Well, it has finally happened! After 43 years of tumultuous marriage, British voters used the referendum on 23 June 2016, to announce their decision to divorce themselves from the European Union. Despite the threat of economic uncertainty; despite the possibility of tax increases; despite both political parties publicly supporting a ‘Remain’ vote, 51.8% of the people voted in favour of leaving and the die was cast.

David Cameron summed up the reason for the decision in this way: “I think people recognised the strength of the economic case for staying, but there was a very great concern about the movement of people and immigration, and I think that is coupled with a concern about the issues of sovereignty and the absence of control that there has been” (Final Speech to EU leaders in Brussels – 29 June 2016).

The upheaval has been enormous. The Prime Minister, David Cameron, has resigned; so has Nigel Farage of the UKIP party. The opposition Labour Party is in complete disarray. Global stock markets wiped a record $3 trillion off global markets in two days, ac­cording to data compiled by Standard and Poor’s Dow Jones Indices. This surpassed the previous record loss of $1.9 trillion which followed the collapse of Lehman Brothers in September, 2008. Additionally, a sharp sell-off in stocks around the world soon followed.

In a study done by the website, The Conversation, there was an article entitled ‘Hard Evidence: Analysis Shows Extent of Press Bias Towards Brexit.’ Their findings indicated that most of the newspapers aligned with ‘Leave’ had a more significant exposure to the working class newspaper readers and those in casual or no employment. This wide circulation ended up being one of the key factors in determining the outcome of the referendum vote.

Screaming headlines like this couldn’t fail to ignite nationalist ideals, which in the end won the day.

Article 50 and the Way Ahead

Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty means that the UK government has to formally notify the European Council that Britain intends to leave. This is the only legal mechanism to withdraw and, although David Cameron is currently refusing to trigger this article, it is expected to be invoked by the new Prime Minister. Once triggered, it will commence a two-year period in which the UK will negotiate its withdrawal and, once invoked, there is no way back into the EU unless by unanimous consent from all other member states.

Negotiations will involve revoking the European Communities Act which gives prevalence to EU law in the UK. It will also involve working through an estimated 80,000 pages of EU agreements, which have been enacted, and negotiating the UK’s future trading relations with the EU as well as with non-EU partners. The question of movement of services and capital will need to be resolved as well.

Results of the referendum by regional voting areas in the map (note that Gibraltar on the Iberian Peninsula is not pictured–they voted to remain) show a divided nation.

 

Europe’s Reaction

There is a general view that Europe is struggling with a dramatic turning point in its history.

German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, says there will be no turning back from Britain’s decision to leave the European Union after holding talks with Prime Minister David Cameron in Brussels. Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of an EU summit late on 28 June, Merkel said it was not a time for sorrow or anger and that Europe must simply deal with the situation it has been confronted with. “I want to say very clearly tonight that I see no way to reverse this (Brexit),” the German leader was quoted by Reuters as saying.

European leaders, facing the biggest threat to European unity since World War Two, are divided over how swiftly separation talks should start. Paris wants haste and German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, is urg­ing patience. European Commission President, Jean-Claude Juncker, said he wanted to “start immediately”.

Britain will also find itself in the anomalous posi­tion of remaining in NATO whilst outside of the EU. In a recent Newsweek interview (July 2016) the NATO Secretary General, Jens Stoltenberg, stated the following: “There is no denying that the world has become more dangerous in recent years. Moscow’s actions in Ukraine have shaken the European security order. Turmoil in the Middle East and North Africa has unleashed a host of challenges, not least the larg­est refugee and migrant crisis since the Second World War. We face security challenges of a magnitude and complexity much greater than only a few years ago. Add to that the uncertainty surrounding “Brexit” – the consequences of which are unclear – and it is easy to be concerned about the future.”

And yet there are many reasons to be confident. While it is for the UK and EU to chart their future relationship, Britain’s position in the Alliance is un­changed. The UK will continue to play an essential role in NATO – and hence in Euro-Atlantic security. This is important because the UK is a major contributor. British defence spending represents almost a quarter of what European Allies spend in total.”

We will wait with interest to see whether the Secretary General’s optimism will prevail. As we shall see later in the article, prophetically, Britain and the US will have less and less influence in NATO as time progresses.

Here is a copy of the front page of France’s Le Figaro which says, “Earthquake in Europe” and “eve­rything has changed” because of the UK vote. Its edi­torial makes a criticism – echoed widely in the European press – that the EU has become too remote from voters.

