Who Is Jesus…To You?

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44 Responses

  1. Xenia says:

    wondered why those same prayers and love weren’t going out to the desperate children on our border.<<<

    But prayers are going up to God for these children, all over America. People do love them. I must have a completely different Twitter feed than you have.

    Yes, I know there are people out there who have a different opinion about this than I do. I have chosen to curate my contacts on Twitter and FB. I will not provide an audience for people who preach a version of Christianity that I do not think is Christianity at all. They are surely free to believe what they want but I am free not to listen to them.

    Yes, I am very narrowminded.

  2. Xenia says:

    Regarding the Thai boys, their story took place in a land far, far away. It’s like a movie and the outcome wouldn’t affect us, in our daily lives, either way. We don’t have to give money and their families aren’t planning to settle in the house next door. Easy to have emotions for something that does not really touch us in real life.

    But those Hispanics, fleeing from terror. What if they want to live next door to me? What if they need medical care? Am *I* going to be expected to use *my* tax dollars to help them out? Hey, I’m a Christian! I expect everyone to obey the law! (Well, the laws I like, that is….)

  3. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    Love for the children can take place in a manner you may disagree with but it still takes place. Those kids, even though separated from their parents, were probably cared for better than they have been in their life – and much better than they were cared for on the 1,500 mile journey. Good food, new clothes, medical / dental care, recreation, TV, clean sheets and indoor plumbing.

    Picture if 20 families showed up on your door step in short period of time and you were mandated to care for them?

    The alternative was just to wave the families through with nothing but a pat on the back and well wishes for them to find their families as they travel from Texas or Arizona to Los Angeles.

    I would suggest the kids were loved.

  4. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    That does bring up a question I had not thought of before. So a family makes the 1,500 mile journey across the Mexican desert, presents themselves at a port of entry in Texas and says they are looking for family somewhere in LA. When they are clear to enter are they then left to continue the walking journey across Texas, NM, AZ to CA to search for family? Does family need to pick them up? Does border patrol call Uber? What does happen?

  5. Xenia says:

    Good food, new clothes, medical / dental care, recreation, TV, clean sheets and indoor plumbing.<<<<

    Yes, these things matter SO MUCH MORE than one's own family. TV is better than Mama. Clean sheets are better than Papa.

  6. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    Xenia, as I said, they may be cared for and loved in ways in which you disagree… and you have.

  7. Michael says:

    MLD,
    Each persons journey once here is different.
    One of the common things is that once here, family and extended family pay for bus tickets to the destination.

  8. Duane Arnold says:

    A large number of the people, especially from Central America are seeking asylum. Some are literally fleeing for their lives… and the lives of their children. Let me repeat, they are seeking asylum. Many of those who are sent back become targets. Their children are targeted. Wives and daughters are targeted.

    We don’t have good solutions. We can however show compassion. Regardless of the arguments concerning immigration overall, compassion is not separating children from parents as some sort of “object lesson”. It is sinful.

  9. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    I guess its the premise of the article. If I do not see immigration the way Michael sees immigration then it must be that I have a different Jesus whose qualities I must list.

    I could turn the tables on something that Xenia did a couple of weeks ago “if you really think abortion is murder…”

    Well if we really think thousands / millions of children are losing their lives or are in danger of it, shouldn’t we send our troops down there and put an end to it? Like freeing the Jews from Auschwitz.

  10. Michael says:

    What Duane said…

  11. bob1 says:

    Can’t think of anything in Michael’s post to disagree with.

    Orthodoxy– right believing

    Orthopraxy — right living

    These two must go together.

    And I think Michael’s thoughts are pretty well balanced.

  12. Em says:

    This is a good topic for discussion, but also one with many facets and comments can easily be misunderstood…. The boys in the cave?
    Looonng years ago in the early days of TV, the days when Southern California was just beginning to replace groves and vineyards with housing developments a little girl ran out of her house, thru her yard into a still open field. As her mother watched, little Kathy Fiscus disappeared. Vanished from view. She’d fallen into an abandoned well!
    A TV station set up their camera and began a 24 hour broadcast vigil as folks all over the L.A. area did likewise in front of their living room TVs. I imagine even atheists prayed as we watched. My point is?
    At the same time little Kathy was dying in that well, there were children in dire situations – in hospitals down the road and in mud huts and city streets all over the world. Precious newborn baby girls across the Pacific rejected and put out to expire as nature took its course (Christian missionaries rescued many). No one watched those dramas play out in their living rooms. Misery may love company, but i think it is our nature to run from it – if we can.
    Many of us have worried and had the immigrant children in our prayers. Yet while we know of the jeopardy they are in, we aren’t drawn into a life and death drama covered hourly on the TVs in our living rooms. Of course, the parent of the child and folks whose lives are personally involved are going to wonder why we go on business as usual…

  13. Duane Arnold says:

    “…shouldn’t we send our troops down there and put an end to it?”

    We did send troops – as advisors to repressive military dictatorships that bred many of the conditions that are still evident today and are causing people to flee and seek asylum elsewhere.

