Christmas In Heart

Christmas In Heart

Sun Myung Moon
December 25, 1973
Belvedere International Training Center
Tarrytown, NY
Translated by Bo Hi Pak

Today, as you know very well, the whole world is celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ. My topic for Christmas, 1973, is “Christmas in Heart.”

Jesus Christ came to the earth to save the world as the Messiah. That was necessitated by all the sin and iniquity caused by the fall of man. If Adam and Eve had not fallen, the whole world would have become the realization of the ideal of God; the purpose of creation would have been accomplished, and all mankind could have experienced God as a living reality, literally creating the kingdom of heaven upon the face of the earth.

This world would have been the world of happiness, true love, freedom, and true joy and excitement. And that is the world in which the ideal of every man will be realized on every level; as an individual, as a family, as a tribe, clan, nation, and the world. God wanted to love His ideal individual and ideal family, and He wanted to love an ideal people, nation, and world. That would be the realization of God’s creation.

Because of the fall of man, God’s ideal was not realized. Therefore, ever since the fall of man, the work of God has been the work of restoration. God is almighty; He is determined to restore the fallen world to the original one, and the realization of His ultimate will is going to be accomplished. His work has been salvation, which is restoration. To use an analogy, the fall of man can be compared with an unhealthy person, a patient; we are all in an unhealthy state. Therefore, God sends the Messiah to change our unhealthy state into an original, perfected state; in other words. He cures mankind.

In this work of restoration God cannot do everything at one stroke. He must approach this problem step by step, stage by stage. Therefore, He must begin His work with one individual. Even to begin with one individual, God has to have a preparation period. The history of God’s preparation is shown in the history of the chosen people of Israel. The chosen nation of Israel was the planting ground for the Messiah — it was prepared as fertile land for the coming of the Messiah.

Then what is the Messiah? The Messiah comes as the model of perfection on every level — as an individual, as a tribe and family, and up to the nation and world. The work of restoration is re-creating man into perfection. In order to re-create us God has to follow His original principle of creation. In his original plan for creation, God intended Adam to be perfected first. The Messiah comes in that role, as the perfected Adam. And Adam is the model example that was lost. However, Jesus Christ, the Messiah, was the restored Adam, who was the perfected Adam and the model example for perfection.

In the Garden of Eden, a disaster was created by the fall of man. Who is responsible for this fall of man? Adam is responsible, because he was the one who was in a position to control the whole situation. He was in a position to control Eve. Instead, he was subjugated and controlled by Eve. Then the Messiah is the one who is the perfected Adam. He is coming in the role of perfected Adam. This is the true identity of the Messiah. If the Messiah came 2,000 years ago and the chosen people of Israel united with the Messiah, then there would have been no problem for this perfected Adam to take a heavenly bride. Then there would be no problem to establish the first heavenly family.

From then on, the heavenly tribe, nation, and world would have been no problem. In other words, he would have been the model or pattern for the individual, family and tribal level, and each level of perfection would have been achieved and fulfilled by the coming of the Messiah, Jesus Christ, 2,000 years ago. Then the literal kingdom would have been established upon the face of the earth, so that Israel would have become the first place where the living reality of God’s presence was evident, and they would have united with Christ and become one with him. Then, with the people of Israel united with the Messiah, one ideal nation would have been a reality at that time upon the face of the earth. Through that nation, other nations and groups of nations would have been restored.

If the nation of Israel demonstrated unity with the Messiah 2,000 years ago, then all other nations would have followed the same pattern. If they had followed the pattern of Israel, united with the Messiah as the center, all the heads of state, kings and queens, and all the top leadership of the world, would have united with one Messiah 2,000 years ago. In that case the entire world would have come under God’s heavenly sovereignty of the Messiah 2,000 years ago. The whole world at that time would have been the Garden of Eden, the literal Garden of Eden, in which all men and women would have found true son-ship and true daughter-ship in the sight of God. No sin would prevail, and only the love of God would prevail. And we would be living in heaven since that time. It was for this day that God had worked so hard during 4,000 years to prepare the chosen people of Israel.

