So, let’s assume a stranger shows up at my door. He looks miserable. He claims to be starving and freezing. As a father and husband I would not instantly welcome him into my home. I would have him stay on the cold porch, while my wife brought some food out and a blanket.
I would sit out there with him and visit. I would “interrogate” him. Then, if I felt confident he wouldn’t harm my family I would welcome him into my home with food and warmth and the love of Christ, while telling him of my love for guns and how I keep one under my bed.
Why would I do such?
1) I have a God-given responsibility to feed the poor in Jesus name.
2) I have a God-given responsibility to protect my wife and children.
Let me take this a step further. Let’s say the individual was wearing an orange jumpsuit he claimed he found. I would interrogate that individual much, much longer, because of where it appears he came.
Now let’s apply this situation to our government. No Christian I know wants our government to turn away refugees. We recognize the huddled masses longing for freedom. We love the poem “Give me your tired, your poor …” But those of us who know our Bible know that the primary responsibility of government is the protection of its citizens.
While government has a clear responsibility from God to protect its citizens it does not have a clear God-given responsibility to feed the poor. The responsibility to feed the poor is given to the families of the poor (1 Timothy 5:8), the church (Acts 5 and James 2), and to individual Christians (Isaiah 58:7; Matthew 25:34-40; and James 1:27) in Scripture. It is not given to governments, unless someone does hermeneutical hopscotch to argue from a theocratic concept in the Old Testament.
However, rest assured, governments are never told not to feed the poor. So, all of us rejoice when governments feed the poor, but we should not desire our government to shirk its God-given responsibility to protect its citizens.
I have seen too many well-meaning Christians claiming that Christians (if they are true Godly Christians) should oppose Trump’s decision. Some even state if you don’t then you are in sin. Such bloviating is as naive as it is wrong. In fact, the opposite is true – it would be Biblically wrong to desire our government to evade its God-given responsibility to protect its citizenry according to Romans 13.
Let’s allow some facts to shed light on this emotional topic. You and I are not privy to the information from the military, CIA, or FBI, which may have prompted our commander-in-chief to make this decision. Most, if not all, of the nations he placed on this travel ban have terrorists training camps where terrorists are trained how to terrorize their enemies (the United States being the grand prize). All seven of these countries were selected by the Obama administration as posing “special risks” for visa entry (I know, it’s mind-blowing that we weren’t told that by the media).
So, if you were a terrorist how would you get into the U.S.? Would you ever consider coming in with refugees from the country you were trained?
Isn’t that crazy?
That he would single out countries where terrorism is encouraged and where there are terrorist camps. Isn’t it crazy that he would stop what seems to be the easiest way for these terrorists to enter our country to do what they have been trained to do?
But let’s continue down this logical path as light is beginning to shine on the darkness of our liberal media. He hasn’t mandated an infinite ban on travel; he has put some time restrictions on it.
Why would he do this? Perhaps, he and his team are trying to get a wrap on how best to vet people coming from countries where terrorism is encouraged. In other words, he is spending more time on the porch interrogating someone because of where he/she is apparently coming.
Finally, this may shock many reading this, but this is not the first president to put a travel ban on certain countries. Both President Obama and President Carter did this for the purpose of protecting our nation. I know – shocking isn’t it? And to think, you never heard that on the evening news?
So, what is our response as Christians?
1) Don’t criticize our government for your responsibility: Feed the poor!
2) Pray for and encourage our president to continue protecting U.S. citizens as that is his God-given responsibility (even if he doesn’t know it).
3) Pray for the refugees and those affected by this travel ban. Pray for grace. But most importantly pray for them to be saved.