22 Bible Verses on Welcoming Immigrants
Download a printable pdf version of this document. ‘I am a foreigner and an alien staying among you; please provide me property among you for a grave site, so that I may bury my dead out of my sight,’ says the stranger and alien. Genesis 23:4 (NIV) You must also love the foreigner, since you were strangers in Egypt, and you must love the alien now. 10:19 (Deuteronomy 10:19) The foreigner who lives among you will be treated as if he or she were a citizen among you; you will love the alien as if he or she were a member of your own family, because you were aliens in the land of Egypt, and I am the Lord your God.
Deuteronomy 27:19 is a biblical verse.
He permitted no one to persecute them, rebuking rulers on their behalf, saying, “Do not touch my anointed ones; do not injure my prophets.” In 1 Chronicles 16:19-22, the Bible says I was the blind’s eyes, and the lame’s feet, as well as their feet.
I shattered the fangs of the unrighteous and forced them to release their prey from their jaws as a result.
Psalm146:9 Because, if you truly amend your ways and your deeds, if you truly act justly toward one another, if you do not oppress the alien, the orphan, and the widow, or shed innocent blood in this place, and if you do not seek after other gods to your own detriment, then I will come and live with you in this place, in the land that I gave to your forefathers thousands of years ago, forever and ever.
7:5-7 (Jeremiah 7:5-7) You will divide it up as an inheritance for yourself and for any immigrants who have settled in your country and have produced offspring in your community.
Ezekiel 47:22 is a verse in the Bible that says This is what the Lord of hosts says: “Render right judgements, show love and charity to one another; do not harass the widow, the orphan, the immigrant, or the destitute; and do not plan evil against one another in your minds.” Zechariah 7:9-10 is a biblical passage.
- 5:43-44 (Matthew 5:43-44) I was hungry, and you fed me; I was thirsty, and you gave me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you welcomed me with open arms.
- ‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all of your mind; and you shall love your neighbor as yourself,’ says Matthew 25:40.
- Paul writes in Romans 12:13 that There is nothing that anybody owes anyone else but to love one another; for the one who loves another has completed the law of love.
- Romans 13:10 is a verse that states that When Christ reigns, there is no longer a distinction between Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian or Scythian, slave or free; rather, Christ is everything and everyone in all of creation.
- Allow for the continuation of mutual affection.
- It is important to remember those who are imprisoned, as if you were in prison with them; those who are being tortured, as if you were being tormented yourself.
- You would be wise to send them on their way in a manner worthy of God, for they embarked on this journey only for the sake of Christ, receiving no assistance from nonbelievers.
3 1 John 1:5 (New International Version) In that moment, I heard a booming voice from the throne say: “See, the dwelling of God is among mortals.” In his capacity as their God, he will live among them; they will be his people, and God himself will be with them.” Revelation 21:3 is a verse from the book of Revelation.
What does the Bible say about immigrants and refugees? • Saint Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral
Saint Mark’s Pledges Support for Immigrants and Refugees| The Church Council of Greater Seattle has published a white paper titled Sanctuary in Faith Community (PDF) Refugees should be treated as you would like to be treated. When a foreigner comes to live among you in your country, do not treat them unfairly. The foreigner who has taken up residence among you must be treated as if he or she were one of your own. Because you were foreigners in Egypt, you needed to love them as much as you did yourselves.
- Harvesting your land’s harvest should not extend to the extreme limits of your field, nor should it be used to gather the gleanings of your land’s crop.
- Leave them to the plight of the poor and foreigners.
- He fights for the rights of the fatherless and the widow, and he cares for the foreigners who live among you by providing them with food and clothes.
- (See Deuteronomy 10:18-19 for further information.) Do Not Discriminate Against a Foreigner Do not persecute a foreigner; you are familiar with what it is like to be a foreigner since you were foreigners in Egypt at one point.
