The Words of In Jin Moon from 2009

You Must Start By Being A True Servant

In Jin Moon
November 22, 2009
Lovin Life Ministries

Good morning, brothers and sisters. How is everyone this morning? It’s very good to be back. I spent a week in Korea with our True Parents. We had a lot of festivities there, including another blessing for the Second Generation. I was able to take part of the Lovin’ Life Band so that we could properly congratulate them on this very special day. After the blessing we also had Children’s Day, where Father spoke for over nine hours! He gave the Korean members and many international guests a lot of love.

Then the next day we had a wonderful inauguration of my youngest brother, Dr. Hyung Jin Moon, as the new chairman of the Universal Peace Federation (UPF). It was a beautiful event. True Father is really going out of his way to make sure that the future of our movement is in very good hands. As you all know, he chose his youngest son to be the spiritual head of the movement. Not only is Hyung Jin Moon the spiritual head, but Father wants him to be the acting chairman of UPF and other organizations. So he has a tremendous amount of responsibility put upon his shoulders. I’m hoping that the American movement, as well as brothers and sisters all around the world, can truly unite together in heart and spirit and really support our younger brother so that he can do his job to the best of his abilities.

While I was in Korea, I met a lot of blessed children. I met the new couples who were walking down the aisle for the first time, but I also met a lot of younger children who are in elementary school. One of the things that I love to do when I come across young men and women of God is ask them a couple of questions. One question that I always like to ask young people is, "What would you like to do when you grow up?"

When I went around the country for the first time after I was appointed as head of the American movement and I really wanted to get to know the blessed children, I asked them, "What are your passions? What would you like to be later in life?" They gave me a lot of different, interesting answers. But one of the things I come across all the time in talking to young people is their desire to rule the world. When I was first meeting the blessed children in America, so many of them said to me, "I want to rule the world." And when I asked the young children in Korea, "What would you like to do when you grow up?" so many of them looked at me with bright eyes and said, "I want to rule the world." This was true for both boys and girls.

It reminded me of the moment in the movie Titanic when Jack Dawson puts himself on the bow of the boat, feeling the air across his face, and screams out, "I am the king of the world!" Young people want to take this world as they know it, grab it in the palm of their hands, own it, and wield it however they like.

In youthful exuberance, this desire to rule over becomes the most important thing in life. When we look at young people in America, we see that frequently the only thing they’re thinking about is, "What can I get out of this world? What can I own in this world? What can I get out of this or that person that might help advance my career to the next level? What can I get out of this university so I can get a fantastic job later?" Often we’re thinking about what we can take from the world, what we can rule over, not thinking about what we can give to the world and how we can serve the world.

That’s the difference between somebody who’s very young and somebody who’s mature. When you’re young, you’re thinking, "I want to rule the world." Now that some of us have children of our own, we don’t think, "I want to rule my family; I want to rule my kids." The foremost thought in our minds when we become mature young adults and when we have families is "How can I serve my family? How can I serve my children so I can truly bring out the best in them?" Young people are invariably engrossed in things like fast cars, fast women, fast money; they don’t want the slow burn or the difficulty of maintaining a certain lifestyle so they can be healthy. They go straight to the crash course, crash diets, something that’s immediate that they can enjoy now, that they don’t have to work fairly hard for.

Young people like extreme things. Young people have yet to experience life, so they haven’t come to understand the importance of moderation, of savoring the incredible moments that life has to offer, or of enjoying the small details that make life truly profound. When you listen to their language, everything is fast; everything is extreme. Young people don’t just like to ski; they like extreme skiing. They don’t just like diving; they like extreme diving. They don’t just enjoy scenery; they love bungee jumping. These are the excitement-filled, generating moods that young people thrive on and that they want all the time.

But we know that if we are truly going to be great in life, if we are truly going to be masters of our own God-given talent, life is an opportunity for us to harness that God-given talent and divinity so we can share it with the rest of the world, so we can serve the world with our different capabilities and passions.

