Aurukun pastor says beer trucks introduced darkest decade in the history of Aurukun

[Herbert Yunkaporta, a local pastor at Aurukun, Queensland.]

In 1985, the Queensland government forced the imposition of a wet canteen at Aurukun against the vehement objection of elders.

Within a decade, homicides, non-existent at Aurukun during much of the mission era, had risen exponentially, and suicides were not far behind.

He vividly remembers … the day that alcohol came to Aurukun [1985].

“The memory is so clear to me,” Herbert says.

“We were walking down to the river to have a swim, and we saw these trucks come in laden with pallets of beer stacked up. We just stood there in silence, in amazement, just speechless.”

The wet canteen adjoined the park and was surrounded by a fence, but it didn’t stop young people breaking the rules.

“I remember seeing a boy who was my age actually put a hole through a fence and suck on a beer from a jug,” Herbert says.

“This is where I believe that Aurukun started nosediving down. That next decade alone was the darkest decade in the history of Aurukun.”

Natasha Robinson, “‘Aurukun needs to be awakened’: Local pastor hopes town at ‘turning point’ after difficult past”, ABC News, 27 May 2016

Judges 9:13 grapes “tirosh” cheer God and men

“But the vine said to them, ‘Shall I leave my TIROSH [grapes] that cheers God and men and go hold sway over the trees?’” (Judges 9:13)

Tirosh – Grapes (Micah 6:15)

See the meaning of tirosh, as one “…shall tread grapes (tirosh), but not drink wine (yayin).” (Micah 6:15 ESV) Unfermented grape juice in Isaiah 16:10 was indeed within the meaning of yayin – and in Proverbs 23:29-35 alcoholic wine was also within the meaning of yayin. The vine itself simply has solid grapes, namely tirosh in Hebrew.

Continue reading “Judges 9:13 grapes “tirosh” cheer God and men”

Alcohol available means violence available

“It is well-established that increases in the availability of alcohol contributes to increases in alcohol-related violence.
Research in Melbourne has found that there is a strong association between family violence and the concentration of off licence (packaged or take-away liquor outlets in an area. The study concluded that a ten per cent increase in off-licence liquor outlets is associated with a 3.3 per cent increase in family violence. Increases in family violence were also apparent with the increase in general (pub) licences and on-premise licences. In Western Australia, a study concluded that for every 10,000 additional litres of pure alcohol sold at an off-licence liquor outlet, the risk of violence experienced in a residential setting increased by 26 per cent.”

“There is also some research demonstrating the effects of changes to trading hours on family violence specifically. An evaluation of interventions in Tennant Creek, Northern Territory (NT) found that restricted hotel opening hours and restrictions on take-away sales on Thursdays led to a decline in admission to women’s refuges.

FARE, ‘National framework for action to prevent alcohol-related family violence’, June 2015, page 17.

Jesus no drinker at Last Supper nor at Calvary

“Seven days ye eat unleavened things; only—in the first day ye cause leaven to cease out of your houses; for any one eating anything fermented from the first day till the seventh day, even that person hath been cut off from Israel.” (Exodus 12:15, Young’s Literal Translation)

The Last Supper was after preparations for the Passover and Feast of Unleavened Things. No leaven was in the upper room! (See Exodus 12:15,19.) Unleavened bread, etc. has symbolic meaning at this feast. Yeast is absolutely excluded. But refusing alcoholic drinks always has practical benefits: so that you can distinguish between the holy and unholy (Leviticus 10:10).

Let’s look at the Greek words at the Last Supper, at the beginning of the crucifixion, and finally at the end of the crucifixion:

1. At the Last Supper: none of the gospels use the word wine (oinos). He gave “the fruit of the vine” (gennematos tes ampelou) at the Last Supper (Matt. 26:29; Mark 14:25; Luke 22:18).

