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Bill Muehlenberg's commentary on issues of the day...

ACL: Are the Activists Ramping Things Up?

Dec 22, 2016

We know that Islamists hate Christianity and are happy to carry out diabolical attacks on it, using vehicles as weapons. It looks like Islamists may not be the only ones who engage in such deadly activities. The Australian Christian Lobby has had a van filled with gas bottles rammed into its offices last night, and it is looking very suspicious indeed.

It occurred just over 12 hours ago, and the driver of the van is badly injured with burns, so it is too early to say for certain that this was a deliberate attack, but it seems likely to have been so. The shocking episode has already had plenty of media coverage and rightly so.

Just after we saw another truck rammed into a Christmas crowd in Berlin, now this. Lyle Shelton who heads up the ACL was visibly shaken as TV cameras interviewed him this morning. He said he and his staff had received plenty of death threats simply for standing up for traditional marriage and wanting to protect children from harmful agendas like that of the “Safe Schools” militancy.

He said today:

This is a scene of absolute devastation. I never thought in coming to work for a public advocacy organisation like ACL that we would be subject to this sort of thing. This is not the Australia that I grew up in.
I don’t know the motivation of last night’s attack but the context of what I see is in the context of multiple death threats and threats of violence that my staff have endured over the course of this year. We’ve had to have this building locked for most of this year, we’ve never done that in the eight or nine years that I’ve worked here. This is a truly shocking situation for us.

acl-4For those who still have not heard the details on this, here is part of one media report on this:

A van filled with gas bottles has exploded after it rammed into the headquarters of the Australian Christian Lobby (ACL) in what the managing director has called an “attack on free speech”. ACL managing director Lyle Shelton tweeted the incident last night, saying a vehicle had rammed its office in Canberra just after 9:30pm.
Mr Shelton added that staff were safe, and photos he shared showed a burnt-out van in the car park near the building’s entrance. It remains unclear whether the incident was an accident or a targeted attack, but ACT police have confirmed they are investigating.
Police also said the male driver of the vehicle was the only person injured and that he had been taken to Canberra Hospital. The ABC understands the man was seriously injured in the blaze. Mr Shelton said he was shocked this could happen in Australia and described the explosion as a “targeted attack”.
“There is no doubt in my mind that ACL was the target,” he said. “Obviously we don’t know the motives of the person who drove this van, but we have received a number of death threats and threats of violence over the course of this year that we have reported to police.

Other leaders have expressed their deep concern about this incident:

Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce tweeted that the explosion was a “disgusting attack … [and] must be condemned by all”.
One Nation leader Pauline Hanson also took to social media, saying she was glad nobody was injured and hoped “police will soon find out who committed this cowardly attack”.
Coalition backbencher George Christensen tweeted that if the attack was politically motivated “it is disgraceful and should be denounced”.

Hatred of conservative Christian groups is of course sadly quite common. If you go to Facebook you will see a “F**k the australian christian lobby” page which FB evidently considers to be just fine. I too have FB pages which are set up by my enemies which feature some very vile and hateful material.

And if you type my name into google you will find various pages devoted to attacking and abusing me as well. The same for the ACL. So anyone who stands up for pro-family, pro-faith and pro-life issues will be targeted by the haters. I too have had plenty of hate mail over the years – many hundreds, if not thousands by now.

I too have had the occasional death threats. So the ACL is not alone in this hate and abuse. Any Christian who stands boldly in the public arena and challenges some of the radical agendas of the day knows all about this sort of animosity and opposition.

We can be thankful that no one was killed in this incident. We need to keep praying for the ACL and Lyle Shelton and all those who work there. This is not a walk in the park, but all out spiritual warfare, which manifests itself in episodes like this.

Now is not the time to shrink back or retreat because of cowardice. Now is the time to stand even stronger and more resolutely, asking God for his protection as we proclaim truth and seek to set the captives free.

