The Words of the Porter Family
Our Life In The Dispensation
January 25, 2004
When I heard the Divine Principle the first time, as I came from a Christian background, I saw it in terms of Jesus promise given in Johnís gospel 16:25
"I have spoken of these matters in parables, but the time will come when this will not be necessary, and I will tell you plainly all about the Father."
Further, due to the many spiritual experiences that I, and others, had, the direction of life became all so clear. As some of the early Christians from Jesus time appeared in spirit, I thought at then that in a brief period everyone in the world would respond, and the Kingdom of Heaven would be substantially manifested.
As you all know very well, the Divine Principle does not only resolve the theological questions of the past, but it also clearly indicates something new, the Providential history up to 1960, and coupled with True Fatherís speeches, one can clearly trace the Providential History to the present time and into the future.
If we were to explain the focus of the Family Federation today, or the unique contributions of our church community, we could say many, many things, but basically, in relationship to other religious faiths and practices, our emphasis is on the Providential moment of Godís Will. By this we mean that a certain person chosen by God has to restore, and or establish certain events in a certain dispensational moment: that is in a certain time period: 7 year course, 21 year course, 40 year course, and so on. This is a simple, but most profound, understanding.
As Unificationists, we are of the view that God works through dispensations, and His Will is not only over-all, but, specific to the moment in which we are living. Consequently, our mandate as brothers and sisters is to both support the work of the True Parents, as well as realizing the substance of it in our own personal lives, in our family life, in our clans, and onwards. But primarily, we are interested in both Time Identity and the collective thought or conditions that will affect a certain outcome. Truly True Father is certainly a master of knowing what has to be realized in what moment, and mobilizes brothers and sisters accordingly.
To substantiate the Providential Will, we all agree that God throughout history has sought first the restoration of one Adam, and then one Eve in order to recover a central blessed family who would model the restoration of the Ideal of Creation. Then, following this pattern the True Parents have allowed us to realize this same ideal of creation as blessed central families, and owners of Cheon Il Guk.
As we see it, the number one goal of Providential History since the time of Jesus, has been the preparation for the appearance of the Lord of the Second Advent who would not only fulfill completely the course of restoration, but complete the prophecies of the last chapter of the Bible as well.
While all of Christendom has included the theme of the return of Christ in their theologies, some denominations have grown away from this point in order to focus on salvation, and spiritual growth in the present moment. Others promote the Providential Will in various ways, from preparation for the rapture, to predictions of the Second Coming as a phenomena at the end time, the last gesture from Heaven, if you like it, before the final Judgment. Some churches have still other focuses.
Through the study of Divine Principle, we Unificationists, feel that God has called us to participate in the special Time Identity of the Second Advent, through the Life and Ministry of Sun Myung Moon and Ha Cha Han Moon.
From this pivotal point, our life of faith has served to support Godís over-all Providential Will, and todayís Dispensation, by following the continued directives of the True Parents. For the past years, our mission has been to make conditions for the way of Godís will to be realized. That is helping people to recognize that our essential nature is to love for the sake of others. This is the purpose for which we have been working on through all events, financial contributions, &, peace initiatives while nurturing the participation of leaders in all fields of human endeavor.
All these efforts often require all that we have within us at the moment, and sometimes even more. To reach the mark, we believe that at a certain point people need to recognize the central couple of the Providence, and learn how God is using the True Parents to establish the turning points in Providential History.
From my experience with Christian churches, people seem to mainly view their religious life as a mandate to become Christ-like. This in itself is good. The same mandate has been given in different ways in other religions. However, I also found that some churches do not believe in, or consider a continuing providence. These churches, particularly the Bible based churches, do not consider what Jesus might be doing today. Their position is that everything has already been written. Everything is in the Book. Further, they bolster their beliefs by referring to Revelations 22:18 which states that:
"If anyone adds anything to what is written here, God will add to that person the plagues described in this book. And if anyone removes any of the words of this prophetic book, God will remove that personís share in the tree of life and in the holy city that are described in this book."