We know now that this realization of the literal and ideal kingdom of heaven upon the face of the earth was not achieved 2,000 years ago because of the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. This is something which conventional Christianity never knew. This is something only we know. Many people believe that Jesus came to die on the cross for our sins. What would have happened if the people of Israel had accepted Jesus and united with him? Then no one would crucify him, would they? The environment and circumstances would have been created in which Jesus Christ could take command, in the position of commander-in-chief. Then Jesus Christ would have fulfilled the plan which God gave him-the realization of the ideal family, the ideal tribe, society, ideal nation, and ideal world.

God created the foundation by his 4,000 years work with the people of Israel. Then God sent the Messiah at the appointed hour. But the people rejected him and killed him. That was the shocking reality. Those people who were at the top of the hierarchy of the Jewish faith at that time, those are the ones who would have worked as the close disciples of Jesus Christ. Who became the apostles and disciples of Jesus? Fishermen, ignorant laborers, tax collectors, harlots — those people, lowly people were the only ones who followed Jesus. If the people of Israel as a nation and a people welcomed and accepted the Messiah, this would not have happened.

Why couldn’t they believe him? Today we must know clearly. The people couldn’t accept Jesus Christ as the Messiah because of the Old Testament. It is ironic, but the word of God, recorded in the Old Testament, was the primary obstacle in the ministry of Jesus.

Why was this so? Why was the Old Testament an obstacle? Malachi 4:5-6 contains the prophecy: “I will send you Elijah the prophet before the great and terrible day of the Lord comes. And he will turn the hearts of fathers to their children and the hearts of children to their fathers….” Then who was Elijah? God promised to have Elijah come first. About 900 years prior to Jesus Christ, Elijah came as a prophet; he fought evil; then he ascended into heaven in a chariot of fire. Since the Old Testament predicted the return of Elijah, the people of Israel of Jesus’ time expected that Elijah would come from the sky, because the Bible recorded him as ascending into the sky. Then did Elijah come? No. According to the Jewish faith, no Elijah had appeared.

Then one day, all of a sudden, they heard the great shocking news: the man of Nazareth, this humble figure from Nazareth, began proclaiming, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand”; “I am the son of God.” People were shocked, because they had not yet heard the news that Elijah had come. Many Christians believe that these prophecies will be fulfilled at the time of the Lord of the Second Advent. But this is not so, because Malachi’s prophecy is for the First Coming, Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ himself said in Matthew 11:13, “For all the prophets and the law prophesied until John.”

Then the problem is: did Elijah really not come? Let’s get the answer from the words of Jesus Christ, because he is the truth. Jesus said that Elijah had already come. Then who is Elijah? When you read Matthew 17:10 and beyond, there is a description about a disciple of Jesus coming back to Jesus with the question, “Why do the scribes say that Elijah must come first?” because Jesus’ disciples did not know much about the Old Testament. They were rather ignorant. So when they went out to preach the gospel of Jesus, all the scribes rebuked them by saying, “If your master is the son of God and the Messiah, where is the Elijah? Show me the Elijah.” They were embarrassed because they could not answer this question. So one day they came back to Jesus and asked the question: “Master, what happened? Why do people say that Elijah should come first?”

Then Jesus said, “Elijah is coming; and I must tell you Elijah has already come.” It was really shocking news, even to the disciples. At that time the disciples understood that Jesus was speaking of John the Baptist. It was the first time they knew the answer. All the others — the chief priests, elders, and rabbis, the scribes and Pharisees — they had no sign of the coming of Elijah. But Jesus alone said, “Elijah has already come.” Of course Jesus’ disciples could accept the words of Jesus in full faith because they believed in him as the Lord. However, they simply had no way to convince the people of Israel that John the Baptist was Elijah — no way.

