Unofficial Notes from
International Conferences for Clergy Questions And Answers
ICC - Questions And Answers - Restoration; Adam, Eve And Jesus
QUESTION: 1. If God will only commune with perfected beings, why then can we go boldly to the throne of Grace, to obtain mercy in time of need?
ANSWER: But we cannot go directly, can we? We need the mediator of Christ and His name to present ourselves before the throne of Grace. That is why Jesus said no one can go to the Father except through Him. The point that I made was not that Adam and Eve could not commune with God, they certainly could. But to do so they would have to fulfill a condition of faith in His word. For us, we need the condition of faith in the in the word made flesh in order to come to God.
QUESTION: 2. When you speak of Adam as a son of God and Jesus as a son of God, are you speaking of the same thing?
ANSWER: No, Adam was the Son of God, who did not fulfill His role of faith and therefore never assumed that status and position of dominion afforded to the position of the son. Jesus was the Son of God, because He remained faithful and achieved the victorious crown of perfection, thus becoming the True First Ancestor of all mankind (see Hebrews chapters 1 and 2, as well as Hebrews 5:7-9).
QUESTION: 3. If Jesus sorrowed unto death because of the prolonging of the Kingdom of God here on the earth, what would have happened to all of us that needed to be born?
ANSWER: If Christ had been received, I don't see how in your view it would hinder your birth. We would still be born, only into a much more God centered world.
QUESTION: 4. In what sense is Adam the first born and in what sense is Christ the first born?
ANSWER: Adam was the first born in the since of chronology. Adam had the potential to fulfill the position as the first born son, if he had kept faith in God's word. Jesus was the first in the sense of quality in that He did not sin and accomplished the perfection that Adam did not. Jesus was, therefore, the first to fulfill the position as the first Son of God. See Hebrews 2:10, 5:7-9.
QUESTION: 5. It seems you are placing all prophets in the position of Adam when Jesus is referred to in scripture as the Second Adam.
ANSWER: All prophets (central figures) are in the position of fallen Adam. Jesus however, was in the position of the living Adam and the sinless, divine Son of God.
QUESTION: 6. Why does Jesus need a foundation upon which to appear if he is the chief cornerstone of the foundation that the apostles and prophets built?
ANSWER: That God prepared Israel as a foundation for Christ to appear would not be considered a wild extreme cultist view. As a matter of fact, virtually all Christian scholarship would concur with that view. It does not, however, mean and we are not saying, that Jewish culture is the foundation of the Kingdom. You are absolutely correct in saying Jesus was the cornerstone. Israel is merely the foundation upon which Christ appears. It is Christ who will then build the Kingdom and erect the new traditions of the Heavenly Culture. This is why Israel struggled so much with Jesus. He was not just reaffirming Hebrew culture, He was fulfilling it.
QUESTION: 7. Are you saying the Old Testament prophets represented a type of Christ.. ie. bearing the sins of mankind? If so, what is your scriptural basis?
ANSWER: No, this is not our view. The central figures were representatives of the fallen Adam, working to indemnify Adam's sin. The work of the prophets of old was to make a foundation for Jesus to appear upon. In this respect, the central figures leading up to Jesus foreshadowed the coming of Christ, but could not fulfill a role to remove the sin of man... only the sinless Son of God could do that.
QUESTION: 8. You said that Christ could have come at the time of Cain and Abel if they "met the conditions" of God. What do you do with all the prophecies of the Old Testament that set down conditions for the Messiah's coming?
ANSWER: The prophets did not appear until after the failure of the United Kingdom under Solomon. Because of Solomon's failure the prophets came over the next 600 year period to set the scene for the events to come in Israel. Had previous central persons been successful, the prophets would no have needed to come. The very reason the prophets appear is to proclaim the prolongation of the fulfillment of God's will and to announce the new trend of the dispensation.
QUESTION: 9. How can we come out of the family of Adam when Jesus is a descendant of Adam (Luke 3:38)?
ANSWER: Because of the foundation upon which Jesus was born, which had been prepared for thousands of years of restoration history that manifested through His bloodline. Though, Jesus, technically was connected to Adam through the lineage of Mary, that connection was removed through the condition of Tamar which was bequeathed to Mary's womb. This purification made Mary's womb worthy to receive the invocation of the Holy Spirit through which the Christ was conceived.
QUESTION: 10. Do we assume (when we accept the result of Adam's sin) that we would have acted as Adam did? Isn't it possible that some of us, if we had been placed in Adam's position, would not have partook of the fruit and therefore need not suffer for a sin, given the circumstances, we would not have committed?
ANSWER: It may seem like we are being blamed for the sin of Adam, but in God's heart He doesn't feel that way. What took place at the fall was not just a "sin" on the part of the first human ancestors, but a change of blood lineage. Satan, through the condition of the fall, gained a claim over the descendants of Adam. It is satan who is exerting the claim and accusation to all mankind. The key of God's restoration plan is to eliminate that condition of claim over the lineage on the part of satan. God is working to change back the lineage of mankind. If man had co-operated at the time of Adam, Christ could have come at that time, likewise at the time of Noah, likewise if the Chosen People had fulfilled on faith, Christ would not have to come a second time. All in all, it is human failure that has delayed the ultimate restoration and fulfillment of God's dispensation for the removal of the consequences of sin. That man have responsibility and play a role is the key element in humanity that gives us the potential to be free, loving, creative beings. God wants us to do our part, but if we fail to do and remove our responsibility, we may be less than loving children of God, created in His image.
