Australian rugby star Israel Folau has claimed that God's plans for gay people is "Hell".
Folau, who plays for Australian rugby team the Wallabies and has publicly opposed same-sex marriage, made the offensive remark on an Instagram post on Tuesday (April 3).
The sportsman posted a photo of a meme stating that God's plan for individuals wouldn't be easy, and follower Mike Sephton commented: "What was God's plan for gay people?"
Folau replied: "HELL... Unless they repent of their sins and turn to God."
The comments have since been deleted, Gay Star News reports.
Folau, a devout Christian, regularly posts religious messages on social media and came under fire last year after revealing he was opposed to same-sex marriageduring Australia's controversial postal survey on the issue.
A day after the same-sex marriage postal ballots were sent to voters in Australia, Folau wrote on Twitter: "I love and respect all people for who they are and their opinions. But personally, I will not support gay marriage."
Other members of the Wallabies team had expressed support for equal marriage and Folau's comments put him at odds with other players including team captain Michael Hooper.
Meanwhile, Welsh former rugby star Gareth Thomas, who came out as gay in 2009, has already hit back at Folau's latest comments on Twitter, asking: "What's [God's] plan for you then?"