In that case, I’ll be here to put you on trial.” The Lord Almighty says, “Do not be afraid of me; I will quickly testify against sorcerers, adulterers, and perjurers, against those who rob laborers of their pay, who mistreat the widows and the fatherless, and who deprive foreigners among you of justice,” and he adds, “Do not be afraid of me.” Malachi 3:5 (Malachi 3:5) What the Foreigner Requests of You “As for the foreigner who does not belong to your people Israel but has come from a distant land because of your name-for they will hear of your great name and your mighty hand and your outstretched arm-when they come and pray toward this temple, then they will hear from heaven, your dwelling place-do whatever the foreigner requests of you.” Please do everything the foreigner asks of you, so that all the peoples of the earth will know your name and fear you, just as they do your own people Israel, and so that they will recognize that the home I am building bears your Name.
- (8:41–44; 1 Kings 8:43–44) Leave your front door open for the passing traveler.
- (Matthew 25:25-36; Mark 10:25-36; Luke 10:25-36) Every one of us was baptized by a single Spirit.
- After all, we were all baptized into one body by one Spirit, whether Jews or Gentiles, slave or free, and we were all given the same Spirit to drink from in order to create one body.
- (See 1 Corinthians 12:12-14 for further information.) Love Your Neighbor as Much as You Love Yourself Because following this one commandment, “Love your neighbor as yourself,” satisfies the requirements of the entire law.
- “And who do you consider to be my neighbor?” he inquired of Jesus.
- ” They stripped him of his clothing, beat him, and then fled, leaving him half-dead on the street a short time later.
- In the same way, a Levite, upon arriving at the location and spotting him, passed by on the other side.
- He went to him and treated his wounds with oil and wine, then left him to rest.
- The next day, he went to the bank and withdrew two denarii, which he delivered to the innkeeper.
“The one who had pity on him,” the expert in the law said. “Go and do likewise,” Jesus instructed him. (Luke 10:29-37; abridged version)
Bible Verses About Immigration
1Everyone on the planet was now speaking in the same language and using the same speech pattern. In Shinar, a plain was discovered by the inhabitants as they travelled eastward. They established there. Three of them gathered together and said, “Come, let’s create bricks and bake them completely.” They utilized brick instead of stone for the foundation, and tar for the mortar. When they saw one other they said, “Come, let us construct ourselves a city, complete with a tower that soars to the skies, so that we may create a name for ourselves; otherwise, we will be spread across all of the world.” 5However, the LORD descended to observe the city and the tower that the people were constructing.
- 9This is why it was given the name Babel: because it was there that the LORD confounded the languages of the entire world.
- 10This is the story of Shem’s ancestors and descendants.
- He lived for 500 years after becoming the father of Arphaxad, and he had several sons and daughters throughout that time.
- After becoming the father of Shelah, Arphaxad lived for 403 years and had a number of additional sons and daughters with her.
- He lived a total of 403 years after becoming the father of Eber, during which time he had many other sons and daughters.
- After becoming the father of Peleg, Eber lived another 430 years and fathered a number of other sons and daughters.
- Moreover, after becoming the father of Reu, Peleg lived for a total of 209 years and had numerous sons and daughters.
207 years passed after he became the father of Serug, during which time he had many more sons and daughters of his own.
23And after he became the father of Nahor, Serug lived for 200 years and had a number of other sons and daughters with other women.
Nahor lived for 119 years after becoming the father of Terah, and during that time he had several other sons and daughters.
27This is the story of Terah’s ancestors and forefathers.
Terah was also the father of Haran.
In Ur of the Chaldeans, in the land of his birth, Haran died during the last days of his father Terah’s life.
The name of Abram’s wife was Sarai, and the name of Nahor’s wife was Milkah; she was the daughter of Haran, who was the father of both Milkah and Iskah.
As a result of her inability to conceive, Sarai was now without children.
However, when they arrived in Harran, they decided to stay. 32 Terah had a long life of 205 years, and he passed away in Harran.
What does the Bible say about welcoming the stranger? — Border Perspective
In the following Bible texts, immigrants and refugees are mentioned specifically. All of the quotations are taken from the New Revised Standard Version of the Bible. Genesis 3:22-24 – Adam and Eve are ejected from the Garden of Eden because of their sin. Genesis 7 and 8: Noah constructs an ark to protect himself and his family from the deluge. ‘Go from your nation, from your kindred, and from your father’s home to the place that I will show you,’ Abram is summoned in Genesis 12:1. “Now there was a famine throughout the country,” says Genesis 12:10.
