The Proclamation of the Complete Testament Age — View of the Principle of the Providential History of Salvation
Sun Myung Moon
April 16, 1996
Inaugural banquet of the Washington Times Foundation
President, Federation for World Peace
Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen,
Today, I sincerely thank God that you and I can meet as we face this era of great historical change. God is the absolute One, the only, unchanging and eternal One. His will is the same. If the human beings Adam and Eve had become one body under the love of God, everything would have been complete and perfect. God’s origin, purpose and process of creation, as well as cause, effect and direction are all absolute.
The human ancestors Adam and Eve entered into chaos after they fell through their ignorance. This ignorance and chaos expanded from the individual level to the levels of family, nation and world. It has been the task of religion and the Providence of Salvation to liberate us from this sphere of the Fall.
In the Last Days, the Messiah comes and teaches clearly the absolute, the only, unchanging and eternal cause, direction and effect, from God’s viewpoint. He will cleanse the world of ignorance and chaos and return it to the original bosom of God. This is the completion of the will of God. If this does not happen, then in the Last Days all religions, “isms,” systems of thought, and nations will pass away
To bring about completion and perfection between God and humankind, centering on True Love, God required that man accomplish a condition of responsibility in order to reach unity with Him. Therefore, God needed to give the Commandment to the first ancestors. In other words, God knew that they were in the growth period, on the way to reaching perfection, so He established the Commandment as the condition for His children to inherit the most precious thing, True Love.
Originally True Love was to be gained through life experience and understood through internal realization. True Love is not something that can be learned through words, a written text or schooling. It is experienced completely only in life. Created as newborn infants, Adam and Eve were to grow and perfect themselves gradually through experiences of the heart of True Children, True Brother and Sister, True Husband and Wife, and True Parents encompassing their whole lives. Only after experiencing the True Love of God in its entirety can one perfect the Purpose of Creation and become an ideal human being.
Every person desires that his object of love be ten million times more valuable than himself, or even infinitely more valuable. In the same way God desires that humankind, His object of love, become infinitely valuable. If a human being perfects himself then that person obtains God-like value by attaining God’s divinity and perfection.
God’s Ideal of True Love
God is absolute, but His ideal of True Love cannot be realized by himself. That is because love always requires an object — a beloved. At this point, we should understand the relationship between God’s True Love and humankind’s True Love, and how they begin and are perfected. What would have happened if God had not chosen human beings as His absolute objects of True Love, and instead had sought to begin and perfect True Love in some other way? In that case, God and man would have pursued the ideal of True Love with different motivations, directions and purposes. God would have had to achieve His ideal of love through an object higher than humankind; and by the same token, humankind’s ideal of love would have had no direct relationship with God.
But God, as the subject of True Love, did establish humankind as the object of His True Love. Accordingly, God can fulfill His ideal of True Love only through humankind. The fulfillment of God’s Purpose of Creation is the ideal world where God and mankind are united through absolute love. Human beings were created as the greatest object of God’s love. They alone in all Creation embody the nature of God. They are born the visible bodies of the invisible God. If a person perfects himself, he becomes the temple of God, a visible, substantial body in which God can freely and peacefully dwell. God’s overall ideal of absolute True Love is realized and perfected through humankind in a vertical parent-child relationship.
God created Adam first. He was to be the son of God and at the same time the substantial body of God Himself. Later, God created Eve as the object of Adam so that Adam and Eve could perfect the ideal of horizontal love, which is conjugal love. Eve was to be the daughter of God, and also, as a bride she was to perfect substantially the ideal of the horizontal love of God.
The place in which Adam and Eve are perfected, consummating their first love by marrying under the blessing of God, is precisely the place where God meets His substantial bride. This is because God’s ideal of absolute love descends vertically and joins where the ideal of conjugal love between Adam and Eve is realized horizontally. The True Love of God and the True Love of humankind join and perfect themselves at the same point, although they came from different directions, one vertical and the other horizontal.