When we’re young, many times we look at our parents as hindrances to this incredibly fast, extreme, exciting crash course of life. Often we don’t fully appreciate the older folks, and we don’t fully appreciate their wisdom. We don’t fully appreciate their guidance in our lives. But if you really think about it, the greatest gift for any child is his or her parents. The greatest gift for us, who are children of God, is knowing that God is our eternal parent; once we know that God is our eternal parent, then the concept of who we are becomes incredibly clear. We realize that we’re not just destined to win. We’re not a coincidence, but each and every one of us has incredible significance and meaning, as well as a profound reason why we are here. We begin to understand that we are eternal sons and daughters of God, that we have a wonderful passion or talent or divinity that God put in each and every one of us, like a beautiful seed. Our life becomes an environment for that seed to grow into a beautiful jujube tree, apple tree, orange tree, or whatever we were meant to be.

On November 22, 1970, my father said that before we want to rule the world, we have to understand that we have to completely control ourselves first. When my father uses the word control, what does he mean by that? What he means by controlling ourselves is that we are meant to become individually perfected human beings. Perfection doesn’t mean we never fall down, we never skin our knees, we never make a mistake. Perfection is a quality or a state of being. Through the give-and-take action based upon the mind and body unity that comes from the foundation of love, we can do so many wonderful things as men and women of God, as sons and daughters of God.

What my father was basically saying is, Before you think about being a leader, before you think about being the ruler of the world, you need to start working on yourself because if you’re really going to be a true master by living the life of a servant, then you have to put into practice what you will be teaching later on in life, as the teacher or ruler of a classroom, for instance. Learning to control our passions, learning the importance of delayed gratification, learning the importance of setting goals, and then slowly and persistently and tenaciously doing everything that we need to do to accomplish those goals -- these are the simple lessons in life that allow us to be great human beings.

When we are young and thinking only about ourselves, it’s very easy for us to want to rule the world for selfish reasons. But when you think about really ruling or serving the world from an unselfish point of view, you realize that in order to be a true leader, a true ruler, you must start by being a true servant, that is, somebody who decides to serve and raise other people up before yourself.

My children have also told me, "I want to rule the world." Whenever I hear that, I like to share with them a Korean folktale. It’s a wonderful story about a beautiful daughter. It has a moral lesson on the importance of obedience, of living for the sake of others, and of serving others. The story is about a young girl called Shim Chung, who was the daughter of a blind man living in a tiny village in Korea. She loved her father, so much so that she went everywhere with him. But because he was blind and had no way of holding a job, she had to beg around town for bits of food so she could keep the two of them alive.

She realized as she grew older that she had to find a different way to bring an income or she couldn’t take care of her father. One day walking through the marketplace, she encountered two sailors who were seeking guidance on where to find a young maiden whom they could sacrifice to the Sea King because they hadn’t been able to catch many fish. The seas were so violent that the fishing expeditions were not successful. They believed that if they sacrificed a beautiful young maiden to the Sea King, then the Sea King would be appeased and they could resume their fishing successfully.

Shim Chung listened intently to these sailors. They were offering a huge amount of money if they could find a young maiden. She thought, "Maybe if I volunteer myself to be sacrificed to the Sea King, not only will I be able to bring a great sea harvest for my village people, but I will also be able to take care of my father financially for the rest of his life. He will not have to worry about money, ever. Maybe I can have some older women in the village take care of him."

She decided she would not tell her father but would offer herself up as a sacrifice and make arrangements for her father to be taken care of. The fateful day came when there was a transfer of money, and Shim Chung didn’t even say good-bye to her father because she didn’t want to alarm him by thinking she would never be back. Off she went with the sailors.

They drove the ship out to sea, and indeed it was violent. The waves were so high that Shim Chung couldn’t see the sky. She couldn’t tell the difference between the ocean and the sky; it looked the same to her. The winds were so strong that she could barely see the tips of her fingers. But the sailors led her to the bow of the ship and got her ready to be thrown into the sea.

