The Words of the Yong Family
Welcome brothers and sisters to our Christmas celebration. Let's be honest, how many of you ever thought that you would hear Jingle Bell Rock sung at a church service? We have two hands I see and I'm not even sure whether I believe you! Last Tuesday I went to see the program director and I asked, "Could we have one Christmas song today?" and she said, "Well, how about five?" I thought, "Wow!" So we have five Christmas songs today! So I was quite surprised. And you noticed? What else is new today? We have a live band! Did you notice that? Let's give a [round of applause]. Pretty nice! They may be in danger because they come here once… (but) I think we may want them every Saturday.
I really want to welcome all of you and of course this is our last service before Christmas, and last week our senior pastor spoke a lot about Jesus. And of course, we can say Jesus is in the air at this time of year. And I'd like to read a passage taken from a speech given by our True Father whom we know as Reverend Sun Myung Moon. We refer to him as True Father in our movement, in our church. And I'd like for you to read along with me. This is taken from a speech given back in 1979 (on December 25), The True Meaning Of Christmas.
So please read with me:
"Why do we need Jesus? Why do we need the Messiah? The important thing is to know that we are born into a satanic lineage of hereditary sin based on satanic love. We need a Messiah because we want to have God-centered love, and only the Messiah can give us that love. Jesus needed to eat and sleep like everyone else, but Jesus led a life that God could rejoice over; that was the difference"
"We need Jesus in order to learn his way of life, so that we can inherit the tradition of unstained heavenly love. In order to do that we have to follow his way of life, obeying his instructions."
"Could Jesus completely exemplify the heavenly tradition if he were a bachelor? Because Jesus was always a bachelor we have not seen any other tradition, but that was only the first step of Jesus' contribution. He was to have given the world not only a tradition of individual perfection, but also the tradition of love between husband and wife. As a God-centered man he wanted to show how men should live. As a husband he was to show how to be a model God-centered husband. Does the Bible teach this? Have you ever read in the Bible how Jesus loved his wife?"
"Would God call Jesus a heretic for thinking that he should marry? Christianity does not have the tradition of a husband's love for his wife. Furthermore, Jesus wanted not only to love his wife but to teach her how to set the tradition of wifehood. Does the Bible record that tradition?"
"Is there any record of Jesus becoming a father who could teach people the right way to love their children? Is there any indication that Jesus became a grandfather who could show how grandchildren should be loved?"
Perhaps many here have never heard anything like this, let alone thought something like this. Yet in our tradition we are most blessed to have a profound understanding of God's son Jesus Christ who came approximately two thousand years ago to bring about God's ideal on the earth, to bring His heart, His love, His truth. And yet we know that tragically his life was cut very short, living only thirty-three years. So much more he wanted to share with us. We know there are passages in the Bible where Jesus said, "There is so much I have yet to convey but you are not yet ready." How much he wanted to give us his heart, his love, his truth, not just -- as we read -- as an individual but, amazingly, as a husband, as a father, as a grandfather. Can you imagine in your mind Jesus being a grandfather, think about Jesus being your grandfather? We know that in the Jewish tradition family is key, is so central, and that is in many ways very similar to the Korean tradition.
So, as many people in the world today are celebrating Jesus' birth, or will be this coming week, we also want to keep in mind the hope that Jesus had, the heart that he wanted to convey to us. We are blessed to know him. We are blessed to know him in a very special way because of what our True Parents have taught us and have brought us. Today during the service we'll be hearing more about the sacrifice that Jesus made and also the sacrifice that our True Parents have made. So I'd like to ask you to keep that in mind during our service, and keep it in mind in the week ahead: what Jesus wanted to bring to us, what Jesus still wants to bring to us. And with that, I'd like to ask you to join me in our family pledge.
