Unity In Diversity - Essays in religion by members of the faculty of the Unification Theological Seminary - Edited by Henry O. Thompson - 1984

God, Suffering and Hope: A Unification View -- John Andrew Sonneborn

Unification theology depicts God as the immutable Creator Who, wholly loving and responsive, suffers as a consequence of human recalcitrance yet is potent and ultimately victorious, fully worthy of worship. The theological interfacing of immutable sovereignty with suffering is importantly paradigmatic for the response to suffering of Unification believers in their personal and evangelical life.

In this essay the Divine response to suffering (given the existence of unnecessary evil and human suffering) is elaborated theologically as rational and just, and is brought to bear on selected crucial topics of traditional Christianity (e.g., justification, transcendence and immanence, freedom, love, omnipotence, desire and need), a philosophy of suffering is developed, and various theories of Divine and/or human suffering are reported and reflected upon.

There is an over-all flow of thought in the essay. It may be simply stated. God is the Creator. There is evil in the creation. What will God do? How will God do it? What does it mean for God? What would God have us do?

In the essay's four parts are presented, essentially: 1. the Creator's immutabilities remaining in the face of evil; 2. the nature of the suffering Creator's appropriate outward response toward a world with sin and evil, of God's potent remedial action; 3. that the Redeemer God is the transcendent and immanent Creator enables the effectiveness of his remedial action, the content of the redemptive way of love being specified; 4. that God (successfully depending upon human cooperation) will succeed in the permanent abolition of personal suffering. Thus, we will present God as the basis of hope, having created in love and working in love to end suffering, and will indicate the nature of the effectiveness of God's working, of the sureness of God's total triumph, and the responsibility of humans having faith in God.

The presentation is in accordance with an understanding of the basic insights of the Unification Movement which was initiated by the Reverend Sun Myung Moon. Its standard philosophical analysis of God-in-Himself1 is probably most clearly stated in Sang-Hun Lee's essay, "God in the Unification View" in S. A. Matczak (ed.), God in Contemporary Thought. We will at this point preliminarily set forth in condensed formula some aspects of our concepts regarding God-in-relationship.

We view God as with a fundamental relational impulse, Who became Creator of all else that is, Who has remained in loving relationship to His creation, and Whose dynamic is for the continuing development of creation and extension of relationships through incorporation of unions as foundations in greater unions according to a determined scenario. The universal patterns of interaction, union and development are explained in Dr. Lee's essay2. Man is viewed as in this image of God, with the same fundamental impulse and relationality while being a creature participant, in himself and with others, in the foundational scenaric development. The whole creation is so formed that new or greater entities are formed through interactions of paired entities mediating God's creative action and drawing power into the combined entity formed.

God's being logically precedes His purpose for acting which precedes His design of creation. "After" creation and through time the essence of God remains the same. This is the God of love which is the source of life, acting as love and for development of value in the beloved. God's purpose of creation is itself wholly insubstantial and His Word and force exist originally in a dimension beyond the cosmos. For substantial creation, God's love must be mediated through the creative "thinking and practice" of an entity in creation.

A series of responding interactions in creation begins inwardly with the stimulation of man's original mind. God's love has been received when a human acts with love towards interaction and sharing with another. However, God is the Creator of the substantial cosmos, and full response requires interaction of two substantial beings with a result of value for God's further creating, actualizing God's love. Thus a full response of God is cooperative and includes the openness to further loving.

(Often, in the essay a thinker is cited or represented; unless otherwise evident, representation of his or her views is concluded in the sentence containing the citational footnote.)

I. God's Immutabilities

A. Perspective of God as Creator

God is understood as the Creator. There is disunity in the creation. Before we consider the Creator's response to the disunity we consider the perspective of the Creator, His motivation, eternity and joy.

1. God of heart: desire of heart, creation, desire. According to the Unification Principle, the essential feature of God is heart, the impulse which seeks joy and desires to give love to an object.3 God with this desire then has the self-experience of the desire. Then from the self-experience of the desire to give love to an object and find joy arises the desire to create the object.

In Aristotle's view,4 the perfection of God lies partly in His not being One needing friends. We simply state that God desires to create an object for relationship. We can think of the Creator God as prior to creation but not as a creator who will not create. God desires relationships. What appears presently at stake is that if desire is not of the essence of God, then man in God's image is essentially reactive.

God, seeking joy, has created responding objects. He has, in fact, created living objects, including man who fully shares His creativity.5

These concepts of God are also appropriate inference from an account of creation in which creaturely development is characterized by increasing continuity of special relationships. This is true of individual development and of development in history. Taking responsibility for juniors and offspring became characteristic of the more developed species. Man generally feels and seeks unending special relationships.

God, to joy fully in the response of His object, must create the object in His direct image and therefore His object also must love and receive joy before God's joy is full. Further, the object in the image of God the Creator must fully exercise its creativity for God's joy.

God cannot duplicate Himself as His own object. God is unique and omnipresent. He created beings distinct in space. The mutual relating of these beings requires periods of time. Then when God gives love and seeks a response of relating within the creation as well as to Himself, that response may conclude only in the future. There will be the process of stimulation, period of inner response, and outward response. (This two-staged responding is given philosophical form in Unification Thought, pp. 17-26 which is summarized in Lee's essay, p. 747.)

God Who is the Creator seeks joy and desires to give love to His creatures and find receptive and active response.

2. God of heart: desire, purpose, plan, power, action. God may not cause his own extinction nor alter His essential nature. Then we may say that God's desire to give love and find response is ineradicable.

Many peoples with "primitive" views of God(s) were concerned that their God might cease from desire for the loving relationship. This was a concern of the people of the Bible even to the times of Hosea and Deutero-Isaiah.6 Nevertheless, the perdurable human love of those in relationship is a basis of the religion of the Jews. According to Jewish tradition, Cain could not kill his relationship with Abel, Noah was impelled to attempt the salvation of those who mocked him, Abraham went to the rescue of Lot who had left him, Jacob made great gifts to the hostile Esau, and Joseph experienced redemptive love for his brothers who had sent him towards death.7

In the stories of Abraham, Jacob and Joseph, man is shown as not a mere animal, but as created in the direct image of God with ineradicable love. Yet, Christians believe, Jesus found it necessary to preach extensively on God's perduring love,8 with the absolute proof being given through crucifixion, resurrection and salvation.9 (A relevant clarification of perdurable love demonstrated in the climactic event of Jesus' life is given in Y. W. Kim, Divine Principle Study Guide.10)

God's primary will is to fulfill his desire. His activity is purposeful toward the fulfillment.

This activity cannot be wholly random (else "Creator" and "God" would be inappropriately applied to Him). Then we consider God's Logos or Word. God has a plan for accomplishing His purpose. According to Genesis, God, conceiving an ideal in which His loving would find response, expressed a scenario in which humans should become mature, multiply, and come to govern other creatures.11 Jewish and Christian philosophical theologians since Hellenistic times have generally considered this scenario a segment of a scenario of creation from its inception to its full realization. In the usual Judeo-Christian view, God will in no wise alter his Word.12

God will not withdraw His plan: it is for the fulfillment of His desire. Further, God must not be a mere designer of creatures and their development but must be an exerciser of power towards the realization of His plan (else, again, He could not be called "Creator" and "God").

That God has ineradicable desire and irrevocable will to accomplish the purpose of fulfilling the desire according to unalterable scenario of lasting mediational relationships and that He has created beings according to His Word and should continue to act towards realization of the scenario, is appropriate to the Unification view of the God of heart.

3. God of vision. God, having created, being the author of the cosmos, "knows" (through self-knowledge) its constitution. He "sees" exact opportunities for action. He knows His purposes and the ends He seeks. In every human situation He knows the interactions which can fulfill a step in the desired foundational sequence of development. He knows the conditions in the scenario to be accomplished, definitive increases in the scope of union. God always sees His correct action towards His desired result.

Also, God sees that only action initiated by Him will achieve change towards the desired result, else there will be an increase of disunity.

God knew in principle the dynamics of action and result. Acting into the cosmos, he experienced the actual result of actions. He created the non-human creatures and the innocent humans, all of who m responded fully to His action and returned joy. Then, He experienced, sinful humans failed of sought response (certain interactions between created beings). However, God sees that even if His action be directly largely fruitless it is ultimately effective towards His goal, and that in the future He will give to greater reception, will give more life.

The Bible records that after humans first had violated God's commandment, He was near them, called to them simply, spoke with them simply, and acted to give them clothes of animal skin.13 When the Kingdom of God is established on earth He will take full and increasingly powerful actions enabling complex interactions.

God sees the way to His goal; He visions the significant levels of unification and the mode of action for foundational unification, and understands the combinations of actions for realization of His scenario.

4. God of sureness. God is sure that there is opportunity for change resulting from right action. (This is true despite the disunity in the cosmos.) We state, although we have not shown it as logically required, that God knows that His power will always be sufficient that opportunities for truly developmental change in the cosmos will continue to occur.

God desires to act, knows the desired activity, sees that there will be opportunity for action with some response and that the result of the response will be a foundation in a sequence of desired changes. God is sure of total victory, the definite realization of His primary will, the accomplishment of His whole purpose. This latter statement is our assumption; it will be important later in the essay to validate it.

God's indestructible sureness is that right action is always foundational towards His ideal to be realized.

5. God of just loving. Having sight and assurance, God always acts with justice, that is, He gives love appropriately, offering both maintenance and maximum advance towards the fulfillment of all. God acts with rightly purposed love and respecting the inner responsiveness of his objects. God acts and awaits the response.

With inorganic or non-human organic beings, God awaits response, but the beings are bound by the principle of creation to respond. With man, God's action of rightly purposed love is an offer. God desires man's totally free response because he wills fully contributory creativity.

God always wills the development of unity. But with man, God's actions may find resistance. In the inner responding of a human subject or object may occur the temporary rejection of part of God's offer. The resistance may stem from false valuation. It may stem from addiction to alternative response.

Even a temporary rejection of God's offer causes separation of man from God, that is, man does not then function as one with God, passing on all the love received and returning joy to God. This separation causes God to suffer.

God creates through just love offering development of unity. The offer can be and has been disdained, partly, only by distracted man.

6. God of just loving: His suffering. When man rejects God's offer of love, a foundation is not laid, joy is not returned to God, He is not presented with the opportunity for greater giving of love. Instead, there is disunity of God and man. Interhuman relations of love face dissipation and distortion. Also, on rejecting God's spiritual guidance, man is prone to cause disorganization of the physical. Thus, when God offers love to man, He faces the possibility of suffering.

Brunner conceives that in eternity God, "in Himself," the Father, has "no Word, no light, no life."14 Without relating to creation as it is, God is considering only His ideal. Then, it is in relating to creation as it is that God does have life, Word and light, and the creation may depart from them and bring suffering to God's heart. Thus God in engendering the Logos opens the possibility of suffering.

God's Word is unchanging through time, but is communicated progressively in time. God's ideal and His purpose to realize it also remain throughout time. Von Hugel notes that man seeks the timeless and unchanging.15 These are found in God. Yet the ideal is realized, the purpose accomplished only through a process in time, and the ideal will then be expanded through temporal process.

Schopenhauer reasons that the capacity to feel the greatest pain is held by man of all creatures.16 The more far-ranging the creative love, the greater the possible pain. Therefore, God has the capacity for the greatest suffering.

In the sinful world, the rejection of love de facto occurs to some extent; (Solle, 163: "love does not 'require' the cross, but de facto it ends up on the cross.") The extent is variable and it has not been proven that such circumstance is permanent; however, God's love is declined by the unjust. The increase of God's flow of love is then precluded.

God's vision and sureness reach beyond sin. Spurned, how will God act? A general answer must be: continuingly with power and love.

When God's love is not fully mediated for actualization, He cannot continue a development of unity. Man is functionally separated from Him and in further fragmented circumstances. When God perceives this, He finds not joy but great suffering. God's ideal and purpose are changeless and His sight and sureness are transcendent, but his just love has been thwarted.

7. God, Satan. If God is the source of love only properly directed for unification and increase and of the reception of that love, then there is some other cause of the contrariety that is found. We say that Satan, not God, caused contrarient disunification -- isolation and arrogatory maintenance. Such disunity tends toward more disunity.

(Some of the dynamics of disunification will be set forth at various points in this essay: at the end, an account of the origination of Satan. The concern here is the Divine perspective.)

In the normal process of developing unification, where a complex of parts is functioning as a whole, the development may call for separation of some parts externally; but since the development of the whole will not be interrupted there is no significant loss of value. However, development may be halted not only by lack of opportunity for whole action but by severe disunity involving parts. This is separation contrarient to the purpose of the whole. The parts are not responsive to the center of development.

When creation is responding to God, unity is developing. When the work of Satan interferes, parts of the creation are disassembled and a development cannot directly be resumed.

Not all events are fully the will of God. God initiates all activity, and does so for good. But Satan's work is the perversion of God's love and the formation of conditions of unity apart from God's over-all fabric of unification.

God's will for creation is not the cause of suffering. Suffering was not caused by God as a challenge to man. Also, for man, being created through and born by our parents is not the cause of our suffering; it is the cause of our existence as a desiring being. In the face of our desire to give love, conditions of disunity cause suffering.

Satan is the one who caused evil separation and the blocking of development; the unresponsiveness causes suffering. Thus God is continuingly intent to create according to His original plan. God, true desire, and true development do not necessitate nor cause suffering.

8. God's frustration. Satan's partial domination of circumstances makes impossible the acceptance of the fullness of God's love. Man imagines scarcity and is addicted to illusory or short-lived security. In the creation, the mediation of love is hampered by lack of communication, sharing and cooperation.

In Satan's realm, man's faithlessness, addiction, and isolation must resist God's offer.

9. God contravened. Satan tempts circumscribed man and in the event that man succumbs man accuses God and man and newly rejects God. Satan and his human agents stimulate lack of faith in future abundance, offer evil advice of immediate consumption, despair and grasping, and practice seduction. The pattern of sin is repeated, culminating in misappropriation. Cliques are formed to seek power according to other than the highest standard of love available. Lavell writes, "every bad will pursue isolated ends which, sacrificing the whole to the part, always contaminate the integrity of the whole."17

Through Satan's tempting and man's succumbing there is further rejection of love, and sin and misappropriation develop.

Review and prospectus.

Thus far we have seen (i) the Unification view of God as Creator Who, seeking ever-increasing joy, ineradicably desires to give love in relationship with an object and find mediational response, acts according to a permanent scenario for the establishment of His Kingdom on Earth, visions the levels of significant unification towards and sees opportunity for right action ultimately effective towards realization of His ideal, and is sure that there will always be opportunity for truly foundational change.18 God is love respecting the nature of and the inner response of the object. His action of love is an offer to man for response in full freedom, (ii) Man can temporarily reject part of the offer, breaking tunctional unity. This separation and the halting of creation (lack of foundation) must bring suffering, not joy, to God. Thus it was offering love in time according to Word that opened the possibility of suffering for the eternal unchanging Creator, (iii) God and creative desire did not cause disharmonious disassemblement; the scenario is not proven inappropriate. Suffering is caused when created beings enter into conditions of unity which prevent their functioning for God's purpose of the whole. The unities are founded on falsity and they frustrate God's desire for development in creation. Man yields to temptation of false valuation, responds pervertedly to God and forms non-participating unions. Thus God the Creator is confronted with distortions in the creation; the Creator experienced suffering.

We should find if the view of God with these features, this motivation, and these immutabilities is tenable in the light of continuing rejection, distortion and suffering. Can we understand a response of God (with these characteristics) to suffering, one that is consistent with His nature and the nature of the creation, according to revelation and experience, and such that God remains worthy of worship? Through considering alternative conceivable responses to suffering, and their significance, we should further validate our view of God and more deeply understand God and suffering.

To fulfill this, we should show that our view of God affords hope in that God is presented as motivated to sustain distorted creation and to remedy suffering and as justified in doing so, and in that He is immutably capable of ending suffering; that God with the capacity of being Creator has the capacity of being Redeemer.

B. Perspective of the Creator as Redeemer.

God's internal response to the fact of distortion.

1. God unaltered: desire. God's suffering follows from the broken relationship between God and His creation. God feels love and can express love but the love cannot wholly be actualized. This is externally caused suffering; there is no return from without to stimulate God's heart. (Of course, there is some response, at least deep within man. Adam, sinful, according to Genesis 3:8, was not ignorant of God's presence. There is some joy from any response. But there is God's great suffering. In light of this suffering, which nothing in this essay is intended to construe as total, we will not always refer to the joy.) God could not develop His cosmos, it was shattered. Then, why does not God ignore the circumstances? Why does not God abandon creating (and creation), show indifference?

We have said that whether or not we think of God as needing friends, the Creator desired a responding object and created to fulfill that desire, and that the desire is of God's heart, His essential feature. Then, God would not be perfect if the rejection by His object caused Him to alter desire. God must also be less than a perfect creator if he created beings who rejected Him permanently. (But it may be that the best creating was to create the object who might reject Him temporarily, that God so creating can still be seen as perfect. Then the actual fulfillment of the possibility would not alter the fact of His perfection.) God must desire the return of the separated object. Again, this is not "necessity" of God but desire of God Whose essential feature is to seek joy and to give love. When we say that God "must" do something, it is to say that He must do it if He is to achieve His desire of love.

If fundamental desire were to be killed, there would be no pain. If God were to "stop," there would be no suffering. But we must also say that when man thinks of his own "stopping," there emerges from his depths a scream and this is of the greatest suffering, the scream of the suicidal. Since essential desire is unalterable, then mental withdrawal from deep desire is a separation within the desirer, an inner disunity causing suffering. If we have a God who abandons creation or simply waits with no desire, then He has no frustration and no rage. But the consequence for man is that desire is not of the depth of man, and man could also kill desire (or existentially choose to be only sub-human, merely animal, with limited desire), then suicide or narcosis would be a remedy for any suffering.

