Cheon Seong Gyeong – Sun Myung Moon

Book Seven - Etiquette And Ceremonies
Chapter Three - Worship Service and Etiquette in Church Life
Section 4. Sermons Must Bestow Grace and Inspiration

4.1. The practice of giving sermons

Sermons should be given with the same intensity of feeling as a woman who is in childbirth. You must focus all your attention there. When you stand before the podium, you must feel like a pregnant woman on her way to the delivery room. If you reach that level, you need no preparation. The content of your sermon is not the issue. The issue is whether your heart has reached that level. (96-168, 1978.1.3)

During sermon time, a boundary is created that decides who enters heaven and hell. If someone conies to our church thinking, "I've always wondered about the Unification Church, let's see how it is!" but then is disappointed with the sermon, saying, "What kind of sermon is that?" it is the same as cutting that person's throat. Giving sermons should be a serious occasion, even more so than when a judge passes sentence in Court. (96-169, 1978.1.3)

The most difficult thing for a person to do is to speak in front of others. When you stand before people and speak to them, everyone pays attention to you. They all listen or criticize or judge for themselves. That is why it is very difficult for anyone to speak in front of many people. (39-150, 1971.1.10)

Church leaders must always supplement their sermons and supply whatever members need or anything that can be of assistance to them. (36-12, 1972.5.10)

Without having deep experiences, spiritual leaders cannot do their work. They may prepare their lectures by referring to books and give their sermons based on books, but is God within those books? He is not. God exists as a divine spirit, and your sermons will not be effective if you do not connect to His spirit. (76-151, 1975.2.2)

When you give a sermon, if the members know you have already given a sermon with that title before, they will not like it. It is similar to the desire of people wishing to feel the change of seasons. People are not always happy just because it is morning. There are days of depression even when there are few worries.

Even though it is such a nice and invigorating day, you can still feel depressed. Then what do you do to get over this? If there is no stimulus to help bring about this change quickly, go and find a more depressing place. By going to such a place and putting yourself into an environment that is contrary to yours, you can find new stimulus. You can also supplement your current state by creating a new stimulus through which you can directly overcome your situation. If you cannot find solutions and manage your everyday life, you will not be able to offer spiritual guidance to many others. (30-126, 1970.3.21)

You need to offer something fresh. You have to inspire them somehow. Supplement this with prayer if necessary. If that still fails, you should place your life on the line to make a difference. (30-26, 1970.3.21)

If you give an ill-prepared sermon and no one receives inspiration from it, even if you give all your strength and there is still no result, you must come back and spend some time wailing regretfully. It is a shameful thing. You must feel ashamed. That is how you develop yourself. (96-168, 1978.1.3)

When you eat rice in the morning, you eat new rice, right? There must be some fresh flavor. In the same way, you must give new things. From a spiritual aspect, you should supply something new, like a health supplement, and add flavor to it. You would have to add seasoning to give it a new taste, a sour taste, a salty taste, or even a bitter taste. (75-176, 1975.1.2)

If you gave a sermon for one hour without giving any inspiration, you have to repent for three hours. This should be clear to you. If you give a poorly delivered sermon and you do not inspire them, you have to repent in excess of three times that time period.

As for any life form, water and care must be given. But if you do not give it water, and instead take water away and overturn the planted soil, you will be responsible for that. Even after the audience has left, you must bless them and pray for them centering on that day's speech. (160-194, 1969.5.12)

You may want to say on Sunday, "Where in the Bible shall we read from? Break out the hymns! Break out the Holy Songs!" Do not do this. This is not what you should do. Center your words on your knowledge of people; use real life resources and relate them to comparable passages in the Bible. Give an interesting sermon that compares personal experiences with the content of the Bible. Then the mind of that listener will be completely blown away. When he hears about his own experiences, he will like it. Do not attempt to do it by looking at books. Books come from people as well. You must know that people themselves are the original books. (46-284, 1971.21.17)

Church leaders should undergo many hardships. They should go through a lot of life training. They need to experience the lives of a poor laborer, a beggar, a top executive, even someone with the highest authority. Then, with all those experiences in such a public position, your testimonies will be more real. (160-194, 1969.5.12)

4.2. Sermons of True Father

I spend more time praying for members than praying for the sermon itself. I pray with sincere investment: "Heavenly Father! What must I do to raise these people? Is it this or is it that?" Then I give the sermon as my mind directs. (9-81, 1960.4.12)

There has never been a time when I prepared for a sermon: preparation came through daily life. When speaking from life experiences, it is impossible for it not to touch the hearts of everyone there. (16-345, 1966.10.14)

One time I had to dig a tunnel at Hungnam. We became so hungry while we were working that I could not lift the tool that my hand was grasping. We were on the verge of collapse. When we heard "Lunch time!" you cannot imagine how wonderful that sounded to our ears or the feeling of that moment of being able to eat after laboring with pick and shovel. Oh, that rice! I have had countless such experiences that serve as raw materials of a living history. (30-152, 1970.3.2)

These miserable situations in the path of restoration are not things that destroy me, but things that will be glorified in history. So I must go on until the day comes when I can gather all of God's hidden treasures. I could speak for one hour on any subject. But if I spoke for only ten minutes on this topic, and these suffering experiences were revealed to the people of the world, everyone would break out in tears. Where can we find a sermon topic that is better than that? (30-152, 1970.3.21)

If you have an intimate relationship with God, do not worry that you did not prepare for your sermon. You need that kind of experience as well. Even when I meet famous people and must speak up to ten times a day, I must talk about different things each time.

But do I prepare for each and every one? My heart at those times is to completely have the consciousness of an offering. There is no "I." There is no concept of my existence. There is no sense of having possessions. Heaven is with us when we stand in a position of absolute dedication. (60-348, 1972.6.18)

You must always be aware of what direction I am taking. If you fall into step with me, it will be the most effective thing for your sermons. It becomes a motive for you to give inspiration.

The problem is trying to find out why I am doing a certain thing. In order to meet my level of heart, you must lift up your heart and think about how you will go in my place and represent me. If all of you move in unison as an object to me, then heavenly fortune will come. (60-349, 1972.8.18)

When you give sermons on Sunday, you must be serious. If I were you, I would not get any sleep. How could one sleep? Giving a sermon is like giving an injection in order to save other people's lives. It is the same as giving a rejuvenation shot. We need to give members one week's worth of medication and rejuvenation shots. You must lead from the serious position of a doctor who gives a shot to a patient who is on the brink of death. That is why when you go to the podium; it is like going to the place of execution. (75-476, 1975.1.2)

You should be sweating when you give a sermon. Sweat should be running down your spine. It has to be done with tears and sweat. This is an ironclad rule. (160-194, 1969.5.12)

There is no need to worry about your sermons. There are over two hundred volumes of the sermons I have given during the course of my life. When you have an interview in the spirit world, will you say. 1 never saw them or read them." I won't even translate them into English. It is a serious matter if you go to the spirit world without reading these.

It is a serious problem if leaders do not read these. (173-76, 1988.1.3) 

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