Northern Irish church displays massive pro-Brexit mural quoting Revelation

Does God have a view on Brexit?

Both sides of the EU referendum debate have courted support from the great and good. Vote Leave, apparently, might have the Queen on side. Remain has the scalp of President Obama.

But one mural in Northern Ireland claims the ultimate authority by quoting a Bible verse to support a pro-Brexit message.

The slogan was painted on the side of a house in the Tigers Bay area of Belfast, Northern IrelandFacebook / Frank Witte

A giant slogan "Vote Leave EU" has been daubed on a gable wall in Tigers Bay, Belfast, alongside a reference to Revelation 18:4.

The verse reads: "Then I heard another voice from heaven saying, 'Come out of her, my people, lest you take part in her sins, lest you share in her plagues'."

Prof Drew Gibson, from Union Theological College in Belfast, told the BBC: "This verse is about the oppression of the poor by the strong. It's about those who search for luxury and want to leave God out of the equation.

"It is interesting in the context of our coming election and the Brexit debate where everybody is saying it's all about the economy, it's all about the economy, it's all about the economy.

"This verse says 'no, it's not actually all about the economy'.

"There's morality at the heart of it, there's spirituality there as well."

Michael Kelly, editor of the Irish Catholic newspaper, said he did not think many would look up the reference.

He told the BBC: "I think trying to bring religion into it is probably quite bizarre because I really don't think that it's a debate that the Bible has anything much to say about.

"What the Bible has to say about it, how the European Union should be run, how our country should be run and that should be run along just lines and I think that can be done whether the United Kingdom stays within the European Union or not."

The most senior Catholic leader in the UK, Cardinal Vincent Nichols, told journalists he thought Brexit would cause "complex problems".

He said: "There is a long tradition in Christianity and Catholicism in particular of believing in holding things together. So the Catholic stance towards an effort such as the EU is largely supportive.

"If the vote was to leave Europe I think we would face more complex problems and greater difficulty in finding our role in response to it than we would by playing an active and vigorous part with partners within the EU."

Other Christian leaders in the UK have remained neutral and the Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby has said he will not comment.