2. At the beginning of the crucifixion: Jesus refused the vinegar (oxos) that was mixed with poison (chole) (Matt 27:34). Like Matthew 27:34, the Septuagint also says both chole and oxos in Psalm 69:21. Luke 23:36 says vinegar (oxos). Mark 15:23 says Jesus refused wine that had bitterness (oinos smurnizo) at the beginning of the crucifixion. Mark’s gospel does not later repeat the term “oinos smurnizo” – nor even wine (oinos).

3. Later, near the end of the crucifixion: Jesus accepted plain vinegar (oxos) when He said, “I thirst”. John 19:29-30 says vinegar (oxos). Matt 27:48 and Mark 15:36 also say vinegar (oxos) not wine (oinos). This time it was not mixed with poison. So this time He accepted plain vinegar.

Continue reading “Jesus no drinker at Last Supper nor at Calvary”

Basil Wilberforce – Anglican Canon fought evils of alcohol

Canon Basil Wilberforce (1841-1916)

Canon Basil Wilberforce

“Basil Wilberforce was born in Winchester in 1841, the son of Samuel Wilberforce, the famous Church of England bishop and anti-Darwinian. Queen Victoria was one of Basil’s godparents. He trained for a career in the church and in 1871 became rector of St Mary’s Church in Southampton. While in Southampton he campaigned nationally and locally against the evils of alcoholic drink. As an alternative to the public house he founded a Church of England Young Men’s Association (YMA) in the town.

Wilberforce, Canon Albert Basil Orme”, Sotonopedia, The A-Z of Southampton’s History

“A much more serious development of Wilberforce’s teetotal zeal was his desire to introduce unfermented wine into the celebration of the Holy Communion.”

George W. E. Russell, 1917, “Basil Wilberforce, a memoir”

[See also: The advantages of unfermented grape juice for the Lord’s Supper]

Albert Basil Orme Wilberforce (b. 1841) was appointed canon residentiary of Westminster in 1894, chaplain of the House of Commons in 1896 and archdeacon of Westminster in 1900; he has published several volumes of sermons.

Samuel Wilberforce, Encyclopedia Britannica (1911)

WCTU: first woman to serve as mayor in USA history

Susanna M. Salter

Mrs. Susanna Madora Salter was the first woman to serve as a mayor in the USA. Oddly, she had not even intended to run for office – though she was politically active for the prohibition of alcohol. Certain anti-prohibition men who opposed her put forward her name, but merely to mock the women of the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union.

Yet to their surprise, she was elected! In 1887 she became the first woman in USA history to serve a term as mayor. (She did not seek a second term as mayor of Argonia.)

Argonia, Kansas was a town of Quaker background. The Quakers had long supported women preaching Biblically – like the prophetess Huldah who preached to males (2 Kings 22:8-20) and the prophetess Deborah who judged Israel (Judges 4-5).
My son, keep your father’s command, And do not forsake the law of your mother.” (Proverbs 6:20)

Susana Salter of Woman’s Christian Temperance Union :
first woman to serve as mayor in USA history

Daniel Afu, Tongan Wesleyan Mission to Fiji

DANIEL AFU (Fiji, 1873)

In our Fijian Mission there are new 634 chapels and 354 other preaching places, making in all 988, or nearly a thousand pulpits to supply every Sunday. What are called our paid agents in Fiji, are paid by the Fijian Churches and not by the Missionary Society. It is a principle in our Fijian Mission to make this native agency self-sustaining. In addition to a large number of local preachers, who are called “unpaid agents,” we have 883 catechists and 52 Native Ministers, who “preach the Word” in the Fijian tongue. God has greatly blessed these native preachers and given them fruit to their labours. In our Class Meetings and Lovefeasts it is astonishing to find how many attribute their conversion instrumentally, to the sermons of native preachers.  They have great power in sympathy, in local illustration, and can follow the Fijian mind in all its twistings. They are generally fluent and impassioned speakers; and after careful training become “workmen that do not need to be ashamed,” –and of whom we, as a Church, have no need to be ashamed, “rightly dividing the Word of Life.”

