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Scott Morrison has painted himself as a man of God. However, he constantly contravenes the articles of faith he supposedly believes.
My wife asked me to write this letter because it’s been bugging her, too.
We are not religious people. We believe in the doctrine of “treating people with kindness and respect”, which could arguably come from any culture or religion on Earth. You, however, are a Christian. You derive much of your moral compass from the words in the Bible, which are ostensibly (I’m not only a non-believer, but a Jew, so critically examining religious texts is kind of our jam) – from God and Jesus and his followers. They meticulously, through quotes, allegory and parable, lay out the rules for how one must live.
And yet, you seem to be breaking some core tenants of your own faith.
In Judaism, it is laid out that one must accept a stranger as if they were a Jew. It is recognised that we are all, at some point in our lives, strangers.
In Exodus 23:9 it says, “Do not oppress a foreigner; you yourselves know how it feels to be foreigners, because you were foreigners in Egypt.”
And though I am loathe to quote Leviticus, I’m sure you must be familiar with Leviticus 19:34, “The foreigners residing among you must be treated as native-born. Love them as yourself, for you were foreigners in Egypt. I am the Lord your God.” Refugees must be treated as native-born. As if they are your family. God is literally saying in this book, which you as a man of faith must take to heart, that refugees deserve to be respected.
Your book is not so different. In Matthew 25: 31-40, Jesus says that those at his right hand are blessed for, “I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me.”
Foreigners and strangers are also referenced in Ephesians 2:19, “Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and strangers, but fellow citizens with God’s people and also members of his household.”
It is made clear that welcoming strangers is a *good thing*. Bringing them into the fold is a *good thing.* That all people, no matter race, creed, colour or gender are of equal dignity.
So why are you so insistent in locking them up in prison camps? In stealing them away in the night away from welcoming communities? In deporting native-born children with disabilities?
I seem to recall a story about Jesus healing the sick, not kicking them out of the temple. That was the tax collectors. Similar tax collectors to those who used our tax money to re-open Christmas Island instead of doing literally anything else.
You, as a man of faith, must know that God doesn’t allow things to happen, he moves through people. At least, this is what I’ve been told by the faithful. God won’t help you by intervening, but by moving through someone else, or by giving you the strength to do something yourself.
Well, God isn’t going to look after these refugees, Scott. He isn’t going to smash the walls of the prison, or build a bridge to a better world, or smite those who have done them wrong.
In your view of the world, God has given you the power and responsibility of the office, and you have the ability to help these people by bringing them here and giving them better lives.
Why do you choose, instead, to surround yourself with people who want DNA tests to prove peoples’ citizenship? Why do you actively choose to be crueller when, instead, you could be kinder?
Your Christ was a radical, someone who believed in radical love for his fellow man. If you really believe in him and his message, then you must believe that he defied authorities in order to do what was right.
Your Christ was a radical, someone who believed in radical love for his fellow man. If you really believe in him and his message, then you must believe that he defied authorities in order to do what was right. He didn’t do it just so you could be “saved” in future and then behave with impunity. He did it because he had a set of values. Values which you allege to believe in, but seem to be ignoring.
I’m not accustomed – or fully comfortable – arguing on religious grounds. But your faith seems to be quite an important part of your life. I believe that there must be a separation of church and state, but I understand that we are all people driven by our own versions of moral codes. Your actions seem incongruent with your belief systems.
So either no one is telling you the truth; you are fundamentally misunderstanding the word of your religion; or you simply do not care.
I don’t know which is worse, but either way, you are letting yourself down as a leader and as a Christian. I know some good priests who would be free to illuminate anything you might be confused about. Don’t be embarrassed, we all get confused sometimes. Maybe you just need someone to talk to.