Why We Have to Go Through Hardships

God’s Will and the World
Why We Have to Go Through Hardships
September 11, 1972
Soo Taek Lee, Korea

Any religion must pass through hardships in order to reach its ultimate goal. Why is this necessary? According to the teachings of the Principle, man fell into the non-principled realm. Man still has the form of man, but, viewed from the standard of God’s original ideal, he does not have the internal value which corresponds to the principle. In order for fallen man to find restoration, he has to so the opposite direction, the way of recreation. According to Principle, God is the subject and we stand in the position of object.

If man had not fallen, the subject and the object would have accomplished the same ideal. But, because of the fall, although we are standing in the position of God’s object, we do not have the value of God’s objects; God cannot relate with us as His objects. Why did God create man? The first purpose was to have a being with whom He could relate as His object. The second purpose was that God Himself had to have a form through which to communicate with all things in the invisible world and the substantial world.

From this viewpoint, what kind of being is Adam? The invisible God manifested himself in the substantial form of Adam, in order to stand as the subject in the substantial world. God’s third purpose for creating man was in order to fulfill His ideal of love. In that ideal, the subject and the object were to become one, God wanted the ideal world of love to remain forever. God created man centered upon these three purposes. In His act of creation, God had to pour out His power. Power is given from God, who is the subject, to man, the object. God’s power has to be given until the object becomes perfect.

God’s ideal is accomplished only when the subject and the object become one in this way. In order to go up to the perfection level, as the Principle teaches us, we must pass through three stages. This process is the period of growth and at the same time it is the period in which God pours out His energy. When His power is given totally, and when we stand as His objects, God’s power can be returned to him. Viewed from the ideal of creation, God’s love is born on the level of perfection. The power of God’s love cannot return to Him unless the object’s ability to reciprocate is perfected. Without love, the energy which God has poured out cannot return to Him. To create the objective being, then, is the work of God Himself. In order to make those beings exist, some power must be sacrificed. This is the original reality of creation.

Our path of sacrifice

Accordingly, as human beings who have to go along the way of recreation and restoration, we must go through that path of sacrifice. We cannot recreate ourselves by ourselves; we must go with God’s help along the path of pouring out energy for the realization of the ideal self. We are standing in the position in which God must pour out His power again, so there must be sacrifice. Since this is the original standard of the Principle, a religion which seeks the ideal world or the perfection of human beings must go the way of hardship. We must sacrifice our self-centeredness; in proportion to the degree of that sacrifice, our original nature from God is restored. As the result of the fall, we must go this way of recreation; accordingly, religious people must go through the way of hardships. This is the fundamental point of recreation.

In the development of His creation, God created the angelic world prior to the physical substantial world. The angelic world is not the place in which God could fulfill His ideal of substantial objective beings. The creation of the angelic sphere was part of the process to the final purpose. Then God, together with the angels, created the substantial objective sphere, the physical world of all things.

God, together with the angels, created man, God’s objects in the spiritual level were the angels. Man as a substantial being is in a different position from angels. God made angels to stand in the position of objects, admirers, and consultants. In that way He could receive stimulation from the intermediary angelic world in the process of the creation of. man. In each stage of the creation of man, angels as God’s objects gave gratitude and stimulation to God, so that God received joy in the process of creating man.

God was expending all of His energy in the process of creating man. But He was able to receive joy because the archangel gave Him praise and comfort. Since God created man with the angels, man must accomplish the value and purpose of angels as well as the unique human purpose. Therefore, man has dual values. God aims for man’s perfection, while the archangel has hope for man and assists him. In other words, Adam must become the perfected being of the ideal of the archangel, and he must also become the perfected being of God’s ideal.

Then why did God create Eve? God and the archangel and God and Adam are in a one-to-one vertical relationship. It is an upper-and-lower relationship. They stay at one point on the vertical line. If the archangel stands in the central point, God also has to stand on the same point. The objective sphere is needed because that is where the vertical relationship is enlarged. The purpose of creation is to apply the vertical relationship to the horizontal level.