QUESTION: 11. If Adam and Eve produced only bad children, as you say, how so you explain Hebrews 11:4?
ANSWER: 1Cor. 15:22 states that in Adam was death for All. This of course would include Abel. Abel's righteousness was not the righteousness of sinlessness (and therefore without need for Christ). His "righteousness" was a relative one. Relative to the providence that was taken place in Adam's family after the fall. Though man fell away from God into sin, it did not mean that the God seeking part of man was totally destroyed by satan, if it were so, there would be no hope for the ultimate salvation of sinners. It would also be in contradiction with Paul's declaration that the nature of the mind to seek God, is still active even in the sinner (Romans 7:21).
QUESTION: 12. If Adam and Eve were created in God's image, how is it possible for them to fall?
ANSWER: God gave Adam and Eve responsibility to obey His commandment. He gave the responsibility on order that Adam and Eve could have a moral foundation for their freedom and creativity. This would enable Adam and Eve to stand as beings of love. However, having a real responsibility meant that the potential to fail in that role had to be entailed. Though such a potential was there it was only placed there by God so as to give validity to their responsibility as a real responsibility. It was not placed there in order to be carried out as failure and thus, evil. More on this later, when we study why God did not intervene in the Fall of Man.
QUESTION: 13. You stated that everything that God touches becomes absolute and eternal. Did He not touch Adam? How then was Adam imperfect and absolute and eternal, all at the same time?
ANSWER: God only touched Adam and Eve directly through their principled lawful actions in accord with God's commandment. During the growing period, Adam and Eve's relationship with God would be conditional upon faith and adherence to God's word. To produce this condition would be the responsibility of Adam and Eve. In perfection (or full maturity), Adam and Eve's relationship with God would be unconditional and direct (one and inseparable with God) centering on perfect love.
QUESTION: 14. God created Adam and Eve with a free will. Using the free will Adam sinned. God respected the freedom Adam was endowed with. Why should we then say that God will not become one with an imperfect being?
ANSWER: In our view, Adam's free will was a conditional free will. Adam would maintain freedom if he fulfilled his responsibility to obey God's word. When Adam failed in that responsibility, he in fact lost his freedom and became a slave to sin. Christ comes to restore our freedom and set us free indeed. We keep our freedom on the condition of obeying the word of God. Therefore, God was not "one" with Adam, but instead related to Adam on the condition that Adam remain faithful to God's word.
QUESTION: 15. If Adam and Eve were not created perfect, why did God walk with them in the garden in the cool of the day? (Gen. 3:8). The lecturer stated that God did not have a relationship with imperfect beings.
ANSWER: I did not state that God did not have a relationship with imperfect beings. I said the nature of God's relationship with growing beings is different then His relationship with perfect beings. God could relate to Adam and Eve, but only on the condition of principled truthful action in accordance with the commandment. If Adam and Eve failed to fulfill that condition, they would lose their relationship with God. Thus they could not eat from the Tree of Life. Had they become perfect, it would be impossible for them to sin or to separate from God and that means that their relationship with God would be unconditional and unchanging. This is the meaning of eating from the Tree of Life.
QUESTION: 16. Am I guilty for an act of the first parents? Do I automatically become tainted buy Adam's sin or do I become guilty because I do the same thing my primal parents did?
ANSWER: The original sin is not just a sin, but it was a change of lineage. Man's heritage was changed by the nature of the original sin. The consequences of the original sin passes through the lineage of man. An analogy in a physical sense would be if a heroin addict gives birth to a child, likewise the child will have the addiction. The solution to sin, therefore, is to change our lineage, and thus "rebirth" is the central feature of the salvation plan. Also see 1Cor. 15:22.
QUESTION: 17. You say that we are born in Adam's sin and that we are born as sinners. But Ezekiel 19:32 states that the son shall not bear the iniquity of the father. Basically, I believe that we are born pure and through our own free agency to choose good or evil, sin comes about.
ANSWER: Whether or not the sins of the father is entailed to the children is an issue of Biblical debate. Ex. 20:5, 34:7; Lev. 26:39,40; Num.14:33; Deut. 5:9; Psalms 21:10, 37:28, 109:9,10; Prov. 14:11; Isa 14:20-22, 65:7; Jer. 32:18; Lament. 5:7; Rom. 5:12-21 all indicate that sin is entailed to the children. There are also Bible verses which say that sin is not entailed to the children. But the main point with regard to Adam's sin is that Adam's fall changed our blood lineage and thus all men need to be reborn through the living Adam. We have inherited the nature of sin from Adam. If in fact, all people were born having suffered no consequences from Adam's fall, I'm sure that someone would have avoided sin and the need for salvation. I think 1Cor. 15:22 says it best..."for in Adam all die, so in Christ will all be made alive".