She said a little prayer for her father, praying for his long life and that he would be well taken care of, and she jumped into the ocean. When she jumped into the ocean, the waves engulfed her and embraced her as their own. But the Sea King was so overcome by Shim Chung’s beauty -- not just her external beauty, but the great beauty of her heart to sacrifice herself so she could take care of her blind father -- that he started to weep and told his ocean, "Bring her in your embrace to my kingdom."

So the ocean waves brought Shim Chung to the Sea King’s palace. He realized that she was indeed just as beautiful inside as she was outside. He was so overcome by her filial piety, by her love for her father, that he felt he could not hold her as his own sacrifice. So the Sea King did something he’d never done before. He decided he was going to give the sacrificial gift back to the world that she came from. He put her inside a beautiful lotus flower and had it float up to the ocean surface.

The sailors, so happy that the storms were appeased, that the sky was blue again, and that they could finally feel the freshness in the open air, were excited about fishing every day. But when they returned to the place where Shim Chung was sacrificed, they found something quite peculiar. They came upon a gigantic lotus flower floating on the surface and thought it would make a delightful gift for their king.

They fetched this beautiful flower, took it to their king’s palace, and offered it as a gift from their village. Upon seeing this beautiful flower, the king thanked the sailors profusely and brought it into the courtyard. When he stood before the flower, it slowly opened. The king had been seeking a beautiful wife for a long time but could not find someone who was beautiful on the inside as well as beautiful on the outside. There were many beautiful women at court, and many dignitaries brought their beautiful daughters to the palace. But the king never felt those ladies had the exquisite quality of a beautiful soul.

He was overcome by the beauty of the lotus flower. When it started to bloom in front of his eyes, the last thing he expected to see was a beautiful young maiden emerge. Shim Chung indeed was beautiful outside, but the king felt immediately that she had a beautiful soul. He fell madly in love with her. Later he learned how she came to be inside the flower and was so moved by her story that he made her his queen.

One of the things he wanted to do for his new queen was to grant her deepest wish. Of course her wish was to see her father once more. So the king prepared a beautiful banquet for the blind men in his country. Blind men from every village and hillside came to the palace to meet the king and offer their gratitude for such a wonderful feast and recognition.

Shim Chung was looking feverishly for the face of her father. Thousands of blind men came to the palace, but she could not recognize the face she so longed to see. The king said, "All these people are here; the banquet must commence." Actually it was coming to a close when finally, out of the corner of her eye, she saw a rickety man with a cane, helped by an elderly woman, walk up to the palace. At that moment she realized that it was her father.

Of course, queens are not supposed to run across the palace; they are supposed to sit and wait for people to approach. But Shim Chung was so overcome with happiness at seeing her father that she leaped up and ran to her father to give him a hug, crying, "Father, it is Shim Chung." But her father said, "But my Shim Chung is dead! What are you talking about?" She said, "No, Father, this is Shim Chung. Feel my face, my hands. Do you not remember? Feel my eyes, my nose. Do you not remember?" He felt her face, her eyes, and her cheekbones, and he realized that it was his daughter.

At that moment these two fused into one, and their love for each other became an incredible power. Her father cried out, "Shim Chung, how I have longed to see you!" And Shim Chung said, "Father, how long I have yearned to see you!" These words collided into an explosion of love, and a miracle happened. The father could finally see his beautiful daughter, who was not only his daughter but now the queen of his country. Shim Chung, realizing that the miracle of her love was what cured her father’s blindness, fell to her knees and cried, thanking God for such a beautiful gift.

This is a beautiful tale that’s told over and over again because it’s really a story about living for the sake of others, about loving somebody so much, wanting someone to be happy and well taken care of that you’re willing to sacrifice yourself for another’s happiness and well-being. In doing this, Shim Chung realized that by giving everything that she had, she received everything and much more. Not only did she receive another chance at life, but she received the greatest miracle of her father’s eyes finally resting on her face and seeing his beautiful daughter for the first time.

