The disintegration of the EU is not the end of the world. It is a sign that the end of the world is anything but nigh.
Western culture as we know it is dying at the hands of usurpers, traitors and prodigals. Even the worst rulers throughout Christian history at least paid lip service to Christ and the Bible, but in Europe today that heritage is openly disparaged.
Race, tribe and religion were rightly identified as the causes of the region’s regular and escalating conflicts and rejected in favor of reason and solidarity. But it turns out that these are not enough to satisfy the hunger for identity in even the most civilized societies. “Blanket” utopian theories of all stripes, left, right and center, have now failed. The prosperity which the secular West aspired to and finally achieved has been quickly exposed as nothing but a means to the same end, and that end is death. Man cannot live on economic theory alone. The voices of the past – ethnicity, territory and faith – still lay claim to the future, and are calling us to violence once again.
Without a racial identity, a common pledge of allegiance or a confession of faith, however misguided or entangled these might be, men become disenfranchised from history. This not only explains the directionless policies of Western elites and the self-conscious sterility of the cultural “orphans” over whom they preside, it also explains the attraction of radical Islam for hopeless young men. Like Cain, men without true fathers inevitably seek out a substitute for their lost brotherhood in predatory gangs. We are irrevocably the sons of Adam, creatures of soil and blood and confession, the very things which secularism denies us. These are the things which Christianity employed to bring out the best in young men, and also the very things which fascism, Islam and BLM have hijacked in order to call out the worst.
Disputes over soil, blood and confession caused the European wars, but an economic union manufactured through uninspired bureaucracy and neurotic legislation could only ever paper over the cracks. A single currency, the Euro, without a single seat of power has been exposed as unworkable. The buck has to stop somewhere, and out of simple necessity Germany has become the bearer of responsibility – and thus of power. It should be no surprise that the European Union, which began as a catalyst for trade, finds a claim to statehood to be the next pragmatic step in its quest for “equality” among its members. Those who decried a united EU anthem did so because they understood it to be the summoning up of the very golem they had vowed to banish, the creation and animation of a continental army under a single command. If unity cannot be encouraged, it will be enforced.
The exit of Britain from the European Union is the latest inconvenient truth for the prophecy experts, yet another unforeseen event which renders most dispensational eschatological charts obsolete. But as is their practice, those in this misguided, opportunistic school simply take new cues from the newspaper headlines, now opting for less Eurocentric interpretations. Since the political union of the big players in modern Europe was understood by many Christians to be stage-setting for a coming Antichrist, the looming demise of the EU is almost a disappointment for the doomsayers in the Church. Obsession with denouncing the evils of the zeitgeist (rather than focusing on and proclaiming hope in Christ) inevitably leads to a form of eschatological Stockholm Syndrome.
The good news is that the reign of Christ is not a future golden age. It is now. It began at His ascension, when He was given all power in heaven and on earth, and His rule continues in the midst of His enemies. His first decree was judgment upon the Herods, upon Temple worship and its rebellious post-Pentecost animal sacrifices, and the predictions of these events are misinterpreted by nearly all schools of modern theology. Almost all of the texts upon which the Last Days clock watchers base their paradigm were fulfilled in the first century, describing the imminent end of the Old Covenant rather than the distant culmination of the New. Their identification of the characters and figures with modern day players on the world stage has resulted in a history of failed predictions.
Despite their faults, the doomsayers do read the Bible. The theme of a global conspiracy of nations against the people of God does indeed run throughout the Scriptures. And as Christians, as prophets to those nations and their rulers, part of our job description is indeed to understand the times. With Christ enthroned in heaven, the task of the Church is to read current events, no matter how tragic or unsettling, in the same way as we read the events in the Book of Acts, that is, as decrees of Jesus on behalf of His conquest of the world in this age. Rightly understood, the Bible shows us that Brexit is solid proof that the end of the world is anything but nigh.
The Purpose of the Nations
Since there is strength in unity, “divide and conquer” is a tactic used historically by military strategists and employed today by subversive lobby groups and politicians. Even the Apostle Paul split a hostile audience of gathered Jews into their respective theological camps, setting them against each other, simply by mentioning the word anastasia. However, the strategy was invented by God. The Lord sends darkness and confusion among those who rebel against Him and brings unity of mind and purpose by the Spirit to those who honor Him. When His enemies gather against His people, He scatters their armies like chaff and gathers His saints like grain. This recurring “harvest” theme is what underlies the existence of the nations throughout history, including those of our own day.