As a stranger and an alien in the country of Canaan, Abraham is described in Genesis 23 as follows: Joseph is reunited with his family in Egypt as a result of Jacob’s decision to relocate his family to Egypt to escape the famine.
8-14 — Joseph’s generation has passed away, and the Egyptians have oppressed the Israelites since then.
As a result of being driven out of Egypt so quickly, the Israelites had little time to prepare for their journey and were forced to bake unleavened cakes of bread to survive.
Moses reveals God’s commandment in Exodus 22:21: “You shall not harm or afflict a resident alien; because you were strangers in the land of Egypt.” “You shall not strip your vineyards bare.leave them for the needy and the immigrant,” says Moses in Leviticus 19:9-10 and 23:22, quoting God’s commandment.
“The alien who dwells with you shall be to you as the citizen among you; you shall love the foreigner as yourself, for you were aliens in the land of Egypt: I am the Lord your God.” “The alien who resides with you shall be to you as the citizen among you.” The book of Leviticus 24:23– Moses receives God’s commandment, which states: “With me, you are nothing more than strangers and renters.” Num.
When the Israelites are forced to escape into Canaan, the Lord directs Moses to give the Levites towns of refuge so that when the Israelites are forced to flee into Canaan, they would have cities of refuge granted to them.
In Deuteronomy 10:18-19, the Bible says, “For the Lord your God.loves strangers, giving them with food and clothes.” For the same reason that you were strangers in Egypt, you are also required to love the stranger.” Deuteronomy 14:28-29 and Deuteronomy 26:12-13– Tithing was instituted, in part, for resident foreigners, according to the Torah.
- “You shall not deprive a resident alien.of justice,” according to Deuteronomy 24:17-18.
- A wandering Aramean was my ancestor, according to Deuteronomy 26:5.
- Aliens had a vital role in the construction of the temple, according to I Chronicles 22:1-2.
- Psalm 105 – Reminiscing about their sojourn: “When they were few in number, of small consequence, and foreigners in it, traveling from country to nation, from one kingdom to another people,” says the Psalmist.
- According to Ecclesiastes 4:1, “Behold, the tears of the oppressed—with no one to console them.” Moab’s exiles are in need of a shelter, according to Isaiah 16:4.
- Jeremiah 22:3-5 – Do not do anything improper or violently against the stranger.
- The immigrant should not be oppressed, according to Zechariah 7:8–10.
Jesus and his parents run from Herod’s hunt for the child in Matthew 2:13-15.
“.I was a stranger, and you welcomed me,” says Jesus in Matthew 25:31-46.
“.bring good news to the needy.,” says Luke 4:16-21.
The blind will now get their sight.
“.Extend hospitality to strangers.” is the mark of a real Christian, according to Romans 12:13.
“By faith Abraham.set off for a place.not knowing where he was going,” according to Hebrews 11.
“What good is it.if you profess to have faith but do not put your faith into action?” says James 2:14-17.
“.Let us love one another, not in word or phrase, but in truth and deed,” says I John 3:18. The Bible says in I John 4:7-21, “Beloved, let us love one another because love comes from God.”We love because God first loved us.”
What Does the Bible Say about Immigration? (and How Should Christians Respond)
Written with permission from the Evangelical Immigration Table’s eBook, “Thinking Biblically on Immigrants and Immigration Reform,” which may be found here. To obtain a free copy, please visit this link. For far too long, when it comes to establishing our attitudes regarding immigrants and immigration, we have failed to look to the Scriptures as our primary source of authority. Only 12 percent of evangelicals indicated the Bible as the major impact on their views regarding immigration, according to a study conducted by LifeWay Research in 2015 for the Evangelical Immigration Table.
As a matter of fact, when asked about the most important element that influences their opinions on the subject, evangelicals cited media coverage more frequently than the Bible, their local church, and national Christian leaders combined.
As a result, while the Bible does not prescribe a specific immigration policy that should be followed by the United States (or any other nation), it is awash in stories of immigrants, as well as specific directives from God to the Israelites on how to treat foreigners who came to live in their land, as well as broader principles that have clear implications for how contemporary followers of Jesus should interact with our immigrant neighbors.
However, even among evangelicals who differ on how our government should prudentially apply biblical principles to matters of public policy, there is no doubt about the church’s role in our society.
