Monday, June 20, 2016

What is the morality of remaining in the EU?

During my A-levels I had to write an essay on whether membership of the European union undermined Parliamentary sovereignty in the United Kingdom. It was clear to me that time that the answer to that question was an undeniable yes. Acceptance of EEC membership and the Treaty of Rome also meant accepting that all past, present and future European legislation would supersede anything passed by the UK Parliament. 

Thus a constitutional principle was sacrificed: that no one UK parliament can bind another. The fact that the executive arm of the EU is unelected removes democratic accountability. The European Courts also take precedence over UK Courts. We have given up ultimate moral control over our country, we may be able to pass laws and make decisions in courts but they can be appealed through the European Court of Justice and the European Court of Human Rights and overturned. A nation must be able to govern itself according to the law of God. The basis of the God-appointed role of civil government (Romans 13) is to promote good and restrain evil (in accordance with God's law). Yet our nation has said that not God's law but European law is supreme.

These are simple facts however anyone wishes to spin them. They can say that we have traded sovereignty for something else but we have certainly given it away. Only recently, however, I came to see that this is not merely a political point and a matter of civil liberties but a moral question.

Our relationship with Europe has no moral basis. It is based on an oath but an oath must be true, just and righteous (Jeremiah 4:2).It must be an oath that is true and must commit us only to things that are just and righteous. It is altogether wrong for individuals to make an oath that commits them to implicit, unquestioned and automatic obedience whether the matter is right or wrong. If we are giving our word to submit to any future European legislation then this must potentially include things that will be morally wrong - it is therefore swearing falsely. If we are swearing with a mental reservation and intention that we will not keep our word if it does in the future commit us to anything morally wrong - we are also swearing falsely.

It is only acceptable to make an oath concerning something that we are able to perform and we know to be morally right to perform. When Herod made an oath to give his step-daughter anything she wanted it was not a morally acceptable oath. He ought not to have kept it when it was clear that it committed him to that which was morally wrong but he certainly also ought never to have made the oath in the first place (Matthew 14:7). [I am indebted to an address "Should We Be A Member Of The European Union? - A Biblical Assessment" by Rev. David Silversides for crystallising some of these points].

We do not have a legal basis or guaranteed opt out for picking and choosing European law if it proves to be morally wrong in the future. The time has come to release ourselves legally from an oath that has no moral basis by voting to leave the EU. It is one of the many threats to the moral security of our nation. Release from this dangerous oath will not solve our moral problems, nor will it guarantee our moral security. But in a straight choice between whether our nation ought to be ensnared in a morally false oath or not, our moral duty is clear. Vote Leave.

Thursday, June 09, 2016

This island built by nature for herself against infection

The following is quoted from Adrian Hilton's book The Principality and Power of Europe
These are the words with which the book concludes.

The shift towards European Government has gone so far that failure to insist upon renegotiation or preparation to withdraw undermines the very principles that the Conservative Party exists to promote — the national interest and the self-governance of the British people. Just as Churchill called the nation to prayer on the eve of the Battle of Britain, the current threat from the Continent is no less worthy of constant prayer, and the call is just as urgent. It is a righteous government which will restore British sovereignty, pursue righteous laws and maintain the Constitution of liberty which has served Britain for centuries and by which the Gospel has been freely proclaimed. Britain can be restored to her sovereign greatness, and the Word of God clearly states that 'Righteousness exalteth a nation' (Proverbs 13:34). 

Britain has developed a remarkable political system and an enviable Constitution, and has the unique record of not being invaded by a foreign power for 1000 years. Its tried, tested and trusted institutions have provided stable and responsible government for centuries, reinforcing the view of this 'island built by nature for herself against infection and the hand of war.' Having many times been victorious against the overt hand of war, it is surely now time to guard against the subtleties of infection.

Wednesday, June 08, 2016

6 ways to know if you love yourself more than God

The following passage on self-denial is by Richard Baxter
You hear ministers tell you of the odiousness and danger and sad effects of sin; but of all the sins that you ever heard of, there is scarce any more odious and dangerous than selfishness, and yet I doubt there are many that never were much troubled at it, nor sensible of its malignity. My principal request therefore to you is, that as ever you would prove Christians indeed, and be saved from sin and the damnation which follows it, take heed of this deadly sin of selfishness, and be sure you are possessed with true self-denial; and if you have, see that you use and live upon it.