At that time it was virtually impossible for the faithful Jews to accept Jesus Christ as the son of God and believe his words, that John the Baptist was Elijah, because their 4,000 year tradition was too much to give up. But they could not just neglect Jesus Christ, because Jesus Christ was teaching in power and authority. So they could not disregard it. So the Pharisees decided, “Well, then, let’s make a settlement. Let’s settle this question once and for all. Let’s go to John the Baptist; let us ask him.” And they did. In John 1:19-21, the Pharisees asked John the Baptist, “Are you the Christ?” He said, “No, I am not.” “Are you Elijah?” — a very critical question. Then John the Baptist answered, “No, I am not.” “Then are you the prophet?” Then he said, “No.”

At the Jordan River John the Baptist bore witness to Jesus Christ as the son of God. So John the Baptist’s answer denying his being Elijah put Jesus in a position of a liar. So let us examine John the Baptist and what he believed about Jesus. One day John the Baptist sent his disciples to Jesus as messengers, who asked Jesus “Are you he who is to come, or shall we wait for another?” What a shocking question this was. Do you think it was an expression of his faith? What he is really saying is, “Are you he, the Messiah, or shall we wait for somebody else?”

At this Jesus became indignant and swelled up inside him. So Jesus rejected answering him either “yes” or “no.” Jesus said in Matthew 11:6; “Blessed is he who takes no offense at me,” which is to say, “John, you poor John — you are taking offense at me. You don’t know me. You testified from your own mouth who I am. Now you are denying it, you man of failure.” That is what Jesus is actually saying. And then Jesus, speaking to the crowd concerning John, said, “What did you go out into the wilderness to behold? To see a man clothed in soft raiment? Those clothed in soft raiment are in kings’ houses. Why then did you go out? You went out to see a prophet. Yes, I tell you, and more than a prophet.” But they failed to discover that person who was more than a prophet.

Then further down in Matthew 11:11, Jesus said, “Truly, I say to you, among those born of women there has risen no one greater than John the Baptist; yet he who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.” This is a controversial verse. Today, conventional Christianity does not have a clear understanding of this verse, because it misses the whole point. Now through the Divine Principle alone we can interpret why the greatest prophet of all, John the Baptist, is least in the kingdom of heaven. Why?

The mission of the prophets throughout the ages was to bear witness to the Messiah. But most of the prophets in history have had this mission prior to the Messiah. However, John the Baptist alone was to bear witness to the Messiah in person. He had a tremendously privileged position and honor, to bear witness to the living Messiah. So mission-wise, John the Baptist’s mission was the greatest. If John the Baptist bore witness to Jesus Christ as the son of God as he did at the Jordan River and faithfully served the Messiah, then indeed John the Baptist would have become the greatest of all time.

All the prophets in spirit world knew who Jesus was. They knew that Jesus was the son of God — the Messiah. But John the Baptist, even though he was walking together with Jesus, did not know, and he doubted and was suspicious about Jesus’ identity. So he hesitated. Therefore he has become the least of all in the kingdom of heaven. In Matthew 11:12 Jesus said, “From the days of John the Baptist until now,” — Jesus made clear the time limitation — “from… John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven has suffered violence, and men of violence take it by force.” This is the final conclusion of an analysis of John the Baptist from the point of view of Jesus.

John the Baptist was elected to become a chief disciple of the son of God, the Messiah. If John the Baptist had followed and had become the chief disciple of Jesus, then all the 12 apostles would have come from John the Baptist’s own followers, and the 70 disciples would also have come from them. Then what would happen? Then no one in Israel would have rejected Jesus Christ as the son of God, because at that time, John the Baptist’s influence was felt in every corner of Israel. The power of John the Baptist could influence the entire nation. That means Jesus Christ, the nation of Israel, and the Jewish faith — all three could become one. Then what would have happened?