Update

Now some media outlets are reporting that the police have said they briefly interviewed the man and the incident was not politically, religiously or ideologically motivated. Hmm. As one person on the social media just said about this: “I just saw that quote on news.com.au. So what we have is a random bloke driving around with gas bottles in his van; he randomly finds a building that deals with political, religious, and ideological issues, and then he randomly rams the building and sets the gas bottles alight… Yeah, I can see how that makes sense.”

Time will tell…

www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/van-rams-australian-christian-lobby-office-in-canberra/news-story/b69a0c77a2e46e0b16bf804f5671c114?nk=44fa4c43739d71069231ad4239c16773-1482364742
www.abc.net.au/news/2016-12-22/australian-christian-lobby-headquarters-rammed-by-burning-van/8140804

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34 Responses to ACL: Are the Activists Ramping Things Up?

  • Christianity is certainly not the “Come to Jesus and everything will be rosy” message that we sometimes hear.

  • I’m appalled Bill
    Horrific act of cowardice .
    Stand strong ACL and Bill muhlenberg

  • This headline from ABC news,”Australian Christian Lobby headquarters damaged by van explosion ‘not politically, religiously motivated'” Seriously?!!!!
    Much Love and many prayers for Lyle and all at ACL.

  • Thanks Mandy. Yes, I just added an update to my article (see above).

  • Many thanks Bill, for commenting on this incident so promptly. The Church and it’s affiliates here in Australia are now under open persecution. History tells us that the persecuted church is the one that grows. Luke highlighted that in the second part of his work “The Acts of The Apostles” , and it has continued to happen right through into the times that we now live in. With reference to homosexuality and all of its hideous offshoots, Scripture first points to Sodom and Gomorrah where rampant homosexuality was one of the contributors to God’s decision to reign down destruction. I’m not sure if homosexuality was an issue in the time of Noah apart from the later incident with his son Ham (Bill you may be able to comment on that). Having said all of that, history indicates that homosexuality in all of its disgusting practices becomes pronounced in a society that reached its zenith and is now in social, moral, and financial decline. It is time for the church here in Australia to stop “playing games” with its Biblical foundations and step up to the plate. Bill, you have been warning us through a number of your recent articles concerning the true nature of God and how we should relate to him. I have personally taken those articles very seriously, and have had to repent over some of the beliefs and values that I’ve held. Bill, time has run out for Australia, thank you again for all the diligent effort and research that you put into your “timely” articles. Regards, Kelvin.

  • Many thanks Kelvin. We all need to stand strong, and we all need to stop playing games. Things are hotting up, and a lukewarm faith just will not cut it.

  • I think this is terrible. Especially when some media outlets are reporting that ‘the police have said they briefly interviewed the man and the incident was not politically, religiously or ideologically motivated.’ If this as a LGTB organization that was attacked, it will be all over the media and protest for governments to call this a hate crime!

  • What Mandy said!! Seriously? Not politically or religiously motivated? We need to pray that the police will not be intimidated by those who would want to stamp out Christianity. Blessings to you and your family Bill.

  • I just looked up this story on the ABC news facebook page, and I can’t believe the comments I am reading. Along the lines of, “This is deserved, the ACL are against free speech, ram their beliefs down our throats, they are hypocrites who post hate speech etc”, even, “I bet they staged this for publicity or sympathy”. I am paraphrasing of course, but this is the general gist.
    I’m just gobsmacked. Absolutely gobsmacked.
    And sick and tired of Christians being persecuted for our beliefs.
    As Carl said, if this was a LGBT organization, or a Muslim organization, we would never hear the end of it.
    We need to speak up and shine the light on this double standard.

  • ” not politically, religiously or ideologically motivated”? Yes, pull the other leg, you’ll hear Jingle Bells. What other motivations are there for this type of thing.

    Will be interesting to see if the perp was an islamist or someone of the left. How ironic if we now have a non-islamic terrorist attack committed not by some ‘red-neck, Nazi, Facist, extreme-right nutter’, but by someone of the compassionate, peace-loving Left.

