Immigration and Emigration
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A Bible Study! Wow!
There is a lot in the world today being spoken about Immigration, Migrants and Emigration. Immigration is when a person or a people from another country enter and live in another country which is not their own, usually and most frequently for the purpose of work and/or a better life.
When a person or people leave their own original country where they were born, they ‘emigrate’. The country receiving them calls them ‘immigrants’ or more often they are initially called ‘migrants’.
Photo Credit: This image is licensed under Creative Commons. The original image can be found here.
The Problem and the Present Western Situation
This has become a huge problem to some western countries. Some countries don’t object to people not from them (foreigners) to arrive and live in their country. Often governments are quite keen to accept some of these immigrants, professing that they will boost the national economy and pay taxes and contribute to the overall wealth and Gross Domestic Product 'GDP' of the nation, and what could be wrong with that noble goal, the politicians argue? This is overwhelmingly the present position in several parts of the Western World.
Other 'local' and original people of the nation these immigrants have come to look at these immigrants as people in some cases who can’t, don’t or won’t speak much of the local language, are frequently poorer and not well educated in some cases, do not integrate and learn the customs and history and culture of the nation of where they have arrived, and instead rather tend to separate themselves and continue with their own traditions, religions, customs, food and language. Integration into their new country and the host nation’s culture is often the last thing on their minds.
Eventually so many groups of even more nations enter a country that many of them don’t mix with the original native people and this doesn’t make for much ‘unity’ or harmony of the particular nation. Other countries which have very little immigration are just aghast and shocked that some of these western nations even allow such vast amounts (and we are talking millions) of people to enter their lands on a permanent basis!
What could eventually happen and may happen in some Western countries is that the original white and English or Gallic, Celtic or even Germanic predominantly and historically Christian peoples, who have lived there for thousands of years, may finally become ‘displaced’ themselves and become a minority, over time, in their own country!
It might be said that this is in some sense a subtle and effective form of ethnic cleansing. Why this is not discussed more urgently is surprising in itself. There are even some people who claim that this was the original plan made by certain powerful (mainly political) people a long time ago, to weaken the nationhood of countries. Certain politicians have even openly admitted this themselves!
For example, the UK Labour government in the years 2004 and onwards sent out ‘search parties’ for immigrants to get them to come to the UK, Lord Mandelson a former minister has admitted.
In a stunning confirmation that the British Blair and Brown governments deliberately engineered mass immigration, the former Cabinet Minister and spin doctor said New Labour (deliberately) sought out foreign workers.
He also conceded that the influx of arrivals meant the party’s traditional (UK) (ethnic British white) supporters are now unable to find work.
Many White European people for example have seen this 'handwriting on the wall' of ethnic cleansing and voluntarily decide to 'emigrate' out of their own country of birth themselves, often to other predominantly white, English speaking countries or enclaves around the world. This is in a sense, one could easily claim, a 'forced' emigration.
Politicians of their own countries generally don’t count this exodus or Diaspora as being of much importance. It would be highly interesting to see how many white Anglo-Saxon heritage people for example have emigrated out of the United Kingdom in the last 50 years and have gone to other white Anglo-Saxon nations around the world. (That would be emigrating from the UK to Canada, Australia, New Zealand, USA, and perhaps Hong Kong and other British Overseas Territories)
Important countries like China or Russia or India or Turkey, Indonesia and most others, could never even countenance such a situation in the first place. To sell out their own country so that they-- the Chinese, Russians, Indians, Turks or Indonesians etc, would over time become minorities in their own historical heartlands! You can be sure they would never do that.
Equally this phenomenon among some western nations appears very much like seems a historical equivalent of Esau in the Bible selling his own birthright.
Genesis 25:31 -- And Jacob said, Sell me this day thy birthright.
Genesis 25:32 -- And Esau said, Behold, I am at the point to die: and what profit shall this birthright do to me?
Genesis 25:33 -- And Jacob said, Swear to me this day; and he sware unto him: and he sold his birthright unto Jacob.
Genesis 25:34 -- Then Jacob gave Esau bread and pottage of lentiles; and he did eat and drink, and rose up, and went his way: thus Esau despised his birthright.
Hebrews 12:16 -- Lest there be any fornicator, or profane person, as Esau, who for one morsel of meat sold his birthright.
I was thinking about this the other day from a Biblical perspective and I learned some very amazing and shocking things from the Lord that I never realised before. I hope you will find it fascinating. Why for example do I sometimes feel so outraged at some facets of immigration?
There are plenty of examples in the Bible where God’s person or prophet or God’s people went to another country. They emigrated and were immigrants in another country just as we described above.
