Moving With The Holy Spirit

December 26, 2009

December 5, 2009, HQ Church, Seoul Korea

    See, when we have people who are excited to contribute, excited to believe and love True Parents, excited to testify that Jesus’ mission is being fulfilled, excited that we live in the most blessed age in history, that’s when the Holy Spirit descends! Not when we have the most advanced content!

Welcoming Remarks:

Yeon Ah Nim

Good afternoon, brothers and sisters! [Good afternoon].  It is great to see you all.  Welcome to the HQ of the Unification Church.  This morning before service, we went to the church offering ceremony at Gangnam, and we are very happy and proud that the Korean church is facing, once again, the society for Heavenly Father and True Parents with confidence.  Brothers and sisters, this week we sincerely hope and pray that your day, your week, and your lives are filled with Heavenly Father’s and True Parents’ blessings. Aju, Aju!

 Hyung Jin Nim

Good afternoon, brothers and sisters.  Let’s manifest the Principle first: give and receive action, four-position foundation, “May I inherit the true love of God.” Aju.

Today’s Cheon Seong Gyeong, page 1007, True Father is speaking:

“When you place the picture of True Parents in your room and hang up the Unification Church flag, you come under God’s dominion.  I am trying to have you belong to God’s dominion.”

Brothers and sisters, when we know that we move in the spirit we don’t really move in the earthly realm, and we have powers around us.  Then we understand that as people of faith, people who believe in True Parents, people who believe and have faith in our community, that when we hold up our banner with pride then there is a power there.  Of course it does not mean that we won’t be criticized. It does not mean that everybody will be fine with it, but it means that there is a power there.

When we stand up for our faith, when we know that it is our right to believe in our faith in any democratic society, then we know that we are fighting for this faith, because many people around the world are being persecuted because of it, being stripped of their human rights because of it. We are standing up and declaring ourselves, with honesty and truth. No hiding, no more shyness.  Being bold about who we are, that is what Father is talking about.  When we do that, it requires a boldness that goes beyond what other people think of me, boldness that taps into something that is deep inside every one of us. We have to tap into that if we want to reach into God’s dominion.

Brothers and sisters, it is our hope that we can live with that kind of heart, not only that kind of heart, but that kind of life. We really can become beacons. We can hold up our banner with pride.  Be proud of ourselves as Unificationists; be proud of what we believe and the ideas that we hold.  When we do that, then society begins to wonder, society begins to look, society begins to see whether or not we are true about what we believe.  If we are able to do that, if we are able to true about our faith, then just as the scripture says, we will be able to move these mountains that seem unsurpassable.  Brothers and sisters, in this service we hope that you inherit this kind of love for True Parents and God.  Let us rise and let’s do Family Pledge #6 today.

 Main Sermon by Hyung Jin Nim:

 Today we heard a very special performance of “Country Roads”, a live performance; I think a first time for an international performance.  Let’s give it up again for the Two Rivers Choir – live – “Country Roads!”  They actually performed that for True Parents just a couple of days ago, and True Parents really enjoyed it; they were inspired by that.

 I’d like to talk to you today about moving with the Holy Spirit.  Let’s look at some of the World’s Scriptures first, before we enter this.  This is John 6:38, Christianity.  Let’s read this together:  “For I have come down from Heaven, not to do my will, but to do the will of Him who sent me.” Aju.

 

Let’s look at Confucianism today.  This is the I Ching, the 50th verse. Let’s read this together:  “A sacrificial vessel: The superior man, taking his stance as righteousness requires, adheres firmly to Heaven’s decree.” Aju.

 

Let’s look at Islam today.  This is the Koran, 2nd Sutra, 112th verse. Let’s read together: 

“Whoever submits his will to God, while doing good, his wage is with his Lord, and no fear shall be upon them, neither shall they sorrow.” Aju.

 

Now let’s look at True Parent’s words today. This is from the compilation of speeches, 36th volume.  Let’s read together:  “I am not the origin. My origin must be the Being who transcends me, and my purpose must be transcendent of myself.  If it were not the case, how could I stand in a position to confront this world?” Aju.

 

Today, our core scripture that we are going to focus on is Matthew 3:11.  Let’s read this together: “I baptize you with water for repentance.  But after me will come one who is more powerful than I, whose sandals I am not fit to carry.  He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire.” Aju.

 Who is speaking?  This is John the Baptist speaking.  So here John the Baptist is speaking about Jesus.  We have to remember that at that time John was actually viewed and seen as a messianic figure by many people.  See, he was a holy man; and he fit the usual expectations of what a holy man would be.  He was very spiritual.  He stayed away from society.  He stayed away from the sinners, so to speak.  He stayed away from challenging society.  He was ascetic.  He lived away from the world.

 You see, Jesus was harder to follow because he directly confronted hypocrisy.  He entered into cities to witness about God, and the Kingdom.  He directly confronted, challenged and argued, and declared that he was the Son of God— very, very different from expectations of the people.

Jesus ate with prostitutes and tax collectors.  He went to all, what the society would call sinners.  He went to baptize them, to make them repent and be reborn in the Holy Spirit.

 See, Jesus moved with the spirit of the Lord; and that spirit would come, and it would heal, and it would warn, and it also would fill with joy, and it would perform miracles for the people and followers of Christ.  In the early days of the Unification Church  also, there were incredible miracles, there were incredible healings; there were dreams and revelations that people had.  People actually saw True Parents before they met them. They saw them in the dream; these kinds of incredible revelations.

 There was baptism of the holy fire in the early days, of the holy spirit, where people felt like electricity flowing through them; like this wave of energy flowing through them, as they were singing or praying, while being in the presence of True Parents.  This is what scholars would call ergotrophic spiritual experiences.  When people were witnessing, they could see lights, see visions—almost with their spiritual eyes, almost like with a sixth sense.  They could see lights above people that they were witnessing to, people that would eventually become members; just like John saw the dove of light above the Christ.

Now, Unification Church as well, like Jesus, is once again coming into its ministry.  It’s reclaiming the early faith that we had, that maybe became weakened as we went along, when we were persecuted and attacked; but that we still have in the bottom of our hearts.

See, we have brothers and sisters now—and this is very exciting now in Korea at the Headquarters church with Mrs. Erikawa’s leadership—who are out on the streets every day, every single day.  This is not witnessing once a week; this is everyday witnessing. They are out on the streets. They are declaring the Lord. They are witnessing once again in faith. They all have jobs. They all do the 9 to 5, but they still witness. They have a faith that’s alive. They’re going out, after lunch, after dinner; two times per day.

See, for decades, in the Korean church, and also in other churches around the world, we have forgotten this type of faith: a faith that’s like Jesus, that doesn’t hide away from society, but that goes into it.  It goes in and boldly declares, and does not hide.  It shares with confidence the truth of God, the heart of True Parents, the heart of God’s son.

 See, these Jesus-like members, these Christ-like members—they’re leading a new generation of Unificationists, who are rediscovering the faith that they never really felt in their lives; who are not scared of what society thinks, but have a faith that is alive and courageous. You see, these people live with God every day. They see that God is alive, that He answers prayers; that He performs miracles; that He sends prepared people their way. They’re experiencing this every day. It’s absolutely incredible.

Giving this kind of devotion with the brothers and sisters now, going out into the streets, our ministerial team did something quite wonderful and quite moving to the heart.  Our ministers here and at the Headquarters church, just finished a 21-day condition of 1,000 bows per day!  Every day!  Pastor Brazil did it too!  He did 21,000 bows over the last 21 days.  Let’s give it up for these incredible ministers.

That’s the kind of passion they’re showing; they’re showing a passion.  It’s not like in the West, where many people think of bows like this, “Oh, you’re groveling at God’s feet.”  No, no, no.  When you bow, you’re letting go of yourself; you’re connecting to a higher power, to a higher purpose, and a higher mission.  And, this is what our ministers are doing—they’ve stepped up. They stepped up and showed their faith; they showed their passion.  “We’re going to fight with you, Members,” they are saying.  They’re not just saying, “We’re going to send you out on the frontline, and have you guys witness,” but they say, “We’re going to do it with you, we’re going to show you our passion.”  And they did that.  I’m so proud of them.

One of our head ministers here, who is the regional director minister, led a minister team in this devotion.  He’s 63 years of age—63 years of age!  He has a full day’s workload, but they were up at 2:30 in the morning, training every day; training 1,000 bow training every day. He’s 63; his ankles were getting beat up, his knees were getting beat up, his wrists were getting beat up.  He was going to the hospital because he was in pain.  But you know what he said? He kept praying through the pain.  But he was also inspired by Pastor Brazil.  He said, “Hey, if that guy can do it, I can do it too.  He’s heavier than me.  I can do it.”