  14. The New Victor says:

    Sending money and food to dictatorial regimes further cements their power as well (because we can’t dictate what happens to it once it enters a sovereign nation), as it has in Africa and Asia for decades. The tiny NGO groups, religious and not, on the ground are probably doing more good than the millions in aid packages.

  15. Em says:

    #13 – just like we are helping the Afghani today? 😐

    random thots
    Arguably, perhaps, we did “save” the world in the 1940s…from a facist takeover… But…
    Can we make a case that God has directed us, the Church or the United States, to save this world?

    Just as that Jewish family placed their child in the hands of strangers to escape the holocaust, i’d like to think that this mama would place her child’s welfare above family cohesion – i’d like to think that i’d be on my knees in tears thanking the authority doing for my child what MLD described above.
    The problem, IMV, is not the separation. Rather it is the risk of incompetent bureaucratic management.

    Perhaps there is a need to step back and assess the magnitude of this mass immigration? It isn’t one or two families. Pray that competent (and compssionate) people – like the team that rescued the soccer team – will, by God’s miracle, form a team to solve the plight of the immigrant hordes – very unlikely it will be a church…. But pray … Sigh

    If i were a rich man yubbi dibby dibby dum… What i’d like to do is run ads aimed at drug consumers, aimed at shaming them into the dirt! Ads showing photos of the victims, from the beheaded villager to the nice white girl defecating in a San Francisco doorway… Bet i couldn’t find a TV or newspaper that would touch them.. Bet i’d have to buy billboards… and wouldn’t that upset some folk? Sigh

    Enough random pontification… I hope this thread keeps up through the evening – God give us wisdom to sort this thru and then give us strength to stand with Your God-given clarity

  16. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    Well, my comments were not meant to stir controversy over Latin American politics. It was however a rebuke of Michael’s comment that we have a different Jesus if we differ on who we care for or how we care for them.

  17. Em says:

    IMHO – when it comes to politics, the Church should be about as involved as Jesus was…. Was Jesus a liberal conservative or a conservative liberal? I seem to feel a divine glare cast in my direction when i ask that? Ulp

  18. Duane Arnold says:

    #16

    A rebuke is not needed. Michael is simply speaking the truth…

  19. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    Duane – surely you are pulling my leg to get a rise. Hey, even in all my boisterous polemics I never tell someone if they disagree with me that they have a different Jesus. Let’s see a smiley face when you are joking friend. 🙂

  20. Michael says:

    I’m just now coming back to town. What I said…and I intentionally said it carefully… was that there were obviously different perceptions of Jesus than the one I have.

  21. Michael says:

    Jesus was apolitical…that’s why He lived to a ripe old age and died in his sleep…Jesus is Lord is the most radical political statement of all time.

  22. Michael says:

    Jesus defied political parties and categories…and so should we.

  23. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    Michael – this is what I responded to;

    i especially didn’t (and don’t) understand why those who follow Jesus would not love those children. – YOU POINT OUT THAT WE HAVE A DIFFERENCE ABOUT THE CHILDREN

    It is apparent that my perception of Jesus…His person and His teachings…is different than some other folks perceptions. YOU POINT OUT THAT WE HAVE A DIFFERENT PERCEPTION OF JESUS. HIS PERSON AND TEACHINGS.

    I find this false. My last word – what if I said “Jesus laid it on my heart to hold the position I hold (which has remained unstated at this point.)

  24. Em says:

    Jesus WAS apolitical that is why the world turned on Him – claiming to be inheritor and king of the world is pretty apolitical … or is it nonpolitical? 😦

  25. Michael says:

    MLD,

    I find it absolutely true, but we have comments open for people to disagree..

    My faith would condemn me if I held your position and spoke as you do about these children.
    Yours doesn’t.

    Thus, we have radically different perceptions of what our faith demands of us.

  26. Michael says:

    Em,

    Claiming to be King was the most radically political thing imaginable…and why He was crucified.

  27. Em says:

    #26…. Hmmm… When i think political, i think of finagling to achieve one’s desired result… there was nothing devious about our Lord… But, perhaps i am wrong in my definition….
    Well, come to think of it, He kind of did play poker with the devil…. Hmmmm

  28. Michael says:

    Politics is about the use of power in government.
    When Jesus said He was Lord and not Caesar, he was King and not Herod, the politic forces lined up and murdered Him because he was usurping their claim to govern.

    We all have to decide which ruler we will bow the knee to…

  29. Em says:

    Anybody want to address the innocent children that Herod killed trying to get baby Jesus? Scorners of the Faith love to bring up the fact that our God allowed that….

    How much of mans inhumanity can we forstall? I’d say we can stand, we can minister, but we will have limited effect… am i too short sighted?

  30. Michael says:

    I can no more explain the slaughter of the innocents than I can explain why God doesn’t save every sick child that someone prays fervently for.

    I don’t know how much difference we can make, but it has to start with the desire to make a difference.

