His life as your life


Israel Folau speaks from a culture that is innately conflicted. It’s a God loves you/hates you position in which God is seen to love those who love Him and hate those who don’t. It’s not difficult to see similarities in this kind of Christianity to the attitudes found in Islam. Allah is viewed as hating and killing heretics and homosexuals – hence the justification for beheading non-believers and pushing homosexuals off tall buildings. It's not too different to the ‘god’ worshiped by Saul of Tarsus before He saw the Christ and saw that in chaining people up and killing them in the name of God, he was doing the same to Christ in the very act of attempting to live in God’s will.


A curious feature of fundamentalism can be a desire to be thought of as part of the Body of Christ, while maintaining an identity and impetus from the law. Law can pretend to be gracious but is under-belly is austerity and cruelty.

Anything constructed in the law is separatist and contradictory because it is the product of the knowledge of good and evil. The law belonged to the age of Adam’s separation from God. A separation that does not participate in the ‘belonging’ that is the possession of everyone in the new covenant. Why new covenant? In the new covenant Adam’s separation is undone in the person of Christ and in the embrace of the trinity. In the post cross age all have access to the union with God that is Christ’s fellowship in the trinity. His relationship to God is ours. Since the cross we are one with God by inclusion and indwelling, which is to say we are positioned in God and God by the Spirit has woven Himself into our being. But we must embrace God’s narrative and not some perversion of it.

We are not at liberty to trump up our own gospel.

We cannot have ‘our law’ and have ourselves in the Body of Christ at the same time. It’s one or the other. Where this is attempted as ‘another gospel’ it perpetuates a dualistic, split-mode mindset in the face of Christ’s declaration that God has made the two one in His person. Thomas Torrance observes,

“While the Church fathers and theologians of the Nicene-Constantinopolitan period thought of catholicity mainly in terms of the oneness and identity of the Church’s faith throughout the world (ο
κουμένη), we must not lose sight of the profound bearing of catholicity upon the rejection of all dualist patterns of thought that kept on giving rise to schismatic movements within and outside the borders of the Church. At its deepest level the catholicity of the Church has to do with its commitment to the universal range of the incarnation and the atonement, for he who became flesh in Jesus Christ was identical with the very Word of God by whom all things visible and invisible were created and in whom they continue to consist.” (1)


We can’t be sons of God and sons of the slave woman at the same time.

‘Belonging’ belongs to the reconciliation and inclusion achieved by the incarnation and never by any aspect of the law – the law that has been annulled in favour of union and communion with Christ.

Attachment to the law in part or in whole dilutes the power of the atonement and suffocates the incarnation. In some circles it renders life in the Spirit meaningless, leaving a stump of woodenness where there could have been a tree. We can be technically of the Body of Christ, yet be the children of the slave woman – living without our inheritance and outside the climate of spirit and life. So what merit is there in labelling ourselves of the Body when we are heirs who in poverty and penury as peasants when we could be kings? Why be a slave when you can be a son?

“But what does Scripture say? "Get rid of the slave woman and her son, for the slave woman's son will never share in the inheritance with the free woman's son." Gal 4.30 NIV.

* '
HELL NO!' Talk by Richard Rohr on youtube.

(1) Torrance, Thomas F.. The Trinitarian Faith: The Evangelical Theology of the Ancient Catholic Church (T&T Clark Cornerstones) (p. 284). Bloomsbury Publishing. Kindle Edition.