Then Jesus would have created the first heavenly family at that time. And Jesus would have created an ideal people of Israel, a restored people of Israel. Then God, through Jesus, would have created an ideal society, an ideal first nation under God, and one heavenly sovereignty would have been established with the chosen people of Israel. But Jesus was rejected, not accepted. Therefore, he had to start from scratch with no foundation. He went out, picking, one by one, his own disciples. When Jesus was going around to all those areas of Israel preaching the gospel, he and his followers looked like a party of beggars, because they were so poor and miserable. People just pointed fingers at them saying, “They are outcasts. They are the heretics. They are beggars. They are poor people.” Such was the situation.

So, look at it from God’s point of view — how sorrowful, what a grieving thing it is. For 4,000 years, God worked so hard for that one appointed hour, the coming of the Messiah. Then the Messiah was rejected by the chosen people, and none of them received Him. How sorrowful God was! God wanted to have His people accept the Messiah. But God knew now that all His anticipations and all His hope were destroyed by the chosen people.

The people of Israel drifted away from God — further and further toward Satan’s side. They took advantage of the Roman power, trying to put up an even greater force against the son of God, Jesus. Then God, looking down and analyzing the situation, came to the conclusion that as it was Jesus would be unable to turn the tide of the people. So He made another decision. God decided to reduce the mission of Jesus Christ. Jesus came to bring spiritual redemption as well as physical redemption, which is redemption of the body. However, God knew that full realization was impossible. So God asked him to carry out only spiritual redemption. The spirit of Jesus represents the spirit world; the body of Jesus represents the physical world.

And God saw that if the situation worsened the whole mission of Jesus would be in peril. Therefore, God decided to give Jesus’ body as a sacrifice so that spiritual redemption, the way of spiritual salvation, would be possible. So the cross, the way of crucifixion was not planned in the beginning. This was a change in the mission. It was not the original will of God.

In Luke 9:30 there is a description of the Mount of Transfiguration. “Behold, two men talked with him, Moses and Elijah, who appeared in glory and spoke of his departure, which he was to accomplish at Jerusalem.” In other words, this is the occasion in which God sent Moses and Elijah as messengers, informing Jesus of his crucifixion at Jerusalem. Christians today do not know that the crucifixion was decided upon at that particular moment. God instructed Jesus to alter his mission.

Peter’s reaction to this news was to reply, “God forbid. Lord! This shall never happen to you.” Do you know what Jesus said to him? He said, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a hindrance to me; for you are not on the side of God, but of men.” Christianity, and in general all Christians, theologians and ministers, interpret this thusly: “Look, even Peter was scolded by God. Why? Because Peter opposed the crucifixion, which was the will of God.” This is their interpretation. The crucifixion was a predestined course of Jesus. But people do not know that this was after God informed Jesus of his altered mission, which was the crucifixion. This is why Jesus now pursued this altered course and Simon Peter did not know the true heart of God.

In the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus made an agonized prayer, saying, “My soul is very sorrowful, even to death.” Then he said, “My father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me,” — not only one time, but He prayed three times that most anguished prayer. Also, Jesus said about Judas, his betrayer, “Woe to that man who betrayed the Son of man. You would have been far better off if you had not been born.”

Jesus knew that his body represented the physical body of all mankind. Therefore giving up his own body meant giving up the whole of mankind’s body. Jesus knew this grim reality as a fact. And yet Jesus paid that price in order to secure the spiritual redemption of mankind by means of the resurrection after his physical death. We must know that the crucifixion of Jesus on the cross was not the original intended will of God.