You see, God protected them in the 21 days.  We saw that. They’re tired; they’re working all day, plus doing the devotion. They’re training like monks; they’re training hard. And, everyday, they’re out there working, and doing witnessing, and educating in DP lectures, etc., doing it with this intense practice as well.

And so we’re worried. We pray for them every day, to make sure they don’t get into a car accident while they’re driving.  They’re going on two or three hours of sleep every day; we’re praying for them.  But, God answered our prayers.  He did protect them, no accidents, no car accidents.  Let’s give it up once again for God and His protection. (Applause)

You see, once again we’re rising.  We’re standing up again as the Unification Church.  We’ve been beaten down, we’ve been attacked, and we were stripped of our human rights like in Japan where we’ve been illegally kidnapped, and our brothers and sisters have been abused, and even raped, in that democratic state.  And, in that condition, we’re not hiding our faith.  We’re saying, “No! We have a right to believe what we believe, and you cannot persecute us based on our religion and on our faith.  This is our democratic right.  This is what we’re standing up for.” We’re testifying, we’re witnessing again, and this is real faith.

Let’s take a look at Luke Chapter 7, verse 1: 11 through 13. Let’s take a look at this together: “Which of your fathers, if your son asks for a fish, will give him a snake, instead?  Or, if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion.  If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in Heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him?”

You see, we give devotions, and we make conditions, and we pray with a sincere heart. These are the things our church has lost.  This is the faith life that our church has lost.  And, this is why we have stagnated, and have not been able to grow and be inspired.

When we do that, we are emptying ourselves; we’re connecting to a higher power.  We’re acknowledging, ”I can’t do everything on my own effort, or my own talent, but I need to tap into something greater, that will connect me to greater talent, connect me to greater potential.”  When we do that, then miracles begin to move, and that devotional practice is at the ministerial core of how we train here and how we do ministry.

See, when we empty ourselves, when we release ourselves of the egos and the self-centered pride,  when we bow, when we offer devotion to True Parents, when we offer devotion to God, when we thank them, then God comes, the Holy Spirit comes.  It fills us up, fills us up with pride about being a Unificationist.  It gives us something to work for, it gives us something to sweat about, it gives us something to remember that we are fighting for a greater cause,  (to remember) that people before us, and still to this day, are being persecuted because of such a faith.

And when we stand before the world, and say, ”No, you cannot strip this away from me, cannot take this away from me.  This is mine, and it is mine, because God has given it to me,”  that’s when we’re fighting for our faith.

One of our couples – so incredibly inspiring – is witnessing every single day.  I heard about it from one of our leaders, Mrs. Erikawa.  She told me about the fact that finally in the Korean church, once again, we have people on the streets.  They’re witnessing once again.  They’re reclaiming their faith.  They’re going out and talking to people about the Returning Lord.  They’re talking in faith terms, theological terms, not just as patriots or great men, but in theological terms and religious terms.

And Mrs Erikawa would give me this incredible news.  There’s this amazing couple who are out on the streets witnessing every day.  When we were out with the brothers and sisters the other day, on Friday, running around on the streets and witnessing, and meeting people, and telling them who True Parents were, etc.. but, we were with a different team.  We had yet to see this team (in which that amazing couple is in).

But this sister is in an incredible situation!  She and her husband are quite famous in the Unification Church here in Korea, not because of some incredible thing that happened to their life, but actually an incredible tragedy  happened in their life.

Just a few years ago in a tragic house fire accident, they lost every single one of their children – that’s four children.  All of them were lost in that fire!  And you think about the incredible heart pain that those two parents encountered and had to deal with, how much pain they would have, even in their faith, ”God, how could you do this to me?  I thought you loved me, why would you do this to me?”

Think about the incredible type of pain that kind of accident would give you!  We heard about this family many years ago when I was in Korea – this was many years, I think five to six years ago.  We offered condolences to them. But I remember, and  Hyo Jin hyung was around in Korea too, and he actually visited them. He went and visited that family after it happened.  He offered a prayer for them, and then he encouraged them.

 One of the really incredible things that I found out  is from Mrs Erikawa. She told me she is on the streets with the members every day.  And, she told me that it was actually this family, this couple – he is a Korean husband and the sister is a Japanese wife – who is out on the streets, doing this, even after that tragedy.

When we heard that, everybody was crying, everybody was crying in that room.  We were all moved in our hearts.  We realized that this kind of heroic faith still exists in our church.  It’s not dead.  It’s not squashed out.  It’s not beaten up.  It is still alive.  They moved through that heart, wrenching (overcoming) tragedy, and they have rededicated their lives to God, and God is using them in that incredible way.

 They are like holy lights and chasing away shadows, bringing God’s parental love and His inheritance to the world.  If you think about their situation, they could have fallen into complete immobility.  They lost four of their children. Every single child, every single child that they had, they lost in a fire.  They could have totally fallen into despair.  This is not just a story, this is a real person, but they are heroes because they realized that even inspite of that tragedy, even though they couldn’t understand it and explain it and see all the connections, etc., (inspite of that they realized) that God still had a plan for their life, that He still had a mission for them to do.  And God is using them to save souls.  He’s going out there.  He’s using them to change people’s lives.  I want to give it up for that couple, that incredible Blessed Family!  Let’s give it up for that real faith! (Applause)

And, this is what they say.  This is their attitude.  They say, “We are on the streets in complete gratitude.  We’re so grateful we can be running around and declaring True Parents.”  This is a person who’s lost all of their children!  “We are happy we can declare for God.”  They’re running around – they told us – with their spiritual eyes open.  They’re trying to see people, the people that they’re witnessing to, the people that they’re meeting and testifying to, as souls.  They’re trying to see their spirit realm, spirit body, spirit self that needs to inherit that great parental heart, that needs to find that great eternal love.  They’re seeing them with their spiritual eyes.  They say, “We have lost all our children physically, we’ve lost them; they are in the spiritual world now. But we’re moving with them, and we’re moving with them to see that other people are also our children when we go with the heart of the parent to save them.”  This is an incredible faith, and just an incredible family!

Let’s look at John 14:26 today.  This is one of the very important quotes.  Let’s look at this together:

“But the counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things, and will remind you of everything I have said to you.”

You see, the Holy Spirit comes to us as a counselor, that’s not only something that counsels us and makes us feel good.  It guides, it reminds us of what we’re to do and not to do.  It tells us, works with our conscience, makes us better people, shapes us into the way the Lord wants to shape us- as this scripture says- gives us a powerful energy and electricity, and passion for our faith life.

And, when we let go of ourselves, and what other people think of us, or doing all of those activities we do in our mind, and we just let go, and give devotion, when we share our faith with boldness, that’s when our faith comes into fruition, that’s when our faith becomes true.  See, in the end, people are moved, not by, of course by content, but really people are moved by real faith.  They’re moved by people.  People are moved by people.

We had Goto-san here – you all know Goto-san, an incredible man, heroic faith, survived 12 years and five months of illegal kidnapping and captivity, but still was victorious – he came to the church, he spoke to our brothers and sisters.  We had VIPs in the crowd, who listened, who came to the church for the first time.  They heard this kind of incredible story, his story.  And, so one of our ministers was very worried, actually.  He was worried that maybe it was too much, too fast.  Maybe they heard too much and too fast from that person?  So he asked.  He actually asked that guest, “How did you think about that man, Goto-san?”

That guest told us how she just wept her heart out, how she just cried and cried.  She was so moved.  She didn’t know about everything that he was talking about, but she could feel his passion and his heart.  She could feel that he was alive in faith and in love, she could feel the flow of God’s movement.

And so, we can see that truth is powerful, when it is portrayed (expressed) in the lives of the followers.  This is how powerful true faith really is.  You see, when we speak about our faith, just like Goto-san, we live and testify about the Lord, we show faithfulness, we show filial piety in our life.  We begin to change minds by our action, by the way we live, by what we think about.

I remember when we first got here to Korea, there were many people telling me, “We can’t develop the church.  We haven’t developed for thirty years.  We haven’t grown one bit, for thirty years, because we don’t have great content, because we don’t have the most up to date content, we don’t have something that is more exciting, and this is kind of out of date.  If we only had this kind of content, and adjust this problem, then we would completely advance and we would create great results.”

But, I realized, this was absolutely false!  Our problem in witnessing was not the content.  It is not the lack of content.  The problem of our witnessing is the lack of the most basic ingredient of an inspiring disciple of any religion, and that is a powerful faith.  That is the key ingredient for  successful witnessing.

Our Japanese church has witnessed to – just in the last month – over 3,600 people! Why and how could they do that?  Do they have some special system?  Do they have some special curriculum and content?  Do they have a special way to communicate, the latest tips on communication excellence, and all those kinds of things?  They have none of that!  They don’t have special powers.  They’re people just like you and me.  What do they have?  They have thousands and thousands of Goto-sans!  That’s what they have.  They have incredible people of faith, that when you see them, you are inspired.  How could you live like that?  It’s incredible.  It’s like meeting a saint, when you meet those Japanese members. They just work day and night for the whole world providence, and they do that, and they’ve served all of our churches around the world for thirty years.

