Gospel ministry to illegal immigrants: Conflict?

Discussion in 'Evangelism, Missions and the Persecuted Church' started by Puritan Sailor, Feb 18, 2007.

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  1. Bandguy

    Bandguy Puritan Board Sophomore


    I certainly do not mean to imply that sanctification is instant and complete at conversion. We all struggle with sin, myself included. The answer, however, is not to indulge those sins or even justify them. The answer is accountability.
     
  2. Bandguy

    Bandguy Puritan Board Sophomore

    The issue of right and wrong is that simple. Overcoming sin is not simple. It is a struggle everyday. Indulging and justifying sin, however is not the answer. If there is no struggle, only rationalization, then one might question their conversion.
     
  3. Bandguy

    Bandguy Puritan Board Sophomore

    1. Nobody said that we go out seeking the secret sins of those we witness to. However, if you know the person is committing a crime, as is the premise of this thread, and do nothing about it, you are, in my opinion, complicit in the rebellion and sin by indulging it and even justifying it.

    2. Let Ceaser take care of Ceasar's realm. Let's see...I think this is the same kind of arrogant thinking the Catholic Church showed recently when they turned a blind eye to the criminal behavior in their own church. What a shame. Granted, being here illegally is not the same as raping a child. The indulgence of criminal behavior, however, is basically the same.

    3. He is breaking the laws of our land by being here illegally. Why do you strive so hard to indulge and justify sin?

    4. Preaching the Gospel is a command from a higher authority, namely God himself. Illegal immigration is not anywhere commanded by God. Why you are so committed to indulging and justifying sin that you would make a silly argument like this is way beyond me.

    5. I fear your willingness to indulge and justify criminal, rebellious, and sinful behavior has led you to make several illogical and unbiblical arguments.
     
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2007
  4. Bandguy

    Bandguy Puritan Board Sophomore

    :amen:
     
  5. etexas

    etexas Puritan Board Doctor

    :amen:
     
  6. Bandguy

    Bandguy Puritan Board Sophomore


    Of course, to put that Amen into context, it is not loving to indulge and justify sin which results in the oppression of not only him, but other illegal immigrants and legal immigrants and citizens and allows their employer to continue to oppress them.
     
  7. VictorBravo

    VictorBravo Administrator Staff Member

    Personally, I'd take the case and sue the contractor, but I wouldn't lend money. I'd do it without any qualms at all. Jose has a cause of action, plain under the law. His status as an illegal alien does not change that. It is very unlikely that he'd be arrested for pursuing that claim. I see it quite often around here.

    That sort of thing really burns me.

    Still, Jose is facing the consequences of flying under the law. I wouldn't help him continue to do that because that is a violation of our laws.
     
  8. calgal

    calgal Puritan Board Graduate

    I would consider reporting the employer (and effective sanctions need to be applied to those who KNOWINGLY employ illegals) and would counsel with said alien to turn himself or herself in. :2cents: The employer's actions and blackmail of his employees would be a bigger concern than the immigration status of the workers in my opinion.
     
  9. Davidius

    Davidius Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    :agree:

    Letting someone live in sin is not loving.
     
  10. Semper Fidelis

    Semper Fidelis 2 Timothy 2:24-25 Staff Member

    I'm not sure why this is turning into an accusation of "Americans being against immigration" thread.

    Can we not acknowledge, as Adam aptly put it, that a minister ought to require that a converted Christian obey the law so that he is not a hypocrite?

    Leaving aside the issue of initial conversion - let's assume you know an American man that you have ministered to and is now a Christian.

    Let's say this man (American) is cheating on his taxes and has for years because he believes that the tax code is unjust.

    Do you confront the Brother according to Matthew 18 or not?

    It seems it's easier to see than when you make the man pitiable.

    I think the issue is certainly stickier if the man is not a brother in the Lord and you don't have a requirement to report him. Even if he's a brother now, you still don't have a requirement to report him.

    Patrick's question is hard enough (I would probably personally confront the slavemaster). What about this question:

    Shouldn't a Church take disciplinary steps if a brother remains impenitent of a sin? Isn't a brother sinning if, when taught about Romans 13, openly defies the law and refuses to obey God's Word? Perhaps they don't have to report him but shouldn't he eventually be put out of the Church if he refuses to repent?
     