This is “the end of Europe as we knew it”, writes Philippe Gelie, and the EU must “review everything – methods, objectives, and participants”, in order to save itself.

Russia’s Reaction

Andrew Roth wrote this in the Washington Post on 24 June 2016: “MOSCOW – Many Russian politicians cheered Britain’s exit from the European Union on Friday, declaring the results a triumph of democracy and a failure of Western leadership that may help Russia rebuild ties with Europe after two years of economic sanctions. With Britian seen here as a primary source of perceived anti-Russian sentiment in Europe, Sergei Sobyanin, the mayor of Moscow, said that “without Great Britain in the EU, no-one will so zealously defend the sanctions against us”. “And it’s not long until a united Eurasia – about ten years,” he concluded.

One political commentator (Mark Galeotti from Vox) wrote this: “What Putin wants is a West too disu­nited and inward-looking to be able meaningfully to resist Russian adventurism in its self-claimed sphere of influence … Putin is also hoping that turmoil in Europe will infect NATO and undermine its coherence.”

Israel has experienced a very rocky relationship with the EU. This article appeared in Al Monitor on 1 July 2016: ‘Why Netanyahu quietly applauds Brexit’:

“Tissues are not in great demand in Jerusalem these days. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu did not shed any tears over the decision by the residents of the United Kingdom to withdraw from the European Union. According to the rules of Israel’s zero-sum game in the international arena, the weaker the gentiles, the stronger the Jews. The greater the anxiety in Brussels, the lower the tensions in Jerusalem. The governments of Europe are competing with the US admin­istration, goes the thinking in Jerusalem, for the championship of the Israel-haters league. The EU’s clipped wings improve the prospects of removing from its agenda the European threat to thaw the diplomatic freeze with the Palestinians and freeze construction in the settlements.”

Prophetic Position of Britain in Relation to Europe

There are several key prophecies relating to the position of Britain in the last days. Each picture presents us with a consistent theme – Britain will oppose the Russian-led invasion and will be first to support the Jewish people in the transition period between Armageddon and the establishment of the Kingdom.

 

The first of these key prophecies can be found in Ezekiel 38. When Gog invades Israel with its European and Middle Eastern allies it faces a protest from a coalition of like-minded powers, consisting of Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States together with the merchants of Tarshish with all the young lions (v13). The old lion, Tarshish, can be identified with Britain and she is accompanied by all her offspring. This indicates that Britain will be hostile to Russia and Europe at the time of the invasion. In addition to this, she is supported by all those countries who have been nurtured to maturity through Britain’s political and mercantile influence.

The second group of prophecies can be found in Daniel and Revelation relating to the national compo­sition of Catholic Europe just before our Lord’s return.

Revelation 17-18 provides a picture of the final phase of European power by depicting this system as a scarlet-coloured beast ridden by a shameless, blasphemous and blood-thirsty harlot. This graphic representation is an illustration of a compliant Europe, subject to a resurgent Papacy. The beast itself has an eighth head and ten horns (17:8-13). Without go­ing into too much detail the eighth head represents a unique power-sharing arrangement which began between the European emperors and the Popes from AD 800 onwards. John is informing us that a similar arrangement will exist at the time of the end – most likely a concord between the European Parliament and the Vatican.

As far as the ten horns are concerned, these ini­tially represented ten independent Barbarian powers which carved up the Roman empire from between AD 375-490 and laid the foundations for today’s modern European states.

This is what Brother Thomas had to say about Britain and these ten horns in Eureka (vol 3 black edi­tion, p173-174): “In the foregoing enumeration of the horns of the sea, I have made no mention of the Saxons and Danes, who issued forth from the Scandinavian and Germanian abyss against the Dragon province of Britannia. In all the lists of the horns I have seen, the Saxons have been made to figure as one; and, con­sequently, the Anglo-Saxons of Britain, now styled England, have been set down as one of the horns of the Beast. But this classification of England with the horns cannot be admitted. It is true that the Saxons and Angles issuing from Holstein and Schleswig, AD 449, conquered Britannia. But, instead of constituting themselves one horn, they founded seven kingdoms, styled Kent, Essex, Sussex, Wessex, East Anglia, Mercia, and Northumberland. These were called the Saxon Heptarchy; and were as distinct and independ­ent kingdoms as any of their ten contemporaries upon the Continent.