What the Bible Says about Immigrants
Several of the most prominent characters in the stories of the Bible were themselves immigrants, as evangelical Old Testament scholar Daniel Carroll explores in depth in his bookChristians at the Border: Immigration, the Church and the Bible. Many of the most prominent characters in the stories of the Bible were themselves immigrants, crossing borders to reside in another land at some point in their lives. Many biblical figures were persecuted and expelled from their homelands. Joseph’s brothers sell him into slavery in Egypt, where he remains for the rest of his life.
- After being expelled from their own country, Daniel and his buddies are forced to work for a foreign nation.
- Others leave their home country for a variety of reasons.
- Daniel Carroll R., Christians at the Border: Immigration, the Church, and the Bible, Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2008, p.
- His son Isaac and grandson Jacob are also forced to relocate as a result of the hunger.
Later, Naomi and her family are driven to leave Judah by starvation, and after hearing stories of sufficient food, Naomi returns to the region, this time with her daughter-in-law Ruth as an accompanying companion.
God Loves the Vulnerable (Including Refugeees and Immigrants)
In addition to telling us about many experiences of refugees and migrants, the Old Testament also informs us about God’s attitude toward immigrants and other people who are in precarious situations. When Jesus urges the Israelites to travel through their wheat fields, olive groves, and vineyards only once, he means “leave everything that is left” to “foreigners,” “fatherless children,” and “widows” (Deuteronomy 24:19-21). In fact, these three distinct vulnerable categories of individuals are singled out in the same verses on several instances as being objects of God’s special attention on multiple occasions.
- Those who “slay the widow and the alien slaughter the fatherless” are decried by the psalmist as evil (Psalm 94:6).
- Indeed, at several places in the Law of Moses, we are not informed as to why a specific order is being issued.
- There is a rationale, however, for God’s directives about the treatment of immigrants: “When a foreigner sojourns among you in your land, do not treat him unjustly.
- People of God are instructed to love immigrants as they love themselves because they have personal experience with what it is like to live in a place that is not their own.
Christians Have an Obligation to Care
Jeremiah and Zechariah, among others, remind God’s people of their responsibility to protect the vulnerable: “Do what is just and right. ” No harm or violence should be done to a foreigner, a fatherless child, or a widow” (Jeremiah 22:3). The widow, the fatherless child, the alien, and the impoverished are not to be oppressed” (Zechariah 7:10). God’s punishment is announced through the prophet Malachi against those who “oppress the widows and the fatherless, and deprive the foreigners among you of justice,” according to the prophet (Malachi 3:5).
It’s about Character More Than Law
“The Lord your God defends the cause of the fatherless and the widow, and he loves the foreigner residing among you, giving them food and clothing,” says the Bible. While not all of the specific elements of Old Testament law are binding on Christians today — nor can the laws God gave to Israel simply be adapted into U.S. immigration law — they do reveal something about God’s unchanging character (Deuteronomy 10:18). The verse continues, as case the repercussions for his people weren’t plain enough already: “And you are to love those who are strangers” (Deuteronomy 10:19).
As Daniel Carroll R.
It is not an exaggeration to suggest that understanding God’s compassion for the sojourner has allowed us to have a better understanding of who God is and what his redemption is like.
Bible Verses about Immigrants
“When a foreigner sojourns with you in your country, you shalt not treat him unfairly.” Leviticus 19:33-34ESV – “When a stranger sojourns with you in your land, you shall not treat him unfairly.” Your foreigner who sojourns with you shall be treated like one of your own people, and you shall love him as one of your own, for you were strangers in Egypt when I brought you out of there: I am the Lord your God.
- In Exodus 22:21, the Bible says, “You shall not harm or persecute a sojourner, for you were sojourners in the land of Egypt.” “You shall not harass a sojourner,” says Exodus 23:9 (ESV).
- “Then I will approach near to you for judgment,” says Malachi 3:5 in the ESV.
- “Cursed be anybody who perverts the justice due to the sojourner, the fatherless, and the widow,” according to Deuteronomy 27:19 (ESV).
- Published on July 30, 2019.
