By Tyson Thorne

January 10, 2019

VsPelosi Large

On January 3, hours after becoming House Speaker, congresswoman Nancy Pelosi expressed her view about building a border wall, "The wall is, in my view, immoral..." I'd like to know what her moral standard is because, although she is Catholic, it is not the Bible. Ever since King David built a wall around Jerusalem (a wall that Nehemiah rebuilt at God's leading), walls have been important to the nation of Israel. Even today, Israel walls off parts of their border with Egypt and around some Palestinian communities to keep terrorists at bay. Israel has known from its beginning that walls work.

Israel is not, however, the United States of America. Is there any reason to think that a wall along the countries southern border would work? Any reason to think that it would be immoral? The answer to both questions is the same: it depends on the purpose.

On June 12, 1987 President Ronald Reagan gave a speech in Berlin that impacted the world. In his speech he issued a challenge to the president of Russia, "Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!" The wall he was referring to was the Berlin Wall, a structure erected after World War 2 when Germany was divided up, the eastern section going to Russia, the western remaining a part of Europe as Germany. The dividing line ran through the great city, and the Russians built a wall. It wasn't a border wall, however, and the purpose wasn't to keep people out but to keep them in. Russia was heavy-handed back in the day, and its citizens wanted out. The wall kept them in, kept them from defecting to the West, and kept them from freedom. Reagan challenged Russia to tear it down not because it was ineffective, but because it was immoral.

History teaches us that walls intended to protect, while imperfect (as the people of Jericho discovered, Joshua 6) can shield people from the acts of evildoers. It also teaches us that walls can be instruments of evil, keeping people captive for the purpose of oppression. In each case, the wall works. In each case, the purpose of the wall can be determined and judged. So what of the USA's desire to build a border wall?

It is argued that he purpose of a wall along the southern border is to protect America — it's people to be sure, but also its economy and the way of life that has made America a great nation. A border wall is intended to keep out drug traffickers, human traffickers, criminals and those who intend to do great harm and will help reduce our prison population and strains on our health care and education systems. While not a complete solution, a border wall helps America control immigration. All good and responsible reasons.

What are the objections? Pelosi outlined three. First, it will not accomplish its stated purpose. This surprises me, because we can observe today or in history that a border wall is almost always instrumental in protecting the citizens. My surprise goes beyond that, however. Since America has never had a border wall, how can anyone predict its effectiveness? Nancy Pelosi may have many abilities, but I'm willing to bet seeing all possible futures isn't one of them. The second objection, is that it is expensive. This is patently untrue. The president is asking for $5 billion, which sounds like a lot but is only 0.01% of the nations annual budget.

So it is this third objection, that a wall is immoral, that I address today. As a Catholic, I imagine Pelosi is familiar with Heaven's pearly gates. To what are those gates attached? Furthermore, in Revelation 21 John records for us the remaking of Heaven and Earth. This is after the second coming, after the thousand year reign of Jesus, after Satan's final defeat and after the Great White Throne Judgment. All evil is conquered, judged and put away. The new Earth is for the saints alone. There would be no need for protection, yet the new Jerusalem that comes from Heaven and descends to the Earth has, you guessed it, walls. Read about it here in verses 11 through 14:

The city possesses the glory of God; its brilliance is like a precious jewel, like a stone of crystal-clear jasper. It has a massive, high wall with twelve gates, with twelve angels at the gates, and the names of the twelve tribes of the nation of Israel are written on the gates. There are three gates on the east side, three gates on the north side, three gates on the south side and three gates on the west side. The wall of the city has twelve foundations, and on them are the twelve names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.

What is the purpose of this wall? To delineate the city and dwelling place of God from the rest of the new Earth. Not everyone will live in the new Jerusalem, and just as there are festivals celebrated today in Jerusalem so there will be in the new world. Coming to the place of God to celebrate will be extraordinary. If you read further into the chapter you will find a detailed description of the wall, including its foundation, measurements and the gates.

Walls are not inherently good or evil, moral or immoral. With the stated purpose of protection and immigration control I've concluded that there is nothing immoral about building a border wall. In fact, I think it is a responsible undertaking especially when seen as a small part of larger immigration reforms. Which brings me back to my original question: What, speaker Pelosi, is your moral standard?

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