Questions relating to (im)migration are among the most heated topics on both sides of the Atlantic. Western societies have changed dramatically because of large-scale immigration in the last decades. Christians are also engaged in the discussion, attempting to find direction from the biblical texts. Overwhelmingly, persons in leading positions (both in the secular world and in churches and faith-based organizations) support the concept of “welcoming the stranger.” The Bible is seen by them as urging us to open the borders as wide as we can. In the broader population, however, reservations remain. This book, written by a Bible professor who has witnessed mass-migration first-hand, both in Europe and in the U.S., and who has been a migrant himself for over twenty years, attempts to step back and look at the whole of the complex biblical witness, instead of cherry-picking passages that further a specific agenda. It also looks at the salient data on the ground, in the fields of psychology, demography, economy, and security–data that can no longer be ignored when trying to apply the Bible in a responsible way. The book demonstrates the shortcomings of the vast majority of biblical and theological publications on the issue of (im)migration and presents a comprehensive argument for the use of wisdom and caution, and against short-sighted and emotionally driven policies supporting open borders. (ISBN9781725297982, 326 p.)
Zehnder Markus. The Bible and Immigration. A Critical and Empirical Reassessment. Eugene: Wipf and Stock, 2021.