This is a wonderful tale because it teaches us that life is really not about ruling over the world. Shim Chung did not sacrifice herself to rule the world. She sacrificed herself to serve her village so that it could have a great harvest from the ocean, and she wanted to serve her father by sacrificing herself. By choosing to serve, she became a natural leader and a natural ruler of her country as the queen.

This is a wonderful thing to think about as we think about how we want to live our lives. Are we going to look at our lives as something we should just take from? Is life really about taking? Or is life really about taking care of each other, serving each other, doing the right thing for each other?

One of the greatest things about having a parent is that parents many times are the ones who help us define what our goals should be in life. It’s the parents who can see the talent in their children: "Maybe this one is really talented in music. Maybe this one is talented in writing." It’s the parents who will encourage the child to write, encourage the child to take creative writing workshops, or encourage the musically gifted child to practice, to work on his or her craft to become an accomplished musician like the ones we saw earlier. The Lovin’ Life Band can give so much joy to all of us because their talents allow us to experience God through music.

You young people in the audience, who are looking at your parents as a hindrance to your own success, please remember that your parents are your greatest gift because they help you set goals. Setting goals is like planting a tree, as my father said. It’s like planting a seed in fertile soil.

Not only do parents help us set goals, but they guide us through discipline. Once you plant a seed into soil, there’s an incubation period when you feel like nothing is happening, where very little is seen and you don’t know whether the seed is going to sprout until the seedling finally breaks through the soil. But once it does, and with continued care and nourishment, it can bring an incredible harvest in the future.

Not only do parents help us set goals in life by helping us plant the seed of the talent or passions that we have, help us channel it, and guide it through discipline, but many times the parents can make sure we do what is necessary to accomplish our goal so that we can take in the incredible harvest that comes. Our parents are wonderful because not only do they want us to be great, but great parents remind their children, "Accomplish your goal and be a great person. But what are you going to do about it?"

In his autobiography, my father tells of coming across a young high school student who was studying feverishly for an entrance exam. My father asked the young person, "Why are you studying?" The child replied, "My goal is to get into a university." My father took this student to task and said, "Your goal in life should not be to get into a university. Your university should be the means so that you can better serve the world with your talents and with your life."

What my father is asking all of us to do is not concentrate on what we can get out of life -- the best job, the best husband, the best wife, the best career. He’s really challenging us to ask ourselves, "What are we going to do with this great education? What are we going to do with this great job? How are we going to make the world a better place? If we are all children of the one Heavenly Parent, that means it doesn’t matter what country we come from. It doesn’t matter what our skin color is. It doesn’t matter what religious heritage we come from. We are all one family."

If we are one family, then the Jews should love the Christians more than their own. Unificationists should love Jews more than our own. The Muslims should love Christians more than their own because we are all siblings who belong to the same parent.

If we can acknowledge that God is our wonderful heavenly parent in heaven and all of us seated here are indeed siblings, that we belong to one family, then in the spirit of Thanksgiving this coming week, we as the children should live our life thanking our Heavenly Parent for this opportunity to grow and to give something back to the world with our own effort so we can truly leave something beautiful behind.

If you are a talented artist, be a Picasso. Don’t be satisfied with mediocrity. Be the best that you can be in that field, and give beauty back to the world. If you happen to be a fantastic writer, work on your craft and go through the chrysalis period that a butterfly goes through. The butterfly starts out as a creepy-crawler, right? But then it goes through the chrysalis stage, literally entombed in the cocoon. Many times as teens we felt our parents were keeping us prisoner, telling us to study, to practice, to work hard, to improve in our craft, maybe setting a schedule for homework, for practice, for reading. Maybe it was a very difficult time.

