Christian Infidelity in Politics
For those that know me personally, it would not be surprising for me to post something about politics. However, after a promise made to a friend of mine, I will cover it from a completely different perspective.
As some would be aware, the sitting member for Parramatta, Ross Cameron, admitted he was an adulterer. Now to those not "in the know", you would not be suprised at this in the slightest. After all, from all accounts I have heard, Canberra is best known to visitors for the national Parliament and also a large number of brothels (coincidence?). The point I'm making is that politicians are usually a very sleazy bunch, with a few notable exceptions.
However, Ross Cameron happens to be the convenor of a Bible Study in Parliament which attracts the most conservative types of Christians, be they Anglicans, Catholics or Pentecostals.
Not only that, but Ross Cameron has attached his family to his occupation; they have been inseparable.
So when I read in the Sydney Morning Herald, Good Weekend, in a four or five page article, a confession by Ross of his infidelity, I was taken aback. From all accounts I have heard, this man was the pinup boy for every "bible-believing" Christian with an interest in politics. His unashamed use of orthodox Christian ideals in his speeches, discussions and discourse was often breathtaking.
There was no apparent reason for him admitting the affair. The Canberra press gallery had known of his infidelity for almost six months without mentioning it in the press. No one opposed to Christian ideals, like Bob Brown of the Greens, used this as an excuse to call Ross Cameron a hypocrite. His wife wasn't threatening to leave him (from all accounts). He represents a very marginal electorate where his majority over the Labor party is 1.2% (very slim indeed).
The result of his admission is that internal Liberal polling probably sees Ross Cameron being left out Parliament in the next sitting. Labor have commented that their polling sees Ross Cameron being a lost cause for the Liberals. Latest reports (in the Sydney Morning Herald today) indicate that Ross has moved out of Oatlands home, his credibility as a moral crusader is gone, his credibility in the public eye for being a Christian is gone. Some of his close friends feel he has betrayed their trust.
Now, after my initial reaction of shock, I thought: hang on! What's going on here? I couldn't make sense of this admission. Is this self-pity or could it be a genuine desire for forgiveness?
I decided that the best course of action was prayer for him and his wife and children. Betraying the trust of ones wife is not the easiest thing to repair. Disallusioned supporters are not easy to win over again. Ross Cameron needed all the prayer one could muster.
I happened to come across him one evening as I was walking down Church Street Mall. He looked very tired, there was no bounce in his step...I think he is deeply ashamed of his actions. In one deft admission, he has rendered half of his persona useless to those around him.
Prior to his admission, he bounced around the offices of MP's that he had heard had personal problems. His care for their hurt and pain was noticed and appreciated by both sides of politics. Now this active Christian carer and bible study leader was reduced to the tag "hypocrite". This label is mild in comparison with the adjective that "The Chaser" used to describe him.
He has said publicly that he doesn't care whether he wins or loses this election. He has said he only wants his family to hold together. I hope and pray that above all else, he will believe in God's ability to pardon all sin accompanied by sincere repentence. I pray that he will rebuild a life with his wife Genevieve and that his kids will grow up knowing that their dad did what all God-fearing Christians should do: repent and pray for the forgiveness of those who were wronged and making amends.
For us, this should serve as a warning that our lives should be in the words of Paul be "above reproach" (Titus 1:7) and Titus 2:7-8:
Show yourself in all respects to be a model of good works, and in your teaching show integrity, dignity, and sound speech that cannot be condemned, so that an opponent may be put to shame, having nothing evil to say about us.I would suggest that those who love the Lord Jesus Christ, pray for him also.