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Thank God for the New Zealand Anti Terrorist Squad: Online

October 16th, 2016 by Matt

Matt’s article is available at this link flannagan-pc-18-1

Permission has been granted from the Editor of Philosophia Christi to upload this contribution. Learn more about the journal by going to

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“Thank God for the New Zealand Anti Terrorist Squad” Published

October 6th, 2016 by Matt

At last years the conference of the American Academy of Religion I participated in a panel discussion on the topic “Just War as Deterrence Against Terrorism”.

The papers from this symposium have now been published in issue 18: 21 of Philosophia Christi

The abstract to my article “Thank God for the New Zealand Anti-Terrorist Squad” is as follows:

On November 14 1990 David Gray’s 22 hour shooting spree ended when the New Zealand Anti-terrorist squad (ATS) shot Gray dead. In this paper I argue that Christians should support the existence of state agencies like the ATS who are authorized to use lethal force. Alongside the duty we as Christians have to love our neighbors, live at peace with others and to not repay evil for evil, God has authorized the government to use force when necessary to uphold a just peace within the geographical area over which it has jurisdiction.

This panel involved contributions from  Paul Copan, Myles Werntz, Gregory Boyd, Keith Pavlischek, and J. Daryl Charles and consquently contained an interesting mix of pacifists and just war theorists.

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Matt’s Sermons at Takanini Community Church

September 19th, 2016 by Matt

Those who read MandM may be aware that I work as a teaching elder part time at Takanini Community Church. This involves me preparing and giving a lesson for the Takanini Community Church congregation every two weeks.

In case you’re interested, my sermons at Takanini can be found online here.  I have done a series on the book of Judges, Genesis, The book of Corinthians, The Psalms, and the book of Jonah, currently I am going through the gospel of Luke.

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Ed Feser reviews Jerry Coyne

July 7th, 2016 by Matt

Over at First Thing’s, Edward Feser has an interesting, but characteristically scathing review of Jerry Coyne’s  book Faith vs Fact: Why Religion and Science Are Incompatible.


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Video: The Smith-Flannagan Debate “Morality Does Not Need God”

July 6th, 2016 by Matt

On Wednesday 21st May at the University of Waikato retired Philosophy and Political science lecturer Dr Ron Smith and Dr Matthew Flannagan (of this blog) debated the resolution “Morality Does not need God”. Here is the video of that debate.


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Matt on “Divine Commands and the Canaanite Massacre” at Windsor Park Baptist Church

April 11th, 2016 by Matt

Matt’s talk “Divine Commands and the Canaanite Massacre” at Windsor Park Baptist, is  now available online. Matt’s talk was part of a series of talks hosted by “Reasons for Faith” an apologetics group based at Windsor Park Baptist Church.

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An Interesting Comparison

February 4th, 2016 by Matt

This from Occupy Democrats:


This from the Unites States Founding Fathers:

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security…

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor. (emphasis mine)

Oceania is at war with Eastasia. Oceania has always been at war with Eastasia.

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