When we have thousands of brothers and sisters in any nation – I don’t care what nation it is – with the faith and sacrificial filial piety like Goto-san’s, just like that, we will have no problem witnessing, because of the life that we live, how we testify, what we do. When people see that, they are moved, just like those VIPs who were moved when he spoke here, and who said they wanted to join our church.

This is the powerful thing about witnessing.  It’s not about the content.  It is more about the person giving the content.  People are moved by people, just like a person can have an exciting biology teacher, but initially wanted to study business, but because of that teacher, becomes a scientist. Just like that, people get inspired by people.

And in the same way, when we testify to True Parents, they want to see if we are inspiring people. Do we just talk about our faith, or do we live it?  Do we go up and beyond, just like those Goto-sans and those Japanese members who have been doing that for the last thirty years?  See, when we have people who are excited to contribute, excited to believe and love True Parents, excited to testify that Jesus’ mission is being fulfilled, excited that we live in the most blessed age in history, that’s when the Holy Spirit descends! Not when we have the most advanced content!

It descends when we have real faith, when we have real passion and love for God and True Parents.  That’s when it comes.  That’s when miracles come, that’s when healing comes, that’s when all that kind of spiritual blessings come, the revelations, the dreams, etc.  Let’s give it up one time for our God and True Parents! (Applause)

And what is so exciting is that we are finally seeing this happening in Korea.  Finally, the Korean members are remembering the faith, the early faith that inspired them to move this whole nation.  We are seeing them fill themselves up with this kind of power, this kind of confidence, the joy and the excitement of testifying, the joy and the excitement of meeting new people and changing their lives and their destinies for the sake of God.  It is incredible to experience!

Let’s look at the final quotation from True Parents.  This is from the collection of words, volume 14.  Let’s read this together:

“An offering should not have any concept of possession.  A person, who would be an offering, should sacrifice for his people.  He should move forward for the purpose of the whole, not for his own purpose.  As an offering, you should set a public goal, and exert yourself for that.  As an offering, you should become a foundation, like good soil, upon which God can destroy evil, and establish the way of goodness.” Aju!

 Altar Call Prayer:

We want to pray with one heart, one spirit as one family.

Let us listen to the song of the seven deaths and resurrections of our True Parents. Let’s listen to the power of inheriting the true love of God, understanding what true love is.  It is the parental heart—a parental heart that for the sake of the children will die and die again. It is for the sake of the children to see a greater day, to be free one day and have eternal life.  That is the heart of True Love; that is the heart of God; that is the heart of True Parents.

Heavenly Father, we thank You so much for this day that You have anointed us. We want to remember that You move our hearts and minds, not by our intellect, but You move us with Your spirit.  Father, we want to be open to You; we want to know that You are alive and although we cannot see You and feel You, we can be in touch with You all the time.  We want to have faith that You have a plan for guiding us; that You have a purpose and a destiny that You have endowed every soul with.

Father, we pray that that mission may not be for ourselves, but that we can live with a true parental heart. Our True Parents were victorious, walking the path of death and torture, prison, mocking and chastising, so that one day their descendants and children may be free.

That kind of sacrificial heart is the true heart of a parent.  Any persons in this world who truly can move hearts, who can move nations, who can move organizations must understand that sacrificial heart.  We pray that anyone who is trying to become a leader in any work that they do, in any career, in any path, understands that leadership with success only comes with sacrifice, that it comes with a passion for the whole to succeed, to let go of oneself, to let go of one’s personal preferences for the sake of the organization and for the sake of the movement and for the sake of the school, for the sake of whatever institution.  Father, I pray that You will give us that kind of heart.  Father, we know that when we inherit that, we will reclaim our faith, be excited who we are, no longer hide in our shell but come to have pride and confidence in who we are, believe in what we say and testify that the returning Lord is here.

Father, when we go out to the streets and once again challenge ourselves and touch another person’s life, You are changing them. Now we can bow before You, and know that it is You that is doing it.  Father, we want to give You glory today, we want to empty ourselves of ourselves.  We still want to have confidence in what potential You have given to us. But Father let us realize that that potential only comes about when we can connect to Your greater vision and connect to Your greater network of divine power.

We thank You so much, Father.  Be with each and every one of us today.  Let us stand up for our faith in this crucial time. Let us not be shaken by what other people say, or by other people who try to chastise and attack us, but let us stay firm on the rock of faith, the rock of believing in True Parents, inheriting that True Love, and living to become a True Parent ourselves.

Father, we thank You so much.  We want to offer You a new confidence and faith.  We pray that You may bless every single member that is out today on the street in the cold talking about You; witnessing and testifying to our True Parents as the returning Lord.  We want to pray for them, to bless them and to let them teach us what faith is about, and let us follow in their footsteps with courage.  We thank You so much.  We offer all these things with gratitude in our own name as central Blessed Families in True Parents’ Name, we pray, Aju!

 

Read the rest of this entry »

Advertisements

Rev. Hyung Jin Nim's Interesting Story

December 26, 2009

I heard a story about Arthur and Mary. They were going to get married so they went to meet Arthur’s parents.

After dinner, they were having a wonderful time. There were some interesting situations that occurred during dinner.

On the drive back, Mary says to Arthur, “Arthur, I never told you this but I am an atheist and I never believed in  hell. But you know what, honey, after meeting your mum I think I believe in it now.  We’re not getting married.” That’s what she said!

Oh my God, that’s a little scary! We love our mothers-in-law, come on!

Sermon: Desiring the Promise / June 20th, 2009

Read the rest of this entry »


Rev. Hyung Jin Nim's Prayer

December 26, 2009

Heavenly Father, thank You so much for the blessing You have given us today.  We thank You because we know You are our parent.  Your only wish for us is that we can truly be all that we can be.  Dear God, You have given us so much incredible potential.  And You also have given us the desire in our hearts to share that potential with others.  As we continue to learn, let us today understand the difference between false desire and good desire.  Father, let us not cast away ALL desire, but let us understand that desire which brings You joy, our True Parents joy, and our community joy.  For that type of desire is honorable, righteous and beautiful.  Father, we pray that we will be confident to have that righteous desire and become saviors to this world, like our True Parents have taught us.  And to be little messiahs ourselves, that go forth and wish and yearn to help and free others from suffering.  Father, we pray that in our lives we can find this purpose, and as we center ourselves on this purpose, we will achieve great success and victory, all to be returned to You for Your glory.
 
Father, thank you that You have given us this time to reflect and to remember that it is alright to want to have You shine in this world.  We can desire the truth that You have given us.  We can allow the truth of our True Parents and the Divine Principle to shine into this world, to restore marriages, families, and nations.  Father, we believe that this will become a reality.
 
To do this, we want to step out of our past, meeting those new horizons, with hope, expectancy, and a bright heart of love that will conquer all darkness.  Thank you so much.  We pray this together as one central blessed family.  Aju.

Sermon: Desiring the Promise / June 20th, 2009

Read the rest of this entry »


The Mission of Jesus Christ and the Reverend Sun Myung Moon

December 22, 2009

December 12, 2009, HQ Church, Seoul Korea

   I never really understood True Parents until I started studying about Jesus. Even the way Jesus acted, I realized, “My God! True Father acts just like Jesus!”  Jesus was not the nicest man on earth – he was very radical in what he said, very strong. If you read the Bible, you can see how strongly he speaks, how he challenges the world.

Welcoming Remarks
 
Yeon Ah Nim:

Good afternoon, brothers and sisters! It is great to see you all. Welcome to the Headquarters of the Unification Church. As many of you know, there are 524 volumes of True Father’s teaching. Recently I heard that True Father started to read them through from Volume One during Hoon Dok Hae, so we are sending great applause for our True Father’s unending love for God. I really hope that you have a blessed week with Heavenly Father’s love and True Father’s true teaching. Aju!
 
Hyung Jin Nim:

Good afternoon, brothers and sisters! You know Christmas is coming very soon, so today it is all about Jesus. Today I am going to talk a lot about Jesus. Even for me as a second generation, while growing up I didn’t really understand Jesus well. Actually, we didn’t learn Christian theology in the church; we only heard Divine Principle. It was not until I studied Christian theology in the school of theology at Harvard that I truly came to realize the value of the Divine Principle – how powerful it is for someone who comes from the Christian tradition, who already has that knowledge of Christian theology. How powerful it is, how it answers fundamental questions that have wrecked the minds of many theologians and Christian elect for two thousand years! We will get to that a little later today.
 
Let us now manifest the Principle: Give and Receive Action, Four Position Foundation.   May I inherit the True Love of God! Aju!
 