Why God Needs Humankind
God’s act of creation was inevitable. And we cannot imagine Creation without a purpose. There was only one reason God needed the Creation: to realize the ideal of True Love. God developed life from the simplest and lowest levels up to the human level in pairs, subject and object and positive and negative, to form reciprocal relationships under the ideal of love. The Creation’s ideal of love and God’s ideal of ultimate love are not separate or different. This Principle of Creation is at work to perfect the absolute love of God through the perfection of the love of man and woman in the human world. This is the reason why in the beginning God created one man and one woman, Adam and Eve.
God’s Purpose of Creation called for Adam and Eve to obey the Commandment of God, who is the subject of True Love, and perfect themselves as True Man and True Woman. Furthermore, they were to become a True Couple united in the True Love of God. Then, by having sons and daughters through that True Love, they would have become True Parents and lived in happiness. Had Adam and Eve perfected themselves in True Love, they would have fulfilled God’s desire to have a substantial body. And when they perfected themselves as a True Couple, the ideal of God’s absolute love would have been fulfilled.
By Adam and Eve having children of goodness and becoming True Parents, God would have established Himself substantially as the Eternal Parent and achieved His ideal. Citizenship in the Kingdom of Heaven would expand infinitely in the afterlife of the spirit world based on myriad generations of descendants in the physical world.
But Adam and Eve, the human ancestors, fell away from God. When they were expelled from Eden, they had not yet had children. Having driven them out, God had no basis to follow behind them to bless their marriage. The entire human race has thus descended from our failed ancestors. Humanity has multiplied without any direct relationship whatsoever to the love of God.
Could the Fall of Man have been the result of eating the fruit of a tree? The fall of Adam and Eve was an immoral sin against the ideal of the True Love of God. The fact that Adam and Eve needed to obey the Commandment shows that they fell in a stage of imperfection, that is to say, during their period of growth. The Archangel, who is symbolized by a serpent, tempted Eve to eat of the fruit of good and evil, and she fell spiritually. She later tempted Adam (who was also too immature to eat of the fruit), and they then fell physically.
The only possible sin that could have been fatal in the Garden of Eden, where Adam and Eve were in communication with God and living in joy, was the sin of illicit love. The first consummated love of the human ancestors, because it was supposed to have been the perfection of the love of God Himself, should have marked the beginning of a celebration that would continue throughout history, filled with the never-ending intoxication of joy and blessing for God, Adam and Eve, and the universe. It should have been a joyous occasion in which the love, life and lineage of God would have been established within humankind. To the contrary, however, Adam and Eve covered their lower parts and hid themselves among the trees, trembling in fear. By disobeying heavenly law, they established an immoral relationship as the basis for false love, false life and false lineage. As descendants of Adam and Eve, all human beings are born with Original Sin. The Fall gave rise to conflict of mind and body within every person and caused our societies to be filled with tainted love, and people to do things that contradict the desire of their original minds.
Taking Responsibility for Love
According to the ideal of love, all love relationships in the animal and plant kingdoms are for reproduction only Human beings are the sole exception. Humankind enjoys freedom in the conjugal relationship of love. This is humanity’s special privilege as the lord of all creation. God gave the blessing and infinite joy of love to His sons and daughters. However, the True Freedom that God allowed requires human responsibility If an individual were to insist upon and practice freedom of love without responsibility, how much confusion and destruction would take place! Achieving the highest ideal of human love is possible only when one takes responsibility for love.
We can think of this responsibility in three ways. The first responsibility is for one to become the master of True Love — truly free and thanking God for the freedom of love and knowing how to cultivate and control oneself. This responsibility for a love relationship should not be taken merely because of law or social convention. Instead, a person should establish responsibility through his own self-control and self-determination within the life-committing vertical relationship with God.
Second is one’s responsibility toward the object of love. By nature, people do not want their spouse’s love to be shared with others. Horizontal conjugal love, which differs from the vertical love between parents and children, loses its potential for perfection the moment it is divided. This is because the Principle of Creation requires husband and wife to become one in absolute love. Each spouse has the responsibility given by love to live absolutely for the sake of the other.
