Even in faith based documents I find left wing lunacy, it seems. My fiancé just gave me a book with an article inside it entitled Jesus did not Speak English. My Loony senses went off almost immediately, and I delved inside, giving the article a read. From a purely faith based perspective, the article makes a good deal of sense. Until it actually starts talking about it’s intended subject matter, that is. What is that subject matter, exactly? Well, it’s illegal immigration. Yep. That’s right. Illegal immigration. Somehow, some way, the person that wrote this article equates the teachings of Jesus Christ with an open borders philosophy. How, you ask? Well, like most misguided souls who try to use scripture to make their point, he cherry picks the scripture he needs while completely ignoring common sense, as well as other, equally valid scriptural arguments.
Item one: he puts the caption “Jesus did not speak English” on a marquee outside the church she goes to. Several comments that graced his mail after that included remarks about how obvious it was that the Savior of course didn’t speak English, given that English was not yet a language. Apparently he didn’t realize at the time that people might misconstrue his message’s intent, which was that Jesus didn’t speak English, and therefore he wouldn’t have persecuted illegal immigrants because of their own inability to speak it. What?
Item 2: The people who complained apparently did so because they wanted to perpetuate some myth about Jesus speaking English and agreeing with their way the world worked. That in and of itself is somewhat ludicrous, since the world didn’t work the same way in the first century that it now works in the 21st. Sure, the basics are the same, but all the complexities are different. Anyway, on with my point. He bases this assessment on absolutely nothing, implying, in my view, that people who believe in Jesus automatically believe that he was whatever ethnicity the individual complainer was, spoke English, and believed everything that that individual believed and nothing else. And of course, no evidence to support this crackpot theory, either. Oy.
Item 3: The cherry picked Scripture quotes. You knew they were coming. Second column of the first page of the article brings up the idea of persecuting the stranger, which is what appears to be the crux of the article. She makes reference to the Israelites, specifically:
Exodus 23:9: You shall not oppress a resident alien; you know the heart of an alien, for you were aliens in the land of Egypt.
Leviticus 19:34: the alien who resides with you shall be to you as the citizen among you; you shall love the alien as yourself for you were aliens in the land of Egypt.
Deuteronomy 24:17: You shall not deprive a resident alien of justice.
Icing on the cake is Matthew 25:43: I was a stranger, and you did not welcome me.
For those who are unaware, Exodus and Leviticus both deal specifically with the Jews and their time in the desert after Moses led them out of Egypt. God is warning the Israelites in that verse that they were once strangers, and so had better not treat other strangers the way Pharaoh treated them. Good advice, but last time I checked it isn’t the same thing as dissolving a nation’s borders and allowing any Tomas, Ricardo and Enrique to come in without learning their motives.
The article goes on to state the obvious, telling readers that already believe in God that he is the God of Creation, and therefore everyone on the planet is a brother or sister in Christ. Of course they all are! In his assessment, though, the pastor neglects to mention yet another piece of Scripture, dealing specifically with the division of responsibilities and reverence concerning God and man. Namely, “Render unto Ceasar that which is Ceasar’s. Render unto God that which is God’s.” Last time I checked, nations had a responsibility to police their borders and keep an eye on who comes in here. At least, every other country in the world seems to be able to police their borders without getting flak for being racist. Having an official language does not mean you have an inherent dislike towards outsiders. Having an official language, in fact, would make things easier to communicate because EVERYONE IN THE COUNTRY WOULD SPEAK THE SAME LANGUAGE!!! Why is that so difficult for “open borders” types to understand?
The pastor even acknowledges in the article that “government runs more efficiently if our law, rules, and regulations are effectively communicated.” Great. I agree. Unfortunately he ruins it by saying in the same breath: “Why would we hamstring our elected leaders by requiring that they act as if a language barrier did not exist?” What? When did wanting an official language for the country equate to ignoring the fact that a language barrier existed? If we were doing that, why would we have implemented the Ellis Island program a hundred years ago? If we were truly ignoring a language barrier, we wouldn’t bother even letting these people in the country in the first place! We’d just seal off the borders and force people to cross illegally (which they already do anyway, btw).
Another question I have is this: Why, as the article implies in its attitude, is enforcing immigration law automatically lumped in with a lack of hospitality? People who are here illegally have shown us what they think of our country’s laws by BREAKING THEM! Why are we not allowed to be more like Joe Arpaio in Arizona and enforce our immigration laws? Mexico has downright draconian laws. Laws so fiercely enforced that the flow of South American illegals is significantly less than that of Mexico itself, largely because the SAs are afraid of being caught by the Federales!
Basing an argument entirely on faith is doomed to failure, as this one was. Not that I have anything against the priest, mind you, but come on! We can’t enforce our border laws because to do so would be un-Christian? What if a terrorist with a dirty bomb slipped in and blew up a school full of Catholic kids? Would that make the guy change his mind? I certainly hope so!