The Words of In Jin Moon from 2011
On February 20, Rev. In Jin Moon spoke about the need for all districts in the United States to unite as a whole, and emphasized that absolute obedience is in fact receiving the total package that is being offered. She shared that this can be done by facing one's fears, including new happenings within our movement, that may seem revolutionary, but are actually inspiring second and third generation to become future leaders of our movement.
Good morning, brothers and sisters. How is everyone? I'm delighted to hear that you're all doing well. It's so good to be back in this beautiful country of America. Since we got back, we've had a lot of things to think about, looking forward to the New Year and different things that we will be doing here in Lovin' Life Ministries.
This weekend in particular we are delighted to have all the district pastors from around the country who have come to spend the weekend here together with us. I would just like them to get up so everyone can take a good look at them. I know what all of you are thinking: Where are the ladies in the group? It's a work in progress. But at least you have a woman senior pastor, so it should compensate for the lack thereof.
It's really fantastic to come together at the beginning of the year so that we can revisit the vision that we have for America. Again, I stress the importance of working together as a unified whole, as one body, if you will, representing our True Parents. When they go back to their different regions, I am asking the district leaders to fully unite with what we're doing here at Headquarters. We cannot do our job if we do not have their support, just as they cannot really do their job to the best of their abilities if they do not have our support.
Let's work together and appreciate each other, knowing that God works in mysterious ways all the time. Sometimes God sends you someone to work with who might not have been your image of a central figure, a senior pastor, or a district director. But I believe that in all things sometimes God puts an obstacle in front of us to overcome, like a test, because when we overcome it and grow through suffering and through trying something new and experiencing something that we never thought we would experience before, it deepens our hearts and makes us appreciate the heart of God more profoundly.
Here we are at the "breaking news" time in history. I've often said that we have to testify to our Parents, about the True Parents being with us here today. We should not be silent any more. As Unificationists, we should be proud of who we are because we know who our Heavenly Parent is. We know who we are. We are divine, eternal sons and daughters who were put upon this earth to do great things.
In fulfilling our destinies, one of the most important things we need to do is to testify to our True Parents. I think when Father first encouraged all of us to distribute his autobiography, a lot of people who were living in the cocoon of their own families or careers felt a little challenged. Many of them have come and said to me, "When I started distributing these books, I was somewhat afraid. I wasn't sure how people would receive me. I wasn't sure if they would just throw the book away or throw it back in my face."
But they realized that, once they united with what Father was asking them to do, great miracles would take place. Because they believed in all the great things that could be done, they pushed aside their fear.
When Ann Landers, the famous advice columnist, was interviewed some years ago, the interviewer asked her, "You give column advice to thousands of people every week. If you were to tell me what is the single, most important problem that you spend your time working through, encouraging people to deal with, what would that problem be?" Ann Landers said, "That's very simple. Without a doubt, it is fear."
When we look at the Good Book, in Isaiah 41:10, it says, "Fear not, for I am with you. Do not look around in terror and be dismayed." The Bible is incredibly profound in that what it is clearly stating is "Fear not, because I am with you."
Being a mother who is still in the process of discovering who I am and what kind of a person I would like to be, I'm always checking myself. When I heard this statement from Ann Landers about fear, I thought about it. In my being a mother, wife, and sister, fear for me represents an inner turmoil that we all go through. Everybody has been through it. I am no different from any of you.
In my daily life, I remind myself to watch out for four points. Many times fear is one of those things that debilitates you, incapacitates you. Men and women, children, teachers, lawyers, doctors alike are overcome by this fear of failure.
In particular, in our movement the fear of failure -- as parents, as children of God, as a movement -- is so engrossing that we often become petrified and feel totally squashed by our inability to shake off this fear. In a sense we experience exactly what the Good Book says: We feel dismayed because we are looking around in terror.
We are looking, exercising our visual perception. The Bible highlights the word look. We are looking at terror, and that's why we're afraid. Really, we should be looking at God instead of looking at terror, instead of being petrified and debilitated. Instead of telling ourselves that we cannot, there's no way, we need to start saying we can, we will, and we do. With God on our side, we can be a great son or daughter.