When everything is perfected, God and the archangel, or God and Adam, will stay only at one central point. God created Eve in order to enlarge this vertical point on the horizontal plane. Thus, vertical love is developed into horizontal love.

Adam is the being who stands in the position of perfecting the archangel’s purpose and he stands as the central person of God’s ideal. Accordingly, it is Adam who stands in the position of perfecting the purpose of the archangel and of God.

God created dual objective beings in order to develop His vertical love on the horizontal plane. Adam and Eve were to become one, centered on God, to allow that power of vertical love to be connected horizontally. However, since this was not accomplished due to the fall of man, God’s dispensation up until now has been to restore this position again. The archangel’s mission must be fulfilled first, since God created the archangelic world first. Next must be the accomplishment of the purpose of Adam, who should stand in the position of God’s objective being. If he stands as the perfected being of God’s ideal, the ideal of vertical love can be developed horizontally. This is the objective world of creation which is the Heavenly Kingdom centered upon God.

The creation of Eve

Children have a vertical relationship with their parents. Through their experience of love with the parents, children learn how to love others. After they are united with the parents on the vertical level, they know the way to unite on the horizontal level. The vertical relationship is the subjective one and the horizontal relationship is in the objective sphere. God created the objective beings, Adam and Eve, in order to develop vertical love on the horizontal level. If Eve had not been created, man would have stayed only in the vertical relationship to God and in the same position as the angelic world.

That was not God’s ideal for the substantial world. God had to create the substantial world in order to develop His horizontal ideal. The representative of this horizontal ideal is Eve. When Adam and Eve become one, they form a reciprocal subject-object relationship with each other. On the basis of unity between Adam and Eve, God becomes the vertical subject. Accordingly, they should function as the intermediary beings of God’s love both vertically and horizontally. So Adam must have Eve beside him. When they become one on the horizontal level they naturally become one on the vertical level. Once Adam becomes perfect, the power which God expended in Adam’s behalf can return to God even stronger than before. This power, which stimulates God, is what we call love. The love returned to God is a much stronger love than the love which God has given. Therefore, God can feel great joy.

Parents love their children, and they don’t mind sacrificing for them. The heart of love is contained in their sacrifice; therefore, no matter how much energy they pour out, it returns to them as stimulating love. The more they give out, the more joy they feel. That is the power by which they can overcome the pain of sacrifice.

A man and a woman as well feel joy, even if they must make sacrifices for each other, to the point of giving their lives. One can feel infinite joy, even if one pours out infinite power. By the same token, love returns to God as a stronger power than that which God initially save out. Through this stimulation, God can feel joy.

Sacrifice in itself is consumptive; it is a minus force. How can one feel joy by becoming diminished? Viewed from the horizontal standard of the secular world, it is absolutely impossible. However, it is possible because of love.

Why did God pour out His love? Because through a relationship of love between subject and object, an eternal give and take action is set in motion which multiplies God’s power. Therefore, we can conclude that eternity is not established without love and we can also say that God is love. According to mechanical or physical laws, there is no time when output is greater than the input. But in the realm of God’s power, the result is more than the original.

Sacrifice behind love

Accordingly, a true parent-child relationship, a true husband-wife relationship, and a true brotherly relationship cannot be established unless we relate with sacrificial love. The genuineness of those relationships depends upon that standard.

Children know that their parents truly love them when they truly sacrifice themselves for them. Although the sacrificial position is a sorrowful one, if the children perfectly appreciate it and return love to the parents, then the parents can feel more joy.

Likewise if a true couple sacrifices far each other, then love can constantly bc restored in addition to the power of sacrifice. Therefore, husband and wife can become one eternally, if they share their suffering with each other. True friends are those who sacrifice themselves for each other. The position of love can be established when one sacrifices oneself and gives himself for others. Thus sacrifice accompanies love.

God could not truly love man up until now because man fell and did not achieve his perfection. Thus God’s love could not be returned by a perfect object.

If someone truly desires love, he should stand in the same position as God and give everything until the perfection of his object of love, as God does. Parents give everything until their children grow up and get married. They have to sacrifice everything and give everything until their children understand the sphere of parental, heart. If the children appreciate it and give filial piety to their parents, then the parents feel joy, forgetting all of their sacrifice. This is the way of love.