Today our reading is from Cheon Seong Gyeong, page 196. This is about the Messiah:
 
The Messiah is the embodiment of the purpose of faith and the embodiment of the purpose of hope. He is the embodiment in whom the purpose of faith and hope are realized. When this purpose is realized through the Messiah, what is the only thing that will remain? Nothing will remain but love when this purpose is realized. This is why it is said that what remains in the end is love. This love comes through the perfect incarnation of faith and hope. The representative of this one love is the Messiah.
 
Today, as we approach Christmas, let’s give it up for Jesus and let’s give it up for our True Parents!
 
Brothers and sisters, through our service, I hope that we can all come to a new appreciation of what we have as Unification Church, the incredible teaching and power that we have. I hope that through this recognition we can really glorify True Parents and testify on their behalf. Let us all rise up and offer our family pledge!
 
Brothers and sisters, we are truly an incredible community from all around the world, especially our international community here. I see those beautiful yellow jackets of hope here in Seoul. We were passing by Seoul Station the other day and saw brothers and sisters proudly wearing the Unification Church yellow vest, with the big symbol on it, walking around and  talking about True Parents. We saw, even today, brothers and sisters who were out on the streets. We were so happy! Let’s give our proud Unificationists a big round of applause, let’s give them some encouragement!
 
 
Interesting Story
 
There has been an overwhelming demand for interesting comments, so here is a very interesting story that I heard:
 
A long time ago, in the 18th century, a pastor was riding furiously on his horse on his way to church; he was late. Suddenly the horse hit the stump of a tree and this flung him to the ground. He was injured, lying in the dirt, his body was in pain. The pastor called out because he could not do it on his own strength. He said, “All the angels in Heaven, please help me to get back up onto my horse!” At that, the pastor was able to supernaturally leap up into the air, but he leapt a bit too high, over the horse, and landed on the other side. Then from that side on the ground he said, “OK, angels, just half of you help me this time!”

Main Sermon
 
Today, I want to talk to you about the Purpose of the Lord. As we approach Christmas, as the whole world celebrates the birth of Jesus, then for us as Unification Church, for us who do believe in Jesus as the Messiah, for us I think it’s important and relevant  to spend a little time on the purpose of Christ.
 
Let’s look at some of the World Scriptures today.  This is from Christianity. Let’s read this together from 1 Corinthians 15:45: “The first man, Adam, became a living being; the last Adam [Jesus] became a life-giving spirit.”
 
Next is from Islam. Many people don’t know that within Islam, Jesus is a prophet. He’s called Isaa in the Qur’an, and also he’s seen as the Imam to return. So let’s take a look at this verse: “The likeness of Jesus with God is as the likeness of Adam.” (Qur’an 3:59).
 
And let’s look at True Parent’s words: “Jesus came as the incarnation of the Word. Jesus was the man whom God had been hoping to see over the long course of restoration history, the desire of God from the time of creation.” (3:318)
 
And let’s move to our Core Scriptures today. The first one comes from Matthew 26: 36-39. Let’s read this together: “Then Jesus went with his disciples to a place called Gethsemane, and he said to them, ‘Sit here while I go over there and pray.’ He took Peter and the two sons of Zebedee along with him, and he began to be sorrowful and troubled.”  He began to be sorrowful and troubled. “Then he said to them, ‘My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death. Stay here and keep watch with me.’ Going a little farther, he fell with his face to the ground and prayed, ‘My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.’ ”
 
As you know, in the story in Matthew 26, Jesus repeats this process three times. He comes back, sees them sleeping, goes back, prays at Gethsemane, comes back, goes back – three times he asks God, “Let this cup pass from me.”
 
I was talking to one of our ministers here at Headquarters Church this past week, and he said that he was asked a question by a non-Unificationist: “Hey, do you guys actually believe in Jesus as the Messiah? I heard that you guys denied Jesus.” This was the question. It’s very clear for us. Of course we believe in Jesus as Messiah – it’s not only central to our theology, it’s central to the mission of True Parents to complete and fulfill the mission of Jesus.
 
I realized that there is still so much misinformation out there, so much ignorance, still, pertaining to our theology. Of course, in the past thirty years, we have not been really declaring our beliefs and witnessing in a major way. So this is somewhat understandable, but now as we come more into the public and as the media wants to hear what we believe, and as these human rights issues come up in Japan, this huge violation, then people want to know what we believe.  Why is our faith so powerful that people will change their life to the point where they are so imbued by the Holy Spirit, that they’ll be persecuted and even attacked by other Christian ministers. Why do they do this? What does the Unification Church believe in? This is a major question.
 
When I was talking to Kook Jin hyung this past week, he was saying that really he never understood the value of the Divine Principle until he actually studied Christian theology. When he started to study Christian theology, he realized, My God! Christian theology is so inadequate in answering most of the fundamental questions that we take for granted within the Principle, questions like: What is the purpose of creating the whole universe?  What is the purpose of man? What is the purpose of Christ? How will the Kingdom actually be accomplished? How are these things connected?
 
Christian theology cannot explain how these are connected, theologically. You see, in Christian theology, Jesus came with the purpose to die. He came to die, so the crucifixion was God’s will. It was the predestined Will of God. In this type of theology, the crucifixion is the glory of Christ, because on that cross, he offers his body as the sacrifice for the sake of the world’s sin. So in the end, as Christians believe, and in the Christian theology, the ultimate purpose of Christ was for him, the sacrificial offering, to die for us.
But when we actually look at the Biblical scripture, we can see the exact opposite. As we just read together in Matthew 26, we can see Christ totally disappointed; we can see him in sorrow that he’s been rejected. We can see that his disciples are betraying him, like Judas, and sending in officials to get him, to crucify him. We can see that he is in so much pain. He’s begging God, “Please take this cup from me. Don’t let me go on the cross. Please, Father, let this pass.”  In Matthew 26 we can clearly see his heart, that Christ did not come to die. If the Lord’s purpose was to die, then why is he “overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death”? Why is he falling to the ground with his face down on the ground, and begging God, “Let this cup be taken from me”? Not once, twice, but three times, asking over and over? Why is he doing such a thing if his purpose was to die, if that was his predestined will?

In John 8:37, we see that Jesus is frustrated. He’s talking to the Jews, the Pharisees, the Saducees saying, “I know you are Abraham’s descendants, yet you are ready to kill me because you have no room for my word”, meaning: If you had room for my word, if you had accepted me, you would not be wanting to kill me. – You see, only the Divine Principle, only the Unification Church, is able to explain the truth that God did not send Christ to die – did not! – that that was not the purpose of Christ.

When we look at the Bible, at the disciples of Jesus, we see them lamenting the death and murder of Christ.  In the Acts of the Apostles 7:51-52, we see Stephen. He is lamenting the fact that Jesus was killed. He is chastising the Jews, saying, “You stiff-necked people, with uncircumcised hearts and ears! You are just like your fathers: You always resist the Holy Spirit! Was there ever a prophet your fathers did not persecute? They even killed those who predicted the coming of the Righteous One. And now you have betrayed and murdered him.” Stephen is saddened, grief-stricken that Jesus was killed, pointing to the fact that it was human error, not the predestined will of God to kill Jesus.

In 1 Corinthians 2:8, we see the great Saint Paul also lamenting the death of Christ. He says that “None of the rulers of this age understood [the wisdom of the Spirit], for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.” This again points to the fact, that human error was involved; that Jesus wasn’t supposed to be crucified. And this is only explained clearly and theologically within the Divine Principle. Only the Unification Church explains this from a powerful theological position. Christian theology does not explain this. Only the Principle elucidates this fact and reveals the suffering heart of Christ, the pain, what we call “Han.” It’s difficult to put a finger on what exactly Han means in translation, but Han is kind of like a pain, a feeling of frustration, a feeling of a mission unfulfilled. It’s like a feeling of not being truly understood, a heart-wrenching historical longing to see an original purpose fulfilled. It is like an incredible, intense longing and pain. This is what we elucidate in the Principle.

When you actually study Christian theology, you realize that Christian theology cannot explain the purpose of Christ other than he was to die, other than it was  predestined   by God for Jesus to die, even though the scripture shows the opposite. Of course there are Scriptural passages in the Bible where Jesus does say he will have to go on this path. When Peter asks him, “Jesus, do you have to go on this path?” he says, “Get back, Satan! I must go on this path.” We see these scriptural passages in the Bible. But again, we understand from the principled perspective that only the Unification Church explains clearly that it was not the primary goal of God to send Jesus on the cross; but it became a secondary option so that Jesus could attain at least spiritual salvation for humankind.

