It is common, at Christmas time, for globalists to repeat the narrative that the Christ-child was an illegal refugee. The desire to end the nation-state would betray their hope for individual liberty and civil rights, as such things are not guaranteed in their international communitarian utopian hope. However, it’s our goal as polemicists to set-right their twisting of Scripture.
Was Jesus really an illegal alien and “refugee?”
Jesus and his family went on a midnight flight to Egypt, at the warning of an angel, because of Herod’s mass infanticide.
13 Now when they had departed, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, “Rise, take the child and his mother, and flee to Egypt, and remain there until I tell you, for Herod is about to search for the child, to destroy him.” 14 And he rose and took the child and his mother by night and departed to Egypt 15 and remained there until the death of Herod. This was to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the prophet, “Out of Egypt I called my son.”
However, Egypt was a part of the Roman empire. This was essentially like Jesus fleeing from Ohio to Indiana. No sovereign boundaries were crossed, and they certainly weren’t crossed illegally.
The Roman province of Egypt was established three decades before Christ’s birth after Octavian defeated Marc Antony and annexed the Ptolemaic Kingdom.
Octavian, who brought Egypt into the empire, would become “Caesar Augustus,” the very same Caesar who issued a decree that the “whole world should be taxed” as recorded in Acts 2.
In other words, the same emperor over Jesus’ hometown of Nazareth and his region of Galilee was the same emperor over Egypt. Jesus fled the jurisdiction of Herod, but not Augustus. Again, this is more akin to the Duke boys leaving Hazzard county than Pedro jumping the Texas border. International boundaries of sovereign nation-states were simply not at play, and the comparison between illegal immigrants and the Christ-child are simply incongruous.
Historically, travel between Roman provinces was incredibly liberal. The frequent free travel between Roman provinces is made famous in the phrase, “All roads lead to Rome.” While the Romans would be horrendously harsh to the vandals or Barbarians seeking to invade from the outside, free travel from within the empire was the modus operandi.
Jesus was, however, a refugee of political persecution (Herod cared more about Jesus as King than Jesus as Lord) fleeing from genocide and infanticide. There is no doubting that Jesus left the Nazareth zipcode to flee Herod.
Regarding this fact, if we are to compare the Christ-child to pregnant border-jumpers from South or Central America, we should ask the question as to exactly what regime is wiping out a generation of infants. Is it Mexico? Honduras? Who’s murdering the babies out there?
If there is a nation out there butchering their infants (besides America, through Planned Parenthood), we should rightly warn them, then invade them, then depose them. That would be a far more humane option than allowing mobs of their young, single men to invade our borders and leave behind their sicker, weaker, elderly, or female companions in the kill-zone back home.
Of course, the only thing people are fleeing south of the American border is poverty and the occasional act of random violence, and we have plenty of that of our own. Violent crime rates in Chicago or other highly gun-controlled American cities are considerably worse than most of Mexico and almost identical to places like Mexico City. American cities like Los Angeles, New Orleans, Houston, Dallas, St. Louis, Buffalo, Baltimore, Washington D.C., and Philadelphia are considerably worse than the average Mexican zipcode. And immigrants from Mexico aren’t winding up in the rural countryside, but in major American cities – out of the frying pan and into the skillet. Again, the situation is not comparable to the Christ-child fleeing a regionalized Adolf Hitler.
Jesus’ parents weren’t pursuing a life in Egypt to collect foodstamps, government housing, and free medical care. They were escaping a first century Holocaust.
Jesus’ parents weren’t refugees in a foreign nation, but lawful visitors and legal residents of a different province in their empire.
Worship the one this Christmas who was born as a babe and laid in a manger, but don’t let him be used for the purpose of liberal propaganda.