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God and Government: Immigration, Part 2

September 15, 2014

Grace to you! Last week we started looking at how the bible can inform us to look at the illegal immigration issue. Israel served as an example that the various people who joined them had to adopt Israel’s philosophy of life, government, language, and beliefs. This week we will look at the doctrine of the church and how it informs us further about immigration policy.

The church is an organized body of people. Often from very different backgrounds but they hold to a uniform set of beliefs and theory of church government. The church admits people upon request. The church is willing to admit them if the person understands the congregation’s beliefs and church government. They must not only be willing to abide by them but to grown in their understanding and support of them.

No church stays strong long that does not have members who agree with their common set of beliefs. Nor does a church stay united when one groups seeks to have the church operate one way and another group seeks to have it operate another way. The church either winds up splitting in two, fighting among its members, or both! It seems many churches today are weak for this very reason. They have had an unrestricted open door policy of whom they admit without first really seeing if the person believes as they do or is willing to follow the constitution and by-laws of that local church. As a result, people with different beliefs about church government and doctrine wind up seeking to lead the church in various directions. The church eventually dies.

Returning to a biblical model, the church must screen its potential new members. It must remember it has a right and duty of those already in the church to make sure new members agree with them in both doctrinal content and church government style. Further the church is to take its new members and train them further into the teachings and governmental structure of the local church. In short, they must assimilate only those who are willing to be assimilated. Otherwise, the church should not accept them as members. And the church is not only free to deny them the right to enter their fellowship, but obligated to do so to preserve the church’s identity.

No church or nation can survive if the people coming are not first required to adhere to the ideas and government of that group. An unchecked, open door policy on illegal immigration will soon wreck the American Republic. To ensure the welfare of the current and future members of immigrants the beauty and values of our Republic we must hold our government accountable to stop illegal immigration. We must make sure those entering have American commitments and values as their top priority. We must invite immigrants to come, but only if they can commit to what makes America “America.” As Jesus said, and Abraham Lincoln copied later: “A nation divided against itself will not stand.” (Matthew 12:25)

Looking for a church home? Come visit South Whitwell Baptist, 133 South Oak Street, Whitwell. Sunday Service: 10:45 AM. Visit our web page: www.southwhitwellbaptist.webs.com

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