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!
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!