Editors Note: The article below is from James McBride of the Churches of God Outreach Ministries and gives us the background of the vote taking place in the UK to leave or stay with the European Union.
Most political parties lay claim to be a ‘one nation party’, while radical groups seek to demolish borders between nations. Do the Christian Scriptures have a say?
The print and the broadcast media are increasingly focused on the coming in-out UK referendum: stay—or leave our association with the European Union. The future of the United Kingdom hangs in the balance, the core question being the vital one of national sovereignty.
The recent attempt to reform the EU was a failure, and the Prime Minister walked away empty-handed. As is so often the case, the public is now drowning in a torrent of misleading statistics designed to persuade, and the date chosen (June 23) avoids angry public reaction to the expected summer influx of immigrants.
The Prime Minister has brokered a deal which he claims secures our sovereignty as part of the Union, while those who wish to leave our political association with Europe believe little has been achieved. Big political and business ‘guns’ have lined up on opposite sides of the increasingly acrimonious argument.
The concept of a ‘United States of Europe’ was conceived centuries ago—the ‘European dream’—and took more concrete form over the last sixty years, now with twenty-eight nation members.
That ‘dream’ was conceived in the early Christian centuries, and has since been pursued by emperor after emperor, dictator after dictator, Pope after Pope. Napoleon, for example wanted to see ‘…one people throughout Europe’. Mussolini and Hitler, too, had their dreams of a United Europe. In 1965 Pope Paul VI said: ‘…The Holy See hopes to see the day when a new Europe will arise, rich with the fullness of its rich [Catholic] traditions’. And a decade later he said that the Church alone can ‘…re-awaken Europe’s Christian soul where its unity is rooted’ . In Austria (1983) the Pope stated: ‘…Europeans should overcome the menacing international confrontations of states and alliances and create a new united Europe from the Atlantic to the Urals’.