What would happen to a modern-day Moses in America? A Moses who led people from Central America to the United States. To a land flowing with milk and honey. To a better life in a new land. Even better, to a new land populated with lots of Christians, rather than the pagans who didn’t know their God.
According to the software I use to analyze what I write, this has a positive headline. It’s a good headline, because “Positive headlines tend to get better engagement than neutral or negative ones”. According to the software package.
But I wonder. How many of you think it’s a positive headline? And how many think the idea of a modern-day Moses in America is negative?
But the real question is – what does our reaction, in total, say about us as a country? And to drill down a bit, what does our individual reaction say about us as a person? Especially if we’re Christian.
And now, today, for those who love to hate all the people Tucker Carlson hates, what would happen to a modern-day Moses in America?
In modern-day America, we love to hate. I suppose it’s true pretty much everywhere in the world. There’s certainly plenty of hatred to go around. But I must say, I prefer to watch BBC News, even in America, because they don’t have all the hatred so visible on-set with the guests willing to yell, talk over each other, san play the “what if someone did that to ____” game. I haven’t seen One America News, but I stopped watching Fox News years ago for that very reason.
And then the other day, I read this on msnnews.com, NY Times Drops Massive Tucker Carlson Investigation Declaring Program ‘Most Racist Show In The History Of Cable News’. It’s from a New York Times story, How Tucker Carlson Stoked White Fear to Conquer Cable. Sorry, but the NYT link requires a subscription.
Here’s an excerpt from msn.com.
In the years since, Mr. Carlson has constructed what may be the most racist show in the history of cable news — and also, by some measures, the most successful.
As I said – hatred sells.
Though he frequently declares himself an enemy of prejudice — “We don’t judge them by group, and we don’t judge them on their race,” Mr. Carlson explained to an interviewer a few weeks before accusing impoverished immigrants of making America dirty — his show teaches loathing and fear. Night after night, hour by hour, Mr. Carlson warns his viewers that they inhabit a civilization under siege — by violent Black Lives Matter protesters in American cities, by diseased migrants from south of the border, by refugees importing alien cultures, and by tech companies and cultural elites who will silence them, or label them racist, if they complain.
Seriously? An enemy of prejudice?
When refugees from Africa, numbering in the hundreds, began crossing into Texas from Mexico during the Trump administration, he warned that the continent’s high birthrates meant the new arrivals might soon “overwhelm our country and change it completely and forever.” Amid nationwide outrage over George Floyd’s murder by a Minneapolis police officer, Mr. Carlson dismissed those protesting the killing as “criminal mobs.”
Again – an enemy of prejudice?
Companies like Angie’s List and Papa John’s dropped their ads. The following month, “Tucker Carlson Tonight” became the highest-rated cable news show in history.
Hatred sells! Big time.
I’ve wondered for a long time, what would happen to a modern-day Moses in America? Years. Especially after Trump became President. Off and on, I’ve started to write/work on this. But I’ve never been satisfied with it. Or the events didn’t seem quite right.
But now? We’ll see if I click Publish. But this feels right. For the moment. We’ll see.
Why do I single out Christians in modern-day Moses in America?
We’ll get to the – why single out Christians – question in a moment. But first.
Is Tucker Carlson Christian?
Yes, supposedly, Tucker Carlson is Christian. From getreligion.org:
You can just hear the gasps from readers across America who do not understand the role that Georgetown plays in the DC political ecosphere.
Yes, Tucker Carlson and his family attend an Episcopal parish. If I remember correctly, they have been members of this parish for quite some time.
It’s a Washington thing. Lambs and lions (who is who depends on the biases of the observer) may occupy the same pews. It’s all about location, location, location. And as any editor inside the Beltway will tell you, the Episcopal Church retains its clout, serving as a kind of “NPR at prayer” (a label created by my Orthodox priest, a former Episcopal tall-steeple clergyman).
From that, we gather the answer is yes. However, from that, we must also wonder, is it more about politics or more about religion? Or, more about what can get him the most money?
Why do I single out Christians?