Is the Bible one book? No, it is a collection of books: 39 Books in the Old Testament, and 27 books in the New Testament: a total of 66 books in all.
So, if you still think that this is one book, then for you what Revelations 22: 18 states is a very heavy judgment and even more judgment for all of those who accept that the meaning of the scripture refers to the finality of Godís word as set down in the Old & New Testament.
I have found by experience that most Christians believe what has happened in history was supposed to have happened in that way. This point of view originates from the supposition that as God is in control of events, history must have progressed according to His predestined will. Then the Christian explanation of the many dual prophecies written in the bible (Isaiah 24:3 "the earth will be completely emptied and looted." & Isaiah 35:6-7, "Streams in the desert" Isaiah 53:3 "He was despised and rejected." & Isaiah 60:1-7, "The glory of the lord is shining upon you." The equally there are countless times in the Old Testament when God speaks directly educating his children on the benefits of realizing his will and the dire consequences of ignoring his will. 2 Chronicles 7:14 if you do, I will hear, so if you do not, I will not hear), see Jeremiah 31:33-34, and Ezekiel 18:21-23 and many others. Christian churches generally explain that these prophecies will take place as stated if not at Jesus time, then at the time of his second coming.
From my understanding, it wasnít until the teaching of Divine Principle, that the forces of influence on events were viewed not only as the will and power of God, but also the power of human will and involvement. Consider as a counterpart to this statement the basic Christian theology of predestination, which speaks amply about the almighty power of God, and not manís response to it, nor his participation in it.
So, reading ancient prophecy and even the more recent prophecies of our time and future times, may be informative and can be confirming; But the True Parents are continually showing us that we also need to remember that the outcome does not have to be as predicted. Much depends on human input. True Father clearly teaches that God is not responsible to restore this world, but the messiah opens the way and then we, as his sons and daughters, follow that path.
I find it interesting that a recent development of thought in quantum physics supports precisely that there can be multiple outcomes. So, quantum physics brings new credibility to the role of dual prophecy and the power of influence on events through mass prayer, and making conditions for restoration in other ways. Our time will be even more interesting as modern science continues to validate the relationship between our outer and inner world, the physical world and the spiritual world.
I was struck by one confirmation of prophecy though which I experienced during our recent trip to Israel. For those of you who have been to Israel, even if you traveled on the winding road from Jerusalem down 1,300m to the Dead Sea in an air-conditioned bus rather than on a donkey like people did in ancient times, you will remember how at Jerusalem, which is on the edge of the Negev desert, and there were plants, trees and vegetation, but soon this vegetation gradually diminished as the desert had taken over everything.
Then, you will remember on the plain at the Dead Sea one noted the fulfillment of Isaiahís prophecy; "Streams will burst forth in the desert, and rivers in the steppe. The burning sands will become pools and the thirsty ground, springs of water." (Isaiah 35:6-7). Israeli ingenuity at work.
True Father is a man who understands the Providential moment and is leading the way in making conditions for the liberation of the past, as well as realizing what needs to be done to realize Cheon Il Guk or the Heavenly kingdom of God. He responds to, or even anticipates the Will and goes where God is going.
You may remember some years back that True Father said that the unification of Germany, East and West would come first. Remember also the conditions made amongst others by CARP in Europe and more specifically Hyo Jin Nimís passionate prayer at the Berlin Wall. Then, after the unification of Germany, True Father stated that the next stage would be the unification of Korea, North and South.
How do we interpret the events of September 11, 2001? This seemed to me to be a surprising event; an anomaly. True Father realized without doubt that the Arab world problem had to be resolved as it was a barrier to world peace. The problem of Haggar and Ishmaelís resentment: The disunity in Abrahamís family. A situation that could fester unresolved if left alone and easily plunge mankind into a hot war. True Fatherís response became particularly evident from March 2003 onwards with the activities of taking down the cross in Christian churches: the cross for many non Christians had become a symbol of oppression, and the pilgrimages to the Holy land and Jerusalem.
In the view that God works through providential periods, Father has also illuminated a pattern of restoration in scripture showing that Godís will is first realized symbolically, then in image, and finally in substantial reality.
