How to respond to immigration?
Malachi 3:5, “5 “Then I will draw near to you for judgment; and I will be a swift witness against the sorcerers and against the adulterers and against those who swear falsely, and against those who oppress the wage earner in his wages, the widow and the orphan, and those who turn aside the alien and do not fear Me,” says the Lord of hosts.”
Immigration is a popular topic in our culture today. There are two topics that need to be held in tension when you hear people talk about immigration; love and law.
There is a love and compassion for people. The people in Malachi 3 are being rebuked by the God of Scripture because they are neglecting to care for those who are vulnerable, including the immigrant.
But, also, there is a tension of law and order, a divine responsibility given to government described in Romans 13, “1 Every person is to be in subjection to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those which exist are established by God.”
In the United States of America there laws established by our government to control our borders, and when someone neglects to hold those laws in tension in the conversation around immigration it is going to make it very hard for us to understand each other.
When we talk about immigration with our friends and family and we neglect to express a value for both law and love we are going to have a hard time understanding one another as a country. We are just going to lob grenades of love like, “Don’t you care about people?” and grenades of law, “Don’t you care about order?” We won’t make any progress in listening and understanding one another.
Now, lets take a minute to look inward a little bit. If you are a person who is passionate about the laws of our land, and at the same time proclaiming the name of Jesus, then by God’s grace through the power of the Spirit you want to be tirelessly looking for opportunities to express a love for immigrants.
I am not talking just a financial donation here or there, but instead you are actively looking for opportunities to tangibly express your concern for those who are marginalized in our culture today. Surely you see how it would be incongruent to proclaim the gift of eternal life you have in Jesus Christ while people are literally struggling to find food.
At the same time, if you are a person who is passionate about love and compassion for immigrants, and if you are reciting the Scriptures that proclaim God’s care for the immigrant in Leviticus, Deuteronomy, Exodus, Psalms, Zechariah, Malachi, Matthew, Romans, 1 Timothy, and Hebrews, then you also, by God’s grace through the Spirit, must be tirelessly looking for opportunities to express love for immigrants in tangible ways.
Surely you see how it appears self-righteous for you to condemn the apathy of our government, or our culture while at the same time sitting on the comforts of your couch watching Netflix.
So that all of us together in the body of Christ would be sharpening one another in our commitment to God’s Word, and at the same time seeing our love for God stir up a deep and sincere love for one another.
If you aren’t sure where to start you can join us at North Village Church. We are partnering with Pillow Elementary to read to kindergartners, help with festivals, and serve their teachers. There are always plenty of opportunities.