Immigration and the Gathering of Israel

Immigration and the Gathering of IsraelMuch has been said in suggesting solutions to the challenges we are facing with immigration.  I would like to offer a biblically inspired, constitutionally compatible, real solution; as well as a few prophetic insights at the end.

First of all, we need to define who the enemy is not.  The enemy is not the Hispanics, in or out of the United States, legal or otherwise.  The enemy is not any ethnicity or nationality.

The enemy is the current system which encourages illegal immigration, crime, fraud, bankrupt socialism, and animosity between misunderstood parties of people.  In short, the enemy is our own government.

Let’s face it.  We are all human beings.  We are all children of our Father in Heaven.  We are brothers and sisters who have equal claim upon the blessings of our Father in Heaven as conditional upon our faith and obedience to His laws.  The riches of his earth belong to all of God’s children according to their industry.  Individuals and governments do not own the earth, they are guardians and stewards.  Those who wish to immigrate have a right to do so; especially when immigration becomes a mortal necessity.

We are all in the same boat.  We all want the same things: peace, happiness, posterity, prosperity, and the secured rights of life, liberty, property, and the pursuit of happiness.

Actually, maybe that’s not entirely true.  I keep stumbling across liberals and neocons who seem all too willing to give up these rights in exchange for security and forced equality.  But without the protection of these rights, these people will soon be eliminated anyway—so I’m not going to worry about them.

Anyhow, the bottom line is that all sane people (those who are not suicidal, who care about protecting their rights) want the same things, as previously mentioned.

Those who are unable to get what they feel they need where they live, have no other option than to move or to immigrate.  Where ones right to life is threatened, it becomes a matter of survival to immigrate, if possible. If it becomes impossible to provide the necessities of life because ones right to property is denied, immigration may likewise become necessary as a precaution for survival.

In Book of Mormon times, the Nephites and Lamanites enjoyed an open border policy.  Especially in times of peace, they had free intercourse one with another, to buy and sell, trade, and settle according to their desires (Helaman 6:8).  They did not worry about defending their borders except in times of war.

National, state, and municipal borders are a necessity for establishing legal jurisdictions.  When one crosses a border, different laws are in effect and different government agents have jurisdiction.

In times of war, borders are justifiably secured.  In times of peace they should remain monitored, but open.

Immigrants who break the law, who are not productive, who parasitically plunder the system, who refuse to naturalize, these should be prosecuted and sentenced according to the laws of the land, and as necessary deported back to their countries of origin.  Immigrants who have been deported because of their crimes, who return and commit serious crimes again, these should be executed according to the laws of the land.

When laws are passed which make it difficult to immigrate legally, desperate people will still feel they have no choice but to immigrate anyway, legal or not, for their own safety and wellbeing.

I have known and loved many people who have come into this country “illegally”.  They are my brothers and sisters.  They are good, respectable people.  I cannot condemn them for what they have done.  If I were in their shoes, I would do the same.

A big part of the problem we are facing is Socialism in America.  The forced redistribution of wealth is patently unconstitutional, unethical, obstructive to prosperity, and is a violation of mankind’s rights to life, liberty, and property—all three are interconnected.  We have no reason to resent “illegal immigrants” who draw on the unethical benefits of Socialism any more than we have reason to resent “legal parasites” who do the same.  The problem here is not immigration, legal or otherwise, the problem is Socialism.

Many people do not realize that most “illegal immigrants” pay taxes just as we do.  Their employers pay taxes on their labors.  The immigrants also pay taxes even if their social security numbers are fraudulent.  They are paying into the system and increasing the national product.  The vast majority of these people would far rather do everything openly, pay their taxes properly, and live above board.  If individuals choose not to pay their taxes, it is because they are dishonest, not because they are “illegal immigrants”.

Additionally, most “illegal immigrants” are very hard working, law abiding, careful citizens.  They pay their bills on time (because they have to), they stay out of dept (because they have to), and they do everything as correctly as possible in order to stay out of trouble.

They also do all they can to care for their own.  They love their families and work hard to support them.  They save all they can to help their family and friends immigrate who have not been able to do so.  These are good people who have a lot to contribute to life and society in America.

