In an interview with the Sydney Morning Herald outside his church on Sunday, Israel Folau refused to walk back the homophobic comments that got him fired from both the Australian national rugby team and the New South Wales Waratahs.
Folau had tweeted out that “drunks, homosexuals, adulterers, liars, fornicators, thieves, atheists and idolaters” will all go to hell unless they repent.
Both Rugby Australia and New South Wales Rugby swiftly announced that they would no longer work with Folau following his comments.
Asked if he regretted saying homosexuals will go to hell, Folau told the Herald: “Absolutely not. I’ll stand on what the Bible says. I share it with love.
“I can see the other side of the coin where people’s reactions are the total opposite to how I’m sharing it.”
“I can’t change what the word of God says.”
He added he was prepared to quit the sport altogether if he had to: “It’s obviously a decision that’s in the process right now but I believe in a God that’s in control of all things.
“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.”