    My guess is that if the government stopped its war on refugees at the border and told the church to handle it…we could and would.

  31. Em says:

    Who was it… Bush 41? Who said charity should be the responsibility of the Church.?

    Sadly, the result was churches jockeying for the government dollars to implement that… they still do… Catholic Charities do seem to think that they have divine right… maybe they do…. dunno tho

    I hope we who believe in the millenial rule of Christ are correct because i want to see how Jesus as King – absolute ruler – over fallen human nature runs the show
    good thread going here IMNSHO
    God keep…

  32. Michael says:

    I have no doubt that given the opportunity to do so, the Roman Catholics, Anglicans, and Methodists would mobilize as never before and do amazing things in this situation.

    All three already are present and doing what they can.

  33. Duane Arnold says:

    #19

    Very direct… I am not joking. Joking with (or about) the lives of children for the sake of a “punch line” in a thread is abhorrent.

  34. Michael says:

    I think we’re at a point in this country…with all the hostility and division…that we need to put our cards on the table.

    I’m not interested in arguing with or rebuking anyone…I just want it clearly understood why I think what I think and write what I write.

    I don’t believe at this juncture that either political party is worth the powder to blow them to hell…so I’m not arguing for either.

    I’m arguing for a Christ centered worldview…what I believe to be a Christ centered worldview.

    The teachings of Jesus are what fascinate and captivate me…

  35. Xenia says:

    Amen Michael.

  36. Eric says:

    In Australia, Christian voices, whether officials spokespeople or everyone else on Facebook, are far more in favour of humane treatment of asylum seekers than against it. Unfortunately our political leaders (inc some Christians) don’t share our view.

  37. bob1 says:

    Apparently, according to court evangelical Paula White, Jesus could never have been an illegal refugee. Why?

    White claimed that although Jesus was a refugee, he didn’t cross borders illegally.

    “I think so many people have taken Biblical Scriptures out of context on this, to say stuff like, ‘Well, Jesus was a refugee,’” White said in the CBN interview published Monday. “Yes, he did live in Egypt for three-and-a-half years. But it was not illegal. If he had broken the law, then he would have been sinful and he would not have been our Messiah.”

    Refutation: several hundred evangelical leaders, including the head of Focus on the Family.

    http://evangelicalimmigrationtable.com/influential-signatories/

    Most Christian theologians would likely find flaws in White’s analysis, said Matthew Soerens, national coordinator for the advocacy group Evangelical Immigration Table. He said the concept of “illegally” entering Egypt hardly applied during Jesus’ time, centuries before the existence of modern nation-states that issue passports and visas to regulate migration.

    “We have no reason from the text to think that his parents requested refugee status in advance of their flight,” Soerens wrote in an email. “Much like many Salvadoran or Honduran families today who are fleeing gang violence, their response to a credible threat to their family’s safety was to try to reach a foreign country where they would be safe, protected from those seeking to do them harm.”

    https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/trump-spiritual-adviser-jesus-refugee-paula-white_us_5b4638bce4b0bc69a783160a

  38. Steve says:

    I wonder if there will ever be protests or concerns for any of the American children that have been hurt, killed etc. from the actions of illegals in America because of unenforced border policy. The narrative is unfairly unbalanced that we hear constantly in the drive by media. Some of the things said will fall on deaf ears to a parent that has lost their children to the actions of illegals in this country. Is this about Jesus or about border policy? How insensitive it would be to tell a Christian parent who has lost their children to violence of illegals that has come to a different conclusion about the border that they have a different Jesus.

  39. Michael says:

    Steve,

    Yes, the coverage is unbalanced… because the actual crime rate for undocumented people is far below that of the native population.
    One of the interesting stats for the last twenty years is that border cities have had the lowest crime rates in the nation.
    Anytime a life is taken there should be an outcry and justice should be done, but the truth is that most of the violence and death has crossed the border the other way…due to our insatiable lust for drugs.

    I’m not here to prosecute all the arguments about immigration…I wrote this to define my starting point for assessing everything.

  40. Steve says:

    I commend you Michael and your advocacy for the least of these is a beautiful thing. Some of us may come to different conclusions on the best way to handle things. However, I try to keep an open mind because I know I have been wrong plenty of times.

  41. Michael says:

    Steve,

    Thank you.

    Solutions are hard to come by…especially when our leaders aren’t interested in them

    We can and should discuss all the alternatives, but my hope is that all those discussions start from a place informed by Scripture and compassion.

  42. Babylon's Dread says:

    Profoundly agree, of course I would augment, expanding the teachings of Jesus but not enough to quibble.

  43. Michael says:

    BD,

    Augmentation and expansion is most welcome…

  44. Amen. Caring for our neighbours supercedes political considerations. Amen to pointing out that we are ambassadors of Christ. Hence, all our words and deeds should represent the perspective of God’s Kingdom and we should rise up to the occasion if anything earthly affects the interests of God’s kingdom! – That includes the salvation of all these children!

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