Ruth: What would Jesus do about immigration?

Published June 21, 2018

e_SDLqJesus? Do you have a moment?"

"I have all the time in the world, Gabriel. What can I do for you?"

"Well, it seems we have a bit of a problem down on Earth again."

"Oh boy, what is it this time? Another Access Hollywood tape surface?"

"Not quite, My Deity. It appears the Trump administration has engaged in a policy of breaking up families from Central America and Mexico attempting to cross the United States border. At least 2,000 children, some younger than four years old, have been taken away from their parents and placed in detention facilities."

"Oymygawd — no pun intended — that's awful. Why would they do that?"

"That's why I'm here, Jesus. How to put this as gently as possible, but U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions is justifying the traumatic disruption of families by, ahem, throwing you under the chariot so to speak."

"Me! How so?"

"Sessions is running around citing St. Paul in Romans 13. You know, the part that reads: 'Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established.'"

"Can I let you in on a family trade secret, Gabe? When my father created weasels it was simply because he wanted something to compare to Jeff Sessions."

"I didn't know that."

"I get plenty steamed when people use the Bible as an alibi to engage in all manner of dreadful behavior. You know, that passage in Romans 13 was once used to justify slavery in the run-up to the Civil War. The South Africans used it to legitimize apartheid. And even Hitler referenced it as a predicate for the Holocaust. I'm beginning to think this free will business is highly over-rated. Do these people actually believe I would endorse ripping children away from their parents? Whatever happened to all those rubber bracelets proclaiming WWJD for What Would Jesus Do?"

"I'm afraid it was a passing theological fashion fad, Divinity."

"This is a bit confusing, and I'm supposed to be omniscient. If Sessions is going to start using the Bible as a source of inspiration for immigration policy I would prefer he'd cite the Beatitudes from Matthew 5. I'm especially fond of: 'Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the Earth.'"

"That may well be, but it seems all those meek aren't going to inherit any part of the United States."

"Hmmmm, and let's not forget, 'Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness sake: for theirs is the kingdom of Heaven.' And while we're at it, someone needs to remind Sessions of Matthew 19: 23-24, which notes: "Then said Jesus [that would be me] to his disciples, Verily I say unto you, That a rich man shall hardly ever enter into the kingdom of Heaven. And again I say unto you. It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.'"

"Things aren't looking too good for Donald Trump."

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"And for a lot of other people, too. Whatever happened to the Republican Party and all that blather about family values and how much they love the children and how the children are our future. And now they are locking up four-year-olds because their parents wanted to escape from gang violence, or abject poverty, or domestic abuse to seek a better life? They've become the party preoccupied with smites, rather than light."

"What do you think we — or you — should do about all this, My Lord."

"Well we could send a plague of boils to follow Sessions around wherever he goes. Too obvious?"

"Actually, I would suggest locusts, which would have a dash more panache."

"Ah, Gabriel, you always did have a flair for the theatrical. Take a note."

"Yes sir."

"One of these days Jeff Sessions is going to show up here and I want to have a long talk with him."

"And what will you say, My Savior?"

"For over two millennia my name has been associated with compassion, social justice, nonviolence, equality, love and charity toward all."

"You sound like one of those liberal elites."

"Let's continue. I didn't die on the cross for the sins of man only to have Jeff Sessions attempt to draft me as a co-conspirator to rip apart innocent families and treat children as common criminals. The Bible was not written by Charles Dickens."

"Oh by the way. Lucifer called about your golf date Saturday at his club."

"The usual place?"

"Yes. Mar-a-Lago."