Borders are a reality of human history and society. They define the territories and jurisdictions of different nations, cultures, and peoples. But what does the Bible say about borders? Are they compatible with God’s plan and purpose for humanity? How should Christians view and relate to borders and the people who cross them?
In this article, I will explore some biblical principles and perspectives on borders and immigration. I will argue that borders are not inherently evil or sinful, but rather reflect God’s design for human diversity and order. I will also suggest that borders have both positive and negative aspects, and that Christians should balance justice, compassion, and stewardship in their approach to immigration issues.
Borders in the Bible
The Bible does not explicitly endorse or condemn borders, but it does acknowledge their existence and significance. The first mention of borders is in Genesis 10, where the descendants of Noah are listed according to their clans, languages, lands, and nations (Genesis 10:5, 20, 31). This chapter shows that God is the ultimate source of human diversity and dispersion, as he confuses the languages of the people at Babel and scatters them over the face of the earth (Genesis 11:1-9). God’s intention is to create a variety of peoples and cultures, each with their own identity and domain.
The Bible also shows that God is involved in the establishment and change of borders throughout history. He promises to give Abraham and his descendants a specific land with clear boundaries (Genesis 15:18-21). He judges and removes wicked nations from their lands and gives them to Israel or other peoples (Deuteronomy 2:1-23; Joshua 12:1-24; Psalm 78:55). He also disciplines Israel by allowing them to be invaded and exiled by foreign powers when they disobey him (2 Kings 17:1-23; 25:1-21; Jeremiah 25:8-14). He restores them to their land after a period of repentance and restoration (Ezra 1:1-4; Nehemiah 2:1-8; Isaiah 49:8-13). He predicts and controls the rise and fall of empires and their boundaries (Daniel 2:36-45; 7:1-28; Acts 17:26).
These examples show that God has a sovereign plan for human history and geography. He assigns different lands to different peoples according to his wisdom and justice. He also holds nations accountable for their actions and attitudes toward him and other peoples. Borders are not arbitrary or permanent, but rather reflect God’s providential rule over the world.
Borders in the Christian Perspective
As Christians, how should we view and relate to borders today? Here are some principles and perspectives that may help us:
– Borders are a part of God’s common grace. Common grace is God’s kindness to all people, regardless of their faith or morality. He gives them life, health, food, rain, sun, beauty, skills, talents, conscience, government, law, order, etc. (Matthew 5:45; Acts 14:15-17; Romans 2:14-15; 13:1-7). Borders are one way that God provides order and stability for human society. They help prevent chaos, conflict, violence, and injustice. They also protect human dignity and diversity by allowing different peoples to have their own space and identity.
– Borders are not absolute or ultimate. While borders are a part of God’s common grace, they are not a part of his saving grace. Saving grace is God’s special favor to those who believe in Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. He forgives their sins, adopts them as his children, gives them his Spirit, makes them part of his church, transforms them into his image, and prepares them for his eternal kingdom (Ephesians 2:1-10; John 1:12-13; Romans 8:9-17; 1 Corinthians 12:12-27; Colossians 3:9-10; Revelation 21:1-4). Borders do not define or determine our identity or destiny as Christians. We are citizens of heaven first and foremost (Philippians 3:20). We belong to a global family of brothers and sisters in Christ who transcend national, ethnic, cultural, linguistic, and social boundaries (Galatians 3:26-29).
How do we protect our borders? It starts with the family unit.
How Christians Are Called to Protect the Family?
The family is a sacred institution that God has ordained from the beginning of creation. It is the basic unit of society and the primary place where we learn about God’s love, grace, and truth. The family is also under constant attack from the enemy, who seeks to destroy it and undermine its purpose. Therefore, Christians have a responsibility to protect the family and uphold its values in a world that is hostile to them.
But how can we protect the family? What does the Bible say about this important topic? Here are some principles that can guide us as we seek to honor God and serve our families.
