Statement #1 “The true love of Christ is to seek and save the lost not worry about immigration laws. I am a conservative religious Christian woman who loves humankind no matter the color or creed. The church I attended in *** actively helped many Hispanics with visas and citizenship. I housed many in my home. That’s the kind of love we need to promote. I don’t like that people are going to be deported but I also don’t understand why after 30 years he…a current illegal facing possible deportation and separation from his family…hasn’t become a citizen. I don’t think we have all the facts we need.
My heart breaks…but I wonder…does he know Jesus?”
This final excerpt from my conversation is the key. My friend has it right on so many levels.
We don’t have all the facts.
It is completely possible to be an illegal in America for 30 years and be doing all the “right” things legally to be in America “legally.” The system we have in place for becoming a legal citizen is a topic which many if not most Americans are largely ignorant and misinformed about. There is so much bureaucracy and red tape from our government in conjunction with the governments of the specific country an alien was born in that the process is expensive and muddied at best. Anyone who has ever had to deal with governmental red tape should be able to understand this point.
She has it right when she attended a Christian community that actively worked…put boots on the ground…to help aliens and foreigners obtain visas and citizenship while meeting their current immediate physical needs as well.
She had it right when she opened her home to those who needed a safe godly place to stay and rest.
She has it right when she says her heart breaks for them and her concern is about their spiritual state. Our hearts should break for people especially those without Christ. Our first thought when meeting others or discussing their lives and future should be “Do they know Jesus not are they legal and paying taxes?”
But does she have it right when she says that the true love of Christ is to seek and save the lost and not worry about immigration law?
We, believers that is, are Kingdom citizens first and American second. How we conduct our lives and how we treat others should be guided by the laws Heaven. The key theme in the scriptural treatment of aliens; the command from God is to REMEMBER that you were once an alien.
Remember so that you will have compassion.
Our compassion must guide our actions.
A nation in which the believers ability to have compassion on another human being comes second to their desire to protect the foreign land, in this case America, in which they reside is not a nation under God. It is a nation doomed to suffer God’s judgement.
In placing our loyalty for America above our loyalty to the Kingdom of Heaven we have made an idol of America. The proof of our misplaced loyalty can be seen in the vast amounts of knowledge whether factual or pseudo we will gain and converse about on the topic of immigration in America contrasted with the gross deficit of scriptural or spiritual knowledge or information also contained in those same conversations.
God will not bless a people who have put a false god in His place. How we live in America as Kingdom citizens is important. What we do sends a message both to those watching and to God about our loyalty and about our King.
The spiritual as stated before has a very real effect on the physical and the physical has a very real effect on the spiritual; the two cannot be separated. As such Christians should worry about immigration laws in their effort to seek and to save the lost. We should be concerned with such laws because God is. If we do not know the laws that were laid out that govern the Kingdom of Heaven and the people of God in greater detail than we assume to know the laws that govern our physical country of residence then how can we say our loyalty is with the Kingdom of Heaven or the people of God?
Throughout scripture time and time again we see Christ meeting the physical needs of the lost in order to open the door of opportunity for using the meeting of this physical need to teach them of their spiritual need for salvation. In being able to meet the physical need He proves that He is also able to meet the spiritual.
It is a powerless God who claims to be able to meet the spiritual need but is impotent to meet the temporal physical need of a person for if He has no sway over physical oppression what makes us think He could possibly hold sway over the spiritual? Believers as Kingdom citizens are to be His emissaries in protecting, enabling prosperity, and meeting the physical needs of others. After all that is the job of an emissary.
What most Christian Americans may not realize is that becoming a citizen of the United States of American is not an easy task. It isn’t as simple as filling out the right paperwork properly. It is a process of filling out the right paperwork…properly…multiple forms….at the right times, providing the right documentation from your country of origin which means you are at the mercy of the bureaucratic red tape of two countries, meeting income requirements which most Americans I dare say could not meet on a single income and paying substantial non-refundable fees time and time again. There is more to it than meets the eye and more to it than the average American citizen realizes.
We do not have all the facts so let’s stop acting and thinking as though we do. Rather than pass judgement in defense of American ideals we should love the alien as we love ourselves and extend compassion in an effort to win them to Christ. Walk a mile in their shoes to gain some understanding or at the very least have conversations in which you go to listen and learn not to argue your point or defend America.
We as American believers are among the richest people on earth. Even the poor among us have more than many of the poor worldwide; the alien. We were not given citizenship in American by God to lord it over others or live comfortably but to use it to help them. There are churches and organizations who are reaching out to help the alien obtain citizenship. There are believers who are modeling the sacrifice of Christ to the alien in an effort to win them to Christ but more are needed.
We as believers are called to do justice, love mercy and walk humbly. God considers the alien defenseless like He does the fatherless and the widow.
It doesn’t matter if it is intentional or out of ignorance He will not tolerate His children oppressing the defenseless.
He desires that His children honor His name by defending them both spiritually and physically. Our allegiance should be to Christ and our Heavenly home first and America second.
REMEMBER….you were once a foreigner and an alien. Do you remember what life was like before Christ; your horrible, truly hopeless state? Or have you gotten comfortable in your eternal security and forgotten where you came from?
Someone gave up their power and riches so that you would be able to obtain citizenship. Please don’t be mistaken, what Christ did for you in giving up His throne, power and authority to be born as a baby and live and die as a man was a very real physical act. He met your need in the physical realm just as much as He did in the spiritual. Believers are called to do no less. In fact Christ tells us in scripture that through his power we can and should do more and greater things.
God is not silent on the issue of immigration and the alien as so many might believe. We can clearly see He has quite a bit to say on the topic. And a command to all believers to:
REMEMBER…who you once were, who you are and how it was obtained for you.
You have earned and deserve nothing more than anyone else. Your American citizenship was given to you by God to be used as a tool to rescue the oppressed and suffering. You are called to actively use what you have been given for God’s glory not your own and not America’s.
REMEMBER…You were once an alien without hope and excluded. You were once a citizen of a dangerous and oppressive government but now you are free!
REMEMBER…so that you will have compassion.
REMEMBER…Christ’s sacrifice for you was a very real physical sacrifice. He has enabled you through His power to make such sacrifices for others in His stead.
REMEMBER…the nation you belong to and the laws that govern it. These come first before America. America is not the Kingdom of God and it is not your home.
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