You see, fundamentally, when we look at Christian theology in its essence, when we look at its notion of God, its notion of Jesus, in Christian theology Jesus is Almighty God, not just a man. He is the creator of the universe, the oceans, the fish, the sea, the stars, everything. That is Jesus – Jesus is God. When we look at Christian theology and push it to its end, it declares that in the end, God is unknowable and that He is a “mystery.” These are known as the “mysteries of Christ” in the Catholic tradition.  So in the end, Christian theology cannot explain the divinity and essence of God; it declares that in the end, God is just “mysterious.” That is why it simply says, that you have to “just believe.” Believe, and when the Lord comes, he will answer your questions, because God is unknowable.

This essentially segregates man from God, leaving God lonely. When you look at Christian theology deeply, you notice that Christian theology also doesn’t really explain what the kingdom is and how it will be accomplished. It’s a very mysterious thing in Christian theology. The best answer is that the Lord will return one day, and that he will take us up in a divine rapture, that he will take us to Heaven, especially the ones who believe.
So in the end, Christian theology does not answer the Purpose of Creation. It cannot explain the divinity of God, and it cannot explain what the kingdom of God is, how it will be accomplished and how all these things are connected to the mission of Jesus. This is, again, why the Principle is so powerful.

You see, only the Unification Church, with the power of the Divine Principle, can reveal the answers to these questions, because the True Parents come to fulfill the mission of Christ, because they come to share that message that the returning Lord will share. Only the Principle shows how the Purpose of Creation is connected to the divinity of God, how that is connected to the kingdom of heaven, how the kingdom of heaven will be accomplished, and how that is connected to Jesus. Only the Principle shows that there is a process here. You see, True Father explains very clearly that God’s divinity is not unknowable, but it can be explained. God’s divinity can be known. It is only when we do understand, and we do penetrate into God’s divinity, that we can be one with Him.
Father defines what God’s essence is. He defines God’s divinity. He defines it as True Love – very simple. But he also defines what True Love is:  it’s a love that is so pure and powerful, filled with so much loving compassion that it will die and die and die again for the sake of its children, even for the sake of its enemies; and through that process, it will bring its enemies to natural surrender. Father says that True Love brings even Satan to natural surrender.

The Unification Church explains what the divinity of God is. It doesn’t say that it’s just a mystery, unknowable, but that we can understand it, that we can define it, and we can try to inherit it.  We can then try to understand what the Unification Movement talks about when we talk about the Purpose of Creation. Christian theology does not give an explanation of why creation was created, what is mankind’s role in this process in Genesis. All the way to the end of Revelation the Unification Principle explains things very clearly. The purpose of creation is very simple. The purpose of creation, of mankind, is to inherit the divinity of God. It is to inherit true love.

But in the process of the Fall, we see that mankind inherited false love, not pure love. If Adam and Eve inherited true love, the essence of God, they would become True Parents. Very simple. If they were able to teach that heart to their children, and the children to the tribes and the nation, and if those individuals were able to inherit that true love, that would be the kingdom. So there is a process through which we can explain the connection between God’s divinity, the purpose of creation, the purpose of the original ancestor, and the creation of the kingdom, which Christian theology cannot do (cannot explain). Only the Divine Principle shows this powerful connection between all these facets, and why those are so essential to the mission of Jesus Christ, why they are all actually connected to Jesus.

Christ’s mission was not to die. It was to succeed, it was to be glorious. It was to fulfill the promise that God gave to mankind at the beginning, to inherit His true love, and to create the kingdom. So we see Jesus pray about this, in the prayer in Matthew 6: “Thy kingdom come, thy will be done…” He is praying, let us have your kingdom on earth as it is in heaven, because that was his mission. His mission was to establish the kingdom, where the inheritors of the essence of God’s true love live. Let’s take a look at Romans 8:28:  “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.”

The Unification Church loves Him, and we have been called to His purpose. That is why, simply and objectively speaking, we are the fastest-growing religion in the time of the founder compared to any other religion in history. Compare it to any ancient or even new religions, the Bahai tradition, the Mormon tradition, the Hari Krishna, Soka Gakkai, etc. When you actually study religion and study theology, you realize that objectively speaking, the Unification Church is the most successful religion during the time of its founder. And we will continue to succeed, and continue to return glory to God. Let’s give it up for the Unification Church! That’s why it’s important to study theology and learn religion, to understand the value of what True Parents have accomplished.

This is why the returning Christ has to come back. He’s coming back to create the Unification Movement, because True Parents are the champions of loving Jesus. If we really read True Parent’s early speeches and volumes and prayers, there is so much love for Jesus. It’s unbelievable! I think a lot of us growing up in the younger generation don’t understand this. There is so much profound love for Jesus. True Parents, because of their love, seek to give their life to liberate Christ, to make us more than conquerors, and to help us, so that we love Jesus as well, so that we are called to this purpose.

For two thousand years of Christian history, Christian theology fundamentally could not explain fundamental questions – man’s existence, why we’re here in the first place, what we’re supposed to do, what God is, and how the kingdom will be created. True Father has penetrated and fulfilled the mission of Jesus, he has revealed these critical connections. In this process, he has worked toward liberating Jesus. I’ll tell you why the Christian theology is an incomplete theology: because even within its theology, it says it must wait for the Lord to return to complete its theology. Within itself, it requires the Lord to come back in order to complete the theology. Without even knowing it, many Christians do not understand this aspect of Christian theology. That’s why when they meet the Principle, they are so moved and transformed.

When I was studying at Harvard, we used the critical historical method to go into the biblical text.  If the Bible is the literal word of God and it is not tainted by human hands, not tainted by interpretations of individuals, as the Christians believe that the Bible IS the literal word of God, then how do we explain the five or six different versions of the Bible – the NKJ version, NIV version, the Catholic version? Some of these conflict with each other. Some of these versions actually say that another version is wrong. How do you explain the biblical texts? When we look with the historical critical method, we understand that there are many texts that we are not including in the Bible. We see what are known as the extracanonical texts, the gospel of Thomas, the gospel of Mary, of Peter, etc., so many extracanonical texts that were not added to the Biblical scripture.

In fact when I was at the school of theology, I was studying alongside evangelical Christians. Some of them were Koreans. Some of my friends were evangelical Christians. They were all fired up about going to Harvard and said, “I’m going to be an awesome pastor.” Then they come and actually study theology and religion, the historical critical method, study whether or not the biblical text IS foolproof, IS the literal word of God. And then we go through the evidence that scholars and archaeologists have been able to uncover, and we look at what  we can actually prove about Jesus. And fundamentally, scholars can actually prove only about two things: the fact that maybe he was a Jew, and the fact that he died on the cross. We know this because there are historical texts at the time around Jesus that mention that there was a figure, that he was the Messiah and was crucified, but there were also hundreds of (other) people who were crucified at the same time as him. There is also text that shows that  things  are totally off (different) from what we usually see in the passion narratives, in the Christian Bible.

When my friends, the evangelical Christians, encountered these things, their faith was shattered. But as a Unificationist, because we have an interpretation from the Divine Principle, and because from a principled perspective we see the Bible as being inspired by God but also having symbolic and metaphorical usage, then for me, it was much more comfortable to listen and analyze the Bible and look at the life of Jesus with the critical historical lens, than it was for my friends who were from the Christian evangelical traditions. What was the result of that? Most of my friends, who went in saying, “I’m going to be an awesome Harvard-trained pastor!”, when they came out, said “I’m not going to be a pastor.” The fundamental notions of Christian theology fundamentally break down, when you look at it through the historical text and the historical critical method.
When you look at the enlightenment that True Parents brought to the notion of Jesus, that he was not to die, that that wasn’t the will of God, and when you look at even the extracanonical and many other texts,  (you will see that) they support the fact that Jesus was not to die. Some of the texts say that he didn’t even die.

But we see that True Parents lived their lives to fulfill his purpose and to alleviate the pain of Christ. True Father is the only one that I know of who physically brought Jews, Muslim and Christian leaders to come together in the holy land. Among the religious leaders that I know, True Father is the only one that  brought those leaders to actually take down the cross of Jesus. In Christian theology, the cross is the glory of Christ, but if you look at the reality of Christ’s situation, what we see is that the cross is (the symbol for) the failure of humankind to accept Jesus. It represents not the victory, but the failure of humanity to recognize the preciousness of Jesus. So when Father went there with the Jews and Christian leaders who understood this and were awakened to this, they said “Yes, we have to liberate Jesus’ heart!” We know the fact that a lot of our Christian pastor friends came with us to bury the cross. They took down the cross from their church, and instead put up the crown, because that was what Jesus was supposed to do. We have pictures of  the delegations of the Muslim community, the Druze community, the Jewish community and the Christian community coming together before the throne of Christ, to give and offer a crown to Christ – not a cross, but a crown, to say to Jesus, “You were here to become the king of kings.” This is incredible! Let’s give it up for True Parents! They want to liberate Jesus.