From the Principle and God’s point of view it is absolutely impossible for us to reach the perfection level unless we go through sacrifice. It is the way of restoration to work and recreate the ideal self so that one can reach God’s standard.

God created the archangel and Adam in order to achieve His ideal of love. In the course of restoration, therefore, we must go through the principle of recreation. We human beings must restore the sphere of the archangel first,

The way of faith requires the restoration of the invisible substantial sphere, or the realm of the archangel. This is the sphere of process, during which we need to have a life of faith In the process of our life of faith, we must restore the path of the archangel through history. Viewed from the principle of restoration, we go up from the age of servant of servants to the age of servant.

After that, we must go up to the level of adopted son and into the realm of true son, which is the original standard of perfection. This is the standard upon which the bridegroom and bride, perfected Adam and Eve, can establish ideal horizontal love. We must go through the process of the archangel and the process of Adam’s growth, receiving God’s vertical love until we reach perfection. When we can make a departure to the horizontal level. Accordingly, God’s goal in history up until now has been to complete one person, Adam, who can stand in the position of God’s object. Thus, Adam becomes the central figure on the horizontal level. If God and Adam become one and Adam and Eve become one, then God and Adam and Eve become one. At that point the vertical and the horizontal are perfectly united by love. Wherever they go, they are filled with joy. We call this environment the Heavenly Kingdom.

Since God’s ideal of the Heavenly Kingdom was destroyed because of the fall, we must recreate it. Here the problem is the existence of Satan, but if the archangelic sphere is perfected, Satan must disappear. The perfection of the archangel is not done by the archangel but by the perfection of Adam. If Adam is perfected, the ideal of the archangel is also perfected, and Satan has no place to exist in this cosmos.

Since the archangelic sphere is imperfect, Satan can still exist, but once perfection is accomplished, he cannot remain Therefore, the perfection of Adam is the ultimate and most important task. That is why God has been working up until now to achieve the perfection of Adam. The perfected Adam is the Messiah.

To go back to God, fallen man must first become the servant of the servant, who is the archangel. The best master is the master who works for the sake of the servant. And the servant must find this master. The fall destroyed God’s ideal by centering love upon oneself, God’s ideal is love. Therefore, where one’s love is self-centered, the way of restoration can never be born.

No complaint is allowed

Why does God require us to have obedience? It is not for the sake of God’s joy but for the sake of man’s joy. God puts man in the position of His ideal object and gives him the responsibility of completing the purpose of recreation. Thus, man must push away and overcome the factors of the fall. Because the fall originated from disobedience, God must order us to have absolute obedience as a necessary condition to restore this. Therefore in our religious way of life we cannot complain. We have no excuse; we must have absolute obedience.

Absolute obedience is a hardship, but the purpose of hardship is to set conditions to allow us to stand in the perfected position, and achieve God’s original goal of creation. Therefore, if we undergo hardships and sacrifice, we can come to stand in the perfection sphere. We must go this way because there is no other way, and religion cannot but emphasize the necessity of the way of hardships.

In order to overcome the way of the fall, there is no way other than the way of absolute obedience. God has no choice but to require this of us. In the way of restoration, complaint is never permissible. To follow in the path of absolute faith and obedience, we must go hopefully and joyfully. This is the way of recreation, and therefore it is the way of hope. We cannot go this way crying and weeping with despair. Sacrifice and hardships are the instruments by which we give everything and gain everything.

Which religion has shown the greatest love in history? A religion which teaches the greatest self-sacrifice is the one which is able to love the entire world. Christianity is a religion founded upon martyrdom. It has spread throughout the world by the sacrificial shedding of blood. Therefore, among all the religions, Christianity has shown the greatest filial piety in front of God. We can conclude that the world must return to God centering upon Christianity.

How long can you continue to sacrifice with a heart of love. This is what determines whether you have victory or defeat. However, if God is our true Parent, does He rejoice or feel sorrow when His children have to suffer? Even in the parent-child relationship of this fallen world, no parents want to cause suffering for their children.