The first unholy gathering was the intermarriage of the Sethite priesthood with the pagan kings descended from Cain. The flood was a judgment upon a unity on earth that was in rebellion against heaven. As in Eden, priesthood was usurped by kingdom, resulting in the end of atoning animal sacrifices. The rejection of God’s mercy and forgiveness resulted in a plague of vengeful bloodshed. Those who died in the flood atoned for their own sins.
God began a new world in Noah, but before long another godless gathering of families and tribes was instituted. History repeats itself, but each iteration builds upon the last. This revolt was more self-conscious, a godless appropriation of the wisdom and maturity of Noah. Where mankind united before the flood with no worship, they now united in false worship, in idolatry. They lusted after a name, a unifying identity, outside of that which God had given them (Genesis 11:4). Over Babel, the Lord said, “Behold, they are one people, and they have all one language, and this is only the beginning of what they will do. And nothing that they propose to do will now be impossible for them” (Genesis 11:6). The people realized not only that unity is strength, but that lasting unity is spiritual – confessional – even when such unity is an intentional rebellion against God. Unlike the the flood, the judgment this time was social rather than “creational,” scattering the people not only in language groups, but in a confusion of their religious confession. James Jordan writes:
“The origin of many tongues and nations comes at the Tower of Babel. We read in Genesis 11:1 that the whole earth was of one lip and had one set of words. It is important to understand that “lip” does not refer to language, but to religious belief, as a concordance study of this term will reveal… The people built a city and a tower; the city a cultural unit gathered by their one language, and the tower a religious artifact built in terms of their one belief-system. In Genesis 11:6-9 we read that God attacked their tower and scattered the people in terms of their “lip”, their religious beliefs. The foundational scattering was not in terms of language and culture, but in terms of religion. Instead of one idolatrous system in the world, there came to be many. To be sure, from an objective perspective all of these idolatries are pretty much the same, but the nations do not think so. There is hardly a dime’s worth of difference between Molech and Chemosh, but the Moabites and Ammonites did not think they were the same at all. There is hardly a dime’s worth of difference between Leninism and Maoism, but the Russians and Chinese did not think so. Until the nations turn to the true faith, God keeps them at war with one another in terms of their idolatries, and thus keeps them weak. Language, however, was also diversified. The original tongue (almost certainly Hebrew, or proto-Hebrew) was scattered into thousands. This also helped keep the nations divided and relatively powerless.” 1
This scattering resulted in the division of land among the various nations as an inheritance (during the lifetime of Peleg, Genesis 10:25). Each nation had its own priest-king like Noah, the prime biblical example of a holder of this office being Melchizedek. This is why elements of the history recorded in the Bible, although corrupted in various ways after Babel, persisted in cultures across the world, in their myths and traditions, in their sacrifices and their frequent fascination with stepped towers ascending to heaven.
The Office of Israel
Since Noahic priest-kingdom was now corrupt, a more fundamental division was required – the circumcision. This division differed from the judgment upon Babel, since circumcision established and maintained a global demarcation between priesthood and kingdom. As Abraham’s miraculous offspring became family, then tribe, then nation, Israel was set apart from the other nations in increasing degrees until the ultimate “wall of enmity” was ratified in the Law of Moses, the Covenant made at Sinai, the first Pentecost. Since unity is strength, all mankind was irrevocably divided into Jew and Gentile that all mankind might be conquered.
The shift in the book of Genesis from global events to tribal concerns is thus not primitive parochialism but an advance towards more faithful advocacy before God on behalf of all people. The “table of nations” in Genesis 10 lists 70 nations, and God chose Abram, a single seed, from one of those nations. He began to build in him a single nation that would serve as the legal representative of all the others. Just as there were 70 nations, so 70 people, the house of Jacob, went down to Egypt. So also there were 70 palm trees around the “Edenic” oasis at Elim in Exodus 15, 70 elders represented Israel on Mount Sinai in Exodus 24, and at the Feast of Booths (also known as “Ingathering”), Israel offered 70 bulls on behalf of the nations (Numbers 29:12-34). In The Cycle of the Jewish Year, Dr. Yaacov Vainstein states that the 70 bulls were “offered for the welfare and well-being of the seventy nations of the world… It was a call to the human race to take note that without the Law of God, without God’s kingship and partnership in man’s destinies, the world cannot survive.”
Mike Bull is a graphic designer in the Blue Mountains of Australia and author, most recently, of Inquiétude.
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|1.||↑||James B. Jordan, “Concerning the Nations,” Open Book Newsletter No. 29, October 1996.|