We must also realize that through the crucifixion on the cross, God and Jesus lost everything. And God lost the 4,000 year foundation of the Messiah, the foundation of faith of Israel. And God lost at that moment John the Baptist, who came upon the face of the earth to straighten the way of the Lord. And his mission was completely in vain. And God knew because of the crucifixion, that the intended mission through the family of Joseph and Mary was not completed. Finally, God knew at that moment that all the disciples that Jesus worked so hard for three years to gather together would run away. At that moment of crucifixion, nothing was there — nothing — no nation of Israel, no Jewish faith, no disciples, no family, none at all, no Christianity. There was no redemption; there was no salvation; and there was no beginning, no beginning of Christianity. So there on the cross, salvation was not given.

Today, the Unification Church members must know this truth. Today, Christmas is the celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ. We must grimly realize, and rededicate ourselves, knowing first of all, that Jesus did not come to die on the cross. So we must not celebrate a false Christmas in which we believe that Jesus Christ was destined to die on the cross. We must celebrate Christmas as welcoming the birth of the Messiah, the son of God, who came upon the face of the earth to be the realization of God’s ideal.

Today, no church, no nation, no group of people, no group of Christians, celebrate Christmas as the birth of the Messiah, the Lord of glory. Therefore, our group must reflect God’s celebration of the birth of Christ as the Lord of glory, as an individual, church, nation, representing the world. The salvation of mankind, the salvation of the individual soul, does not come from the cross, but comes from the resurrected Jesus. Through the resurrection alone we have the power of salvation. The beginning of Christianity came after the resurrection when Jesus assembled all the broken pieces into one so that Christianity could begin.

Christians all over the world believe in the Holy Father, Holy Son, and Holy Ghost; this was the reality after the resurrection — not before. After the resurrection, the Holy Spirit descended at Pentecost. The Son was then in the position of spiritual father; and the Holy Ghost, which has no physical form, has the role of mother spirit. We must know today very clearly, that Jesus Christ, the son of God, the Messiah, did not come to die on the cross. That was not the way to save the world.

Today, it is very shocking when we understand that the people of Israel couldn’t believe Jesus. But it is also shocking and really unbelievable that John the Baptist, God’s elected prophet, who was sent specifically to straighten the way of the Lord, denied Him. If John the Baptist had not only accepted and witnessed to Jesus Christ as the son of God, but had followed him, becoming his disciple, then their destinies would have coincided. Jesus and John the Baptist would rise together and fall together — their destiny should have been one, not two. History demonstrates the failure of the mission of John the Baptist.

I would like to add one more thing. There is another reason why Jesus could not be believed, which was that the people expected the arrival of Jesus on the clouds of heaven. When you read Daniel 7:13, it reads, “I saw in the night visions, and behold, with the clouds of heaven… the son of man.” In other words, Daniel is saying that the coming of Jesus, the son of God, must be on the clouds of heaven. The people expected his arrival on the clouds of heaven; so when Jesus appeared in the flesh it was very difficult to accept him. So at that time, there were arguments among Jesus’ disciples and the faithful of Israel. “Well, if your master, Jesus, is the son of God, how could he appear as a man, in the flesh — impossible! How could he be the son of God? We know him; he is the son of Joseph, the son of Mary. How could he be a son of God? He must come on the clouds of heaven.”

Two thousand years ago, the situation was such that the people expected Elijah first; Elijah did not come. They expected Elijah to come from the blue sky; he did not appear in that manner. Again they expected the son of God on the clouds of heaven; this also was not fulfilled. So how could they accept Jesus? On what grounds? Those who believed the letter of the Old Testament not the spirit could miss the whole thing. What they are saying is, “He is a heretic.” The Jewish faith never recognized Christianity. Today, we must know the truth, and the truth will make us free.

Then how will the Lord reappear in the last days? We are in a situation exactly parallel to that of the time of Jesus Christ. If we become slaves to the word of the New Testament, instead of the spirit of the New Testament, we would be committing the same crime which the elders, scribes, and Pharisees committed 2,000 years ago. Two thousand years ago, God promised Elijah; but God didn’t send him in a miraculous way. He sent him as John the Baptist. Two thousand years ago, God promised the Messiah; but the Messiah did not come on the clouds of heaven. Today, Christians are expecting the arrival of the Lord of the Second Advent on the clouds of heaven. If we are slaves to the letter of the New Testament, we will be in a position to commit the same crime as the Israelites.