The third responsibility of love is toward children. The love of parents is the basis for children’s pride and happiness. They would wish to be born through the total and harmonious unity of their parents in True Love, and they would wish to be raised in that kind of love. The most precious responsibility of parents is not only to rear their children externally, but also to offer them life elements of True Love that can perfect their spirituality. This is why the family is so valuable. The daily experience of the heart of True Children, True Brothers and Sisters, True Spouses and True Parents cannot be acquired in any place other than the True Family.
If Adam and Eve had become a couple of True Love centered upon God, God could have dwelt in Adam as His substantial body and thus loved Eve. What is more, Adam and Eve could have become True Parents who substantially embodied God, and become the origin of the love of goodness, a life of goodness, and a lineage of goodness.
Due to the Fall, however, Adam and Eve became the substantial body of Satan and ended up becoming the original evil couple, evil parents and evil ancestors. Their union became the root of evil love, evil life and evil blood lineage. Because human beings originated from this root, they descended from the adulterous Satan, who is the enemy of God, and inherited this lineage of evil parents.
How great must have been the pain of God when, by the Fall, our human ancestors destroyed His ideal of True Love! Humankind should have been the sons and daughters of God, but they do not know God Himself as their Original Parent. Yet even though His sons and daughters serve Satan, God has worked for the Providence of Salvation. Because He is an absolute being, and His ideal of creation is also absolute, He has carried out the Providence of Salvation even amid great sadness. God’s Providence of Salvation is the Providence of Restoration, which means to recover the lost Purpose of Creation, centered on True Love. The Providence of Salvation is also the Providence of Re-creation.
The Essence of God’s Providence
Based on this point, the root of the Providence of Salvation is the re-creation of the seed of the original child, the human being who will fulfill the ideal of creation. That which God abhors — the life and blood lineage that began with the false love of the adulterer Satan must be cleansed. The essence of the Providence is the task of setting up the birth of the True Parent, the Savior united with the True Love, Life and Lineage of God.
Since the ancestors of humankind failed to fulfill their responsibility, inherited the immoral lineage of Satan, and came under the dominion of Satan, God Himself could not directly intervene and return human beings to their original position. Furthermore, God can neither unconditionally accept humankind, who chose to go to the side of the evil Archangel, nor punish them. So God uses the strategy of placing a central figure on the side of the good Archangel; by being struck first, that figure establishes the indemnity condition to recover what was lost. Satan strikes first but as a result, he must take the losing position. The First, Second and Third (Cold War) World Wars are good examples of this. The side that struck first, lost.
From the overall perspective of the Providence of Restoration, the foundation of cooperation between mother and son is very important. This was so at the time of Jacob, Moses and Jesus. God was working His Providence to separate people from satanic life and lineage by establishing the foundation of cooperation between a mother-who had to fulfill the responsibility of Eve, the originator of the Fall-and the second son of the family.
God cannot directly relate to the first son because he is in the position of having a direct blood relationship with Satan, who through the Fall was the first to dominate humankind. God has been restoring the blood lineage of goodness by having the second son, who represents the side of goodness, establish a condition. Then God has had the first son, representing the side of evil, take a position subordinate to the second son.
In the family of Adam, God carried out the providence of establishing the second son, Abel, and having him subordinate the first son, Cain. Even though Eve had fallen, as a mother she could have made an effort to create unity between the two brothers. In the end, however, Cain murdered Abel (Genesis 4:8), and the Providence of Salvation, not being fulfilled, was prolonged.
There was also a required formula of cooperation between mother and son at the time of Noah. But that formula of meaningful cooperation was not realized until the time of Rebecca and Jacob.
The human Fall was committed by three beings: Adam, Eve and the Archangel. The Archangel seduced Eve, causing the spiritual fall, and later fallen Eve seduced Adam, causing the physical fall. As a result, they turned their backs on God, and the fallen Archangel became Satan. Since the Providence of Salvation is the Providence of Restoration, the Principle of Restoration can be carried out only by going in a direction 180 degrees opposite of the Fall.