Well, I always love the tradition that our senior pastor had for us, in a bit of humor before our sermon. How about you, do you like the humor? (Yes!) You know, we did a little poll -- and we were told Hyung Jin Nim thought that maybe members didn't like it (the interesting story). So we did a little survey and it was like, ninety-eight percent liked the humor. So, I have a little interesting story -- maybe, hopefully -- for you. And this is about a minister who, around Christmas time, had all the remaining teeth pulled, so he had to get dentures. Can we see that slide? There we go! For those of you who are not so familiar, those are what we call dentures and you notice there the top part we might call the gums. The first Sunday after the minister received his new dentures he preached for ten minutes. The second Sunday he preached for only twenty minutes, but on the third Sunday he preached for 1 hour 25 minutes. Now, the congregation was somewhat confused and they asked, "Well, Minister, why?" And he said, "Well, on the first Sunday, my gums were so sore, it hurt to talk, so I only talked for 10 minutes. The second Sunday, my dentures were hurting a lot so I spoke for twenty minutes. But on the third Sunday, I accidentally used my wife's dentures and I couldn't stop talking!"
As you may have noticed, our senior pastor is not here today. He actually is in Taiwan holding a Blessing ceremony, officiating at it. But we are very blessed today to have a very special speaker, and this very special person by the name of Rev. Jin Hung Yong has lived twenty-four years of a public life in our movement. For ten years he worked in the Unification Church history-compilation committee. Nine years, he worked as a minister, and for the last two years he's been leading the Department for Education and Witnessing at the Hyup-Hae and here at the headquarters church. In his spare time he's working on a doctorate in education. So I'd like for you to join me in welcoming our special speaker today, Rev Jin Hung Yong.
Good afternoon. I am very happy to have the opportunity to speak to you all today.
It reminds me of the times we had service together at Heuk Sok-dong with Rev. Kyle Toffey and with Rev. Brazil. We used to have our English service over there at Heuk Sok-dong. Let's read together from the Divine Principle (p.137):
"The changes a person experiences when he is resurrected and enters the governance of God take place in his heart and spirit. These internal changes also purify his body, transforming it from a haunt of Satan to a temple of God."
Now, from the Bible (Romans 8:6):
"The mind of sinful man is death, but the mind controlled by the Spirit is life and peace."
Today I'd like to share with you some of the meaning behind True Parents' seven deaths and resurrections. I really feel I must share this information with everyone at the headquarters' church and our members around the world.
Hyung Jin Nim talks a lot about the seven deaths and resurrections but he hasn't had a lot of time to explain the details of it to us. So, first we'll start by talking about who is Rev. Moon who has experienced these seven deaths and resurrections.
We know what resurrection means, right? It means salvation. We've heard about resurrection a lot in the Divine Principle. From our point of view, it means being saved from a fallen state. From the point of view of the Messiah, resurrection means restoring God's will. So True Parents have described resurrection as a process by which today we are closer to God than yesterday and each day we are improving. As a Messiah, to accomplish resurrection is an extremely meaningful accomplishment.
We were created by God but then, because of the Fall, we fell away from God. So for us, returning back to God's direct dominion, that is resurrection. Jesus came in order to recreate mankind back into the state of being in God's direct dominion. But Jesus was not able to accomplish that completely because he went the way of the cross. He did manage to accomplish the spiritual resurrection but the physical body remained in the realm of Satan. So Jesus died once, was resurrected once, spiritually. And forty days after, he reappeared to mankind and was able to establish a very huge Christian church foundation based on that one resurrection.
In comparison, True Parents have undergone seven resurrections. True Parents have faced death seven times and been resurrected seven times, not only spiritually, but spiritually and physically. This means that True Parents have an extremely huge gift to give to mankind because of the victory of those resurrections. That's the grace of the seven deaths and resurrections.
So, let's look at the meaning of Jesus' resurrection. Before his death, Jesus was described as a Messiah to the Jewish people. In Matthew, he is described as one who goes beyond the rules and breaks the rules (Matt. 12:10). They described him as a colleague of Beelzebub, the prince of demons (Matt. 12:22) [actually Matt 12:24], and he is described as the one who brings the sword to separate and judge the nation of Israel (Matt. 10:34).
