I write this article as someone who voted for the UK to leave the EU in the referendum in 2016. Maybe I voted in haste and am repenting at leisure! I think like most British people, I just want Brexit to be resolved one way or the other, so we can get on with our lives!
Many Christians, myself included, have been debating what we think God’s will is in the whole Brexit saga.
I think the UK church has generally been quite good at remaining united in the good news of Christ, despite the fact we’re probably as divided as the rest of the country on Brexit.
To be honest, I’m not sure how helpful pontificating about Brexit is, interesting as I personally find it!
Firstly, as Solomon says in Ecclesiastes, he who watches the wind will not reap. In other words, a farmer who spends all his time weather watching isn’t going to harvest anything. In other words, if as Christians, we become obsessed with Brexit or politics in general, we’re not going to see anyone come to faith in Jesus. Our raison d’etre is not to second guess God, but to tell people about Jesus.
Secondly, who has known the mind of our Creator? Who are we to assume we know what God’s up to in Europe? I’m reminded of falsely optimistic prophets in Jeremiah’s day when I see all these “prophetic” declarations that revival’s round the corner in the UK in these days.
Instead of arrogantly assuming we know what God’s plan is for Britain and Europe, why don’t we just faithfully proclaim Christ to Brits and Europeans alike?
Yes, God does reveal many things in His word. There is an argument for the idea that the EU has feet of clay and is doomed to failure: after all, the polities of this world are going to give way to God’s kingdom. But our job isn’t to rebel against Babylon. Our job is to be good citizens of heaven as we live as strangers and exiles in the world.
Because the Christian’s purpose is to proclaim the gospel of God, the EU is a useful vehicle for us to make the most of freedom of movement to declare good news to native Europeans and migrants alike.
In a similar way, the Roman and British Empires were useful vehicles for Christians to preach Christ, without being colonialists ourselves. Paul travelled Roman roads and made the most of his Roman citizenship for the cause of Christ.
The gospel is good news for Brexiteers and Remainers alike. It’s good news for the British, Europeans, and immigrants. Jesus is able to unite Romans and barbarians alike, all people are welcome in His kingdom. We enter as sinners, and He makes us saints as He washes us in His blood and gifts us His Holy Spirit.