BELIZE JOURNAL PT.1 on God given boundaries. At NEAB’s third annual meeting, a consistent theme ran through most of the messages. God has given boundaries to Belize—for marriage, family and nation—that we cross at our own dire peril. He has given boundaries to our home and family life. President Lance Lewis opened by exhorting parents to take responsibility for their children. Too many parents have let Satan into their homes. Lack of boundaries and parental monitoring and prayer means lack of spiritual armor (Eph. 6:12-18). As a result, parent leave their kids open to demonic attacks. No wonder the murder and suicide rate has risen so high.
NEAB VP Scott Stirm shared how we’ve sought to reconstruct the boundaries that the 2016 legalization of sodomy tore down. Catholics and evangelicals together represent 68 percent of Belize’s population. We worked together for seven years to shut Belize’s doors to the foreign LGBT agenda. Then the Chief Justice singlehandedly opened those doors, But we won the right to appeal his verdict through the Catholic Church’s status as an interested party.
We also sought to use the Church-State Commission to set moral boundaries to the government’s initially pro-LGBT gender policy. But two of the six church groups—Anglicans and Council of Churches—broke away from the Commission, contradicting their own previous morally conservative position papers. The Catholics remained on the Commission with three evangelical groups.
Those four groups issued strong new pro-family position papers on a wide array of sex-and-marriage related issues. But the government ignored them. And the Catholics’ efforts to appeal the sodomy ruling suffered during the strain of its transition to a new bishop, Lawrence Nicasio. We must redouble our prayers for them. And we must get ready to jump back in to support the Catholics when they renew their appeal of the sodomy ruling.
Pastor and TV journalist Louis Wade emphasized asserting our national boundaries. Our internal struggles for political and denominational turf must not distract us. We have a greater task of defending our external borders. The following shows that the Bible itself supports Belize’s claim. Acts 17:26-27 says,
“From one man He made every nation of men, that they should inhabit the whole earth. And He determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live. God did this so that men would seek Him and perhaps reach out for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us.”
God determined the times set for every nation. Louis declared that God set apart the New World for evangelism. In contrast, the Old World had become divided up mostly between Hindu, Buddhist, Muslim, Jew and Christian. The New World nations are predominantly Christian. The Pope in 1493 assigned the whole of the New World to Catholic Spain except for what is now Brazil, which he assigned to Catholic Portugal. But God Himself determined “the exact places where they should live.”
British pirates settled what is now Belize from the Caribbean side of Central America. Spaniards settled what is now Guatemala from Mexico on the Pacific side. Even today Guatemala’s population abounds near the Pacific Ocean, but thins out from west to east. Likewise, Belize’s population decreases from east to west. The Maya stood in the way of both of them expanding further. Therefore an 1859 treaty confirmed Belize’s still-enduring border with Guatemala. Also, God arranged for a reef to protect Belize on the east.
Spain has never exercised any authority over Belize. As proof, Louis pointed out that you cannot find any Spanish ruins in Belize, only Maya ruins. So Guatemala did not inherit Belize from Catholic Spain. On the contrary, God has preserved Belize for us as heirs to the mostly non-Catholic Christian British. But if Belizean churches don’t exercise our God-given spiritual authority over our claim, we may lose it.
NEAB Secretary George Ferrar related the most recent contacts between Guatemalan and Belizean church leaders… (See Border vote poses challenge to evangelicals.)
Due to their traditional education, most Guatemalan evangelicals believe Belize forms part of Guatemala. They support President Jimmy Morales. Nominally a Baptist, Morales’ platform included renewing the claim on Belize. For that reason we must make the most of our contacts with Guatemalan evangelicals as the ICJ referendum approaches. Together with them and with God we can influence the outcome, in the belief that God wants us to be good neighbors but also distinct neighbors.
Read more… about key topics which we covered.
DailyInsight. Without boundaries we are defenseless. With boundaries we can apply influence beyond our boundaries (see 2 Cor. 10:12-16)
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We need more understanding of our God given boundaries.