Of course, immigrants who do not keep the law, who do not work to provide for themselves, and who are hostile to America and to the republic should be deported.  As to the rest of them, we should welcome them with open arms.

We need to fix the system, not chop off heads or send them packing back to their homelands.

The issue of illegal immigrants abusing our socialistic programs has nothing to do with immigration; it has everything to do with Socialism, which never should have been and needs to be abolished.

The issue of illegal immigrants who commit crime has nothing to do with immigration.  It has everything to do with law enforcement, our legal system, and of how we prosecute criminal offences.  Obviously, those who commit crimes, legal or illegal, should be disciplined and punished accordingly, even to the extent of execution or deportation, as necessary.  These are biblically consistent principles (per the Law of Moses, the Book of Mormon system of judges, etc…).  To say our horrific crime statistics are caused by illegal immigration is just as unfair as saying all Blacks are murders and all Hispanics are thieves, just because a few of them are, just as some Whites are too.  This kind of bigotry needs to end.

The issue of illegal immigrants who work for drug cartels, has nothing to do with immigration; it has everything to do with a “war on drugs” which is actually a “war for drugs” administrated by our own government in order to finance certain illegal activities which cannot receive funds appropriated by congress which would require congressional oversight.

The issue of globalists using illegal immigration as a tool to dissolve national borders and destroy national sovereignty has nothing to do with immigration; it has everything to do with globalist conspiracies and secret societies combined to overthrow the liberty of all lands.  By all means, attack the globalists; throw out the Socialists, Fascists, and Communists; but do not lay this evil at the feet of those poor souls who simply want to immigrate to a land of greater liberty and opportunity.

If we think immigrants are ignorant and are supporting bad political policy, then we should take steps to educate them properly.  Most of these are humble people who are willing to learn anything they can about how to be law abiding, prosperous, happy people.  They want to learn from us.

It is time for all of us, as Christians, to reach out and extend the olive branch to our brothers and sisters throughout the world who simply love what America stands for, who want to come here.  They deserve our love, our respect, our friendship, and our support.

As Latter Day Saints, we should be offering to the world the Everlasting Gospel, which includes the Law of Liberty.  As the kings and queens spoken of in Isaiah, we should reach out to these people, assist them, draw them in, love them, place them upon our shoulders and carry them.  These are the people who will build ZION, even gathered Israel; and some day it will be our privilege, if we are faithful, to assist them in building that Holy City.

About Jared Eastley

Jared Eastley is the creator of the blog, Reflections in Zion
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15 Responses to Immigration and the Gathering of Israel

  1. Melinda Sandberg says:

    Since the church has established 12 temples in Mexico alone they are not coming here for the gospel. They are being told to come here by the corrupt Mexican government advertising free education and healthcare in America. Maps are printed and the pathway made clear. They are falling victim to the sales pitch of the evil Coyotes that paint rosy pictures of a land of milk and honey and then rape the women, kidnap the children for ransom and hold them all of them half starved and thirsty in the drop houses until they deliver their cargo to their final destinations. Their dollars sent home are the largest form of income next to oil exports. Supporting illegal immigration facilitates all of the above inhumane activities and many more.

    We are at war with the Islamic terrorists who are training the drug cartels in their beheading and murder to intimidate methods and bringing them to our very borders. Sounds like war to me.

    We have illegals from the Mideast in our Arizona prisons and evidence of their passage in the desert is abundant. Sleeper cells have found easy access to the USA along these same routes. They pose as Latinos having learned to speak some Spanish by their paid cartel travel advisors and escorts who also provide them with stolen identities and documentation. Support of illegal immigration supports these modern Gadianton Robbers we were warned of by Mormon.

    You reference the constitution. The Constitution of the United States inspired by God (D&C 109:54) says one of the main reasons for a federal government is to provide for the common defense. I agree the socialist institutions of the past 100 years have corrupted our country, maybe beyond repair but there is no reason to lay down and give up the sovereignty of the nation that Heavenly Father inspired and established for light to the world and a birthplace for the restoration of his gospel.

