For the last several days, one of the key stories dominating headlines focuses on the senseless murder of Kathryn Steinle. Francisco Sanchez, a five time deported alien with seven felonies under his belt, shot her in cold blood on a San Francisco pier. The young woman, with a life full of potential, perished because the “City by the Bay” harbored this known felon, protecting him from deportation because of the city’s “sanctuary” status.
Across America, illegals can find refuge in over 300 different counties and cities, but the recent murder of Ms. Steinle has precipitated the debate over whether such sanctuaries should actually exist or if they’re even legal. Pundits expect this most recent crime and the existence of illegal havens to be a political hot potato going into the 2016 election cycle. Ideologies range from Donald Trump’s
“send all the illegals packing”
to Fox News Contributor Jehmu Greene’s characterization of illegals as
Some armchair theologians argue “sanctuary cities” are fine because the Bible says so.
That’s where the line must be drawn.
People who believe sanctuary cities are biblical, confuse sanctuary cities with “cities of refuge” as described in the Old Testament book of Numbers. Numbers 35:11-34 teaches that a city of refuge was a place a person could flee to if he was responsible for the death of another individual. GotQuestions.org shares the following about the cities of refuge:
The Mosaic Law stated that anyone who committed a murder was to be put to death (Exodus 21:14). But for unintentional deaths, God set aside these cities to which the murderer could flee for refuge (Exodus 21:13). He would be safe from the avenger—the family member charged with avenging the victim’s death (Numbers 35:19)—until the case could go to trial. The congregation would judge to find if the attacker acted unintentionally. If he did, he would return to the city of refuge and live there safely until the death of the high priest who was in office at the time of the trial, at which point he could return to his property. If the attacker left the city of refuge before the death of the high priest, however, the avenger would have the right to kill him (Numbers 35:24-28).
In other words, the city of refuge was a place for the accused to await trial and find safe harbor from vigilante justice. Sanctuary cities? Not so much.
Sanctuary cities shelter known alien lawbreakers from prosecution and deportation efforts by the Federal Government. These efforts to shield illegals ignore the Federal immigration laws. Republican Representative Duncan Hunter from California will again introduce legislation targeting sanctuary cities. His bill amends the Immigration and Nationality Act to restrict funding to any locale ignoring federal immigration policies. In other words, authorities serving in sanctuary cities would be once again authorized and instructed to question the
“citizenship or immigration status, lawful or unlawful, of any individual.”
Of course this outrages the far left , those who are unapologetically politically correct, and those who fear “targeting” of minorities.