So, back to, why do I single out Christians? Tucker Carlson is, truth be told, only a tiny piece of the answer. Maybe like the straw that broke the camel’s back. It’s a small piece of straw. But it’s also the reality that way too many Christians look to Fox News, their cross-wearing anchors, and their not so obvious so-called Christian anchors. And they seem to lose sight of the Bible, lost in the sights and sounds of Fox News.
But the real reason is the mass of Christians with whom that kind of talk resonates. They like it. And somehow, they appear to think it’s Christian.
And so, that’s a big part of the reason I point out Christians. Both for the nation as a whole and for us as individuals. The majority of people in America claim to be Christian. So that’s a big deal. However, lumping a group of people together doesn’t tell us anything about the people within that group.
So while many claim to be Christian, it’s safe to say that too many of them really aren’t. And if I’m going to reach out to that group, I have to get each of you as individuals, to look at yourself. Not what the country thinks. Not what a large group of so-called Christians thinks. But what do you think? For instance, if you claim to be Christian, do you act like one?
Interestingly, if you’re not Christian, are you in fact acting like Christians are taught to act? That question is also critically important for those of you who aren’t Christian. Why? Because if you’re turned off by the way too many visible, noisy, so-called Christians are acting – you may very well find out that those Christians who turn you off aren’t actually Christian at all.
You may discover you want to know more about what Christianity really teaches! Because it’s not like a lot of the stuff you see coming out of our government and political people who keep hiding behind their version of Christianity.
So, with all that in mind, I urge you to continue reading. Christian or not.
I started to write this as far back as 2019. I couldn’t bring myself to finish it. But now, we have a different Party, a different President, and some contrasts to make. And a basis for actually seeing both sides, with information to decide where we want to stand on the issues.
Do you remember what the Bible says about aliens/immigrants?
Just in case you don’t remember, or didn’t know, here’s a passage from the Old Testament. Instructions given by God to the Hebrew people. Today’s Jews. I include the entire passage, because the context is fascinating, especially when compared to the overall values of today’s political parties.
Uh Oh. Some of you are already getting a bit nervous. Social responsibility. I get it. But hey, it’s in the Bible. All the way back to the Old Testament! It’s not like I’m making this stuff up from thin air. And it’s not some new idea coming from socialists. Or something worse. No. It’s from God. From your God if you’re Christian. BTW, also your God, even if you’re not Christian. But that’s for another day.
Some of the original Jewish Laws don’t have a match in today’s legal system. However, they are still things that are, as the bible says in various places, detestable to God. As such, they may even be removed from our sense or morally “right”. But then, just because people decide some behaviors are OK, that doesn’t mean God has made a similar change in His attitude towards them.
God made us in His image. We did not make God in our image. And we do not get to remake God in our image either. God also made us with the free will to choose to reject any of His decisions of what’s right or wrong. We even have the free will to reject God entirely. However, these free-will choices do have consequences. Therefore, when we read some of the items below, when the penalty was death at that time, it may very well now be spiritual death, including our final destination after our physical death.
Since we are part of God’s creation, He does make the rules. And God also determines what’s ultimately detestable to Him. We don’t get to dictate those things to Him either.
So, as we continue with Social Responsibility, please keep those things in mind. BTW, it’s also a good idea to keep those things in mind as we live our lives and make decisions too!
Ex 22:16 “If a man seduces a virgin who is not pledged to be married and sleeps with her, he must pay the bride-price, and she shall be his wife. 17 If her father absolutely refuses to give her to him, he must still pay the bride-price for virgins.
Ex 22:18 “Do not allow a sorceress to live.
Ex 22:19 “Anyone who has sexual relations with an animal must be put to death.
Ex 22:20 “Whoever sacrifices to any god other than the LORD must be destroyed.
These beginning verses are examples of things that are detestable to God. They had a very high penalty associated with them. And, are pretty much ignored today. But, as I said, that doesn’t change the fact that they were, and still are, detestable to God.
Ex 22:21 “Do not mistreat an alien or oppress him, for you were aliens in Egypt.