God lost Adam, who had the seed of True Love and True Life. Thus, God had to find a son with the new seed free from satanic accusation. Just as God created Adam first at the time of the creation, God must prepare a son first who has no relationship to the Fall, according to the Providence of Restoration, which is the Providence of Re-creation. This is the basis for the idea of the coming of the Messiah. The Messiah rejects the sinful lives of those with a fallen lineage under the dominion of Satan. He comes as a True Person who engrafts fallen humanity into the seed of new life. The Messiah has his roots in God, and comes as the Second Adam, who wipes away all that was committed by the first Adam. This is the reason God cannot send a superman Messiah who will work only through miracles.
For a son to be born on earth with this seed of God’s love and life there first must exist a mother. And the mother cannot give birth to this child in a conventional way. Conception must happen through the formula of restoration. All the cooperation between mothers and sons in the Providence of Restoration is a preparation and a condition for the Son of God to be born with the seed of new life, free from satanic accusation. By making conditions to avoid Satan’s attacks, and by subordinating the firstborn son who represents evil, mother and son restore the love, life and lineage that were taken over by Satan.
The Meaning of Jacob’s Victory
The Bible, which records the providential work of God, contains many stories that are difficult to understand. For example, Rebecca deceived her husband Isaac and her first son Esau, and helped her second son Jacob receive the blessing. (Genesis 27) God took the side of that mother and son, and although they used methods that at first glance seem unjust, God still blessed them for their actions.
In Adam’s family Cain and Abel fought outside the womb. Their struggle resulted in the death of Abel, the second son. Then came Jacob. On the merits of many godly people who paid indemnity and sacrificed after the time of Abel, Jacob at last caught up to the level at which Satan first dominated humankind. Then Jacob dealt with his twin brother, Esau. At the ford of Jabbok, Jacob set up the condition of spiritual victory over the angel. (Genesis 32:28) And through winning over Esau (Genesis 33), who was in the position of the substantial body of the Archangel, Jacob consequently was blessed as the first victor in history and was given the name “Israel.” But by then he was already in his fortieth year.
Satan sowed the seed of false love within the womb of Eve, which gave birth to evil life. Therefore, God needed to purify a mother’s womb from which the heavenly Son could be born. That purification period of separation from Satan had to begin at the time of conception and continue to age forty, so even though Jacob was victorious he did not meet that criteria. The great mother who assumed the responsibility to meet this condition was Tamar.
Tamar’s Providential Role
Tamar had married Er, the eldest son of Judah. (Genesis 38) But Er displeased God and he died. According to the custom of that time, Judah gave Tamar his second son, Onan, that they might bear a child for Er. But Onan, knowing that Tamar’s child would not be his own, spilled his semen on the ground. This was a sin in the eyes of God, for which Onan died.
Then Tamar wanted Shelah, the third son of Judah, for a husband, but Judah did not give him to her. Judah thought that his two sons had died because of Tamar, so he was afraid that Shelah would die and end the family lineage.
But Tamar had the conviction that she was to carry on the lineage of the chosen people. To do that, she disguised herself as a prostitute and slept with her father-in-law, Judah, and became pregnant with twins. At the time of birth, one of the twin sons, Zerah, stretched out his hand from the womb to be born first. But he was pulled back into the womb, and the second son, Perez, was born first, taking the position of the elder brother. Thus, within the womb of Tamar, the first and second sons fought, and their reversal of position separated them from Satan. That became the condition for restoration in the womb. Upon this condition, the Messiah could be conceived within the blood lineage of the chosen people, on the base of the nation of Israel which could stand up to the Roman Empire two thousand years later. The victorious foundation on the national level could then be formed in the womb of a mother free of satanic accusation, prepared for the seed of the Son of God. On this foundation, the Holy Mother Mary emerged in the mainstream of God’s Providence.