Then, why does God make man walk this path of hardship? God’s situation has been most painful as He has to lead this dispensation? If we can understand God’s situation, we can feel how miserable He is, No matter how much hardship we may have to go through, it is only our lifetime; our life on the earth is within one century. Therefore, it is the way of filial piety and loyalty to offer daily encouragement to God. Those who complain selfishly at this point are cosmically unforgiven and unfortunate.

When we try to bridge the gap between ourselves and God, Satan is always working to destroy this bridge. Who defends this bridge? Only God and the spiritual world know. People do not realize how miserable are God and the angelic world, who have to do recreation and go the purpose of restoration. The longer the delay of perfection, the more God must stand in His unspeakably miserable position,

What would you do if you had to stand in God’s position? Even though we go through hardships, it is not longer than the few decades of our lifetime.

You say that you have worked hard in the Unification Church, but for how many years? The oldest ones here are only about 15 or 16 years in the church. There are many members with less than 10 years; in that case, to say it’s hard or painful is ridiculous.

Fallen men have the miserable destiny to carry the cosmic debt, yet cannot find the way to repay it. It is unthinkable even in a dream that we should raise our faces to God in complaint.

We who understand the misery of God’s position must show filial piety to the parent. When one tries to alleviate the suffering of his parents, he becomes the man of the greatest filial piety.

The sacrifice of the Messiah

Who is Abel? It is Abel who can restore God’s objects of love to God by going through the way of hardships. Thus, he must subjugate Cain by the heart of love. On the horizontal level, Abel stands in the position of God. Just as God loves fallen man, Abel must have the heart of love toward Cain and restore him at the risk of his own life. The way of Abel is the way of sacrifice. In that way, God’s love can be actualized on the earth. Everyone bows his head to the one who offered his life. Thus, the history of Abel became the history of shedding blood. This is the fundamental teaching of the Bible.

How miserable is God who has been standing in that position, driving the historical dispensation! The Messiah is the one who carries the responsibilities of the entire world and says to God, “Please take a rest. Give me the whole cross, the way of all indemnity.” This is why Jesus could pray in the garden of Gethsemane, “Please, not as I will, but as You will.” If God is suffering in the spiritual world or in the earthly world, then the Messiah has the sense of mission to shoulder all the sufferings of God. Therefore, even though the Messiah suffers he doesn’t even think of it as suffering. No matter how much we do, we must feel sorry before God. As fallen men in the way of faith, we cannot find anything like self-pride no matter how we search for it.

What was the fail? Everything was observed from the self-centered viewpoint and the result was complaint. Finally, there was rebellion. Therefore, complaint is not permissible for believers.

Once you begin the life of faith, you must deny the consciousness of self. Don’t compare! Peter had to learn the same lesson. When he was told about the cross from Jesus, Peter asked Jesus what would happen to John, Jesus told him, “It doesn’t matter. Just follow me.” Once you begin to compare your situation with others, you begin to have complaint. The eyes with which you compare are the eyes of Satan. Those eyes inherited the blood lineage of the archangel.

So, erase every bit of self-centeredness. When you completely deny yourself centering upon God, you can be completely vindicated by God as a result. Complete liquidation will result in complete indemnity; complete indemnity opens the way to recreation.

This is where the essence of religion lies. If one does not know this essence, it is really hard to follow a religious way. Religious scriptures cannot be clearly understood.

If one makes a tremendous sacrifice for the sake of God, even God himself bows his head before this offering. Through such an indemnity condition, both God and Satan come to bow their heads. Perfect recreation becomes possible through perfect denial. Therefore, don’t complain in the life of faith. You may say, “I can’t give anymore,” But, you should conclude whether or not you can give more only after you have done your very best until death.

To complain is essentially to accuse God. But man has to repay God, so, we human beings must absolutely not complain or say such things to God. My life up until now has been like that. I could never become a man to complain, even though I were put in prison and tortured to the point of vomiting blood. Even if the entire world opposed us, we can be grateful if we know that our relationship with the satanic sphere is being cut. It is natural that we receive opposition as long as the sphere of resentment exists.

Don’t complain. Be grateful and let us go our way in silence.