Did you know that Jesus was an asylum seeker? His parents escaped the brutality of Herod and lived in Egypt for years.
Yes, as a migrant family.
Sincerely, The Bible
We can put Jesús, José and Maria in a cage… or we can welcome them.
It's as simple as that.
And then, it isn’t.
You see, in Luke 10, a lawyer (also know as "a Bible expert") stood up and tested Jesus.
He said to him, “Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” or in other words, “What can I do to go to heaven?”
In full-Jesus-style, he replies to his question with two question,
1. “What is written in the law?” (Tell me what you know.)
2. “How do you read it?” (Tell me how you interpret it.)
The patriotic-theologian answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, with all your mind (Deuteronomy 6:5) and your neighbor as yourself (Leviticus 19:18).”
So the Word of God said to him, “You have answered correctly. Do this, and you will live.”
But he, desiring to justify himself (not cool) asked Jesus, “Who is my neighbor?” or in other words,
“Who shall I stand with?
"Where do I draw the line?”
So Jesus replied with a parable.
* A story that was intended (in love) to offend the mind in order to reveal the heart.
Don’t skip it.
“A certain man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho and he fell among robbers, who both stripped him and beat him, and departed, leaving him half dead. By chance a certain priest was going down that way. When he saw him, he passed by on the other side. In the same way a Levite also, when he came to the place, and saw him, passed by on the other side. But a certain Samaritan, as he travelled, came where he was. When he saw him, he was moved with compassion, came to him, and bound up his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. He set him on his own animal, and brought him to an inn, and took care of him."
Then Jesus asked the lawyer, ‘Now which of these three do you think seemed to be a neighbor to him who fell among the robbers?’
He replied, ‘He who showed mercy on him.’”
Then Jesus said to him, “Go and do likewise.”
Yes Carlos, “Go and do likewise.”
This parable would have been challenging enough for the Bible-expert if the Samaritan was the one beaten up on the side of the road and all Jesus was asking him to do was help.
However, he used that example not just to say, be kind to your despised neighbor, but to say: learn from them.
As Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. said while preaching on this, “The Priest and the Levite asked themselves, ‘If I stop to help this man, what will happen to me?’ The Good Samaritan reversed the question, ‘If I do not stop to help this man, what will happen to him?’”
Can we ask this again, “What will happen to the undocumented worker from Central American if we don’t stop to help them? What will happen to the hordes of refugees in the Middle East if we don’t stop to help them? What will happen to the kids in cages if we don’t stop to help them?
And even more than that, we need to ask, “How can we relate to them so we can learn from them?”
THIS is humility personified.
And THIS … is the invitation of Christ.
I believe it to be a good thing to cherish the land God blessed us with. We need to appreciate our culture, learn our history, honor our people.
But Jesus could care less about our patriotism.
The whole point of the gospel was to included everyone.
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It’s the original promise to Abraham, “Through you all peoples on earth will be blessed.” That includes Mexican and Iranians, the Arab and the Guatemalan, and even us Puerto Ricans!
* And can we not all agree that this is especially true for children?
Nationalism is a great deception that needs to be confronted as a great deception.
Jesus loved children.— Carlos A. Rodríguez (@HappySonship) June 22, 2019
Identified with children.
Highlighted their attributes.
Warned us not to hurt them.
And called them the owners of the Kingdom.
The way America is treating at the border is Anti-Christ.
It must stop, in Jesus name.
Sure, it "works" for history books and competitive Olympics. But it does not work for making disciples of all nations. And it does not fit the picture of Revelation, “And he had the eternal gospel to proclaim to those who live on the earth– to every nation, tribe, language and people.”
We can’t be the bride of Christ and concubines of Caesar. We can’t choose the empires of this world and the ways of his Kingdom. We can’t prioritize a super-power over God’s humility and fire.
As Stanley Hauerwas wrote, “The church is constituted as a new people who have been gathered from the nations to remind the world that we are in fact one people.”
Plus, I don’t want to miss the chance of engaging with Jesus in the flesh:
For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.
Ultimately, I so think that my frustration is self-inflicted. I want this nation to behave like a Christian (at least my incomplete version of what a Christian looks like). But America is not the body of Christ.
You and I.
And let me put the emphasis on the “I”. We are believers of a way that is above patriotism, comfort and human nature. Our distinctive is compassion; it’s beauty and self-sacrifice… It is the cross and the resurrection. And whatever I want to see around me, I need to stop telling you to do it.
So I’m done telling others that they need to love their enemies. I’m finished with imposing my ethics and theology on my sisters and brothers. I’m sick of the sound of my own self-righteousness.
And I will give my time and space to helping refugees and those seeking asylum. It’s time to make my life the loudest written article.
Next month I am heading to Tijuana to help at a shelter for families that were denied entry. We will assist mothers who have been separated from their children. Kids who were stuck in the in-between. And with our words and actions we will say to say and his family:
"Welcome Asylum Seekers. We will make room for you and Jesus, in our inn"
To answer Mama Loves Jesus…
They were refugees to Egypt to escape the slaughter of baby boys in Bethlehem. Can be found in the account of Matthew. Peace to you and merry Christmas.
At the bottom of the article you said you were going down to help in tiajuana at a shelter. Would you be able to share a link to this… a way for others to help. Thanks! I’d love to help with the mothers and children.
This article has some great points ❤️ It is to be noted that Jesus parents, Mary and Joseph, went to Bethlehem to complete a census, not to seek refuge. I love knowing the exact truth of the word. I would love for you to share verses with me that support the idea that his parents were seeking refuge ❤️
Exactly how many people are we supposed to let into this country? Everyone? How much money is it going to cost? The man in the picture with his daughter was not escaping persecution. He wanted a better paying job. He was impatient. The United States did not cause these deaths-he caused them. We need to stop incentivizing people to come here.
Would it be possible to have an email notification system for when you post a new blog entry? I love reading them, but it would be awesome to be notified when there is a new one :)