Cheon Seong Gyeong – Sun Myung Moon
I want to express my heartfelt gratitude to all of you as world leaders representing every walk of life for gathering to celebrate with and congratulate me on my eightieth birthday.
In particular, I would like to offer my deepest gratitude and all glory to God who has accompanied and protected me until this day. I have lived my entire life with the earnest desire to solve the many difficult problems related to realizing God's ideal of creation. I came to realize that God does not sit on a throne of glory and honor, but rather is a God of sorrow, lamentation, and suffering, endeavoring to save His children who fell into hell as a result of the Fall. Knowing His will and heart, I have worked with single-minded determination in devoting my entire heart and energy to accomplish His will, without regard to the time of day, changes in the seasons, or my circumstances. Looking back on the eighty years of my life, I realize I would not be here with you today were it not for His help during that time, notwithstanding being oppressed and persecuted.
On this day of such great significance, in order for you to understand human history and the world from the perspective of God's providence, I would like to speak on the topic, "The Path for America and Humanity in the Last Days." From the historical perspective of God's providence of salvation, the Last Days are those of the evil history of Satan's sovereignty and the starting point of the good history of God's sovereignty.
Accordingly, they are the time when God's entire providence is to be accomplished; that is, when perfection of the individual, family, ethnic people, nation, world, and finally cosmos are to be realized. Each time God heralded the Last Days in the course of His providence, He sought to guide human beings through an ideology centered on Him, but they failed to fulfill their portion of responsibility to stand in the position of goodness and terminate evil history.
Yet, as God is eternal, unchanging, absolute, and unique, so also is His will; therefore, through the true individual, family, society, nation, world, and sovereignty, He will surely build the world in which He can freely operate both in heaven and on earth. Then, what is the original world which He seeks? It is one centered on true parents; yet, due to the Fall, we lost the true parents of humanity and the true world from the very beginning of history. That being the case, nothing in the world -- whether our country of residence, human ideology, or anything else -- can connect us directly to true parents; therefore, we ourselves should first restore trueness.
Thereby, the day when true parents, spouses, children, citizens, creation, sovereignty, and the true universe can move and settle in unison with God's true heart on earth will signify the final days of the evil world. The time when such an ideal will be realized is the Last Days, the Second Advent. As such, when the Lord returns, there will be no cataclysmic phenomena such as judgment by fire, the destruction of Earth, or believers levitating into the air. Instead, it is a time when history entangled with tragedies will be untangled through indemnity paid to establish the individual, family, society, nation, and world, which were lost in the vertical course of history and will be restored horizontally in the present day. We have been longing for such a day, and that is the final destination at which we all should arrive.
However, individuals, families, and nations have lost their way. All kinds of problems such as air pollution, famine, religious conflict, and racial antagonism are constantly arising throughout the world, causing all manner of disputes. Who is going to take responsibility for this world? This is a serious matter. Communist countries in the past could not transcend nationalism, nor can today's superpower, the USA, transcend Pan-Americanism. When a nation places its self-interest first, it will not be able to lead the world. We need a people or a religion that is willing to sacrifice its interests for a higher purpose and strive to build an ideal nation that embraces all humankind. With this view, in response to God's command, I came here to America and poured all my energy to educate its young people, reawaken it from its moral crisis, and revive its declining Christianity.
You might be curious about what I am teaching them. It is actually simple.
First, it is to live for the sake of others. More specifically, my teaching is that the individual lives for the family, the family for the tribe, the tribe for the race, the race for the nation, the nation for the world, and the world for God. Then, God will come to us. In the family, parents are to live for children, children for parents, husband for wife, and wife for husband. Those who live for others more than themselves will become central people of goodness.
Second, I am teaching people to love their enemies. God Himself sacrificed Jesus, His only begotten son, for the salvation of human beings, who through the Fall, became the children of the devil, Satan. Satan could not help but surrender voluntarily before God who loved His enemy's children more than His own. Satan always strikes the first blow, but loses out in the end; whereas God's strategy is based on the formula of initially being struck and later recovering what was taken from Him. Despite undergoing much persecution and hardship throughout my life, I was able to lay the foundation of missionaries in 185 nations throughout the world because of living in accordance with this heavenly principle.
Even when studying the history of Christian missionary activities, we discover that theirs was a path of being hunted down, persecuted, and martyred. In the course of such a 2,000-year history, this trail of blood became the fertile soil for the emergence of the democratic world, but today, Christianity, which once was the driving force for democracy, is facing a crisis. Christendom is denying God, Jesus, and God's providence. Ultimately, when looking at theologians who deny God's existence and even assert that He is dead, how must God -- who has been treading the path of all manner of sacrifices in search of His true children -- feel in His heart?