God's desire is unalterable. God is the source of man's desire and loving, He is the cause of our continuing existence and desiring, and when our deep desire is frustrated we suffer. Also, God is the source of the love which is distorted in Satanic action which causes the conditions which cause the frustration. Thus, there would be no human suffering if there were no God who continues loving. Solle19 concludes that God is justified in loving only if He is suffering, sharing man's suffering; He is also not justified (does not have just love) if He watches suffering now and acts only later to lift it. If God is omnipotent and fully loving but not devoting all adequate force for change, rather waiting until a later time to remedy circumstances causing pain, then we either now cannot contribute to the remediation or else may so contribute only wholly apart from this God (and possibly with some other God). Man seeks a God of victory to end fragmentation. If God's remedial action is to occur only later, it is difficult for man to believe in any forthcoming victory; what evidence would we have? Only intuition? "revelation"? If so, how could we know the revelation as a true revelation? Even a past victorious act of God, even the resurrection of Jesus, for instance, does not prove the ultimate victory of God if He is not acting now towards that end. Meanwhile injustice continues. If God appears inactive now, man may be tempted to seek a "more just" deliverer.

If God is not creating and acting for the removal of obstacles to creation, He is either a God of the past only, or a God bound up in the cycles of nature, or a God apparently disconnected from nature; such a God is not a supernatural God.

One might conceive of a God (and humans) not indifferent to separation and simply bearing separation with great calmness. But the testimony of experience indicates that this is not the reality; none has testified to such a God.

It may also be asked why God does not annihilate the divided creation and commence creating anew. If He were to, He would then have no response to His loving. (A true parent will never wish the annihilation of his most beloved child, no matter how great the recalcitrance.) Whatever receptive condition of unity exists is an objectification of God Himself and a foundation for God's development of unity, of reunification towards resumption of development of creation. God the Creator will never seek the sure lessening of His foundation in His creation.

God's desire is frustrated by man's rejection. The desire of the perfect God remains unaltered and is to be fulfilled ultimately, through man's return, although its absence would end all suffering. To fulfill His desire, God is to continue loving sharing man's suffering and willing to devote all adequate force towards its remedy Supernatural, God is not to destroy, but should act demonstrably in the cosmos toward the end of fragmentation.20

2. God unaltered: supernatural understanding. God knows that His purpose to establish the Kingdom of Heaven on Earth and continue its establishment in expanded form will continue unchanged, as will His force. Thus God's imagination goes beyond the limits imposed by suffering as experienced and foreseen by humans.

God loves life, and since, as mentioned, only God may initiate change towards the result desired by Him, God is not passive. Nor does he simply wait for others to remedy the conditions (which, admittedly, God did not cause), for there would be a conflict within God, a disunity and inner suffering were He to withhold loving help which He has the power to offer.

The way of non-life and that of annihilation being alien to God, He actively seeks change of His creation from death to life. The supernatural understanding of suffering stimulates action for change.

God seeing that although not all His love is received there is opportunity for reception (and hence loving His creation), and knowing of the infinite continuity of His purpose and force, comprehends beyond the limits from suffering to the full reception of love. Perfect vision affords supernatural understanding of suffering which stimulates activity: God loves life, is without passivity, and is unified a solely and unreservedly creative.

3. God unaltered: justice and sureness. "God Who says 'Behold, I make all things new' (Rev. 21:5), cannot himself exist now without suffering over what is old."21 The question then must be, how is God to seek change? For God there are no interactions in which He is beggar; a weak God is not God. Also inappropriate for God, especially in light of His ideal, is any unjust action: coercion (relational action in disrespect of inner process) to achieve more unity, or possession (frustration of inner process) to prevent the worsening of circumstances.

The living future-oriented God must purpose true value. God can value the equivalent rewards of future moments equally with those of the present for He knows now of His presence in future moments. Therefore, God can have a calmness with suffering and this calmness is one with His freedom to act lovingly now and act with more powerful love in the future.

Noro says that God's blessedness consists of His love, perfect without any object.22 We say that God's blessedness, His perfect love, indeed precedes the relationship with the object, in fact created the object, and remains blessed in relationship: the perfect love does not require any remoteness. (In our piety, we call God "Father" and consider that He must be in relationship. A father should be blessed before begetting a child; he might thereafter be blessed in himself, considered apart from the child; but the parent's heart does not ever forget the child.) In contradistinction to Noro who considers that God's suffering would indicate a disturbance of His blessedness,23 we say that God remains blessed while suffering.

In the Near Eastern culture, in contradistinction to major civilizations of the Far East, blessing always indicates readiness to create. This blessedness of the unselfish loving creator is not necessarily blessedness free from frustration from the spurning of love. This blessedness is also not the Hinduistic calmness of the selfless "bearing" of suffering. A sufferer, even if remaining blessed, is yet unfulfilled.

To conceive of the continuing blessedness of the God of love is, as Noro points out (on pp. 4, 316), important to our worship, that we else find no possibility of our blessedness, of any tranquility.

As God is sure of victory despite present oppositions, there is for Hi m no tall into rebellion against the order He has set up, neither is there any despair.

Thus God is wholly free to continue his just loving. Then, where shall He focus His loving? As the cosmos has been created it is only through mankind that all things will come together in unity under God. Therefore, since God does not destroy the creation, He must act for and through man for restoration.24

God, to end suffering, will not beg for change nor act unjustly. Living and eternal, and calm in seeking true value as possible, the suffering Creator is free to act with just love at all times, sure of more potent future action; ultimate victory being assured according to the order as created. God, blessed with perfect love, remains blessed in any relationship, perfect love being indestructible, remaining creative even if spurned. God acts for and through man to bring about the unity of all beings under God.

4. God of action with continuing suffering. God continues in correct loving action in circumstances inclusive of separation and He offers according to the circumstances for the increase of unity and love. But Satan prevents full development. So Satan is the cause of God's continuing to suffer. God "permits" this suffering.

Does this "permission" indicate any passivity of God? Scotus offered a proposition that God is not passive, saying that to be passive means that something more interior is active, whereas God is the first principle.25

Divine Principle points out that activity is always linked with receptivity. No subject exists in a void; activity implies relationship. But relationship is sustained by give and take.26 Once a human is created, with God assuming permanent responsibility for him, God and the human can be considered as in a whole, of which God is interior and the human is exterior. It is urged by Von Hugel that logically God does not have emotions because He has no body.27 But by no greater anthropomorphism, the Church is considered the body of Christ, and, in line with Jesus' statements in John of God dwelling in individual humans, Divine Principle considers the individual also to be the body of God. In line with Brunner's theology,28 at least in time "God for man" has emotion. Then, with Barth, God in Himself is identical with God for man. As do the mental faculties from the body, God, directing man, should be receiving information of condition and activity from man. God is the first but not the only actor. Thus there should be a reciprocal relationship between God and man. (To posit of God "an emotional life" necessarily of joy only, as is characteristic of Thomas and Von Hugel, is to speak only of a state of bliss, not referent to a usage of emotion as linked with sensitivity and to inter-responsiveness with a body.) If God were passive in the sense used by Scotus, there might be a cessation of communication from the requisite more interior or "higher" God. Then there would be diminution of receptivity for "our God" and a consequent diminution of His activity. But since "our God" is the first principle, all His receiving is from those inferior.

That God has no superior seems to be at the heart of the concern for God's aseity. Noro,29 in a discussion based upon Barth's Die Kirchliche Dogmatik 2, 1., suggests that the perfection of God is His aseity; His agape love comes from his aseity; His aseity is required for His freedom. In the Unification view we must show that God always can offer more love and meet any challenge, for He has more love to give, not needing to receive to have it; thus He has perpetual freedom. This is the most interior freedom, the freedom of desire and for giving (Von Hugel: God is not exhausted by creation, incarnation, redemption.30) A full meaning of freedom of loving should embrace receptive opportunity. But with the total inner freedom of original love, God is unchanging in His readiness to give any love. This is the standard sought by Noro and Barth.

There is no restraint from any superior (Satan, who caused suffering, is a creature of God), and, from the inferior, no man can add nor subtract from God's purpose and ideal nor add nor subtract from His force. Although he may find the spurning of His love, God is not essentially changed by suffering. Thus God can be and is fully receptive and fully active. God is not "passive" but He does suffer.

Being God, the suffering Creator cannot annihilate Himself; rather, He continues giving love for increase of unity and love. Activity is always linked with receptivity. As God offers love according to the circumstances and Satan continues to prevent full development he becomes the cause of God's continuing suffering. God is initially active toward all from whom He receives, being in no way passive; God's ideal, purpose and force are not dependent. God is fully active and fully receptive: God has inexhaustible potency for loving and is eternally ready to give more love; He has totally and perpetually the most interior freedom, of original love. He "permits" His suffering and continues essentially unchanged.

5. God of affirmative love. Does God's receptivity and suffering affect the quality of His love? God is not "blind"; He neither thinks nor pretends not to suffer. God loves life so much that He affirms it even if inclusive of suffering. This is to say that God's love for life is not dependent upon conditions. God's love is immutable. Thus God accepts the fact of suffering. This acceptance does not end it as suffering.

God accepts suffering because he is determined upon change and the realization of His ideal. He affirms the abnormally painful life only as temporary. With no affirmation of life, God's love would be inward love only. Then God's Kingdom would be only in a "heaven" wholly apart from any creation. However, heaven is also for humankind. Heaven is not for God Himself but from and with God. God affirms life inclusive of suffering so that God can act creatively.

Loving life unconditionally and unqualifiedly, God perpetually affirms it. God accepts the fact of his real suffering because His love is not only inward and He is determined upon the end of all suffering and the realization of His ideal, the Kingdom of Heaven for God and humanity.

6. God of rationally applied love: His endurance. God's love is directed firmly towards the goal. God has the capacity to endure suffering without alteration of His ultimate purpose or of His giving of love. Solle writes31 that if one has a greater goal of unlimited helping of all, one can have that capacity for suffering which, Nietzsche noted, excludes antipathy, division and resistance. With this firm goal, God's justice is immutable.

God is for humanity. In God is perfect oneness of heart, love, force and ideal. Thus God can endure the limitation of the effectiveness of His forceful offer of love. God's outer freedom is limited; His energy of love is somewhat imprisoned: There is discrepancy between the extent of spiritual and physical power in creation and the opportunity for increase of unity, because the power is fragmented; full opportunity is lacking for the actualization of love. Yet, for God, there is no inner rebellion against this; and there is no inner imprisonment in God: no lapse into any sense of futility, no unwillingness to express His love. God loves Himself and that self is love, and love moves also always outward. God never dies, but God continues without inner limitation to offer true help to all. Thus there is with God no vacillation of the expression of love. God knows the Satanic from the Godly. There is never uncertainty for God, and no self-criticism of His thoughts and actions. There is never, in God, internally caused suffering.

With immutable justice God loves Himself Who is love, being also always for man. There is for God no internally caused suffering: in oneness of heart, love, force and ideal, God distinguishes the Satanic from the Godly, and holding the goal of unlimitedly helping all and committed to the original scenario as the only way of realization of the ideal, God is continuing, willingly and with self- validation, in ceaseless helpful activity.

7. God's will. Weatherhead writes of God's "intentional will."32 This is God's will for direct increase of unification. If God's intentional will had always been followed there would have been no suffering. In the fallen circumstances when God's intentional will is followed God achieves a goal of increased unification without increase of suffering, a diminishment of suffering results. Weatherhead also speaks of God's "circumstantial will." This is God's will where evil conditions have led to resistance of His intentional will.33 In this one sense God wills His suffering to be now: His "circumstantial will" is for actions of love to result in suffering in order to end suffering soonest (it, also, is towards realization of His ultimate will to establish a world of full give and take of love, hence of increase).

8. God's circumstantial will. Because God is firm in His purpose towards His goal, and because He knows what is reaped from sowing, God can exercise creativity under the circumstances of delay and He frames a new strategy with new tactics to achieve the same eventual result. The over-all plan remains unaltered. To accomplish the tactics is God's circumstantial will.

God's circumstantial will, His "new planning," seems to indicate change in God. Many Christian theologians have been among those insisting on the immutability of God. In support of this, Noro34 quotes James 1:17 as saying that God is "the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow or turning." However, an examination of the original wording in context shows that what is really being said is that there is no alloy at the side of God. We have posited God changeless in heart, desire, ideal, purpose, vision, sureness and justice. Barth has emphasized that God is always loving; this is a necessary quality of the Person in whose fellowship man is embraced and loves.35 God must always be presenting Himself for participation in fellowship, offering opportunities for loving. The changelessness of God here is essentially His unlimited loving. If God had not this constancy man's love would be limited and would be no love.

Thus God has the same lovingness, the same purpose, the same project offered for man's participation. God has the same over-all plan. Yet in each planning for founding the same successive stages of unification and extension of love the specific detail would accord with the actualities of the relationship in which the love is being offered.

God's desire has always been to act with and through man towards His goal. Hence, when man does not respond God suffers and so knows man's suffering. God's knowledge is not abstract and not magical. God then knows that He must suffer with man.

According to God's circumstantial will, God is to give love, working in such foundational conditions of unity as exist yet among circumstances with the dynamic of increase of disunity. His will is to replace the conditions tending towards disunity with conditions of unity in which God can work, foundations for God's greater work.

Lewis36 wrote that God does not prevent evil but actively opposes it and seeks to destroy it. In the Unification perspective, we speak of a good condition as one conducive to God's further magnification. Identically, in Genesis 1, whenever God has proclaimed a condition to be good, further action for development can occur. An evil condition, then, is one preclusive of development, one in which God cannot work. To destroy an evil is to disorganize the evil condition for re-organization of the parts as a good condition. God's motivation is not any revulsion at the evil, but He seeks restoration in order to have his rejected love received.

Suffering experienced by God consequent to His expression of love according to His circumstantial will is God's "voluntary suffering." It is received during the course of a series of actions restoring conditions as foundations for God's work. God does not wait for suffering to vanish (for the estranged to return to unity with Him); rather, He acts according to opportunity and at all times for salvation. Since the accomplishment of God's circumstantial will depends on the free will of man, any instance of God's willing may be refused. Then the deeper suffering is prolonged.

But suffering will in any case not be ended until there is the unity of all. God is sure that some human will sometime someplace cooperate with His circumstantial willing for the establishment of a foundation and that His intentional will for establishing the next greater scope of unity will likewise be accomplished, and that there will thus be successive preparations and developments with the whole unity ultimately attained. Thus any suffering coming to God in the process of circumstantial volition, whether from accomplishment of His will or from disobedience of it, is to be endured in light of the dream for the whole. God will establish a cosmos in which evil can never occur. This cosmos will be governed by God and humans who are freely bonded in mutually satisfying developmental reciprocal relationships centered on God. This "new" cosmos will be constructed from the present reality. It is nowhere else to be fabricated.

With constancy God presents Himself and His embracing fellowship for participation and opportune loving. God's project continues the same. The detail of his planning accords with the actualities of the relationships in which His love is to be offered. God's circumstantial will is to accomplish new tactics in His new strategy to realize the original scenario. God actively seeks restoration in order to have His rejected love received; God relates and gives love to and works in and through only conditions of unity offered to him as foundations for increase. God's circumstantial will, involving God's suffering with man, is for action as a means of disorganizing the evil conditions of unity, preclusive of development, and reorganizing the parts in good conditions of unity, conducive to God's further magnification. In order to achieve His whole purpose, God willingly suffers for the sake of restoration; where His will for restoration is denied the suffering is increased and prolonged.


Based on the Unification view of the nature of the Creator God, we have seen His internal response to the fact of distortion in creation, (i) The perfect God of fundamental love seeks to end suffering through return of the separated object to union with Him, continuing to suffer (as both loving and just) rather than to avoid suffering by desertion or annihilation. He affirms the created order, (ii) God is unified as solely and unreservedly creative. He is objectified in His creation, always finding some response and joy.37 His initiative and only his initiative can and must result in remediation of the dysfunctional separation and the suffering of God and man. The Creator and source of love is justified as a supernatural, omnipotent, loving God because He responds by devoting all adequate force for immediate remediation. God acts for and through man for restoration, (iii) We have shown that God so viewed can act for salvation. The blessedness of perfect love and lovingness is not impaired by suffering due to rejection of love. The receptivity of God enables His actions of love which must accord with the actualities of relationships, so that, although He continues to suffer due to the power of Satan (His creature), He is not passive. In circumstances where power in the creation is fragmented, God's power cannot fully work; but, we have stated, God has powerfulness sufficient for remediation and He is unhesitantly willing to use power unsparingly for that purpose. He does not will continuing suffering but affirms life inclusive of suffering in order to restore and develop His creation for man to be with Him, to end suffering the soonest. Thus we have shown, against certain challenges, that the suffering God of unchanging and unified motivation, love, purpose, Word and power retains unimpaired blessedness, aseity and might, and is fully receptive and variously active, with perpetual inner freedom, although temporarily externally limited.

God as presented thus far is worthy of hopeful worship, for He is wholly, continuingly, fully loving, suffering with man, unchanged, and with no limitation of powerfulness. This is the immutable, suffering Creator.

II. God's Controlling, Restorational, Initiative Respecting Man's Freedom

[God, wholly loving, sovereign and dynamically capable, inspires our hope; but God has not fully won man back to Him, ending suffering. We here indicate an outward response of God to suffering, a just potent remedial initiative fully respectful of human freedom, yet sovereign. Further definition of good and evil is offered in subsection 8.]

A. Tactics of Restorational Love.

The suffering Creator's remedial yet respective initiative.

1. Locus of restoration. Satan has not changed any laws. There are no natural laws which caused separation from God and human conflict. Separation and conflict did not originate (as have been suggested by some) because sexual reproduction has death as a necessitated antithesis. They did not originate because man's plasticity gives him freedom. Satan freely seduced man and man freely chose to love illusory fantasy and inertia, and exclusion and possessiveness. Man wavers; first individually, then in groups wavering because of wavering individuals. Once an exclusive or possessive group is formed it has inertia distinct from that of its members.

