Orthodox -- Unification Dialogue -- Constantine N. Tsirpanlis Editor 1981
My topic is "Salvation as Restoration in Unification Thought." I am grateful to all three speakers, especially to Dr. Matczak and Dr. Tsirpanlis because they have already introduced some of the main concepts: that of the fall of man and of the principle of restoration. Also, Dr. Matczak's probing questions to Dr. Tsirpanlis have helped to set the stage for my talk.
Divine Principle can be seen as a means to help usher in salvation. The first question I want to raise then is, what is new about the understanding of salvation it offers?
Divine Principle includes a new doctrine of creation and what may be a new doctrine of the fall of man. I would like to first point out some important aspects of the principle of creation. Then I will discuss the fall and show how both of these relate to salvation as restoration.
Central in Divine Principle's explanation of creation is a concept of God's polarity, the dual characteristics of God's nature. God is thought to contain polarities of internal character and external form as well as masculinity and femininity. God is seen then as a Father and Mother. He has both aspects. That is very important for our understanding of salvation.
Another principle of creation is the principle of give-and-take action. Since everything in creation also consists of relationships between polarities, such as the relationship between proton and electron, there is an energy flow of give and take. That energy flow brings about unity, as seen in protons and electrons forming an atom. In essence this explains that Divine Principle sees things relationally and organically -- because everything is related through give-and-take action.
A third principle is the four position foundation. God, through His original nature, expresses Himself in His creation as polarities, dual aspects; we can call these subject and object pairs. These pairs can unite through give-and-take action, and in that relationship, life can be sustained and action and multiplication can occur.
Now, God gave man three blessings at the beginning -- to be fruitful, to multiply, and to have dominion over the creation. According to Divine Principle, this is the purpose of life. The perfect individual has God at the center, the mind in the subjective position, and the body in the objective position. To be fruitful means to be perfect as an individual, mind and body completely relating in harmony to one another, creating over time a perfect man. This man, as he comes into complete union with God, has deity; he becomes a temple of God; God dwells in him. So you could call him God in the body, Incarnated God, or Incarnated Word of God, or even God. Such a man was God's original idea.
Still, a perfect individual cannot be the complete image of God, because there's masculinity and femininity in God. Therefore, a man and woman together form a complete image. After reaching perfection as individuals, they form a perfect family by coming together and having children. So, the likeness of God is not attained by one individual alone, but through the relationship between a man and a woman. It is expressed in the love between them and towards their children.
Out of that would grow finally the kingdom of heaven, first centering on a family, expanding to a nation, and finally forming a worldwide family. The purpose of life is love. The give-and-take action between the positions should be love. Love is the center of the whole universe and the guiding force of God. In addition to the perfect unity between human beings, man is also to form a perfect union with the creation. Man, representing the masculine aspects, and woman, representing the feminine aspects of all creation, can together come into complete harmony with all of the creation, forming the perfect universe. This is the third ideal -- man having dominion over the creation through love. Only as a person truly comes to know love as a child, as a husband or a wife, and as a father or a mother, can that person become truly capable of dominating the universe through love.
The fulfillment of these three blessings brings about the kingdom of heaven on earth. This was God's original ideal or intention: for this He created Adam and Eve.
The next point I would like to mention is the growth period. The ideal of the kingdom of heaven cannot be achieved at once; it takes time. Growth is part of creation. Man grows through a formation, growth and completion stage, finally reaching perfection. Similarly, there is evening, night, and morning for the new day to come about. So things are being completed in creation by going through three stages.
There is an important difference between man and other beings, however. All things of creation achieve their perfection automatically through the autonomous power of the principle which is at work innately in every animal, in every seed, in everything. Man, although he has this innate power, this autonomous principle, also has responsibility to achieve his perfection by having faith in God's commandment as the guiding Word. Attaining perfection is not automatic for man, but a process involving freedom and responsibility. In comparison to God, to give a figure for man's portion of responsibility, it is 5%, whereas God's portion is 95%. Even though God is providing the whole universe as a foundation, man finally by himself, by his freedom, has to complete God's ideal. When man reaches perfection, he will come under the direct dominion of God. That means, God will direct man through His love. Also, man will direct the creation through his love. This is the direct dominion of God over man and man over creation. Therefore, God, man, and creation will become completely one through the power of love.
Second, I would like to explain briefly the fall of man. Actually, much was already done by Dr. Matczak and Dr. Tsirpanlis.
Adam and Eve were to reach perfection but on the way to perfection, as you know, Adam and Eve fell. They could not reach perfection because they gave in to the temptation of satan -- first Eve, and then Adam. Divine Principle does not just rely upon disobedience in explaining the fall. The question is, what's the motivating force behind disobedience? In essence, the answer is that Adam and Eve were misguided through satan's love, that is, Lucifer's self-centered love, by uniting with him. The motivating force was fallen love, which resulted in the forming of a four position foundation, not centering on God's love, but on satan's fallen love.