He came to save mankind but he was crucified. After three days following his death, he was resurrected and from that time his appearance was entirely different from before his death. For example, St. Paul who tried very hard to kill Jesus during his lifetime, was transformed after Jesus' resurrection and came to follow Jesus. Because he thought Jesus was dead and then Jesus appeared to him, he was transformed and began to lead Jesus' followers. From that time on, he listened to every word that Jesus said and he began to be Jesus' most faithful follower.
This put the nation of Israel in a position relating to the Roman Empire. Originally Jesus was in the nation of Israel, but after the resurrection, the Christian church [was] established in the Roman Empire, so Rome became the religious center. The disciples began to preach that Jesus has reappeared, Jesus has resurrected. They traveled all over the place and the Christian church began.
If we look at Jesus before the resurrection and after the resurrection, we see a completely different picture. After Jesus' resurrection the providence to really save mankind throughout the world began. So the fact that the Messiah was resurrected held great meaning for all of mankind. True Parents have gone a course of seven deaths and resurrections and completing the eight stages. So, in a sense, we have to die to really become the true son of God.
The eight stages start from the bottom: servant of servants. Because mankind fell, they ended up in the position of servant of servants, even below the position of angels who were kind of like servants. So first they had to be resurrected up to the level of servants, and on up through the levels of adopted child, step child, children, mother and father, finally able to enter God's eternal kingdom. These are the vertical eight stages. These are the eight stages all fallen men have to go through to be victorious.
True Parents have also discussed that we need to go through eight stages of horizontal [resurrection]. We have to accomplish victories at the individual, family, tribal, race, nation, world, cosmic levels. Only if we accomplish these eight vertical and eight horizontal stages, can we escape from the realm of Satan and become God's kingdom.
If you look at the chart starting from the bottom, True Parents have accomplished all seven levels of resurrection going to the eighth stage. Through Father's work, he has gone through all the stages from servant of servant going all the way up to father, and the horizontal stages starting from the individual, family, race and so on. So the fact that Father has been able to go through the seven deaths and resurrections and complete all of these stages to get up to the eighth stage, it proves that he is the Messiah.
The first resurrection was in the prison at Gyeonggi do. Father was imprisoned in October 1944. He was imprisoned for about 4 months until February 1945. He was in the position of servant of servants. When he was in Japan studying, just prior to this, he had been participating in independence movement activities. Like all of Korea, under the rule of Japan for 40 years, Father had been in the position of servant of servants. So he came back to Korea and his name was on the list of people who had participated in independence activities in Japan. This is what got him in trouble the first time. The government ordered a list of people who had been doing independence activities, and his name appeared on that list. He was subjected to seven kinds of torture while he was in prison during that time in Gyeonggi do, so he shed blood and suffered. It was severe suffering.
Even while he was being beaten, he did not come to hate the guards who were beating him. "Later on when I get out of this prison, and this person comes to understand who I am, I need to have him not hate me, and I not hate him," he thought. "Actually he is also the son of God." More than about the pain and suffering that Father was going through, he was concerned about how to save the guard who was inflicting the pain on him.
The second death and resurrection was at the Jeongju police station in North Korea. He was imprisoned for about a week during October of 1945. This was right after the World War was finished and Korea was getting out from the rule of Japan. Father at that point decided to go a public course and cut off from his physical family, from his parents and his brothers. The reason he got in trouble this time, externally, was because he had brought South Korean money to North Korea and was using it, so he looked suspicious. So we have to feel that this money represented not just money but the people of Korea, because Korean people had been divided into south and north. So he had democratic money and he was using it in the communist north, and he got in trouble. So we have Korea, the nation chosen by God, but it was divided into democratic and communist parts and Father at that time began his public mission. Father said, "From a normal point of view, this looks very severe and harsh, but in order to take the course of the Messiah, it's necessary to separate from my family. This is the path the Messiah must take."