For more on this subject from the Evangelical Immigration Table, check out:
CAN YOU EXPLAIN WHAT THE BIBLE SAYS ABOUT IMMIGRATION? IS IT POSSIBLE TO EXERCISE THE GREAT COMMANDMENT WHEN IT COMES TO CARING FOR REFUGEES AND IMMIGRANTS? WHEN AND HOW DO IMMIGRANTS FIT INTO THE BODY OF CHRIST AND THE LOCAL CHURCH? DOES THE GREAT COMMISSION REFER TO IMMIGRATION? RESPECTING THE GOD-GIVEN DIGNITY OF EVERY IMMIGRANT Why does God want us to protect the family unit of immigrants and refugees? What should Christians do in the face of illegitimate immigration and refugee influx? WHAT DOES THE BIBLE SAY ABOUT BORDER SECURITY, AND SHOULD CHRISTIANS SUPPORT THEIR OBSERVATIONS?
To encourage distinctly biblical thinking about issues of immigration, the Evangelical Immigration Table provides discipleship resources focused on immigration from a biblical and missional perspective as well as advocating for public policies that are consistent with biblical values, specifically restitution-based immigration reform, among other things.
What the Bible says about welcoming refugees
In an executive order signed on Friday, Jan. 27, President Donald Trump prohibited refugees from seven countries with a primarily Muslim population from entering the United States. Refugees from Syria, on the other hand, will be barred from entering the country for the next 120 days. He had made a commitment to the United States to build a wall on the country’s border with Mexico just two days before. Soon after the order was issued, Mexican President Enrique Pea Nieto said that he would postpone a planned visit to the United States.
This would allow him to fulfill his campaign pledge that Mexico would really pay for the wall’s construction, despite the protestations of the country’s southern neighbor at the time.
Both broad and more specific concerns about what it means to welcome the stranger are being debated here.
And, like other Christians, I look to the Bible for direction when it comes to determining the most appropriate way to welcome the foreigner. So, what does the Bible have to say about this?
We will all be strangers, sometime
According to the Bible, we have a duty to treat foreigners with decency and kindness – and to say so emphatically and unambiguously. The Old Testament is a collection of writings from the time of Abraham to the time of Jesus Christ. Glenn Twiggs is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License. The biblical scholarAlice Laffey stated in “Love the Stranger,” an article written for the annual meeting of the College Theological Society in 1991, that the Hebrew words “gûr” and “gor” are the ones most often glossed as referring to the “stranger,” though they are also translated as “newcomer” and “alien” or “resident alien,” respectively.
For example, the book of Deuteronomy establishes the obligation that farmers set aside a portion of their product every third year for strangers, widows, and orphans in order to fulfill the law.
The needs of hospitality are frequently reaffirmed throughout the Hebrew Bible in dramatic ways, such as in the narrative from the book of Judges, in which a host sells his own daughter to ruffians in order to protect his visitor.
The stranger is Jesus in disguise
The verse from Matthew 25:31-40, which is the most often cited text in the New Testament, which Christians read in continuity with the Hebrew Bible or “The Old Testament,” is the most frequently cited section in the New Testament that deals with welcoming the foreigner. The visitor turns out to be Jesus disguised. I’m waiting for the official word. CC BY SA According to this passage, the Final Judgment will take place when the virtuous will be awarded paradise and unrepentant sinners will be sentenced to endless punishment.
The virtuous then inquire, “When did we first encounter you, a stranger, and extend our greetings to you?” “Truly, I say to you, just as you did it to one of the least of these my brethren, you did it to me,” Christ responds.
Many academics believe that the terms “stranger” and “neighbor” in the New Testament are really equivalent in meaning.
Apart from that, it is said in the letters written by Paul of Tarsus (who was one of the most renowned of early Christian missionaries), which are known as the Pauline “Epistles,” that in Christ, “there is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female.” According to this viewpoint, the phrase “one in Christ” should be read literally, meaning that there are no fundamental distinctions in type between human beings in general.
Bible is unambiguous in its message
The strong admonitions against treating strangers with decency have, of course, existed alongside actions that would appear to indicate the opposite attitude. For example, Christians have sanctioned pogroms against Jews as well as slavery, imperialism, and colonialism, despite the fact that they would have affirmed biblical principles regarding caring for those who appear to be “other” or “alien.” The message conveyed by the Bible is unambiguous. When it comes to the specific questions of building a wall on America’s southern border with Mexico or welcoming immigrants and refugees, some Christians would argue that doing so does not violate any biblical precepts concerning hospitality to the stranger, because the issue is one of legality, and because a significant number of Christians did indeed support Donald Trump’s presidential campaign.
