Okay, so by now the realization of the Republican midterm election sweep has had time to sink in for both sides. The implications of this article’s title applies to both. President Obama has made it crystal clear that, regardless of who did well in the election, he plans to have his way on immigration before year’s end, and Republicans need to take a very sobering look at what that means in reality.
Before you start saying that I don’t care about “…the poor and the down trodden, those only yearning to be free…etc., etc.”, consider this. I, like most Americans, don’t hold it against anyone who desires a better life and works towards that goal – legally. It’s illegals I have a problem with. Doesn’t the word “illegal” even have any meaning any more? Illegals are criminals, pure and simple.
Ah, but what would Jesus do? For starters, I personally believe He’d obey the law. The Bible doesn’t speak on immigration as we know it. It does, however, have a lot to say regarding those who sojourn within your lands. Now the word “sojourn” is interesting. Found mostly in the Old Testament, sojourn means (according to the Merriam Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary): “a temporary stay in a country; to stay as a temporary resident.”
The first mention of “sojourners” is found in Exodus 12:48-49. Verse 48 is quite long, but talks about strangers who desire to stay in Israel needing to be circumcised if they wish to observe Passover. Verse 49 says: “The same law applies to the native born and to the alien living among you.”
In Leviticus 16:29, the concept of strangers (sojourners) keeping the law of the land is again mentioned in regard to observing the Day of Atonement, or Yom Kippur. Further on in Leviticus 18:26, we find this: “You must keep my decrees and my laws.” That section of Leviticus discusses prohibitions of certain practices, that both native born Jews and sojourners in the land were expected to adhere to.
The entire point of the Old testament scriptures is that the law of the land is to be kept by everyone who lives there, regardless if they were born there or not. Add to this the fact that Christ Himself never repudiated anything from the Old Testament. Draw your own conclusion.
Hospitality towards strangers was held in high regard in Israel, especially in Jerusalem when pilgrims were present for festival days. Alfred Edersheim, in his book Sketches of Jewish Social Life, says this in regard to rabbinical teaching on hospitality: “…no man was to account a house as only his own…the Tractate Aboth (1.5) mentions these as two out of the three sayings of Jose, the son of Jochanan-‘Let they house be wide open, and let the poor be the children of they house.’” (p.47)
As a Christian and as an American citizen, I can choose to be as open and generous as I want to be. That’s my prerogative. But my personal choices do not supercede the law of the land. For that matter, neither do the personal choices of the “sojourners” ( in this case, illegals) within our borders override the law. That’s Biblical truth, neither denied or repudiated by Christ. So, with all this in mind, I’d like to suggest methods to start dealing with our illegal immigration problem.
A PROPOSAL (In five parts)
* Immediately close the borders. Secure with a fence, and armed guards. Guards would have discretion to use deadly force when needed.
* Enact a 25 year moratorium on ALL immigration from all parts of the world. This would also include stopping all political asylums, amnesties and “guest worker” programs. The moratorium would be up for review every five years. It would then be decided at these times to either keep restrictions in place or ease them somewhat.
* The review process would be done by a commission of five governors, from the following states: Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Florida and New Jersey. The impact of illegal immigration is felt more on the local level than on the overall national level. ( Ultra-liberal California has been excluded from this list on purpose. All the other states mentioned have the next highest illegal populations and therefore bear the brunt of the expense and other problems.)
* Either repeal the 14th Amendment or at least remove Section One that states anyone born here or naturalized is a citizen. This would remove a huge incentive for illegals. Repeal the Dream Act, and change the law to make illegal entry into the country a federal crime.
* Start deportation proceedings on a state-by-state basis. Any state that refuses to do so will immediately loose all federal monies (i.e., for education, community block grants, high way and other infrastructure repair, etc., etc.) Each state would also be required to enact laws making it illegal to rent to, or employ illegals, or offer any tax payer funded assistance of any kind.
Law abiding American citizens have had enough. We’ve all heard plenty of “hold their feet to the fire” rhetoric. Time for talk is over. Immigration looks like it’s going to be the first test for that. The fecal matter is about to hit the air circulation device full force.
John DeGroff is the original bass player for the Christian rock band Petra. He currently plays for the band GHF which is comprised of other original members from Petra. DeGroff has extensive experience as a freelance music journalist and newspaper reporter as well as an on-line music reviewer. He is a member of the Gospel Music Hall of Fame and lives in Warsaw, Indiana where he is employed as a care giver for mentally challenged adults.