In the World—July 8, 2018

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The furor over immigrant families has been building for several weeks, but it gained new heat last week with calls to abolish ICE, the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency. Many are saying this, but Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s call got the most attention. She is a young activist who last week overthrew a 10-term representative in New York’s Democratic primary. Her win was, in effect, a statement charging the leadership in both parties in Washington with being unjust in the way immigration policy is being enforced.


Many Americans find the justice issue perplexing in terms of what we want our leaders to do. However, Jesus makes the matter more real to us when he talks about how we as individuals must practice justice, whether we are leaders or citizens. Each of us can find some area of personal hypocrisy; each of us can admit that making justice, mercy and righteousness part of our daily conduct can be a challenge.

  1. What do you think would be the result of abolishing the agency entrusted with enforcing immigration laws? Can you offer a better solution to the problem?
  2. How do you understand the terms, “justice, mercy and righteousness” to apply to actions and attitudes in your personal life?
  3. Why do we find it so easy to tell others how to live their lives (as the Pharisees did), but so difficult to avoid hypocrisy ourselves?
  4. Why do we focus on simple outward acts to prove the validity of our faith, but neglect the attitudes of the spirit? What is the remedy?
  5. How would you apply Jesus’ teaching on this matter to church leadership?

—Charles R. Boatman

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Jim Eichenberger

Author Jim Eichenberger

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