Thursday, June 29, 2006

This can only be good for the country

Bush examining Piper's book, Life as a Vapor

Monday, June 05, 2006

Friday, June 02, 2006

In Today's Greenwood Commonwealth

Evangelical Compassion and Illegal Immigration
By: Matt Redmond

In an AP article dated May 19 regarding illegal immigration, Richard N. Ostling points out the virtual silence of Evangelical Protestants. His assumption is that among other things Evangelicals are “struggling to balance compassion with respect for law and order.” He moves on to quote the Washington spokesman for the National Association of Evangelicals, who says, “Evangelical leaders are concerned that our voice be a biblical voice that does not send the wrong signal to the growing Latino community.” He then continues to express his opinion about the unbiblical position of turning millions of illegal immigrants into felons. Of course, it is really geography which makes them felons. Near the end of the article Ostling quotes an “evangelical specialist” at the Ethics and Public Policy Center who asks, “How do you seal the borders without seeming to lack compassion?” without waiting for an answer.

Now we have it, don’t we? Perhaps it is a foregone conclusion for Evangelicals; the issue is really one of compassion. I have guessed as much though the only evangelical I have actually discussed it with is my wife.

There may be a number of issues that require little thought for conviction but this issue requires more so than say, murder or the like. The directives are not quite as clear. For there are certainly many persons in this great land who feel strongly that to close the borders by building a wall, deporting the illegals who are here and prosecuting those who have hired them is, well…not very compassionate.

As a thoroughly conservative Evangelical, I would like to argue for the converse.
I would argue that if we grant we compassion to the illegal immigrant we are not being very compassionate to the legal immigrant or those born here. The legal immigrant has much patience and hope done the paperwork and waited. And waited. To simply “forgive” and reward through amnesty those who have cut in line has in effect rendered the line of no value. And it has told those who wait they are patient…suckers.

As Caesar’s appetite grows, it becomes harder for me to gladly part with what is his. But alas we taxpayers are richly rewarded with infrastructure and the security procured by our military. And so are the illegal immigrants! And yet the illegal immigrant has paid no state and federal income tax. This is the same as walking into a store and expecting free merchandise. The storekeeper hands over the goods. Why? Because you are already there. This is preposterous and we have a name for it. “Give me that which I refuse to pay for!”

The inevitable question will involve “where is the grace and mercy you evangelicals talk so much about”? I get squeamish about saying it is irrelevant. But in a way they are. And in true diplomatic fashion, they are relevant. Grace and mercy are not excuses for a breaking of the law. Indeed, they are reasons for submitting to the laws of the land (Romans 13). And forgiveness? Of course, as we walk them to the back of the line…behind those who have waited wanted to enter legally.

If we decide we will show compassion to illegal immigrants by granting them amnesty we must also acknowledge that we will be showing a lack of compassion to law-abiding citizens… naturalized and otherwise.