The third time Father was imprisoned was by the internal security forces in 1946, from August 11 until November 21. There was a person in the John the Baptist position, Baek Moon Kim. This person had a huge church (Israel Monastery), a huge following, that God had prepared to meet Father, but this minister was not able to proclaim Father as the Messiah. He should have attended Father as the Messiah and brought all his followers to Father but he did not. There were other religious leaders that were also prepared to meet Father at that time. Some of them did admit that he was the Messiah. They said he was the Messiah but they didn't follow him and they didn't help him.
If we look at the course of events that Father went through in North Korea up until about 1960, we can see that it parallels Jesus' course very closely. Rev. Baek Moon Kim was so surprised to hear that the Messiah was there. In the case of Jesus, John the Baptist was not able to proclaim Jesus as the Messiah and bring his followers to Jesus. And the disciples also, their faith wavered because of John the Baptist's actions. Because of that, Jesus had to go to a new place, to Jerusalem, to try to find new, stronger disciples. He did not find highly trained religious people as he should have had. He found people -- fishermen, prostitutes, tax collectors -- twelve, who were willing to follow him.
He should have had the twelve top leaders from the Jewish church as his twelve disciples. So, he had to take a much more sorrowful course with twelve people who were really not very qualified to be his disciples, and we know that finally one of those twelve people betrayed him in the end. Because Judas betrayed him to the authorities in the end, Jesus ended up going to the cross. The authorities, Pontius Pilate, who was in charge of the case, knew that Jesus had no sin and he said, "I cannot punish this man." So he let the Jewish people choose and they sent Jesus to the cross. And as we said before, three days after his death, Jesus resurrected, and for forty days as a spiritual person he re-collected twelve faithful disciples.
True Parents have followed the course of restoring the course that Jesus went. Baek Moon Kim should have followed True Father after receiving the revelation, and collected twelve disciples together, but he did not follow True Father and Father did not get the twelve disciples at that time. So again, there were twelve religious leaders prepared to follow Father but because of the lack of faith of their leader, Baek Moon Kim, they did not follow him and he went to North Korea and found a secondary group of disciples: In Ju Kim, Won Pil Kim, Dal Ok Jung and others. And some of those who were not following him betrayed him to the authorities, which led to him being imprisoned. Finally the security police also realized that he was not guilty. He was innocent. But then he was arrested again, suspected of being a spy, and sent to Hungnam labor camp.
Hungnam was not a regular prison. It was a place where they basically worked people until they died. So even in that place, where basically the purpose of it was to kill people, Father managed to find twelve disciples, inside there. Jesus found his twelve disciples when he was present in spirit after the resurrection, but Father found twelve disciples in spirit and physical body. So there in Hungnam prison, Father passed the tribal and racial level of restoration.
And as you've heard before, during the Korean War, UN forces liberated the prisoners at Hungnam prison and, in that way, Father's life was spared. After escaping from Hungnam, Father said this:
"After being tortured and returning to my dark cell in the moonless night, I cleaned my wounds and offered my appreciation to heaven. I could not cry for myself. I could only cry for Heavenly Father who has shed His blood and tears for mankind."
Even though he was undergoing tremendous suffering, he could not express that suffering because he did not want to make God any more sorrowful than He already was. He came to know a lot about Heavenly Father's heart while he was in Hungnam.
After Hungnam, Father was imprisoned again in Seodaemun prison in 1955. From July 4 until October 4, he was held in the Seodaemun prison. The reason he was imprisoned this time was because there was a big flack raised about many students from Yonsei and Ehwa Universities who were following him, and therefore got expelled from school. This was shortly after the Korean War finished and Ehwa and Yonsei Universities were both missionary schools, made by American missionaries in Korea -- very strong Christians.
