Who is in Control of National Borders?
Here’s an interesting section of scripture that I believe has some relevance to the current refugee crisis.
From one man he made all the nations, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he marked out their appointed times in history and the boundaries of their lands. God did this so that they would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him
Acts 17 26-27
To me it shows that God, not man, is in control of national boundaries. And he will change those boundaries to suit the purposes of His Kingdom and to create conditions conducive to people seeking and potentially finding Him.
That could work in multiple ways including:
1) Moving believers to unbelieving areas to take the gospel where it hasn’t been heard before.
2) Moving unbelievers into an area where they have more chance of hearing the gospel.
3) Moving hostile unbelievers into a lukewarm area where the gospel used to mean something, but doesn’t any more, where what is left of Christian faith will be tested and refined by the influx of those hostile unbelievers.
One of the clearest examples of the changing of boundaries and movement of peoples has been seen over the last century in the Middle East, relating to the Promised Land and the surrounding nations. The significance of those changes (and how recent they are) became one of the biggest discoveries I made in my reading about WWI. As a result of that war, centuries of Ottoman (Moslem) rule was ended in “Palestine”, and the whole map of the surrounding changed, not only making way for Israel to return to the Promised Land, but also making sure that their stay wouldn’t be an easy one.
The effects of tensions in that area continue to be felt not only by Israel, but also worldwide, and are at the centre of today’s refugee situation.
Which of the three scenarios listed above most closely matches today’s situation?
I suggest that while there is an opportunity for taking advantage of option two (especially considering the failure of the richer Moslem nations to take in refugees – see previous post), the third option may be the most likely.
So called “Christian” nations in the west are increasingly Godless, even the churched have little idea of who God is or what He’s like.
In the “War on Terror”, the western governments involved have bent over backwards to reassure us that Islam is a religion of peace, and that those at the heart of the “terrorism” are fundamentalist extremists who are NOT genuine Moslems. [note the term “fundamentalist” a term that has so often also been applied to Christians who take their faith seriously].
While Western governments try to be more accommodating to their Moslem citizens, only recently we’ve seen an American Christian jailed for refusing to issue marriage licences to homosexuals. That case will probably be the first drop in a growing flood of anti-Christian discrimination focused on the recent political rush to make homosexuality more accepted in society.
I have to wonder what would have happened if it had been a Moslem who had been refusing to issue those marriage documents.
A decade and a half ago David Pawson gave a series of talks about the growth of Islam in Britain. He had concluded that Britain was on the way to becoming a Moslem nation; not by accident, but as a judgement. That series is well worth listening to, especially the first part, “Britain’s Spiritual Vacuum”:
Maybe the mass Moslem movement across Europe is quite possibly the reaping of what the West sowed in wars against Moslem nations in the name of the “War on Terror”.
Western involvement, initially behind the scenes – such as the US in Afghanistan after the Russian invasion helping to train and establish those who became Al Qaeda, followed by the Western invasion of Afghanistan with Al Qaeda now as the enemy.
And we can’t ignore the two Bush family wars against Irag that destabilised that area enough to open the door for a group like ISIS, from whom the flood of people into Europe are fleeing.
And where was the “Christian” church when national governments were throwing their resources into attacking the weaker Moslem nations? Were they part of the cheer squad, confusing national patriotism with Christian faith?
I’ll let you consider what they were doing in your own nations.