The Words of Hyung Jin Moon From 2011
The substance of my sermon today is about Luke 14:26 in the Bible. "If any one comes to me and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be my disciple."
Here, Jesus used very strong expressions. Let's analyze this quotation closely. At that time, Jesus told people, Hate your parents, the parents who'd raised you. Hate your wife, whom you love. Hate your children. Hate your siblings. If you want to become my disciple, you have to hate your own life and follow me. We tend to think that Jesus said only nice things like "Love your neighbor as yourself." However, the historical Jesus was a very strong person. If we read the Bible carefully, we can find the strong aspects of Jesus' character; we come to see that Jesus lived according to an absolute standard. Jesus is like Father; that is the standard Christ lives at.
When Christians in the early days saw this quotation from Luke 14:26, they would have known the word, in classical Greek, as miseo. In the Korean language, "hate" can be a strong expression, but in some cases, it can be mild. For example, a little kid might say, I hate you, Mom! However, the word miseo is stronger than that. The word means "abhorrence." It refers to extreme hate. Therefore, two thousand years ago, with Jerusalem as the background, it was an extreme word for not only the Jews but also the Greeks next to them.
Many feelings came to me while thinking of these statements by Jesus while I have been staying by Father's side. Observing Father, I can imagine what kind of person Jesus was. Jesus wasn't like a Hollywood actor with a soft smile, a soft voice, long blond hair and blue eyes, as we have seen him depicted in the world of imagery. Jesus was actually a revolutionary. He began a revolution and brought forth God's wrath. As Jesus said, "Do not think that I have come to bring peace on earth; I have not come to bring peace, but a sword."
Hyung Jin nim and Yeon Ah nim pray during Pledge Service at the Pine Ridge Resort on November 1 (Ahn Shi Il)
He also said, two thousand years ago, "Follow me, and leave the dead to bury their own dead." If someone said that to you when your parents had just passed away, it would be a very cutting remark. I cannot imagine any leader telling that to his disciples, but Jesus said it and so has Father. Mrs. Lan-young Moon, president of WFWP International, wrote in her testimony that she had been in Alaska with Father just before her mother died. She heard that her mother was in critical condition, so she reported this to Father and expressed her intent to return to Korea. But Father ordered her to stay with him, much as Jesus had instructed his disciple. Then, however, Father didn't say anything to her or instruct her on anything in particular but was on a boat at sea all day long for several days. During this time, her mother passed away. Mrs. Moon testified that she anguished over the question of why Father had seized her like that and had not allowed her to be with her mother during the last moments of her mother's life. But after that, Father appointed her to her important position. How high the standard of Jesus Christ is! How great is the passion of Christ! We can gain a perspective on our situation through the Bible.
It is very hard on our bodies when we attend Father. Often we cannot keep up. Father led a twenty-two-hour Hoon Dok Hae, took an hour of rest, led Hoon Dok Hae again, went out to sea for more than twelve hours, came ashore, boarded a helicopter to go somewhere else, arrived at his destination and held a meeting. Those who take care of and follow Father are at the point of collapse. Actually, because I attend Father like this, I realize that I cannot always monitor myself well enough. Because I must follow Father -- however and whenever he moves and acts -- and run after him in an instant, I was not monitoring myself. I reached the point of being unable to continue, and became sick. Once I recovered, I realized the degree to which I am unable to adequately follow True Parents.
Now, notably, Father has a problem with his knees. His legs are in the process of recovering and he is not meant to stand because his knees are in supports. However, a few days ago he spoke at Sun Moon University. He said he had to be at the UPF event there. He stood up for the entire three and a half hours that he spoke. The assembled ambassadors for peace saw him pushing himself to the extreme. His whole body was sweating. Father is the body attending God without a moment of rest.
If God wants to speak for three hours through Father, Father must overcome the pain and endure three hours at the podium.
The event was to commemorate the twenty-year anniversary of True Parents visiting Kim II-sung, then the leader of North Korea. Twenty years ago, Father met Kim 11-Sung; they shared ideas, and formed a brotherly relationship. Father did things that no one else in Korean history could have done.