    Why should celebrate those that say to their bishops that they are honest in their dealings while at the same time possessing of stolen identities, commit loan fraud, welfare fraud and vote in our elections without the right to do so. These are not victimless actions.

    They are being taught that America stole their culture and their land and they are demonstrating publically to have the white English speaking European descendents leave while embracing the descendants of the white Spanish speakers as legitimate. Somehow the cruel conquistadors faded into history while those seeking religious freedom and new opportunity in North America are recast as evil capitalists corrupting the poor.

    When the prophet calls us to gather to build New Jerusalem we can welcome them. Until then, we are told to grow where we are planted. Elder Russel M. Nelson said in Oct 2006 Conference in a talk titled “Gathering of Scattered Israel” “The Lord has decreed the establishment of Zion in each realm where He has given His Saints their birth and nationality. Scripture foretells that the people “shall be gathered home to the lands of their inheritance, and shall be established in all their lands of promise.” “Every nation is the gathering place for its own people.” The place of gathering for Brazilian Saints is in Brazil; the place of gathering for Nigerian Saints is in Nigeria; the place of gathering for Korean Saints is in Korea; and so forth. Zion is “the pure in heart.” Zion is wherever righteous Saints are.

    http://lds.org/general-conference/2006/10/the-gathering-of-scattered-israel?lang=eng&query=gathering+zion+russell+m+nelson

    • Jared says:

      Sister Sandberg,

      You bring up very good and valid points of which I am very aware. Of course, my article is addressing the issue on a very idealistic level. I certainly agree that we should oppose criminal elements and acts of war and conspiracy. I am not in favor of illegal immigration. As stated, “the enemy is our own government” and foreign governments that confuse, contort, manipulate, and destroy in order to achieve their own hellish objectives. We are all being used, manipulated and betrayed here. I just see no reason to vilify the thousands of immigrants who do have good motives for coming here.

      The real problem is that we are not following the Constitution. If we did, then that would fix most of our national difficulties.

  2. Arienne says:

    Good one, Brother Taylor! Some may say that… ha ha ha. I don’t think their opinions are diametrically opposed, though. They are simply focused on different peoples. Brother Eastley focuses on the good-intentioned, and Sister Sandburg focuses on the deceived and the wicked.

  3. AC says:

    I’m leaning towards Sister Sandburg’s post. Until illegal aliens have obtained citizenship, they’re breaking the law. Bottom line.

  4. Jared says:

    The LDS Church calls illegal immigrants as full time missionaries within the U.S. Someone explain that to me.

    My sister dated an “illegal immigrant” in Utah. He was called to the Denver, Colorado mission; he served two years; and now He is an Engineering Major at a prestigious university in Utah. Recently he was also married in the temple (not to my sister).

    Another friend of mine swam the river into the US twice as an “illegal immigrant.” Now, after several years here, he has finally naturalized. He is a paramedic and a infant respiratory therapist at a hospital in Oklahoma; and he is the director of his department at his hospital. Colleagues from all over the state call him daily for consulting on how to save baby’s lives. He is that good!

    Who is going to tell these individuals, and their families, and all the people whose lives they have touched and even saved, that these righteous men are criminals and should have been thrown in irons and deported back to Mexico years ago?

    Laws that are unjust and unconstitutional are as contemptible as the rogues who enact them. Obedience to the laws of the land, as they are interpreted by the courts and rulers, is a fickle thing. Throughout the history of the world, many of our most righteous men and woman have been capital fugitives.

    I, for one, do not blindly follow and endorse the law. My first allegiance is to God’s law and to my conscience (the Light of Christ). As a rule, I strive to obey the laws of local civil governments; but when they conflict with God’s laws, then we have a problem.

    In Hitler’s Germany, Latter Day Saints who were first and foremost loyal to whatever government happened to exist at the time, would have been party to the extermination of countless Jews and the slaughter of countless other innocent people. Personally, I would rather kneel down and give up my own life than submit to such practices; just as the People of Ammon did anciently.

    Do you realize that in the last century, four times more people were murdered by their own rulers than in wars between nations?

