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Right Opinion

Wise Welcome

Rebecca Hagelin · May 1, 2019

Holy Scripture is very clear that believers are to practice warm hospitality. Whether welcoming a guest into our home or our nation, we are commanded by God to be generous and kind, freely sharing our blessings with others.  

Does hospitality mean that we allow anyone to enter our domain at anytime and for any reason? Is it immoral to permit some people in and forbid others from entering?

Those who advocate for “open borders” and unchecked immigration declare that it is immoral to erect walls or fences to keep people out of America. They often quote a single passage or two from the Bible to make their case but neglect to consult the whole counsel of Scripture. The Bible does, in fact, provide real guidance on the divisive topic that consumes much of our national conversation today. Anyone who cares to explore it will see that the Bible teaches us to exercise both love and discernment in deciding how and when to welcome strangers. 

Essential reading for those who seek to understand the truly moral approach to immigration is the newly released free e-book, “Wise Welcome: A Bible Study on Immigration.”

The 29-page exploration of the scriptural approach to immigration can be downloaded at no cost at www.AmericanEvangelicals.com.

Co-writers Kelly Monroe Kullberg, founder of the Veritas Forum and author of Finding God Beyond Harvard, and Dr. James Hoffmeier, Old Testament scholar, former refugee, and author of The Immigration Crisis: Immigrants, Aliens, and the Bible, say that the bitter “division over immigration policy is tragic and unnecessary, when a biblical understanding of a wise welcome could heal both the Church and nation.”

Mrs. Kullberg writes in the foreword, “The Bible teaches neither open borders, nor closed borders. It teaches wise welcome. We’re to maintain walls with doors.” She adds that the Bible is also very clear that visitors have obligations too. “Aliens are required to respect the laws, customs and indigenous culture of the country they have entered.”

And what about the very concept of national borders? A recent Harvard study reveals that the vast majority of Americans from both parties agree that we need secure borders. In fact, throughout history people have recognized the rights of nations to define and protect their borders, and when wars are fought over them, an essential element in treaties ending those wars is the establishment of new borders or the affirmation of existing ones. 

Borders are not mere lines on maps carving out shapes of nations but are real boundaries over which one may not legally enter without permission. Only complete ignorance of history and human behavior would cause someone to believe that a nation does not have the right to maintain and control her borders. 

No nation is so wealthy or large that it can solve the problems of all the hurting people in the world. Indeed, no nation can feed every mouth for even one day. Common sense and basic decency tell us that America must make decisions about how to best maintain a culture that enables our own citizens the opportunity to thrive while also responsibly opening avenues for select immigrants to become part of our citizenry too. Securely maintaining our borders guided by the principles of biblical love and wisdom will enable us to benefit the greatest number of human lives over the long haul. 

“Wise Welcome” masterfully lays out what God says about how we are to respond to questions of immigration and national identity. Although primarily written for churches and people of faith, the historical lessons and practical considerations covered provide thoughtful guidance to all policymakers on a variety of immigration topics including sanctuary cities, assimilation, justice, and social services. 

There is no need to wonder how we are to solve the current crisis at our southern border. There is no need to guess what will happen to our nation and to our people if the doors are taken off the hinges allowing everyone to enter. “Wise Welcome” provides the principles, the moral truths, and even the carefully documented statistics about many of the tragedies that have befallen our fellow Americans precisely because we have failed for far too long to allow Godly wisdom to inform our immigration policies.  

The principles that constitute moral immigration policies are not a mystery. Neither are the consequences to America’s future if we fail to establish them. “Wise Welcome” provides the answers to all who have ears to hear.

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