The National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference held a conference in Houston, and guess what, amnesty was on the agenda. According to Jerome Corsi of World Net Daily:
Several different Hispanic evangelical leaders speaking at the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference in Houston this week argued a biblical basis for the Obama administration’s push to grant legal status to millions of illegal immigrants currently in the United States.
Since the Bible never endorses illegal alien amnesty, saying that it does requires some - how shall we say? - creative interpretation skills. But evangelical open borders boosters don't shy away from doing just that.
NHCLC president Samuel Rodriguez (of whom I've written before, see here
) had some pronouncements to make:
“We have been disappointed by both Republicans and Democrats,” Rev. Samuel Rodriguez, president of the NHCLC, explained to reporters. “It’s about our Christian faith. It’s about Matthew 25 and Leviticus 19. It’s about finding a way where we can reconcile Romans 13, ‘respecting the rule of law.’
As I said above, "creative interpretation skills". Also, Rodriguez engaged in some rather amazing double talk.
We are not supporting amnesty as an organization. We’re not in favor of open borders. We believe the United States is a sovereign nation that has the right and responsibility to secure our borders.
Really? Then why aren't you opposing Amnesty? Well, here is his explanation:
We are concerned that there are millions of people in this nation where we look the other way, and we believe it is hypocritical to separate families, to deport a mom or a dad and leave the children behind. We need to find a way to integrate as expeditiously as possible those who have been here that are not dependent on government subsidies, but are depending on the good things God has placed in each one of their lives, that are adhering to the law with the exception of entering the country illegally.” Arguing for a legislative solution, Rodriguez called upon the Republican majority in Congress to work with President Obama in passing comprehensive immigration reform.
The Southern Baptist convention, which is pro-amnesty, had a representative adding his two cents' worth:
Barrett Duke, vice president for public policy research and director of the Research Institute for the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, shared Rodriguez’s view. “Southern Baptists share the concern for immigrants already among us,” he said. “Southern Baptists first ask if we can get some clear guidance from Scripture on the immigration question. This was important as well for me. I initially related to immigration reform like a lot of the people who are opposed to immigration reform, believing illegal immigrants have come to the United States violating U.S. laws, are staying here either by overstaying their visas or on fraudulent documents. My gut for a pure sense of justice was that all illegal immigrants should be deported.”
So Duke used to think the law should be enforced. Imagine that! But then he changed his mind.
Duke explained his views changed after consulting the Bible. “Leviticus 19:34 says, ‘But the stranger that dwelleth with you shall be unto you as one born among you, and thou shalt love him as thyself …” Duke said, citing the Old Testament. “In Matthew 25:35, in the New Testament, Jesus says, ‘I was a stranger, and ye took me in.’ Whether you look at the Old Testament or the New Testament, you get the same message. I had to let God work in my life as I thought about this particular question. As God worked in my life, it became apparent to me that God wanted me to work in a way that was compassionate and understanding and loving toward these 11 million undocumented people who, other than the fact that they came here or are here illegally, are law-abiding, family-oriented people.
It seems that all these guys have to arrive to the conclusion that there is no way these people can return to their home countries. Can Christians not help the needy in foreign countries?
“These are people who are contributing to society, supporting themselves and raising families. You can’t possibly be Christian to send them back to hostile environments where many do not even speak the language if they were born here. There may be no jobs for them back there.
Funny you should mention that. There are people right here in the U.S. who don't have jobs. Do you care about them?
Duke is very judgmental towards those who don't agree with his holier-than-thou amnesty agenda.
I don’t see how we can call ourselves Christian if we don’t deal with these people in a compassionate way, securing the borders, but allowing the 11 million undocumented already here to remain her legally by putting them on a path to legal status that ends up in citizenship.”
There was even a government official on hand to join in the Amnesty cheerleading. Hey, what about "Separation of Church and State"?
Also speaking at the NHCLC conference was León Rodriguez, director of the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, USCIS, who agreed that Christian compassion required finding a solution to provide legal status to the 11 million illegal immigrants currently in the United States. “My parents and grandparents came from Cuba where they were fleeing Fidel Castro’s dictatorship,” Rodriguez explained in a press conference prior to his speech.Hispanic Evangelicals Argue Biblical Case for Amnesty Jerome Corsi, World Net Daily
Also on hand to speak was Jeb Bush (with his parents in the audience). Bush spoke on April 29th. According to Click2Houston's Kelci Johnston,
[Jeb Bush] took the opportunity to talk family and faith as well as the issue of immigration.
And what was Jeb's policy prescription?
"We have to fix a broken immigration system here in this country," said Bush.Jeb Bush speaks at National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference in Houston
Kelci Johnston, Click2Houston, April 29, 2015