Skip to main content

Be prepared .. authoritarianism

Read time: 6 minutes.
risk planning

How can we prepare for what is coming? We first have to know what is likely to happen, or at least a range of possibilities and then work out what, if anything we can do for each one. In business, it’s a Risk Register of likelihood & impact of each risk with mitigation actions. Everyone hates reviewing these as it's difficult to quantify risk probabilities and whether actions will meet the issue. And the more you think the more risks appear! Unless reined in it becomes unmanageable.

From a Christian perspective, we have a longer vision about eventual outcomes and assurance that God will be with us day-to-day, but He still expects us to be humble before him, and to seek his wisdom (‘his Opinion’ as RT Kendall would say) and to have the courage to act on it.

So where does that put us today in the UK? We all have different circumstances, responsibilities and opportunities so need to work out things for ourselves, with each other and with Him.

But overall what are the macro changes happening to us? What can we learn from recent history and our current trajectory?


The most widespread issue is the increase in authoritarianism in government and with it a possibly surprising decrease in wisdom and intellectual ability. Usually we more easily accept authority if it has proven to be efficacious, has good judgement – eg a winning team captain, or successful boss – but now we are being forced to accept authority that is shameless in failure.

This is actually linked to a rejection of God.

The fear of God is the beginning of wisdom Prov 9:10

If anyone lacks wisdom let them ask for it James 1:5

Solomon was blessed and became politically successful because he asked first for wisdom, but The fool says in his heart ”There is no God” Ps 14:1 or as GK Chesterton observed It’s the first effect of not believing in God that you lose your common sense.

So if we don’t seek God we will not flourish – and this is not just in ethics or metaphysical decisions – it is also in all practical things. The West has flourished in the past because it more closely followed this model.

I have filled him with the Spirit of God, with wisdom, with understanding, with knowledge and with all kinds of skills Ex 31:3

The ruling class have their Oxbridge degrees in PPE or whatever, well-organised but in pride do not see their limitations Claiming to be wise, they became fools, ... worshipped and served created things rather than the Creator  Rom 1:22,25 - pursuing material gain and invented coercive ideologies.

George Orwell said: “There are some ideas so absurd that only an intellectual could believe them.”

But “Come now, and let us reason together,” Says the Lord, “Though your sins are like scarlet…" Is 1:18  expresses the dignity given to man and the humility required for a healthy intellectual and practical life.

Some examples

We now see that during Covid decisions made that were very foolish - without considering all the options (no careful Risk assessment here other than some self-serving political arithmetic!). They were exacerbated by the suppression of debate – surely any sane government would seek as open a discussion as possible on solutions, rather than close its legislative chamber and deliberately attack anyone disagreeing with their policy, which they did not even believe in themselves. Crazy right?

A detailed and reasoned Think-tank report ‘The Net Zero Deception’ expresses this beautifully. A ‘coalition of academics, environmental advocacy groups, politicians and the courts’ has decided we have net-zero CO2 by a certain date. They have not done the simple maths on electrical needs (twice current) while reducing capacity (more renewable will not help as lacks reliability). Nuclear is ideologically derided. Battery capacity is owned by China - not a friend. Carbon Capture will not work efficiently. The ‘coalition’ has decided there will be a Green Industrial Revolution to solve all this but without a plan and meanwhile sabotaging our industrial capacity. As the authors say, it literally risks the destruction of our economy and civil order – ‘open surgery on our nation before we have acquired antiseptics.’ And that’s before challenging the very need.

Not idiots but fools

Both these issues are widely commented on – but no-one asks the question why. Why are the politicians, academics, and courts doing this – who are not idiots but are fools?

The growing coercive nature of rulers is an inevitable effect of the rejection of God, as power is held not in trust and service, but to be grasped. The Coronation service expressed wonderful Godly truths implanted by our Christian forebears as the chief means of security for the realm - but who present believed them?

Our rulers are not bothered by the destruction around them. Boris Johnson has earned £5 million since leaving office mostly for international speaking engagements. Others no-doubt expect the same sort of remuneration from those with the wealth and power to pay these fees.

Therefore, you kings, be wise;    
be warned, you rulers of the earth.    
Serve the Lord with fear    
and celebrate his rule with trembling. Ps 2:10-11


It’s tempting to trace this all back to control from the WEF or UN or Big Pharma or CCP - and there is good reason to be concerned by these well-organised and extravagantly financed bastions of anti-God – they certainly want to do the controlling and are a good way towards achieving it!  

It’s also said that it’s impossible to be a ‘Conspiracy Theorist’ anymore as most of the ‘conspiracies’ have been shown to be true: origins of Covid, dis-efficacy of vaccines, efficacy of cheap alternatives, climate non-emergency. And the truth had been known ahead of time by one or more of the above groups.

But whether coordinated, in competition or not, these groups are all driven by the same human desire for security – not in God – but in themselves, in rebellious independence to God and they will do whatever they can to get it.

We have seen this in the past in appalling wanton wars and oppression, but through the spread of God’s word and His kingdom, nations have been transformed.


There are many likely outcomes from this current downward path, seen historically in tyrannous regimes, but the main threats are:

- reduction of personal freedoms, whether of ‘conscience’ (faith) or practical choices

- theft of income, savings, property - and denial of the means to work for them

- dissolution of healthy family and community structures

- tokenisation of democracy – local and central

- no access to truth about current and historic affairs - instead official misinformation (lies)

- prohibitions on speech and actions

- loss of privacy 

What actions

Coming back to writing our Risk Register's mitigating actions - we often look for models of what we've done before that worked.

Carl Trueman suggests we're not back to the reformation but back in the second century – where the culture thinks bad things of us: they were a weirdly tight community of ‘brothers and sisters’ who ‘eat the body and drink the blood’ of the founder. 

There is a minuscule understanding of Christianity in the UK, maybe from a distant SRE lesson, probably vaguely associated with people in ornate outfits on State occasions and not much helped by ‘thought for the day’ or the usually liberal, dismissive or negative portrayals on TV. This is maybe not much more than the Romans would know of the supposed Jewish sect. But God did work through them to spread the Kingdom as they grew as communities and reflected better ways to live in society. When Christians challenge they are deemed to be part of the problem, so are ridiculed and suppressed (cf Nero).

However, the same dynamic is seen in many ages - the Puritans, Bunyan, suppressed in England but later flourishing.  Lowly-born Victorian missionaries ending up honoured by God before men.  The Beast is defeated by the Lamb.

There are also pointers in the experience of persecuted Christians today and those that survived Communist occupation in Eastern Europe.

Barnabus Aid

They recently celebrated their 30th anniversary and reported on what they have done:

- meeting material needs - builds faith and survival

- Christian education – strengthens faith and meets the need for new leaders (these are targeted and killed)

- develop local means of production

- build local storage of food, energy

- stay alert to changing circumstances – spinning like a top!

- awareness of conflict and loss

- move Christians to safe areas – North to South Sudan, Afghanistan to Brazil

The Benedict option

Rod Dreher describes the experience of a man in German-occupied Eastern Europe who could see the advance of the Soviet army and what the suppression of Christianity would mean. He started prayer groups that ended up being underground, but the churches survived. This is a situation where there is no effective outside help.

In the next episode, we'll unpack more details of what we should do.