Man lives with inadequate standards for loving and limited freedom. The life of a group may be transformed through exposure to a new standard, but any new elevation of standard must come about through an individual human. The change must begin in the individual human.

Many physically mature humans have gained well-developed physical and emotional power and mature desire, yet abnormally limited standards of loving enable formation only of unions so limited in range and endurance as not to bring deep satisfaction. In growth according to God's norm, the standard of conscience would develop along with emotional and physical development. Fallen man, suffering, needs elevation of standard.

2. Disuniting forces. Satan works through man when man seeks a lower unification than God desires, one relatively narrow in time and space. This occurs upon disinclination to follow high standards or in ignorance of how to use power, resulting at best in the search for simple repetition. Progress is stopped, God suffers, others are affected; disunity is increased, descendents are harmed. When man is disinclined to follow the highest standard known and forms a union, Satan claims the union.

3. Forces of stasis. Man born with original sin is not receiving God's love fully38 He cannot receive God's love fully. Also, it is our corrupted nature, unable to center fully on God, to be attracted to Satan, to center on Satan, our false "father."

Man centered on Satan is attached to that which is relatively external, determining to maintain relationships without willingness to seek or enter greater relationships. His attachment is based on the false word: the word is of limitation, finitude and self-reliance. The word is based upon supposed scarcity. This attachment becomes anchored in a religion of limitation and finitude. Man's responsiveness is limited; this is the internal condition of the limitation.

If man receives God's love he will act to give love, ^et, in the world centered on Satan, others are prone to reject him. In giving love for a wider relationship, the present relationships have been disorganized but there is some hope for their reorganization in a larger structure of relationships. When, receiving God and giving love, man, being rejected, finds no embracing structure of organization, he remains with the disruption from giving (which normally is compensated). Then he experiences pain from without. So each man fears the consequence of loving and the fears of the other justify the fears of the one. Then, if man is acted on by God, receiving, he envisions coming to pain. For this reason, being acted on and experiencing pain are both called, in English, "suffering."

Tauler and Eckhart39 presented this analysis. There is "a self-centered possession of things, among which can be reckoned one's own achievements," even one's relationship with God. These have all been finite. The possession of them is for oneself who is therefore possessed by them. Then if these are lost as is inevitable (according to laws governing the finite), one suffers passively. The problem is that the refusal to experience pain from separation from that affording relatively external value causes unwillingness to be receptive to God.

When man is unready to expand his giving, he cannot receive greater love from God. To receive may be to suffer. Therefore the refusal of God is the refusal to suffer. Due to original sin and to addiction we refuse to experience normal separation for growth and, under the Satanic circumstances, to experience abnormal pain in the cause of uncertain development. The refusal frustrates man's deeper desire and causes him suffering. This refuser is the man who resists suffering; as a result, God directly suffers.

God always calls for separation, offering eventual reintegration in larger unities of greater value. Satan offers his word: a vision of scarcity, opposing faith with limitation; a standard for maintenance, opposing justice with finitude; a predication of doubt, opposing hope with self-reliance. Man fears that activity in response to God's call for unification will result in open-ended suffering. Congenitally attached to the finite and addicted to values and modes of replenishment, fearing God's voice, man refuses God. The result of inactivity is suffering.

4. God's work. Identifying Satan and Satan's objectification in conditions as the cause of suffering, of blocking the development of love, God must seek elimination of the causal conditions.

God may not just eliminate (or reform) Satan at the outset if He wants man to develop in full responsibility; it was man who allowed himself to be drawn to Satan and fell into the alienated condition. God rather seeks, by the elimination of alienating conditions, within man and socially, to free man so that man can grow in love.

How does God act for changing man's condition from that of being blocked and resistant to God's love to that desired by God? Man's deepest desire is always to love. Therefore, God stimulates the desire for increase of loving. This God always does, whether with totally free man or as God's fundamental action in the course of restoration.

As man resists his desire for more far-reaching values, being otherwise attracted, God shows or would persuade man not to continue in the present course of life. In the course of restoration, this is a call for repentance.

God presents standards. These are of the truth needed for wider expression and actualization of love, for action in accordance with desire. This God also will always do for free man or as a man becomes free.

God also will set up a situation in which man can have give and take action, establish a structure of unity, actualize love, and establish union. The situation encourages action in accordance with desire. God would always do this, but in the fallen world to establish the structure requires a chain of repentance.

To attract man to free himself from Satan's orbit so as to express love more widely, God stimulates desire for joy, calls man to turn from the way of failure, presents the higher standard and the opportunity for more fruitful interactions and union.

5. Deprivation through laws. God's laws operate to show man that his limited way will not succeed in the maintenance of valued union but will lead to added suffering. God then stimulates thoughts of repentance.

Behind the disasters caused to man in accordance with God's laws, God has no sense of hostility or "revenge." Rather, these laws work for man's reclamation. God's prophets warn of suffering as "punishment" but only if there is no change of behavior. So God is responsive to human response.40

God works through laws to warn of impending suffering. He seeks man's repentance to end suffering.

6. Law, suffering and repentance. God, through his laws, endorses suffering from loss of inflexible or partial relationships and of illusions of full satisfaction. This, God's legal punishment, is a demonstration. In the affliction is the demonstration that man cannot defy nor long misappropriate the laws of God. Man must see his weakness and his bondage to God's natural law and spiritual law; so man's hubris is to end.

God does not become greater through man's humiliation, but God's greatness can be perceived, that God's Word is greater than man's word. Man perceives that God is greater than himself.

When, through the laws of God, man is deprived of the values he earnestly sought to fix, he becomes open to the experience of dissatisfaction and desire and he may know of his desire for greater value. The frustration of the deeper desire is causing man (and God) the greater suffering.

While God's laws operate autonomously and inexorably, God can only proffer to man the call for repentance. Man may reject the call. He may choose merely to redouble his efforts to regain and gain relatively trivial unification. Laws in themselves only through attraction serve the unification of complementary commonly purposed elements and, through lack of attraction, cause separation in any other case. Only God's initiative of love can lead to the change of internal condition in man preparative to external action for greater change.

This is the purpose of God's legal action against man, that if man accepts suffering from external loss he may find liberation of the desire for greater unity, he may repent of his limiting ways. Also, he may become aware that he is suffering due to his ignorance, his not knowing to change, to overcome frustrating conditions; thus he may discover his need for God's new Word and for power to change conditions.

7. Deprivation by volition. Although God wills unification and happiness, not disunification and suffering, in the circumstances of the fallen world His circumstantial will must be for separation from undue attachment to old values and thus for suffering. This is suffering from lack of fulfillment of false desires (desires whose fulfillment will obstruct fulfillment of desires for more inclusive value). God wills man's detachment from certain relatively external relationships and the detachment causes suffering since it has been through these relationships or in dependence on them that man's love has been expressed.

For a period of time, man must be stripped of these relationships. If he strips himself in seeking freedom, the period is a sacrificial period. The dissolution and suffering will happen sooner or later, one way or another, voluntarily or through inexorable laws (for the relationships are untenable without being part of a larger structure which is being disdained). If man holds to overly external values beyond a certain time opportune for repentance and sacrifice (often specified by God's Word according to His circumstantial will), the suffering to be experienced will be greater. So God only speeds inevitable suffering, seeks to minimize suffering, and urges its use.

God urges and requires the suffering of detachment as a means of education: as a reminder of deeper desire and the deeper suffering which man is, in fact experiencing, and as a reinforcer of knowledge that only through greater unity can present values be maintained indefinitely God's urging of sacrificial suffering would be of no great effect and His laws valueless if He did not persist in the more fundamental activity of stimulating man's deep desire for greater value. The overall hope in detachment is the liberation of man for action towards the ending of deeper suffering. In cases where God's physical and spiritual laws have already forced detachment and newly exposed deep desire, God urges voluntary sacrificial suffering then, as a bulwark against temptation to re-attach. Sacrifice, bringing immediate suffering, is to compensate for earlier attachment. God has given man his marvelous brain and nervous system and the ability to use symbols and perform rituals. Thus man often can establish new conditions of relating41 by merely symbolic sacrifice, and the suffering will be much less. In any case, after a sufficient period of successful sacrifice, man is to relate again to objects such as that sacrificed, but without the attachment.

The period of sacrificial frustration is also a period of training; a benefit of suffering resulting from detachment from pursuit of lesser values is the practice of endurance of such suffering and of the particular organization required during it, so that flexibility is gained enabling greater offering of love. Thus the detachment is actually for reparation of relationship with God, to restore the ability to function with God.

Man may resist God's circumstantial will for sacrificial suffering, thinking peace and happiness to be jeopardized. But this is based on unawareness of deeper desire and sufferings.

Apathy is an illusion: some suicides seem to feel nothing (a case of total consciousness of apathy is beautifully portrayed in Moore),42 but inside there is a scream; in the catatonic, the rage is turned inward, but inwardly there is the raging from the frustration of God-given desire -- one cannot extinguish it.

Solle43 wrote: "The God who is the lover of life does not desire suffering of people, not even as a pedagogical device, but instead their happiness." Yet, God must urge the hastening of inevitable suffering so that desire may be liberated for greater happiness and eventual fulfillment through realization of greater values from conditions of unity in circumstances also inclusive of conditions affording all true lesser values. Love is an "ardent attachment," writes Mastrantonis.44 Disunity from detachment is real and the suffering from the disunity is real; there is real deprivation and loss of vitality until the love is re-directed for greater value and finds response. Humans of vitality mediate God's and in man's suffering God suffers. Thus, as noted, God's circumstantial will is for suffering to end suffering.

8. Love and suffering. God's way in His circumstantial will is the way of unconditional love for the object with whatever foundation He finds, and He will endure suffering, as man suffers, for the sake of later values.

God's foundation in human society is human desire, awareness of it, determination and vitality, and relationships and conditions of unity objectifying the desire and vitality without preventing objectification of greater desire. In its own level of scope and durability, any condition of unity is inherently good with a suppositive potential for serving as foundation. God's prime force of attraction works to sustain any condition of unity. At the same time, His will is to unite all conditions of unity, ending disunity. In His plan for the greater foundation and His desire for the greater union He works normally for re-organization of lesser conditions of unity, and, in the case of resistance His circumstantial will is for abnormal or wasteful division of the lesser condition of unity, although His force is working also for its unity. Obstructive of a greater condition of unity, a lesser condition of unity, inherently a good condition, may be considered an evil condition.45

God's center of attention is upon the conditions of unity which can be foundations for the unity of the whole, and specifically it is upon the foundation with the greatest potential for serving as the unifying center. Even these foundations are often established through compromise and partial rejection of God's intentional will for greater union. Yet God must value these central foundations especially, regardless of their history, and he must dedicate them for the future of the whole.

Although there is insufficient foundation for the reception of all of God's love, He seeks to establish conditions for greater fulfillment. So God is wholly open to suffering: in relating to insufficient foundations He is open to suffering; in urging separation from abnormal attachment He is open to suffering; in urging human love which will be rejected He is open to suffering. God abandons himself to suffering. He never holds back love nor seeks retaining of value because of the threat of suffering. He never degrades love: he never retreats, coerces nor possesses.

This unconditional love is God's parental love of which human parental love is the most "visible" paradigm. It is unconditional love for specific humans and for all reality including God's own desire, laws, purpose; love regardless of immediate fulfillment but expressed as offer enabling immediate change. God's capacity for suffering enables him to use suffering. According to Solle,46 "true acceptance of suffering" is acceptance in relation to a promised better future, of "a restoration of elemental goodness" and the abolition of anguish (and of any evil power involved). Without present fulfillment God loves.

Parental love is love for the object as it is; love not dependent on conditions to be satisfied before the lover yields to the beloved. Parental love for the unresponsive requires accepting of continuing or possibly increased suffering. God affirms present reality. He thus also affirms His desire to end real suffering. This is also God's love for Himself, His own future, as it were, for all possible reality states. Hence, unconditional love does not negate the desire to change reality: specified conditions are not the basis of love, but conditions for fulfillment are sought by love. Love exists first, and it is truly expressed to conditions which are foundational for fulfillment.

God with unconditional love for each creation relates to responding desire or any other unity foundational towards His Kingdom. His normal work is for re-organization with reintegration in greater combinations. Where His intentional will was resisted, His laws bring abnormal division or wasteful destruction of some units obstructive of greater unification. Then, He must rely on human response to his circumstantial will that humans, through greater attraction to His hopeful Word, might establish new conditions for relationship, putting behind temptation so as to override bonding forces which themselves manifest God's primary force of attraction.47 In God's love for the whole, He never withholds any love nor would retain any value because of suffering to come. God is wholly open to suffering: where there are foundations insufficient to receive the fullness of His love, when he urges separation from abnormal attachment, when He urges emulating human loving. This is parental love, love regardless of condition, love precedent to response and unchanging even if rejection brings suffering. This is God's transcendent parental love. His transcendent self-love is manifest in His affirmation of present reality and His determination for restoration and development.

9. God rejected. God's love is expressed as an offer: it may be rejected; then there is no manifest result but suffering. God with love spurned is as dead. However, this is not the end of God. (There is no power outside of God that can grasp Hi m or that can drain His force.) Although the rejection of God's offer and resulting suffering of God and man may appear to signal the death of God's activity, God perpetually lives and acts because He has objectified Himself, His glory is in creation, and He is relating to His creation. So, surrounded by darkness, there is the reappearance of His activity.

10. God continuant. When God stimulates and man resists, God without alternative continues offering. God has positive intentions and He speaks. (Man would wish God to stop stimulating his desire with an offer causing suffering, for he does not wholly believe in resurrection, but the Creator does not stop, that man might be free.) Hence, in the circumstances, God, man and the whole creation are suffering.

"Man's separation from God brought spiritual death to man and has caused all the sorrow, misery, tragedy and evil within himself and in the world." "Looking at fallen man, God sees His wounded and broken creature, still bearing the divine spark, the seed of protection, but unable to respond to Him freely." "His manifestation is limited by the degree of human response and capacity... Throughout thousands of years of history, God's love has never been requited..." "Ever since man's fall God has been seeking His lost family." "On the other hand, mankind has been suffering from hunger and thirst in spirit, separated from the love of God."48

With God's unkillable desire fulfilled only through free response (and with man's desire for give-and-take) God alone cannot end suffering. Human love for God can, but from and with God only. Man alone cannot end suffering. The end of suffering will not stem from the external causes of social progress, neither just from individual or capitalistic concern nor just from societal or socialistic concerns. God, speaking to man, continues with determination for the higher standard of love requisite for his goal. Practice of such a standard may entail suffering for man and God but God has neither fear (for He has "drunk" fully of His suffering) nor possessiveness of the present, to waste His energies, nor is His mind thrown into the confusion of some blind anger or blind aggressiveness or hatred. The Creator is not bitter but continues suffering in seeking betterment according to His original Logos. God's response to His suffering is never one to communicate with Satan (slowing the cause of unification) but always in furtherance of God's full ideal according to His original scenario. God's Word is unalterable.

God, suffering, acts for realization of His full ideal; according to His original and unalterable Logos, true development is possible only through human practice of increasing standards of love. The Creator continues speaking a higher standard. He desires and requires man's freedom and free response. Both God's love and man's exercise of God's love are required for the termination of suffering. God has fully endured rejection and the apparent death of His activity, and hesitates not. Man doubting resurrection, would protest God's offering causing suffering.

B. Approach of Redemptive Love

The parental Redeemer's love, controlling yet respectful.

1. God's offer. God cannot abolish suffering by a fiat of God, and He thus "allows" it; but this does not mean that He finds it good (He did not create it). God never "learns to tolerate it" but uses the fullness of His force, with knowledge, to end it. Buber said: the real exile in Egypt "was that they had learned to endure it."49 God is not dead nor absent: man hides.

God's only way is to give love, abandoning the immediate outcome to man, committed to the total outcome. There are no alternatives. If it is true that God is sure of final victory, this is no act of blind faith on His part but derives from His sight, His vision. God does not shrink from action in the face of suffering. To "avoid" suffering is to avoid relationship. But God has passion for life, seeking intense joy, and He created for relationship. Therefore, it may be asserted that God empties Himself in loving creations. The fate of God is dependent upon human response.

God acts totally for that moment in historical time and that location in created space and for the being He is loving, to maintain contact and to stimulate healing of its past and change for its immediate future; yet inertia may oppose him. So God often appears as a slave to inertia and entropy, doing again what He had before. It is simultaneously because God is sure of final victory that He as God can commit Himself fully to action of variable direct outcome, and because as actor He does so commit Himself that the final victory is sure.

But of these, the latter is, after all, logically prior. When all has been said about the "mental" aspect of the suffering Creator, about Word, strategy and tactics, about perspective, it is the living heart of the Creator moving outwards towards what created life exists that is primary and original data (the remainder is more or less explanatory).

Ferre wrote50 that God who lives forever blessed in Himself suffers "temporarily" for the sake of fuller sharing of his fellowship of love; the suffering does not continue forever but is terminated by victory, resurrection.

God, passionate for relationship and life and joy, suffering and hating suffering, committed to the ultimate outcome of whole unity, can offer only love, the direct outcome abandoned to man, His fate placed in human hands. The Creator's commitment to full and minutely specified action for His beloved creature enables His sureness of final victory and his sureness enables His committed action.

2. Offering, loss and resurrection. God is open to any possible loss. This is the relationship of omnipotence to fundamental love: Because fundamental desire is fulfilled only through love God accepts limitation on the effect of specific force. God, having replenishable force, would save nothing of His might if He let a moment in historical time pass without offering all in love. He would lose exactly that moment of opportunity during which disunity would tend to increase in creation, diminishing God's foundation and the opportunity for effectiveness of force. Even if it were possible that His loving effort were totally rejected the outcome could be no worse than if He failed to give in full abandonment. God is, in fact, sure of some change, if only in the deepest recess of a human. He has no doubts; the action is valid.

