The Future of the Religious Person

The Future of the Religious Person

Sun Myung Moon
September 1, 1986
Excerpts
Belvedere

Translated from Japanese by Col. Sang Kil Han. Father also spoke part of the speech in English.

The ordinary person has only a vague idea of where he is going in his life. But religious people do have some idea that they will eventually return to God. They vaguely know that since God exists, surely Satan must also exist; and they have an idea that those who believe in God come under the control and influence of God and those who don’t come under the control of Satan.

At the time of the fall it wasn’t a great number of people who erred, but only the first ancestors — just two people. But because of their mistake, all their descendants have had to go the inevitable course of sin. Since the fall, men and women have never had a clear idea where they were going. However, they have been constantly searching for a better, truer direction while remaining under satanic dominion.

The ultimate wish of mankind has been to get out of the satanic dominion. While people have been struggling desperately, constantly searching for the way to return to God, the number of human beings has increased. Meanwhile, Satan has been trying his best to keep all the multitudes on his side, trying to prevent every person he can from returning to God’s side.

Fragmentation of Language
According to the language people speak, the foundation of each culture has been created. Different cultures speak different languages and dialects, and all have been divided. Because of the language barriers, communication has become very difficult and grave misunderstandings have occurred.

How did the different languages originate? Perhaps it started like this: The elder brother pointed to something to eat and said, “Gohan.” Then the younger brother pointed to the same thing and said “Food.” The two words mean the same thing in different languages but they can never really be the same. Maybe this elder brother wore a certain kind of jacket and the younger brother rebelled and cut off the sleeves of his own jacket so that it would have a different shape. Perhaps the elder brother followed his parents in the right way, but his younger brother went off on his own, in order to disagree and show his antagonism. Living in different circumstances and environments, the two brothers developed two increasingly different ways of life, and their languages changed even more.

However, God’s goal is to unite; His desire has always been for unity, harmony, and peace. Therefore, God would certainly not have wanted to see people speaking different languages and becoming divided.

We can visualize the original family — father Adam, mother Eve, elder brother Cain, and younger brother Abel. Eve n within one family, these four became enemies of one another. The disharmony and disagreement among these four people represented the extreme cultural differences among all historical civilizations to come. Today people realize they are living in a divided, disharmonious world, even though they do not realize how the divisions came about.

The primary division — between the side advocating the belief in God and the other side advocating materialism and atheism — is the fruit of the original division between mind and body that came about at the fall. Because of this division, we can clearly see that we are in the final days of history, the time when the fruit of what was sowed is about to appear.

Two hundred years ago, America was founded on the basis of God. But as the years went by, this country became secular rather than religious. We can hardly call the American way a way of life based on God anymore; today it is based on money. Also, families started breaking up, and now all meaningful unity in society has been broken. Everybody knows that the American government or American military power cannot solve these problems; neither can economics or technology. None of these forces can liberate this country. In all areas, confusion has become so bad that America is on the verge of collapse.

Chased Around By Satan
This great country has been constantly chased around by Satan. America started out within the stream of God, and was meant to remain within it; but today we find that America has become so vulnerable that it is under the constant threat of communism. Americans are living like people without minds; only the body is important.

American society is powerless because of this division. Where once there may have been potential, now America has no way out. Who can eliminate the satanic elements? As in all ages, God has the solution, but He cannot do anything by Himself because the problem is the result of man’s fall. Human beings fell, so they must restore themselves. God has been waiting for many, many years to see man take the proper steps to restore himself.

The only way for this world to get out of Satan’s dominion is for God to find a group of people who will stand on His side, understand His directions, and work with Him.

The whole universe is governed by universal law, and man’s life should be governed by the Principle too. But man is living in the hell which he himself created at the fall. It is hell because it is not a world that God can dominate. The only hope is for God to find some condition, however small, by which He can elevate man out of hell into a better place.

The first thing we must do in tackling this problem is to realize how man came to be in hell.

There are two types of people in prisons. Some are conscientious, remorseful, and reflective, wondering, “Why am I here? Why did I listen to so-and-so and take that first step in the wrong direction which eventually led me here?” The other kind of person is the remorseless one. He thinks, “If only I hadn’t slipped up, it would have been the perfect crime. When I get out, I’ll try again, and next time I’ll make sure I don’t get caught.”