Young Abraham Lincoln
The life story of Abraham Lincoln, one of the great presidents of our country of America, is really in one sense a story of failure, starting from the age of 27, when he first failed at his business. He lost a seat in the legislature the next year. The following year he lost a second business. Then he ran for Congress and did not make it. Finally by the age of 37 he was elected to Congress, but two years later he was defeated. Then he ran for a Senate seat and was defeated. Then he ran to be the vice president of the United States and was defeated. Only at age 51 did he finally get elected, and that was as president of the United States.
If we were to cut a slice of the life of Abraham Lincoln at 22, when he failed absolutely at his business, we in the room might look at Brother Abe and say, "He looks like a loser, not many prospects. He lost his business but he had the gall to run for legislator the next year? This man is really insane!" The year after, if we look, he loses again. Can you imagine what people must have been thinking? "This man is either blind or perhaps he is infused with a spirit." These are two very different extremes.
You have to applaud him for having the courage to get up and try again. When you look at snapshots of his life at these crucial moments -- when he lost the political race, when he lost the legislative seat, when he was elected and then lost the seat in Congress two years later, on and on -- basically you're holding up a deck of cards that spell failure.
But the man continued and persevered. The great way that we need to understand our life when we look at the example of Abraham Lincoln is that life helps us through a process. By dealing with the failures, if we can deepen our understanding and our conviction that we want to change the world, that we want to do great things, then these minor setbacks become a strong impetus to try again and to make great strides, remembering that this man who was known to be a man of failure became one of America's greatest presidents.
As senior pastor I get a lot of e-mails from parents who are literally pulling their hair out, saying, "My kids are wild. I feel like a failure." Well, let's look back 30 years when you first joined the church. You were quite wild, too. I got a taste of what Reverend Krishnek could have looked like at the last Halloween party, like something out of Hell's Angels.
Sometimes when we become parents, we want our children to be perfect, to be angelic. We don't expect our child to experience colic, the incessant crying that drives every parent crazy. We have all these preconceived understandings of what we would like our children to be.
Nine Inch Nails
The minute the child wants to try purple hair, or wants to listen to Nine Inch Nails, or doesn't want to come to service, the parents feel an incredible sense of failure. But one of the things I tell myself (and I would like to share with all the persevering parents in the audience) is that whatever we go through with our loved ones, helping them to become beautiful sons and daughters of God will make us better grandparents. And hopefully, by then, our children, having experienced a parental heart of their own, can come to appreciate the things that we tried to do.
Parents, do not be dismayed or discouraged. When I think about the words dismayed and discouraged, it's interesting. The word discouraged is almost like God saying, "Stop dissing your courage. Stop it. Do not be discouraged. Do not be paralyzed by the fear of failure, looking at the snapshot of your life." Just like Abraham Lincoln, we have a long life ahead of us. Our children have long lives ahead of them. Just because they're trying out things or seemingly rebelling in ways that we least expected them to do does not mean that they are a lost cause.
We have to believe that they will find their way. As long as we don't allow them to fail in that, we're not going to keep them in bondage to the snapshot of the life that they find themselves in. As long as we do not allow them to fail, then they will not fail.
Failure becomes a reality only if we accept it. That is, failure becomes a reality only if we accept it as an indictment or a finality. But as long as we know that these setbacks or "failures" are part of a work in progress to create a better, deeper and more loving person, then we can maintain a positive attitude. Instead of saying, "I can't; I won't, change it to a thought pattern that says, "I can, and I will, and I do."
Abraham Lincoln was a symbol of failure until he became a great president. Without Abe we would not have the Emancipation Proclamation. He was the image of what America could be at one of the most important and difficult times in its history. Someone who was seen as a total failure might actually be a work in progress to become a great man or woman of God.
I encourage all the young people who might find themselves in a difficult time with their families, with brothers and sisters, perhaps with their colleagues and friends: Do not be afraid. God says, "Fear not because I am with you. Do not look around in terror." We are so busy looking that many times we forget to feel God in our lives.