The Book of Hebrews gives special attention to the suffering of Jesus and God’s chosen people, highlighting that suffering and being God’s children go hand in hand. When we become God’s witness to the world, we have to accept the opposition and persecution that come from being who we are as Jesus’ disciple. The passage I shared, Hebrews 12:7 - 11, talks about that precisely. It uses the word discipline, saying that God is disciplining us for our own good. He is disciplining us for our own good because he wants us to partake in his holiness, in our divinity. He wants us to fully exercise being the incredible human beings that we were meant to be.

Verse 11 mentions that many times the discipline process is difficult and even painful. Often it’s not pleasant. But if we can go through this process, then afterward we will reap the fruits of our righteousness.

God is telling us not to get stuck in seeing ourselves as petrified human beings, meaning, if we happen to be engaged in great difficulty right now, don’t think that it will be with us forever. We can always count on change in life. As difficult as this period can be, no matter how difficult it will be, it will pass, and that is something we can always count on.

Just as we know that God is guiding us through discipline, through the suffering course of our lives, we need to remember that as a community and a movement, as we go through the difficulties of transitioning from being a new movement to an established presence, we must not be so fixated on the daily difficulties that we lose the big picture of why we are here.

We call ourselves Lovin’ Life Ministries because it’s a reminder that God did not put us here on earth just to suffer. In fact, the suffering or the disciplinary process that we go through to become great butterflies in the future transforms the creepy-crawler into a beautiful butterfly. It’s the difficult process or the suffering that we have to overcome that creates in us a stronger faith and a desire to be the eternal sons and daughters that we were all meant to be.

Brothers and sisters, do not lose heart because sometimes life is difficult. Sometimes it just feels like there’s no tomorrow around the corner. But you can always count on the fact that the sun will rise and there will be a new day. Better than the sun is to remember that God is always with us. No matter how troubled our waters may be, it will be God who lays himself down for us as a bridge so that we can cross over, so that we can go through the troubled and difficult periods of our lives.

It is God who is always walking right behind us, through every bit of suffering, through every trial and tribulation, through every difficulty. So if we remember that God is our constant and eternal parent, friend, guide, supporter, and our biggest fan, the only thing we really need to do is to decide to rejoice in the Lord, as it says in Luke 1:47. Our duty as children of God is to rejoice in the Lord each and every day.

It’s not the right man who’s going to make us happy. It’s not the right job that’s going to make us happy. It’s not the right career that’s going to make us happy. It’s not the right car that’s going to make us happy. Happiness and the decision to really love life is our five-percent responsibility. So we can decide to be happy today by simply saying, "I am God’s son, I am God’s daughter, and I am realizing that happiness is an inside job," meaning, it’s we inside who decide to be happy. Doing our job inside allows us to be happy outside as well.

I’ve often said that every human being is like a brilliant lightbulb, waiting to be turned on. Once we decide that we are going to be happy, once we decide through our inside job that we are going to be grateful and that we are going to honor our God by truly appreciating everything that was given to us, then that’s like deciding to flick the lightbulb on. It’s like deciding to be that brilliant light that we were all meant to be. It’s deciding to turn on our own divinity and realize how precious and how beautiful we are as God’s children.

I am hoping that you have a wonderful week and a wonderful month, and a safe trip back to your home and families. This is a time when our True Parents have asked for total unity of mind and heart, of mind and spirit. What they’re asking of us is nothing more than the decision to be grateful and to be happy, and to realize that we have an incredible gift in each other as belonging to one family under God. If we start from this decision, there is no limit to what we can do with our lives in gratitude and Thanksgiving.

I bring you love and greetings from our True Parents, who love the American movement very much. I hope that all of you have a lovely Thanksgiving with your families, and hopefully I will see you next week. Thank you.


Hebrews, chapter 12

1: Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with perseverance the race that is set before us,

2: looking to Jesus the pioneer and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.

3: Consider him who endured from sinners such hostility against himself, so that you may not grow weary or fainthearted.

4: In your struggle against sin you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood.

5: And have you forgotten the exhortation which addresses you as sons? -- "My son, do not regard lightly the discipline of the Lord, nor lose courage when you are punished by him.