We find ourselves in the same situation. In the fallen world today we live in a kind of extended jail. Some people ponder their life: “How did I get to this point? Did I do something bad?” And they keep trying to make up for their shortcomings. Other people never stop to reflect but just keep going day after day, involving themselves in more and more sin, committing more and more crimes.

Restoring Ancestral Crimes
It never occurs to most people, unless they are very religious, that they or their ancestors have committed crimes. They just pursue the path of pleasure. However, the members of the Unification Church are constantly aware of the reason why mankind is living in this hell on earth. We know that the first cause of sin is the fall of the first human beings, and we are aware that each of us is the descendant of fallen ancestors. So we repent and want to keep pulling ourselves away from sin. Even if we ourselves don’t commit crimes, we want to make up for our bad ancestry. We are probably the only group in the whole wide world that thinks this way.

Everyone on earth is bearing all sorts of ancestral crime and sin, without knowing it. Here is an example: The American settlers of three or four hundred years ago killed so many American Indians that they nearly annihilated them. Now this country is very prosperous, at least materially. Who should be responsible for all those killings? Clearly, it is those who are living today in the land of America — every one of you — who should bear the responsibility.

Modern Americans may say, “Well, maybe those people in the past did that, but I am not responsible.” God doesn’t agree. All things inevitably work according to cause and effect relationships.

Here is another example. American youth are becoming victims of the most miserable and evil plague of drugs. Why, of all the advanced countries, must America suffer so much from this problem? In the past, Anglo-Saxon people deliberately dumped opium into China in order to immobilize the Chinese and take over the country. Because of that Americans now, without knowing it, are suffering the punishment for their ancestors’ crime.

The only way to get back to the original state we were in before committing some crime or making some mistake is to pay back or indemnify what we did wrong. We cannot erase the past, but we can restore it or pay back the debt, and the sooner we do it the better. For instance, the way for America to be forgiven for what the Anglo-Saxons did to the Chinese and other Orientals, including the American Indians, is to have the Asians and American Indians embrace them in forgiveness. The criminal cannot declare, “I must be forgiven.” It doesn’t work that way. The victim has to come and say, “I forgive you:’

We can now understand why I have come from the Orient and worked so hard here in America. I had to find a valid way to plead before God, “Because of what I have done here, please forgive this country” America cannot simply say, “Oh God, please forgive us:’ America has to build up a valid indemnity, and I have been trying desperately to discover the means through which this country can come to deserve forgiveness. The task is enormous, and every detail has to be worked out faithfully.

The Hope and the Dream
The English word “benefactor” is hardly given a second thought nowadays. But, like the word “savior,” it means the person in whom we can have hope, the one through whom we can come to t h e light. For America, that benefactor is Rev. Moon, who came to this country and worked so hard to rescue this country from the consequences of its historical wrongdoings.

The guilty ones themselves are not even thinking about it. In all American history and for the future, Rev. Moon is the hope and dream. But the American people did not know it and they threw me into jail. Maybe they did wrong without knowing, but if you break a law without realizing it, does it dismiss you from being punished? When I came out of Danbury, I did the same work, but with even more fervor and greater effort. I called you and talked to you, making you work hard, making you pay indemnity that nobody likes, including me. Why? For your own sake, as individuals, I must help the Unification Church members realize what it is all about — what we have done wrong, how we can pay back the debt, and how we can arrive back at the original place so that we can work for America and the world, because we are on the forefront. It bothers white people that this Oriental man has come here and said things they never even thought about, things they don’t want to hear. But I have spoken clearly.

Isn’t it true? We have come to the point where the only way for America to be saved is for the American people to understand their responsibility and bravely bear it, no matter how heavy, pledging, “We will pay back our own debt, and we will also pay back the debts of the world. Therefore, God, please forgive us.” The only way for America to be forgiven is for the Americans to take up the burdens of the world, including the burdens of the many countries that have become prisoners of communism. She must liberate the people under the oppression of communism because America did not fulfill her responsibility to bring the world back to God’s side in the first place.

But American people do not understand this. There is so much corruption and moral degradation in the country, so many unsolved racial problems. How can America liberate the communist world? America absolutely cannot do it alone. From where can Americans receive the power to do it? Only from God. Can they receive it from you? From Dr. Durst? From President Reagan? From the CIA, or the president of Harvard? What about great religious leaders, such as Billy Graham? They don’t know everything. Nobody understands God’s will. Only God knows.