However, the fascinating fact about this though, is that although they emigrated, almost all of them only emigrated according to the will of God or commandment of God, or the situation God Himself engineered where they had to leave their own country through no other choice of their own.
It is highly important to note that as far as we can see from the Bible, none of God’s people chose by themselves to uproot and go to another country for financial gain or because they were fed up in their homeland or that they wanted a ‘better life’.
Here are a few examples of all the above points:
God Himself told Abraham to emigrate to the Promised Land, the land of Canaan and promised him it would be his land and his descendents forever.
Genesis 12:1 -- Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, unto a land that I will shew thee:
Genesis 12:2 -- And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing:
Genesis 12:3 -- And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.
Genesis 12:4 -- So Abram departed, as the LORD had spoken unto him; and Lot went with him: and Abram was seventy and five years old when he departed out of Haran.
Genesis 12:5 -- And Abram took Sarai his wife, and Lot his brother's son, and all their substance that they had gathered, and the souls that they had gotten in Haran; and they went forth to go into the land of Canaan; and into the land of Canaan they came.
Joseph, through no real fault of his own, but through the fore-planning and divine will of God, was set on a course of forced emigration into Egypt from the land of Canaan. Here in the will of God he prospered and became the second ruler over ancient Egypt. This event of immigration was prophesied beforehand that eventually his whole people would be immigrants in the land of Egypt for 400 hundred years, after which they would emigrate back to their original land God had promised to Abraham their father.
Genesis 15:13 -- And he (God) said unto Abram, Know of a surety that thy seed shall be a stranger in a land that is not theirs, and shall serve them; and they shall afflict them four hundred years;
Exodus 12:40 -- Now the sojourning of the children of Israel, who dwelt in Egypt, was four hundred and thirty years.
Exodus -- 12:41 And it came to pass at the end of the four hundred and thirty years, even the selfsame day it came to pass, that all the hosts of the LORD went out from the land of Egypt.
Moses fled from Egypt and his worldly inheritance as the (adopted) son of Pharaoh’s daughter to the land of Midian as a refugee. He had no choice but to escape. This was God’s will for him in preparation to becoming His anointed prophet. (see Exodus chapters 1-3) 4.
Daniel was forced to emigrate and live in Babylon because he was a child of the captivity, a refugee. God prospered him there in His Will. (See Daniel chapter 1)
Mary and Joseph
Mary and Joseph, the parents of Jesus Christ the Saviour were directed specifically to ‘flee into Egypt’ for a short time, (briefly emigrate quickly!), after which they were directed again by God to return to their own country of Israel. They eventually settled in another town in their home country. They didn’t stay as immigrants in (wealthier) Egypt as this was not the Will of God for them.
Sometimes it is wiser to stay where you are
1. God told Isaac specifically during a severe famine not to go down to Egypt (where everyone else was ‘trending’ to go and where there was sufficient food). Isaac didn’t ‘go with the flow’ into Egypt. He stayed where he was in his own country, the country God had promised him through his promise to his father Abraham. He prospered there against all odds and ‘expanded in recession’, as economists like to say! You can be sure the natural and prevailing wisdom was for most people to go down to Egypt which was richer, more stable, had a much higher GDP and had probably far more opportunity for work. etc.
Genesis 26:2 -- And the LORD appeared unto him (Isaac), and said, Go not down into Egypt; dwell in the land which I shall tell thee of:
Genesis 26:3 -- Sojourn in this land, (Canaan) and I will be with thee, and will bless thee; for unto thee, and unto thy seed, I will give all these countries, and I will perform the oath which I sware (promised with an oath) unto Abraham thy father;
Genesis 26:4 -- And I will make thy seed to multiply as the stars of heaven, and will give unto thy seed all these countries; and in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed;
Genesis 26:5 -- Because that Abraham obeyed my voice, and kept my charge, my commandments, my statutes, and my laws.
Genesis 26:6 -- And Isaac dwelt in Gerar: (He stayed where God told him).
2. Jeremiah chose to stay in his home country of Israel after its defeat by the Babylonians, although he had the option to go and live in Babylon, the superpower of the day in far better economic conditions.
Jeremiah 40:1 -- The word that came to Jeremiah from the LORD, after that Nebuzaradan the (Babylonian) captain of the guard had let him go from Ramah, when he had taken him being bound in chains among all that were carried away captive of Jerusalem and Judah, which were carried away captive unto Babylon.
Jeremiah 40:2 -- And the captain of the guard took Jeremiah, and said unto him, The LORD thy God hath pronounced this evil upon this place.
Jeremiah 40:3 -- Now the LORD hath brought it, and done according as he hath said: because ye (the nation of Israel) have sinned against the LORD, and have not obeyed his voice, therefore this thing is come upon you.