The whole country was very poor, in a poor state at the end of the war. When Father was speaking many people were listening to what he said. There were 800 students in the dormitories at the colleges and they all were moved by what Father was saying. These 800 students started coming regularly to hear Father speak. At the Christian university (Ehwa), the president of the university, President Kim, was very perplexed at what kind of religion could draw 800 of his students. He sent some professors to go find out what kind of place it was.
There were six [professors sent]. Yun Yong Yang was one of the professors. She was also very moved by what Father had to say. She said "This is not a regular message. This is from God. Now I understand why our students are going to the Unification Church." She told the president of the college, "All of us need to go this way -- follow the Unification Church." The president of the college was worried that if the whole Korean country became Unificationist, they wouldn't receive any support from Christian United States any more.
He sent some more of his best professors -- Chung Hwa Han, Won Bok Choi, Jung Ho Lee. Every one of them came back to him and said, "You need to believe what this man is teaching." He took out his last hidden card. He had a professor whom he had raised as his student and then who had studied in America and had come back -- Young Oon Kim. He sent this professor to hear Father.
At this time, Young Oon Kim was being raised to be the next president of the university. She had major stomach problems at that time and her health was not very good. So Young Oon Kim also went to hear what Father was saying but she did not go inside the church; she listened through the open window. All morning she listened and she was also very moved. She stayed and listened through the afternoon and her mind began to change. She stayed and listened for three days and she was convinced that this was the word of God. She joined the church.
The president of the university was very distressed. He fired the six professors who had become members of the church and kicked out seventeen students who had joined the church. These six professors and seventeen students became very loyal followers of True Parents. They helped start with Father the Saemaul movement (movement to restore the race). The Saemaul movement was very instrumental in President Pak's time. President Pak was very impressed by the Saemaul movement and that's why he gave the land where we built the Little Angels theater and school.
The sixth resurrection was when Father was held in Danbury from July 20, 1984 until July 4 of the following year. As you probably all know, [for] the imprisonment of Father in Danbury prison the excuse was some unpaid taxes, but really it was just that they wanted to put Father in prison. The Fraser committee members had a very communist attitude and they didn't like Father's highly religious work. While Father was in prison in Danbury, we started a coalition of Christian ministers that grew to include 7000 Christian ministers. And the True Children and True Mother began a very devotional life while Father was in prison.
So, when Father came out from Danbury, it was a very victorious resurrection. Seven thousand American clergy also visited Korea at that time as the holy land of True Parents. And in the period just after Father came out of Danbury, communism was finished. Father met with Kim Il Sung, he met with Gorbachev. You have to consider that this was a world level victory because the United States had put Father in prison and the United States is a world level power.
You all heard about the seventh resurrection last year: the helicopter accident. Yeong Ho Kim, a movie director, was out fishing in the area and he saw a vision. He saw a rainbow and hordes of people in white clothes surrounding the helicopter. There was also a famous actor with him, Sang Soon Kim. They didn't know if this was a dream or something real when they saw it. When they got home and turned on the news, they realized that what they had seen was Rev. Moon's helicopter accident. And after that, they were convinced that Father was the Messiah and they joined the church.
This helicopter accident was not just a miracle; it was a sign from God to show, "This is my son, this is the Messiah." Jesus' crucifixion was handing over his physical and spiritual body to Satan. Finally he was resurrected only spiritually, but his physical being was not resurrected. But True Parents have been resurrected both physically and spiritually through these seven resurrections.
If we compare Jesus' resurrection and Father's resurrection, True Parents were substantially resurrected. Jesus shed blood on the cross. True Parents were resurrected without shedding blood. Jesus died alone and had to go and re-gather his disciples when he was in spiritual form. True Parents were not alone. They had their followers with them in the helicopter and their followers saved them. Jesus had to witness to himself as the Messiah after his resurrection. But there were many, many people to witness to True Parents as the Messiah. They did not have to do it themselves.
