Although I am interested in politics, and believe our religious convictions apply to our political actions, I do not often delve into specific political figures on this particular blog. Issues, yes, but not specific people. This post will be an exception. Politically, we are living in exceptional times. It is really no surprise to anyone anymore that the US president, if not an outright xenophobe himself, willingly and purposefully panders to supporters in his base that are xenophobic. He has found it exceedingly beneficial, both in his election campaign of 2016 and now in his presidency, to create a culture of fear and an us vs. them mentality between citizens of the US and foreigners - particularly foreigners who are darker and poorer.
His most recent tweet no longer shocks us as it should, but it does serve to highlight his utilization of xenophobia and racism.What makes these tweets even more racist than xenophobic is that they obviously rely more on skin color than on country of origin, since three of the four women of color he refers to were born in the US, the fourth came to the US when she was 12, and all four are US citizens:
But these tweets are really just the most recent iteration of the presidential posture on "foreigners." I still cannot wrap my head around how he maintains the support of a significant percentage of white evangelicals in the USA when his positions (not just his character) are so diametrically opposed to the life and teachings of Christ.
There's a beautiful Greek work that appears twice in the New Testament, and is the exact opposite of the xenophobia that President Trump embodies and encourages in his supporters. This word is philoxenia, from two different Greek words meaning "brotherly love" (philo) and "foreigner" or "stranger" (xenia). The first of these passages is Romans 12:13 and the second is Hebrews 13:2. I'll leave them here and pray that the word does not return void.
"Let love be genuine; hate what is evil, hold fast to what is good; love one another with mutual affection; outdo one another in showing honor. Do not lag in zeal, be ardent in spirit, serve the Lord. Rejoice in hope, be patient in suffering, persevere in prayer. Contribute to the needs of the saints; extend hospitality to strangers." - Romans 12:9-13
"Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by doing that some have entertained angels without knowing it." - Hebrews 13:2