  11. etexas

    etexas Puritan Board Doctor

    Of course I can put your comment into context and say you do misrepresent me by saying Max endorses sin as a loving thing. Is that is what I am saying. Read all my post on this before you judge me! :judge:
     
  12. Bandguy

    Bandguy Puritan Board Sophomore

    I was merely clarifying my position. If I implied something incorrectly in the process about what you believe, then I apologize and repent.
     
  13. etexas

    etexas Puritan Board Doctor

    It's all cool man! I probably read little much into it! I am half-Irish! I have to watch my temper. Sorry if I was a bit touchy. :handshake:
     
  14. Pergamum

    Pergamum Ordinary Guy (TM)

    Bandguy:

    I am sure you can see the difference in turning a blind eye to rapes and Jose stocking shelves illegally.

    I am not required to report him. My concerns are not politics. If the topic comes up I will mention his obligations. Christians need not be flag-waving Republicans who want all Mexicans kicked out. It is impossible to tell an illegal from an legal alien many times. If you know they are illegal, fine, tell them their responsibilities...but if you don't know, then why pry?

    Yes, I agree with Rich when he mentions confronting the "slavemaster".. if you want to confront some sin, go to this fella.


    Sin is sin, but some sin is more pitiable and there are more ameliorating factors. Because I see that there are nuances and that this is not merely black and white does not make me a justifier of any sin. I pity these lawbreakers and I can see why they do what they do.

    Do you work with people who have unpaid parking tickets? This is illegal. Are you constantly confronting people due to their known sins...probably not. There are more important things..that is all I am saying. I endorse no sin.
     
  15. Bandguy

    Bandguy Puritan Board Sophomore

    Trevor,

    Of course I see the difference. I even mentioned that in my post. My point is that they are both criminal behaviors and sin in the eyes of God. And ignoring either sin results in the oppression of not only the person in question, but many others as well.

    As has been said many times before, nobody is going on a witch hunt to find out who is illegal and who is not. The premise of this thread, however, is that we already know that he is illegal because he has confided in us that his employer (slavemaster) is abusing him and blackmaling him. I don't know if I work with anyone who has unpaid parking tickets. Nobody has confided to me about that. If I know about a sin, especially of a Christian brother, I think we have an obligation to confront them,whether we are comfortable doing so or not. Otherwise, we end up with a situation similar to the SBC where there is no discipline and everyone looks the other way for the sake of "unity" and "peace".

    Finally, when you pity the sinner by understanding why they do what they do, then you are justifying their sin, whether you recognize it or not. They don't need to be pitied. They need to be rebuked and disciplined. Any other response to open sin is indulgence and justification.
     
  16. kvanlaan

    kvanlaan Puritan Board Doctor

    OK, try this one on for size: If this is about the concept of ministering to illegals, and not just about Mexicans in the US, what about the following? This sort of thing happens all the time here. And, if it is different, then why?

    A family of North Koreans makes it into China. They are cold, penniless, and in need of food and money. They are breaking the law both in N Korea and in China by their presence in China. What do you do? Do you minister to them and show Christian compassion, feeding them, clothing them, and try to get them to the S Korean embassy in Beijing? Or do you turn them over to the civil magistrate (China) who will turn them over to the N Korean civil magistrate (Kim Jong Il) who will then imprison them (best case scenario) or use their entrails as playthings (more likely)?

    I don't know that I would want to stand in Judgment for bowing to the civil magistrate on this one.

    Granted, Mexico is a different story. But if this thread is about a concept and not a specific scenario, I don't know that I can follow the prevelant line of reasoning.

    I am the son of a legal immigrant to Canada. For the most part, I can't abide by the illegal Mexican immigration into the US. Why is it OK for Jose to walk across the border into the US while the equally desperate couple in Bosnia has to wait possibly years for form after form and pay dozens of processing fees? But surely we can't condemn the whole concept on the basis of what is going on in the Southern US.
     
  17. Bandguy

    Bandguy Puritan Board Sophomore

    Question: What would happen to this fellow if he were turned over to the South Korean Embassy? In this case, I would think it would be immoral to turn him over to an oppressive regime where he would be unjustly tortured. Of course, like you said, this is not the case in America.
     
  18. Pergamum

    Pergamum Ordinary Guy (TM)

    Bandguy:

    Listen, I don't think we disagree a great deal here. All I am saying is that in am imperfect world you cannot rebuke every sin no matter how big or little or else you would never get a rest.