Even with great loss, God gains. For instance, in Jesus God had on earth a human of response to the great love of God. Well might God have desired other humans to adopt this standard of love. This desire was prevented; those who had the opportunity to objectify Jesus all deserted him, could not embody the standard. Jesus was crucified. The result was loss for God of His great joy through Jesus' actions as an individual man on earth. Yet, consequent on that loss and God's continuing love, a little of Jesus' new standard was sown in some, the beginning of a standard of unification above those previously held, and many came to this in time. Thus God did widen His foundation. Upon the loss of Jesus' physical life and leadership came the loss of the milieu of Judah (Judea) where one could live in the highest ethical standard known, and this caused further and great suffering for God. "Yet, after some persons adopted the new and higher standard and exchanged their love with the potential of embracing all, God was suffering less than He had before He sent Jesus to His people. God exalted Jesus to be with Him as immediate foundation and Jesus is spiritually in the fellowship of the disciples on earth, even though there is yet no home for God and His children. However, there was less fruit than if Jesus' willingness to suffer, his sacrifice of relationships, had been accepted and he remained on earth to objectify God and deliver his nation for the world.

The Unification view here is in accord with Weatherhead's question and responses. "Was it God's intention from the beginning that Jesus should go to the Cross? I think the answer to that question must be No. I don't think Jesus thought that at the beginning of his ministry. He came with the intention that men should follow him, not kill him." "God's will in the circumstances which men's evil provided, was that Jesus should accept death, but accept it in such a positive and creative way as to lead to... the redemption of man, winning back to God, not in spite of the Cross, but using the Cross, born of man's sin..." "It was not the intentional will of God, surely, that Jesus should be crucified, but that he should be followed. If the nation had understood and received his message, repented of its sins, and realized his kingdom, the history of the world would have been very different. Those who say that the Crucifixion was the will of God should remember that it was the will of evil men... "51

Weatherhead also affirms52 that people "might have known," in Jesus' lifetime, the things belonging to peace, and might have followed him then.

God always knew the principle of resurrection, so He can always go the sacrificial-way-of-the-cross, sure of laying a foundation. So God's circumstantial will entailing suffering is not masochism. God's love is for the reality for which he has unconditional love. God's love is given in the world for effect beyond any individual, pair-relationship, group-relationship (or any sub-unity of reality), and thus is "supernatural." Since God, even if blocked, never has cessation of creativity, effort and love, He never loses ultimate control of the over-all situation.

Lewis53 wrote that foreknowledge is not a necessary attribute of God, since "there is in God the power to be equal to any occasion, in so far as His purpose calls for the occasion to be met;" God's ultimate control then lies in this power. But this view is insufficiently assuring. In the Unification view, God has control because He foreknows the steps of the scenario (the sequence of the magnification of love and the establishment of foundational unions), because He is to act continually towards realization of the steps, and because His power is receivable. Then it is not necessary for God to foreknow the particular events which will, in fact, realize the scenario, whether or not, as Barth holds,54 all possibilities are known by God. Quick55 said that God became "externally" passible through creating, but that "God is never acted on by anything which... he does not himself always control by his over-ruling power." But, in our view, what is important to God's control is that He is involved and responsive to man and hence can act with the offer appropriate to the actual events. Thus we find uncompelling the argument of Noro56 that since "the certainty of our salvation" depends upon God's "unfailing power to achieve His ultimate purpose" we cannot be "sure about our final salvation when God is influenced by the contingencies of the time-process."

God has the control and God chooses to share the control with man, establishing man, as it were, as co-pilot. The Unification view, especially as set forth in Divine Principle, Chapter One, accords fully with Barth's view that God is the absolutely superior partner of man.57

If God's control lies in exercise of omnipotence not expressed through love, with just love's insistence on freedom, then man only submits. In this case, man would not be strengthened. There would be no partnership, oneness in heart with God. Ma n then is a servant but not a child of God who shares heart, Word and power. God then merely delegates some powers. In this is no justice.

So it is directly for the sake of man that God continues and chooses love with attendant suffering, and indirectly for His own sake, the sake of his heart's joy. In this loving He maintains contact with man, pursuing him to the end. It is only in the sense of God's calling that will ultimately (either directly or mediately) attract each human that we can speak of God's over-ruling power as regards free beings. It is precisely for the sake of man's freedom that God shares his suffering. With this freedom man is called to remedy God's loss and end God's suffering.

Randlers58 made the point that if God suffers because we do, then we must suffer deeply on account of Him, the greatest sufferer. He notes that this must spoil our otherwise purely blissful worship. In our view, these remarks are very true. However, Randlers means to object to a suffering God. He suggests that if God therefore has to suffer perhaps we should choose not to be saved. In our view, that would be to reject God's grace from which He will anyway have His reward. We do not approve that an ill child should kill himself to remove the burden on a long-suffering parent. Randlers further notes that the concept of the suffering God stops us from exulting at His all-sufficiency and transcendence of evil. We can view this as meaningful and suggest that the time for exultation should be carefully chosen. We should be aware of, grateful for and praising of God's obligation. Our understanding of this obligation accords with Anselm's classic form. Since God freely obligated Himself in the act of creating, the obligation does not attenuate God's freedom.

Noro persists with the point (p. 92ff.) that if God needs creation, then His grace is not "free"; our being created must be free, not a necessity for God. In our view, God, as parental, desires children and desires that they be free. Thus His creating is His original grace, which was granted tor fulfillment of all desire and which would have continued to flow freely had creation maintained its full freedom for fulfilling the created desires by fully mediating God's gracious love. Once the creation left God, then it became needed, its return needed as a preparation for the fulfillment of all desire, God's and creation's. Thus God's grace, flowing from His freedom, has had the characteristic of "long-suffering grace," saving grace. God's chosen obligation may be further understood: if He gives freedom and responsibility He can no more keep it. As God did not err in the giving, the freedom and responsibility are permanently to be shared. God's wish is that man speedily assume our designated portion of responsibility and attain our full freedom for love. God's self-limitation preceded the fall of man and existence of Satan. In Christ, Christians have met, to our shock, not the desired, expected unlimiting God (to do all things to us) but exactly the self-limiting God which is love.

Anselm further said that God is victorious because He can pay the price. Those who would view God as solely transcendent of evil are often those also looking solely past the existence of physical life and expecting no return of Christ to earth for the establishing of full freedom and love (referred to in Divine Principle as the Second Advent of the Lord).

To say that God's way of suffering has been part of His way of love is one thing. But, as Hedinger pointed out,59 saying with the mystics that God suffers is not saying enough; suffering must be fought and we need to show that (and how) God will end suffering, else God is not truly omnipotent. It would be nobler to love God even if we did not know of His final victory (worshipping a God not necessarily omnipotent), than to settle for a retreat from desire (worshipping a God of faltering heart); but we are in sympathy with Noro60 that "faith longs for the victor over the evils of human life, the victor through and through. Only on Hi m can we rely absolutely." It is important, however, that the search for victory be a search for victory through love only, since suffering is the blockage of love. Thus, in any case we may not find God among the non-loving. Solle's emphasis is appropriate, on the supernatural love ready to suffer to produce change.61

This supernatural love must be found in history, among and within "natural loves" as well as beyond.

With radical love and inexhaustible force God accepts limitation of the effectiveness of specific force. According to the principle of resurrection God's internal foundation in creation always continues and God always brings about some development of His foundation in the cosmos. To hasten the end of suffering God is open to any loss of external foundation, and consequent increase of suffering, where the internal foundation is developed: where God's Word is implanted its substantiation is sure to follow. Thus God can always go the sacrificial-way-of-the cross. God seeks to restore the whole of creation as foundation for its infinite development; His love is supernatural. Thus the ever-loving Creator God capable of sacrificial action has ultimate control of reality, having incessant Creativity, effort and love, and foreknowing the levels of foundational unification to be successively realized and being eternally present in His creation.

God exercises His control through His involvement with and responsiveness to His creation: He expresses His omnipotence through love, making offer always appropriate to conditioned reality, choosing to share His control with man for the sake of justice and joy. In seeking man's exercise of responsibility, God chooses love and to share man's suffering. God's creation is His original grace flowing from His free desire for children of freedom, granted for fulfillment of all. Due to Satan's work, God needs His creation's restoration as a foundation for that fulfillment and His freely chosen grace is salvific and preliminarily for fulfillment.

God's immutability is grounded in His principles.62 God's determination, self-limiting, to be eternally Creator, Father, love, logically preceded creation. For man to be convinced of God's omnipotence in creation and gain confidence to fight suffering he must comprehend how God will bring final victory. For this he must, first of all, find supernatural love in history, among and within "natural love."

3. God and man. Because of concentration on heart of desire for increase (He has by no means cut desire) God pours forth His love for investment, for a human's detachment from misgained values so that he might have more unity within himself in readiness to be more greatly foundational in God's work of the development of the scope of substantiated love. When the opportunity is created God will then elect him for greater loving. For the establishment of foundations towards His whole goal, for future joy, God's love often has been invested in humans who have been receiving little of external value and despairing of that. God got great glory on earth in Adam and Eve, but the fullness of that glory cannot now shine.

God's glory is lowered into exile in the world. This is the Kabbalistic tradition reported by Buber. Solle (pp. 245-6) summarizes Buber's reporting. God in His exiled glory shares the suffering of creation. God did not forsake the suffering world needing redemption, but God's glory descended into the world into exile, dwelling with the unclean. In this God shares the suffering of people in exile, prison, martyrdom, taking on pain. Only man can redeem God's pain.

God, not masochistic, not seeking suffering, demands much, not little, from man.

"By the fall of man, God lost his beloved children who were created in his image as his substantial bodies. When God saw that man fell, He could not bear it. His heart was broken and he felt the greatest sorrow. God created man to be such a loving being, and God poured out everything he had, His heart, love and energy to make men His children, the masterpieces of all His creation. Man was created as such a valuable being that without man, God's ideal could not be realized. However God lost his children by the fall.

Also, God lost all the creation, because the lords of creation, men, were taken by Satan. God's purpose and ideal of creating man and the universe was to receive joy and happiness by having perfect give and take action with them. God lost everything, and because of this, God came to have no object which fully reflects His own Sung-Sang and Hyung-Sang to perform give and take action with. Thus, God could not realize His purpose of creating man and the universe.

Instead God saw the most hateful relationships develop between fallen people and Satan. The men who were created to be God's children became Satan's children. The men who were created to be the lords of all creation became the servants of servants. However, fallen men do not know of their miserable state, and are content with it. Fallen men deny the existence of God, and do all kinds of evil against God, realizing the world of tragedy. So, God lost not only His children, but God's children came to stand against Him as His enemies. God repented that He created man, and said that it grieved Him to His heart (Gen. 6:6).

God stands in a paradoxical position; He cannot hate fallen men because they were created as His children originally by Him, and He cannot fully love them, because they became children of Satan. He cannot destroy them, but must work to save them from the fallen state to the original state of creation.

When God sends His representatives and even His beloved Son, fallen man just opposes them, stoning and killing them. Therefore, the purpose of God's creation was never accomplished, but on the contrary, the opposite results came about, increasing God's sorrow. Isaiah 1:3: 'The ox knows its owner, and the ass its master's crib; but Israel does not know, my people does not understand.'

God's expectation for man was so great when He started His work of creation that the disappointment and sorrow and anguish which God felt when man fell were very great. We cannot find any man or being more grievous than God. Whenever God sees His fallen children and creation, it reminds Him of the fall of man and makes God sorrowful. God desperately wants to have His children restored and wants to love them. For this He is doing salvation providence.

Therefore, we must ease his suffering and comfort Him, and return joy to God by restoring our original position as His children."63

4. Faithful sacrifice. This is the realism of God, that He cannot rely on that which is peripheral. God's only resource for saving man and receiving joy is love from the heart. God brings about the future kingdom through suffering believers. Believers in God (according to whatever form they may cognize Him) sacrifice, willing to suffer; but all human sacrifice is, in fact, a response to God's suffering, it is motivated by love and God is the source of love, God's restorative love the source of man's. The blockage of love seeking relationship causes suffering. Suffering, which inspires sacrifice, remains until the whole in which a human may relate is interresponsive to love, therefore each desires to perceive this unified whole environment and suffers until it is established; so the sufferings of all humans are, at base, common and the source is God's suffering.

God relies on love from heart invested for the liberation of man. The future kingdom will be brought by God through sacrifice. Sacrifice is motivated by love; it is inspired by God's original suffering and man's suffering when love seeking relationship has been blocked: believers in God are willing to sacrifice for God's relief. God and man suffer until the whole environment is interresponsive to love. Therefore, God invests his heart's love to end the suffering of man and God.64

5. God's example. God needs humans with Him. He needs humans to serve through attracting others. God's love despite suffering and abandoned to freedom of response, should be exemplary for man.

But how is God's example to be perceived by humans? Either through abstracting from our own experience the experience of God the causer or through direct revelation, any of us might find out God's example. Yet, since the forces of inertia and temptation are so strong, God did not develop a community in substantiation of His example through His direct communication of His example to a multiplicity of individuals. Rather, God has to rely on pioneer humans establishing examples in the mode of God, that other humans might see in them God's exemplary loving and suffering.

Since neither is there the end to God's suffering by initiatives from without Him nor can He, by Himself, end the suffering. He must expose His pain and seek a solidarity of suffering. God's suffering can be inspirational and can lead to liberation of power in man and hence of God's power. God's aim is to have an object ready to serve in the cause of ending suffering. He seeks a human ready to accept suffering in the cause, so that even where his loving is presently externally futile, resulting in the suffering of defeat (or loss), he will have become stronger, closer to God. Then the result of that human's loving will be more developed power for God. God is willing to suffer to get such a deserving human.65

To reconstruct His creation, God needs pioneer humans to set example mediating God's exemplary loving and suffering. God reveals Himself as wider love and seeks humans to recognize Him and attract others to join in substantiating this standard. God's direct aim is to have with Him a pioneer open to further suffering from loss or defeat in the process towards the ending of suffering. God is willing suffer to find that human and He vocalizes His pain to inspire humans and for their liberation of power and for solidarity with God.

6. Satan's victory. God sends the pioneer human, who is responsive and with Him, often to his further suffering. God does not enjoy the full value presently possible. Satan may taunt when God makes this sacrifice, but there is no alternative for God.

God experiences the pain from unconditional love in contradictory circumstances, from sacrificing true value for the sake of unity with the undeserving. Since those rebellious are needed for the establishment of God's perfect kingdom and desired by God for their sakes and for the sake of His joy, God would have more pain if holding back his ready pioneer than in sending him even to considerable loss: God must seek to extend the scope of action. Koyama writes that God seems inefficient in acting only with love, traveling with the exiled, etc.; he speaks of a "supreme sacrifice of God" which was implemented by an inefficient process.66

The pioneer sent to suffering might be a "saved Christian." Christians have professed imperturbation over their own suffering on earth, but Ferre argues67 that if God suffers this disturbs the bliss of saved men in Heaven. It is indeed clear that in the Unification view so long as God suffers saved persons must also continue to suffer. Suffering is frustration of heart's desire. Then is there any reason to suppose that physical death (cessation of life of the physical body) would bring an end to suffering since the spirit still lives? No matter how "moral" life has been or how faithfully a physical death is accepted, heart's desire unfulfilled remains. According to Luke 23:43, Jesus said that he and a thief would be in paradise, the day of their physical deaths. It is hoped and believed that many other humans are also "in paradise." Have those saints no longer responsibility? Are they inactive? If they are living this cannot be so. We say that the thief died without fulfillment of his heart's desire. Then there must be at some time and place in some way an opportunity for him to be active and loving; else, his Creator's desire for him is also frustrated eternally. The view that physical life, with its goals, is but a trial which it weathered leads to an a-natural bliss, we reject as a gnostic narcotic (which, we suspect, found a home in Christianity when analogy was made between individual physical life on earth and the beloved nation of Israel which was killed, its efforts seemingly wasted and then atrociously misunderstood as a trial for humanity or a moral lesson in failure and of no intrinsic value, humanity in Christ now seen as having passed on to the tranquil spiritual life apart from the frustrations of the national seeking of social change or economic welfare).

For the Unification understanding of the activity of the saints after physical death, the reader is referred to Part I, Chapter 5 of Divine Principle. Here, we may attend specifically to the question of Jesus' activity since his crucifixion. Whether considered to be "in paradise" or "at the right hand of God" (Acts 7:55), Jesus is, according to nearly all Christian tradition, the "head of the Church" which is his "body." This body is known to be ill, malfunctioning, suffering. Then Jesus, as head, cannot be living without suffering the frustration from rejected or distorted directives.68 It may be said that Jesus, at least, reached a fulfillment. Unification theology agrees with Christian tradition that Jesus is irrevocably one with God the Father, and this unity is indeed a desire of heart. Yet this unity is not the whole fulfillment of a human according to any biblical or biological scenario. The resurrection of Jesus after the crucifixion was not just a "resurrection of God" (i.e., a renewal or elevation of God's activity), but a resurrection of the human Jesus. It is for this reason that the Church has emphasized that Jesus, after the crucifixion, still or again has his human body. The nature of this body is in dispute but the significance is that Jesus can still act, can communicate with others, can respond.69 We must think that others departing "this life" also continue to love those of earth, thus living and seeking fulfillment of the human spirit through human activity.70

There is further response required by Ferre's argument. Since God is internally unchanged by the experience of suffering, then when the kingdom of heaven is established on earth, then neither God nor the saints on earth will suffer and all who have been living, whether on the earth still or only in the spiritual realm, will find opportunity for fulfilling activity. The bliss is yet to come, and the "communion of saints" awaits it also. Save for the perfect, Christ, all humans have continued doing Satan's will in part, because of false valuation and conflicting desire; and even Jesus has not realized his full inheritance of the unified world. Our desire for Heaven, the home, is not fulfilled. Christians are at best adopted children or spiritual sons and daughters of God (Romans 8:14-24).

In affirming that the opportunity to become true children of God is at hand and that heaven will become a reality, we accord with Mascall that "if suffering were strictly or formally contained within God" then if we unite with Him we suffer eternally.71 In contradistinction to Kitamori's view of God's suffering, we find that suffering is not "native" to God. With Christian tradition we believe that Jesus' victory "overcame death" and the power of the devil; yet, Satan still has power, through our sins, and taunts God.

