When we realise the brevity of our life and the temporariness of this world, reading Luke 21: 5-19 suggests more than ‘a springboard for proclaiming God’s judgement on society.’ The passage warns us about becoming too fixated on temporary human and political institutions. History goes in cycles. Today, millions are struggling to make sense of a changing world and declining churches especially when globalisation continue to suck patriotism and spirituality from the top. The sad news is that unconcerned leaders fed nationalism and spirituality to the bottom hence, as the first signs of the end times, people are easily led astray.
Peter Wilding, the author of the bestselling book, What Next: Britain’s future in Europe, remains a point of reference about the Brexit and other global dvisions and chaos. Wilding writes that the word he invented, Brexit, could “sadly be an epitaph for a nation’s decline and possible fall.” Wilding said, “Brexit became a catchy trigger to unleash the demons that followed … Brexit’s my fault: How the word I invented could be an epitaph for the nation’s decline.” Brexit, the 2016 word of the year, courtesy of the Oxford English Dictionary goes beyond the intention of the referendum but rather, ‘… reveal the hopeless mistakes by arrogant people made on the way which have led us to this place.’ Wilding said, “My own personal J’accuse is heartfelt. Because Brexit was a chronicle of a death foretold. The fault, not of the lions who are the British people, but of the donkeys who led them.”
Is it possible that the United Kingdom’s Brex-mas election will put an end to the demons of Brexit? Britain’s missionaries had always obeyed the Bible and spread Scriptural holiness across the continent just as our statesmen had always sought to lead and not leave the continent. John Wesley was a man of One Book, the Bible. He did not interpreted it to suit the immorality of his time. William Pitt sought “a treaty to which all parties of Europe should bind themselves to protect and support each other.” Churchill’s support of a united Europe remains a positive reference point.
The highest hypocrisy is to talk about Brexit while migrants were found in lorries or containers in the UK. What is the understanding of Brexit between the UK and other European human trafficking operations like the Bulgarian-Hungarian, Irish operators? Remainer or Brexiteer and other human inventions outside God’s plan and commands are not only an epitaph for the nation’s decline but also for the decline and funeral of the church.
The hope of the world is beyond any human institutions and inventions hence, whether Brexit – Remainer or Brexiteer, union with Jesus Christ is our hope of glory in the New Decade (Col 1:27). Beyond the divisive arguments and the sense of entitlement about the referendum of 2016 as the greatest democratic exercise in our history, the high price and demands of Brexit calls for a rethink. Today, the four nations of the United Kingdom are divided by class, by region, by economic status. Beyond our poisoned politics, families are divided and friends are alienated. Just as the origin of “Brexit” is a sad word, any human institution without remaining faithful in Christ will always lead to chaos and disaster.
Let us forget emotion and let us look at the scriptural facts and foundation of our nation. The Gospel of Jesus Christ was our foundation and the price of remaining faithful in Jesus Christ, the True Vine goes beyond political or inclusive correctness and movement. To avoid further unpredictability to the Brex-mas election, whether Remainer or Brexiteer in the British political context, God is calling United Kingdom to remain faithful in union with Jesus Christ, the True Vine, our eternal hope. In the beginning, a missional remaining faithful view in Christ as the True Vine pushed and made Britain to excel and lead not only in Europe but in the global context.
The world’s True Vine is not in any political leaders, religious, economic or human institutions. The True Vine is an allegory or parable found in John 15 given by Jesus to describe his disciples as branches of himself, who is described as the “true vine”, and God the Father the “husbandman.” To “abide” is to live, continue, or remain hence, to abide in Christ is to live in Him or remain faithful in Him. When a person is saved, he or she is described as being “in Christ” The difference between those abiding in Christ and those not abiding in Christ is the difference between the saved and the unsaved.
Among some of the principles of remaining in Jesus Christ as the True Vine is to keep, live, and operate through the lens of God’s commandments. In the Gospel of John 15, the phrase, “abide in me,” is the Christ’s desire that His disciples continue to obey the words that He had spoken to them so that their lives would be full of joy. There is no true joy without ordering our lives through God’s abiding order. To remain in Christ is to do what God says.
Abraham kept the primary principle of remaining in Christ by abiding in God’s commandment even against the dictate of his emotion and feeling. Job kept the principle of remaining in Christ by not denying his faith but abiding in God’s commandment. Beloved, Brexit, political parties, wealth, sexuality, positions or titles, and other things you enjoy here on earth are not the True Vine. They are all temporary, unless you keep God’s commandments, you cannot remain in Christ. Let us pray against further unpredictability to the December 12 election outcome.