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Chapter 11

European Political Unity

 

AT the end of April 1990, the twelve nations of the European Economic Community met in Dublin, the Republic of Ireland, in conference. Flushed with the euphoria which had arisen over the imminent unity of East and West Germany, the West German chancellor, Helmut Kohl, together with the French president, François Mitterand, urged the members of the community to work toward political integration. (Singapore Straits Times, April 30 1990)

Prime Minister Charles Haughey of Ireland, who was then president of the European Economic Community (a post which rotates every six months among the heads of the twelve member states), had called this special meeting to discuss the matter of German unity. Taking advantage of this extraordinary session, Kohl and Mitterand made a proposal to extend the meeting to discuss European political unity. The Franco-Germans expressed themselves in this letter:

Given the profound changes in Europe, the establishment of the EC internal market and the realization of economic and monetary union, we believe it is necessary to accelerate the political construction of the 12. (Ibid., April 21 1990)

These leaders left no doubt concerning the time frame that they envisaged:

Our objective is that these fundamental reforms—economic and monetary union as well as political union—take effect on January 1, 1993, after the ratification by national parliaments. (Ibid.)

It should not pass unnoticed that the two leaders referred to the European Economic Community, not as the EEC, but as the EC—the European Community. The latter abbreviation is growing in popularity as the emphasis for European unity is changing from a purely economic union to one of political significance.

Ever since the destruction of Imperial Rome, one conqueror after another has entertained ambitions to unite Europe under his authority. Men such as Charlemagne, Napoleon Bonaparte, Kaiser Wilhelm, and Adolf Hitler have pursued this delusion of grandeur, but each has decidedly failed in reaching his ambition.

Now we see, for the first time, an effort to unite European nations by peaceful means, simply relying upon their acquiescence. This initiative of Chancellor Kohl and President Mitterand is doomed to fail just as surely as did the efforts of dictators to achieve this aim by conquests. God’s mighty Word has spoken. In one of the great prophecies of Scripture, God outlined the history of the world from the days of Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, until the Second Coming of Christ. This vast stretch of prophetic time was viewed in a symbolic dream by King Nebuchadnezzar himself. In his dream, he saw a statue composed of a head of gold which represented his own kingdom of Babylon. This head surmounted the chest and arms of silver representing the Medo-Persian Empire which succeeded Babylon. The third portion of the statue consisted of an abdomen and thighs of bronze, representing the Grecian Empire. Next followed the legs of iron representing the mighty Roman Empire, which succeeded Greece.

But it is the feet which interest us today. Unlike the rest of the image’s body, these feet were not composed of metal alone, as Scripture tells us.

His legs of iron, his feet part of iron and part of clay . . . (Daniel 2:33)

The Bible makes perfectly plain that the iron kingdom of Rome would eventually be divided into the various nations of Europe; furthermore, in the history of this world, these nations would never again unite.

And whereas thou sawest the feet and toes, part of potter’s clay, and part of iron, the kingdom shall be divided; but there shall be in it of the strength of the iron, forasmuch as thou sawest the iron mixed with the miry clay. And as the toes of the feet were part of iron, and part of clay, so the kingdom shall be partly strong and partly broken. And whereas thou sawest the iron mixed with miry clay, they shall mingle themselves with the seed of men: but they shall not cleave one to another, even as iron is not mixed with clay. (Daniel 2:41–43)

John the Revelator spoke of the day when the ten horns (or the ten toes as they are depicted in Daniel) would represent the nations of Europe and would "have one mind." (Revelation 17:13) This prediction is certainly not referring to political unity. It refers to unity in purpose. The prophecy of Daniel 2 reveals that the nations of Europe would never again unite as a single political entity—"they shall not cleave one to another." While we can look for unanimity of purpose among the nations of Europe, particularly in their support for papal dominance, we can be just as certain that these nations will not politically unite again.

It is very likely that François Mitterand, in supporting the German proposal, was motivated by the fear of a united Germany.

France has suffered three German occupations in the last 120 years. The French people no doubt believe that in a united Europe they would have much more security against a revitalized Germany than they have experienced in the past; however, in this hope they are doomed to disappointment. While it is true that Mrs. Thatcher is a particularly strong opponent of the European political unity, she nevertheless correctly predicted that "the process of European union would founder as soon as member states faced the prospect of having to cede national sovereignty and accept collective decision making." (Singapore Straits Times, April 1990)

We must not overlook the fact that France is a Catholic nation and that Chancellor Kohl leads the Catholic political party of Germany. Make no mistake, the Vatican is carefully monitoring, if not actively instigating, the move for a united Europe. Pope John Paul II has called "an unprecedented Europe-wide meeting of bishops to discuss spreading the church’s message across the continent." (Ibid., April 23 1990)

Let us notice this fact in the light of the call from France and Germany a few days later for European unity. The interest of the Roman Catholic Church in European unity is as intense as it is self-serving.

The concept of a united Europe, one that recognizes its Christian roots, has been an important thread running through the pope’s speeches on a two-day visit to Czechoslovakia. . . . Europe has about 1,000 of the world’s 3,000 bishops. The synod apparently will formulate a strategy to meet the pope’s vision of a Europe united by its Christian roots. (Ibid.)

We may rest assured that what the pope means by Christian roots is Roman Catholic roots; thus Kohl and Mitterand in their letter to Prime Minister Haughey were either reflecting the pope’s wishes or they were using their good offices, at the request of the pope, to forward his desires.

For countries such as France and Germany, which are likely to dominate any united Europe, there would be political advantages. But what about the fate of the smaller countries? Already, it is reported that Mrs. Thatcher was not alone in her stand against political union.

Community leaders said other countries such as Denmark, Luxembourg, and Portugal also had reservations. (Ibid.)

It is understandable that smaller nations such as Denmark, Luxembourg, and Portugal would be very hesitant to join a united states of Europe. The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics has provided a contemporary example of the difficulty of ruling a nation of united states consisting of concentrations of diverse ethnic citizens. We have only to examine the situations in the Baltic states and the states of Armenia, Georgia, and Azerbaijan in order to realize that the fate of ethnic minorities within a larger union is not to be desired.

If the smaller countries of Europe were to lose their sovereignty, they would become mere puppets in the hands of the larger nations. This fact would be particularly true if all of Europe were united to include the U.S.S.R., Britain, France, and Germany.

Undoubtedly, calls for a united Europe will continue, but we have the sure Word of God that political union in Europe will not take place. No student of God’s Word could ever doubt this fact. There will be, as we have mentioned, a coming together of these nations in purpose and ideals that are particularly related to the religious issues and the dominance of the Vatican in these religious issues. But that unity will come about despite the fact that national sovereignties will be maintained. The European parliament will never become a sovereign parliament for a single nation—the united states of Europe—because God, in His infallible foreknowledge, has revealed that it will never happen.

We are living in the last days. Satan is diligent in his attempts to make of none effect the prophecies of God. He, too, is doomed to failure. We are near the end of this world’s history. Speaking of the division of Europe, God has revealed to us what will follow the period of the divided nations of Europe.

And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, that shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever. (Daniel 2:44)

There will be no united nation of Europe. Soon the kingdom of our Lord Jesus Christ will be established at his Second Coming. At that time, He will take the redeemed with Him to heaven. We can have great certainty concerning the definite failure for moves toward political union in Europe. No prophecy has ever failed to accurately reveal the future as clearly as if it were the past, because every word of God is sure. Christ’s Second Coming alone is our only hope for future unity.

 


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