Here we have my title question: What would happen to a modern-day Moses in America?
Too many people in America today think the best way to treat an alien/immigrant is to keep them out of the country in the first place. Or send them back home. Even to send them back home to the country of their ancestors, if they weren’t born here and aren’t white. As if the reality that they were born here, and may have lived here for generations, is somehow totally irrelevant.
There’s so much more to say on this. But we’ll return to this in a moment.
Ex 22:22 “Do not take advantage of a widow or an orphan. 23 If you do and they cry out to me, I will certainly hear their cry. 24 My anger will be aroused, and I will kill you with the sword; your wives will become widows and your children fatherless.
Just think about how different America would be if we lived by this one. And what would we turn our hatred towards if not them?
Ex 22:25 “If you lend money to one of my people among you who is needy, do not be like a moneylender; charge him no interest. 26 If you take your neighbor’s cloak as a pledge, return it to him by sunset, 27 because his cloak is the only covering he has for his body. What else will he sleep in? When he cries out to me, I will hear, for I am compassionate.
This is another one that would change this country so much. These days, interest is a way to keep poor people poor and make rich people even richer. And we’re way beyond talking about coats. Now, it’s people being removed from their homes.
And now, depending on who’s elected the mayor in my nearby “city of the Angels” being homeless may soon be enough reason to be put in prison. See – timing is everything. I just heard that one on the news last night. Shocking for this area. It may be common in other parts of the country, but it hasn’t been here. Here are just three of the articles I’ve written on homelessness, just in case you don’t know why Christians should care about homeless people. What do you do if your neighbor is homeless? Do Christians know who is poor? Will there be homeless people in Heaven? Who cares?
Ex 22:28 “Do not blaspheme God or curse the ruler of your people.
Even more than cursing God, God’s name has become a curse word.
And our rulers curse each other.
Not to mention, using God’s name in vain
Ex 22:29 “Do not hold back offerings from your granaries or your vats.
“You must give me the firstborn of your sons. 30 Do the same with your cattle and your sheep. Let them stay with their mothers for seven days, but give them to me on the eighth day.
Ah, the ever hated giving back to God. Some are avoiding this issue entirely by not even joining a church. The numbers are quite shocking, as I recently wrote about in What does it say when fewer than 50% of the people in America belong to a church?.
Ex 22:31 “You are to be my holy people. So do not eat the meat of an animal torn by wild beasts; throw it to the dogs.
And one final command about how to be clean and holy, in Old Testament terms. Also, a good way to not pick up diseases and help to stay alive.
What does Jesus say about aliens/immigrants?
Are you sitting down? And are you hanging on to your hats? ‘Cause this might just shock you. Something you’ve probably heard and read many times. But maybe didn’t pay close enough attention to it?
Mt 25:31 “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his throne in heavenly glory. 32 All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. 33 He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.
Do you remember this one? Most people, Christians and non-Christians alike, probably think they are sheep. The “good” people”. Except for, maybe, those who remember that there are no “good people”?
Mt 25:34 “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. 35 For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36 I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’
The righteous have done these things. But for Jesus?
Mt 25:37 “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’
The righteous are surprised about Jesus’ reference to them doing it for Him. They are curious. And so they ask.
Mt 25:40 “The King will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.’
I suspect the Holy Spirit fills in the blanks here. Gives them an understanding of what Jesus just said.
At the same time, I wonder, what are the others thinking? Do they have a clue what’s going to be said to them?
Mt 25:41 “Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. 42 For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, 43 I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.’
Some of the unrighteous will understand why these words were said to them.
But many, especially the so-called, self-appointed Christians on the left are shocked. They really shouldn’t be. They should also know better than to ask. But don’t we all know better? And don’t we all ask anyway?
But they think, none of our friends were ever hungry or thirsty. Or unable to buy their own clothes. We don’t think we ever had a friend in prison. Not a real friend. Certainly not a current friend. And we always visited sick friends in the hospital. So who is Jesus talking about?
Mt 25:44 “They also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?’
