Israel Folau, has caused controversy this week after posting an “offensive” and “homophobic” comment on his Instagram account. The rugby star’s initial Instagram post included a citation of James 1:2-4, which states:
Consider it all joy when you encounter various trials, because the testing of your faith produces endurance… so that you may be lacking in nothing.
In the comments section, a follower asked Folau, “what was gods [sic] plan for gay people?” Folau replied, consistent with the Bible and 2,000 years of Christian teaching, by saying, “HELL.. Unless they repent of their sins and turn to God.”
Doesn't quite fit with Israel Folau's "I love and respect all people for who they are and their opinions" line from last year. pic.twitter.com/A023XnxRBd
— Ben Coles (@bencoles_) April 3, 2018
According to the Sydney Morning Herald, the exchange was quickly shared on Twitter before “going viral around the world.” Sydney Convicts, Australia’s first gay and inclusive rugby union team, responded to Folau’s comments by expressing their disappointment.
Former Wales captain, and first openly gay rugby player, Gareth Thomas also responded to Folau saying, “I love and respect all people for who they are and their opinions, but personally [middle-finger emoji].”
Last year Folau sparked similar outrage after he took to Twitter to announce: “I love and respect all people for who they are and their opinions. But personally, I will not support gay marriage.”
I love and respect all people for who they are and their opinions. but personally, I will not support gay marriage.✌❤?
— Israel Folau (@IzzyFolau) September 13, 2017
This is the world we now live in. A Christian man takes the Bible seriously and the world responds with bewilderment and outrage. They cannot comprehend that somebody who claims to follow Jesus would actually believe what Jesus had to say about the issue. One can’t help but wonder, would they make such a fuss if Folau were Muslim?
Israel Folau is a truly despicable human being for making this statement. If rugby union supports and rewards a person like this, I have watched my last game of rugby union. https://t.co/AccPCdo2RN
— Angela Pulvirenti (@AngePulvirenti) April 4, 2018
How does Israel Folau still have a playing contract?? Honestly, they need to make an example of this complete piece of shit.
— eyeroll kween. (@kayohhaye) April 4, 2018
I don’t understand how Israel Folau can just get away with his hateful comments. Be religious all you want but that’s a bit much to condemn gay people to hell unless they repent. I’m religious myself & I believe God loves everyone. This world is for everyone. It’s disappointing.
— Candy Lee ? (@CandidlyCandy_) April 4, 2018
Isn’t it ironic that the “inclusive” bunch want Folau out of the game for expressing a different view? That’s how the tolerance band works after all…