An Evangelical Christian Perspective: National ID
For some, national ID cards conjure up images of a totalitarian regime. Others are afraid that this is the prelude to having 666 stamped on their forehead. But in this new warfare, where the enemy hides among the citizenship, we may have no other choice. Furthermore, illegal immigration is out of control. It is time for our government to enforce the law or open the borders to everyone.
In a free society we cherish human rights, but we are not guaranteed the right to anonymity. Unless you are up to something, what fear would you have of being identified as an American citizen? We could all learn from the attitude of Jesus, who said, “I spoken openly to the world . . . and I spoke nothing in secret.” I don’t fear the truth–I would be glad to have a card that verifies who I say I am, and especially a card that verifies that the other guy is who he says he is.
Some claim a national identification card would be an infringement of civil rights. How can it be any more an infringement of civil rights than a drivers license or a social security card? Sure there is freedom in not having to present a card when boarding a plane, but let’s not confuse an inconvenience with an infringement of civil rights.
The big picture in view is the Biblical truth that righteousness brings freedom, and sin brings bondage.
“The truth will set you free . . . everyone who commits sin is a slave of sin.” (John 8)
It is a universal principle that the more sin we have from within and without, the more freedoms we must forfeit. Liberty works only for those who live among the righteous.
My parents gave me the freedom to walk to school when I was a first grader, but I can’t let my first grader have that freedom because there is too much evil out there. To curb drugs, some schools have banned innocent items such as book bags and beepers. Sin in society inconveniences all of us—the more sin, the more we must be inconvenienced for the sake of safety.
We rightly fear surrendering essential personal freedoms for the sake of security. Christians believe that it is the antichrist who will come and entice the world to relinquish all control to him in exchange for peace and prosperity. Nevertheless, we should not be so naïve to believe we can live without being inconvenienced in an evil world.
Most lawmakers are opposed to national ID cards, so I don’t expect we will see them any time soon. But expect attitudes to change drastically if we have to suffer another terrorist attack.
Bradford E Winship
Laurence Harbor, NJ