Churches and Immigration
The Catholic Church has, of course, been a huge proponent of open-borders policies, but various factions of Protestants are getting in on the act, too. You would expect it from the ELCA, PCUSA, ECUSA, and the United Methodists. But as I've written previously, the spirit of lawlessness is afoot in my denomination (Southern Baptist Convention), too. The guilt-mongers are everywhere, including perhaps standing behind the pulpit of your local church.
The role of American churches in perpetuating the current crisis was examined by James C. Russell in a little book called "Breach of Faith." Russell traces some of the changes in ecclesiastical and liturgical life that have fostered a paradigm shift. Churches are no longer defenders of the Western culture (Christendom) produced by historic Christianity but have become to often exponents of a perverse and unbiblical universalism. Moreover, rather than serving as an agent of personal morality advancing charity and a love of neighbor, the church has increasingly become an instrument of social action.
While the church has a duty to call upon the magistrate to govern by just laws and policies, precisely the opposite has occurred as religious leaders have turned into apologists for law-breaking and charity with the money of others.
How should Christians respond to the immigration challenge? Lou Dobbs reported recently that a John Zogby poll from last year asked churchgoers if they supported the House bill that would make illegal aliens return home and reduce future illegal immigration by securing the border and performing checks on illegal employers. "Seventy-five percent of Protestants responded that was a good or very good idea, 77 percent of born-again Christians also agreed, and 66 percent of Catholics also backed tougher enforcement measures," writes Dobbs. Obviously the leaders are out of touch with their laity.
Russell writes: "No Christian should feel compelled to accept an immigration expansionist agenda in order to conform to a Christian denomination. Any church directive that seriously threatens a congregant’s prospects for individual or group survival should be considered null and void, since it violates the Fifth Commandment, as well as the most fundamental natural law of self-preservation. The advocacy by most American churches of continued high levels of legal immigration, increased numbers of refugees, and amnesty for illegal aliens constitutes a violation of the laws of self-preservation and societal order. Church proscriptions against the expression of normal healthy preservationist beliefs, attitudes, or behaviors may be rejected, if for no other reason than that the acceptance of such prohibitions would leave the individual and his or her group defenseless."