Christian theologians have responded to what appears to be accusation against God. It has long been recognized among Christian writers that suffering resulting from sacrificing relationships and suffering from the rejection of a pioneer's offerings for the establishment of relationships of more encompassing love are sufferings consequent upon initiatives according the will of God. Augustine then suggested that all suffering has been willed and foreknown by God and that believing this then obviates our thinking that God is disturbed as a consequence of any earthly event.72 Also, Calvin suggested that since the actions resulting in suffering are planned by God for our benefit, we should not think that God suffers in this suffering.73

In the view being presented, however, suffering does not lie in disturbance nor surprise (although disturbance can lead to suffering). Suffering results from prevention of creation. Even if God be undisturbed by the first suffering as by later sufferings, He would not have willed the original frustration of His loving. Also, even if God were to foresee the suffering of one purifying himself or pioneering in hardship and to know that the suffering, although resulting from external loss, benefitted the individual and, in fact, served God's providence of restoring the whole creation back to union with Himself, yet the immediate suffering of God is, as we have shown, real in His loss during the period of devitalization of the purifier (which was necessary owing to prior sin), or in the pioneer's loss (which occurred owing to prior sin).

God must send the responsive pioneer, often to further suffering, sacrificing the full value presently possible. Satan, having exercised his power through man's sin, taunts. Suffering, caused through sin, may be consequent upon actions in accordance with God's will to hasten the end of suffering through reclaiming all the rebellious, but it is nonetheless suffering. Although imperturbable during any loss, God Himself suffers nonetheless. Even righteous persons presently suffer before and after the cessation of the life of their physical body.74 According to Divine Principle their Creator's desire for them and their heart's desire would remain unfulfilled did God not bring about in some manner further opportunity for active and successful responsibility, for fulfillment of potential for giving love to reception and for receiving joy. The human Jesus, resurrected and active and responsive in love for all on earth, is a model for other saints also seeking total human fulfillment. Even Jesus, directly one with God the Father, has not received his full inheritance.75 Heaven on earth will be realized, providing unlimited opportunity for fulfilling activity: then all will stand finally as true children of God joyfully exercising their full capacity of love. Suffering is neither strictly nor formally contained in God and He would never originate suffering, therefore when the Kingdom is established all can be eternally and actively blessed.

Review and prospectus. In Section II we saw the tactics of love and God's approach of love to fallen man, His tactical initiative to bring about restoration, and showed the basis of the effectiveness of unchanging loving, (i) The suffering Creator seeking restoration through call and offer is wholly present to partly blinded man, appearing according to man's condition and situation, and thus is in position for effectiveness. In His restoring and creating, He is dependent on free human response which alone can fulfill His purpose of creation: for love God has given a share of control to man, so that the effectiveness of His tactics is not necessarily proportionate to His might. Intrinsically unlimited, God appears in the form of limitation, (ii) Whether or not God foreknows all possible responses, He retains ultimate control because of His steadfastness, His respectfulness of and perpetual affirmation of created natures, His undisturbed freedom and creativity, His receivable power and His foreknowledge of the states of the scenario to be fulfilled, and precisely because the unchanging God exercises His control through His presence, responsiveness and immanent loving activity. iii) The Creator's sole motivation is for the joy of God with and through joy and harmony in all creation. Since the sole purpose of the suffering Creator is restoration, God always wholly gives Himself and all that is in union with Him. He is open to any diminishment of His substantial foundation in the creation, and consequent suffering and his action always results, at least, in development of His spiritual foundation in the creation, (iv) God wholly giving appears dead when rejected, and at all times to be victimized and grieving, yet He is worthy of worship as vibrant and calm and promising perpetual life with eternal bliss. God is justified in calling for suffering: He only hastens inevitable suffering, limits suffering and will end it the soonest. Sharing suffering, he exercises full responsibility. Although righteous persons can, with God, have inner peace, their potential for loving is now unfulfilled and, with God, they suffer; however, since suffering is not native to God, nor essential to creation, it can be ended for all. Physical life ends, even in martyrdom, but even as God never dies so is there no extinction of the spiritual man; rather is there resurrection. As the creation becomes whole, the righteous, whether living on earth or only in the spiritual realm, will find fulfillment through creative, loving activity, (v) God's just tactics include the unchangingness of His laws. In His gracious approach He steadily attracts man from Satan's domain, stimulating hope in the highest standard of love yet revealed and calling for repentance from limited ways to hope. God calls for sacrifice inspired by His suffering and motivated by love. Man's responsibility is to reunite with God according to his Word, willing to suffer in mediating God's example inspirationally to others. When humans unite around the standard revealed, God will reveal the higher standard which alone makes possible greater true unification and the further relief of suffering.

Thus based upon God's motivation. His immutabilities and His responsible and responsive relationship with the creation, we have shown the basis of the nature of the effectiveness of God's tactics of restoration.

Having seen God's approach, we should explicate the quality and content of the interaction of God and fallen man, of God's actions and of human response and of God's appreciation of the response, also considering God's freedom and limitation in history. Through the consideration of God's relationship with His creation we should further validate and justify the tactics of restorative love as effective towards and giving basis of hope for not only immediate and partial remediation but for whole fulfillment.

III. How God Can Depend On Man For Cooperation Towards The Relief Of Suffering

[We here suggest that God can depend on human response and cooperation toward the ending of sinfulness through redemptive suffering with God, considering the intimate communication to man of the transcendent God, the nature of man as God's creature and the perspective of the Creator regarding history.]

A. Suffering and Hope: the immanent inspiration of the transcendent Redeemer.

The discussion moves towards the functional unity of God and man in the effective transmission of mercy, forgiveness and grace.

1. Suffering Creator transcendent of history. God knows the principle of resurrection; there is no death that has any hold on God, He is free to invest all foundations, (even though separation may temporarily increase), in order to gain future value. When a foundation is laid, the transcendent Creator always has power to build upon it.

The Creator God has freedom to invest and power to build upon any foundation.

2. The unity, in history, of transcendence and immanence of the suffering Creator. One of the aspects of human suffering is that we suffer from reluctance and we experience indecision regarding whether to give or not to give love in the face of possible rejection. (Actually, the suffering in this case is due to the resistance of a function of man external to desire, with the result of separation within man.) Augustine considered that suffering is confusion of mind,76 Confusion and indecision result in suffering because during indecision desire cannot be fully expressed. Once the decision to give is made, there is not that internally caused inner suffering; on the other hand, God, enduring all loss and separation and affirming the principle of loving according to circumstances, does not suffer after this manner of humans.

God has always had some joy and with unconditional love He has related to His creatures as they have responded. But God has never related to created beings for His sake exclusively, rather, always for the sake of the other (and through that end to His consequent joy). Hence, He can freely stimulate others to mission entailing possible separation and suffering. In this way, as mystics have taught, God is calm and fully energized, remote and fully present, poor and rich, free and involved. God values both the security and the creativity of each and is qualified to send each human out in love despite indeterminate immediate fate. This is God's transcendent freedom amidst connectedness. For fallen man, this comes only after a painful process; in God it is abiding unity of polarity.

3. Powerfulness in history of the transcendent/immanent suffering Creator. When His object is responsive God can act with and through the object, to spread His standard of unification towards establishing the whole world of unity. Since God endures any suffering, His power not being determined by others, His freedom and justice transcend the world. God can always be just; the power of the causer of suffering does not affect God's force. This inner freedom of God is the foundation for His pure action. God's suffering affects Him only as giving Him information from the world. The non-actualization of God's love brings suffering to God's heart which is used as knowledge for the expression of love then appropriate, but the disunity and suffering do not affect the fact of God's loving. There is no sin of or in God, in Him is no need for forgiveness preparatory to justness. God's actions are always one with His heart and purpose.

God's responding aim for any being causing his suffering is to free it to return to Him. Ultimately He will liberate even Lucifer from his guise (role) as Satan and restore relationship with him. God has that freedom for unlimited helping. Ferre writes, "the solution to moral evil existentially means... will those dear to me be saved: If all that lives is dear to me... the question becomes, will all be saved?"77

Many have suggested that God suffers in sympathy.78 We understand that this view arose because the information received by God which causes Him suffering then causes Him to act for our liberation (preliminary to resuming His development). As Bell writes,79 in God there is a transmission of pain into a thing creatively used. In our view, then, any sympathy felt by God must not be something distant but a genuine feeling with that in creation which is still in unity with Him, that there is a direct line of feeling and not just an observation and comprehension of the feelings of another followed by a discrete "mental" response.

God is God for a bigger possible unity than any unity which may be destroyed. Ultimately, there will be the unity of all time and space, the coordination of all change, therefore all value feeds ultimately into God's kingdom. God's action of love, even if partly rejected and returning suffering, is not vain. God Himself is the harvester. Also, God never suffers alienation for He is exerting full optimum action for restoration and all will be restored, there will be full and ongoing creation; God is in all instances restoring and creating. Thus God's love is borrowed from Him but not stolen, just as a teacher's efforts are not stolen from him if a pupil is only slow to learn and/or commits remedied errors.

The concepts of sympathy and forgiveness are linked, and both bear further scrutiny so as, in turn, to throw more light on the Divine response to suffering and evil. The scrutiny is important also in order to point to functional unities of God and man, and to the relationship of hope and suffering. Then, what is the nature of identifying something as evil and/or as causing suffering? Clutton-Brock wrote, in 1921, that "The very definition of evil... concerns, not only the nature of evil, but our relation to it."80 Our viewpoint is first of all that this relation is not that of a sympathetic appreciation which itself causes no suffering. A book by Jacques Sarano, a physician, is insightful here. A central thesis of the book is that to call a thing "evil" is to see it in history and view it with passion, not being indifferent to it.81 A condition exists and it gives us pain, but, says Sarano, for us to name it as pain and call it evil is to express an impulse for change.82 From this observation, Sarano develops an account of the "unity of empirical knowledge and of eschatological knowledge... of knowledge and of hope -- the unity of hope and experience."83 Hope is the mediator between the underlying passion and the impulse for change in the face of evil, the revolt against objective evil. Then, Sarano says, I cannot revolt against objective evil unless I see it as objectively evil by awareness of its effect on myself, relevant to my concerns for the future.84

We can place Sarano's analysis in the context of our discussion. In this context we see pain as information received by a subject that an object, i.e. an entity with which he is in relationship, is altered in a manner indicative of its disturbance or suffering. The subject conceptualizes the existence of an evil condition, that is, a condition in existing circumstances which is disappointing and calling for re-direction and/or re-application of the subject's efforts. If the object is found to be corrupted the subject is aesthetically displeased or if the object is found to be imprisoned the subject is sympathetic (and if the subject finds himself to be the cause of the object's misery he perceives in himself a prior evil condition and may be repentant); however, in all these instances the precedent condition for the subject's findings and conceptualization is his own personal concerns which are affected, and the findings imply a personal negative judgment. That this information may be highly useful in no way alters the judgment of the disappointing condition as a blight. So the subject perceiving "evil" is affected, he desires to give love to and through the loved object, but is unable to complete a fruitful circuit of give and take action. To what extent he may avoid perturbance depends upon the degree and quality of his hope, approaching to the Divine or eminent virtue of assurance.

Presently, we are discussing continuing suffering. In continuing suffering a subject has been affected by a disappointing condition of alteration of his object and has not departed from the relationship (nor has the disappointing condition been wholly remedied). Continuing suffering implies a dynamic of the subject meeting resistance, along with a determination to change circumstances. Can this suffering suggest, of the subject, the emotional distance of "sympathy" which that term often connotes? Max Scheler, in The Nature of Sympathy writes that, characteristically, sympathy is always reactive, where love is spontaneous and free from this limitation.85 The fundamental dynamic of God, as Subject, is creative love; this preceded any appreciation; appreciation is external to it. The Divine appreciation is with love and the love is dynamic and creative. The dynamic of the heart of man, God's beloved object, His child, is also creative love. Clutton-Brock wrote that "if there were no life evil could not be."86 Creative love is interior to life. According to J. Y. Lee "sympathy is an emotional identification through a process of imagination" and is not in itself creative.87 We conclude, then, that the Divine appreciation of evil finds the dynamic of the Creator's love blocked by the disappointing condition which indicates the blocking of the true desire of man (causing human suffering); thus God's suffering is functionally one with man's. For this reason, God and man together face and combat evil. This observation undergirds that of the relationship between God's will and evil. Wyon's often-read comment may be rehearsed: That Jesus confronted evil daily and on Calvary shows us that evil is not the will of God but that the tact that we are brought into contact with it is His will.88

One can logically conceive that God might appreciate the cosmos in which man suffers as wholly good, wholly according to plan; however it is difficult to find in this concept any guidance for man who faces evident contradictions in himself and in the world. In the light of the above, a God who recognizes evil and is, as held by virtually all Western theology, working for its reduction and/or extinction must be said to suffer in some manner. This process of judgment and combative action is not, as Mascall points out, well comprehended by the term "sympathy".89

In view of our considerations of Divine appreciation and suffering, we turn our attention to consideration of forgiveness. Could any meaningful forgiveness be motivated by a remotely serene decision to countenance the offender? This is to put the question in an extreme form as a limiting point; there are several levels of possible motivations for meaningful forgiveness ranging perhaps from that of disinterest to that indicated by the passionate exclamation of the Messiah on Calvary during the very process of martyrdom.90 Thus, in the first place, God conceivably might be forgiving because not really caring. Archbishop Temple, based on his interpretation of St. Paul's letters, denied this position. He states that when God forgave, people thought Him either unrighteous or indifferent, but that the sacrifice of Jesus which cost God showed His hatred of sin: "There are two ways of expressing antagonism to sin; one is to inflict suffering upon the sinner, the other is to endure suffering"; neither course shows indifference.91

A consciously pioneering analysis of the dynamics of forgiveness is contained in an essay by Moule written in 1971.92 The heart of Moule's analysis, which is compatible with the Unification view, is as follows: "Real forgiveness is undoubtedly costly to the forgiver." The cost, of course, may not be to the extent of a crucifixion, and it may have been secretly borne (as in the case of the father in Jesus' parable of the prodigal). As in shared suffering, then, shared reconciliation supposes mutual and deeply personal involvement. "The wronged party will be less than his full self as a person if he is... not willing to pay for his gift of forgiveness" and "the offender will be less than his full self if he does not wish to compensate." "Although forgiveness is a costly gift," the offender "cannot purchase it for anything, but neither can he receive it as a gift without giving everything of himself." Also, the true repentance preceding reception of meaningful forgiveness means that "the offender conceives a burning desire to make reparation and to share the burdens of the one who forgave him." Moule is aware that love is not weighted. Payment is not an aspect of the relationship, but "cost does enter into the description of the process": there turns out to be a sacrificial output for both sides. "The generosity of forgiveness... wakes... an echo from the recipient, and he too gives out all that he has in response."

In accordance with this view we find that in the actualizing of forgiveness as well as in the experience of suffering which required the forgiveness, God and man are functionally united; then the forgiveness reveals reconciliation and is a further clearing of the way for the true functional unity of Creator and creature, the functional unity in love and creative activity. God, in forgiving man, in having won man's forgiveness, may be serene but not remote. God, acts in the world and all-spendingly.

God responds to the beings causing him suffering. God directly suffers with man.93 Evil affects man and God alike. Thus there is functional unity of God and man in suffering, in the combat of evil, in the actualization of forgiveness and in the loving activity of God and reconciled man. God is the initial investor, sacrificer, forgiver and developer; and God will harvest all value.

4. Limitation of the immanent suffering Creator. God cannot compel the restoration of unity which He requires nor will God alone create the conditions for uniting. God would have sent the Messiah to Adam and Eve at the beginning of fallen history if He would elevate without prior change in man. We know from experience that God does not work that way. God acted to limit the degradation of man94 and will always provide opportunity for and stimulation towards purification. He will offer a standard of love for sharing and cooperation towards a given scope of unity. When humans have fully responded God will reveal wider love.

God, Who is always restoring and creating, works His providence of external opportunity and stimulation for purification. God needs man's free participation in establishing a structure affording greater uniting.

5. Dependence of the immanent suffering Creator. God must depend on offering and then offering again on the basis of whatever foundation is established through response to His offering. Even if God might work something miraculous He is dependent, for its effect toward re-unification, upon man's perception of it and interpretation of it, that man might see in it God's Word for sacrificial actions. Insofar as God's offer is rejected the manifestation of His Word in time and space is retarded.

To a person or group externally powerful God delivers a Word of love and truth which is also a Word of judgment, for either the recipients will harken and make free power for God's work, or, in rejection will "harden their hearts," setting their thoughts against new hope, and become brittle and decadent so that they will not be an external obstacle to unification being developed by God with some other person or persons which should eventually benefit them along with all other persons.

God is dependent on human readiness to receive the guidance and leadership that He is ready to provide. In love He urges sacrificial action.

6. Defeats of the immanent suffering Creator. When man's efforts are blocked he may become confused; God's Word of suffering may cause man intellectual indecision resulting in psychologically caused suffering. Also, when man embarks on mission for God (offering to share love and truth and all their fruits), Satan may claim the first attempt. When man is rejected the result is more separation.95 The elect may be mocked because vulnerable. There may be social degradation, even assaults unto death. If man then rebels against God, God is locally helpless.

7. Immanent powerful expression of the transcendently suffering Creator. God who is free, can act within the limitation of His creation by stimulating the inner man through expressing heart, love and truth according to man's freedom to receive.

God expresses His heart-longing for greater unification, expresses the distance between the love and joy now possible in fallen circumstances and the ideal of love (in a sense, this expresses dialogue in God, His "prayer"). God expresses His desire to give and His truth that victory over evil comes through sacrifice. This is God's expression of love and truth in the process we call restoration through indemnity.96

In this expression God focuses His full spiritual power. God gives full attention to His ideal and the distance to it, to action towards its realization, originally the kingdom which is coming. God's attention is focused on the problem posed by disunity. Then with this attending, from His purposeful desire springs re-creative ability. So God specifically expresses His Logos: a part of the original scenario of creation still to be effected God expresses, in the circumstances, as a Word of sacrifice, a commandment. God fully expresses Fatherhood and in doing so articulates the suffering of all creation. And through one man God expresses Himself more visibly to others.