This is very phenomenal, actually. When we study religion and compare True Father’s actions and what he has done compared with other religious leaders, even new religious traditions (Bahá’u’lláh and Joseph Smith, for example), you’ll see there is a phenomenal difference. So when we see that True Parents have come to really fulfill the mission of Christ, to liberate his heart, this is such an incredible thing that True Parents are doing. Through the liberation of Christ, they are once again connecting those things that were shattered, the purpose of creation, the divinity of God, the kingdom of heaven, the process of how that’s going to begin, they’re connecting those things once again. That is what’s so powerful about the Unification theology. We can actually explain how we will create the kingdom.

As we begin our faith life again as Unificationists, as we rediscover our faith, we will say, “My God! What we have is so valuable!” I never really understood the value of what we have until I went out there, lived with those communities and listened to their theology, and then was able to compare that to our theology. I never understood how powerful our theology was. As we begin our faith life again, as we go out and witness, as we go out and declare that True Parents are the Lord, that they are the people who liberate Jesus, that they fulfill his mission, that they bring a higher truth that will elevate the religions to a higher level, then we will also receive questions: “Do you believe in Jesus? Well, I thought Jesus was supposed to die”, such questions. We have to remember that it is people who truly love Jesus who will be the most resistant to any other interpretation of Jesus.  But if they actually open their heart, and if we continue to love them, and explain to them and ask them to not only make an emotional decision based on what they have heard from the beginning to this point in their life, but to actually think about what the mission of Jesus was, then many people can come to understand that Christ’s real mission was to be victorious.

I was talking to a brother and sister this week, a wonderful family.  The gentleman is in a construction company, he is in his 50s, and he’s a new member who has been in the church just a couple of years. He was an evangelical Christian since he was five years old, a Korean evangelical Christian. From five years old, he found Jesus and lived his life for Jesus.  He had a hard life when he was young. He lost his father at an early age, and his mother remarried. He was twelve years old when he got a new dad.  It was very difficult and he was very lonely. So, he said that when he discovered Christ at an early age, he was so fulfilled. He went to church whenever he needed a safe haven, to get away from home; he would go and pray.  For forty years, he lived as a devout Christian.  He moved from Pusan all the way up to Seoul, and he was attending the big mega-churches here. He was actually an elder in one of the communities, a very established Christian.

Then, because his last name is Moon, he got connected to the Moon tribe group, and somehow heard the Principle. He attended a 2-day lecture, and he said it shattered his mind. He couldn’t believe what he was hearing. It was amazing! “I love Jesus so much, and these questions have been haunting me: Why was Jesus to die? Am I just supposed to die? Wasn’t Jesus here to be victorious? Aren’t we here to be in the likeness of Christ?” He had all these fundamental questions: “How can God be so mysterious? How can we ever love Him and feel His love and be transformed?” When he heard the Principle, those things were one by one shattered. He said to me, “Use the Principle. When I talk about the Principle, I tell my friends that Jesus came to live, to be glorious, to fulfill the prophecies and he was supposed to unite the world, create the kingdom.” He was so moved when sharing this message. This brother told us, “Be confident because we have the Principle.” He said, “For the first time in my life, I’m going around saying, ‘I’m a Unificationist. I’m not just hanging out with Unificationists, I AM a Unificationist!’ ” Let’s give it up for Unificationists!

So he said that, of course, those who truly love Jesus, will be resistant at first, but in the end, they will be moved by the heart of our brothers and sisters, by the heart of us as Unificationists, who truly love Jesus and want to liberate his heart, by True Father, who has lived his life, risked his life, given his life, so that Jesus could be at peace.

When they actually understand that no other religious figure has done what True Father has done for Jesus, that is when the transformation comes. When they open their heart emotionally that way, then the Principle, the power of its rational explanation and systematic theology, can come into their heart. That’s why in this age, it’s so important to realize that, as we now approach Christmas, as we celebrate the birth of Jesus, that we as Unificationists are also called  to love Jesus; that loving Jesus, and knowing about Jesus is actually very important in understanding the messianic role of True Parents. I never really understood True Parents until I started studying about Jesus. Even the way Jesus acted, I realized, “My God! True Father acts just like Jesus!”  Jesus was not the nicest man on earth – he was very radical in what he said, very strong. If you read the Bible, you can see how strongly he speaks, how he challenges the world.

As we approach this season, towards the New Year, the celebration of Christmas and God’s Day, etc., I really pray that the Unificationist brothers and sisters around the world can remember and understand the heart of Jesus, and have confidence. The explanations that we can give to Christians can not only open their minds, but when we make them understand Jesus in a new way, can completely transform their lives. Come on, brothers and sisters, that’s our scripture – powerful! Let’s give it up once more for the Divine Principle! Powerful!

I want to finish with a reading from True Parent’s words, the first volume, page 74:
“Please allow us in this hour to clearly understand that it is our responsibility to bear the burden of the course Jesus walked and of the words of the gospel that Jesus left behind. It is also our responsibility to fight with millions of satans and to return the glory of victory to the Father. Just as Jesus had a desperate and earnest heart toward Heaven, allow us also to have the same heart toward Heaven.”
Let us all bow our heads, and turn to our final meditation practice.

 
Altar Call
 
Let’s hold each other’s hands in brotherhood and sisterhood. I want you to lift up your hands to Heaven. Let us pray!
 
Heavenly Parent and our most beloved True Parents, we thank you so much that we can be alive at this time, that we can come to understand the truth that Jesus was not here to die, that the purpose of Jesus’ coming was to be victorious and start a new history, a new era when the kingdom could flourish, that there would be peace and that there would be love between brothers and sisters.
 
As brothers and sisters, we know that in the process that True Parents have elucidated, we can find our true value, we can understand our purpose to truly be able to inherit Your divinity, Your essence, Your true love, Father, a love that is a parental heart, a love that will sacrifice itself for the sake of its children, that will lay down its life for the sake of the world, that will lay down its life over and over, even descending into the hells so that the children may be free. Father, it is that kind of heroic heart that is the True Parents’ heart. Father, let us not inherit a lesser form of love, a weaker, self-centered kind of love.
 
Father, let us inherit Your divine nature, Your parental heart. Heavenly Father, we pray that, as we do that, we will become manifestations of Your kingdom, that our families and tribes will become the kingdom that is growing, the kingdom that is to come. Father, we pray that You may awaken us this time, that we, as Unificationists, can pray about Jesus and love Jesus, that we may understand that it is Jesus’ mission that True Father has come to fulfill and it is that mission through which True Parents have liberated the heart of the Messiah. Father, we are so grateful because only the returning Lord would do such a thing, to sacrifice himself for his predecessor, to sacrifice his life so that the predecessor may be at peace and find joy. Father, thank You so much because True Parents have shown us what the true parental heart is through the seven deaths and resurrections. Father, let us come to imbibe and to inherit that type of phenomenal, cosmic love.
 
Father, we brothers and sisters are now reclaiming our faith. We are not just keeping it to ourselves and being embarrassed about who we are, but now we are once again declaring to the world that we have a right to believe, that nobody can take away our religion from us, and that we are proud of what we believe – not because we are uneducated, not because we are ignorant, but because we have studied theology deeply, because we are truly knowledgeable about the heart of Christ. Father, let us move past any of the offenses, the attacks that will come against us, any of the attempts to try to squash our faith, to squash our pride and our confidence. Let us be greater than that force. Father, let us know that You are with us, that Jesus also is with us, that True Parents’ mission is victorious, that we are now moving in the spirit of that resurrection power. Father, let us change people’s lives, let us teach Principle once again, and let people be transformed and be born anew.
 
We thank You so much. Father, we want to pray and give thanks at the end of this year as it comes to Christmas and the New Year. We want to celebrate You and give thanks. We pray all these things as brothers and sisters in faith and love and in lineage. We pray as Blessed Central Families and in the Name of our True Parents, Aju!

 

Read the rest of this entry »


Rev. Hyung Jin Nim's Interesting Story

December 22, 2009

You know before we start we always like to start with something a little interesting.
 
I heard a story about a man who went to confession, and he said, “Father, forgive me for I have sinned!” The priest asked, “Well, what is your sin my son?” The man started, “You know this week, I used some terrible, awful, terrible language, and I feel absolutely terrible.” “When did you use this awful language, my son? “  the priest asked. “Well, you know, I was golfing,” the man said, “and I hit an incredible drive, and it looked like it was going to go 250 yards but it struck a power line that was hanging over the green and fell straight down on the ground only after about 100 yards.” “Is that when you swore, when you used bad language?”  “No, Father, after that a squirrel ran out of the bushes, grabbed my ball in his mouth and began to run away.” “Is that when you used bad language my son?”
 