    My prayers to Lyle Shelton and all the ACL staff. Thank God no one was injured.

  • Hi Bill, ACL’s front door is a long way back from the road. A very convenient accident, indeed.

    Who ‘delivers’ gas bottles at 9:30pm, anyway? Where else could have a gas-bottle laden van been headed at that time of night?

    Prayers to Lyle and his team.

  • If it is true that the “Thought police” say it is not a politically motivated, ideologically motivated, or religiously motivated attack, then maybe the police would like to enlighten us as to “what sort of attack it was”, because it certainly was not an “accident”.
    People, please read between the lines: The police know what is was and it too close to home for comfort, so they need the spin doctors to brief them before they make any more statements.

  • Thank you Bill for reporting this so promptly. The police statement does feel a lot like a political move akin to saying – “move along there is nothing to see here”.

    It is the certainty of the statement that makes it more doubtful – not that they don’t believe it is ideological at this stage but they have established this as a fact. Part of the quote from the official police statement reported in the Herald Sun: “…And part of these investigations will be to understand the motivation but as a result of our conversations with the male driver of the vehicle, we have established that the actions of this individual are not politically, religiously or ideologically motivated.”

    We will have to wait and see what the outcome is of the investigation but is it really likely a claim of certainty can be made at this stage without a thorough investigation?

    God be with you too Bill and your family as you contine to stand for truth.

  • Thanks guys.
    “ACT police confirmed a 35-year-old Canberra man had ignited gas cylinders in the van and caused an explosion, which damaged the vehicle and building.”
    OK, so how many tens of thousands of building are there in Canberra, and the driver just happened to park outside of the ACL? Sure, we can buy that. If you buy that, I have some refrigerators you can sell to the Eskimos as well.

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-12-22/australian-christian-lobby-headquarters-rammed-by-burning-van/8140804

  • The whole thing gets more bizarre with the quick police statement. Said Lyle Shelton:

    ““While obviously I have deep respect for the police and the job they do, I’m not convinced you can come to that conclusion so quickly. There are just too many coincidences.”

    “If this guy’s sole aim was just to blow himself up, why did he do it parked adjacent underneath my office in the ACL carpark? This is a dimly lit part of Deakin. It’s not on any main road. If this was some random thing you’d be down a paddock somewhere or out in the middle of a carpark — why here? Why at the ACL office with multiple gas cylinders loaded up in your van? It just doesn’t make sense to me.”

    “When I questioned them (the police) on the phone they said ‘of course you can’t unequivocally rule out that this was a targeted attack’ but they have come to this conclusion nonetheless.”

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/van-rams-australian-christian-lobby-office-in-canberra/news-story/b69a0c77a2e46e0b16bf804f5671c114?nk=44fa4c43739d71069231ad4239c16773-1482379609

  • Hi Bill, on a more positive note, maybe this sickening attack on the A.C.L. in Canberra, will cause a spike in community interest. Maybe we all can start praying that there will be multiple opportunities for the True Meaning of Christmas to be shared. If it makes more people receptive to the Gospel Message and eventually accepting The Lord Jesus as their Saviour, then let’s aim for that. Regards, Kel.

  • Who pays for the damage? Probably around $500k if the building is seriously damaged.
    Phil

  • I will try harder to remember to pray for protection for you Bill and Lyle. You are very courageous people.

  • Many thanks Rob. Yes prayers are so very much needed and appreciated.

  • To say this was “not politically, religiously or ideologically motivated” is ignorant and naive. I admire Lyle’s attitude when he asks us to pray for the person responsible as “Our Lord commands us to love our enemies and to pray for them.” We need to keep Lyle and everyone involved in our prayers too and as Lyle says, to thank God that none of the ACL staff or building occupants were injured. This seems to be a spiritual attack and those concerned must find what the ACL stands for a threat. This is a most cowardly act and should not be tolerated in my humble opinion. While we should pray for our enemies we can also take a stand against such things happening and say that we don’t agree and that it’s not on! If the shoe had been on the other foot there would have been an uproar! We as Christians have God on our side and He is stronger than any other force. Let’s be brave and stand with ACL as a united group of Christians.