6: For the Lord disciplines him whom he loves, and chastises every son whom he receives."

7: It is for discipline that you have to endure. God is treating you as sons; for what son is there whom his father does not discipline?

8: If you are left without discipline, in which all have participated, then you are illegitimate children and not sons.

9: Besides this, we have had earthly fathers to discipline us and we respected them. Shall we not much more be subject to the Father of spirits and live?

10: For they disciplined us for a short time at their pleasure, but he disciplines us for our good, that we may share his holiness.

11: For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant; later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.

12: Therefore lift your drooping hands and strengthen your weak knees,

13: and make straight paths for your feet, so that what is lame may not be put out of joint but rather be healed.

14: Strive for peace with all men, and for the holiness without which no one will see the Lord.

15: See to it that no one fail to obtain the grace of God; that no "root of bitterness" spring up and cause trouble, and by it the many become defiled;

16: that no one be immoral or irreligious like Esau, who sold his birthright for a single meal.

17: For you know that afterward, when he desired to inherit the blessing, he was rejected, for he found no chance to repent, though he sought it with tears.

18: For you have not come to what may be touched, a blazing fire, and darkness, and gloom, and a tempest,

19: and the sound of a trumpet, and a voice whose words made the hearers entreat that no further messages be spoken to them.

20: For they could not endure the order that was given, "If even a beast touches the mountain, it shall be stoned."

21: Indeed, so terrifying was the sight that Moses said, "I tremble with fear."

22: But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to innumerable angels in festal gathering,

23: and to the assembly of the first-born who are enrolled in heaven, and to a judge who is God of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect,

24: and to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks more graciously than the blood of Abel.

25: See that you do not refuse him who is speaking. For if they did not escape when they refused him who warned them on earth, much less shall we escape if we reject him who warns from heaven.

26: His voice then shook the earth; but now he has promised, "Yet once more I will shake not only the earth but also the heaven."

27: This phrase, "Yet once more," indicates the removal of what is shaken, as of what has been made, in order that what cannot be shaken may remain.

28: Therefore let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe;

29: for our God is a consuming fire.

Luke, chapter 1

1: Inasmuch as many have undertaken to compile a narrative of the things which have been accomplished among us,

2: just as they were delivered to us by those who from the beginning were eyewitnesses and ministers of the word,

3: it seemed good to me also, having followed all things closely for some time past, to write an orderly account for you, most excellent The-oph'ilus,

4: that you may know the truth concerning the things of which you have been informed.

5: In the days of Herod, king of Judea, there was a priest named Zechari'ah, of the division of Abi'jah; and he had a wife of the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth.

6: And they were both righteous before God, walking in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord blameless.

7: But they had no child, because Elizabeth was barren, and both were advanced in years.

8: Now while he was serving as priest before God when his division was on duty,

9: according to the custom of the priesthood, it fell to him by lot to enter the temple of the Lord and burn incense.

10: And the whole multitude of the people were praying outside at the hour of incense.

11: And there appeared to him an angel of the Lord standing on the right side of the altar of incense.

12: And Zechari'ah was troubled when he saw him, and fear fell upon him.

13: But the angel said to him, "Do not be afraid, Zechari'ah, for your prayer is heard, and your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you shall call his name John.

14: And you will have joy and gladness, and many will rejoice at his birth;

15: for he will be great before the Lord, and he shall drink no wine nor strong drink, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit, even from his mother's womb.

16: And he will turn many of the sons of Israel to the Lord their God,

17: and he will go before him in the spirit and power of Eli'jah, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just, to make ready for the Lord a people prepared."

18: And Zechari'ah said to the angel, "How shall I know this? For I am an old man, and my wife is advanced in years."

19: And the angel answered him, "I am Gabriel, who stand in the presence of God; and I was sent to speak to you, and to bring you this good news.

20: And behold, you will be silent and unable to speak until the day that these things come to pass, because you did not believe my words, which will be fulfilled in their time."

