Tuesday, April 27, 2010

The Problem With Mexico

The problem with Mexico is fairly simple. It's their government, which is socialist. Until the citizens of Mexico decide to cast of the shackles of socialism they will continue to be poor. Sad, but true. Only with an economic transformation can there be a chance for people in Mexico to be successful.

The Bible on Immigration

I've been following a thread on PP where a select group of passages were presented allegedly on the Biblical view of immigration. All of the passages were against oppression of resident aliens (KJV uses the word "sojourners" to describe them). Here's the passages listed in the post:

“He executes justice for the fatherless and the widow, and loves the sojourner, giving him food and clothing. Love the sojourner, therefore, for you were sojourners in the land of Egypt.”
(Deuteronomy 10:18–19 ESV)

“You shall not wrong a sojourner or oppress him, for you were sojourners in the land of Egypt.”
(Exodus 22:21 ESV)

“You shall have the same rule for the sojourner and for the native, for I am the LORD your God.””
(Leviticus 24:22 ESV)

“Thus says the LORD: Do justice and righteousness, and deliver from the hand of the oppressor him who has been robbed. And do no wrong or violence to the resident alien, the fatherless, and the widow, nor shed innocent blood in this place.”
(Jeremiah 22:3 ESV)

As usual on PP, there are significant factors ignored. It's the usual list of social-justice passages, but for some reason is selective. Nobody in the threads interacts with the whole counsel of God. What does the Bible say about immigration?
Exo 12:48 And when a stranger shall sojourn with thee, and will keep the passover to the LORD, let all his males be circumcised, and then let him come near and keep it; and he shall be as one that is born in the land: for no uncircumcised person shall eat thereof.
Let's ignore for the moment what would motivate someone who is doing a lookup of the passages on how aliens should be treated to ignore this and many similar passages. What does this passage itself say?

It says that to be a sojourner in the land of Israel one is required to obey the Jewish Law, including observing Passover. Is this an isolated passage? No, there are quite a few passages which show that the sojourner was more than a stranger in the land - he was a convert to the Jewish faith. Here's another passage:
Lev 17:10 And whatsoever man there be of the house of Israel, or of the strangers that sojourn among you, that eateth any manner of blood; I will even set my face against that soul that eateth blood, and will cut him off from among his people.
Here is perhaps an even stronger passage (if there's something stronger than the death penalty in the previous verse):
Lev 20:2 Again, thou shalt say to the children of Israel, Whosoever he be of the children of Israel, or of the strangers that sojourn in Israel, that giveth any of his seed unto Molech; he shall surely be put to death: the people of the land shall stone him with stones.
And also,
Lev 16:29 And this shall be a statute for ever unto you: that in the seventh month, on the tenth day of the month, ye shall afflict your souls, and do no work at all, whether it be one of your own country, or a stranger that sojourneth among you:
If someone was residing in Israel they had to obey the religious laws of the land. How does that relate to our situation as citizens of a secular state? If anything, if America is a Christian country (a crucial subject now in debate) then there could be a requirement that someone applying to come to the USA must share the national faith.

If the USA is not a Christian nation, then why appeal to the Old Testament as a model for our country? It seems that selective eisegesis (reading into rather than out of the text) is once again at work on the PP.