8. Grace of the immanent/transcendent suffering Creator. Kitamori97 writes that in our pain we witness to God's pain, but only believers understand this value. When one is willing to sacrifice deserved true love and unity for the joy of one rejecting him, ready to embrace him, his suffering shows the pain from unconditional love. From the fact that Jesus was willing to suffer such great loss to give us opportunity for freedom from slavery we consider that God was all along willing to suffer for the sake of our freedom. All pain witnesses to God's; if we know that, we can build on any foundation.

"The God we know is a suffering God, a heart-broken God... we must understand His heart so that we can take His burden upon our shoulders. That is the only way we can comfort God. We must stand in God's position where He was persecuted for many thousands of years. No one has suffered more throughout history than God."98

God is expressing the aggrievement of the innocent party and all His history of aggrievement and the full concentration of pent-up energy towards change.

One might argue that it is when God succeeds in further creation that there must be a lasting change in the mind of God (as He then has a new object and is to prepare for new creation), but that when completion of a creative act is delayed there is precisely no significant change. Yet we must articulate the desire of God blocked of fulfillment, the impulse of heart unstimulated by receptive opportunity and joy. So with the Bible we speak of the resentment or "grudge" of God or God's heart filled with grief or sadness, and that this grief is not one of withdrawal or inactivity. Despite the wound of heart the impulse exists, the purpose is unaltered, activity continues.

Through God's expression we may know God is fully present in His response to the fact of suffering. This supposes that there must always be some human capable of receiving and sharing God's heart at some level of love. The original mind (or "intrinsic heart") of every human is also aggrieved by historical iniquity.

Christians hope for the eschaton. According to Christian scripture, the eschaton will come when all hear the Gospel; also, it will come after much tribulation. We find a relationship between these conditions: in preparation for the eschaton God is to be more deeply understood and in the eschaton God will be newly manifest; then, if God is a suffering God we may well consider that He will be understood (and the Gospel believed) only through tribulations, which point through suffering to His suffering. These tribulations could occur in the course of witness to the Gospel, or, if witness falters the tribulations could result from God's laws dissolving present unities in order to arouse again the desperate longing for world unity. In The Politics of God, Joseph Washington writes that cognizance of suffering is a reminder that the Kingdom of God has not yet come, and it is essential for participation in efforts to bring in the kingdom.99

Christians holding that God suffers usually stipulate, as we have, a doctrine of unconditional love, along with a doctrine of special election. To those saying that God suffers, Noro100 then challenges with the question: Is fallen man inside of God's embrace or outside of it? And he further asks, if man's sin and rebellion lie outside of God's omnipotence, omniscience and omnipresence, how can He bring about His victory? General answers to these are implicit in Brown's statement: In reference to the forgiveness through the cross he said that the Son's great agony was also the Father's great agony; in it the Father "was laying hold on the lost world with the arm of His all-suffering all-conquering love and drawing it righteously to Himself."101

As we understand it, God is connected to each man's heart and offers a little more of what he desires. God does not withdraw but through the responding heart of man and greater foundations developed in extension of heart God confronts the separation in the world and urges restorative love. This judges. According to Kitamori, the love of God wins because the sinner cannot leave its embrace, even while rebelling, and because it judges.102 Thus Kitamori sees the sinner as wholly embraced. In our view, God loves all creatures, and readily embraces that which is brought to Him, offered to Him for participation in His creative endeavor. Then what of that not offered to God? We have said that a distinctive function of agape love is to create lovable value in others. In the sinless world there is no unlovable, and creation of new lovable value is unimpeded. For the fallen world God has, as Von Hugel says, "a love which loves... in order to render lovable in the future what at present repels love."103 (Such redemptive love must indicate that the Redeemer already loves those who are "unlovable," that is, those who repel His love.) We say that God's redemption is brought about through that which is devoted to Him. One more richly manifesting God witnesses to Him, attracting and drawing out that of God already present in his brother and further enabling the overcoming of that inner falsity which is the cause of all outward separation. Thus God does not embrace addiction, falsity or illness, but embraces the heart in the miserable. That which is healthy and yearning in sinful man exists in the unstable unity which is the sinner. God chooses the good part and offers power for liberation. This is God's pre-venient grace. Again, this act of grace is no compulsion, the attraction is both through the expression of suffering and the presentation of opportunities for love; with this two-fold action hope is aroused.

Noro asks, Is God said to be suffering to bring man back to relationship or to raise him higher in relationship?104 We may answer this. It is a distortion of love that is involved in addiction; therefore, God's preliminary aim is for purification of man and further restoration of relationship, and then God offers His love for manifestation by man, man thus coming the more into the embrace of God's fellowship and participating in greater scope in God's project.

God's long-suffering grace is to dispel man's accusation against God. This accusation is inspired by Satan (and his human agents). The original accusation against God is not that He does not love or desire creaturely welfare but that He will not or cannot help, that He does not have creative love sufficient for fulfillment of creaturely desire; from this accusation stems the temptation to seek fulfillment elsewise. The sinner knows of God's love at some level and in some fashion but accuses God and separates functionally from Him. In the sacrifice and forgivingness of God's elect, a sacrifice entailing God's suffering as well, God shows His all-out effort to help, and in inspiration, and in blessings given after sacrifice He shows His power to help. It is only through such grace of exemplary supernatural love in history that the self-centered sinner can turn and accept suffering for the sake of union with those who m he has presently not even encountered. We can say then, with Barth, that God, who is love, rejects the existing social order and comes amidst it to build something new out of it.105

Barth often reminded of the possibility of dropping from God's grace, holding that the choice to do so occurred through man's finite freedom.106 He also believed that the essence of creaturehood is the possibility of the disastrous choice. We affirm the truth in the Biblical story that God was fully available to first-created man and fulfilled all His promises and also taught man a commandment for life, yet man departed from God. We hold (with Noro) that man can become perfect in love through unity with God. If fallibility is the essence of creaturehood then either the Creator must countermand an essential nature of that which He created or else there will always be the possibility of falling, rather than an eternally assured Heaven. According to our understanding, the essence of man's creaturehood is his free love for God. In the Kingdom of God there can be no fall of man; if this be due to the overwhelming grace of God that would be an overwhelming love offered precisely in respect of creaturely essence.

Since the appeal to hope is crucial in God's work of redemption, it is important to determine the nature of hope, that is, for what may we hope. Noro107 has hope for man's perfection in love and that man will attain the unchanging blessedness of God. For Bushnell the hope was clear. He wrote that man will never have omnipotence but will be morally immutable like God, free forever of temptations. According to Bushnell, the immutable man "must have found his bearings in principles that do not change, in God." Man "so far has gotten the sure presentiment and germ of a perfectly unchanging change finally to be consummated." This is because the Kingdom of God is not yet established on Earth.108

In the Kingdom of Heaven God's grace will be fully humanly mediated. It is not only that mature humans will be perfect but that the Kingdom will be perfect. There will be care so that any immature yielding to a temptation would not infect, and full reintegration would quickly follow. There could be neither cause nor possibility of another fall from God.

Since God acts with pure offer, willing to suffer until we respond, we may well hope and expect that we shall be called upon to do our part in the transformation of ourselves and our world to become God's home and our home. And we may hope again for God's free, gracious and decisive action to afford us the opportunity to fulfill our responsibility.

God expresses Himself to and through human beings. The effectiveness of God's action depends on man's interpretation of God's action for apprehension of God's expression, and upon man's according action. Through one man God expresses Himself more visibly to others. God expresses suffering and Fatherhood: He expresses longing to realize the ideal of love, and His desire to give; He expresses the long-suffering aggrievement of the innocent party and the truth that victory over evil comes through sacrifice only; and God expresses, as commandment, a Word of sacrifice for further realization of His original scenario of creation.

The "intrinsic heart" or original mind of man is aggrieved by historical iniquity. Embracing in unity, amidst disorder, the heart of the miserable, God confronts the separation in the world and urges restorative love. God must arouse again the desperate longing for world unity revealed in the Gospel, the awareness of suffering essential for man's participation in establishing the Kingdom of Heaven on Earth. Then God will bring the eschaton. God arouses hope through expression of suffering and presentation of opportunities for love. Man should understand God's heart and take up the burden of God. The suffering, sacrifice and forgivingness of God's elect and invitational love witness to God and belie the original accusation against God.109 Since the essence of man's creaturehood is his free love for God, each can be attracted from the word of Satan and to overcome inner falsity. Man, fulfilling responsibility, is to adopt God's unchanging principles, becoming morally immutable and establishing God's kingdom of love and care where God's grace is fully humanly mediated so that there be no fall from God.110 It is reasonable to hope that God will act decisively to afford opportunity to separate completely from Satan, to be devoted to and embraced by God for participation in transformation of self and world to be God's home.

9. Freedom of the immanent suffering Creator. God stimulates man for the purpose of the welfare of all including God Himself, thus God's actions are dedicated and express dedication. God is the One giving; dedicating, not seizing; nor is the expressive action seized from Him, He dedicates.

This also is the model for man representing God. Bell writes: "sorrow, if we understand it and dedicate it, can release a vast dynamic which alone can build values, build them not merely in the sufferer himself but in the whole world of humanity." We must offer our sufferings to God, freeing the self and becoming co-creators with God. In this process we go beyond a present level of felt sorrow to seek remedy in a higher level of unification.111 This greater unification has innately long been sought by us.

Review. In Section A we gave an explication of the quality and content of God's action in history directly to the human heart and through human external activity, (i) according to the motivation and unity of God: the transcendent God is free to invest His foundation; the transcendent and immanent God is just in doing so; the immanent and transcendent God aims to free every being and will do so for their and His sakes, He will harvest all values. This is the restorational transcendence and immanence of the God Who is the Creator with just love, sight and sureness. The transcendent freedom in immanence of God is a model for man who should dedicate his sufferings to God. (ii) there is a junctional unity of God and man in suffering, in action to remedy suffering, in the actualization of forgiveness (reconciliation), as well as in love and creative activity. Functional unity of God and man is grounded on the communion of God and man's heart and points also to the unity in the manifestations of God. God's motivation to end suffering includes His eternal Personal desire for continuation of creation and increase of joy; this is the unity of motivation of God manifest as Creator and Redeemer.112 The same manifest God, Who created and creates, restores; the same God Who is manifestly unlimited by time and space manifests Himself in limited form and in the changing form of His creatures, (hi) With fallen man, God is the initiator. In His initiative He expresses truth and His aggrieved heart, revealing His love. Throughout history God has waited for the responder, revealing Himself the more greatly to the more prepared. He has depended on interpretation of His initiative. He has depended on the hope and endurance of those who have heard and responded. It is man's essential nature, as creature, to respond to God's grace, and each human will become and remain perfect in a perfect developing world eternally free of disorder. In His restorative initiative, God embraces, amidst disorder, the heart of the sufferer and all activated by that heart. God fulfills His responsibility. Man is also responsible for ending all suffering, to bring comfort and joy to God and to the whole creation, expanding the unity of desire, hope, appreciation and determination reflecting the unity of God and, in responding initiative, vitiating accusation in revealing to each other, and to all, God's love and God's love in man's love.113

Thus God's action is effective in restoration and the magnitude of its effect is determined by the internal responding and external activity of man. God is developing His world within the fragmented world, establishing the successive scopes of unity that would have been established in creation so easily had man not fallen from God but now are established at great cost, and against accusation, in restoration and re-creation. The development, through a limited number of stages of unification and marked by decisive action of God, occurs according to a time-process not wholly evident to fallen man.114

B. God and The Elect in the Process of Universal Reconciliation

In this brief subsection we show the relief of suffering through sacrificial restorative activity of man.

1. Way of suffering. In the course of restoration, for substantiated action towards ending suffering there must be with God the human also able to bear further suffering in the mode of God. There is a tendency for humans to retreat, in the face of frustration and suffering, towards comforts within smaller unities. Fallen humans should learn, from parental example, tradition, and a structure of family reciprocity, to absorb certain suffering. If the parental models are presently not available on earth then the tradition must be received from God (and/or learned from history).

If a human is to serve God he must first be attracted by and to God and desire to be not dependent on lower values available, in order to relate for greater value. As Messner states, love wants to expiate every injury against God, by sacrifice.115 A preparative condition of separation from Satanic enticement is established on completion of a sufficient period of voluntary detachment. The sacrificer will have experienced the depths of uncertainty and the temptation to despair is overcome. This way the pioneer becomes one with God, ready always to receive power, inherit it for spreading of unification.

For fallen man the only way to God lies through suffering and endurance. God Himself is not just a dreamer and observer. "Suffering, not just believing is the way to God -- first one must endure hell."116 When there is knowledge of readiness to suffer, one is not blocked by threat of suffering, much less by imagination of impending threat. Then one might expand the readiness for suffering from the individual level to the family level, national, and world levels. In doing this he is taking responsibility for suffering, and the greater responsibility overcomes resentment at that level of relationship.

The man who is ready to receive power for substantiated action towards ending suffering has been attracted by and to God, separated from dependence on available values after experiencing deep uncertainty, and gained confidence in readiness to suffer in order to form relationships of greater value. Ready to emulate God, he becomes one with God for the expansion in scope of the tradition of readiness to suffer. In taking responsibility for suffering man has overcome resentment at that level of relationship.

2. Way of Blessedness. God's grudge is satisfied at that level because man has turned from the temptation to seek satisfaction only from former values. Satan has not defeated God and man but is overcome at that level. Man is not so impeded. Although the whole creation is still shattered and God cannot pursue whole development so that He still has the great suffering, the blocking of God's developing of the individual, which also caused Him suffering, is lifted by a degree.117

Man's suffering and the suffering of God (Who stimulated man's desire for the missing unity) have not been vain, for after sacrifice man has and knows he has the desire and now is free to act on the impulse towards greater unification. In the pioneer who has dedicated his outwardness for the sake of greater unities God has a developed foundation for His work of reunification. The internal foundation will remain so long as the pioneer or one influenced by him remains dedicated.

The moment of decision is for mission. God's elect has come to a new way, for greater loving. To the extent that he now participates in God's fellowship and project the justified one has diminished self-caused suffering; but it is not only our own sins that cause us suffering. According to Koyama, in contrast to Buddhism Christianity does not call for the elimination of self but the re-direction of will.118 The internally liberated pioneer has the desire for sharing the way, he desires unity with others, made possible through sharing, for the establishment of optimum conditions for children to learn and practice the way; and he also recognizes as necessity that others join in or at least respect the way. Cognizant of his own desire and suffering, he recognizes that others are suffering, also seeking unity, and could be liberated to join. Furthermore, where he had sought simply to maintain values he had been that far isolated, resentful and ready to be resentful of others; if he is now both forgiving and desiring unity he will seek unification, willing to wait further for greater joy119

The mission is through suffering and after having suffered and through receiving the power for action from God. God has already shown suffering and that He has the power for mission entailing suffering.

The elect opens himself to God. This is "receptiveness to God"120 (Who is receptive to His own will). It is "to experience God," "to be attuned to the action of God;" "The spirit can assimilate God and become one with Him."121

While God's love flows more freely now, through the justified, it is not fruitful for a substantial foundation for restoration until the love is shared and there is cooperation with others on earth; the elect may yet be engulfed. There is this give and take between God and his justified elect: God says, I can bear your sacrificing in mission; and man says, I can bear sacrifice at this level and am willing to seek the desired greater unity.

Having become externally vulnerable man becomes internally strong; man becomes parental. Archbishop Temple wrote in Christus Veritas122 of the moral progress of Jesus Christ, saying that his will was "always one with, because expressive of, the Will of God."

The increase of freedom of the sacrificer to act responsibly marks a defeat of Satan and a relief of suffering. The sacrificer, who has forgiven, opens to God and receives power towards the cancellation of the consequences of many sins and the accomplishment of God's will. The ready elect chooses mission, desiring and needing greater unity, determined upon unification at whatever immediate external cost. In the dedicated and dedicating pioneer is a developed durable foundation for God.

3. Way of suffering blessed. In the process of liberation God is now organizing (rather than speaking only to the individual). The process of liberating may entail further suffering as God's power is sent with lasting effect in the world, towards substantial change.

This is the renewal of the life of God the Creator. Realization of His plan was interrupted and He cannot now resume it, yet he is working successfully for re-creation through the active pioneer. (God has created a resilient species.) But, in a sense, God bears the scars of any former disunity healed. Sinful, man always may slip back, and each human may be tempted at all levels if not receiving perfect nurture in a family in a whole society. As it is, even the fully committed may be tempted by the rebellious. So the scars will exist until the Kingdom of Heaven comes down to Earth.

As God's pioneer embarks to mediate God's unifying power, the Creator's life is renewed. Re-creation begins. Since in the careless fallen world each human may be tempted at all levels and might succumb, God will bear 'scars' until His kingdom covers the earth.

4. Way of justification. Man can count on as fact that God will endure suffering at any level (He having proved to endure any suffering at all). A human who is justified at any given level is one committed to endure suffering with and for God at that level.

Only through grace stimulating desire did the pioneer repent of the temptation to consume values at hand, then grace enabled him to remedy the internal circumstances of vulnerability to the temptation. He can expect grace in his sacrificial outward mission. Grace received while suffering is more valuable than physical healing.

The level of justification is the level of commitment to endure suffering as, with and for God. Grace preceded justification and grace will be available in mission.

5. Way of redemption. God and a justified man are in a secure relationship of trust. A justified human is to act with and for God to build up a group of humans at his level of loving, a community substantiating God's exemplary giving. Such a group is to broaden its scope so that it is ready to receive God's new Word for a higher level of loving.

