Episode 524

MLK’s Positive Impact, Biblical Immigration Solutions & When Scripture Seems Silent

Jan 16, 2024

Facing brutal cold across the country, many Americans took Monday to reflect on the civil rights work of Martin Luther King, Jr. The Evangelical Immigration Table and World Relief issued a letter Jan. 11 signed by more than 500 evangelical Christians to U.S. presidential candidates urging them to consider biblical principles when drafting solutions to the immigration crisis. And, while the Scriptures speak about many issues, they do not speak to all issues. A piece in the Baptist Press Toolbox offers some suggestions on how believers can understand what God thinks about an issue when there is no specific, related Scriptural reference.

Transcript

Facing brutal cold across the country, many Americans took Monday to reflect on the civil rights work of Martin Luther King, Jr.

In a recent Pew’s study of more than 5,000 adults, 47 percent of said King left a “very positive” impact on the nation, but only 38 percent said their own views on racial equality were influenced by King’s legacy a “great deal or a fair amount.”

Gregory Ward, pastor of Emmanual Baptist Church in Riverdale, Ga., said he has respected King from his youth, having grown up in Detroit with parents who were immensely civically engaged. Then, moving to Atlanta to attend Morehouse College, he heard Clark Atlanta University’s weekly radio broadcasts of King’s speeches.

At Morehouse, one of King’s alma maters, Ward began to greatly appreciate King as a wise and skilled theologian, in addition to an advocate for widespread progress while still a young man.
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The Evangelical Immigration Table and World Relief issued a letter Jan. 11 signed by more than 500 evangelical Christians to U.S. presidential candidates urging them to consider biblical principles when drafting solutions to the immigration crisis.

Biblical immigration policies would be nonpartisan and embrace a respect for both the law and immigrants, who are made in God’s image. Biblically based policies would promote family unity, civility and order, panelists said, and would avoid harsh, unbiblical language.

While the imago Dei is often cited in pro-life circles, Anthony Beam pointed out its application in all considerations of life, including immigration, immigrants and their families.

Anthony Beam is a policy consultant for the South Carolina Baptist Convention and senior director of Church and Community Engagement and Public Affairs at North Greenville University.
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Every day, hundreds of thousands of people die without the hope of Jesus. Your faithful prayers will make a difference. That’s why the IMB created a free 18-month calendar, called “Impacting Lostness Through Prayer”. It provides guidance, reminders and encouragement as you pray for individuals and communities who have yet to hear the gospel. Learn more about this free resource at IMB.org/prayercalendar.
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While the Scriptures speak about many issues, they do not speak to all issues. A piece in the Baptist Press Toolbox offers some suggestions on how believers can understand what God thinks about an issue when there is no specific, related Scriptural reference.

One way is to search for and apply relevant scriptural commands, whether directly or indirectly.

The Bible offers broad commands and narrow commands.

If an issue proceeds from the heart, then we must consider whether Scripture has something to say about it directly or indirectly. The first place we should look is in scriptural commands, whether broad or narrow.

Broad/general commands typically apply to many situations, such as the command to love God first and then love our neighbor, and always apply in some way to all cultures and all contexts.

The other type of Scriptural commands are narrow or specific commands, those that relate to a particular circumstances. Narrow commands are similar to “case law” (i.e., law as established by the outcome of former cases) in that they give us paradigmatic examples for situations we might encounter, the piece says.
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You can find it and other helpful resources at Baptist Press.com. While you’re there learn about signing up for our free daily email filled with helpful stories. You can find it at Baptist Press.com.

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