Another school of thought holds that cities and educational institutions should be designated as “safe zones” for illegal immigrants, which is diametrically opposed to the current administration’s viewpoint.
The principles of welcoming the foreigner, according to my interpretation of the Bible, are broad-reaching and unequivocal in their application.
The Bible says to welcome refugees
As on July 15, the Trump administration will no longer accept asylum claims from individuals who might have claimed asylum in another country before arriving in the United States, according to a statement. It is a 60-year-old policy that shields refugees from war, political persecution, and targeted violence that is being overturned by the new interim immigration law. Central Americans – hundreds of thousands of whom cross the border into Mexico each year – will now be denied the right to petition for asylum in the United States once they arrive.
According to my religious beliefs as a Roman Catholic scholar, the Bible provides direction in analyzing the Trump administration’s immigration policies, which range from the Muslim ban and border wall to the new asylum rule.
So, what does the Bible have to say about this?
We will all be strangers, sometime
The Bible says – emphatically and unequivocally – that we have a responsibility to treat strangers with dignity and kindness. The biblical scholarAlice Laffey writes in “Love the Stranger,” an article written for the annual meeting of the College Theological Society, that in the Hebrew Bible, the words “gûr,” “gor,” and “gor” are most often used to refer to the “stranger,” though they are also translated as “newcomer,” “alien,” and “resident alien,” respectively. The Old Testament is a collection of writings from the time of Abraham to the time of Jesus Christ.
The word “gor” appears over 50 times in the Pentateuch, which is comprised of the first five books of the Hebrew Bible.
For example, the book of Deuteronomy specifies that farmers should set aside a portion of their product every third year and distribute it to strangers, widows, and orphans.
As seen in the account of Judges, when a host sacrifices his own daughter to rapists in order to protect his visitor, the obligations of hospitality in the Hebrew Bible are occasionally presented in disturbing ways.
In addition to being “strangers” during their enslavement in Egypt and captivity in Babylon, the Israelites themselves were considered “strangers.” It is acknowledged by the Hebrew Bible that every person on the face of the earth will be a stranger at some point in their lives.
The stranger is Jesus in disguise
It is Matthew 25:31-40 that is the most frequently referenced text in the New Testament, which Christians read in conjunction with the Hebrew Bible, sometimes known as “The Old Testament,” when it comes to welcoming the foreigner. It is in this portion that the virtuous will be taken to Paradise and unrepentant sinners will be banished to Eternal Fire that the Final Judgment will be held. Those sitting at Christ’s right hand are referred to as “blessed” since they “were hungry, and you fed me, I was thirsty, and you gave me water, I was a stranger, and you welcomed me.” “I was hungry, and you fed me,” Christ says to those at his right hand.
“Truly, I say to you, just as you did it to one of the least of these my brethren, you did it to me,” Christ responds.
I’m waiting for the official word.
As a matter of fact, some academics contend that the terms “stranger” and “neighbor” in the New Testament are essentially equivalent.
It is also made apparent in the writings written by Paul of Tarsus – one of the most renowned of early Christian missionaries – and known as the Pauline “Epistles” that in Christ, “there is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female.” According to this viewpoint, the phrase “one in Christ” should be read literally, meaning that there are no fundamental distinctions in type between human beings in general.
Everyone is treated with the same respect.
Bible is unambiguous in its message
To be sure, in the history of Christianity, forceful pronouncements about treating strangers with compassion and respect have coexisted with acts that indicate the polar opposite. Others who would have upheld biblical ideals on caring for those who appear “different” or “foreign” were among those who backed pogroms against Jews, slavery, imperialism, and colonialism. The Bible is unequivocal in its message, as is the case today. Andrew Malone, Creative Commons Attribution If the United States refuses to grant refuge or builds a wall along its border with Mexico, some Christians say that doing so does not contradict biblical ideals of hospitality since the question is one of legality rather than biblical norms of hospitality.