Another objection to England being numbered with the ten, is that she is not a country of the Great-Sea world. The ten horns were to ascend out of the Mediterranean upon which Daniel saw the tempest raging. Gaul, Spain, Italy, Illyria, Africa, and Dacia, are political sections of a terrene, whose waters, directly or indirectly mostly discharge themselves into the Mediterranean. But the British Isles afar off have no relation to it at all. As Origen says in Hom 6, AD 230, “The Britons are divided from our world.” They are no part of the Sea Monster’s interior maritime territory. Even in modern times they are three kingdoms, not a single horn only; and those three horns, the horn of England, the horn of Scotland, and the horn of Ireland, are more imperial than regal, and more Oriental than European.

The Roman Empire

But, blasphemous as Britain is in her constitutional ecclesiasticism, she protests against, and repudiates, the Chief Blasphemer of the world. She does not belong to the politico-ecclesiastical system, or body politic, of which he is the Mouth. She sends no ambassador to the Court of Rome; and though there may be spiritual imbeciles who have real, and crafty politicians who have feigned reverence for the Roman God and the mum­mery of his superstition, the heart of the British peoples is hardened against them with the impenetrability of adamant. This hostility is known and understood at Rome, where the will, but not the power, has always existed to reduce Britain to subjection to the so-called “Holy See.” In witness of this, there is the Spanish Armada, equipped and sent against England in the days of Elizabeth, at the instigation of the Court of Rome, that by the thumb-screw arguments of the Inquisition, the British nation might be brought within the pale of the Mediterranean Sea Monster, beyond which no heretical soul can be saved! No, the United Kingdom of England, Scotland and Ireland was never one of the ten horns.”

 

  • Psa 72:10 – “The kings of Tarshish and of the isles shall bring presents: the kings of Sheba and Seba shall offer gifts.”
  • Isa 60:9 – “Surely the isles shall wait for me, and the ships of Tarshish first, to bring thy sons from far, their silver and their gold with them, unto the name of the LORD thy God, and to the Holy One of Israel, because he hath glorified thee.”

 

Peering into the future

‘There are several stages remaining in relation to the prophetic destiny of Europe. When Russia takes Turkey (Dan 11:40), Gog will stand up as the great unifier of both eastern and western parts of the Roman empire (Dan 8:23-25). ‘The full extent of the undivided Roman empire can be seen in this map.

In addition to this, Gog will also domi­nate the territories represented by all four beasts. ‘Ihis will be a massive dominion, unseen before in history.

‘The second phase of Europe’s prophetic destiny will come after Gog is defeated upon the mountains of Israel. At this time the scarlet-coloured beast system will independently rise to power and resist the newly-elected king of Israel; the Lord Jesus Christ (Rev 17:12-14).

If we examine a map of the Western Roman Empire at its peak with the ad­dition of Charlemagne’s conquests and tributary states included, we can see the historical extent of the dominions of the scarlet-coloured beast as follows:

We can use this representation to demonstrate that the core countries that form part of the beast of the sea and beast of the earth systems (ie the scarlet-coloured beast) extend from Spain in the west to Poland, the Slovak Republic, Hungary, Slovenia and Croatia in the east.

If we compare this map with the Current member­ship of the European Union map we see an extensive dominion which embraces far more countries than the original scarlet-coloured beast countries.

‘There are several pos­sibilities which may occur if the prophetic map is to re-align with prophetic expectations. The first is that the European Union will embrace the territories of the undivided Roman empire so that when Gog takes Turkey, it takes over an extensive alliance already in place. ‘Ihis would mean that Turkey would receive EU membership.

The second possibility is that the European Union will shed a number of countries to align itself more historically to the Holy Roman Empire model.

This would imply a general exit of the Scandinavian countries as well as Greece, Romania and Bulgaria. If this were to happen these three latter countries might turn to Russia and join Putin’s Eurasian Union. If this scenario were to occur, when Russia takes Turkey, it would simply align its Eurasian Union with the European Union to cement together its extensive dominion.

Whatever the outcome, we will look with great interest at the future developments that Brexit has triggered.

Encouragement for Us

Within the space of 12 months our loving Father in heaven has given us two great signs in the political heavens to encourage us to remain steadfast in His

ways. the first sign was given last year when Russia suddenly appeared in Syria as the embryonic king of the north (Dan 11:40). From this base its influence will continue to grow as it absorbs the territory of the ancient Seleucid empire, ready to invade Turkey and Israel.

The second sign is in Britain’s decision to leave the European Union. She has no prophetic part to play in Europe, apart f rom being at the vanguard of resisting European policies to ally itself with the Russian host.

We can be very thankful that our understanding of the prophetic word is being confirmed by the events we see around us. We can be very thankful, too, that we are a step closer to the Lord’s imminent return.