Let's look at Jesus before and after the resurrection. Before the resurrection, Jesus was more interested in the external world. After the resurrection, there was the Pentecost, and the spiritual experiences began. He gathered his disciples again. Instead of centering on himself, his words centered on heaven. Before the resurrection, he had habits that kept him from being absolute in his faith but after the resurrection, his faith became absolute. Before the resurrection, people were not sure he was the Messiah, but after it became very clear that he was the Messiah. Only after the resurrection people were convinced he was the Messiah and had spiritual experiences and followed him.
The Pentecost, following the resurrection, was the most active period for his disciples. He was just there spiritually but it (his disciples) became very active. This very tiny religion that had started in Jerusalem became huge, through Rome spread to the entire world. Through this one resurrection, Jesus was able to accomplish a worldwide foundation.
Imagine now, True Parents have been resurrected seven times, physically and spiritually. So at this time, we need to believe in True Parents and lead a clean and holy life. We need to become one with True Parents. We need to live for others. We have to throw away all our old habits and become a model family following True Parents. We are the people who should be following those eight stages of resurrection. We need to clean ourselves internally and join with True Parents. Now is the time we have to understand our position. Now you know that you, too, can be resurrected through True Parents' resurrections. This is what I wanted to share with you today. Thank you.
According to God's Word, Adam and Eve died when they ate of the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Nevertheless, no significant external change took place in them. At most there were momentary changes in their countenances due to the anxiety and fear they felt over having fallen. Likewise, no significant external changes should be expected to take place in fallen people when they are resurrected to the state prior to the Fall. One who has been reborn through the Holy Spirit surely has experienced resurrection. Compare such a faithful person to a robber: One has been resurrected to the level of being reborn into God's realm, while the other is a spiritually dead person destined for hell. Yet the two people cannot be distinguished by their external appearance. One who believes in God according to Jesus' teaching is indeed resurrected from death to life. However, one cannot discern any obvious change in his physical body before and after he received Jesus and gained life through resurrection.
Jesus was truly a man who fulfilled the purpose of creation. Nevertheless, judged by his outward appearance, Jesus was not noticeably different from ordinary people. If he had unmistakably displayed divinity in his outward appearance, then everyone around him would surely have believed in and followed him.
The changes a person experiences when he is resurrected and enters the governance of God take place in his heart and spirit. These internal changes also purify his body, transforming it from a haunt of Satan into a temple of God. In this sense, we may say that our physical body is also resurrected. We may compare it to a building which was previously used for evil purposes and is now used as a place of worship. Although there may be no change in its outward appearance, it is now sanctified as a sacred building.
1: There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.
2: For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set me free from the law of sin and death.
3: For God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do: sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, he condemned sin in the flesh,
4: in order that the just requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.
5: For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit.
6: To set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace.
7: For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God; it does not submit to God's law, indeed it cannot;
8: and those who are in the flesh cannot please God.
9: But you are not in the flesh, you are in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you. Any one who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him.
10: But if Christ is in you, although your bodies are dead because of sin, your spirits are alive because of righteousness.
11: If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will give life to your mortal bodies also through his Spirit which dwells in you.
12: So then, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh --
13: for if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body you will live.
14: For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God.
15: For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the spirit of sonship. When we cry, "Abba! Father!"
16: it is the Spirit himself bearing witness with our spirit that we are children of God,
17: and if children, then heirs, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him.
18: I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us.
19: For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God;
20: for the creation was subjected to futility, not of its own will but by the will of him who subjected it in hope;
21: because the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to decay and obtain the glorious liberty of the children of God.
22: We know that the whole creation has been groaning in travail together until now;
23: and not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the first fruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies.
24: For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees?
25: But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.
26: Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with sighs too deep for words.
27: And he who searches the hearts of men knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.
28: We know that in everything God works for good with those who love him, who are called according to his purpose.
29: For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the first-born among many brethren.
30: And those whom he predestined he also called; and those whom he called he also justified; and those whom he justified he also glorified.
31: What then shall we say to this? If God is for us, who is against us?
32: He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, will he not also give us all things with him?
