Folau’s post shows he won’t be silenced
AUSTRALIA'S highest profile rugby union player Israel Folau has again courted controversy after posting a link on social media to a video that warns against "tolerance" of same-sex marriage.
The video posted to Twitter features an 11-minute sermon by late American evangelist David Wilkerson who warns of "sexual perversions beyond description".
Folau tweeted the video on Tuesday morning along with a message asking people not to close their hearts and while stating his actions were motivated by love.
"With great love, I wanted to share this video in the hope that people watch it and think about it," he wrote. "Jesus is coming back soon and he wants us to turn to him through repentance and baptism in the name of Jesus Christ (Acts 2:38) please don't harden your heart."
With great love i wanted to share this video in the hope that people watch it and think about it. Jesus is coming back soon and he wants us to turn to him through repentance and baptism in the name of Jesus Christ (Acts 2:38) please don't harden your heart https://t.co/PtDoPCQDco— Israel Folau (@IzzyFolau) May 7, 2018
The video is called "It's time to get right with God" and features the evangelist's fire-and-brimstone sermon.
As expected, Folau has received a lot of backlash to the tweet.
Wondering if you think before you tweet? What if you had a young fan who was struggling with their sexuality and mental illness and seeing you public opinion pushed them over the edge?— Aly (@_alybrooks_) May 8, 2018
Won’t watch it. Won’t think about it. You’re a role model to young people all over - perhaps you need to think about the message you’re sending. Quoting the bible, a book that condemns all sorts of normal actions is incredibly hypocritical.— Phil Saal (@ethanqp) May 8, 2018
Others took a more humorous approach to it.
Can you please give me an exact date and time for when he is coming back? I need to know if I can finish the next season of Better Call Saul before then?— Billy Freeman (@freemanbilly81) May 8, 2018
While some agreed with the Waratahs star.
Carry on Israel, it's time we Christians spoke up, about the times we live in and the need to repent. Jesus will return soon, I think probably in our lifetime. It's time we spoke up, regardless of the consequences— Ash Deacon (@Oil_And_Lamps) May 8, 2018
You are so blessed izzy, im a kiwi myself and I'm going against anyone who persecutes you. Including most all blacks and silver ferns.. I know you'll stand strong because father christ is with you, Keep advancing the glorious kingdom. ♡♡♡♡— Reece Clarke-Tahata (@ILoveNasirJones) May 8, 2018
The evangelist who features in the video, David Wilkerson, died in a car crash in 2011. He had long preached about homosexuality as an abomination, according to The Sydney Morning Herald.
Rugby Australia opted not to sanction Folau in April after he used Instagram to suggest gay people would go to hell unless they repented their sin, despite sponsors, including Qantas, raising concerns over his anti-homosexual views.