For example, the Jews pray to the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Abraham made symbolic offerings of birds and animals for the foundation of Faith, Isaacís offering was the image offering of the foundation of Faith, and Jacobís life became the substantial foundation of Faith.
Through our work with the True Parents we can recognize the evidence of this process on all levels. What we do as individuals and collectively with the True Parents has great significance. I believe that everybody needs to have their own personal experience to understand the value and importance of making conditions.
In my case, some years ago I had the privilege of working in Canada, and True Father suggested after I had given him a report that I should go on a nationwide speaking tour. At the time we had upwards to 251 negative articles in the press each month. We couldnít alter the growing distorted image except by making some kind of conditional offering with prayer for Godís intervention over-all. Only about 30 Canadian brothers and sisters and I went on a speaking tour with a three camera slide show edifying the spiritual milestones as we saw it in the history and providence of Canada and Godís will. We spoke out boldly about who we were, and what we stood for. The outcome was that the spiritual atmosphere began to change, and walls began to come down. We became tolerated in some areas and accepted in others. That was a miracle for us, but we also realized that this could not have been accomplished by 30 people alone. God and the True Parents had intervened.
Another example of making conditions which is deeply embedded in my mind and so I will never forget was the conference held in Geneva, Switzerland, back in 1985 titled, "The End of Communism and what next." The participating professors present needed so much encouragement as at the time they could not see the end of communism, and consequently they thought that they could not have a serious academic conference discussing "what next." History now records that the True Parents had made the conditions for it, and once that had been declared, the outcome was certain.
In regards to the recent conditions for peace made in Israel: A skeptic might say that some of us had a pleasant vacation, December 16-22. It was a pleasant vacation in many ways and much, much more. True Father declared January 3, 2004: "With the ceremony of the Coronation of Jesus all the historical entanglements are dissolved. Jesus is free to work as King of Kings as he should have been able to do 2000 years ago. Now Jesus will not only stand as the King of Israel, but also as the spiritual King of the Second Israel. Now Jesus has the power to unify all Christian denominations, Catholic and Protestant.
The first Israel (Israel), the second Israel (Christianity) and third Israel (America) will become one nation because it includes people who are Moslems, Christians, Jews and all faiths. The Abel United Nations centering on the third Israel will bring peace on earth. The I.I.P.C. was formed as the Abel U.N. The Old Testament Age has passed through the coronation of Jesus. Then through the second Israel the New Testament Age will be restored. Following this, the Completed Testament Age will be restored through the rallies to crown Jesus in the Fatherland. Then the fourth Israel will become united. Then finally, the substantial Cheon Il Guk through the fourth Israel will be fully realized.
Through the Cheon Il Guk Blessing we will expand the blessing and the change of blood lineage to all people. The perfection of the fourth Israel will be based on the unity of the 1st, 2nd and 3rd Israel. This will create a new realm ending the conflict of Cain and Abel, and will reconcile them. This will be the era of the Peace Kingdom. All the pain and suffering of the heart of God will be ended." (TP 1/3/2004)
Can you believe this? I can believe this.
For me the trip to Israel is difficult to put in words. Words do not easily express the feelings. I had not been to Israel in over 32 years. I went the first time to help our missionary that some of you must know, Gary Fleisher, and was able to take him a vehicle as a gift from the Italian brothers and sisters.
In this trip last December the situation was very different. I wanted to feel the spiritual conflicts directly, understanding the conflicts through the eyes of the people I was able to meet. I attempted to meet as many people as I could. I wanted to meet a large as possible cross section of the population, representing the diversity in the population: the liberal Jews, Israeli Arabs, the conservative Jews, the Palestinians, and even military intelligence. I also went, like many of you, on some well-organized tourist trips to many important, historic sites. The first day I was in Jerusalem; the mount of Olives, the Garden of Gethsemane, the Upper Room, the Tomb of King David, Absolomís Tomb; and then to Bethlehem, the Church of the Nativity, Manger Square, and even to have lunch in a restaurant that had been closed since the beginning of the 2nd Intefada (3 years prior). One could not help but see the great difference in the level of life between the Jewish and the Palestinian areas.