For whom has God been investing and sacrificing everything so far? It is not for America or for Christianity itself, but for you and me as individuals. Since the Fall started with the individual, so also should salvation. Accordingly, unless a representative individual appears with the realization and determination to take full responsibility for this age, pay off all the debts that humankind has incurred throughout history, and become a person who will make God indebted to him instead, restoration will not be possible. Restoration through indemnity can never take place vaguely; it cannot be abstract. Without having the heart to experience more misery than God on His behalf, we cannot reach His heart.
Have you ever prayed earnestly for the six billion people of the world with the heart that your own children are dying? How much sacrificial devotion have you offered to save a family, a tribe, a race, a nation, and the world? Nobody can be easily confident of this. The returning Lord comes to the world with such an absolute standard as the representative of all humanity. God, who has been guiding the providence of salvation, found Abraham 2,000 years after the Fall of the first ancestors and made his descendants the chosen people of Israel by multiplying them on every level, as a new family, a new tribe, and a new race.
The Jews became the mainstream chosen people called to receive the substantial Messiah to come in the future, based on that victorious foundation. At the core of that mainstream, the standard and ideology -- which our first ancestors Adam and Eve should have reached and fulfilled -- need to be restored, which is the very concept of the Messianic ideology, with Christians in the position of the Bride. Christianity's most important mission is to make preparations in order to qualify as the Bride to welcome the Lord as her Groom.
Despite the significance of their mission and calling, owing to Jesus' crucifixion, the Jewish people vanished as the first Israel, leaving Christianity to inherit their mission as the second Israel. We are now in the final stage of God's 6,000-year providence centered on one purpose. What is the core concept of the Messianic ideology? It is the teaching to save and unify the world that can build original ideal families and restore the true parental position lost by the Fall of our first ancestors.
Based on the teachings of the Old and New Testaments, the Messiah comes with the authority of his Father, meets his Bride who embodies the Holy Spirit, and restores the true parental position. The Bride and Groom at the marriage supper of the Lamb prophesied in the Revelation to John refer to the stage of becoming true parents by first becoming true spouses. Jesus came with this mission. He lost his people and nation due to their faithlessness, but offered his life for the sake of the world and the Kingdom of Heaven that God desires.
The path of Jesus suffering on the cross was the same path of tribulation that God Himself walked. In such a situation of trial and tribulation, Jesus desperately prayed, "Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do." Even in the place of death, he blessed Rome and the crowds that had opposed him, pledging victory in the future. Accordingly, his life did not end at the age of thirty-three, but with God's help, he bequeathed his spirit historically to Christianity, without which it would not have become a world religion.
Ladies and gentlemen!
Currently, America is recognized as the world's superpower, but unless it stands straight aboard God's providence, it will not continue to prosper.
In the history of human civilization, ancient cultures arose mainly in the tropics and subtropics, examples of which include those of the Mayas, Incas, Egypt, India, and China. Were it not for the Fall, civilization would have begun in the temperate zone corresponding to spring; instead it started from the tropics and shifted to the cool-zone corresponding to autumn. This is the temperate zone civilization centered today on the free world based on Western Civilization. In general, measured from the equator, nations such as America, Britain, and Germany lying north of the Tropic of Cancer are the developed nations of the west. With the end of the cool zone civilization of autumn, the frigid-zone civilization of winter comes for a short time. This is the appearance of Communism.
Many intellectuals may think that the Cold War ended with the dissolution of the Soviet Union, but materialism and atheism are still prevalent throughout the world, replacing the two major ideologies of democracy and communism, both of which are gradually losing power.
God's ideal of creation should have begun in the temperate zone civilization of spring, but due to the Fall of our first ancestors, human civilization degraded to the level of savages and started in the tropical zone. Now, the temperate zone civilization of the true spring that humankind has been pursuing from time immemorial will appear, overcoming the crisis of the cool-zone civilization and the threats of the frigid-zone civilization. Who will be able to melt the winter of the frigid-zone civilization? It is not possible through power, economics, science, or knowledge. As we can see from this movement of civilization along rivers and coastlines, its center is always on the move. The river civilizations which arose on the shores of the Nile, Tigris, and Euphrates Rivers passed on their cultures to those in the vicinity of the Mediterranean Sea: Greece, Rome, Spain, and Portugal. These bequeathed their fruits to the Atlantic civilizations of Great Britain and the United States. All these fruits will be harvested in the Pacific civilizations of the United States, Japan, and Korea.