God's commission, based on mutual trust, is towards communal substantiation of God's exemplary suffering at a certain level of loving, and further in preparation towards reception of a higher level of loving.

6. Way of redemptive suffering. In the process of group-building, God may send the newly justified human out from his home. (He may be rejected at home for his advanced standard.) In any case, he may find more frustration and suffering. He seeks to share and may find opportunity but be weak relative to objective hostility. But the justified one will not in this experience be separated from God.

(Even if he rebels against God when rebuffed by man, he ventured only because having learned to trust God; he knew of God's action and must hope that God will act again, so even if he cries out to God in despair at one moment he may yet easily reunite with God the next after only slight suffering from confusion and re-commitment. Preferably, he will know from God's victory in him that, even though Satan taunts, something of a pure offer is always received into a unity with foundational value.)

If God were not to send His chosen one to the world, God would get joy in him only and at that level of growth only. 'Vet if the one is sent, he separates from friends at home who might receive him (albeit with limited possibility for the spread of the standard), so he forfeits that joy and vitality, and if he then is not received in the world he is further deprived, suffering, and through him God suffers deprivation.

One who lived a high standard, having chosen suffering as discipline, was among friends and now is gone into the world; if scorned he suffers the alienation of his efforts; he may be imprisoned, become enslaved. So God sends him out only because not resigned to the suffering of others, but suffers, and because of the need to demonstrate the standard of loving to the ready, sacrificing, if necessary, to demonstrate, going God's sacrificial way. Such human suffering has worth as extension of God's suffering.

God has not given His justified only a new standard of purpose but a tradition. He has liberated the desire for an ideal world and given opportunity for participation in God's saving action. In this participation man gains happiness; but not yet true joy.

Sacrificial giving to offer freedom to another through a sharing of love and friendship, entails suffering; but once the unity is won, that level of suffering is over in victory, resurrection. With life in community structured for loving at some level there appears some joy. However, each human still suffers because the actualization of yet greater loving is blocked by attachments and/or the lack of receptivity in the world. For God and man the whole of restoration history is a circumstantially necessitated history sustained by desire for and hope for whole fulfillment and joy.

IV. The Proponence That God Will Succeed In Ending All Suffering In History

[Here we present the basis for the hope and conviction, in the Unification view, that God, who fully respects and promotes human freedom and has greatly been grieved by man, will bring about the permanent end of the suffering of God and man. In the context of the Unification perspective, that end will require the elimination of forces disrupting harmonious development. The hope for this fulfillment is linked to the Unification understanding of the origin and focus of these contrarient forces.

The limitations of this closing Section afford only a brief account and discussion, virtually an outline of the following: the origin of evil; the nature of God's scenario; the idea that progress is developmental, not just temporary; the belief that God will bring total victory over evil, not just progress towards that end.

The Unification view holds that the end of suffering cannot come without salvation requiring God's special, unique and decisive action. Lest eschatological action appear tardy, it is appropriate to discuss also man's role and responsibility in history, thus far and now, in the light of God's action.]


Our Unification account of the origin of evil tells of the innocence in Eden123 of the ancestors of all present humanity They were immature,124 together in a wholly opportune environment, and growing according to a tradition imparted by God, of spontaneous and full communicationsharing-and-cooperation in a common project centered on God: so their love for God and each other developed.125 In the events of the Fall of Man, however, their love became perverted, misdirected to illusory self-attainment. They fell both spiritually and physically (through spiritual relationship and substantial relationship) leaving themselves and their descendants internally and externally divided; loving wrongly (divided in purpose of love) and actualizing love wrongly (forming substantial conditions of unity apart from God's developmental creating). In the process of the series of interactions, the angel, Lucifer (created as a good angel for service to God and man but becoming jealous, then unbelieving of God's love for him, then seeking substitute love from man and finally seeking to monopolize human love for himself), fell and became Satan as first one human was spiritually seduced by him and then the one seduced the other in a disastrous substantiated interaction of loves. In this, the humans vainly sought instant fullness of love, eternity, apart from God and genuine care for each other;126 the same was true of the angel except that he sought the eternity of replenishment of love.127

At heart, man seeks to leave Satan and return to God; but man had come to believe Satan's word of false love. Far from God and alienated from each other, they underwent degradation of sensitivity and capacity and saw the degradation of their physical environment. Murder and war occurred. Man's conscious hoping came to have the most narrow focus.

God still acts for the completion of His original scenario of creation, but, due to the Fall, at every step He must overcome man's fallen nature of envy and self-centeredness. He also must save man from the most drastic effect of the Fall -- original sin derived from the illicit love relationship of the first parents centered on Satan, bringing confusion of identity and purpose and resulting in the grasping of unities which should be devoted to God.128

Several alternative accounts of the origination of evil are contradicted by this Unification view. One modification that has been suggested to us is that external misadventure in the course of exploration was ultimately responsible for the originating disunification. However, the children, growing in responsibility, must have known from experience that greater love and satisfaction comes through the way of cooperation according to God. Therefore, they should have maintained faith despite any apparently untoward circumstances. So, whatever the external occasion, the origination of all evil and suffering must have been a distortion of love, a seduction whose contemplation might have been avoided. It must have been a distortion of the greatest love possible since it blocked development to ideal maturity, and was not remediable by those falling. The Unification position is further supported in that children of fallen man experience deep conflict: the source of the problem should be found, in the parental relationship. The history of suffering begins with a false parental relationship -- each parent not responding to God, and the parents forming a very narrow union covered over with cross-purposes regarding greater value.

Outline of Restoration

How will God correct this deviance from the potential He gave His children? In the Unification view, God's scenario calls for a specified number of stages to be achieved in finite history, centered on the relationship of man and God. Where human interactions are concerned, these are stages of the expansion of social unity culminating in the unity of a globally unified human society with its spiritual and physical environment. The expansion of social unity, involving both mutuality of love and understanding and shared substantial activity, is based on the development of sensitivity and capacity and the trust that God works through the perceived natures of others and of self. Spiritual growth is interior to social unification, and this is interior to humanity's development of the physical environment. Thus, spiritual growth is interior to the development or complexification of civilization.129

The means by which God induces humans to love and trust Him and each other (and to act towards fulfillment of His strategy) have already been indicated in this essay. But it is important to clarify that there are specified stages in the development of love, capacity and trusting action. Each stage of spiritual growth enables comprehension and application of a standard for foundational unification based on a certain depth of intimacy and affording a certain scope of union. The application of such a standard characterizes an age of restoration history.130

There are only four ages of the restorational development of human society131 which may be demarked, therefore, by an initiating point, a culmination point and three intermediate points. In the fallen world, every relational sequence culminating in actualization and the readiness for new initiative follows this pattern of four time-periods demarked by five points. (In the ideal world, the initiating point and the first intermediate point coincide, so that what would have been a time-period in the sequence is wholly spiritual and timeless; the initiative of God immediately is accepted by His creature.) According to this interpretation of Unification Theory, at the first intermediate point in any sequence of developing social unification an example is established, an exemplification of love, love capable of a certain scope of unification. At the second intermediate point, a tradition of relationship embodying the standard of that scope of love is firmly established. This tradition leads to the accomplishment of the third intermediate point where a social structure in a society embodies the standard and relationships and affords easy propagation of truth and nurture of heirs. Progress from example to group tradition is tenuous; but a true tradition, being spiritual, indestructible and motivating, is bound to become manifest in a concrete, loving community132 The conditions denoted by these intermediate points are difficult to establish (for fallen man), but once (at the third intermediate point) a structure, a home base is established in purity, has gained spatial security and is dedicated to God, the culmination point will be easily reached and the society will then give birth to -- and be the initial host for -- an exemplar of greater love, so that a new history commences.133 Thus, in the over-all history, once God (at the second intermediate point) established among humans a firm tradition of His world-embracing love and commitment to His ideal, this must lead to the worldwide society substantiating God's love in social interaction (at the third intermediate point). This is a society filled with understanding of God's purpose and with rationally Supported hope. From this point the final providential age of governing the environment can move swiftly to the concluding point. This ends fallen history and marks the beginning of the completed Kingdom of Heaven on Earth and in Heaven.134

As indicated above, progress per se, even under God, cannot bring the total unity of God and man, for man must be purged of the original sin. In fact, the capacity for spiritual development, upon which depends all foundational progress, is limited by original sin. The commencement of the third age in providential history, for instance, could not occur until the spiritual tall of man had been indemnified. Jesus Christ was uniquely conceived, without original sin; he came to effect the full salvation of humanity and establish throughout the earth God's Kingdom, ending the ages of restoration history. He was rejected by other humans and executed, but God resurrected him and exalted him. Then he commenced the work of spiritual rebirth into a living hope, indemnifying the spiritual fall of man, and offering spiritual salvation to all who believed in him and Him who sent him. Rebirth is given through the interacting loves of God the Father, the resurrected Jesus (the Son of God, the Word incarnate) and the Holy Spirit.135 Thus, God the Father is in Jesus the Son, and Jesus the Son is in the human being to whom he is giving rebirth.136 The Holy Spirit also dwells in those given rebirth.137 So Jesus and the Holy Spirit stand in the position of spiritual parents to Christians who are their children of rebirth.138

Temple wrote, of Jesus Christ:

"He inaugurates a new system of influence; and as this corresponds to God's Will for mankind its appeal is to the true nature of men. So He is a Second Adam;... it was the inauguration of a new system of influence destined to become... universally dominant... by the spiritual process of mutual influence and love that calls forth love... by a spiritual transformation, wrought out... through the process of time and the course of history."139

Now, many religions and ideologies dream of and hope for the whole unity of mankind, and some labor for it. But in their actions they war on each other. Thus it is evident that there is still confusion of purpose and action. Furthermore, while the great religious and ideological traditions are skillfully propagated, they are often rejected by the beloved children of the propagators. In the past, then it has been clear that the final stage of human history has not commenced, the point of the true structure of love not having been attained, and the effects of the physical fall of man still being present.

Man still bears original sin substantially and suffers because of its consequences. He is unable to act wholeheartedly or unhesitantly and in true concert. In order to cross the threshold into the final age of man, a second Messianic coming is required on the foundation of the advent of Jesus 2,000 years ago. This time man must be saved spiritually and physically. Since the condition at the third point in a sequence is established on the basis of the condition for the second point, "in the third instance the providence will not fail to be realized."140

The Messiah comes when preparatory internal and external conditions are established. He comes when man has, at God's direction, established a foundation to receive the Messiah; this is the requisite internal condition. Had the children of the first ancestors established the proper foundation, God would have sent the Messiah in their original lifetimes, to lead the way of dedication and growth and to give rebirth at the appropriate point.141 As previously indicated, fallen man lacks faith in God and holds to that which is old; thus virtually every moment calls for repentance, fresh faith in the Word of the age, and sacrifice. The Messiah comes for the start of an age, for a new expression of God's Word. Then, how is his home base secured? The Messiah's initial base is established in the previous age. It involves conditions of unity. Historically, it has become secure and foundational by the reconciliation of foremost rivals in a society.142 This offering and level of love substantiated the standard of the age and is characterized by the people's uniting with parental figures in honoring that standard. This means that those preparing to receive the Messiah and with a foundation of faith in God's Word must accomplish a certain restorative act successfully, in the way of redemption previously indicated, so that a foundation of substance (that is, substantial foundation) may be formed. This then becomes a foundation to receive the Messiah.143 Clear examples in the Bible include those of Jacob and Esau and of Joseph and his brothers, who established foundations of substance to receive a new foundation in God's historical providence. Such foundations can also be laid between representatives of tribes or other social units, through the unity of the followers with their representatives as observed, for instance, throughout the Book of Numbers. In regard to the Second Advent it is consistent with this understanding, which has been explicated in detail in Unification theology, that in order for the now coming Messiah to stand on the requisite base, a worldwide substantial foundation is required.

God sends His Messiah only when his foundational base is of sufficient scope and potency, vis-a-vis other social realities, for the external circumstances to be opportune for the success of his mission; this is the external condition.144 The Messiah comes to liberate human love and actions to receive God's power for greater unification, that those who receive him may join in overcoming with love those with who m they have been in conflict and thus establish new unification. Conflict in history has spread from that within the individual human to conflict of brothers, tribes, nations, empires and cultures. At the worldwide level of conflict we expect to find on the one side representatives of religion seeking a unified world under God, and on the other, representatives of ideologies seeking a unified world centered on man. Some representatives are tempted to attack with violence. However, God's representatives must win only through love and truth. The coming foundation to receive the Messiah will be established with the sufficient unity of those committed to act in common sacrifice to realize God's ideal on earth centered on Jesus' standard of love. This must be a cross-cultural unity. Some have come to believe that now is also redemptive history, although not everything in it, and that in the Bible we are given the norm by which we can discern the divine economy present. We are then called to integrate ourselves into it and thus respond to the divine challenge.145


The coming Messiah must perform the work of unifying at the highest level. He must appear as the fulfillment of all religions, expanding the foundation of Christianity. Then he must embrace and absorb all the materialist ideologies by also fulfilling their hopes in concert.146 He must cause all to live as in one family.147 Furthermore, he must expand the standard of Jesus to embrace all the actualities of living so that all desirable unities, be they political, social or economic, become possible.148

The Messiah comes in order to complete the redemption of man from the effects of the Fall of Man, spiritually and physically. Through this he is to make possible the substantial unities desired. For this, the Messiah must be born as a human, as at the first Messianic advent.149 Because of the Unification view's particular understanding of the relation of God and man (His image) as reviewed earlier, there is no reason to suppose that God's powers of incarnation are limited to incarnation as one white male and to one time in history. In fact, a proper understanding of this relationship affirms the reverse: God should freely be able to incarnate, and every human should come to manifest in substantial form God's Logos specifically. Jesus, uniquely conceived, became the first perfect human, where Adam and Eve had failed; he was the first-fruits offered to God the Father. At the Messianic coming, not only the Lord of the Second Coming will stand as perfect but his bride will stand with him as perfect. In their perfect oneness, they will stand in the position of parents representing God on earth and forming a substantial trinity with God. Their relationship, as well as their individual lives, will be the standard for the unities to come; being visibly manifest and substantial it will well serve this purpose. Then all humans will ultimately form substantial trinities as families of blessedness, and every human relationship can take this form. Thus there will come to us God's incarnation and visible manifestation as a true husband and father and also His initial incarnation and manifestation as true wife and mother. They come for the establishment of Heaven, the Home, on Earth. They come in the context of the hopes and aspirations of all men and women of whatever race or identity, poverty or might, and of the aspirations of all creation.

Recognizing the world as present to be unified, a gift from God, benefitting from the understanding and traditions of the past and fulfilling his own responsibility to develop love and penetrate the truth and articulate it, the Messiah will comprehend and be able to clarify for others all the essential patterns of history, including the nature of Satan's original crime, the common origin of sufferings and the sequence of the Fall of Man. He will speak God's truth without parable, including the truth of suffering. Recognizing heartistic nature, the Messianic couple is to focus on an all-transcending purpose. With devotion to this purpose, man will see his dream of the future become the actual future, the spiritual and the physical become one. With this goal, and in hope, members of families participating in the social effort of the new society will be conditionally as in an Eden, grafted to the Messiah and able not only to know God's will but to do God's will freely.

Man's Responsibility

We can locate our responsibility towards realization of the ideal if we can understand God's action and the nature of creation and its development. If we understand the original deviation and how it came about consequent to man's free choosing, we can understand the remediation and man's role in it through a chosen course. Yet we find that man cannot complete the remedy. Fallen man cannot find the freedom for perfect choosing and cannot create that which was originally lacking. Therefore, since God neither supplied originally that lacking nor instantly liberated fallen man, we conclude that God must initiate salvation and bring it about through man, and that God must supply the lack but do it with necessary cooperation from man.

As elements of full security lacking at the species initiation, and which will be present when all potential is fulfilled we find: 1) parental guidance of the immature; 2) the condition that the loving guiding parents also be loving masters, under God, of the entire habitat, (finding mastering of the environment, as in most species, a condition for ideal parental care). This finding supports the revelation of the nature of the original deviation. Mankind has found from experience, and established in tradition, that in the environment given we need, in order to survive, not only expansion of relationships in individual life but the expansion and maturation of mankind as a species, for man must multiply throughout the planet in order to transcend local changes in external conditions and this future alone can insure healthy conditions for each and every individual. This purpose is stated in Genesis as given by God. But to multiply and fill the earth lastingly requires exactly that parenthood that can nurture children of cooperation (which is not instinctively programmed). A tradition of learned teamwork, familihood, should be a hallmark of human history. Man did not fully cooperate in his first habitat, therefore, else the spread throughout the earth would have been cooperative. Therefore we conclude that the foundational humans did not fully learn, will, and practice perfectly foundational teamwork but came to be functionally largely separate from each other and from the God of foundational and orderly development, uniting sufficiently to produce offspring, but not so as to be able to completely exemplify, teach or offer teamwork to their children.

Combining these observations and also existential observations we find also that man would not have fallen had they been aware of their full purpose of creation, had God's purposeful love been fully incarnate in them. From the foregoing, we conclude that man is now to respond to God's grace, exercise remaining freedom to separate from Satan and form conditions of purity for God's decisive salvific action to be established and received, and that in this event God must send to mankind True Parents who will fulfill the original responsibility to God and man. They will become loving masters of the angelic world and of the earthly "garden." In uniting and humbly serving as parents under God in the new creation, they will embody the true canon of normal growth and communicate it in an earthly home. Fully humanly mediating God's gracious love, as might have but did not come to pass at first, they, along with all other humans as their children, will end God's historical suffering for the end of all suffering.

