In recent months we have been witnessing Australia’s three most populous states going to the polls – one right after the other! Victoria, with 25% of Australia’s population, went on 29 November last year, Queensland with 20% on 31 January this year and New South Wales, the largest state with 32%, goes to the polls on 28 March. Extraordinary swings and momentous changes have taken place in Victoria and Queensland. Now many are asking – what lies ahead for New South Wales?
As the people of New South Wales get ready to vote Rev. Peter Rahme, pastor and author in the Sydney region, urges,“in the run-up to the March 28 state election, it is imperative that we examine closely the values of political parties and see which one ticks all the boxes in relation to the values that we consider dear to our heart and carry deep in our soul – i.e. Christian values which are founded on, and formed by, God’s eternal truth and will stand the test of time and succeed over the trials of life.”
We are therefore glad to send you the following Christian Values Checklist. We believe it will help you to pray for the election and, if you reside in New South Wales, to vote. We encourage you to send it to your family, friends and any other contacts in NSW. (Click the Checklist to more easily read the text, download or print the PDF file.)
Judging by the results of the above Checklist we can see that the current Premier of NSW, Mike Baird, whilst a practising Christian, leads a party that has fallen into the grip of secular humanism. The same could be said of Luke Foley, the Labor Leader of the Opposition. While claiming to be a practising Catholic, he leads a party that seems even more committed to eradicating Christian values from public life.
While the official party platform of a political party may not measure up well to the Christian Values Checklist, we must not simply write them off. We want to encourage you to pray, not only for the party leaders but also for all the candidates and especially Christians in this election.
Daniel, in the Bible, served as a top advisor to four pagan kings in two different empires! In one place we read that “Daniel so distinguished himself among the administrators and satraps that the king planned to set him over the whole kingdom” (Daniel 6:3). How did he hold on to his faith in God and excel as a senior official in a pagan society? How did he avoid compromise and keep himself above reproach? It seems clear that it was the time spent in his upstairs room where “three times a day he got down on his knees and prayed, giving thanks to God” (Daniel 6:10).
In this regard, we want to commend the Rev Hon Fred Nile MLCfor his consistent stand for truth and Christian values in the political arena for over 34 years. He is now the longest-serving member of the NSW parliament. We attribute this to the fact that the Christian Democratic Party, which he leads, is reliant on prayer. In each edition of their monthly Christian newspaper, Family World News, there is a full page of Prayer Points covering each day of the month.
The good news is that while the major political parties continue their slide into moral relativism, many of the so-called minor parties based on Judeo-Christian values are going from strength to strength. This will be the first time the Christian Democratic Party in NSW has been able to field 93 candidates in all 93 seats.
Interestingly the current 40 Days of Delightfinishes on Sunday 29 March just one day after the election. We are very glad that so much prayer and fasting for our nation is taking place during these 40 Days.
Let us thank God for the privilege of living in a free democracy in which we as Christians can be involved in Government and in the political process. May we not take this for granted. In all our involvements we need to pray. As we do let us believe that God will do great things!
David Rowsome and Warwick Marsh
PS For more information about voting in the NSW election, please go to this excellent briefing by Jenny Stokes of Salt Shakers. Closer to the election check out the Australian Christian Lobbywebsite for a very comprehensive Election Guide. As well, FamilyVoice Australia will release closer to the election an Election Survey which shows each individual candidate’s position.