We have heard a lot about immigration and immigrants in recent times. Recently I was reading Ezekiel in the CEB version and was awakened to how God wants us to treat the “alien” or “immigrant” that lives among us. I know we are not Israel but at least as Christians, we pray “Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” So maybe these expressions in Ezekiel supplemented by words in Leviticus and Isaiah may serve as a cautionary reminder of God’s will. Maybe we have a word to share with our country.
Ezekiel 47: 21-23
(CEB) 47:21 You will apportion this land among yourselves according to the tribes of Israel. 22 When you distribute the land as an inheritance, the immigrants who reside with you and raise families among you are considered full citizens along with the Israelites. They will receive an inheritance along with you among the tribes of Israel. 23 You will assign the immigrant’ inheritance with the tribe with whom they reside. This s what the Lord God says.
The important people of the land have practiced extortion and have committed robbery. They’ve oppressed the poor and mistreated the immigrant. They’ve oppressed and denied justice.
When immigrants live in your land with you, you must not cheat them. Any immigrant who lives with you must be treated as if they were one of your citizens. You must love them as yourself, because you were immigrants in the land of Egypt; I am the Lord your God.
The immigrants who have joined me, serving me and loving my name, becoming my servants, everyone who keeps the Sabbath without making it impure, and those who hold fast to my covenant: 7 I will bring them to my holy mountain . . .My house will be known as a house of prayer for all peoples, 8 says the Lord God, who gathers Israel’s outcasts. I will gather still others to those I have already gathered.