“No, Father, you see, the squirrel was running away and the eagle came down out of the sky, grabbed the squirrel in its talons and flew away.” “Is that when you used bad language my son?” “No, Father, not yet. As the eagle carried the squirrel away in its claws, it flew towards the green, and as it passed over a bit of forest near the green, the squirrel dropped my ball.” “Is that when you swore then? That’s when you swore, isn’t it?” “No, because, you see, the ball fell, it struck a tree, bounced through some bushes, careened off a big rock and rolled through a sand trap onto the green and stopped within 6 inches of the hole!” The priest said,” So, I see, you missed the putt!” (Applause) Oh! You got it today! Oh! You golf lovers, you got it!

Sermon: Supernatural Preparation / June 13th, 2009

Read the rest of this entry »


Rev, Hyung Jin Nim's Prayer

December 22, 2009

Heavenly Father, True Parents, thank You so much for this incredible day that You have given to us. Father, we thank You for preparing this incredible, supernatural age. It is an age where miracles for our movement begin to happen.
 
We have sweated and shead our tears and our blood for our Unification movement. We have seen True Parents walking the way of the cross in the indemnity period. We have seen the elders in our movement offering their way on that thorny path. But with the incredible opening of the age of liberation and complete release, True Parents were able to become Your object partner and liberate You from Your loneliness.
 
We know that because of that, this age is opening, and we see our movement transforming and changing. We see it becoming so much more transparent and fair. We see the movement being accepted in society’s eyes and more and more impressing society. We see that this age has truly been prepared. We want to acknowledge all Your efforts, all Your supernatural efforts that You have done for us. We also want to acknowledge the incredible efforts of the great saints that are with us and  moving  the  religious people to be able to really understand True Parents’ life and providential course.
 
Thank You so much for this time. We pray that in this time we can have confidence and that we can share our faith with pride. And that we truly know that we will make a difference in this world as Unificationists. We thank You so much for You have truly blessed us. We want to offer all this to You in joy and gratitude in our own names as central blessed families. Aju!

Sermon: Supernatural Preparation / June 13th, 2009

Read the rest of this entry »


True Inheritors

December 10, 2009

November 28, 2009, HQ Church, Seoul Korea

   Even in our own family we can say that we are not perfect beings. We have disappointed True Parents many times as children, but True Parents continue to fight for God, they continue to love God first, and that in the end became the greatest teaching to all of us, to love God and the world. Every pain that we encounter in life, the Messiah feels and experiences this as well. The fact that all things aren’t perfect doesn’t take away from the fact that True Parents are the Messiah; it actually confirms that they are the Messiah. Because despite all the imperfection around them, despite all the betrayal that they have had to endure, despite all the hate that they had received, they continue to live for one purpose, endlessly, year after year, decade after decade, to share the inheritance of God’s true love. 

Welcoming Remarks:

Yeon Ah Nim

Good afternoon brothers and sisters! (Good afternoon)

It is always our honor to have you here in this sanctuary. On this happy Thanksgiving Day,  I hope you guys have a spiritual feast during the service time and have a beautiful dinner with your family members.  May you and your family have an eternal blessing with your family on this Thanksgiving Day. Aju! 

Rev. Hyung Jin Nim

Good afternoon brothers and sisters!

Let’s start by manifesting the Principle.  Give and receive action.  Four position foundation.  May I inherit the true love of God.  Aju!

We want to share Father’s words on page 607 of Cheon Seong Gyeong.  Father speaks about the spirit world.  He says, “In the spirit world, everyone rejects egoists but welcomes altruists.  Among those who go to the spirit world after living on earth, the altruists take the top places. This is especially so for those who apply  themselves in for example forty countries and live for others with the heart that they would have toward their mother and family, and with the heart of a saint to save the people of the world.”

Brothers and sisters, when Father is talking about altruism, he is really talking about the essence of God, the true love of God that seeks to serve and live for others.  And this heart is the heart that we as Unificationists seek to try to inherit.  You see, brothers and sisters, Father says here, that when we are able to live in that realm – even though we may have flaws and imperfections – then we live in that realm of heart, where we are as a parent towards humanity trying to save the children that God so wishes to embrace.  

Brothers and sisters, on this Thanksgiving week, it was actually Thanksgiving on Thursday, but on this weekend, we pray that all of us may inherit this greater love, this greater heart and, particularly in this service, to return great glory to God and True Parents.

Main Sermon:

Today I want to talk to you about the “True Inheritors.” Let’s look at some of the world scriptures today.

Let’s look at Christianity. This is Matthew 28:19-20. Let’s read this together. 

“Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” Aju. 

This is known as the Great Commission, one of the keystones of Christianity and its success. 
Let’s take a look at Buddhism. This is from the Garland Sutra 36. Let’s read this together. 
“I should be a lamp for the world replete with the virtues of Buddhahood…All sentient beings burn with greed, anger and ignorance; I should save and free them.” Aju.
Next is from Islam. This is from the Qur’an 16:125. Let’s read this together. 

“Call to the way of your Lord with wisdom and exhortation. Reason with them in the most courteous manner.” Aju.

And from True Father, this is from the collection of all speeches Vol.33 p.69, and let’s read this together. 
“By witnessing through the Divine Principle, we are carrying out a movement to revive love, the world of heart, which transcends time and space. Our worlds and our prayers are ultimately for the sake of love. Let us realize the ideal of love – that is perfection.” Aju.

Today let us focus on this core scripture from Matthew 25:34-40. This is known as the ‘Sheep and goats parable.” Let’s look at a portion from this section. Let’s read it together. 
“Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’ Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’ The King will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.’ ” Aju.

Here we can realize something very important. For Jesus Christ those who inherit his love, those who testify on his behalf and follow him, they are like the most precious jewels in the cosmos. When others treat them well, as the scripture says, they are going to be blessed. They are going to have Jesus’ love. 
It is the same for True Parents. As the inheritors of love, we can capture the ultimate value for God and True Parents. Those who live with the parental heart, that we see manifested in the Seven Deaths and Resurrection, the heart that will go the path of laying down their life for their children over and over again so that the children can be free – this kind of incredible heart – those who can inherit that heart for the sake of the world and True Parents, these become the jewels. And whoever helps the least of these children of True Parents will have done the same for True Parents. 
Last week we had a wonderful blessing in meeting our brother Goto-san who came all the way from Japan in person. We had a great time with him. He gave an incredible testimony about the  victory of faith and the victory of love, how he overcame his oppressors by natural subjugation.

But then after service we had more incredible miracles. On the next day, Monday morning, we gathered at Cheon Jeong Gung with True Parents and had hoondokhae with them. Then after hoondokhae, it was Kook Jin Hyung’s son’s birthday, but we asked Goto-san, “Please come to the table with True Parents.” And so Goto-san came to the table with True Parents and he just cried and cried, like his dream is coming true. 12 years and 5 months he was tortured and now he could see True Parents! And  I love Father’s reaction! As soon as we described, “This is Goto-san, the person who went through this incredible turmoil and this human rights violation and yet the first thing that he said when he was liberated was ‘are True Parents healthy?’ That’s the first thing he said! That  incredible inheritance of the filial heart!” then Father invited him. He said: “Quickly sit down. Where is the food? Bring him food. Bring him food. Feed him, feed him. My son is hungry!” That was so moving, so moving! When we saw that we were,”Oh my God!” Everybody was crying at the table. It was so amazing!

When we see this kind of heroic faith and when we remember that we have this kind of heroic faith, when we see this we can look at Goto-san and say, “He is a remarkable fellow.” But we can also make the mistake of thinking that he has some kind of superpower or that he is not human, and that he is better than all of us. But that is not the case. Goto-san is also a human being just like you and I. He is just the same as us. He is not a perfect individual. But he is heroic in his faith  because of his incredible love, the love that defeats even death and oppression. That kind of inheritance of the filial heart, that is what is heroic about this incredible fellow.

When we see his life we see that he is standing on the frontline till this day. He was repenting in his sermon. He said, “I repent that for 12 years I couldn’t help the providence. 12 years I couldn’t witness to True Parents, I couldn’t testify on their behalf.” This is a man who was stripped of his human rights, and he is pained in his heart that he could not be on the frontline, running with the members. This kind of incredible inheritance of heart! This is amazing! You see, we don’t respect him because he is some kind of flawless, perfect human being. We respect him because he is a true inheritor of the love of True Parents. 

It’s the same thing when many people think of the Messiah or the messianic figure then we tend to think of him as a flawless being and all that he does and touch will succeed and prosper. But that is simply not true. When we look at Jesus’ life, Jesus never succeeded and prospered as a flawless being. He was mocked and persecuted. In the eyes of man he was a complete failure. Even twelve disciples couldn’t follow him to the end. They were denying him. 12 people!

Many of our attackers that attack True Parents say that they are fake and they’re a fraud, that they are not real messianic figures. They say that because they are not perfect and because their family is not perfect or because their church is not perfect and because all the things that they pray about are not coming to pass, then that’s a proof that they are false. But this is not understanding the truth of the Messiah. 