The period of the possibility for suffering was precisely that period of initial human growth through which God sought to establish at the beginning His full incarnation in creation, that God the Creator be fully represented as God the Parent. Through the human fall that period was prolonged with great suffering. God gave the world to first created man, exchanging it for a spot in man's heart. Man broke the world and took it from God. But God did not count His loss as total -- He has that spot in man's heart. There has been restoration and there has been gradual reconstruction. There has been a drawing closer to God. As restoration develops, more of the nature of God's ideal has been known, more of His suffering, more of His powder and victory, more of His scenario of widening love. God's mode for change has been visible in created structures and was clarified in Jesus Christ, the Son of God. But God's poverty as regards the world has never changed, the betrayal of His original trust never completely indemnified, His original suffering never finally solaced. God has longed for the day when He could reveal His full love substantially through the truly parental couple who would transmit to true-born children the standard for whole unity. Only when such a family lives in the restored habitat can God finally see His creations fully in His image: exercising full freedom and responsibility, fruitful creativity and receiving the fullness of God's love that He had purposed to give. God is sure to see this Day on earth. This is the Unification view.150 The very fact that these steps towards God's fulfillment can be thought of and characterized within man's responsibility is itself an indication that the responsibility will be assumed.151

Sun Myung Moon has said, "Our heart of love, centered on God's love, must be enlarged and elaborated to reach out to the whole world." "God sets His hope in us, and we also have our own hopes, flickering like fires within us. But we have to multiply that fire and multiply our love to destroy the world of evil. We may now have only a flickering candlelight, but we want to shed light into the whole world. The light will be multiplied, and the whole world will be illuminated by it in God's love." He also said, "If you shed tears, sweat and blood for the sake of the whole world, you will find that God has been shedding tears, sweat and blood for you."152 This is the Unification view of God, suffering, and hope.


Please see the bibliography following the notes for full references.

1. The use of the pronoun is not intended to imply gender of God (see Unification Thought p. 9n.). The essay also uses "man" and "he" only as species-representative.

2. S. H. Lee, in Matczak, pp. 737-46.

3. Ibid., p. 732.

4. Cf. Solle, p. 42.

5. Unification Thought, pp. 16, 162-63.

6. So God, through Hosea, reassured the people, (Cf. Hosea 11:1-11, 12:9, 13:4-14:4), and again through the later prophets, (e.g., Isaiah 42:18-43:4).

7. Genesis 4:8-11; Hebrews 11:7, 2 Peter 2:5, 1 Peter 18:20; Genesis 13:14; Genesis 27:41, 32:1-33:20; Genesis 42:7, 14-24, 45:1-15.

8. Cf. Luke 15:1-32.

9. Acts 2.

10. Y. W. Kim, pp. 140-141.

11. Genesis 1:26-31.

12. E.g., Isaiah 46:8-10.

13. Genesis 3:8-21.

14. Brunner, p. 367-68.

15. See Noro, p. 217, on Von Hugel.

16. Schopenhauer, p. 400 (Vol. I, Book 4, Chap. 59).

17. Lavell, p. 41.

18. A scenario outlines a sequence of value realizations; it need not specify fully how the values are to be achieved.

19. Solle, p. 149.

20. Mastrantonis wrote that "for the normal development of love the fundamental condition is that there shall be joy in the object to which it is directed" and that "sorrow is in reality a search and longing for a lost joy." G. Mastrantonis, Christian Love, p. 4. Koyama wrote that it is because God is God that He is determined to create even if with suffering, (p. 149).

21. Solle, p. 102.

22. Noro, p. 305.

23. Ibid., p. 316.

24. K. Koyama, op. cit.: God who is love is prepared to act in history (p. 66).

25. See discussion in Mozley, pp. 117-19.

26. Divine Principle, pp. 20-21, 28-30.

27. Von Hugel, The Reality of God..., pp. 131ff.

28. Brunner, op. cit.

29. Noro, pp. 299ff.

30. Von Hugel, "Morals and Religion," in Essays and Addresses on the Philosophy of Religion, p. 206.

31. Solle, p. 162.

32. Weatherhead, p. 37.

33. Ibid., pp. 12-13.

34. Barth, p. 5.

35. Die Kirchliche Dogmatik, 1,1, pp. 310, 320.

36. Lewis, A Manual of Christian Beliefs, p. 59.

37. On the objectification of God, see Bonhoeffer, p. 34.

38. Cf. Christine Pleuser, Die Benennungen und der Begriffdes Leiden bei Johannes Tauler, pp. 73-94.

39. See discussion in Solle, pp. 97-98.

40. Of course, God's laws also have brought disasters to those who are conscientious and/or more or less continuously repenting. Judeo-Christian tradition preponderantly claims that these disasters would not have occurred had humankind taken the opportunity given by God to fulfill its potential. In any case, they will cease to occur when the potential is fulfilled, when humanity comes to full cooperation, collectively governing the cosmos with and for God in accordance with His spiritual and physical laws. This will become opportune only when man has become reclaimed from reliance on the illusion that present standards can afford full satisfaction.

41. On grace, symbolic sacrifice and the dynamics of indemnification of attachment, see John Andrew Sonneborn, "The Motivation and Dynamics of Restoration-through-indemnification," in The Unification Thought Quarterly, forthcoming, 1984.

42. Moore, Chocolates Before Breakfast.

43. Solle, p. 108.

44. Mastrantonis, p. 3.

45. Ferre developed a perspective on evil similarly, and seeks to correct a Whiteheadian position that every separation is an overall evil; pp. 25-27.

43. Solle, p. 102.

47. Alves: Suffering, when it engenders the negation of that which is, is the mother of hope (p. 120).

48. Young Oon Kim, pp. 38-39.

49. Buber, p. 315.

50. Ferre, p. 83.

51. Weatherhead, pp. 12, 37-38, 23.

52. Ibid., p. 20.

53. Lewis, A Christian Manifesto, p. 156.

54. Barth, Die Kirchliche Dogmatik, 2, 1, p. 622.

55. Quick, pp. 184-85.

56. Noro, p. 321.

57. Barth, The Humanity of God, p. 44.

58. Randlers, p. 175.

59 Heidinger, p. 149.

60. Noro, p. 97.

61. Solle, p. 100.

62. H. Bushnell, Moral Uses of Dark Things, pp. 330-31. He argues that immutability should not be grounded in omniscience or omnipotence which are quantities.

63. Young Whi Kim, pp. 30-31.

64. According to Savage, God is our parents with both the father's heart and the mother's heart, and suffers with the hurt children. God otters parental succor (pp. 212-13). It is not clear that Savage has thought of the implications for parental suffering when the child is bent on rejecting the succor.

65. Paton has a vivid account of the value of suffering in apparent defeat, and concludes, "one does not seek suffering, one seeks judgment." Alan Paton, in Creative Suffering, pp. 20-21.

66. Koyama, p. 66.

67. Ferre, p. 84.

68. For a Japanese view on Jesus' continuing suffering, see interview with Mokichi Okada, in The Christ Weekly, 1 May 1954.

69. This is also the view of Richard R. Niebuhr (p. 153).

70. The Roman Catholic theologian, Ladislaus Boros, in Pain and Providence, pp. 46-47, states that after physical life ends the soul does not become "a-cosmic": not wholly disconnected from material events, "it takes part in shaping and determining the events in the universe."

71. Mascall, p. 143.

72. Augustine, xiv, 27.

73. Cf. Hunter, pp. 126-27.

74. "The greatest suffering is not of the body but of the spirit. This is why it cannot be seen." Voluntary bodily suffering is evidence that spirit exists. Richardson, in Creative Suffering, pp. 119-20.

75. Boros, op. cit., p. 47, states the "the risen body needs the transformed, glorified cosmos as its sphere of being;" that the full resolution of "resurrection corporality" will be experienced "only when the world has entered into the state of glory."

76. Augustine, viii, 17.

77. Ferre, p. 31.

78. Some have then said that God will not always have sympathy for the recalcitrant.

79. Bell, pp. 10-11.

80. Clutton-Brock, p. 148.

81. Sarano, see especially Part II, chaps. 1 and 4, and Part III.

82. Ibid., pp. 107ff.

83. Ibid., p. 113. The theory is developed in pp. 194-204.

84. Ibid., p. 113.

85. Scheler, p. 142.

86. Clutton-Brock, p. 148.

87. J. Y Lee, p. 11.

88. Wyon, p. 52.

89. Mascall, p. 142.

90. Luke 23:34.

91. Temple, Christus Veritas, pp. 260-61.

92. Moule.

93. Bryden wrote that a love that is remote and objective to the other's hurts would be no love at all. God's love involves Him as our Creator so that He shares our suffering and joy. pp. 111-12.

94. See Gen. 4:9-17.

95. As distinct from suffering caused by uncertainty of conscience or defiance of conscience, suffering here resultant is caused by frustration of the conscientious attempt to give love. Paton, p. 18, suggests that these are two different kinds of suffering. We can agree only if first stipulating that both denote thwarted love.

96. See Divine Principle, pp. 222-27.

97. Kitamori, pp. 70-80.

98. S. M. Moon, The Dignity of God and Man, p. 8.

99. Washington, p. 169.

100. Noro, pp. 35ff.

101. Brown, p. 39.

102. See discussion in Noro, p. 53.

103. Von Hugel, Essays and Addresses, p. 160.

104. Noro, p. 35f.

105. Barth, Der Romerbrieft pp. 476-77.

106. Barth, Die Kirchliche Dogmatik, 2, 1, p. 566.

107. Noro, p. 305.

108. Bushnell, pp. 330-31.

109. In this manner, God and Christ established, on Calvary, the redeeming condition for spiritual salvation, for the resurrection of Jesus and that all wholly uniting with him might receive new spiritual life.

110. It is true that only in loving God and all that God loves can man avoid wavering; however it is man's given nature, long corrupted, to grow with God to feel God's heart and understand God's purpose. Perfected man will commit himself to another: then the triple bond between God and the couple can never be sundered. Divine Principle, pp. 82-83.

111. Bell, p. 11.

112. God limited Himself in Creation and had unlimited fulfillment of His desire. This is the self-limitation of the loving, giving Father. After man's fall, God accepted limitation of the fulfillment of His desire, continuing to suffer for the sake of future unlimited fulfillment of His desire. This is the accepted limitation of the sovereign as servant.

113. On God's love manifest in human love, see Unification Thought, chap. 4, "Ethics."

114 The patterns, factors, progress, and setbacks of restoration history are the subject of Divine Principle, Part II. A philosophy of history is initiated in Unification Thought, chap. 5.

115. Messner, p. 63.

116. T Miintzer in Solle, pp. 22-23.

117. Kitamori: "after the painful sacrifice God has forgiven and forgotten, and His love can flow more freely." (p. 246).

118. Koyama, p. 149.

119. Ferre wrote: "God never forgives, therefore, unless we also forgive all who owe us," because His forgiveness would otherwise be ineffective; "when there is full forgiveness all around, consequences of guilt are also eventually cancelled in nature." (p. 14).

120. Meister Eckhart, quoted in Solle, p. 98.

121. Ibid.

122. William Temple, Christ the Truth, p. 179.

123. The account is an interpretation of events reported in Genesis 1:26-3:22. Cf. Divine Principle, chap. 2, and Y. O. Kim, op. cit., chap. 2.

124. St. Irenaeus wrote: "God also was indeed able himself to bestow on man perfection from the beginning, but man was incapable of receiving it: for he was a babe." (Adv. Haer., xxxix). Lewis also held that the tradition of Adam as mature and falling is impossible since if mature he would have learned to deal with moral problems. (The Creator and the Adversary, p. 220).

125. Pp. 1-27 in Ladislaus Boros' Providence and Pain are recommended as delineating a position closely approaching that of Unification theology in these matters, and beautifully elaborating elements of that position.

126. This despite the fact that God had given them a commandment, saying that the premature attempt to consummate the fullness of love is death. This was a commandment for orderly growth in community, to protect them until they reached maturity and could relate perfectly with God and with each other.

127. For a fuller explication of this account of the course of the Fall of Man with the angel, commencing with the angel's motivation, see Y W Kim, op. cit. pp. 82-84.

128. On fallen nature and original sin, cf. Divine Principle, pp. 65, 88-91; Divine Principle Study Guide, pp. 92-94; Y. O. Kim, 64ff.

Rubem Alves wrote that God, through His suffering, "declares the inhumanity and falsity of the powers that dominate the present." Alves refers to all spiritual and practical powers; in our terminology the reference is to Satan and to all entities and forces manifesting him. Alves, op. cit., 120.

Bowker, in his extremely valuable book, Problems of Suffering in the Religions of the World, records that in Christianity are "two different ways of understanding the nature of human deficiency... it is to be seen as a consequence either of an original capacity for goodness which has not yet been realized; or as an original sin which has had its effect on all subsequent individuals, almost like a disease passed from one to another" (p. 82). To the Unification understanding, these are not exclusive alternatives: in addition to relative incapacity, there is congenital attachment to Satan; failure to wholly employ our capacity for life is evident.

129. Cf. S. H. Lee, Communism: A Critique and Counterproposal, pp. 193-213.

130. For explication, with sociological analysis, see J. A. Sonneborn, "The Providential History of Re-creation."

131. Cf. Divine Principle, Chapter 5, Section II (1973 Edition) 173-175; these ages are referred to as (1) Providential Age for Foundation of Resurrection; (2) Formation Age, or Age of Justification by Deeds (e.g. according to the law of the Old Testament); (3) Growth Age, or Age of justification by Faith (e.g. belief in the Gospel of Jesus Christ); (4) Perfection Age, or Age of Justification by Attendance (serving the Lord in person at His Second Advent).

Cf. Also Divine Principle, Part II, Section III, Nos. 1-6, (pp. 232-237). To that presentation may be added that the ages are characterized, respectively, by physical intimacy, that and external mental intimacy, those and spiritual (internal mental) intimacy, and those and intimacy of heart.

132. These points can be seen in the developing unification within each providential historical age. For example, in the first or preparatory age, for the establishment of a foundational family according to God's scenario of development, the initiating point was manifest in God's clothing the first ancestors with the skins of animals (Gen. 3:21), the foundational exemplification of love enabling a foundational family is reported in the Biblical story of Abel's faithful and loving husbandry of animals (Gen. 4:3-4), the tradition of relationship based upon faith in God's valuation of the laws of the natures of physical substances and upon corresponding human respect, fidelity and responsibility, is reported in the stories of Noah (Gen. 6:9,19, and 12 -- 17, 8:1, 11-22, 9:5-11, 20), and a purified home was finally established, as reported in the story of Jacob and Rachel (with Joseph) at Bethel in the land of promise, having buried divisive idols (Gen. 35:1-10). Then they found full unity, security and dedication in Egypt with Joseph. Similarly, in the next age for unification as a foundational nation, the central revelatory stories focus on Joseph (Gen. 37:5-17, 39:6-10, 41:36-57, 45:4-15, and especially 50:21 and 24-6), Moses' mother and Moses (Ex. 2:1-12), Moses (later Joshua) and the Levitical tribes and the other tribes of Israel (and the tribes of Canaan), and, after a failure in Solomon's time (paralleling that of Abraham in the previous age), the establishment of the purified Second Temple in Judea (a multi-tribal home base, later re-established by John the Baptist even as Joseph later re-established the base of Jacob's family in the previous age). Cf. Sonneborn, op. cit.

133: For example, Jesus came to be conceived in Mary's pure person and was to live and benefit also from Mary's purified family and John the Baptist's purified society. He was born in Judea and there his work commenced.

134. Since the patterns of individual growth, and even of the sequence of repentance, sacrifice, evangelism and establishment of assemblage, and especially those of restorational development within each age and in overall history are congruent (that is to say that there is a similar pattern of stages within the stages of a whole), historical development is best graphed as a spiral (and a multi-dimensional one at that). Cf. Unification Thought, pp. 99-101.

135. I John 5:4-5, I Peter 1:23, John 3:3-6.

136. John 14:20-23.

137. Acts 2:4.

138. Cf. Y. W. Kim, pp. 197-98, entire.

139. Temple, op. cit., pp. 182-183.

140. Divine Principle, p. 365.

141. In that case, the development of full human maturity would have preceded the expansion of social scope to the national, world and cosmic levels; in Eden, full maturity should have preceded the blessing of marriage and establishment of family life. The most rudimentary standard of love enabled the foundational family of Jacob's family. When family life is in the perfection stage of individuality and the capacity for perfect cosmic life is achieved the fullness of personality will be invested and originate in the family unity.

142. Divine Principle explicates this relationship in relation to the Cain-Abel archetype (e.g., Biblical revelation illustrates God's unceasing effort to restore the model of relationships true to His original principle of creation.) As God's work proceeds through history towards its ultimate goal of full restoration, the unity of the symbolic Cain and Abel initiates a new level of success in God's restorational task. Examples of this restoration process in relation to history and scriptural accounts are typified by the story of Jacob and Esau (1973 Edition, p. 278), Joshua and the Israelites (1973 Edition, early relationship, pp. 321-322, later relationship, pp. 332-333), the resurrected Jesus and his disciples (1973 Edition, p. 361.)

143. The process of establishing foundations of faith and substance in order to have a foundation to receive the Messiah is depicted in detail in Divine Principle. Cf. especially Part II, Introduction, Section I, and also chapters 1 and 2.

144. For examples of external circumstances evaluated as having been not opportune even though the internal foundation was laid, and for examples of external circumstances said to have been opportune although no internal foundation was established, see Divine Principle, pp. 280, 339; 423-424, 429, 453-454.

145. O. Cullman, Salvation History.

146. Cf. Y. W. Kim, Divine Principle Study Guide, pp. 5-6.

147. Ibid., p. 21.

148. Cf. Divine Principle, pp. 127-133.

149. On the coming of the Messiah with a new name, see Rev. 19:12, also Rev. 3:12. On the Messianic coming in humanity, see Divine Principle, pp. 510-512, 363-364.

150. In this essay, suffering has been linked to creativity, not as necessary to creation but as thwarting it. Satan is presented as one who could have continued supporting creation but instead became the interrupter of growth and creation. Therefore, the state envisioned as consequent upon God's victory in ending suffering must be a creative state, in which man finds not just contemplation of God and immortality in God but unity with God in creative activity.

151. See Sun Myung Moon, Past and Future Generations (esp. p. 8).

152. Sun Myung Moon, "God's Grief in New Hope, pp. 103, 99, 102.


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