So the American people must return to God. It is like Jesus’ time, when John the Baptist stood out in the desert and shouted, “Repent, and return to God!” Otherwise America has no hope. Someone is standing out in the wilderness now, just as in the time of the Israelites, proclaiming loudly “Repent!” That person is Rev. Moon. I am telling you Moonies first of all, “Repent!” You have to repent!

I Must Complete This Task
In Jesus’ time, the Israelites did not understand their own situation. From God’s viewpoint, they were in the gravest danger, but they did not know it. Only Jesus Christ knew. So, knowing God’s will, he took up his cross.

It is the same today, and I am determined to take up the burden for the sake of God’s will. Why don’t I take revenge on this country, which has treated me as its enemy? Why do I bother with America? For the sake of the world, for the world’s people, because this country represents the world.

The situation now is more serious than ever. While the American people say, “Why don’t you go home?” I am continuing to tell people to fulfill their responsibility. I cannot go back to Korea yet; I must stay here and complete this task.

You Moonies know very clearly how you can resolve the American situation. If you take up the task and fulfill it, you will be helping my purpose. Other Christian churches are now uniting with the Unification Church, aren’t they? American churches are coming to understand that they must go the way of survival. American leaders are coming to realize that they have to learn the CAUSA worldview in order to protect America from total moral degradation. Your job is to offer this new direction to Americans.

I am urging you Japanese members to realize that this is America, and American members must take the primary responsibility. You had to come because they were not able to fulfill it, but it is not primarily your responsibility. Nevertheless, you must help.

This is a grave task which we must accomplish by 1988. It is a truly historical undertaking. During these three years, you must do even more than I did in the years 1945 to 1948. That was 40 years ago, and we have returned to the same moment in providential time-identity. Since God saw the crucial nature of this time, He let me go to Danbury. Meanwhile He worked to turn the giant land of China around from the enemy side toward the godly side. You know I made many significant decisions while I was in Danbury, because I have spoken of them, but there were other important decisions I made that I have never spoken about.

Now, and during these three years, we must do exactly the same thing that John the Baptist did, standing alone in the desert and bellowing out, “Repent! The Kingdom of God is at hand!” I have been doing this for the past 14 years. You Japanese members, as well as you American members, must now yell the same message on the front line in America, just as John did in Israel.

Time for Serious Effort
Fortunately by now, many conscientious people in America have heard the things I have been proclaiming, and their response is better than ever. If we now make an all-out effort to reach them and teach them, pleading with them, warning them of the imminent dangers, there will be new hope.

Now I have instructed you clearly. If you still don’t do this, and if because of that I have to leave this country, you will be helpless. You will be like the miserable prisoner who has to sit in his cell and remorsefully reflect upon his past. Furthermore, when at last the rest of the people realize what was going on during 1986 and 1987, and if you didn’t fulfill your responsibility, they will hold you responsible. In the spirit world, you will not be able to come to me as you do now at Belvedere. It is that serious.

We should never forget that this is exactly the same time as 2,000 years ago, as Jesus faced his three-year mission. We are chosen. The president of a country, for example, is chosen. If he performs well, many will benefit and he will be praised. But if he fails, the consequences for the entire nation come down upon him. We members of the Unification Church are also chosen. We know that. Whether or not we are qualified, whether or not we are worthy, still we are chosen. We must take pride in that; but if we don’t fulfill our responsibility then we must be ready to suffer the consequences. We cannot just get away with it.

I alone know the responsibility of the religious person. All religious people must go a certain narrow path to widen it; they must at least minimally clear the way for those who will come after them. I worked very hard in Korea from December to May to prepare Korea to receive all the Christian activity of the world. Now Korea can play the central role. For this reason, I went out of my way to love the Korean people, even though many still opposed and mistreated me. I opened the way for the sake of all religious people on earth. It took me six serious months, but it was achieved. I did it to ease the burden of responsibility of all religious people, including the members of the Unification Church.

However, what if we fail to save this country of America? We must have a back-up plan, a plan that is as good as the original. So even though America may not fulfill its responsibility toward the world, then Korea, working together with the help of China and Japan, can build God’s providential world foundation. I have already formulated the alternate plan.