QUESTION: 18. If God's purpose is for us to marry and Jesus is our example to strive for perfection, why did not Jesus marry? Was Jesus out of harmony with His Father's purpose?
ANSWER: It would be wrong for anyone to suggest that Jesus is "out of harmony" with God's Divine Purpose. Jesus Christ is not just our example of perfection, but He is our channel to perfection.
Through Jesus and the Holy Spirit come the regenerative powers of God, without which we are lost. The ideal of the Three Blessings was the original will of God for Adam and Eve. God's will was for them to eat from the Tree of Life (in perfection). They sinned in defiance of God's original will and therefore God began to conduct His will for the salvation of Adam's descendants. It was in the context of this Divine Purpose that Jesus came. Through His atoning work on Calvary and the coming of the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost, the channel for the regeneration of man was set up. Christ returns to establish His Kingdom and give us the right to eat from the Tree of Life. It will be at that time at the completion of the resurrection process, that the institution of the Original Ideal of Marriage will be established. Even though Christ was not married, and even though the ideal of the Kingdom was for His Second Coming, Jesus still taught that the concept of earthly marriage was the will of God in the beginning (Mark 10:5-9).
QUESTION: 19. Jesus drank wine and ate with sinners and publicans. His drinking violated what God said to Moses in Numbers 6:6 which says not to even eat grapes or raisins or even the husk of the rind. Does this make Jesus a sinner and therefore violated everything He stood for?
ANSWER: Numbers 6:6 is referring to the rite of the Nazarite, which was a conditional time of ritual cleansing. It is not declaring an absolute standard. It should not be confused with the fact that Jesus was from Nazareth, there is no relation. Jesus was not under the law, He was the fulfillment of the law, the word made flesh.
QUESTION: 20. If God, in fact, planned on restoring Israel at the time of Jesus, then why does the Bible say that it "pleased" God to bruise Jesus if God was, in fact, not pleased with Jesus having to be killed.
ANSWER: To be "pleased" in the original Hebrew context, does not mean "delighted." Isaiah 53 is indicating that the cross of Jesus as an atoning work will satisfy the requirements for the purging of man's sin.
Again we are not stating that the cross in not the will of God, or that it is not foreshadowed in scripture. We are saying it is not the predetermined will of God. Israel's faith or lack thereof will determine which destiny will be realized. God's primary will is that Israel receive Jesus and establish the Kingdom at that time. In lieu of faith the destiny of the Cross, outlined also in scripture will become the destiny realized, and stands as the will of God.
Jesus remorse at the prospects for the cross are clearly expressed in His prayer in Gethsemane. Jesus, at Calvary, cried out "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?"
QUESTION: 21. Your point that the predictions of Christ's death only took place in the last year of His ministry is based on a non-critical and literal view of the New Testament. The entire thrust of the belief of the New Testament Church was that the mission of Jesus succeeded, as is evident in the Pauline corpus (eg. Col. 1:20, Phil. 12:5-8) and in the Gospels (eg. Luke 2:34, John 1:29), precisely in His death on the cross.
How does Unification Theology respond to this assertion on the part of historic Christianity? ANSWER: We do not reject principles of higher criticism, however, in this particular setting, as I'm sure you can understand, the ground rules for communication are not being set by me, but by the perspective of the majority of ministers in attendance. Let me say, that I think it to be entirely reasonable that the first Century of Christianity would focus on articulating the meaning and the historical context of Jesus death. The reason the Divine Principle revelation has come now is because the original potential for the Kingdom is again historically at hand and it is equally reasonable that it's emphasize would be focussed on the reasons the Kingdom could not come at the time of Jesus and what were the failures that led to that sorrowful result. As far as the Gospels are concerned (and Jewish history) we have a much clearer window with regard to a higher unfulfilled destiny being apparent. Luke 2:34 does not strike me as an emphatic declaration of the cross, nor does John's declaration of Jesus as the Lamb signify necessarily that He must shed His blood anymore than it means we must shed our blood because Jesus referred to His believers as "His lambs" in John 21:15 ( Lamb is a symbol of humility and obedience, not necessarily a blood offering). Though I agree that the Gospels are not written as an exact history, still they testify to a clear turning point in the ministry of Jesus from which time He began to teach and predict His death (Matt. 16:21). This prediction shocked and surprised the apostles, indicating the newness, and suddenness of His teaching.
QUESTION: 22. Explain how restored Adam equals Jesus and restored Eve equals the Holy Spirit. Give scripture.
ANSWER: Jesus is referred to as the "Living Adam" in 1Cor. 15:22. The Holy Spirit is sent by Jesus and is in the object position to Jesus, just as the church is in the object position to Jesus and is referred to as "bride" of Christ. Through Jesus and the Holy Spirit is accomplished "rebirth". The cumulative effect of Jesus and the Holy Spirit is that of parents, and thus, Jesus as the "everlasting Father" and the Holy Spirit in the role of the Bride or restorative "Mother" fulfill the rebirth of man.
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