Orthodox England

Excerpt from: Volume 10 Issue 1 Date 1st September 2006

The Epistle to the Europeans


O Foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ hath been evidently set forth, crucified among you? This only would I learn of you, Received ye the spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith? Are ye so foolish? Having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh?

Galatians 3, 1–3

Most of modern Europe is the creation of three Indo-European peoples, whose origins are on the plains of north-west India. In order of their settlement in Europe, these are:
The Latin peoples – the Italians (with the Sicilians, Sardinians and Corsicans and Italians in the south of Switzerland), the French (with some in the south of Belgium and the west of Switzerland), the Spaniards (with Catalans), the Portuguese and the Romanians;
The Germanic peoples – the Germans (with most Swiss, Luxemburgers and Austrians), the Dutch (with Flemish in the north of Belgium and Frisians), the English and the Scandinavians (Icelanders, Norwegians, Swedes and Danes);
The Slavic peoples – the Russians, Ukrainians (with Carpatho-Russians) and Belorussians, the Poles (with Lusatians), Slovaks and Czechs, the Bulgarians, Slovenes, Croats, Serbs (with Montenegrins) and Macedonians.
Of course, there are also other peoples in Europe. For example, there are more recent arrivals – immigrants, including Gypsies and Jews, but also more ancient arrivals, Finns, Estonians, Hungarians and Turks, who all belong to a Turkic race. From much more ancient times, there are the Phoenician Maltese, now heavily Italianised. There are also the Caucasian peoples, among whom the largest is the Georgians. Then there is the most ancient people of all – the mysterious Basques, who appear to be the original inhabitants of Europe, the only true Europeans, pushed by invaders into the Pyrenees.
However, there are smaller groups of Indo-European inhabitants in Europe, who do not belong directly to the three main peoples. There are the Baltic peoples, related to the Slavs – the Latvians and the Lithuanians or any of the ancient groups. There are peoples of the mountains, Albanians and Armenians; there are Greeks (with Cypriots), who crossed from Asia Minor and settled in Europe before the Latin peoples and gave Europe its name, which from the Assyrian ‘Ereb’, means ‘The West’. However, there is also another Indo-European people, the Celts. The Celts once dominated Europe from east to west, but were long ago pushed in their turn into the western corners of Europe by the Latin, Germanic and Slavic peoples.
Today, the Celts include those in the British Isles (Britain and British are Celtic words) – the Irish, Scots, Welsh and, in France, the Bretons. However, among the Celts there are smaller groups, the Cornish and Manx, and yet others, like the Galatians in north-west Spain, who also claim Celtic ancestry. In fact, one can trace the Celts all over Europe and beyond through their place-names – wherever, in fact, that we find names with the elements Cal, Cel, Gael, Gal, Gaul, Vla, Wal and Wel. Thus, we have Calais in France, Caledonia in Scotland, the word Celt, Donegal in Ireland, the words Gael and Gaelic, used in Ireland and Scotland, Galloway in Scotland, Galway in Ireland, Galicia in Spain, the Ukraine and Poland, Galati in Romania, Galatia, Galata and Gallipoli (the town of the Celts) in Asia Minor, Gallic and Gaul (used of French and France), Gallo (a dialect in France), Vlach, used in the Balkans, Wallachia in Romania, the name ‘Wales’, Cornwall (the Welsh living in the horn-shaped peninsula), Walloon (used in southern Belgium) and Welsh.
So widespread were the Celtic people, who once populated Europe, that they are mentioned in the title of one of the Epistles of the Apostle Paul. This is his Epistle to the Galatians, written in about ad50. Although written in Greek, this Epistle was addressed to those who lived in Galatia in Asia Minor, who were of Celtic or else of mixed Greek and Celtic descent. It could therefore be said that this Epistle is, in some sense, addressed by the Apostle of the Gentiles to the underlying population of Europe. Perhaps, by extension, and by the Providence of God, we can find in it a special relevance to today’s European population. Let us look more closely at its contents and see how the words of the Apostle of the Nations could be addressed to those Europeans who have forsaken the Europe of the Faith of the Apostles.

1. There is no Other Gospel than the Gospel of Christ

I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.

Galatians 1, 6–9

In forsaking the Faith, the Europe of Apostasy began to fill itself with innumerable ideologies, this ‘ism’ and that ‘ism’, first catholicism, legalism, monarchism and feudalism, then protestantism, humanism, capitalism and parliamentarianism, then conservatism, liberalism, idealism and socialism, and finally communism, fascism, egalitarianism and paganism, which have led to the deaths of hundreds of millions. Yet the Apostle of the Nations says clearly that there is only one Gospel, that of Christ and he casts anathema on all others.