1. Protect the family by loving God and obeying his commands. Jesus said that the greatest commandment is to love God with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength (Mark 12:30). When we love God, we will also love his word and his will. We will seek to follow his commands and teach them to our children (Deuteronomy 6:4-9). We will also avoid anything that dishonors God or leads us away from him (1 John 2:15-17).
2. Protect the family by loving one another as Christ loved us. Jesus also said that the second greatest commandment is to love our neighbor as ourselves (Mark 12:31). This includes our family members, who are our closest neighbors. We are called to love them with a selfless, sacrificial, and unconditional love that reflects Christ’s love for us (Ephesians 5:1-2). We are also called to forgive one another as God has forgiven us (Colossians 3:13), and to bear one another’s burdens (Galatians 6:2).
3. Protect the family by respecting the roles and responsibilities that God has assigned to each member. God has designed the family with a specific order and structure that reflects his wisdom and authority. He has given the husband the role of being the head of the wife and the leader of the home (Ephesians 5:23). He has given the wife the role of being the helper and supporter of her husband and the nurturer of her children (Genesis 2:18; Titus 2:4-5). He has given the children the role of being obedient and respectful to their parents (Ephesians 6:1-3).
4. Protect the family by praying for one another and with one another. Prayer is a powerful weapon that we have against the schemes of the devil (Ephesians 6:18). We should pray for one another regularly, interceding for each other’s needs, challenges, and spiritual growth (James 5:16). We should also pray with one another, cultivating a habit of family worship and devotion (Joshua 24:15). Prayer will strengthen our faith, deepen our love, and unite our hearts.
5. Protect the family by being a witness and a blessing to others. The family is not only a place where we receive God’s blessings, but also a place where we share God’s blessings with others. We are called to be salt and light in the world, shining forth God’s glory and grace through our words and deeds (Matthew 5:13-16). We are also called to be hospitable, generous, and compassionate to those who are in need, especially those who belong to the household of faith (Hebrews 13:2; Galatians 6:10).
As Christians, we have a high calling to protect the family as God’s precious gift and plan for humanity. Let us not take this responsibility lightly, but rather strive to fulfill it faithfully by his grace and power.
How Christians Are to Protect the Nation
As Christians, we are called to be good citizens and to honor those in authority over us (Romans 13:1-7). But what does that mean in a time when our nation is facing many challenges and threats, both internally and externally? How can we protect our nation as followers of Christ?
One way we can protect our nation is by praying for it. The Bible tells us to pray for all people, especially for kings and those in high positions, so that we may live peaceful and godly lives (1 Timothy 2:1-4). We can pray for God’s wisdom, guidance, protection, and blessing over our nation and its leaders. We can pray for God’s will to be done in our nation as it is in heaven (Matthew 6:10). We can pray for God’s peace and justice to prevail in our nation and in the world (Psalm 72:1-4).
Another way we can protect our nation is by living out our faith in the public sphere. The Bible tells us to let our light shine before others, so that they may see our good works and glorify our Father in heaven (Matthew 5:16). We can protect our nation by being salt and light in our society, influencing it for good and resisting evil (Matthew 5:13-14). We can protect our nation by being ambassadors for Christ, reconciling people to God and to each other (2 Corinthians 5:18-20). We can protect our nation by being peacemakers, seeking to overcome evil with good (Romans 12:17-21).
A third way we can protect our nation is by supporting its institutions and values. The Bible tells us to render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s (Mark 12:17). We can protect our nation by respecting its laws and paying its taxes, as long as they do not contradict God’s commands (Acts 5:29). We can protect our nation by honoring its traditions and symbols, such as the flag and the anthem, as expressions of gratitude and patriotism. We can protect our nation by upholding its ideals and principles, such as freedom, democracy, human rights, and equality.
In summary, we can protect our nation as Christians by praying for it, living out our faith in it, and supporting its institutions and values. By doing so, we are fulfilling our dual citizenship in heaven and on earth (Philippians 3:20). By doing so, we are showing love for God and love for our neighbor (Matthew 22:37-39). By doing so, we are seeking the welfare of the city where God has placed us (Jeremiah 29:7).