The result of the fall is a human family distorted from God's ideal filling the whole world today. The world does not reflect God's ideal of the kingdom of heaven, but this world is partly an expression of the evil deed of satan. This is important to understand in order to understand Jesus' mission.
God was indeed hurt by man. In Genesis 6:6 we read that God was grieved in His heart, He was sorry that He created man. God was hurt by the fall, yet He does not hate man. He still loves man. His real hurt was not initiated by Adam and Eve, His children, but by Lucifer, the archangel. In Isaiah 46:11 it says, "I have spoken, and I will bring it to pass; I have purposed, and I will do it." This means that God wanted to have a kingdom of heaven on earth -- that was His will, His purpose. Even though satan interfered by establishing hell, this will only be temporary. God will eventually achieve His purpose, which shows God's unchanging mind. He will establish the kingdom of heaven on the earth as He originally intended, because God is perfect.
Now, let us define salvation, or the principle of restoration. The meaning of salvation is to restore the hell we have on earth and in the spirit world into the kingdom of heaven. Salvation can be seen as a process of restoring the lost ideal of God.
Now the question is, what is the principle of that process? What is the principle of restoration? Restoration is not a mysterious process; it can be understood by man. Actually, restoration is re-creation, recreating the ideal which was lost. The principle of restoration follows the principle of creation. That is why I had to mention several aspects of the doctrine of creation. So, indeed, through understanding the principle of creation, how God created the world, we will be able to understand the principle of how He will restore the world. An important notion here is indemnity. It is the central aspect of restoration; restoration follows the law of indemnity.
What is indemnity? When anything has lost its original position or status -- like, the chalk in my hand here falls down to the floor -- then certain conditions must be established to restore the original position. The original position was lost, so it has to be re-established. The loss has to be indemnified. Therefore, restoration is indemnification.
Now, where does the notion of the Messiah come in? The Messiah is a central theme in Christianity. How can we, through reason, arrive at the notion of the Messiah? It is possible. The way the fall took place was by Lucifer tempting Eve -- which was the spiritual fall -- and then Eve tempting Adam -- which was the physical fall. If Adam had not fallen, succumbed to the temptation of Eve, what would have happened? Adam would have remained intact, eventually reaching perfection, becoming the incarnation of God's Word. Then, according to Divine Principle, Adam would have been in a position to restore Eve, and eventually even Lucifer. Adam would have been the Messiah. Why? How is it possible for man to restore man?
Actually, the one who brought about the decline or fall was an angel; and the position of the angel is lower than the position of man. Saint Paul said, "Do you not know that we are to judge angels?" (1 Cor. 6:3) According to the principle of creation, perfect man has great dignity; he is standing right next to God. He is representing God in the creation and can be called "God of Creation." God dwells in man. Man and God are eternally united and inseparable. That kind of man is actually somebody like Jesus, a God-man, the Incarnate Word, and is able to restore and subjugate satan.
Perfect Adam would have had to finally subjugate satan, taking Eve back to God. But how? Adam still possessed the Word of God -- he knew God's commandment. After reaching perfection, Adam would have had perfect love -- God's love -- that Lucifer did not have. Through the Word of God and God's love, Adam could have defeated satan's lies and satan's love, bringing Eve back to God, separating her from satan. Since Adam fell, the process of restoration became very difficult, because first of all, a perfect man, like Adam, a Messiah, had to be restored.
Now, let me explain history from the point of view of restoration. Divine Principle sees history as the providence of restoration, carried out through the means of indemnity.
After the fall God began His restoration work right away in Adam's family. We know that in his family there was a problem between his sons Cain and Abel. Since Adam fell, God lost His dominion over creation, and satan became the god of this world. God's dominion had to be restored to some degree before the Messiah, a sinless man, could come. It had to be taken away from satan and given to God and man. Through the relationship between Cain and Abel, God tried to restore the lost dominion. Cain was the first born and Abel was the second born. Since Lucifer subjugated Adam through the fall, the position of Cain represented Lucifer, and that of Abel represented Adam. To indemnify the fall those two positions had to be united under God. Therefore, we read in the Bible that Abel had the blessing of God even though he was younger. Cain wanted the blessing too. However, instead of getting it by uniting with Abel, he eventually killed Abel in his jealousy, repeating in essence the act of Lucifer, who wronged Adam.
The Cain-Abel relationship appears as a paradigm again and again throughout history. The relationship of Esau and Jacob is similar. God tried to restore His lost dominion through a condition of indemnity between Jacob and Esau. Jacob, the second brother, with the help of his mother, took the birthright, the blessing, that Isaac, the father, had intended to give to Esau. Esau became angry, and wanted to kill his brother. Therefore, Jacob had to flee to Haran. He eventually came back, however, with great blessings, and was able, through his love for his brother, to subjugate satan symbolically by winning his brother's love. This restored the dominion of God in the family.