Daniel Afu, whose portrait is given you in this number, is one of the best of our native ministers in Fiji. He was ordained nearly ten years ago, and had long been useful as a catechist, before he entered the ranks of the ministry. He is a Tongan by birth, and is one of many Friendly Islanders that live and labour for the salvation of Fiji. He is a strong advocate of total abstinence from intoxicating liquors; and would condemn smoking by a Missionary in the most polite and gentlemanly manner, but as boldly as he would condemn it in young native local preachers. He is frank and fearless; and on hearing that some brandy had been shipped on the “John Wesley” he protested at the District Meeting against the Mission Ship being made “unclean.” On hearing the explanation, that the brandy was part of the baggage of one of the passengers, he said, “If the Mission Ship cannot bring passengers without such baggage, let both passengers and their baggage be left to other ships, and keep our own ship clean of that which is the curse of Fiji.” The Committee in Sydney respected the bold protest of the native Minister, and the captain of the “John Wesley” received instructions to allow no spirits to be taken on board the Mission Ship as freight or passengers’ luggage. Daniel has always been a leading spirit among our native agents, and happy is the Missionary who has Daniel for a colleague. He will see that the instructions of the Missionary are carried out in every school and chapel in the Circuit. He is what is often called a “generally useful,” man. He can preach a good sermon, or steer a canoe through a difficult passage. He can give a lesson clearly in the school or do the work of the architect and builder combined in building and beautifying our large new churches. Some of the best native churches in Fiji were built under his supervision. He is in his day-school or teaching dress in the portrait given. He has a powerful voice and his appearance gives you the idea of combined mental and physical strength. He is now stationed at Rewa, where he has been very successful.

Daniel Afu, The Wesleyan Juvenile Offering, Vol. 7, 1873, p. 114-116.

Background: In the 1830s, Tonga had undergone a Christian revival. Tonga was now sending Christian missionaries out to surrounding nations – like Daniel Afu to Fiji.

The Lord rescued drover Richard Jakamarra ‘blind’ drunk to see the Lord’s goodness

“I turned away from the Lord because grog was available. I became an alcoholic. I knew that I was doing wrong things, and I’ve done wrong things in my life, but I couldn’t stop. I tried to give up the drink many times, in my own strength, but I couldn’t do it. I was a slave to alcohol. I had jobs – droving and in the army – but I couldn’t keep them down. It was a big problem.”

In one night of drinking, a home intruder attempted to kill Richard and he almost died. He could not defend himself properly. The Royal Flying Doctors airlifted Richard to Alice Springs Hospital.

“While I was lying there, all those things that I’d heard in Sunday School came flooding back to me. I knew about the Lord, and I knew what would have happened if I’d died. I was that far away from the Lord. But it was there that the Lord began to touch my life. He began to speak to me… ”

“I gave my life to the Lord, and everything changed from then – the grog, the work, everything. ”

“I had no desire to drink anymore, ever again. It was good.”

“But then two years later, in 1986, I went blind…. I can’t preach anymore, so I’m no use to anyone. It’s all over. That’s what I thought.”

“From the beginning, my favourite Bible verse was Proverbs 3:5-6. It says, ‘Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him and he will make your paths straight.’ I first read that Bible verse after I lost my sight. It helped me more than anything. It helped me cope with the blindness. Lean not on your own understanding, it says. ”

“We both smiled as Richard talked, and later that evening, as I said goodbye, I thanked him for the glimpse into his quiet, humble story, lived out in the red dust of central Australia. He wasn’t waving a big flag, saying look at me. He has been just looking to the Lord daily, and memorising Bible verses, and blessing his people, for decades. It made me want to do the same. ”

Naomi Reed, 6 Sep. 2018, Eternity News, “I was a slave to alcohol”