It seems many have forgotten that we are actually fighting a war. We seem to have become so numb to war, forgetting that Americans are currently dying in foreign nations to keep us safe. We are not fighting a war against a particular nation state, with its soldiers who adorn uniforms, or a nation in which a peace treaty can be signed. We are fighting a war against an ideology that knows no regard for borders, has no value for life, has a desire to conquer all who do not agree with its extreme ideology and whose greatest ally is time.
Christians in some parts of the Middle East have been virtually exterminated by Islamic jihadists. What is the Christian response to limiting refugees from nations that we are at war with or who share an ideology that is harmful to Americans?
First off, there is NO Christian response to what a government should do specifically in regards to refugees. I see Bible verse floating around about how individuals should treat “foreigners” or the “least of these”, verses that contain commands directed towards individuals NOT governments. It is very dangerous for Christians to apply principles to government that were meant for individuals.
The Biblical responsibility that IS directed towards government is to punish evil and reward good (1Peter 2:14). The Biblical responsibility of government is to protect its citizens from the evil that attempts to do harm to its citizens. To neglect that responsibility is to neglect the very responsibility that God has given to human governments.
It is very dangerous for Christians to apply principles to government that were meant for individuals.
As Christians what are we called to do? Actively pray for our brothers and sisters who are being persecuted in Islamic nations and other nations around the world. Pray that God would give them strength and hope to overcome the horrors that they have and may continue to experience. Minister and give aid to those “foreigners” who are currently living in our borders. If you live in Georgia, we are fortunate to be one of a few states that officially accepts refugees from Federal resettlement programs in Clarkson, GA (a city right inside metro Atlanta off 285). You can do what my church and my sister Anna have done for over 10 years and visit and minister to these refugees, the majority of which are Muslim. Find out what their needs are and show the love that Christ has called us to show. Most of these individuals are desperate and come here with virtually nothing but the clothes on their back.
I can only surmise that it is much easier to post a Bible verse about what Christians “supposed” response to refugees should be instead of actually doing what Christ has called us as individuals to do. It seems a Facebook post is much easier than even simply giving a cup of water to a “foreigner / refugee” living in the United States.
The response of our government? Continue to make it as hard as possible for people to come into this country that want to harm our citizens. A government must protect its people, especially in a time of war. We will continue to let in refugees to our nation who are being persecuted, actually 50,000 in 2017, because we want to and will continue to be a refuge of hope to the world. We will continue to create refugee camps and safe zones in Middle East countries that can serve as a temporary relief so that these individuals can continue to live in their countries of origin when the region is safe.
But always remember, our government has no obligation to allow any foreigner into our nation. Please do not apply principles to government that were meant solely for individuals. We can not blur the responsibility of the individual with the responsibility of government. The US Constitution is not a treaty to the world. Our Constitution and our God-given responsibility requires us to keep citizens safe and to vet those who want to do us harm. I am thankful that we live in a nation that attempts to protect its citizens and I pray that refugees who truly need help, many of which are Christians, will continue to find refuge in our great nation and we as brothers and sisters in Christ would actively minister to them.