When I was 20 I remember even myself  thinking, “Why does True Father talk about world peace? Why does he always talk about world peace, do conferences on world peace? We cannot even unite this church, we cannot even unite this community! Talk about world peace! We cannot even unite True Family! Talk about world peace!” But I realize I didn’t understand what the Messiah was or what true love was. 

The Messiah doesn’t come as a God, perfect, flawless, he comes as a man who experiences the joys and the ills, the selfishness, the poverty, the war, the pain of humanity. True Father lived most of his young adult life in total poverty. He endured two wars, and he has seen death and destruction right in front of his eyes. He suffered in torture camps and forced labor camps. He endured racism and hatred based on faith. He has been spit on, literally spit on, cursed at, beaten, torn and broken and he has seen his children not obey him and even hate him in their immaturity. 

But we say, “This is not the characteristics of a Messiah.” No, no, no! The Messiah endures all the pains, all the sufferings that normal human beings encounter. And I heard members tell me that they cannot appear in the community because many of their children have married outside or because their families aren’t perfect, and because Father talks about family salvation – that the family has to go to Cheon Il Guk – so they think they have no adequacy to come in front of True Parents or to stand on the front line because their family is not in order. But I tell them, “What is important is to understand this: Individual salvation does not mean that that individual is perfect. And in the same way a family that is on the path of salvation is not flawless. But despite of the ordeals that we encounter we center ourselves on the inheritance of true love and on the sharing of that inheritance of true love.”

Even in our own family we can say that we are not perfect beings. We have disappointed True Parents many times as children, but True Parents continue to fight for God, they continue to love God first, and that in the end became the greatest teaching to all of us, to love God and the world. Every pain that we encounter in life, the Messiah feels and experiences this as well. The fact that all things aren’t perfect doesn’t take away from the fact that True Parents are the Messiah; it actually confirms that they are the Messiah. Because despite all the imperfection around them, despite all the betrayal that they have had to endure, despite all the hate that they had received, they continue to live for one purpose, endlessly, year after year, decade after decade, to share the inheritance of God’s true love. 

As a young person I always thought that true love was just encouraging the children, listening to our complaints, giving us what we wanted and when we wanted, “Daddy, give me that.” “Okay!” “Now I know you love me.” (Laughter) Or not telling us the truth if it hurts. This kind of love! This in Buddhism is known as “foolish compassion, foolish love.” 

And I realize that this was the false type of concept. This was never what True Parents wanted us to inherit. In fact, they were always strong with us, about how we must love God, how we must serve the world, always emphasizing that.

True Parents wanted us to inherit a true love that was not thinking of ourselves, or how others have to be sensitive to me, or how everybody has to watch me, but a true love that would sacrifice and serve. “Go the path of suffering and slender and even scorn so that others may be free from such a path, like our descendants or our future children and grandchildren.” He didn’t change because we complained, or because the world persecuted him; he never changed. He remained solely focused on the liberation of God’s heart. And in the end that became the greatest teaching to every single one of the children. 

A true Messiah can endure the inevitable evils and sufferings of the world, not because he doesn’t feel or encounter them – he does – but because he lives not for himself but for the world and for the Creator of this world. Let’s give it up for God and True Parents! (Applause)

Because of that heart, True Father has fought for us to create a better world. He has fought for us to have the pride of having the most successful religion at the time of their founder. He fought for that, so that we could have that pride. It’s the inheritance of this heroic faith and this heroic love that lets True Father overcome the difficulties and imperfections that he sees in his life. 

Just in the month of October we had a report given to us by the World Mission Department. They reported that the Japanese church witnessed to over 3,500 people last month. In one month, 3,500 new Unificationists! Let’s give it up for a big birthday! (Applause) 

They did it by declaring True Parents. 2,000 new members, 1,500 members that used to attend church but now are coming back to the church, and it is this kind of amazing inheritance of True Parents heroic faith – testifying on behalf of True Parents – which is at the core of the Japanese church’s success. 

But the question may arise, “Why haven’t they grown according to the potential that we see when we look at the Japanese church?” The answer is very easy. For thirty years the Japanese church has had to help the entire world providence. They had the sole responsibility of funding the entire world providence. But I want you to imagine just for one second, if they for thirty years didn’t have that burden and they testified and continued to live with this kind of incredible faith, think about how amazing the Unification Church would be in Japan. It would probably be one of the biggest religions there already. 

This is not to say that in the Korean church, or in the American church, we don’t have this potential to inherit this kind of faith and inherit this kind of excitement. That is not true! Even in Korea, the church in the early days had this kind of faith. It had this incredible inheritance of this excitement of love for the world that wishes to seek and save spiritual lives by testifying. It had this incredible burning desire. 

We saw incredible histories in the beginning of the early church in Korea. We were able to witness to some of the most powerful Christians in all of Korea. We had the runner-up for the presidency of Ehwa University – that is the largest women university in Korea, it’s a Christian evangelical school – she converted to become a member. We also converted that university’s pastor! The pastor converted after hearing the Principle! That was how powerful things were happening at the time. 

That kind of exciting faith was so incredible. Christians would see that and say, “My God, we have to watch out for these Unificationists!” That’s where a lot of the oppression and attacks started. But as time went on, then because of those attacks we slowly lost that kind of faith, that  excitement for our tradition, the excitement that the Lord has returned. 

But I still believe that we have that (excitement) deep inside of us, we have that in the resources of our mind and heart, we have the desire to wanting to testify to True Parents, to change the world, to be able to save souls. We still have that in our hearts. True Parents overcame the difficulties in their life, not through ordinary means but by extraordinary faith, by extraordinary inheritance of a heroic type of faith and love for God. For us now, we as a movement need to tap into that heart again, to re-inherit that kind of faith and love for True Parents and the world, to become true inheritors that move out into the world. Just like the Japanese church is actually doing right now. 

This is why we need new faces, like Goto-san, because they remind us that our faith is not dead, that we are still alive, that we still have passion in our life, that we still have movement forward to be able to be effective in sharing that the Lord has come. When we re-tap into this beginner’s mind we have the power to change the nations and the world. This was the most incredible sight that in the early days people who were not members saw. They saw that incredible power. 

In the present time the Japanese church will continue to grow. They are estimating 40,000 new members in one year; that kind of incredible revival in Japan! And here in Korea we can also do that. We also can do it. We also can have that kind of faith and that kind of success that comes through inheriting that kind of heroic love and faith. 

When we become, once again, excited about our faith, excited to share what we have, to share the truth of the Principle, to start talking to people, discussing with them the issues of theology that Christians have dealt with the last two thousand years without answer, then we are able to engage in that blessing, in that new era. 

No one in the Korean church or in the Korean nation will do this for us. It’s only by our returning to our faith and our love for the world, returning to that powerful thing that started it all. Actually it was the faith that was inherited by the Japanese church! By coming back to that faith we will be able to speak to the nations and declare to the Lord that we are the true inheritors and that the Lord has returned and that the nations will hear it. If you believe it, brothers and sisters, let’s give it up for God and True Parents! (Applause) It is time!

Let’s finish this sermon with one last quotation of True Parents. This comes from Father’s prayer, an incredible prayer. 

“May all those who follow Thy heart be as candles lighting the five continents, lighthouses on the great sea. May we become witnesses, knowing the mission we shoulder, ready to testify to Thy deep heart, and going forward as incarnations of Thy love.” Aju    
 

Altar Call Prayer :

Heavenly Father, thank You so much.  True Parents thank you for being victorious in  inheriting the essence of God, in sharing that inheritance with us so that, Father, we can inherit that kind of parental heart, the heart which sees the whole world in suffering and wishes to save that world.  Father, let us have the heart of the true inheritors, the inheritors that have the true value, an ultimate value, in the eyes of True Parents and the Lord.

Father, we thank You so much that You have gathered us in this place, so that we can, Father, remember once again who we are.  Father, let us have purpose in our life.  Father, let us not only pursue our own ambitions, but Father, let us also inherit the greater love that seeks to be able to go even the path of difficulty so that our children and our grandchildren may be free from such things.  

Father, we pray that we may inherit that kind of incredible true love, the love that was manifested in the seven deaths and resurrections. True Parents walked the path of death, descended into hell to take our place, and they would do it over and over without end to the day that their children may enter Your graceful kingdom.

We thank You so much.  We want to inherit that true love today, and we pray that we may have a greater faith, a greater love that can truly move the nations.  Father, we pray and we know that that starts from within. We want to inherit that today, we want to testify on your behalf and we want to be proud of who we are, whose children we are, and what we are as a Unification Movement.  

We thank You so much. Allow us to inherit Your love and use us in a great way. Use us not for ourselves but use us so that we may be the greatest blessing on earth.  We thank You so much.  We want to dedicate this grace and this thanks to You on this day.

We offer these prayers, praying with gratitude and thankfulness in our own names.  Lifting up the name of True Parents we pray as their children.  Aju.

Read the rest of this entry »