Jeremiah 40:4 -- And now, behold, I loose thee this day from the chains which were upon thine hand. If it seem good unto thee to come with me into Babylon, come; and I will look well unto thee: but if it seem ill unto thee to come with me into Babylon, forbear: behold, all the land is before thee: whither it seemeth good and convenient for thee to go, thither go.
Jeremiah 40:5 -- ...or go wheresoever it seemeth convenient unto thee to go. So the captain of the guard gave him victuals and a reward, and let him go.
Jeremiah 40:6 -- Then went Jeremiah unto Gedaliah the son of Ahikam to Mizpah; and dwelt with him among the people that were left in the land.
3. Jeremiah advises the remnant of Judah to stay in the land of Judah.
Perhaps the most amazing and shocking story which we really don’t hear enough about in teaching is the very clear story of the state of the Jews after the destruction of Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar, King of Babylon (in 607 B.C)
I find this passage remarkable, The Babylonian king 'left a remnant' of the Jews, mostly poor, in the land of Israel. After some form of power struggle in the immediate aftermath, the main leaders of the Jews specifically came to Jeremiah to get direction from God where to go and where to settle. Should they specifically emigrate to Egypt or stay where they were? (See the whole of Jeremiah chapter 42 and 43)
In Jeremiah 42:7 and on Jeremiah tells them specifically not to go to wealthy Egypt, but rather specifically to stay in their own country. He warned them not to lean to their own understanding or fears about war, hunger and the ability to 'get bread' which obviously seemed much easier to 'get' in Egypt.
The funny thing to me is that the Jews swore up and down that whatever Jeremiah told them from the Lord they would do it, ‘whether good or evil’ (42:6). Yet as soon as they heard the word of God, as usual they rebelled against it and accused the prophet of being false and politically motivated! (43:2-3)
So there it was,-- a clear message to God’s people (at the time) not to follow the trend of emigrating to a wealthier nation, a powerful consequential warning for them not to base their decisions on fears or finances or wealth, but rather in hearing what God wanted them to do!
Did they listen? Not at all! And I think this passage more than many others on the topic of immigration and emigration shows very clearly how all of God’s people should act when considering moving or not moving to other countries.
Examples in the Bible of people emigrating for financial reasons and failing
In another later era of the Bible Elimelech, and his two sons Mahlon and Chilion from Bethelem in Judah were a few of the people who decided they should escape the present famine in their home country, Israel.
It turns out that both the father died and his two sons in the land they decided to emigrate to! (All the males died and three females were left).
Eventually his wife and her two daughters-in-law had to retrace their steps and go back to the (Jewish) mother’s homeland, arriving just about destitute and having lost both her sons!
In this case the Lord worked it out for good in the end but only after they had returned to the Matriarch’s original country.
Ruth 1:1 -- Now it came to pass in the days when the judges ruled, that there was a famine in the land. And a certain man of Bethlehemjudah went to sojourn in the country of Moab, he, and his wife, and his two sons.
Ruth 1:2 -- And the name of the man was Elimelech, and the name of his wife Naomi, and the name of his two sons Mahlon and Chilion, Ephrathites of Bethlehemjudah. And they came into the country of Moab, and continued there.
Ruth 1:3 -- And Elimelech Naomi's husband died; and she was left, and her two sons.
Ruth 1:4 -- And they took them wives of the women of Moab; the name of the one was Orpah, and the name of the other Ruth: and they dwelled there about ten years.
Ruth 1:5 -- And Mahlon and Chilion died also both of them; and the woman was left of her two sons and her husband.
(See the entire four chapters of the Book of Ruth for the full exciting picture).
So we can see very clearly in the Bible that there was never (unless I have missed something!) or at least I can accurately say rarely a successful case of emigration into another land unless or except it was by the will or specific direction of God.
Those few cases where people decided by themselves for whatever reason to go to another country and become immigrants all failed, and they just initially moved by leaning to their own understanding without prayer and asking God!
This last point, I think, is really a revelation. What could this mean to us?-- that when we decide to go to another country other than where we were born simply for the promise of a ‘better job’ or to be more financially secure, then it is very likely we may very well be completely out of God’s will from the beginning. This seems abundantly clear from the Bible. We could easily be outside the blessing and will of God.
Not only that, but almost as important, is that you are not genuinely contributing to the wealth and harmony of that new country you find yourself in because you have gone for no other motive except your own selfish one, rather than a Godly one as those righteous Bible characters above.
You are therefore also a part of the problem in the forced emigration of the native population and part of its ethnic cleansing spoken of in the beginning.
