Nov 17, 2015

Thoughts on the Syrian Refugee Crisis.

I didn't realize this could be such a dividing issue among Christians. Today, I've seen my Christian friends on social media take so many different stances on the "right" way to respond to the refugee crisis:

"We don't want Muslims infiltrating the U.S."
"It is wrong for us to turn away thousands of people in need."
"Our immigration policy must be based on more than an appeal to compassion." 
"There's at least 6 reasons why ending refugee resettlement in the U.S. is the wrong approach."
"If we let all these Muslims in, they'll change our country."
"Jesus has not called us to make safety our priority."

I don't claim to have solutions to this situation. I don't deny the complexities this crisis presents.

But I have been thinking.

I've been trying to view this situation Biblically, truthfully, and objectively. Because so many of my brothers and sisters in Christ have been voicing their differing opinions on the topic, I've been wrestling with all sides of this crisis.

Ultimately, with much prayer, my thoughts on the subject boil down to this....

  1. We are all refugees who have been accepted and brought in by our gracious God.
  2. If I've been received and cared for by God, by faith tells me that what I've received for free I should give for free.
  3. I don't want to stand before Christ someday having to explain that I didn't support Syrian refugees because I was scared of what might happen to me.
  4. Regardless of what our immigration policy is, terrorism is inevitable. There's no way to absolutely prevent more attacks.
  5. Many of these refugees are Christians who are fleeing persecution. I know there's no way to really distinguish between the Christians and non-Christians. But who are we as the Body of Christ (who have enjoyed relatively safe and care-free lives) to turn them away?
  6. Currently, thousands of Muslims are turning to Christ because they're sick of Islam. Will the Church overlook this opportunity because of political and safety considerations?
  7. Turning away allies will make us less safe.
  8. Rather than fearing, we must trust God. Persecuted Christians around the world trust God on a daily basis more than many Westerners have ever had to trust God in their lifetime. There is a risk that comes with completely trusting God.
  9. When has following Christ ever involved looking out for our own safety?
  10. There was once a Middle Eastern family who were forced to walk across countries to escape a cruel tyrant, who were dirty and tried from their journey, who were unwanted and un-welcomed. This family was Mary, Joseph, and Jesus.
  11. Jesus calls us to be Good Samaritans
  12. Let's not punish the victims of ISIS for the sins of ISIS.

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