Illegal cross-Channel migration : the churches must not condone premeditated criminality

Considerable levels of illegal immigration are taking place at this very moment on the South Coast. A very small proportion of migrants arriving in this manner are being returned to the Continent.

As concerned Bible-Believing Christians, we assert that there is an urgent need to uphold the laws of the land, and that a primary duty of Government is to protect the nation’s borders. We therefore legitimately ask, What is the Home Office doing in terms of a tough response to discourage the dinghies from keep on coming? Has anything been done in the light of this present springtime wave of new arrivals to dissuade potential migrants from their view that Britain is a soft-touch?

The problem is that the authorities are frightened of appearing too tough and of doing anything that could possibly be construed as ‘racist’ or as ‘lacking in compassion’. The pressures fabricated by the forces of virtue-signalling liberal secularism have caused a completely unjustified relaxed attitude to this crisis. However, opposition to illegal entry, and then to the use of such entry to claim asylum, is a Biblical imperative. 

Crossing the English Channel in order enter into the country without permission is a premeditated criminal act. The Bible teaches that deliberate attempts to break the laws of the land are sinful in the sight of God. We read, for example, in 1 Peter 2:13-14, “Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord’s sake : whether it be to the king, as supreme; Or unto governors, as unto them that are sent by him” (1 Peter 2:13–14 KJV). Illegal immigration is in direct repudiation of that Biblical principle.

As soon as the migrants arrive on the beaches, taxpayers’ resources are being employed to provide clothing, food and accommodation, along with the costs of the legal expenses to process the asylum applications. In this way law-breaking is actually being rewarded. God is not pleased with such injustice.

Furthermore, there is no morally justifiable ground for crossing the Channel from France or Belgium to claim asylum, because France and Belgium are already safe countries. If a man is fleeing for his life, he will run to the nearest safe place, but asylum seekers reaching the UK will have already passed through or over various other safe countries, which suggests that there are other motives for choosing this country than mere safety.  

Of course one has compassion for those who have experienced genuine restraints upon their rights and liberties in their countries of origin (as opposed to just desiring a better standard of living), but the problem of oppressive regimes around the world cannot be solved by the mass transfer of populations to the UK, let alone by illegal transfers.  

If it is a moral obligation to accept 20 people in a dinghy who have originated from, say, Iran or Afghanistan, where does the obligation end? Should the UK accept another 20,000, 200,000, or 2 million? If Britain does not crack down on the present criminal activity, then it is a green light for vast numbers of others to attempt the journey. 

It goes without saying that a Christian loves his neighbour whoever he is, and wherever he comes from, but this primary requirement of the Christian faith must not be used as a cover for the condoning of pre-planned criminal behaviour.

Loving one’s neighbour does not mean that people leave their houses unlocked at night, so that anyone who wishes to can come in, use their belongings and eat their food without their permission. We are all keen to protect the integrity of our own households, and it should be no different for nations protecting the integrity of their God-ordained borders (Deuteronomy 32:8, Acts 17:26).  

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