I spoke with the leader of the Church of the Nativity, who being a Palestinian and as such was not able to easily get a permit to come to our rally on December 22. Not even a bishop of a most important Church is able to go to Jerusalem because he is a Palestinian!
Generally speaking the Palestinian people I met were very polite and wanted me to understand their situation, which, quite honestly, is pitiful. But at the same time one could not help but read the graphite in large black letters on a wall near Manger Square exhorting people to kill Israelis. These writings were accompanied with pictures of the suicide bombers. The common people I feel long for peace, the ability to work, to feed their families, and experience development. But I observed that they are caught between a very small minority of people that keep the pot of resentment and violence simmering on the one side, and the limited access to Israel and the possibility of employment caused by the continuing violence on the other side.
In the following days, I went to the Dead Sea, Nazareth, Cana, the Lake of Galilee, the place where the Sermon on the Mount was given, the Jordan River, which is large in our hearts but so narrow (30 yards) in reality. All of these trips were highlights and a time for reflection and prayer: A time to commune with the basics of faith. All these experiences were a prelude to a great climax and conclusion, December 22.
The day started early with a walk from the Zion gate through the old wall of Jerusalem along many narrow streets, past the security officers that just parted to let us pass by on towards the Al Aqsa Mosque, the 3rd most important shrine in Islam, and the Dome on the Rock on Mount Moriah, where Mohammad was supposed to have ascended up to heaven, and where Abraham made the sacrifice of Isaac.
I know you have heard it reports of this before, but it was here that a most improbable meeting took place. Present were Jewish Rabbis repenting for themselves as well as for the actions of their faith in relating to their brother Muslims. Present were Imamís repenting for their attitudes and the actions of their faith against both Jews and Christians. Present were Christian leaderís repenting for the actions of their faith against both Jews and Muslims. Truly this was a deep heartfelt, tear-filled time of reconciliation. The sons of Abraham truly came together in this hallowed ground and were united. This important act was just the beginning.
After a photo opportunity, we continued through more narrow streets lined with stalls, through a further checkpoint, and on to the Wailing Wall, the last remnants of the 2nd Temple. A similar moment of reconciliation of Abrahamís children was experienced.
Later that day we all assembled at a central park in Jerusalem for a rally. I was able to sit in the center section with many other ministers and invited guests. The music was entertaining, the speeches were profound but the highlight for me personally was the Coronation of Jesus as King.
To recap a little, I had been informed the day before in the hotel to put on a suit and be ready for the Coronation at the Hotel the evening of December 21. I was so upset when I heard this. I knew that this was wrong. Jesus, a public figure, could not be crowned in a room of the Renaissance Hotel. Later, after I had changed and prepared myself, I was so relieved to hear that the plan had been cancelled. Jesus was to be crowned at the rally, in the public where he always lived, walked and talked.
At a certain point in the Rally, two chairs were put on stage for Jesus and his bride. Then, when I saw the crown I had a profound spiritual experience. I felt the deep, deep relief of heaven that this moment, the moment of Jesus coronation, had finally come, even if 2000 years later. Then I saw Jesus who was so happy about the event. Tears of joy flowed like a river. In that moment we all witnessed the prophetic declaration in Revelations, that we are living in a time of: "And I saw a new heaven and a new earthÖ I heard a voice saying there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, for the former things have passed away."
Brothers and sisters we are living in incredible times. The new history is being written day by day. As a community of believers, let us continue to join the True Parents in making condition to manifest the un-manifest, finish the course, and realize the dream.
Peace will come and will become evident as more and more individuals realize peace within themselves, then within their families, in societal relationships, and so on. Peace is elusive now but not necessarily always.
In conclusion, may God empower us all to unleash our intentions, gifts, and love to the benefit of all those around us for the purpose of building His Kingdom in our time. Working together with God our lives have value: We as people are also valuable. This is the time of harvest.
Thank you for your attention. Let us pray.
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