Instead of just relying on our visual perceptions, on our auditory perceptions or olfactory perceptions, we need to remember that we are divine beings and God speaks to us through our hearts. So we have to find God and we have to create a place for God because, when God is by our side, there is no fear of failure.
President Woodrow Wilson throwing out the first ball, opening day, 1916
The other point that we struggle with in our daily lives is not just the fear of failure but the fear of endless life changes. Many people are afraid of change. In fact, President Woodrow Wilson said, "If you want to see a set of enemies pop up, just try to do something different." Do something that changes the way things used to be done.
I remember trying to encourage our movement's need for a Lovin' Life Ministry, the need to really unite together at least once a week so we feel like we're part of one family, like we're on the same page and we stand on the same platform. There was a huge ruckus. There was a great deal of discomfort in not wanting to change and try something different. I was a strange-looking senior pastor. I didn't come with a three-piece suit; I had revolutionary ideas that all seemed to point to failure. Maybe they looked at the senior pastor as a crazy head coach who did not make any sense at all. But the incredible thing about all of you is that at least you gave me a chance, begrudgingly or not, and for that I thank you.
The history of religious worship is very much rooted in tradition. Each faith has its own set of rituals, its own set of traditions. When we try something new, it might not rub everybody the right way. But my vision was to invigorate and re-inspire the Second and Third Generation that we have lost along the way. Our movement did not take care of our young people. We were reaching out to brothers and sisters not in our movement without taking care of our own. If we don't continually do both at the same time, there's going to be a vacuum when we are confronted with the reality that these good men sitting here are in their 50s and 60s.
We need to think about raising up a whole new generation of young people who are trained, ready, and educated for pastoral work. You cannot just put on a three-piece suit and start preaching in the pulpit. You have to have knowledge about how to work with people. You have to understand how it feels to have a parental heart.
All these changes that are seemingly revolutionary are not really revolutionary at all. By cleaning house, by raising up our youth for future leadership, we can maintain a very strong foundation, a strong house, and a strong temple for God and True Parents. Any other work we do just becomes icing on the cake.
All we did really in the last year of Lovin' Life Ministry was to clean house, to reorganize the organizational structure of HSA and try to infuse it with a new vision to take it forward into the next millennium. A lot of people have said, "Why is Lovin' Life not emphasizing witnessing, getting out there door to door?"
The answer is, because the world is a different place. Thirty years ago a lot of you were backpacking around the country. Now young people are backpacking around on the Internet. They're used to a certain visual stimulation that the older folks never had. They're used to advertising companies showing them what is beautiful, the thing to be, and they're inundated with visual imagery. If we can't make our ministry attractive to young people by using media as well as the great message that our True Parents bring to the world, then we're not being effective as a movement, are we?
When I asked the district directors to work together with me, I think a lot of people felt like, "If we worship with Lovin' Life Ministry on Sunday, what's going to happen to all the pastors?" The question is an interesting one for me because pastoral work is not just a couple of hours on Sunday. Pastoral work takes place Monday through Sunday. All I'm asking for is a couple of hours on Sunday when we can unite as a movement so that there's a unity of heart in realizing that we are working as one family. There has to be a feeling of unity, that while you are here together with us, brothers and sisters in North Carolina, in San Diego, or in Alaska are sharing the same message. It creates unity of heart, which is fundamental and important for the work that we need to do.
If you really think about it, I am not taking away your pulpit. In fact, I am unleashing you from the bondage of the pulpit. I am saying, "Get out there. I have only one body, and I'm being pulled left and right all over the world. But you as the body of our True Parents can visit and knock on every door of your congregation and be there as an older brother or an older sister to a teenage kid who needs somebody else other than their parents." There's an incredible amount of work that needs to be done.
Our True Father has emphasized the importance of absolute obedience. When he uses the word absolute, what he is saying is, take the whole package. When God wants to give you a blessing or gift, take the whole package. Many times God wants to bless us, and we're saying, "Yes, I want your blessing, but just this part or that part, but not that other part." But what Heavenly Parent is asking at this time of the breaking news, when it's our responsibility to testify to the world, is to take God's blessing as a total package and then think about how you're going to do your work around it to make it manifest and substantiated in each of your districts.
