Israel Folau says gay marriage and abortion to blame for bushfires

Homophobic rugby star Israel Folau has blamed Australia's lethal bushfires on gay marriage and abortion.

The former Wallaby - dropped over previous comments against the LGBTQ community - told churchgoers in Sydney on Sunday it was not a coincidence New South Wales was on fire after Australia legalised same-sex marriage in 2017.

"I've been looking around at the events that's been happening in Australia this past couple of weeks with all the natural disasters, the bushfires, the droughts and all these things that are currently happening," Folau said, 7 News reported.

"I'm doing this out of love for people to be able to hear this message and receive it with open hearts... I am speaking to Australia - they have changed this law and changed the ordinance.

"They have changed that law and legalised same-sex marriage and now those things are okay in society, going against the laws of what God says.

"Abortion - it's okay now to murder and kill infants, unborn children, and they deem that to be okay.

"This scripture is speaking to Australia. You have changed the law and changed the ordinance. Look how rapid these bushfires, these droughts, all these things that came in a short period of time.

"You think it's a coincidence or not? God is speaking to you guys, Australia, you need to repent and you need to take these laws and turn it back to following what is right by God, what God says in his word."

Folau, 30, didn't explain why it took two years for his God to punish New South Wales. Four people have died in the blazes so far, which have spread to neighbouring Queensland.

Folau, who asked fans to financially back his legal battle against sporting authorities despite owning millions in property, said the fires were "only a little taste of what God's judgment is like".

"The news now are saying that these bushfires are the worst they've ever seen in Australia - they haven't even seen anything."

While bushfires are a common sight in Australia, scientists say they're getting worse due to the effects of climate change - not gay marriage. 

Folau was dropped by Rugby Australia earlier this year after he made a social media post saying "Drunks, homosexuals, adulterers, Liars, fornicators, thieves, atheists [and] idolators" would go to hell unless they repented. 

His crowdfunding campaign on GoFundMe was shut down for breaking the site's rules against promotion of discrimination. A Christian group later raised $2 million for him.

Folau is currently taking Rugby Australia to court, saying it was illegal to terminate his contract over his religious beliefs.