And for your help herein, I shall tell you how your self-denial must be tried. I shall only tell you in a few words, how the least measure of true self-denial may be known. And in one word that is thus: Wherever the interest of carnal self is stronger and more predominant habitually than the interest of God, of Christ, of everlasting life, there is no true self-denial or saving grace; but where God’s interest is strongest, there self-denial is sincere. If you further ask me how this may be known, briefly thus:

1. What is it that you live for? What is that good which your mind is principally set to obtain? And what is that end which you principally design and endeavor to obtain, and which you set your heart on, and lay out your hopes upon? Is it the pleasing and glorifying of God, and the everlasting fruition of Him? Or is it the pleasing of your fleshly mind in the fruition of any inferior thing? Know this, and you may know whether self or God have the greatest interest in you. For that is your God which you love most, and please best, and would do most for.

2. Which do you set most by, the means of your salvation and of the glory of God, or the means of providing for self and flesh? Do you set more by Christ and holiness, which are the way to God; or by riches, honor, and pleasures, which gratify the flesh? Know this, and you may know whether you have true self-denial.

3. If you are truly self-denying, you are ordinarily ruled by God, and His Word and Spirit, and not by the carnal self. Which is the rule and master of your lives? Whose word and will is it ordinarily that prevails? When God draws, and self draws, which do you follow in the tenor of your life? Know this, and you may know whether you have true self-denial.

4. If you have true self-denial, the drift of your lives is carried on in a successful opposition to your carnal self, so that you not only refuse to be ruled by it, and love it as your god, but you fight against it, and tread it down as your enemy. So that you go armed against self in the course of your lives, and are striving against self in every duty; and as others think, it then goes best with them, when self is highest and pleased best; so you will know that then it goes best with you, when self is lowest, and most effectually subdued.

5. If you have true self-denial, there is nothing in this world so dear to you, but on deliberation you would leave it for God. He that has anything which he loves so well that he cannot spare it for God, is a selfish and unsanctified wretch. And therefore God has still put men to it, in the trial of their sincerity, to part with that which was dearest to the flesh. Abraham must be tried by parting with his only son. And Christ makes it His standing rule, “He who forsakes not all that he has, cannot be my disciple” (Luke 14:33).

Yet it is true that flesh and blood may make much resistance in a gracious heart; and many a striving thought there may be, before with Abraham we part with a son, or before we can part with wealth or life; but yet on deliberation, self-denial will prevail, and there is nothing so dear to a gracious soul, which he cannot spare at the will of God, and the hope of everlasting life. If with Peter we would flinch in a temptation–we should return with Peter in weeping bitterly, and give Christ those lives that in a temptation we denied Him.

6. In a word, true self-denial is procured by the knowledge and love of God, advancing Him in the soul–to debasing of self. The illuminated soul is so much taken with the glory and goodness of the Lord, that it carries him out of himself to God, and as it were estranges him from himself, that he may have communion with God; and this makes him vile in his own eyes, and to abhor himself in dust and ashes; he is lost in himself, and seeking God, he finds himself again in God. It is not a stoical resolution, but the love of God and the hopes of glory, that make him throw away the world, and look contemptuously on all below, so far as they are mere provision for flesh.

Search now, and try your hearts by these evidences, whether you are possessed of this necessary grace of self-denial. O make not light of the matter! For I must tell you that self is the most treacherous enemy, and the most insinuating deceiver in the world. It will be within you when you are not aware of it and will conquer you when you perceive not yourselves much troubled with it; and of all other vices is both the hardest to find out and the hardest to cure. Be sure therefore in the first place, that you have self-denial; and then be sure you use it and live in the practice of it.

Tuesday, June 07, 2016

The Goal of a United States of Europe

The following is quoted from Adrian Hilton's book The Principality and Power of Europe
It refers to the overweening claims of the EU and the imperative for a federal Europe.