When you read Chapters 9, 12, and 16 of Isaiah, they contain prophecies of the glorious Jesus, or the Lord of Glory. Chapter 53 of Isaiah is the prophecy of the suffering Christ. Today there are two prophecies concerning the coming of the Lord of the Second Advent. One is his arrival on clouds of heaven. The second is his arrival as a thief at night. Part of Christianity is saying: “It is convenient for me to accept this prophecy,” so they are looking up to heaven. What would they do if the Lord appears suddenly, as a thief at night? Then they would reject him and cause him suffering. Because of their ignorance and crime, the chosen people of Israel have had no nation for 2,000 years of history. A tremendous sacrifice has been paid throughout history. Today’s Christianity is in the exact position as the Jewish faith of 2,000 years ago. If we do not recognize the arrival of the Lord of the Second Advent, our destiny will be the same.

God intended to realize His ideal at that point. However, it was not realized. God has been working throughout history, and leading up to another extraordinary moment of history. By this time the extent of the dispensation has increased. However, the method and principle are the same.

Then what is the mission of the Unification Church? We of the Unification Church are preparing the landing pad of the Lord of the Second Advent. The Lord of the Second Advent is coming to bring the fulfillment of perfection — the perfection of the ideal individual, ideal family, ideal tribe, clan and nation and world. We are his base. The entire world of Christianity is in rapid decline. Their spirit is dead; the church is dead. The time of the Lord of the Second Advent is imminent. Therefore, God is asking one new group to prepare the base. Today we must know that once one recognizes the truth, one must demonstrate absolute loyalty. There is no personal will, because the will of God and the will of the Lord is our will. If he wants us to go in any direction, we go.

The Lord of the Second Advent is coming as a model of perfection of the individual to the world. Therefore, all we have to do is copy his pattern. Then perfection is yours, and your family’s perfection, your nation’s perfection, and your world’s perfection. We must realize that we are living in an important and critical time, and we must be thankful. After 6,000 years of biblical history, God is finally accomplishing perfection of one man. And if Christianity accepts this one perfection as central, then the whole world can be instantly restored. If Christianity takes a position of opposition to this one model of perfection, then the one perfected model has to organize his own foundation on the individual, family, and tribal levels.

Today, the Unification Church is on that road, because Christianity took a position of opposition, instead of welcome. Therefore we are now creating that base as a foundation. We must realize that at the time of Jesus the disciples should have marched toward Rome, because Rome was the hub of the world. By winning Rome, they could win the world. By the same token, today the Unification Church movement — even though the Christian church is opposed — is now moving toward the Rome of today. America is the Rome of our world, in the position of Abel [relative good]. Soviet Russia, is in the position of God-denying Rome in the role of Cain [relative evil]. We accept God’s ideology and freedom. Those activities of God’s people, such as the news media, free speech, and all free organizations, are all protected by law.

Today no one has to shed blood. Without shedding blood, you can accomplish your mission, because we are standing on the foundation of 2,000-year-old Christianity; many Christians paid a price in order to erect that foundation. Once we create a true worldwide base here in America, the Abel-like Rome, then our final showdown will be made with the Rome of Cain, that is the center of the Communist world.

In the three year period 1972-74, we are now mobilizing our entire force and energy, our heart and soul in order to create a beachhead for the Lord. This is the hill of Calvary for all of us. It is not easy — the tribulation is hard, the test is great, and many people will definitely fall. The prayer of Gethsemane will be our prayer. However, we should not pray, “God, please let this cup pass from me.” Rather we will say, “God, use me as your sacrifice; do your will.” Then we have a base; we don’t have to pray the same prayer Jesus prayed, because Jesus was to die on the cross. But we are in a position to win. Your ambition, your will, and your dedication are your only limits.

