Australian Rugby Star Gets Sacked, Multi-Million Dollar Contract Canceled, After Posting a Christian Message on Instagram
“I believe in a God that’s in control of all things. Whatever His will is, whether that’s to continue playing or not, I’m more than happy to do what He wants me to do.”
Australian star rugby player Israel “Izzy” Folau has done it again. He’s offended people by posting a Bible verse about sin and advising readers to repent. In 2018, Folau posted a similar message. This time, it cost him his multi-million dollar contract with Rugby Australia.
Earlier this month, Folau posted a statement on Instagram that is based on 1 Corinthians 6:9-10. It stated “Warning. Drunks, Homosexuals, Adulterers, Liars, Fornicators, Thieves, Atheists, Idolaters. Hell Awaits You. Repent! Only Jesus Saves.”
Offending LGBT Activists
Rugby AU CEO Raelene Castle said that there wasn’t a specific clause in his contract but that Folau knew he wasn’t supposed to post Christian messages based on talks surrounding the year-old offense. “(There was no clause) within the contract but there was a number of documented meetings that were put in writing, both verbally and in writing, to Israel about our expectations,” she said. “It’s very disappointing from my perspective because I had a very direct and specific conversation with him about the expectations that I had,” she added. “He accepted that conversation, he said that he’d understood that conversation, he shook my hand at the end of that conversation, said he was very clear with it and yet he has gone off and done what he’s done.”
What he’s done is offended the gay community, both Castle and Folau’s coaches fear. Forget that the list included a whole host of sins. But Castle was quick to point out that they weren’t discriminating against Folau because of his religion. “This is not a religious discussion, this is a discussion around the employee, employer relationship and the values in the contractual arrangements within that agreement,” she said. “That’s on the basis on which we have served him a breach notice.”
AU Rugby issued a statement about terminating Folau’s multi-million dollar contract. “[Folau] had committed a high-level breach of the Professional Players’ Code of Conduct warranting termination of his employment contract.”
Although Folau loves the sport and wants to continue playing, he made it clear that Jesus Christ and his faith comes first. “First and foremost, I live for God now. Whatever He wants me to do, I believe His plans for me are better than whatever I can think. If that’s not to continue on playing, so be it.
“In saying that, obviously I love playing footy and if it goes down that path I’ll definitely miss it. But my faith in Jesus Christ is what comes first.