It's amazing to me how when I look at the different districts, the districts that have taken Lovin' Life Ministry as a package have a whole different atmosphere. But in districts where they have said, "Yes, this is God's blessing, we want this but not that, maybe this," it takes away from the full package deal that God wants to share with you and with the rest of America.
The True Family is asking all of you to be united with our True Parents. There are a lot of things going on in our movement and difficulties in light of what has taken place at UCI. It causes us to think twice about what Father means when he says "absolute obedience." I've often shared with brothers and sisters that I like to understand the word obedience as absolutely listening to God's heart.
I've often taken note when different people come up to me and say, "Your sermons are getting better." I wonder if you would go up to a minister in any other church and say something like that. But you feel like you can do that because you look at the True Children as children. But we're not children any more. We have children of our own, and we have a lot of experience that we'd like to share with everybody.
One leader confided in me that he was reviewing some of the Lovin' Life Ministry services earlier in the year, and he said, "I realized that what you are trying to say was incredibly profound. I didn't get it at that time. I get it now."
You have to understand: I didn't change. I didn't change my approach. I didn't change my heart. Perhaps it was you who have come to change your heart, and for that I'm immensely grateful.
Brothers and sisters, our movement has been kind of like a dinosaur. It was prehistoric in that we weren't really acknowledging or honest about how we were falling short in the different ways we needed to take care of our families and really put the image of ideal family into practice. We have not done that. We've talked the talk. We have fantastic lecturers. But we haven't really applied it to the point that when people visit our movement, they say, "Wow, the movement really is a living principle. God gave us the Divine Principle, but it's our responsibility to make it a living principle by applying it in our daily lives.
Another thing that I think a lot of people are afraid of is being alone. We are so engulfed in the fear of being left out, of not being accepted, that we're afraid to stand up, afraid to testify who we are. We're afraid to talk about our faith for fear of being judged, for fear of being criticized or accused. But we need to stand with God.
Just as the Good Book says in Isaiah, "Fear not, for I am with you." God is with us. Just as the Bible talks about how God will strengthen and harden us through difficulties as we work through the endless changes of our lives, and just as God has promised that he will always be there to support and encourage us when we're hit with fear of failure, God is also reminding us through Isaiah that we are not alone. In fact, God is working and walking with all of us every step of the way.
One of the things I like to tell my children is, when you're dealing with different fears -- fear of failure, fear of endless changes, fear of being alone -- it's like sitting in a parked car with the ignition off, waiting for the car to take you somewhere. We know we've got work to do, but we are so paralyzed because we're not confident as eternal sons and daughters. We have so much doubt about our abilities that we don't believe we can succeed. We are our own worst enemies.
We tell ourselves that we have to drive somewhere while not making the effort to turn on the ignition, to change gears from Park to Drive, and step on the pedal. These are the things we need to do. God might give us a car, but we have got to drive it. When we're driving the car in new areas we're not familiar with, we might be overcome by the fear of endless changes, constantly shifting scenarios and situations that we have to deal with.
But let's understand that God puts all these different scenarios and these obstacles right in front of us for us to tackle; the Bible tells us that God does this to strengthen and harden us to the difficulties. It's like going through growing pains. Instead of fighting the pain, we can embrace the pain, understanding that pain is a necessary process that we need to go through to become stronger and harder. Then we can overcome with the positive understanding of what life is all about.
When I was teaching my kids how to drive, one thing that would freak them out is that after going through the different routines of learning how to parallel park, how to go in reverse, how to do the turns and the hand signals, I would get out of the car and say, "Now practice." That would set them into a tizzy, saying, "No, don't leave me. Don't leave me in this car all by myself. I need you here with me." Again, there is this fear of being alone.
I think a lot of parents feel that the best way to love their children is always to be there for them. We understand that as keeping them captive in our homes. Often we give them a list of things they cannot do -- cannot go out partying, cannot go out with their friends, cannot date -- but we fail to give them a list of all the things that they can do. "You can work hard and become the president of the United States. You can practice the piano so you can play like Reverend Cotter. Or you can practice your painting so you can be like Van Gogh."