Based on the fact that this was the theme of the event, many peace ambassadors and others had come. After the welcoming speeches and an introduction, Father came to the podium. He began talking about absolute sexual ethics and the sexual organs. He even used expressions that from the viewpoint of society were somewhat vulgar. But he didn't say one word about the reunification of North Korea and South Korea! Father speaks about shocking topics. It was not only this event; he does so at many official events. If we look honestly into our own hearts, we may admit to feeling embarrassed by this.
As you know if you look at the history of Christianity, Martin Luther launched the Reformation. He completely changed Europe with a new revolution that began Protestantism, which continues to the present day. You may know of Martin Luther, but there is a hidden story about him that many people do not know. Martin Luther wrote in German; if you look at his original writings in German, you'll see strong, indecent, and profane expressions -- and many of them!
Martin Luther started out as a priest and later became a minister. When he was giving spiritual counsel to Christians, he educated them to use strong curse words. He said that you have to be able to shoot the worst curses that you can think of at Satan. Also if you look at Martin Luther's writings, he was attacking the Roman Catholic Pope and the Catholic organization which were corrupt and declining at that time. Therefore, Luther cursed them because Satan had entered them. One part of the Lutheran school said it was the Lutheran theology to repel Satan through curses.
Brothers and sisters, as you know, Martin Luther was the central theologian in the history of God's providence to prepare for the advent of True Parents on earth. He was the central figure who laid the global foundation within Christianity for the second advent of the Lord, the True Parents. That central figure used very strong curse words, extreme expressions that shocked ordinary people.
When Father says shocking things in public, I wonder if Father is using the same method Luther used. There are occasions on which Father speaks especially strongly to women; he used very strong expressions, strong language, about the sexual organs. When you see that, you have to look from God's perspective. That was the area of the body where Satan has obtained his greatest victories in fallen history. Therefore, from God's viewpoint, that part of the body is the most important place in chasing Satan out. Therefore, Father uses this method of cursing from a theological basis and perspective. He shocks people because he uses curses that chase away Satan. In so doing he can reclaim God's ownership and dominion over the world. This is how I see it.
Julia H. Moon, director of Universal Ballet, was awarded the Kyung Ahm Academic Award on November 4 for her contribution to the development of ballet in Korea. It is considered the most prestigious prize in Korea and comes with a sizable monetary award.
When I studied Buddhism, especially Zen Buddhism, I found many stories like that. One Buddhist monk was trying to become spiritually awakened, so he asked a senior monk about what the mind of a Buddha is. This is a question for Buddhist meditation and contains many philosophical connotations. However, the elderly monk answered, "Buddha is excrement." You may think that monk was very strange -- Was he actually spiritually enlightened, or was he just getting old?
In the world of the spiritually enlightened, enlightened monks say extreme things to their disciples in order to awaken them spiritually. One great, famous Buddhist priest often hit his disciples with a stick when they asked questions. It was not because he was upset, but to bring enlightenment to them. He struck them in order to awaken them spiritually. A history exists of such methods being used over hundreds of years. When I hear a story like this it makes me think about Father.
For example, we were traveling from Geomun Island to Yeosu by helicopter. I was talking with one leader about China Father was sitting right next to me. He said, "China is not the problem..." and immediately started speaking about the sexual organs. Then he began speaking about numbers. Our guest, who is not a member of our church, may have wondered how this related to China! Using the same method as those venerable Buddhist priests, Father does this to awaken us. I gave much thought to this and to what I have learned in past years.
When 172 American faith leaders came to Korea, they went around the nation and testified to many people about True Parents for two weeks. They left their own churches and responsibilities behind, and came, responding to instructions True Parents had given just a week earlier. This is no ordinary thing for such people to do.
True Parents spent three weeks here in Korea and then went back to Las Vegas. Then, Father mentioned that he had to teach the faith leaders something further. So, some of the ministers met in Las Vegas again. They participated in Hoon Dok Hae. But on that day, Father got very angry, stood up, threw books, and even slapped some faces.
Americans are different from Koreans. When Father gets upset and stands up, Koreans lower their eyes. That is the way in the Orient. However, Americans look into the eyes of the person speaking to them.' They don't look down. But because they were looking straight at Father, he became even angrier. As I observed the situation, books were flying. I was sitting at the front, so all the religious leaders were looking at me. In their eyes I could see them asking me, "Can you please help us comprehend this? We went to your country and toured around for your father for two weeks. The work at our own churches, mosques and temples is piling up but we came here, yet there is no word of thanks...."
