Wednesday, July 30, 2014

A two part look at the southern US border situation and influx of people

Part 2 here


Winslow Homer "Northeaster"
But the wicked are like the tossing sea; for it cannot be quiet, and its waters toss up mire and dirt. (Isaiah 57:20)

[The ungodly are] wild waves of the sea, casting up the foam of their own shame; wandering stars, for whom the gloom of utter darkness has been reserved forever. (Jude 1:13)

The sea is an apt metaphor for the restlessness of the ungodly. They toss and turn, go to and fro, casting up muck and mire with ungodly thoughts and deeds. In Jude, he is speaking of infiltrating false teachers, but the metaphor is apt also to apply in general to the ungodly, their foaming spray prevents clear vision and in fact has no substance.

They waves dash themselves against the rocks, attempting to breach the ordained boundaries and come on a flood.

The situation at the southern border of the United States with Mexico has been in the news this past month. Thousands upon thousands of people are flooding across the border, seemingly unhindered. Many of these are children. It is difficult to determine why so many, why now. We have always has a porous border but it seemed that the limits were holding somewhat, but then last month the border suddenly collapsed and they came on in droves.

What do we call these people? Immigrants? Illegals? Refugees?
Winslow Homer "Summer Squall" 1904

I was asked to look into the situation and write about it. As with anything I write, I don't like to simply put something out there and leave it adrift without context. Nor do I like to write something without having a solid Christian perspective on it. I like to embed a news piece or a situation in history and place a context on it, so we can understand what it means.

What is this crisis? Is it a humanitarian crisis? A refugee crisis? An illegal immigrant crisis? A deliberate enemy combatant strategy in asymmetrical warfare?

It might do to look at a few things first. Nations are artificial. Originally, God had us on one continent, speaking one language. One race, one people. After the flood, the bible seems to hint that the continents were broken up geologically and separated by seas.

To Eber were born two sons: the name of the one was Peleg, for in his days the earth was divided, and his brother's name was Joktan. (Genesis 10:25)

In that way, the geography of nations was born. Genesis 10 outlines the Table of Nations and the fathers of those nations.

The population problem grew and grew. Nimrod settled the plains of Shinar and founded Babylon. He led the inhabitants into an apostasy revolt and built a tower to a false god. So God confused the languages and scattered the people across these recently divided lands. (Genesis 11:7-8). And so, the peopled nations were born. It was the first mass migration.

Winslow Homer, "After the Hurricane" 1899
Ever since, the peoples have been a restless sea, as Isaiah metaphorically proposed, throwing up muck and mire. After the end of the church age during the Tribulation, the antichrist will arise from 'the sea',

And I saw a beast rising out of the sea, with ten horns and seven heads, with ten diadems on its horns and blasphemous names on its heads. (Revelation 13:1).

Pulpit Commentary says of the sea in this verse,
The sea, again, is the type of instability, confusion, and commotion, frequently signifying the ungovernable nations of the earth in opposition to the Church of God
In some cases, peoples didn't emigrate willingly. War or persecution struck many. The Old Testament has commands for how to treat "the alien" or the asylum seeker.

In fact, a multitude of Hebrews left Egypt with Moses. Jesus and his family fled persecution from Israel to Egypt. Leviticus 19:34 says,

You shall treat the stranger who sojourns with you as the native among you, and you shall love him as yourself, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt: I am the Lord your God.

Other translations of the Leviticus verse say 'resident alien' or 'foreigner among you'.

And you are to love those who are foreigners, for you yourselves were foreigners in Egypt.  (Deuteronomy 10:19)

Do not despise an Edomite, for the Edomites are related to you. Do not despise an Egyptian, because you resided as foreigners in their country. (Deuteronomy 23:7)

Winslow Homer "Undertow" 1886
In the New Testament, Matthew 10:23 describes persecution as one reason for mass migration.

But whenever they persecute you in this city, flee to the next; for truly I say to you, you shall not finish going through the cities of Israel, until the Son of Man comes.

Acts 8:1 records the persecutory migration of Christians from Jerusalem outward:

And Saul approved of his execution. And there arose on that day a great persecution against the church in Jerusalem, and they were all scattered throughout the regions of Judea and Samaria, except the apostles.

Ever since the separation of peoples into nations, they have moved restlessly from one side of the earth to another for one reason or another. They search for food (As Naomi and Ruth did). Sometimes they are captured and unwillingly brought to a new nation, as Daniel and his people were. (Daniel 1:1-3). Sometimes war and pestilence force them out. as the Acts 8:21 verse shows.

After Adam and Eve were forced to relocate from the Garden of Eden, they settled. Eve bore Seth, and they began to worship the LORD by name. (Genesis 4:26). Apostate, God-hater and rebellious Cain left that place, and he wandered. Cain left in search of a land that would accept him. He settled in Nod, east of Eden, and built a city; Genesis 4:16-17. Since the beginning, individuals, tribes, races, and whole populations have always moved. It is no different in these days.
Migration has always been a part of human history. But because of the widespread changes caused by globalization, more people are migrating than ever before. In the last 25 years the number of people on the move has doubled from 100 million to over 200 million.  Many migrants are forcibly uprooted and approximately 30-40 million are undocumented worldwide. (Source)
As one of the most complex issues in the world, migration underscores not only conflict at geographical borders, but also between national security and human insecurity, sovereign rights and human rights, civil law and natural law, and citizenship and discipleship. (Groody, NCR) (Source)
Winslow Homer "Eight Bells" 1886
From small tribes to mass emigrations, as Isaiah said, the unsaved are restless. Until the coming of the Son of Man, the Lion of the Tribe of Judah, to install His Kingdom and deliver peace...the people as the sea will always be looking for a new horizon, a better horizon.

Part 2, the migrations of today, including the southern US border.

---------------------

Further Consideration:

Todd Friel of Wretched Radio had a short word, regarding the children of this current immigration influx

Immigration and the Christian: Should we send them all back?

No comments:

Post a Comment

Jesus, bread of life (Chris Powers animation underway)

Chris Powers, artist, illustrator, and animator, is hard at work creating a new animation. Here, he share with you a few screenshots from t...