lusting for ‘retributive justice’.
    They can’t stomach God being so merciful so they find it easier to follow a trigger-happy deity. If you can’t accept God as he is and you worship a made-to-measure God, it’s a form of idolatry! This kind of ‘designer God’ caters to the tastes of a ‘niche market’ of believers who want justice NOW and can’t wait for later. Nothing new of course, it’s been happening for centuries, that’s why we have so many cults.
    Sorry to burst the bubble here but God is far more patient, merciful and tolerant than we give him credit for. This long patience on God’s behalf is not weakness but it’s his way of leading us to repentance. “Or do you show contempt for the riches of his kindness, tolerance and patience, not realizing that God’s kindness leads you toward repentance?” (Rom 2:4) “He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.”(2 Pe 3:9) and this…“God presented him as a sacrifice of atonement, through faith in his blood. He did this to demonstrate his justice, because in his forbearance he had left the sins committed beforehand unpunished” (Rom 3:25)
    If this were not true I wouldn’t be typing this post right now, I would have been smoke a long time ago and would be barbequed with Lucifer in eternity. “he does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities” (Psalm 103:10)
    See, when you lie with dogs you wake up with fleas. If you immerse yourself in Old Testament thinking, all you see is a punishing God. In the Old Testament, divine justice and punishment were administered quickly because there was no Christ to atone for people’s sins. The blood of animals was not enough, “because it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins” (Heb 10:4) The missing gap between an angry God and vile sinners is what Christ came to fill as mediator. Job’s words resonated this ‘gap’ prophetically (in my opinion) when he said “He is not a man like me that I might answer him, that we might confront each other in court. IF ONLY THERE WERE SOMEONE TO ARBITRATE BETWEEN US, to lay his hand upon us both, someone to remove God’s rod from me, so that his terror would frighten me no more.” (Job 9:32-34)
    James and John were trigger-happy when a Samaritan village wasn’t particularly hospitable to Jesus and they demanded ‘show time’ but Jesus rebuked them. I find this parallel with Danny’s views very eerie. “When the disciples James and John saw this, they asked, “Lord, DO YOU WANT US TO CALL FIRE (!!!!) DOWN FROM HEAVEN TO DESTROY THEM?” But Jesus turned and rebuked them, and he said, “You do not know what kind of spirit you are of, for the Son of Man did not come to destroy men’s lives, but to save them.” and they went to another village.” (Luke 9:54-55)

  122. Hi John fm Brisvegas,
    Your explanation & logic on 2 Chron 7:13-14 is almost flawless.
    According to your understanding & interpretation of the Bible, do you think the principles in these 2 verses have any application for the Church today?

  123. NOTE: John from Brisvegas
    And other people who share his opinon.
    Ps Danny has been asking the big church pastors to gather and pray for particular things, and countless times has shared with them. Y you think he didn’t, is because the big church pastors don’t or haven’t been informing the congregations. That’s why. So your statement is speculation based on assumption. Assumption usually is not good, ppl rarely assume good of people but instead evil. So then possibly the source of such assumptions may not be of God.
    Please know the facts b4 you make statements that influence others.
    God Bless you all!
    And may the communication of your faith become effectual through the aknowledging of every good thing which is in you thru Christ Jesus. (Phil 1:6)
    Sincerely,
    Anon Servant

  124. Hello Anon servant.
    If you truly believed and stand by what you have written, you would not be so fearful NOT to use your real name.
    The ‘big’ church pastors and even ‘small’ church pastors DO pray according to God’s Holy Spirit leading them and not acording to some pizza dreams or whimsical ideas.
    Christians cannot be so self righteous as to breath ‘firey hell’ and lustfully spew out ‘judgement’ on people where God has NOT said! Judgement begins in ‘the house of God’ first…..
    NOW is the TIME for God’s GRACE to move in LOVE to reach people for Christ!
    Time IS short!

  125. Hi Steven (Yip),
    I checked out some of your earlier posts and you seem to have a scholarly thirst that I’m not sure I can satisfy! But since you asked, I’ll have a crack at it and try to answer to the best of my ability. Just keep in mind that I write neither as a scholar nor as a theologian, but simply as a ‘strongly opinionated layman’. Therefore, don’t hang your hat on anything I say but search the Scriptures for yourself and if in doubt ‘ask an expert’. (That should get me off the hook!)
    COURTESY WARNING to other readers: If you are detail-intolerant, click on something else because you will find this painful. Don’t say I didn’t warn ya!
    Steven, you asked:

    According to your understanding & interpretation of the Bible, do you think the principles in these 2 verses [2 Chron 7:13-14] have any application for the Church today?

    The best answer I can give is a very loose and very broad YES and a definite NO in the context in which Danny Nalliah and overzealous revivalists apply it.
    The kindergarten version of 2 Chron 7:13-14 is basically this: “if you screw up and repent, I will help you”. When you apply this to an individual level it’s a no-brainer. We don’t even need to rely on Chronicles as the NT is full of repentance-forgiveness passages. John wrote “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness” 1 John 1:9. It doesn’t get any plainer than that.
    Where the Chronicles passage becomes problematic is, when you hit the four word promise “will heal your land”. Now stop and think what that could possibly mean in 21st century Australia, America or Hong Kong? If you want to import the passage/concept in a modern setting in an equal footing (apples-with-apples), it raises several problems that need considering. Without meaning to sound too fancy, you need to apply a process of deductive reasoning.

    • ‘Church’ in the OT is the entire nation of Israel. ‘Church’ in the NT is a select group of people within a nation or country.
    • ‘Church’ in the NT is NOT the state because church and state are separate.
    • ‘Church’ in the OT IS the state.
    • God’s promises therefore in the OT extended to an entire nation, whereas God’s promises of blessing in the NT can only extend to the church which is only a small part of a nation.

    Coming back to your original question. Does that passage in Chronicles apply to us today in principle? As I said, YES but loosely. If we sin as a church and repent as a church, God will forgive us (no rocket science there). But the question then is, if God forgives us can we expect God to heal the land (protect us from disasters, get rid of unemployment etc) or are we to expect something different?
    The nearest equivalent in the NT of God dealing with people who sinned as a group, is Jesus’ evaluation of the seven churches in the book of Revelation. The same principles extend there, Jesus is asking them to repent, but you will notice he is NOT promising to ANY of them that he will bless the whole country they live in and rid of all its problems. Instead, the promises that would follow are for Christians ONLY, they have a spiritual dimension, they point to the future and are all addressed to ‘he who overcomes’: So he who overcomes…

    • I will give the right to eat from the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God (2:7)
    • will not be hurt at all by the second death (2:11)
    • I will give some of the hidden manna. I will also give him a white stone with a new name written on it, known only to him who receives it. (2:17)
    • I will give authority over the nations (2:26)
    • Will be dressed in white. I will never blot out his name from the book of life, but will acknowledge his name before my Father and his angels (3:5)
    • I will make [him/her] a pillar in the temple of my God. Never again will he leave it. I will write on him the name of my God and the name of the city of my God (3:12)
    • I will give the right to sit with me on my throne, just as I overcame and sat down with my Father on his throne. (3:21)

    Now compare these promises with ‘healing the land’ and tell me if they match. Nowhere here is Jesus promising to “protect” the countries those Christians lived in from earthquakes, tsunamis, fires or civil unrest.
    Peace! (got to get some sleep now!)
    PS (You might wanna check my other post from today on the No 2 blog page 3 for the same topic)

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