An Alternate Plan
If America collapses, I will create a South American providence. If the Protestant world doesn’t fulfill God’s plan, the plan will be shifted to the Catholic countries, which means Latin America. So we will have a South American foundation and an Asian foundation, combined.

For the first time, an Oriental man came to the Western world and for 14 years tried to build a historical foundation in America. Was it easy? No, it was extremely difficult. Latin America comprises 31 countries, which so far have been unable to unite at all; how much more difficult it will be to unite them!

When I first came to America, I visited all 50 states within 43 days. No American would do that. Only this foreigner, one Oriental man — Rev. Moon — would do that. Why did I do it? It was for the sake of God’s will. God wanted to unite this country, this entire continent. Communism infiltrated this country and created separations. The communists believe that they can divide America into an Anglo-Saxon part and a Hispanic part. It is not a mere threat. If America fails, she will be in a really miserable situation. North America will have to follow South America. American people are not capable of saving their own country; they don’t know what is at stake. Only the Unification Church members know it, don’t you? This is the true way. And going the true way means bringing the results — God’s united world.

You American Moonies have to stand in the position of savior to this nation. I myself am not free; I cannot escape my destiny. You are in the same situation. You are soldiers who have to persevere, for the country and for the world. Can you do it? If not, God can have no hope in American Moonies.

You have a duty to America, and you also have a duty to the world and cosmos. You have to swallow and digest this destiny. Your determination must be strong. What did God tell the Israelites when they were about to enter Canaan? Be bold and strong! You Americans are God’s Israelites, and your job is to get into Canaan. You may be thinking, “How miserable! This is an impossible mission.” But I give you the same words: Be bold and strong! No matter how enticing the things of this world may be — gold nuggets, beautiful women, handsome guys — spit them out. It’s better to choose the ugliest spouse. Beautiful women are Satan’s bait. The bait looks good, smells good, and tastes good, but when you swallow the bait, the game is over. Do you understand? Our situation is exactly the same as that of the Israelites.

God’s hope is in you, not in American young people or American families or the rest of society. You can make this situation good again. You are sacrificing yourselves on God’s altar. We have to start a new reformation, a re — revolution. If we can do that, America will survive. Otherwise it will not. I know it clearly. I don’t accept critics, but I will accept peacemakers.

These Are Fighting Months
This is the first of September. There are four months left in 1986. These are fighting months. We don’t have whips as in Satan’s world; God’s weapon is words and actions. We must say, “I will do it:’

I only speak after I have brought a result. You, too, should first do something, and then talk about it. I have built the foundation for you; now it’s your turn. There can be no excuses.

So in these next four months you members, both Japanese and American, must take a bold and courageous stand. Fulfill your mission. We must never forget that the destiny of the religious person is to do his mission. We are at the forefront of all religious persons; we must do our job or die. There is no third alternative. In America we can see what happens when people fail to fulfill their religious responsibility.

No matter how difficult it is, we have to take up our task. We cannot run away from God. We cannot escape our fate as the religious man or woman. One religious man, Rev. Moon, is calling out, representing God. I received this mission; now you have to undertake yours. You have to accomplish something before you can stand in front of God. Otherwise, God will say, “I don’t know you. I don’t need you. I need people who accomplish their mission.” You should be eager to accept my invitation. If you fail, God will ask you, “Why didn’t you do it?” Will you be able to say, “I didn’t have the strength” or “I didn’t know better”? No, you’ll have no excuse. If you aren’t able to accomplish the mission, why is it given to you in the first place? You are attending this place, this holy place; therefore, you have to know clearly about fulfilling God’s mission. It is not important to fulfill your own purposes, but only to fulfill God’s.

No matter how much difficulty I faced in America, I held fast to this purpose. For 40 years, I always put God’s mission first.

Whenever I meet a Unification Church member, I ask him his name and his mission. That is all I want to know. You can’t come up to me and call me “Father” unless you can show me that you have fulfilled your mission. I will only say what God will say: “Go out and do your job before you come in front of me. After you’ve done it, then you can come back.” This is the providential way. These are not my words, but God’s words. I am educating you to the providential standard.

You are the soldiers to save America. Do you follow me? You have to undertake this mission and fulfill it. Otherwise America cannot survive. Now you understand clearly, don’t you — you smart Americans who can understand anything? [Father teases one member; laughter.]

Let us pray.