It is noteworthy that politicians and journalists always use the term 'Europe' when they mean the EU. Europe is changing its meaning to include EU members only, producing such illogical phrases as 'European trade with Eastern Europe'. Europe is a continent of over 50 nations ... but anything that disagrees with EU policy, or is not intrinsic to it, becomes un-European. Romano Prodi overtly aims for a Leninist 'new kind of global governance', asserting that 'Brussels is all of us.' The vision is that this EU will ultimately speak with one voice - one representative - in international financial institutions or United Nations agencies, or as a previous advocate of European integration put it: 'Ein Volk, ein Reich, ein Fuehrer'...There is no doubt that the vision of a united Europe has inspired and continues to inspire politicians, Popes, and peacemakers of all backgrounds and persuasions. Since a mere free-trade area has failed to inspire anyone, the drive is once again towards a community of nations which will win the hearts and minds of the people, with talk of increased prosperity, dynamic success, secure peace and greater social justice.

Monday, June 06, 2016

Building the EU on the shifting sands of deceit

The following is quoted from Adrian Hilton's book The Principality and Power of Europe
It illustrates the key question at stake in the forthcoming referendum. We have sacrificed sovereignty, freedom and real democracy by entering the EEC/EU.

The assurance given to both the British people and to Parliament in 1973 by the then prime minister, Edward Heath, was that there was 'no question of any erosion of essential national sovereignty.' In other words, Britain was to be part of a community of sovereign nations who wished to trade with each other. Over and over again, that was the message that was hammered home to the electorate. Heath further gave the assurance: 'There are some in this country who fear that in going into Europe, we shall in some way sacrifice independence and sovereignty... These fears, I need hardly say, are completely unjustified...' The truth is that much more was surrendered than the electorate was led to believe. The European Court of Justice states: 'Every national court must apply Community law in
its entirety and must accordingly set aside any provision of national law which may conflict with it, whether prior to or subsequent to the Community rule.'

 It is now generally accepted by British judges that European law takes precedence over Acts of Parliament. Parliament has, therefore, surrendered its sovereignty. Where there is any disagreement about Britain's actions, it is the European Court of Justice that decides what is right. The former Master of the Rolls, Lord Denning, stated' No longer is European law an incoming tide flowing up the estuaries of England. It is now like a tidal wave bringing down our sea walls and flowing inland over our fields and houses, to the dismay of us all.'

The Lord Chancellor wrote to Heath on 14th December 1960 in response to Heath's enquiry into the constitutional implications of becoming a signatory to the Treaty of Rome. He stated: 'To satisfy the requirements of the treaty, Parliament could enact legislation which would give automatic force of law to any existing or future regulations made by...the Community. This would go far beyond the most extensive delegation of powers, even in wartime, that we have ever experienced... It is clear...that the (European) Council of Ministers could eventually...make regulations that would be binding on us even against our wishes... It is the first step on the road that the fully federal state.' As the most senior legal officer in the land, he went on to warn: 'I must emphasise that in my view the surrenders of sovereignty involved are serious ones...these objections ought to be brought out into the open...' To have been warned of this, and then to continue with the assertion that there would be no loss of sovereignty, is blatant proof of Heath's duplicity.

One of the founding fathers of the EU, Jean Monnet, also a devout Roman Catholic, totally rejected the idea that Europe should consist of sovereign nations. He believed in the Catholic vision that Europe should become a federal superstate, into which all ancient nations would be fused. 'Fused' is the word he used in a communication dated 30th April 1952, and is wholly consistent with the language of the Maastricht Treaty.

Friday, June 03, 2016

Brexit and it's spiritual dimension

...we are sure that every faithful Protestant who has a desire for the advancement of Christ's cause, and for the spiritual and social welfare of our fellow countrymen, would desire to see Britain free from the limitations on our national sovereignty imposed by the Treaty of Rome – the founding document of the EU – along with the subsequent plethora of treaties and much unnecessary European legislation. Furthermore, we believe, as a matter of biblical principle, that Protestant nations ought not to enter into political union with Romanist nations (Jos 23:3-10)


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