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[COMMENT: Thanks be to God for the piece below, which
gives the start of a full-blown Biblical response to the immigration fiasco.
A fellow in the crountry writes:
So, I was in church this past Sabbath and we had a visitor- a fellow in all black with a white collar in the front. Interesting, considering we're not anything resembling a mainline denomination church. After services, we always have a time of fellowship and food. I sat at the table where this fellow was sitting because I wanted to find out who he is.
Turns out he's a Catholic priest of Italian origin who speaks Spanish. Then my pastor comes over and sits down next to us and tells me that he has a ministry. He has two brothers who help people in Guatemala and El Salvador come to the United States illegally, and then he finds them shelter and work once they're here. Oh yeah, he prefers the term, "undocumented."
I listened quietly and fought the urge to let my facial expression betray my urge to vomit...in his general direction. I turned to the priest and asked him how he gets around Ro. 13:1-4. In return, I got a blank stare. Realizing that he wasn't familiar with the address, I refreshed his memory about Paul saying that we are to obey the laws of the land (except when they outright contradict God's teachings). His response was, "I don't see anything wrong in what I'm doing." I told him that I understand that, but I would be interested in hearing how he justifies his actions in light of what Paul wrote at Ro. 13:1-4. Again, "I see nothing wrong in what I'm doing."
He then became a bit irate and began to lecture me on the horrible conditions of the people in third world countries, insinuating that I have never seen such, and how Jesus would help them. I listened patiently. My pastor interjected here that we are first and foremost citizens of the Kingdom of God, implying that helping people comes before man's laws.
My pastor knows that I spent four weeks living on the streets in Jakarta. He also knows that I refused to marry my current wife while she was here illegally. I would not marry her while she was in an ongoing state of sin. She went home, but then could not return because she had overstayed her visa. As a result of our faithfulness and trust in God, my wife and I now have awesome testimonies of how God intervened for us moving heaven and earth to get us married and then to bring us together; testimonies that truly give glory to God.
I informed the priest briefly about these things and then addressed my pastor's comment. I pointed out that, while we are to put God first in our lives, that does not mean that we neglect our wives. How do we know this? Because it's in the Word. Likewise, while we are first citizens of the Kingdom of Heaven, Paul tells us to obey the laws of the land. I then told the priest that I disagree as to whether what he is doing is good. He asked me how I could disagree.
I pointed out that what he is doing is giving them a fish instead of teaching them how to fish for themselves. He pointed out that he finds them jobs and said that this is teaching them how to fish. I asked him what he thought would happen if the United States flung wide its gates and let in every poor person around the globe who wanted to come in. He said the United States could handle it. I said the United States would become exactly what they left behind. I asked him if he had visited any of the once-decent neighborhoods in the Los Angeles area that are now dominated by illegal immigrants. Silence. I said that, in some cases, they have become worse slums than what you would see in Tijuana and other Mexican hell holes. So he asked me what my solution would be.
I told him these people coming here care nothing for American values; they only care about American dollars. He said he sees nothing wrong with that. I responded that American values include such ideas as liberty and responsibility, neither of which are present in any of the people coming here. I told him that what he should be doing to help these people is give them a dose of the scriptures and America's founding documents. Equip them with ideas and then send them home. He asked what good that would do in countries like theirs.
I pointed out that they had recently fielded several thousands of people to flood the streets of major cities around this country and that, if they can muster those kinds of numbers here, they could muster more in their own countries. I told him he should be equiping them to work for change in their own countries rather than coming here to simply turn this country into precisely what they left behind. He was clearly a bit angry at hearing this, but just said we'll have to agree to disagree. Fortunately, my pastor was quiet most of the time rather than trying to come to the aid of our guest.
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