The flood of Central American children seeking refuge in the U.S. has stoked the immigration debate like few other events in memory. It is a true humanitarian crisis, but like everything else that has happened while President Obama is in the White House, it has also been politicized to the most ridiculous extremes by the conservative mob.
Few issues ramp up conservative xenophobia and unsubtle racism like “border security”. The chorus of right-wing crazy is particularly enjoyable when religious conservatives get involved, eager to lecture us on the proper moral response to thousands of frightened, hungry, and sick children.
Dallas megachurch Pastor Robert Jeffress was happy to oblige, pontificating from the Fox News pulpit that Jesus himself would demand no less than total and complete obedience to the law:
The Bible says in Romans 13, the government exists to protect people from evil doers, and so when we look at a Christian response, its one of compassion for those who are already here, but also a respect for the rule of law that God has ordained.
So yeah, there’s compassion and all that stuff, but obey the law, kids! Jesus said so!
Or did he? Here are ten examples of Jesus breaking laws all over Judea, and the West Bank didn’t even have a wall to keep his kind out:
1. The Laws of Biology. Jesus made quite a stir when he resurrected a dead man named Lazarus. “And he that was dead came forth…” — John 11:44.
2. The Laws of Physics. Jesus liked to go fishing with his buddies, but a boat was always optional. “And in the fourth watch of the night Jesus went unto them, walking on the sea.” — Matthew 14:25.
3. The Laws of Chemistry. Turning water into wine, without yeast or aging in a fine oak barrel? You bet! “… the ruler of the feast had tasted the water that was made wine, and knew not whence it was…” — John 2:9.
4. The Laws of Biochemistry. Jesus knew how to throw a dinner party even Hannibal Lecter could love. “And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, take, eat; this is my body. And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, drink ye all of it; for this is my blood…” — Matthew 26:26-28.
5. The Laws of Mathematics. If you thought Jesus was handy with water, he could really work wonders with food. Check out his skills with multiplication: “And he took the seven loaves and the fishes, and gave thanks, and brake them… And they did all eat, and were filled: and they took up of the broken meat that was left seven baskets full. And they that did eat were four thousand men, beside women and children.” — Matthew 15:36-38.
6. The Laws of Ayn Rand. “Jesus went into the temple, and began to cast out them that sold and bought in the temple, and overthrew the tables of the moneychangers…” — Mark 11:15.
7. The Laws of Ayn Rand, Part 2. “…sell whatsoever thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven.” — Mark 10:21.
8. The Laws of Medicine. “And Jesus put forth his hand, and touched him, saying, I will; be thou clean. And immediately his leprosy was cleansed.” — Matthew 8:3.
9. The Laws of Immigration. Jesus never asked anyone for their papers or demanded deportation. “For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me.” — Matthew 25:35.
10. The Laws of the Pharisees and the Romans. Most of the above incidents got Jesus into some serious trouble with the local authorities, including Pharisee scribes who were tight with the Roman government in Judea. According to the various New Testament accounts, many in the priesthood saw Jesus as a lawless troublemaker and blasphemer — which led him to get crucified by an eager mob. As Christians are fond of reminding us, this led to the resurrection and the redemption of humankind which is central to their faith.
But I don’t think Pastor Jeffress will be teaching any of this in Sunday school. He is too busy bearing false witness along with everyone else on Fox News.