33: Who shall bring any charge against God's elect? It is God who justifies;
34: who is to condemn? Is it Christ Jesus, who died, yes, who was raised from the dead, who is at the right hand of God, who indeed intercedes for us?
35: Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?
36: As it is written, "For thy sake we are being killed all the day long;
we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered."
37: No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.
38: For I am sure that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers,
39: nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
1: At that time Jesus went through the grainfields on the sabbath; his disciples were hungry, and they began to pluck heads of grain and to eat.
2: But when the Pharisees saw it, they said to him, "Look, your disciples are doing what is not lawful to do on the sabbath."
3: He said to them, "Have you not read what David did, when he was hungry, and those who were with him:
4: how he entered the house of God and ate the bread of the Presence, which it was not lawful for him to eat nor for those who were with him, but only for the priests?
5: Or have you not read in the law how on the sabbath the priests in the temple profane the sabbath, and are guiltless?
6: I tell you, something greater than the temple is here.
7: And if you had known what this means, `I desire mercy, and not sacrifice,' you would not have condemned the guiltless.
8: For the Son of man is lord of the sabbath."
9: And he went on from there, and entered their synagogue.
10: And behold, there was a man with a withered hand. And they asked him, "Is it lawful to heal on the sabbath?" so that they might accuse him.
11: He said to them, "What man of you, if he has one sheep and it falls into a pit on the sabbath, will not lay hold of it and lift it out?
12: Of how much more value is a man than a sheep! So it is lawful to do good on the sabbath."
13: Then he said to the man, "Stretch out your hand." And the man stretched it out, and it was restored, whole like the other.
14: But the Pharisees went out and took counsel against him, how to destroy him.
15: Jesus, aware of this, withdrew from there. And many followed him, and he healed them all,
16: and ordered them not to make him known.
17: This was to fulfil what was spoken by the prophet Isaiah:
18: "Behold, my servant whom I have chosen,
my beloved with whom my soul is well pleased.
I will put my Spirit upon him,
and he shall proclaim justice to the Gentiles.
19: He will not wrangle or cry aloud,
nor will any one hear his voice in the streets;
20: he will not break a bruised reed
or quench a smoldering wick,
till he brings justice to victory;
21: and in his name will the Gentiles hope."
22: Then a blind and dumb demoniac was brought to him, and he healed him, so that the dumb man spoke and saw.
23: And all the people were amazed, and said, "Can this be the Son of David?"
24: But when the Pharisees heard it they said, "It is only by Be-el'zebul, the prince of demons, that this man casts out demons."
25: Knowing their thoughts, he said to them, "Every kingdom divided against itself is laid waste, and no city or house divided against itself will stand;
26: and if Satan casts out Satan, he is divided against himself; how then will his kingdom stand?
27: And if I cast out demons by Be-el'zebul, by whom do your sons cast them out? Therefore they shall be your judges.
28: But if it is by the Spirit of God that I cast out demons, then the kingdom of God has come upon you.
29: Or how can one enter a strong man's house and plunder his goods, unless he first binds the strong man? Then indeed he may plunder his house.
30: He who is not with me is against me, and he who does not gather with me scatters.
31: Therefore I tell you, every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven men, but the blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven.
32: And whoever says a word against the Son of man will be forgiven; but whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, either in this age or in the age to come.
33: "Either make the tree good, and its fruit good; or make the tree bad, and its fruit bad; for the tree is known by its fruit.
34: You brood of vipers! how can you speak good, when you are evil? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.
35: The good man out of his good treasure brings forth good, and the evil man out of his evil treasure brings forth evil.
36: I tell you, on the day of judgment men will render account for every careless word they utter;
37: for by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned."
38: Then some of the scribes and Pharisees said to him, "Teacher, we wish to see a sign from you."
39: But he answered them, "An evil and adulterous generation seeks for a sign; but no sign shall be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah.
40: For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the whale, so will the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.