Jesus did not have any possibility of avoiding the cross, but we do. We have already avoided it. You don’t have to go that path. All we can do is win the victory. Your future is nothing but glory and victory. And if you are completely loyal to the coming Lord of the Second Advent he will bring you, your family, your tribe and your nation into perfection. We must know that we are going through the most critical moment. Even though you are one individual, you represent the entire world; and you are fighting for universal salvation. Your work and dedication is not just for yourself, but is for the entire universe. There is one time in human history when one can be in a position to save one nation, the whole world, and the universe, hence the prediction in the Bible that the coming Christ will rule the world during the millennium.

After 6,000 years of intense searching, God found one true man upon the face of the earth. However, by following him and being obedient to him, you can restore not only yourself but also your family, your tribe, your nation, and the world. This is a most glorious moment in human history. In this age, we must not be self-centered. We must be totally unselfish. If you have such determination and faith, you can not only go beyond the Garden of Gethsemane, you can go beyond the Mount of Calvary and beyond the cross-you shall be victorious.

We are truly living in an extraordinary time in human history. We are in a position to save and liberate Jesus Christ and end his anguish. We can be in a position to liberate even God. We are the ones who can assure God His happiness, His joy, and His peace. We are going to liberate the heart of God and His anguish and sorrow. And by doing so, we are liberating all mankind and its burden and sorrow. Finally we can push the entire satanic realm out of the world. This is normal, because we are bearing our cross as living beings. In our situation complaining could be possible. But we must go beyond that. We must affect a miracle, such that without dying, we can accomplish this goal — this is the miracle. If you have this faith, this commitment, then when you go, God is with you. His power is yours. God is with me when I have this intent, this faith, and this love. God was with me each step of my way. The same God shall be with you.

God has been working with Jesus at each step with such absolute intensity. Today, the same God who has been following Jesus is following you; and the same intensity can be with you. We all are standing at the top of the pinnacle. We must bravely march forward. Then all obstacles will be shattered. All evil elements will no longer have power. We need one nation as a base. As soon as we have one nation as the base for the heavenly dispensation, the world will be easier to win. If America becomes that first nation in the dispensation, the rest of the world will be instantly restored. Are all of you American citizens? For those of you who are not legally American citizens it makes no difference; you are here as American people to save this nation. And you are even to do more than American citizens, because you came as champions from other lands.

So today is December 25,1973. There are many million people celebrating Christmas. But no other people, no organization is celebrating Christmas in our spirit. We know for what purpose Jesus was born, for what purpose he worked, and what was the real meaning of the crucifixion. All these things are now no longer dark for us — we are in the light. Now the whole world is singing Christmas carols and having tremendous parties and banquets. But here your celebration under this humble roof in this small room — is where God and the hope of Jesus is dwelling.

Do you know that point is this place? And the hope of God is centered upon this particular occasion. This is the occasion that all the saints, apostles, righteous people, those martyred people are anxiously looking forward to. So you are in an envious position. You must feel closeness with Jesus Christ — skin to skin, face to face, heart to heart. If Jesus Christ in person was here, he would be more than happy, more than joyous to embrace you, each one of you. Jesus is in the position of our elder brother. We are the only people who truly understand the heart of Jesus, the anguish of Jesus, and the hope of Jesus. So if we celebrate Christmas in the truest sense, then the whole heavenly salvation is with us.

Our three years, 1972, 1973, and 1974 — this three-year ministry is equivalent to Jesus’ three year public ministry 2,000 years ago. As you know, we are in the middle of the Day of Hope tour in 21 American cities. We have completed two-thirds of it. This represents 200 years of American history and also it is equivalent to the three seven-year courses of our Unification Church members, which make 21. We are now creating a firm foundation, so that we can successfully conclude the second seven-year course. Then we can launch a most victorious and dramatic third seven-year course.