Alternative Christian viewpoints, however, advocate for cities and educational institutions — in addition to churches – to be designated as “safe zones” for illegal immigrants, which is opposed by the administration.
However, according to my interpretation of the Bible, the principles that require us to welcome the foreigner are broad-reaching and unequivocal in their application. An updated version of the story that was initially published on January 30, 2017 has been released.
What did Jesus think of immigration?
Anyone who believes that Jesus has no stake in the issue over how we handle undocumented immigrants at our borders should engage in greater Bible study. The hero of one of Jesus most renowned parables is an unwanted visitor to Israelite land because he was not “one of them,” a descendant of despised immigrants who didn’t belong and thus didn’t belong. It is just the Samaritan who shows compassion for an injured Israelite who could otherwise have condemned him if he had been in full strength, but he is the only one who does so.
- The gospel’s consideration for the outsider is seen much earlier.
- From the beginning of his career, Jesus cures and instructs those who come to him from the Decapolis, a collection of ten cities, nine of which are on the wrong side of the border with Israel.
- A Syrophoenician mother with a sick daughter is able to wrest from Jesus both a cure and his adoration for her daughter.
- The same positive message, conveyed locally, is spit forth again and again.
- Meanwhile, a Samaritan woman by a well goes on to become one of the first successful apostles of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
- Jesus exorcises Gadarene demoniacs and heals Samaritan lepers with the same fervor with which he heals local victims of identical ailments in the same day.
- Just as Jesus will not restrict his notion of family to blood relatives, he will not create a boundary between his love and people who are in need of it, regardless of their race, gender, or nationality.
- The same Jesus who welcomes and cares for the stranger with the same warmth and compassion as his fellow residents also evokes an even more ardent expression of faith in his message from those who are not familiar with him.
Also published in the September 2019 edition of United States Catholic magazine is this article: (Vol. 84, No. 9, page 49). Image courtesy of Flickr cc through byronv2.
What does the Bible say about illegal immigration?
QuestionAnswer Note: We think that Christians are called to be compassionate and sympathetic toward immigrants (Exodus 22:21; Leviticus 19:33–34; Matthew 25:35), and we believe that this is a biblical mandate. We also think that the United States should have an immigration policy that is humane and sympathetic toward immigrants. The matter at hand, however, is not one of that nature. Namely, the subject at hand concerns illegal immigration, specifically whether it is immoral to break a country’s boundaries and violate its immigration regulations.
If we are forced to disobey a mandate of God by a law of the government, this is the only time we will defy it (Acts 5:29).
There is nothing in the Bible that is in opposition to the concept of a sovereign nation enacting immigration regulations.
Illegal immigration is a moral abomination.
Some people believe that immigration rules are unfair, unjust, and even discriminatory, and that this provides them the permission to enter the country illegally.
Once again, the question is not whether or whether a law is fair.
When Paul wrote the book of Romans, he was subject to the authority of the Roman Empire, which was governed by Emperor Nero at the time of his writing.
Despite this, Paul commanded Christians to submit to the authority of the government.
Some people believe so, but that is not the point.
Neither having entirely open borders nor having completely closed borders is prohibited by the Bible for a government to do.
The government has the authority to determine the severity of the punishment, which might include jail, deportation, or perhaps something more serious than that.
The great majority of illegal immigrants in the United States have come to the country in order to live a better life, provide for their families, and to escape poverty in their home countries.
However, it is not scriptural to break a commandment to obtain a “good.” Caring for the poor, orphans, and widows is what the Bible tells us to do (Galatians 2:10; James 1:27; 2:2–15).
Supporting, supporting, and/or promoting illegal immigration is, therefore, a violation of God’s Word.
While this may cause delays and frustrations, it is better than acting illegally.
What is the biblical solution to illegal immigration?
If disobedience is not a biblical option, what can be done in regards to an unjust immigration law?
If it is your conviction that an immigration law is unjust, do everything that is legally within your power to get the law changed: pray, petition, vote, peacefully protest, etc.
At the same time, we are also to demonstrate our submission to God by obeying the government He has placed in authority over us.
For this is the will of God, that by doing good you should put to silence the ignorance of foolish people.
Live as people who are free, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but living as servants of God”(1 Peter 2:13–16). Return to:Topical Bible Questions What does the Bible say about illegal immigration?
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