41: The men of Nin'eveh will arise at the judgment with this generation and condemn it; for they repented at the preaching of Jonah, and behold, something greater than Jonah is here.
42: The queen of the South will arise at the judgment with this generation and condemn it; for she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon, and behold, something greater than Solomon is here.
43: "When the unclean spirit has gone out of a man, he passes through waterless places seeking rest, but he finds none.
44: Then he says, `I will return to my house from which I came.' And when he comes he finds it empty, swept, and put in order.
45: Then he goes and brings with him seven other spirits more evil than himself, and they enter and dwell there; and the last state of that man becomes worse than the first. So shall it be also with this evil generation."
46: While he was still speaking to the people, behold, his mother and his brothers stood outside, asking to speak to him.
48: But he replied to the man who told him, "Who is my mother, and who are my brothers?"
49: And stretching out his hand toward his disciples, he said, "Here are my mother and my brothers!
50: For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother, and sister, and mother."
1: And he called to him his twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal every disease and every infirmity.
2: The names of the twelve apostles are these: first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; James the son of Zeb'edee, and John his brother;
3: Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James the son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus;
4: Simon the Cananaean, and Judas Iscariot, who betrayed him.
5: These twelve Jesus sent out, charging them, "Go nowhere among the Gentiles, and enter no town of the Samaritans,
6: but go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.
7: And preach as you go, saying, `The kingdom of heaven is at hand.'
8: Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse lepers, cast out demons. You received without paying, give without pay.
9: Take no gold, nor silver, nor copper in your belts,
10: no bag for your journey, nor two tunics, nor sandals, nor a staff; for the laborer deserves his food.
11: And whatever town or village you enter, find out who is worthy in it, and stay with him until you depart.
12: As you enter the house, salute it.
13: And if the house is worthy, let your peace come upon it; but if it is not worthy, let your peace return to you.
14: And if any one will not receive you or listen to your words, shake off the dust from your feet as you leave that house or town.
15: Truly, I say to you, it shall be more tolerable on the day of judgment for the land of Sodom and Gomor'rah than for that town.
16: "Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves; so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves.
17: Beware of men; for they will deliver you up to councils, and flog you in their synagogues,
18: and you will be dragged before governors and kings for my sake, to bear testimony before them and the Gentiles.
19: When they deliver you up, do not be anxious how you are to speak or what you are to say; for what you are to say will be given to you in that hour;
20: for it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.
21: Brother will deliver up brother to death, and the father his child, and children will rise against parents and have them put to death;
22: and you will be hated by all for my name's sake. But he who endures to the end will be saved.
23: When they persecute you in one town, flee to the next; for truly, I say to you, you will not have gone through all the towns of Israel, before the Son of man comes.
24: "A disciple is not above his teacher, nor a servant above his master;
25: it is enough for the disciple to be like his teacher, and the servant like his master. If they have called the master of the house Be-el'zebul, how much more will they malign those of his household.
26: "So have no fear of them; for nothing is covered that will not be revealed, or hidden that will not be known.
27: What I tell you in the dark, utter in the light; and what you hear whispered, proclaim upon the housetops.
28: And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul; rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell.
29: Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And not one of them will fall to the ground without your Father's will.
30: But even the hairs of your head are all numbered.
31: Fear not, therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows.
32: So every one who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven;
33: but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven.
34: "Do not think that I have come to bring peace on earth; I have not come to bring peace, but a sword.
35: For I have come to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law;
36: and a man's foes will be those of his own household.
37: He who loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; and he who loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me;
38: and he who does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me.
39: He who finds his life will lose it, and he who loses his life for my sake will find it.
40: "He who receives you receives me, and he who receives me receives him who sent me.
41: He who receives a prophet because he is a prophet shall receive a prophet's reward, and he who receives a righteous man because he is a righteous man shall receive a righteous man's reward.
42: And whoever gives to one of these little ones even a cup of cold water because he is a disciple, truly, I say to you, he shall not lose his reward."