Political prisoner Paul Furlong needs our support.

Melbourne Pastor Paul Furlong has just been released from jail after serving nearly three weeks for the unspeakable crime in Victoria of daring to hold church services. For that he was whisked away by a group of armed police, denied basic rights (even denied having a Bible for a week), and treated just like your garden variety axe murderer.

Paul is pastor at the Revival Gospel Healing Ministries church in Narre Warren, and has dared to defy Big Brother statists by putting the worship of God ahead of their ludicrous and senseless draconian lockdowns – the fourth one Victoria has now had.

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Monica Smit of Reignite Democracy Australia was there when he was finally released. Her report makes for scary reading indeed:

I can confirm that he was granted bail today.

 

I attended the hearing and was shocked to hear the criminal terms being used on such a pious and honourable man. Pastor Paul is a charity worker and man of God. He’s been married for over 30 years, has 3 children, a business and has saved hundreds of children from sex-trafficking and poverty. If he is a criminal for exercising his freedom of speech, religion, and assembly…Australia is going down a dangerous path.

 

The prosecutor was Senior Sergeant Luke Holmes who appeared via webcam wearing a mask alone in a closed room. The most surprising thing he did was attempting to add a bail condition that Pastor Paul be restricted from communicating with myself (Monica Smit) and Nick Patterson, leader of PeaceMakers. The judge declined that condition promptly.

 

The Pastor is not allowed to communicate via social media whatsoever. His wife, Julie, had to give what’s called ‘an assurity’ of $15,000 which she says is coming out of their personal savings. This means she must help to ensure that Paul doesn’t break his bail conditions. She is obliged to report him to the police or risk losing their savings.

 

Luke Holmes said more than 5 times that the Pastor is very dogmatic in his views, He explained, “Mr Furlong holds his beliefs very strongly, which is a concern for us”. It seems that Paul’s courage of conviction is threatening to the Sergeant.

 

Are citizens with strong views a danger to society? Or are they a danger to the establishment? I’ll let you decide.

 

Luke Holmes seemed very unnerved with this particular statement the Pastor said online a few times… “I will obey God over man”. Luke continued to say, “Holding mass gatherings puts the entire country at risk,” and he justifies the police response by saying their actions were to protect the public.

 

Luke Holmes also attempted to discredit Paul by mocking his use of common law, his tone was mocking and belittling.

 

The judge called on Paul’s wife, Julie who is a primary school teacher. You could see the struggle on her face. Being away from her loving husband for well over 2 weeks has clearly taken a toll on the family. She was asked by the judge “Do you share the same beliefs as your husband when it comes to COVID restrictions?”. Julie took many moments to answer, she said “I am a law-abiding citizen…I believe in the same bible my husband does”.

There you have it folks: if you are a biblical Christian who strongly holds to your beliefs, you are a major threat to the State, and you will be targeted. In the People’s Republik of Victoriastan under Dan Andrews, we have common criminals and youth gangs running amok, but if you dare to believe the Bible and stay true to it, you WILL be arrested and locked up – to keep us all safe, presumably.  

Thanks Dan. It is so reassuring to know that you have our backs covered.

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Rebel News has also been covering this story, and Avi Yemini spoke to Paul after his release:

After spending 17 days in jail, with most of that time in solitary confinement, Pastor Paul walked out of the Metropolitan Remand Centre in Ravenhall, Victoria, last night and into the arms of his loving wife. Pastor Paul was initially taken into custody on May 29 for allegedly “inciting” church in Narre Warren during the latest Melbourne lockdown. 

 

During their search for the pastor, police raided three of his family members’ homes before finally locating and arresting Pastor Paul at his business. I waited all evening outside of the jail to greet Pastor Paul upon his release. The pastor was surprisingly optimistic about his time in captivity and was quick to forgive his jailers.  

 

Even though he had his Bible confiscated, he did have an opportunity to sing and minister to his fellow inmates before being released.  Since initially breaking his story, the community has helped us crowdfund a top-rate legal team to get Pastor Paul out.  

 

Thank you for making that possible. But there’s still a long road ahead. We’ve already spent thousands of dollars to get to this point, and this was just the first of many legal battles to come for Pastor Paul. The government has no plans on letting up, and we don’t either. 

Thankfully some others have been concerned about all the deplorable things happening in Victoria. Alan Jones on Sky News for example has long been calling out the Dictator of Victoria and his totalitarian power grabs, and he has also spoken a number of times about the plight of Furlong. Last night for example he discussed both cases once again. He says he plans to have Paul on his show in the near future, so stay tuned.

The Liberal Party and Christians

I could speak of plenty of other examples of anti-Christian bigotry and discrimination occurring right now in Australia, but let me briefly mention just one more, this one having to do with the Liberal Party in South Australia. It seems the good Lib’s there have a bad case of Christophobia.

Here is how a report in yesterday’s Australian begins the story:

Conservative South Australian Liberal MPs have urged Josh Frydenberg to intervene in the state branch after venting outrage that hundreds of Pentecostal Christians had been forced out of the party. Nicolle Flint, Tony Pasin and Alex Antic lashed out at the moderate-dominated state branch in a meeting of federal Liberal MPs on Tuesday, after 150 conservative members were terminated and a further 400 members asked to “show cause” as to why they should not be kicked out.

 

In what was described as a “robust discussion”, the conservative MPs called on the Treasurer — the acting Liberal leader while Scott Morrison is overseas — to intervene in the state branch “as a matter of ­urgency”, according to sources in the meeting.

 

Finance Minister Simon Birmingham, a leading SA moderate, is claiming the suspended members were planning to “campaign against endorsed candidates at the next election” and some did not support the Liberal Party. Conservative MPs reject this and say no evidence has been provided to support the claim. They say it is a “power grab” by the moderate faction to maintain its control of the branch. Ms Flint, the member for Boothby, told the meeting it was the most “extraordinary and undemocratic decision I’ve seen in my time in Liberal Party”.

 

She said the requirement for members to sign statutory declarations pledging their loyalty was “offensive to our founding principles, especially free speech and democracy”, according to MPs. Mr Pasin said he joined parliament to defend freedom of religion and “I never thought I’d have to take up the fight within the Liberal Party”. “The message to Christians coming out of the Liberal Party in South Australia is clear: ‘You are not welcome,’” he told MPs.

That’s the current Liberal Party for you today. Homosexuals are of course fully welcome, as are Muslims and atheists – but if you happen to be a biblical Christian, it seems you are verboten from coming anywhere near the Party. I wrote about this worrying trend with the Lib’s last month, where I noted that true conservatives and true Christians are becoming threatened species in the Liberal Party.

Please keep Paul Furlong in your prayers. He is a Daniel living in the midst of far too many Christian cowards who would never dare rock the system, but just blindly go along with whatever our statist overlords decree. Paul is a champion, and his arduous journey is not over yet.

This article was first published here.

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Bill Muehlenberg teaches ethics, apologetics and theology at several Melbourne Bible Colleges. His independent blog, Culture Watch, has over 5,000 articles commenting on the major cultural, social and political issues of the day. Bill's podcast is exclusively produced for Good Sauce readers and fans.

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