This blog comes to you from the people at
Peace Mennonite Church of Columbia, MO
Meditation and thoughts follow the scripture.
1 Corinthians 10:23—11:1
33 Teach me, O Lord, the way of your statutes,
and I will observe it to the end.
34 Give me understanding, that I may keep your law
and observe it with my whole heart.
35 Lead me in the path of your commandments,
for I delight in it.
36 Turn my heart to your decrees,
and not to selfish gain.
37 Turn my eyes from looking at vanities;
give me life in your ways.
38 Confirm to your servant your promise,
which is for those who fear you.
39 Turn away the disgrace that I dread,
for your ordinances are good.
40 See, I have longed for your precepts;
in your righteousness give me life.
21 You shall not wrong or oppress a resident alien, for you were aliens in the land of Egypt. 22You shall not abuse any widow or orphan. 23If you do abuse them, when they cry out to me, I will surely heed their cry; 24my wrath will burn, and I will kill you with the sword, and your wives shall become widows and your children orphans.
25 If you lend money to my people, to the poor among you, you shall not deal with them as a creditor; you shall not exact interest from them. 26If you take your neighbour’s cloak in pawn, you shall restore it before the sun goes down; 27for it may be your neighbour’s only clothing to use as cover; in what else shall that person sleep? And if your neighbour cries out to me, I will listen, for I am compassionate.
1 Corinthians 10:23—11:1
Do All to the Glory of God
23 ‘All things are lawful’, but not all things are beneficial. ‘All things are lawful’, but not all things build up. 24Do not seek your own advantage, but that of others. 25Eat whatever is sold in the meat market without raising any question on the ground of conscience, 26for ‘the earth and its fullness are the Lord’s.’ 27If an unbeliever invites you to a meal and you are disposed to go, eat whatever is set before you without raising any question on the ground of conscience. 28But if someone says to you, ‘This has been offered in sacrifice’, then do not eat it, out of consideration for the one who informed you, and for the sake of conscience— 29I mean the other’s conscience, not your own. For why should my liberty be subject to the judgement of someone else’s conscience? 30If I partake with thankfulness, why should I be denounced because of that for which I give thanks?
31 So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do everything for the glory of God. 32Give no offence to Jews or to Greeks or to the church of God, 33just as I try to please everyone in everything I do, not seeking my own advantage, but that of many, so that they may be saved. 111Be imitators of me, as I am of Christ.
The New Revised Standard Version (Anglicized Edition), copyright 1989, 1995 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
Our church is involved in the Western District Conference (www.mennowdc.org) of Mennonite Church USA (www.mennoniteusa.org). A first impression I feel from that involvement is the extent of my ignorance, and the extent of almost everyone’s knowledge about immigration. We are not receiving complete, competent and fair knowledge about the issues from normal sources of current affairs. I don’t know whether the media is slanted to the left or the right on this issue, because I don’t know the truth, yet.
So, our first responsibility is to understand the issues, and see that we take care not to oppress ‘the resident alien’. (I don’t think the Old Testament Exodus uses this term in same sense that US Immigration laws use the term!). Resident alien means any immigrant who is living here—and that may include many, many of us.
Today, I ask that we pray for knowledge—that we learn and begin to understand our nation’s problems with immigration and immigrant labor, and work to not oppress those who are resident aliens in this land.