It can in fact be claimed that you are weakening your host country’s resources and stability. Consider these verses:
Job 15:23 -- He wandereth abroad for bread, saying, Where is it? he knoweth that the day of darkness** is ready at his hand. (**misery, destruction, ignorance)
Proverbs 27:8 -- As a bird that wandereth from her nest, so is a man that wandereth from his place. (The reason you may feel lost and unsettled in a new land, is because God did not call you there. You have wandered from your place and roots)
Read Job 15:24-33 for a real shock!
Exceptions to the 'curse of emigrating'
Christians and missionaries are called to go to other countries and live there but this is due to the will of God for them. They are therefore completely 100% exempt from both immigration and emigration! Praise the Lord. We missionaries and Christians can go anywhere in full peace and reassurance! As far as I can see from the Bible we are the only group to whom God gives exemption from the problem of emigrating, in fact he encourages it and us to:
Mark 16:15 -- And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.
Matthew 28:18 -- And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.
Matthew 28:19 -- Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:
Matthew 28:20 -- Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.
We are to call nowhere on earth our real home as we are just passing through this earth, this is plain to see from the Bible of which there are many verses, here are a fraction of hundreds.
Genesis 47:7 -- And Joseph brought in Jacob his father, and set him before Pharaoh: and Jacob blessed Pharaoh.
Genesis 47:8 -- And Pharaoh said unto Jacob, How old art thou?
Genesis 47:9 -- And Jacob said unto Pharaoh, The days of the years of my pilgrimage are an hundred and thirty years: few and evil have the days of the years of my life been, and have not attained unto the days of the years of the life of my fathers in the days of their pilgrimage.
Hebrews 11:13 -- These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of them, and embraced them, and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth.
Hebrews 11:14 -- For they that say such things declare plainly that they seek a country.
Hebrews 11:15 -- And truly, if they had been mindful of that country from whence they came out, they might have had opportunity to have returned. Heb 11:8 By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he went.
Hebrews 11:9 -- By faith he sojourned in the land of promise, as in a strange country, dwelling in tabernacles with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise:
Hebrews 11:10 For he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God.
1Pe_2:11 -- Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul;
Psalm 90:1 -- A Prayer of Moses the man of God. Lord, thou hast been our dwelling place in all generations.
1 Peter 1:17 -- And if ye call on the Father, who without respect of persons judgeth according to every man's work, pass the time of your sojourning here in fear:
It’s not my fault
If you find yourself in another country which your parents chose to come to possibly completely outside of the will of God, this exonerates you. You should feel free to grow up there. The Bible clearly says that the son shall not suffer for the sin(s) of the father.
Ezekiel 18:17 -- ...he shall not die for the iniquity of his father, he shall surely live. (This is just one of many verses.)
God has already given you a fresh start and will deal and handle your life according to your own choices. However you may in some cases wish to return to the land of your fathers through your bloodline. It may be better for you to ‘return’, but you yourself would have to pray and ask the Lord about it.
The bottom line of ‘Immigration’ today in the western world is that God is allowing it. The powerful white former colonial nations are being inundated with immigrants of various religions and a myriad of races! However we should not confuse ‘God is allowing it’ with ‘Does he approve of it’? He approves of it only in the sense of it being somehow allowed by Him in the Master Chess Game of the Endtime, because He knows that one day ‘the kingdoms of this world will become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ.’ In the long run in one sense, it doesn’t really matter.
There is meanwhile, while we wait for that day a significant amount of injustice going on, but that injustice won’t last forever, praise God.
True Immigration and Emigration
Wherever we find ourselves today, the most important thing is to belong to God’s kingdom, where there is no nationality or other blood, only the ‘blood of Jesus’.
Acts 17:26 -- And hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation;
Acts 17:27 -- That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him, and find him, though he be not far from every one of us:
Eventually in human history all the nations and kingdoms of the world as we know them will be transformed into one nation as indicated by Revelation 11:15 which says:
Revelation 11:15 -- And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever.
At that time there will be no immigration or emigration except those people who enter into the Kingdom of God or not. There will only be two destinations. Your Heavenly passport assures you of getting into the Heavenly Kingdom. It’s definitely got a lot of benefits and you will be there just because you got a free passport because of the Love of God and His Son and your belief.
You won’t need to feel guilty anymore that you have selfishly gone to another country to access their limited resources. You also won’t be resented by the local indigenous populations nor discriminated against, nor will you discriminate against others. It will be a perfect arrangement in the future. So why not get ready today? Forget all the other earthly kingdoms and stop trying to save your flesh and financial security. God isn’t going to bless it in most cases!
May God bless you and help you to make Godly choices for the benefit of your family.
COPYRIGHT Jerry Finch May 2016