Often a body stricken with fear is very closed in. One of the things my two children learned in the process of becoming concert pianists was something their teacher worked with them on, day in and day out. She called it mental conditioning. She told them, "You have to let go of your fear. You have to do the opposite of what your body is wanting you to do. When you see something scary, you tense up, but what you need to do if you want to become a great concert pianist or great artist is to surrender to your art." The way I understand it, we need to surrender to our Heavenly Parent and allow him and her to use us as vessels through which different people can experience this beautiful language of love.
As parents, we feel good about ourselves when we restrict our kids and tell them all the things they cannot do. We tell them to prepare for battle: "Life is a battle. Life is about dealing with failures, and you have to keep your dukes up high." But doing our job correctly means teaching children to understand the value of the vertical relationship they need to have with their parents but also the horizontal. The education process for kindergarteners is vastly different from that for high school students. You would never take a kindergartener and say, "Now you're going to work on a tutorial with the professor." But one of the privileges of being a great student in high school is you get to be in a symposium or colloquium or tutorial with your professor.
As the kids grow, if we can do our job and educate them the proper way, then we need to encourage our kids to go out, to not always stay in under our security blanket. We should be the ones saying, in a good way, "Get out. Reach your personal destiny. Be the great person you need to be," instead of thinking, "Oh my goodness. Fear of failure. What if my child goes to college? She's so beautiful, he's so handsome; there are many, many men, many women out there."
Hello! The world is full of beautiful men and women, but if we do our job of educating our children to the best of our ability, at some point we have to let them go. Letting them go gives them room to come back and to deal with us, not just as little kindergarteners but as adults, as dignified, confident adults. Isn't that what we as parents want for our children?
We want them to be better than us. We want them to be infused by the spirit so that they feel they can spread their wings and fly, not try to fly with their wings constricted or chopped off.
Another fear that I've tackled in my life of faith is the fear of making the wrong decision. Religion often stresses right and wrong so heavily; it's so ironclad that you are actually afraid to make a choice or to decide for yourself, exercising your free will, because you're so afraid of making the wrong decision.
We allow ourselves to revert back to our comfort zone because we don't want to try anything new, we don't want to try anything uncomfortable, and we don't want to try anything we did not do before. But the incredible thing about being a parent is that you realize you are constantly up against different brick walls that we've never anticipated. Sometimes when I'm so engulfed in making the right decision for one particular child, I'm almost anxious to the point that I can't make any decision.
This is the time when we need to realize what Isaiah tells us. God says that "despite all the difficulties, I will help you." He says, "Yes, I will help you, and I will support you." God wants to remind us, provoke us to say yes right along with him and her. If God is saying, "I will help you," yes, I know God will help me. If I know God is saying, "I will support you," yes, I know God is there to support me.
This fear of making the wrong decision stems from feelings of insecurity and self-doubt. When we bring God into our lives and we know that God will be there to support, meaning he and she will not leave us alone, and when God is there to support us, it means propping us up, maybe holding us at times. Then all we need to do is really surrender and listen to our heart.
One thing I noticed in the course of my life is that sometimes the brain says one thing but the heart says something else. Because we've been conditioned to think things through (which is a very important thing), then we rely so heavily on our mind that we forget to feel. What our movement has gone through the last two decades is that we know interfaith work, reaching out, and all the other things that we need to do are the right things to do, but what I found lacking in our movement is the ability to feel. We don't feel that initial spark that we all felt.
The great thing about having the district directors here was that I got to see them perform at the open mike. Music is really quite amazing. I didn't know we had such great talent. I was really surprised to see Reverend Swearson with a guitar. He sounds like Johnny Cash. He was singing a lovely acoustic rendition of "One World, One Heart," and I thought, "No wonder our Second Generation is so talented!"