You know, as Christians, we really should know better than to think like that. Or to ask Jesus a question about when we failed to do any of those things. And yet, we just can’t help ourselves. And so, knowing we’re thinking those very questions, Jesus answers them for us.
Mt 25:45 “He will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’
I told you not to ask! But hey, I asked too. Unfortunately, for some, it’s like the poor guy who asked Jesus, who is my neighbor? At which point Jesus related the Parable of the Good Samaritan. And we all found out that the people we hate the most are the ones who are good neighbors, because they will help anybody. Oops.
Guess what that means? Those immigrants and aliens some like to hate? They are our neighbors. Let me make that more clear. If we hate immigrants, Jesus will tell us:
For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.
Mt 25:46 “Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life.”
Ultimately, we find out, too late, that what was OK in the U.S. legal system still isn’t OK with God. Poor treatment of aliens and immigrants is still unacceptable. Still detestable to God.
Returning again to the question – What would happen to a modern-day Moses in America?
I dare say, it very much depends on who’s in power. Some will want the modern-day Moses arrested. Some will prevent the modern-day Moses from crossing the border. And some will cheer him as a hero. And there will be plenty of 24-hour cable news stories on why we should hate this modern-day Moses and all those he’s bringing with him. Sadly, probably even more hatred would be spewed if the modern-day Moses turned out to be a woman.
The odd thing, to me at least, is that the majority of white Christians tend to vote for those who want to either arrest this modern-day Moses or keep him from entering our country. And the vast majority of those who would cheer a modern-day Moses as a hero are neither white nor Christian.
The race part, as awful as it is to say, is sadly not too surprising in this culture today.
The number of Christians who support the party that would keep our modern-day Moses from helping aliens and immigrants is depressing. How is it that so many who claim to be Christian think this issue isn’t Biblical? Sorry Franklin Graham, but it is. Sorry Tucker Carlson, but you’re wrong. And how is it that so many Christians think it’s not our problem if we can just prevent those aliens from crossing our border?
Why is it that the allegedly Godless, according to the conservative Christians, are the ones who want to help them?
Conclusion – what would happen to a modern-day Moses in America?
Well, from my viewpoint, from a Biblical perspective, Jesus answered that very question in the Parable of the Sheep and the Goats. That and the answer Jesus gave about the Greatest Commandment.
22:34-40 pp — Mk 12:28-31
Mt 22:34 Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. 35 One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: 36 “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”
Mt 22:37 Jesus replied: “ ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”
Oh No! Not another saying about our neighbor!
Oh Yes! Jesus really did say that. And whether we pass laws to claim verse 39 is null and void in America, or any other country, it’s still the law in the Kingdom of God. It still matters to Jesus. And we’d best better pay attention.
The problem is that just too many of us, somehow especially some large groups of Christians, don’t love our neighbors as ourselves. And whether we like it or not, admit it or not, that means we also don’t love God with all our heart, soul, and mind.
Finally, it makes us a goat. Puts us on the left. That’s the left of Jesus, not the political left. And sends us to eternal punishment. Why? Because Jesus didn’t tell us to just memorize what He taught. He told us to live a life patterned after His own life. And if we continually refuse to do that, we do send a message to Him. That we reject His lifestyle, His teachings, and Jesus Himself.
How do we avoid that scenario? We could go back to the Gospels. Maybe to Matthew? Begin by reading the first words Matthew records when Jesus began His three-year mission here on earth.
Mt 4:12 When Jesus heard that John had been put in prison, he returned to Galilee. 13 Leaving Nazareth, he went and lived in Capernaum, which was by the lake in the area of Zebulun and Naphtali— 14 to fulfill what was said through the prophet Isaiah:
Mt 4:15 “Land of Zebulun and land of Naphtali,
the way to the sea, along the Jordan,
Galilee of the Gentiles—
Mt 4:16 the people living in darkness
have seen a great light;
on those living in the land of the shadow of death
a light has dawned.”
Mt 4:17 From that time on Jesus began to preach, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is near.”
Yeah – that’s a good start.
Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is near.