Friday, November 25, 2011

We Are Watching the Tower of Babel Fall, Again 

The EU was about one thing from the beginning, and one thing only- the desire to overcome the curse of God and achieve peace for themselves, without submitting to the rule of Christ.

It is difficult for Americans to appreciate how deeply scarring the two world wars were for Europe.  Much of their land was bombed, their families and homes killed, monstrous atrocities committed on all sides, their economies wrecked.  They desired at all costs to avoid this fate ever again.  After the war, they set about the project of European Union.  This project was never workable, and was widely criticized on exactly the grounds that we now see it failing.  In this article by Danien Hannan, all the faults of the European Union are laid out well, as well as the fact that all of this was predicted by many from the beginning.

But I think Hannan gets something not quite right.  He says,
Why? What were they thinking? If you listen carefully to what Euro-integrationists were saying when the single currency was launched, you hear a subtext. It's not so much that they liked the euro, it's that they disliked the people who opposed it.
He says that the European Union is not truly an economic or political project, but a tribal one.  Here he starts to get close to the real issue.  But in his article, he quotes Angela Merkel saying something that shows us the real issue at heart.
Nobody should take for granted another 50 years of peace and prosperity in Europe, and that's why I say, if the euro fails, Europe fails. We have a historical obligation: to protect by all means Europe's unification process begun by our forefathers after centuries of hatred and bloodshed.
They are terrified of war.  Rightly so- war is terrifying.  And so they continue down this path despite the fact that reality has vetoed their dreams.  Or even more specifically, God has.  He who sits in the heavens shall laugh (Psalm 2) as they attempt to seize the benefits of the kingdom of God by force.

They want peace, but the reason they will not have peace is that they are at war with the Prince of Peace, Jesus Christ.  As long as that war continues, they can never have peace.  They are like the false prophets of Isaiah's day crying out, "Peace, Peace" when there is no peace.

Without the Christian perspective this can never be understood.  The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse are the agents of God's will, destroying all those who rebel against the rule of King Jesus .  One of those horsemen is famine, which we are experiencing just a little bit of in the western world right now, as our foolish dreams are destroying our prosperity.  Another one of those horsemen is war, and that crimson rider will no doubt be making his appearance soon.  Angela Merkel knows it instinctively, and is terrified, which is why she still desperately pursues her dream.  This is why those pushing European Union will continue to do so even as it becomes more and more obvious that it is hopeless.  This is why the socialists in our own country will continue to push their dream here.  This is why those pushing the increase of the power of the state will never stop, no matter how badly they fail, no matter how thoroughly their lies are exposed.  They will never stop, because the only option is to face the judgment of God, and this they cannot do.

We cannot enjoy the benefits of the kingdom of God, one of which is peace, unless we submit to the ruler of that kingdom. God will destroy any attempt to avoid His judgment and reject the rightful rule of Jesus Christ, His Son, to whom He has given the kingdom.  Just as He did at the tower of Babel.

From Genesis 11:

 3 Then they said to one another, "Come, let us make bricks and bake them thoroughly." They had brick for stone, and they had asphalt for mortar. 4 And they said, "Come, let us build ourselves a city, and a tower whose top is in the heavens; let us make a name for ourselves, lest we be scattered abroad over the face of the whole earth." 5 But the LORD came down to see the city and the tower which the sons of men had built.
 6 And the LORD said, "Indeed the people are one and they all have one language, and this is what they begin to do; now nothing that they propose to do will be withheld from them. 7 "Come, let Us go down and there confuse their language, that they may not understand one another's speech." 8 So the LORD scattered them abroad from there over the face of all the earth, and they ceased building the city. 9 Therefore its name is called Babel, because there the LORD confused the language of all the earth; and from there the LORD scattered them abroad over the face of all the earth.
They desired to make a name for themselves, to make themselves great.  I once heard a liberal atheist say that of all the crimes committed by God in the Bible, this one in Genesis 11 was the greatest. I now understand what he meant.  From his perspective, Genesis 11 shows God's intention of preventing man from ever avoiding the effects of His curse, no matter how hard they try.  Man can never unite, can never work together, can never cooperate in their schemes.  War and division will always plague them, because God decreed it.  They cry peace, peace, but there is no peace.

The thing that is destroying the European Union is division.  The Greeks are not the Germans and never will be.  Their different cultures, different histories, and ancient divisions cannot be overcome by acts of parliaments, by bureaucrats in Brussels.

Socialists point to the relatively successful welfare states in places like Japan and Sweden as the model.  Those welfare states work, to the degree that they do, because those populations have high work ethics and a high degree of cultural homogeneity. (America paying for their military defense is a big help too.)  But what both of those cultures are now discovering is that a welfare state, over time, destroys the very characteristics that make it work.  It destroys the work ethic and the cultural homogeneity.

Because again, God's rule cannot be vetoed.  Peace, prosperity, success and safety come only one way- by submission to the kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  It will come no other way.

But the children of the Beast, the unbelievers of this world, will continue their war, no matter what plagues God visits on them.  They worship the Beast, the power of the State, who is the servant of that old dragon, Satan, and are under the power of the false prophet, the lying philosophies and religions of the world, that convinces men that somehow this time it will be different.  It won't be different.  The Tower of Babel is falling again- as it did for the Soviets in 1990, and for the Nazis in 1945, and for the Kaiser and the shoguns and Napoleon and Genghis Khan and Caesar and Nebuchadnezzar and all that went before.  Jesus is the King of kings and Lord of lords and will smash the nations of the world with a rod of iron.

Psalm 2, again:

 10 Now therefore, be wise, O kings; Be instructed, you judges of the earth.
 11 Serve the LORD with fear, And rejoice with trembling.
 12 Kiss the Son, lest He be angry, And you perish in the way, When His wrath is kindled but a little. Blessed are all those who put their trust in Him.

Blessed are all those who trust in Him.  And for that, today, I am very thankful.


Yet it is the Gospel that overcomes those very language barriers (Acts 2). While Babylon falls by trying to unite the world on her own rebellious terms, the Church of God overcomes even the gates of hell.
Good post. I wonder what Europe is going to look like once this all shakes out and I wonder just how much this will impact the U.S.
A great point, Matt. Thanks for commenting. Yes, it is Pentecost, the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, which begins the reversal of the damage. Nothing man did overcame the curse- it is God's grace that overcomes the curse, and the gift of tongues is a beautiful sign of that promise.

And yes, it will be interesting to see how it all shakes out. I have a feeling that economically we're in for a pretty tough decade, and I will be very surprised if we get through it without some pretty serious wars.
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