And I saw Reverend Hernandez performing his own creation, a song he wrote when he was 19 years old. Watching you perform the song you wrote at 19 took us all the way back to when you were 19. I felt your heart and experienced what you must have been going through, the whole excitement of meeting True Parents for the first time. That is an incredibly beautiful thing that we need to be reminded of. We need to feel that we are doing something incredibly important -- not just know it, but feel it.
Now we are so lucky that True Parents have designated the youngest son as the spiritual heir of the movement. Father is taking away all the guesswork, making it very, very clear. Some of the things he's doing in Korea are quite revolutionary, just like some of the things we are doing here are quite different.
Let's unite and take the blessing as a total package, not slicing and dicing because we know better, but just surrender to God and feel the heart of God that he and she wants to share with us, letting the transmission of the heart be unadulterated, letting that transmission be pure and clear.
I feel that if I can have the support of all the good brothers and sisters all around the country, we are on the verge of doing incredible things this year. I can feel it. So let us be the kind of movement where we think about the legacy we'd like to leave behind. I would not like our movement to leave a legacy of fear; I would like all of us to leave behind a legacy of love.
In Deuteronomy, the Good Book says, "I have put before you life and death. Choose life." [Deuteronomy 30:19] Here at Lovin' Life, we are choosing life. We are choosing to love life. We are choosing to be grateful for the total package that God wants to share with us. If we can receive it wholeheartedly and unite with it, there's an incredible miracle that is taking place every day and will only exponentially grow.
When I spend some private time with our True Father, sometimes he closes his eyes, and says, "Ah-merry-ca." There's this incredible love, a longing for your incredible love. "Ah-merry-ca." Every time I hear my father say that, I'm thinking, America should be a merry country. We need to be happy. We need to be happy for this opportunity to love each other, to move and be moved by each other, to love and be loved by each other.
Father says, "Ah-merry-ca." Ca in Korean means "go." So go merrily. Go happily. God gave this country a great name, so let's start embodying it. Let's start living it, and let's start being grateful for everything that we have. We have to decide today to be an agent of change, to release all our fears and surrender to God, surrender to our True Parents. With that foundation of faith, incredible things are just waiting around the corner for all of us to harvest and enjoy.
So God bless, and thank you.
1: Listen to me in
silence, O coastlands; let the peoples renew their strength;
let them approach, then let them speak;
let us together draw near for judgment.
2: Who stirred up one
from the east
whom victory meets at every step?
He gives up nations before him,
so that he tramples kings under foot;
he makes them like dust with his sword,
like driven stubble with his bow.
3: He pursues them and
passes on safely,
by paths his feet have not trod.
4: Who has performed
and done this,
calling the generations from the beginning?
I, the LORD, the first,
and with the last; I am He.
5: The coastlands have
seen and are afraid,
the ends of the earth tremble;
they have drawn near and come.
6: Every one helps his
and says to his brother, "Take courage!"
7: The craftsman
encourages the goldsmith,
and he who smooths with the hammer him who strikes the anvil,
saying of the soldering, "It is good";
and they fasten it with nails so that it cannot be moved.
8: But you, Israel, my
Jacob, whom I have chosen,
the offspring of Abraham, my friend;
9: you whom I took from
the ends of the earth,
and called from its farthest corners,
saying to you, "You are my servant,
I have chosen you and not cast you off";
10: fear not, for I
am with you,
be not dismayed, for I am your God;
I will strengthen you, I will help you,
I will uphold you with my victorious right hand.
11: Behold, all who are
incensed against you
shall be put to shame and confounded;
those who strive against you
shall be as nothing and shall perish.
12: You shall seek
those who contend with you,
but you shall not find them;
those who war against you
shall be as nothing at all.
13: For I, the LORD
hold your right hand;
it is I who say to you, "Fear not,
I will help you."
14: Fear not, you worm
you men of Israel!
I will help you, says the LORD;
your Redeemer is the Holy One of Israel.
15: Behold, I will make
of you a threshing sledge,
new, sharp, and having teeth;
you shall thresh the mountains and crush them,
and you shall make the hills like chaff;
16: You shall winnow
them and the wind shall carry them away,
and the tempest shall scatter them.