From the perspective of the history of civilization, the Korean peninsula occupies a very important position. Its north is the culminating point of the frigid-zone civilization linking Russia and China, and its south is the culminating point of the cool-zone civilization linking the United States and Japan. Thus, it is consistent with the providential viewpoint that Korea gives rise to a temperate zone civilization representing the springtime of world history and having the capability to digest both the frigid and cool-zone civilizations. From this aspect, the fact that Rev. Moon -- who has dedicated his life to solving the North-South problem and the East-West problem -- has come from Korea, can only be described as the consummation of God's providence.
In fact, throughout my life I have developed a movement for 'One World Under God' transcending race, ideology, and nationality in accordance with His providence. This is a principle of providential history and not a theory that I specially devised. Being enlightened regarding God's will, in order for me to not only teach His plan as a theory but also to implement it, there is no part of the five oceans and six continents that my activities have not outwardly reached.
Through the foundation of multifarious missionary and business activities in Alaska, Antarctica, the countries of the former Soviet Union, the 33 nations of Latin America, and throughout Asia and Africa, we are making preparations to solve problems that humanity will face over the coming millennium, such as environmental pollution and famine. In recent years, I have worked in the Pantanal and Amazon regions of Brazil to lay a substantial foundation to protect the Earth's environment. On the other hand as regards the internal aspects, I have worked through the International Holy Blessings and the True Family Values Ministry. Some 430 million couples around the world have participated in these marriage blessings, adding further impetus to the building of God's long-awaited kingdom on earth based on ideal families.
Ladies and Gentlemen!
Up until now, countries possessing superior power politically, militarily, and economically have controlled the world. Yet, no nation can exist eternally unless it is in line with God's providence. The fall of the once glorious Greco-Roman civilization is a good example of this.
The United States, which today stands tall as a superpower, is in the same position as Rome was in the past. The fall of Rome occurred more as a result of the internal cause of moral corruption than from any external invasion. Moral corruption caused Rome to lose the support of heavenly fortune. In recent history, political forces favoring proletarian materialism and the materialistic view of history went so far as to take control of over one-third of the world's population and two-thirds of its land area, including the former Soviet Union and China. Even that could not continue forever.
The time will come for religious leaders who speak for God's will to rise to prominence. Religious leaders are prophets, who must declare God's will on earth and indicate the direction that humanity must go.
However, the splintering of denominations and the struggles among religious groups that we see today serve no purpose other than to hinder God's providence. Thus, I have for years devoted more than half of our church's entire budget to ecumenical and interfaith activities so as to contribute to the resolution of sectarian strife. I also founded the Inter-religious Federation for World Peace to facilitate harmony and unity among religious groups and to promote world peace. Most recently, I founded the Inter-religious and International Federation for World Peace and this body has held seven international Hoon Dok seminars.
All humankind must transcend race and religion, understand God's providence to realize His ideal world of creation, and ultimately unite with His heart. We must recover the heart-based relationship with God that we lost as a result of the Fall and restore the original parent-child relationship. Thus, the Last Day that God has promised to us is the day of the appearance of the True Parents. In other words, it is the day when human beings, who lost their original parents as a result of the Fall, will again be able to meet them. Thus, the True Parents are the fruition of the desires, hopes, and victories of human history.
The Unification Church has worked to disseminate this tradition throughout the world through the international mass weddings. The fact that black, white, and yellow people are able to come together as brothers and sisters transcending ethnicity, race, and skin color to form loving couples is among the most significant factors in building the global village that accomplishes God's will. Today, through this, humankind is beginning to recover the lost original relationships among brothers and sisters, husbands and wives, and parents and children, in order to ultimately liberate God, who has been in the depths of sorrow ever since He lost His children. Only then will the path to true happiness be opened.
Until now, democracy has advocated human freedom and liberation. In contrast, we must advocate God's freedom and liberation. When this issue is resolved, human liberation and the recovery of human freedom will follow automatically.
There is profound significance in the fact that I am speaking about God's providence today in Washington, DC, the capital of the United States.
In many ways, the United States is a nation prepared through God's blessing. The ancestors who built it were the Pilgrim Fathers, who risked their lives for the sake of religious freedom and came here seeking a land of liberty. In pursuit of true religious freedom, they left their beloved parents, brothers and sisters, and hometowns behind, and were even prepared to cut their ties to their motherland as they crossed the Atlantic Ocean at the risk of their lives.
