Religious Reflexes

Some of the most spectacular moments in sport have come from a reflex reaction by a player, when they have kicked, passed, caught or hit a ball without pausing to think.

This week we witnessed a different kind of sporting reflex reaction when the Essendon AFL Club appointed a new CEO, only to pressure him to resign within a day of the announcement.

It was discovered that their brand-new CEO was also the leader of the board of a ‘controversial’ church that held ‘divisive’ views on abortion and homosexuality.

Yet, ‘City on a Hill’ church is Anglican, and the views it teaches are the same that have been held by mainstream Christian churches for thousands of years.

Most concerning was that Essendon’s reflex reaction was not because of anything the former-CEO said publicly: it was solely due to his affiliation with a church.

It should come as no surprise that we Christians will be persecuted for our faith, for Jesus said:

“If the world hates you, remember that it hated me first. The world would love you as one of its own if you belonged to it, but you are no longer part of the world. I chose you to come out of the world, so it hates you.” (John 15:18-19)

Nonetheless, we should pray that the sporting, political and intellectual leaders of our land might have the courage to listen to ‘dangerous’ views that are no-longer aligned to the ever-changing views of our progressive society.

At the same time, let’s pray that these kinds of ‘free kicks’ and ‘own goals’ of those who attack the teachings of Jesus might lead to increased opportunities to share the message of the love of Jesus with people whose main exposure to the Bible is via the talking heads of the media.


(photo credit: Mark Ehr via