21: And the people were waiting for Zechari'ah, and they wondered at his delay in the temple.

22: And when he came out, he could not speak to them, and they perceived that he had seen a vision in the temple; and he made signs to them and remained dumb.

23: And when his time of service was ended, he went to his home.

24: After these days his wife Elizabeth conceived, and for five months she hid herself, saying,

25: "Thus the Lord has done to me in the days when he looked on me, to take away my reproach among men."

26: In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth,

27: to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin's name was Mary.

28: And he came to her and said, "Hail, O favored one, the Lord is with you!"

29: But she was greatly troubled at the saying, and considered in her mind what sort of greeting this might be.

30: And the angel said to her, "Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God.

31: And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus.

32: He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Most High; and the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David,

33: and he will reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there will be no end."

34: And Mary said to the angel, "How shall this be, since I have no husband?"

35: And the angel said to her, "The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you;

therefore the child to be born will be called holy, the Son of God.

36: And behold, your kinswoman Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son; and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren.

37: For with God nothing will be impossible."

38: And Mary said, "Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word." And the angel departed from her.

39: In those days Mary arose and went with haste into the hill country, to a city of Judah,

40: and she entered the house of Zechari'ah and greeted Elizabeth.

41: And when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, the babe leaped in her womb; and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit

42: and she exclaimed with a loud cry, "Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb!

43: And why is this granted me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me?

44: For behold, when the voice of your greeting came to my ears, the babe in my womb leaped for joy.

45: And blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfilment of what was spoken to her from the Lord."

46: And Mary said, "My soul magnifies the Lord,

47: and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,

48: for he has regarded the low estate of his handmaiden. For behold, henceforth all generations will call me blessed;

49: for he who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is his name.

50: And his mercy is on those who fear him from generation to generation.

51: He has shown strength with his arm, he has scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts,

52: he has put down the mighty from their thrones, and exalted those of low degree;

53: he has filled the hungry with good things, and the rich he has sent empty away.

54: He has helped his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy,

55: as he spoke to our fathers, to Abraham and to his posterity for ever."

56: And Mary remained with her about three months, and returned to her home.

57: Now the time came for Elizabeth to be delivered, and she gave birth to a son.

58: And her neighbors and kinsfolk heard that the Lord had shown great mercy to her, and they rejoiced with her.

59: And on the eighth day they came to circumcise the child; and they would have named him Zechari'ah after his father,

60: but his mother said, "Not so; he shall be called John."

61: And they said to her, "None of your kindred is called by this name."

62: And they made signs to his father, inquiring what he would have him called.

63: And he asked for a writing tablet, and wrote, "His name is John." And they all marveled.

64: And immediately his mouth was opened and his tongue loosed, and he spoke, blessing God.

65: And fear came on all their neighbors. And all these things were talked about through all the hill country of Judea;

66: and all who heard them laid them up in their hearts, saying, "What then will this child be?" For the hand of the Lord was with him.

67: And his father Zechari'ah was filled with the Holy Spirit, and prophesied, saying,

68: "Blessed be the Lord God of Israel, for he has visited and redeemed his people,

69: and has raised up a horn of salvation for us in the house of his servant David,

70: as he spoke by the mouth of his holy prophets from of old,

71: that we should be saved from our enemies, and from the hand of all who hate us;

72: to perform the mercy promised to our fathers, and to remember his holy covenant,

73: the oath which he swore to our father Abraham,

74: to grant us that we, being delivered from the hand of our enemies, might serve him without fear,

75: in holiness and righteousness before him all the days of our life.

76: And you, child, will be called the prophet of the Most High; for you will go before the Lord to prepare his ways,

77: to give knowledge of salvation to his people in the forgiveness of their sins,

78: through the tender mercy of our God, when the day shall dawn upon us from on high

79: to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace."

80: And the child grew and became strong in spirit, and he was in the wilderness till the day of his manifestation to Israel.  

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