Faithlink Discussion: Immigration Reform
by Jacob Juncker
When an alien resides with you in your land, you shall not oppress the alien. The alien who resides with you shall be to you as the citizen among you; you shall love the alien as yourself, for you were aliens in the land of Egypt: I am the LORD your God.
Leviticus 19:33-34, New Revised Standard Version
As many of you know, I post daily scripture readings (lections) on a different blog called, “Daily Lections.” Just a few weeks ago, the Leviticus passage above was part of our daily readings. A reader observed: “WOW! Leviticus 19:33 really speaks to us in our time, doesn’t it? All Christians need to be reminded of this verse!”
Indeed, this verse is important. All Christians DO need to be reminded of its message to welcome the stranger not as a stranger, but as person with full rights–as a citizen. An “alien” should be more a brother than a stranger to us, if we’re faithful to the Scriptural witness.
Now I’m a little hesitant to highlight a passage from Leviticus in this post. I’m well aware of the dangers of taking the Levitical code too seriously. Afterall, it does state that if we eat shellfish (11:10), co-mingle our crops (19:19), and wear garments of more than one material(19:19), we’re abominations–violators of the law. But maybe that’s the point of Leviticus…we’re all sinners. We’re all violators of the law in need of God’s grace. We are all “aliens,” wayfaring strangers, who need help finding our way back home to God.