    We are not always obligated to give our two cents, to give our counsel or to give our rebuke.

    Gospel ministry focuses on Christ and not mainly on obedience to civil laws.

    I am not saying that you are wrong, but when given time-limited chances with sinners, more good could be done by speaking of Christ them on rebuking an illegal and urging him to turn himself in.

    You are not wrong, I am merely arguing for keeping our priorities in line.
     
  19. etexas

    etexas Puritan Board Doctor

    I agree. I,:book2: like you do not endorse sin! But as I stated here in Texas if I asked EVERY Hispanic to show me his card, I would not have time to sleep.
     
  20. Bandguy

    Bandguy Puritan Board Sophomore


    You are correct that the first prioroty should always be with the eternal: Seek ye first the Kingdom of God. In the example cited, however, we are dealing with someone who is a converted Christian confiding in you about his illegal status and his issues with his slavemaster's abuse. In this particular case, it seems clear to me that we are obligated to rebuke sin and use Biblical discipline to bring him to repentance and stand for justice.
     
  21. Bandguy

    Bandguy Puritan Board Sophomore

    Why do you insist on misrepresenting what I have been saying by implying that I am on a witch-hunt to track down all illegal immigrants? I don't have to ask anyone to show me their card if they are confiding in me that they are here illlegally on their own. That is the premise of this thread. Where you came up with this fantasy of me going on a crusade to check all green cards, I am not sure. It is not, however, based on reality or in anything I have written.
     
  22. etexas

    etexas Puritan Board Doctor

    I, Max Crim, humbly ask that the moderators close this thread. It is VERY hot button issue, I had to reconcile with a brother over the whole issue. I live in a boarder state. The issues are complex and not as cut and dried as we could wish. For the sake of civility and continued Reformed orthodox discourse I plee a closure. Grace and Peace.
     
  23. BayouHuguenot

    BayouHuguenot Puritan Board Doctor

    Since you asked: Let me tell you what I think about the war! Ok, kidding.

    Ditto to everything Vic said.
     
  24. etexas

    etexas Puritan Board Doctor

    Main problem with this thread. It can never have ANY closure here! Look everyone got in their :2cents: But This involves a volatile combo: Politics,Theology,Philosophy,Law,Individual Conscience,State Versus Church,(oh , I can add about a dozen more factors) but in the end.......hurt feelings and no final satisfactory conclusion. No good can come from letting this go on forever. Just my:2cents:
     
  25. Semper Fidelis

    Semper Fidelis 2 Timothy 2:24-25 Staff Member

    Man, where are the ummin and thummim when you need them!
     
  26. Semper Fidelis

    Semper Fidelis 2 Timothy 2:24-25 Staff Member

    Max,

    You'll probably want to stay clear of the Politics and Government forum. Things can get pretty heated here at times. I'm not condoning it but, by and large, many learn to be more patient and to sharpen their arguments.
     
  27. etexas

    etexas Puritan Board Doctor

    I had a really nice Ummin and Thummim set! I think I lost them during our last move! Itold my wife to double check!:um:
     
  28. PuritanCovenanter

    PuritanCovenanter Moderator Staff Member

    Maybe we could glean from Paul concerning this situation.

    What do you all think about looking at Onesimus. He was a fugitive of the law and his master. He was unconverted and a thief when he ran into Paul. He was illegally at a destination that he was not suppose to be at. Philemon had every legal right to pursue Onesimus. Philemon and Paul where heirs of the Kingdom of Christ. Onesimus became one while with Paul. Did Paul send Onesimus right back to Philemon because he ran away from his master? I don't think so. Onesimus became useful to Paul. In fact Onesimus is probably responsible for the distribution of Paul's epistles. He also became a Bishop of the Church.
     
  29. Semper Fidelis

    Semper Fidelis 2 Timothy 2:24-25 Staff Member

    That is a good point. To flesh it out a bit more, though, Paul did end up having Onesimus return but he beseeched, Philemon, as a brother in the Lord, to release his legal claim to Onesimus. He called in a favor as the man who led him to the Lord as Philemon owed him all.

    There is no question that the issue is one that requires a lot of wisdom and does not lend itself to pat answers.

    Thanks for bringing up that example.
     
  30. etexas

    etexas Puritan Board Doctor

    That is good stuff! Complicated issue, no silver bullet, but for my part this a bit of scripture I had not thought to reflect on. Thank you!:think:
     
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