  • Yes Anne. Imagine if the very same thing had happened at an ABC office. There would be shouts of conservative Christians being involved, and calls for churches to be monitored, etc. But when it happened to the ACL, it just happened – for no particular reason! It musta been an accident!

  • I hope and pray this will begin to turn public opinion against the LGBTIQ PC insanity.

  • Grim times indeed.

  • By the looks of the photo, the van doesn’t even have a registration plate. Another suspicious aspect of this apparently “random incident”. One can only wait to see what else the ABC et al will come up with next to explain away this event!

  • Accident? Yeah right! Not politically or religiously motivated? Sure!

    Anyone who frequents Bill’s site, will see this for what it is; an attack on Christian values and free speech. As many have said, thank God no one was in the building.

    Even though we need to keep trying, don’t expect the MSM indoctrinated sheep to view this as we do. Their moral compass has been conditioned to believe such ridiculous media spin.

    What will it take for them to see the truth, Christians gunned down in churches? Oh wait, that’s happening all the time! Christians gunned down or blown up in Australia? Maybe then. I fear that this is indeed what’s coming. Sadly, I believe the rubbish, hateful, gleeful, celebratory gnashing of teeth by the tolerant left will on display when it does.

    May God open their eyes to the truth and indeed strengthen his church.

  • The fact that the A.C.T. police would come to such a quick conclusion is very suspicious. We know the public service in the A.C.T is corrupt by the people they vote into the A.C.T. parliament. I sincerely hope this is not reflected in the A.C.T. police force.

  • It managed a few column inches on page 17 of today’s Brisbane Courier Mail.
    They knew about this yesterday.
    It’s a bombing! If it was the Greens’ HQ there would be front page photos and outrage.
    How can the ACT Police be so casual about it?

  • From 7:00 pm last night through until this morning, law enforcement agencies were rounding up terrorists here in the Northern Suburbs of Melbourne who were intent on causing mayhem on Christmas Day at St Paul’s Cathederal and Federation Square as well as other well known sites. Yet some “poor little driver ” in an apparently unregistered van full of gas bottles who “accidentally” stopped at the A.C.L. offices in Canberra and “accidentally” fire bombed them is not worthy of any serious investigation by the Federal Authorities. WELL, WELL, WELL, LADIES & GENTLEMEN, WELCOME TO THE REAL AUSTRALIA !!! Bill, at least we know how Christians are regarded in this country. Sorry for all the sarcasm, Kel.

  • Interestingly when the CFMEU building in Melbourne was shot at on Wednesday it was a ‘”concerning and dangerous” attack’ and ‘”This is obviously a fairly specifically targeted type situation,” he said “A person has come here with a specific reason and specific intent.”‘ yet with ACL it’s just random.

    http://www.sbs.com.au/news/article/2016/12/21/cfmeu-hq-shot-melbourne

  • Yes quite right Adrian.

  • Bombing civilian society wasn’t a smart move. It is taken very very seriously.

    If there is a second ‘attack’ then the suspect’s mates haven’t been infiltrated or investigated – or it’s someone else.

    Either way, I wouldn’t like to be a gay activist as paranoia breaks down friendships, and does a few other things, and the police are usually very good at their jobs. I’d like to also thank the police for not talking the matter up, which was probably the motive, given that the govt is not any time soon granting may garage.

    Merry Christmas everyone and a special thanks to you Bill, enjoy your Christmas and New Year. God Bless.

  • Thanks for this article.

    Is it concerning that most of the media have been silent about looking into why this attack happened. I did hear some discussion on AM radio last week, but little else.

  • Apart from the most powerful action we can take, that is pray, we can make sure this news is spread as far and as wide as possible using whatever social media platforms we use. Might I humbly suggest finding this news via the Caleb Report, as there are images and links provided there to spread this news through Pinterest and other social media.

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