Korea has an oriental culture and Koreans have vertical relationships, so Koreans may understand these things. In these modern times, however, even great religious leaders, great politicians or someone with a lot of power cannot behave like this, even in Korean society where such actions are more widely understood. But in American society this is something that would be almost impossible to comprehend. Because Father was using strong language that day, I actually became very worried that some of the faith leaders might talk back in strong language themselves.
However, after the religious leaders talked about this seriously, they understood Father's urgent providential timetable and passionate heart, and that Father has things he must absolutely get done for God. These ministers know the Bible very well. Jesus moved from Galilee to the Jordan River, from the Jordan River to this city, from this city to that city. He would move around urgently from here to there, suddenly giving instructions, suddenly speaking in extreme terms.... When they consider the life these disciples lived as they followed Jesus, some of the faith leaders understood that Jesus and
Father might well behave similarly. There were ministers who were very mature in heart, and I truly appreciated seeing that. Actually, after we talked together with the faith leaders, all the tension was eased and the stress diminished. It was indeed a precious time together.
Father meets us truly as the God of love, but at the same time, he meets us as the God of wrath. From the theological point of view, God's wrath is of crucial importance. We give pain to True Parents. In such circumstances, God judges us and He has to pour out His wrath on us. The Messiah is someone who must convey God's wrath and judgment to humankind. I always focus on the fact that these people are not just my dad and mom, these are perfected Adam and Eve. I am the one who must abundantly receive the judgment and wrath of God. I must repent for the things I do not accomplish properly.
Moreover, True Mother has attended True Father for fifty years. I feel how tremendous True Mother's love is. Father has given her a lot of tough training, and she has endured.
Generally when I meet people, I tell them, "My father is not just a human being. He is the living God. He transcends human limitations. When we try to keep up with Father, we collapse." You cannot imagine how great the staff members attending Father are. They attend Father in rotation because
Father transcends all human limits. Because Father can do that, if we don't take good care of our own mind and body, in such situations we may misunderstand Father. There may be times when we resent him or even are tempted to deny him.
As we saw in Luke 14:26, Jesus made extreme statements and demanded absolute love from all his disciples. Jesus didn't do so in order to control his disciples, or to take advantage of them. He did so to save them (and all of us) and to sever their relationship with Satan. He did so to bring them into a relationship with God instead. This is Christ's unique role. He has no recourse but to demand absolute love.
I say that I attend and follow Father, but we are actually laboring to do so. We attend Father all day long. Even though we may be scolded at certain times, our conscience demands that we do things for him joyfully, smile, and express our thanks. This is not just something we do once or twice, but over and over again. When we look at this fact, we are drawn to reflect on how much we really love God.
We say that we love God, but Father said, "You must love me as much as I love God." As you know when Father holds Hoon Dok Hae for three hours, four hours, six hours, or more, we are already struggling. If Hoon Dok Hae continues after noon, people become very tired, and they hope it will end soon so they can return home.
Even though we say that we want to love God forever, if loving God for only six hours is difficult, we cannot say that we love God. You may think this is an extreme expression but sometimes I feel as if in reality I don't love God; rather, it could be said that I hate Him. Spending even six hours with God through Hoon Dok Hae is challenging enough. But when Father held Hoon Dok Hae for twenty-two and a half hours, we all were completely exhausted. The faces of those attending that session were completely pale. Just to love God for one day is that difficult! How can I, who cannot love God for a few hours, love God forever?
Father gave me a huge responsibility. Walking alongside Father, I continue to strive to be victorious in the training Father has given me. Nothing is more precious than accomplishing that, I feel. This is not only my personal training. We are also learning who Christ is. When the living substantial self of God, Christ, who has a physical body, walks on earth, we are learning what kind of person he is. We are observing this with our own eyes. We can experience this all together with Christ on earth. It is not easy. It is, however, important training for which we can be grateful.
Brothers and sisters, let us put the same heart and absolute love that Jesus demanded, that Christ demanded, and that True Parents demand of us into practice from today!