2. Faith, Not The Law

Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified ... Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace. For we through the Spirit wait for the hope of righteousness by faith. For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision availeth anything, nor uncircumcision; but faith which worketh by love.

Galatians 2, 16 and 5, 4–6

In forsaking the Faith, the Europe of Apostasy believed that it could justify itself and all its actions and wars by its legalism, its laws, just as the Jews of old justified themselves by the works of their Law. Thus, once this Europe had rejected the Faith acting by Love, it began its history of legalism. However, without Faith, laws are mere fashions. This rejection of the grace of the New Testament, the self-judaisation of Europe, has been the falling back into the works of the Old Testament, the rejection of grace, and separation from Christ.

3. Not Us, But Christ in Us

I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain.

Galatians 2, 20–21

In forsaking the Faith, the Europe of Apostasy began worshipping itself through its humanism. However, in rejecting the existence of sin, Europe has mistaken human-beings for Christ, the Only Sinless One. We worship not man, as in European humanism, but the God-Man, in the Faith of Christ. We worship not sinfulness, but sinlessness.

4. Europe Seeks False Unity

For as many of you have been baptized into Christ, have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Jesus Christ.

Galatians 3, 27–28

In forsaking the Faith and adopting failed legalism and humanism, twice in a century the Europe of Apostasy fell victim to its tribal nationalisms and creating worldwide wars, Europe today seeks unity in suppressing its nations in a Union. However, such a manmade Union will no more bring unity than the nationalisms of before. There is only one true Unity, which is the Unity in Christ, the Unity of the Common Faith of the First Millennium. Unfortunately, for a thousand years, the Faith of the Galilean fishermen has been lost for Western Europe, buried beneath the lust for power and political machinations of Rome, and all its followers and all its dissidents. However, the Common Faith can be found again, if Western Europe so wills.

5. Europe Returns to Paganism

Howbeit then, when ye knew not God, ye did service unto them which by nature are no gods. But now, after that ye have known God, or rather are known of God, how turn ye again to the weak and beggarly elements, whereunto ye desire again to be in bondage? Ye observe days, and months, and times, and years. I am afraid of you, lest I have bestowed upon you labour in vain.

Galatians 4, 8–11

In forsaking the Faith, the Europe of Apostasy rejects Unity in Christ. In refusing to return to Unity, to the Common Faith of the First Millennium, Europe chooses paganism. Little wonder that the Apostle fears that he may have laboured in vain.

6. Europe Rejects Truth For Passing Fashions

Am I therefore become your enemy, because I tell you the truth?

Galatians 4, 16

In forsaking the Faith, the Europe of Apostasy forsakes the Truth. It replaces the Truth with passing fashions. Thus, at present, it prefers political correctness to the Truth and treats those who tell the Truth as its enemies.

7. True Freedom

Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage ... For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another.

Galatians 5, 1 and 5, 13

In forsaking the Faith, the Europe of Apostasy forsakes freedom from sin. Europe proclaims freedom, but this is not true freedom, it is slavery to the passions.

8. International Relations

For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another. For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this: Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself ... As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.

Galatians 5, 13–14 and 6, 10

In forsaking the Faith, the Europe of Apostasy no longer knows how to treat others and despises others, especially those who live according to Faith.

9. How To Live

This I say then, Walk in the spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh ... Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another ... Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ. For if a man think himself to be something, when he is nothing, he deceiveth himself. But let every man prove his own work, and then shall he have rejoicing in himself alone, and not in another. For every man shall bear his own burden.

Galatians 5, 16 and 5, 26 and 6, 2–5

In forsaking the Faith, the Europe of Apostasy neglects to live according to the Spirit, living irresponsibly.

10. Europe Cannot Escape

Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.

Galatians 6, 7–8

In forsaking the Faith, the Europe of Apostasy no longer believes that there is a Higher Justice. However, we are to take responsibility for our actions. God is not mocked.


For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth anything, nor uncircumcision, but a new creature.

Galatians 6, 15

Europe has forsaken the Faith, but there is no cause for despair. Repentance is still possible, it is still possible for Europe to leave its old irrelevant ‘isms’ behind it and become new. This is the only thing that counts. However, it remains to be seen whether the Europe of Apostasy will return to the Europe of Faith.

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(c) Orthodox England - Published within the English Deanery of the Church Outside Russia: with the blessing of the Very Reverend Mark, Archbishop of Great Britain and Ireland.