When the Mayflower arrived in New England in November 1620, it was already late autumn. While they endured their first winter, more than half of the 102 people who first arrived died of the cold and hunger. What was particularly remarkable about them was that many died refusing to eat the precious grain reserved for planting in the following spring. The Puritans strongly believed in serving God's will in every aspect of their lives. After taking in their first harvest, they gave thanks to God. They first built a church and a school, and it was only after that that they set about to build houses where they themselves would live. In the course of their pioneering, the Pilgrims began every activity with prayer. This was true whether it was plowing a field or fighting a war. When George Washington was at Valley Forge during the War of Independence, he must have prayed with great desperation. In that battle fought for the sake of His will, God lent America a helping hand.
The king and citizens of Great Britain, a global superpower at that time, were united in fighting that war, but in America, it was fought by God and His beloved sons and daughters. Isn't this how the United States came into existence as a nation of religious freedom? Even now, the United States Congress opens with a prayer. Your president is sworn into office by placing his hand on the Bible, and a member of the clergy gives the invocation. Even your currency bills and coins are impressed with such a beautiful inscription, "In God We Trust;" no other country does such a thing. This is how the United States has become a Protestant country uniquely reflecting the diverse peoples of the world.
What about America today, though? Prayer in public schools is officially banned. The theory of evolution is given preference over creationist ideas in education. The divorce rate of around fifty percent is completely obliterating the sanctity of the family. In 1971, I left my family and homeland to come to America because I heard God's voice sharing His concern about the current state of affairs here.
Upon arriving here, I exclaimed that I had come as a firefighter to a burning house and as a physician to cure a diseased America. Even then, I discovered that God was leaving this country. It should have been possible to find Him anywhere here, but He was departing from the hearts of people, families, and schools. It seems like only yesterday that I stood on Fifth Avenue in Manhattan and wept openly as I held on to God to keep Him from leaving America. Unfortunately, America has persisted in going the way of moral deterioration, as I prophesied.
Ladies and Gentlemen!
Why does Rev. Moon continue to cry out to Americans in spite of all the opposition and suffering he endures? It is because I know better than anyone the blood, sweat, and tears that God shed in the course of establishing this nation. During the past thirty years in America, I have not spent so much as a single day in comfort.
Who owns America? It is neither white Americans nor black Americans. Its true owners are those who love it as God does. Also, because God has chosen to invest it as the nation with the birthright of the firstborn in building His kingdom on earth, even now, Jesus is spiritually present mainly here, and is offering earnest prayers that His purpose be accomplished in America.
In 1982, in accordance with God's will, I founded the Washington Times here; ever since then, this newspaper has led American public opinion as a conservative news medium showing the path that the nation must follow. Also I have built up a strong movement for national and global salvation through the True Family Values Ministry and the Pure Love Movement for young people. I have invested in America in expectation that this country would stand upright for God's providence. When I visited this country in 1965, I blessed an area near the White House as a holy ground, and even today many people gather there and pray for America through the night. I hope each of you will open your heart to be able to hear the earnest desires of the Pilgrim Fathers and the many patriots throughout American history.
The dawn of the new millennium is the time in which God's six-thousand-year providence of salvation is concluded and His ideal of creation, which was lost in Eden, is realized throughout the cosmos.
This is also the time when the creation, which lost its lords through the Fall, is liberated from its lamentations, when the Parent and His children who have long been separated reunite, and the new heaven and earth, where there are no tears, will be established, and the age when there is free communication between the spiritual and physical worlds, in which God's Kingdom will be established. It is the age when the living God's direct dominion will become apparent through His omnipresence and omnipotence. It is the age when East and West will come together centering on the Parents of heaven and earth as 'One Universe Under One God' so that the global extended family of humankind is formed on earth. This means the perfection of the Completed Testament Age, in which the promises prophesied in the Old and New Testaments will be fulfilled. That time has come. The time has come when America must awaken once again. It is time for the country as a whole to create a new movement to establish God-centered true parents, true families, a true nation, and a true world. In this way, America must stop God from leaving and welcome Him back.
God worked for six millennia before establishing America. If He leaves it, where can He go? If this country serves Him diligently, then family, moral, juvenile, and racial problems will be solved naturally. When this becomes the place where people of all races can live together in harmony, it will be a model for His kingdom on earth.
It is time for us to stand together to open the way that humankind must go. It is time for America, as God's firstborn nation, to take the lead in serving Him and to complete its mission of guiding and leading the nations of the world to Him. I ask you to join with me in accomplishing this historic task.
Again, I would like to express my sincere gratitude to you distinguished guests for your presence here. I would like to conclude by expressing my hope for the beginning of the new millennial kingdom overflowing with peace, freedom, and justice in heaven and on earth.
May God's blessing be with your families and your nation. Thank you.