    This world’s track record for just and righteous government is not good. Get the Spirit! Follow the Spirit. All other arguments are useless and fruitless.

    • B.Nichols says:

      Both your views are very valid and very thought inspiring. However the laws legally established and constitutional do provide for just and orderly functions including enforcement, that was Divinely decreed for this land. This is not contrary to the Spirit and those enforcing the laws may not be in tune with the Spirit and yet be very honest and true in upholding those laws, as I know many here locally who fit that profile. So saying all other arguments are useless & fruitless seems a bit prideful and condescending to some who might read this and not be a member. I live in Atlanta and there have been branch presidents here who we loved and adored and got deported because they were breaking the law. Were all the members & leaders sad, of course, but they knowingly broke the laws of our state and there was no recourse. Would I bring them back if I could – absolutely. Then, however, after lamenting this problem, a strong & beautiful sister from Uganda said she had no problem with them being sent back to go through the proper channels because she has been waiting 7yrs. for her family to get permission to immigrate here from Uganda, and expects it take another 3yrs. They are all college graduates but they have no border to walk over !! Sometimes a different perspective brings reality up close and personal. As long as we can uphold the laws that are just it is our responsibility to do so.

  5. chris says:

    The author is correct. If you believe the words of the angels and prophets in the Book of Mormon, all who are led here are led here by the hand of God, whether they realize it or not.

    If you believe these words, then you also believe where it is written in the record that when this nation turns away from God, it will no longer be possessed by those who are led from the hand of God, but will be possessed and taken over by those who are enemies to God.

    This does not have to mean a war of oppression and possession in the military conquest sense. We as a nation have turned away from God. Among other things, we have crafted laws which deny the opportunity for God to send people to the promised land. Can you think of no better way for the adversary to thwart the plans of God than to make it impossible for God to gather people to the land of promise?

    • Jacob says:

      The Americas are the promised land. Not just the United States. The gathering is to the stakes of Zion. I think everyone should read the church’s official position on this topic.

  6. Anthony Giles says:

    The people making comments are making “glittering generalities” with no real solution. The solution will not exist until the Savior comes. Reality dictates that we are in a socialistic environment, and living in such, glittering generalities provide nothing but empty platitudes. The stress that illegal immigrants are contributing to society is incalculable. Until the laws are enforced, illegal immigrants are being lumped together to act within the law. We cannot identify who the humble ones are, who the hard working ones are, who the law abiding ones are, and who the honest ones are because of the number of them. Society will react when they have no alternatives. Discrimination is not the issue; but law enforcement is. The law is valid for every illegal immigrant regardless of their original intent. This is a Book of Mormon prophecy and it will play out. We will be judged according to our thoughts towards our fellow men. In the mean time glittering generalities provide no solace.

  7. Travis Dutson says:

    Jared,
    I agree with most of what you said. I believe that our government and the Mexican government have both TOGETHER facilitated the massive issue to help bring about more confusion for “we the people” and the destruction of freedom. Much of Mexico’s problems are absolutely not necessary, but are allowed to happen to make the people suffer and then teach them to come here (again…by the US and Mexican Govts). I do believe that we MUST monitor our borders and we must restrict the number of immigrants per year. We do want people to come here and be AMERICANS…and if too many of any given culture come at a time, it will be easier to not assimilate (especially if you are being taught not to). The vast majority of people that come here illegally are good people that have been deceived by those controlled by the mother of abominations. The most powerful secret combination that exists today is the one that seeks (and mostly does) to control the governments of all lands and nations. The United States is no exception – sadly this control is nearly complete within our own government. We know that in the last days that there will be wars and rumors of wars, and that mens hearts will fail them. Our hearts truly are failing us. We are very rapidly becoming a heartless people; a people with limited compassion. A people that wants to hate the illegal immigrants (despite the fact that they are victims of govt driven poverty and a massive advertising campaign to come here); a people that want to go to war and destroy all those “muslims” in the middle east (despite the fact that the vast majority of those Muslims are good, family oriented people that peacefully want to serve God). Have we forgotten what love is? Does charity fail? Comparing the Mexican drug cartels to the gadianton robbers is probably appropriate. They love to get a never ending gain. However, they are merely small players that do big damage. They are controlled by the true secret combination. So often we fail to recognize that in the Book of Mormon the most powerful of secret combinations ALWAYS sought the power of government, and when obtained, they used that power to steal from the people, to teach them falsely and to manipulate them into believing the most vile things are true and correct. We need to decide what type of people we want to be. In Alma chapter 26, when Ammon is “boasting of his God”, he recounts what his fellow Nephites (some of which were members of Christs church) said and wanted to do with the Lamanites. “23 Now do ye remember, my brethren, that we said unto our brethren in the land of Zarahemla, we go up to the land of Nephi, to preach unto our brethren, the Lamanites, and they alaughed us to scorn?