And I know that in America, Mr. Moon will be known all over. In less than two years, actually in just one full year, we have done so much. There are many things going on behind the scenes which will be made public much later in history; we cannot do it now. But I want you to know that God is working in all directions. And we have erected foundations in Korea, Japan, and Free China (Taiwan). On those foundations, for which our members truly shed sweat and blood we can now launch this worldwide movement here in America. Now we come to the moment, when even in one day, we can truly change the course of history in America and the world. Under adverse conditions, we erected those foundations for the worldwide movement.

All the Little Angels, little girls, tiny faces are here. They do not know the true meaning of this day. However, these girls are blessed, and they are going to be blessed, and grow up in blessing, and they shall be great women, leaders of the world.

We will have a performance at the United Nations General Assembly Hall, which is unprecedented in history. The Little Angels are going to be the stars on that stage; and for this occasion, the whole of North Korea, along with the entire Communist world is really embarrassed and shocked. However, that whole formidable Communist world is being threatened by these little girls. You know, actually, a weapon is meaningless; no matter how good a weapon is, how good a machine gun is, how good a gun is — it is meaningless. It is only as good as the marksman; the person behind it is the problem, because that rifleman is the person who can put a bullet through the bull’s-eye. These little girls are like bullets of love. The important thing is with what spirit we are firing them. Our purpose is different, and the universal goal is there. So on a pure, genuine, and universal scale, this program has been launched — this is what is important.

In the future, I may create our own people who will create all artistic forms; they can master it in the spirit of the Divine Principle. And they can do it in a matter of a few years. The leadership of the Little Angels, whether they realize it or not, are connected with this program. Whether this is happiness or unhappiness is up to them. They can make it either absolute happiness, or they can make it absolute unhappiness. However, once this is accomplished, I hope they realize the significance of this occasion, so that they can make this occasion one of great happiness.

After the 21-city Day of Hope tour is over, I will come back to Belvedere. I will work behind you. So be ready for that day. You won’t have day, you won’t have night. All 24 hours, just working for one purpose. Look forward with great anticipation — I want you to have great anticipation. In the year 1974 formidable and great and extraordinary things will happen. And on this extraordinary occasion I don’t want you to be just observers. I want you to be actors. Which would you prefer? Would you want to be just a bystander, or an actor? [ACTOR!]

I want you to be different from the apostles of Jesus. From God’s standpoint, one saw despondent disciples of Jesus, disillusioned and weak. God is looking at you young people, with shining eyes, charged with determination — and He sees an entirely different group, because we are involved in a different mission, and we are in a different age. God looks at Jesus’ army 2,000 years ago — despondent, retreating, sacrificing, shedding blood, etc. But today God is looking at you — at the glowing army, glorious, shining, filled with commitment, winning one victory after another. I want you to be such leaders and champions. Would you like to be that? [YES!]

I have been speaking to you today on the Christmas day, 1973, on the topic “Christmas In Heart.” Think about it — for 2,000 years Christmas has been celebrated in one way, but now you are celebrating Christmas in a unique way. This is the time we are inheriting the mission of Jesus Christ himself. He is now handing over the credentials to you, so that he is asking you to bravely charge forward into the world and fulfill the mission that Jesus Christ left undone 2,000 years ago. In every respect we are ready. Because we know we have truth. You know more than anybody else in this world about Jesus — his life, his anguish, his hope, and his death, and the mission He left undone. So we now inherit the victorious stand upon which we can bring perfection.

First of all, we must be thankful and grateful that God summoned us, this feeble body, this feeble spirit, and made us champions in spite of this feeble spirit and body, to use in this unprecedented history. It is wonderful; we must be thankful this day. And secondly, we must give our pledge to God that we shall fulfill the expected mission. This is a most wonderful, formidable occasion, on which we celebrate Christmas 1973. We celebrate this Christmas in heart.