The Sufferings and Temptations that Moses and Jesus Faced
Sun Myung Moon
June 23, 1957
Let Us Be Strong and Bold and Restore the Lost Land
Chung Pa Dong Church
People who upheld God’s Will had to fight an invisible Satan initially and then a visible Satan. What kind of heart did Moses keep in walking the path upholding Will of God? Moses resolved deeply in his heart to fight God’s enemies to uphold God’s Will. In the wilderness, he determined in his heart to fight the Amalekite tribe, to fight starvation, and to go forward courageously anywhere without a regard to his own life.
Moses battled Satan — wrestled with himself and fought hunger — for a total of eighty years, during the first forty years of his life in the palace of the Pharaoh, and during the second forty years in the wilderness of Midian. When he won the battles, God called him.
Moses was not the only person who went such a path. Jesus did, too. For this reason, Jesus himself faced the temptations from Satan that signifies the showdown with Satan. First, in order to conquer himself, he fought against hunger through the forty-day fasting period by using himself as an offering. Next, to overcome a desire for material, there was the temptation, “Make this rock into bread.”
The reason why Jesus had to go through this process was that because of the fall, humans lost God, lost their dignities as sons and daughters of God, and lost all things. Thus, conditions were required to find and reclaim all these.
For the same reason, today’s saints must walk this course where they face the temptations of Satan, who represents the world of evil regardless of the level they are at — as an individual, as a people, as a nation, or the world. Instead of experiencing the glory as God’s son or daughter, they must go the course of the cross that still remains. Then, they have to overcome the suffering of hunger due to the loss of all things to Satan.
In Egypt, the Israelites united with Moses with the same heart and determination as his; and thus, defeated the temptations from Satan. However, when they were confronted with hunger, while fighting the Amalekites in the wilderness, they came to resent Moses. Then where did this resentment against Moses derive from? Why did they come to resent Moses? If they had been born in the wilderness and had followed God’ will while living there, they would not have resented Moses. However, the habits they developed and the living environment they enjoyed during the life of four hundred years in Egypt became obstacles to overcome when facing the difficult living conditions in the wilderness. You must keep this in mind today.
In other words, the Israelites departed by believing in Moses, but could not let go of their lingering affection for the previous living environment. Thus, they perished in the wilderness. It interfered with the path of Moses and separated them from Moses.
Consequently, Christians worldwide, the second chosen people who are to fulfill the ideology for the restoration of the land of Canaan on the worldwide level, should be proud of being God’s chosen people, even if they are faced with times of hardships like those of the first Israelites. At the same time, we should not follow the same footsteps as the Israelites, who perished due to their complaints and faithlessness when they were faced with starvation in the forty-year wilderness course. They could not understand the viewpoint of the leader who came alone on behalf of the people.
Who destroyed the future destiny that Jesus was to tread? They were the people who were chosen to fulfill the will of God on behalf of God, human history, and all humanity. They should have led a life to fulfill God’s will and set the standard of life of faith at the time, but failed to do so. Just as the Israelites, who should have upheld the Will that Moses maintained, caused him to perish in the wilderness, the same chosen people who should have upheld the will of Jesus killed him on the cross because of their faithlessness.
Inheriting Moses’ will, Joshua and Caleb led the second generation of the Israelites into the land of Canaan. Similarly, today, the second Joshua and Caleb inherit the will of Jesus and lead the second generation of disciples and apostles to enter the land of Canaan on the worldwide level and build the Kingdom of Heaven on earth in that land. This is the hope of Jesus, and the ideal of the Second Coming.
Thus today we who are called to fulfill the will of God should understand the historical background of the providence and should never commit the same sins on the level of the people. You must not become the ones who will repeat the same sinful path as the Israelites walked.