    24 For they said unto us: Do ye suppose that ye can bring the Lamanites to the knowledge of the truth? Do ye suppose that ye can convince the Lamanites of the aincorrectness of the btraditions of their fathers, as cstiffnecked a people as they are; whose hearts delight in the dshedding of blood; whose days have been spent in the grossest iniquity; whose ways have been the ways of a transgressor from the beginning? Now my brethren, ye remember that this was their language.

    25 And moreover they did say: Let us take up arms against them, that we destroy them and their iniquity out of the land, lest they overrun us and destroy us.”

    If the sons of Mosiah had listened to the voice of the people, many mightly miracles would not have come to pass. We must defend ourselves, our country, and most important our liberty, but we must do so with compassion and love, or else I fear that with that liberty we will choose captivity and death.

    Great discussion my dear friends :)

  8. Scott Stover says:

    Gee – I was hoping to read something about whether the movement of “the Lamanites” into this country was part of the fulfillment of the gathering prophecy, or whether they represent the young lion among the Gentiles. But then, that begs the question of “who are the Lamanites”. We assume much too easily that anyone and everyone from south of the US/Mexico border is a Lamanite. That said – I totally agree with the Church’s position – and that we need to be less black and white about the “illegal immigration” problem. “Send ’em all back is NOT the solution”, and the Church’s position just re-affirms my faith in the prophet.

  9. Phill says:

    Jared,
    Thank you for such a great article.
    To Sister Sandberg, I find it a bit unfair to place all Illegal Immigrants under the same umbrella of that of coming to the United States to feed off the system. But that was already pointed out.
    While serving as a missionary in Idaho, I had the privilege and opportunity of working with many of this Illegal immigrants. I was able to witness the baptism of many of this brothers and sisters, as well as the opportunity to see them get endowed as I finished my mission.
    Area authorities clearly mentioned and spoke to church leaders in the area about the importance of bringing the gospel to this immigrants, and it was spoken of by our mission president that this is fulfilling prophecy. Missionaries called as “Spanish Elders” doubled and Spanish work was at times stronger than in English work, all this in Idaho.

    By personal experience, I can tell you that those I taught had never heard of Mormons nor had seen a temple before, so the fact that there are 12 temples in Mexico does not mean that they aren’t brought up north to hear the Gospel. I know, through a series of coincidental events the brothers and sisters that I taught were prepared to hear the gospel. In Idaho. Today, this brothers and sisters are strong members and leaders in their branches, serve their communities, some have moved back to Mexico and are the first members in their communities helping missionary work go forth, becoming leaders of where they are. There is a bigger picture in immigration that is often overlooked.

  10. Ginger says:

    From a 2005 GAO Study – For a study population of 55,322 illegal aliens:
    • They were arrested for at least a total of nearly 700,000 criminal offenses, averaging 13 offenses per alien.
    • About 24 percent were drug offenses.
    • About 21 percent were immigration offenses.
    • About 15 percent were property-related offenses such as burglary, larceny-theft, motor vehicle theft, and property damage.
    • About 12 percent were for murder, robbery, assault, and sexually related crimes.
    • The remaining 28 percent were for other offenses such as traffic violations, including driving under the influence; fraud—including forgery and counterfeiting; weapons violations; and obstruction of justice.

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