And you shall rejoice in the LORD;
in the Holy One of Israel you shall glory.
17: When the poor and
needy seek water,
and there is none,
and their tongue is parched with thirst,
I the LORD will answer them,
I the God of Israel will not forsake them.
18: I will open rivers
on the bare heights,
and fountains in the midst of the valleys;
I will make the wilderness a pool of water,
and the dry land springs of water.
19: I will put in the
wilderness the cedar,
the acacia, the myrtle, and the olive;
I will set in the desert the cypress,
the plane and the pine together;
20: that men may see
may consider and understand together,
that the hand of the LORD has done this,
the Holy One of Israel has created it.
21: Set forth your
case, says the LORD;
bring your proofs, says the King of Jacob.
22: Let them bring
them, and tell us
what is to happen.
Tell us the former things, what they are,
that we may consider them,
that we may know their outcome;
or declare to us the things to come.
23: Tell us what is to
that we may know that you are gods;
do good, or do harm,
that we may be dismayed and terrified.
24: Behold, you are
and your work is nought;
an abomination is he who chooses you.
25: I stirred up one
from the north, and he has come,
from the rising of the sun, and he shall call on my name;
he shall trample on rulers as on mortar,
as the potter treads clay.
26: Who declared it
from the beginning, that we might know,
and beforetime, that we might say, "He is right"?
There was none who declared it, none who proclaimed,
none who heard your words.
27: I first have
declared it to Zion,
and I give to Jerusalem a herald of good tidings.
28: But when I look
there is no one;
among these there is no counselor
who, when I ask, gives an answer.
29: Behold, they are
all a delusion;
their works are nothing;
their molten images are empty wind.
1: "And when all these things come upon you, the blessing and the curse, which I have set before you, and you call them to mind among all the nations where the LORD your God has driven you,
2: and return to the LORD your God, you and your children, and obey his voice in all that I command you this day, with all your heart and with all your soul;
3: then the LORD your God will restore your fortunes, and have compassion upon you, and he will gather you again from all the peoples where the LORD your God has scattered you.
4: If your outcasts are in the uttermost parts of heaven, from there the LORD your God will gather you, and from there he will fetch you;
5: and the LORD your God will bring you into the land which your fathers possessed, that you may possess it; and he will make you more prosperous and numerous than your fathers.
6: And the LORD your God will circumcise your heart and the heart of your offspring, so that you will love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul, that you may live.
7: And the LORD your God will put all these curses upon your foes and enemies who persecuted you.
8: And you shall again obey the voice of the LORD, and keep all his commandments which I command you this day.
9: The LORD your God will make you abundantly prosperous in all the work of your hand, in the fruit of your body, and in the fruit of your cattle, and in the fruit of your ground; for the LORD will again take delight in prospering you, as he took delight in your fathers,
10: if you obey the voice of the LORD your God, to keep his commandments and his statutes which are written in this book of the law, if you turn to the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul.
11: "For this commandment which I command you this day is not too hard for you, neither is it far off.
12: It is not in heaven, that you should say, `Who will go up for us to heaven, and bring it to us, that we may hear it and do it?'
13: Neither is it beyond the sea, that you should say, `Who will go over the sea for us, and bring it to us, that we may hear it and do it?'
14: But the word is very near you; it is in your mouth and in your heart, so that you can do it.
15: "See, I have set before you this day life and good, death and evil.
16: If you obey the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you this day, by loving the LORD your God, by walking in his ways, and by keeping his commandments and his statutes and his ordinances, then you shall live and multiply, and the LORD your God will bless you in the land which you are entering to take possession of it.
17: But if your heart turns away, and you will not hear, but are drawn away to worship other gods and serve them,
18: I declare to you this day, that you shall perish; you shall not live long in the land which you are going over the Jordan to enter and possess.
19: I call heaven and earth to witness against you this day, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and curse; therefore choose life, that you and your descendants may live,
20: loving the LORD your God, obeying his voice, and cleaving to him; for that means life to you and length of days, that you may dwell in the land which the LORD swore to your fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, to give them."