Since the world had expanded, though, the foundation that Esau and Jacob laid was not enough for God to be able to send the Messiah. Satan at that time did not just dominate one family, but dominated nations. That is why God sent the Israelites into Canaan to create a nation representing Adam. We know there were many problems in Israel. Therefore, the Messiah could not come right away. Eventually, however, at the time of John the Baptist, the foundation was laid and God was able to intervene in the world by creating a sinless man, Jesus.
We know that Jesus came 2,000 years ago. Divine Principle says that Jesus' intention was to build the kingdom of heaven on earth by establishing the three blessings -- perfect individuality, perfect family, and perfect world and universe, because that was God's original ideal. Now that did not depend alone on Jesus. First He Himself had to become perfect. Next, He had to build a perfect family to restore the love distorted by the first family of Adam. For this He had to set the prime example of a perfect Son in His relationship with God, of a perfect Husband in relationship to His wife, and then of a perfect Parent in relationship to His children. Jesus was the only one capable of doing this. The purpose of Jesus' coming was to establish the first family centered on God as the foundation for the kingdom of heaven on earth.
First, Jesus had to struggle against satan, to gain dominion on an individual level. Next, He had to set up a family. In order to do that He needed the protective support of a nation that would cherish that family and sustain it. Finally, through that nation he would have brought the ideal to the whole world, literally building the kingdom of heaven on earth. In order to accomplish this, Israel would have had to follow Him; that is why God prepared the Israelites for 2,000 years -- not to kill Jesus. If God's will was that they kill Jesus, He would not have needed to raise a people.
In relationship to Jesus, John the Baptist was a very important man. He represented Israel. He was six months older than Jesus. In the position of Cain, John the Baptist was supposed to bring the whole of Israel to Jesus, who was in the position of Abel. He was to prepare Israel and pass the blessing on to Jesus by following Him. Yes, he recognized Jesus, but finally he did fail because he couldn't make up his mind who Jesus really was. Therefore, he could not follow Jesus. We can see clear evidence in the Bible to support that position. Israel did not unite with Jesus, meaning the second Adam could not restore the dominion of God, so Jesus lost His foundation on earth. Israel opposed Jesus, eventually killing Him. Satan was able to take God's people to his side and destroy the Son of God on earth.
The Crucifixion symbolizes two things: on the one hand, it is a victory, because Jesus Himself did not give in to satan, even on the cross: He forgave His people. He was not subjugated in spirit. Even though God left Him ("My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?") Jesus kept His faith in God, and because of this God could resurrect Jesus and create a spiritual realm, called Paradise, free of the dominion of satan.
Another aspect of restoration concerns the Trinity. Originally God's intention was for Adam and Eve to establish a Trinity with God in the center. Adam and Eve were to represent God on the earth, being the Incarnated Word of God. This is called, in Divine Principle terms, the Original Trinity. Based on this Trinity, God wanted to set up the kingdom of heaven on earth. The Trinity plus the children of Adam and Eve would make up the four position foundation, this being the fundamental foundation for God's kingdom. That Trinity failed because Adam and Eve united with the will of satan, which brought about the fallen trinity. Satan, therefore, used the same principle to set up his kingdom of hell on the earth and in the spirit world. Jesus came as the second Adam, trying to fulfill God's original ideal for the Trinity but He could not set it up on earth due to the cross. On the foundation of Jesus' faith, however, despite the failure of the people, God was able to give Him the Holy Spirit, representing restored Eve on a spiritual level. The position of Jesus and the Holy Spirit in the spirit world is one of parents towards the Christians, who by accepting Jesus and the Holy Spirit, are able to receive parental love. That love, generated by Jesus and the Holy Spirit, is able to restore man. By believing in the Trinity, indeed God's spirit can work to purify and help man grow.
Yet Christians cannot achieve complete perfection. As Saint Paul said, they are bound to a sinful state. The reason is that the kingdom of heaven on earth was not set up by Jesus. In order to bring about God's ideal on the earth, the Messiah must come again to establish the ideal family on earth, He being the first perfect man, husband, and father, and His bride being the first perfect woman, wife, and mother.
In the position of True Parents They would represent God. Mankind, centering on the Lord of the Second Advent and His bride, would then receive perfect love. Through the love of the True Parents, mankind would come to realize the highest standard of love in human relationships.
We need to know what God's ideal is. We need to have an example of God's ideal on earth in order for us to become like God. So indeed, the Lord of the Second Advent and His bride would restore the position of Adam and Eve by establishing the kingdom of God on earth through the fulfillment of the three blessings, as was originally intended by God.
This is Divine Principle understanding. I'm open to questions now. I know there might be many questions, especially from our Orthodox brothers.