Mary Receives God’s Will
Mary, when she was engaged to Joseph, received from the Archangel Gabriel the surprising message that the Messiah would be born through her. (Luke 1:31) In those days, if an unmarried woman became pregnant, she would be killed. But Mary accepted the will of God with absolute faith, saying, “Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” (Luke 1:38)
Mary consulted with the priest Zechariah, who was her relative and was highly respected. Zechariah’s wife Elizabeth, with the help of God, was pregnant with John the Baptist. She said to Mary “Blessed are you among women and blessed is the fruit of your womb. Why is this granted to me that the mother of my Lord should come to me?” (Luke 1:42-43) With these words she testified to the coming birth of Jesus. In this way God let Mary, Zechariah, and Elizabeth know about the birth of the Messiah before anyone else. All of them had the absolutely crucial mission of following the will of God and serving Jesus. Zechariah’s family let Mary stay in their house. Jesus was conceived in the house of Zechariah.
Elizabeth and Mary were cousins on their mothers’ side. But according to God’s Providence, they were considered sisters, with Elizabeth as the elder (Cain) and Mary as the younger (Abel). Mary received Elizabeth’s help in the presence of Zechariah. Through this cooperation, Zechariah’s family, on the national level, indemnified the lack of unity between mother and son with Leah and Rachel in Jacob’s family (Genesis 29-30) This allowed Jesus to be conceived. For the first time in history, there could be born on earth, free of satanic accusation and through a prepared womb, the seed of the Son of God-the seed of the True Father. In this way, the only begotten Son of God, the owner of the first love of God, was born for the first time in history Mary had to achieve something that could not be understood by common sense, nor easily tolerated under the law of those times. Mary, Elizabeth and Zechariah had been spiritually moved. They followed the revelation that came from God and unconditionally believed that it was the will and desire of God.
Although the Son of God could be born on earth, he needed a wall of protection to grow up safely in the satanic world and fulfill the will of God. God had hoped that these three people in the family of Zechariah would establish that protective foundation. There are many points to consider with regard to how seriously the three had to dedicate themselves to protecting and serving the Son of God, and how long they should have been united with each other.
In the Bible it is recorded, “And Mary remained with her [Elizabeth] about three months, and returned to her home.” (Luke 1:56) After that, there is no biblical record of any further communication between Mary and Elizabeth and Zechariah. From the time Mary left Zechariah’s house, difficulties began for Mary and Jesus. The family of Zechariah should have been the wall of protection for Jesus until the very end.
A short time later, Joseph discovered that Mary was pregnant. How great must have been his shock at that moment! Mary, his beloved fiancée, without having had any relationship with him, had become pregnant after a three-month stay in another place. It was natural for Joseph to question Mary about who the baby in her womb belonged to. What would have happened if at that time Mary had explained everything candidly? If she had exposed everything, it could have been the end of a clan. So Mary simply responded that she was pregnant by the Holy Spirit.
Mary’s pregnancy began to show, and the people of the surrounding area became aware of it. What would have happened if Joseph had declared that he didn’t know anything about it? But Joseph was a righteous man. He believed in the revelation of God and defended Mary, saying the pregnancy was his responsibility Mary may have been ridiculed for becoming pregnant during her engagement, but she had avoided death by stoning. Joseph, who loved Mary, protected her this way in the beginning. However, there was a great deal of anguish deep in his heart. Once Jesus was born, Joseph’s suspicions about the father of Jesus only increased and his heart ached. As Jesus grew older, the two became more and more distant in heart. And because of this, family problems frequently arose. Jesus was viewed as an illegitimate son, and lacking the protection of Zechariah’s family and the love of Joseph, he grew up with an indescribable loneliness in his heart.
No Bride for Jesus
Jesus was aware of his path as the Messiah, and he lamented by himself these lonely circumstances and the serious obstacle they presented to fulfilling the will of God. The Messiah is the True Parent, and to fulfill that mission he needed to receive his substantial bride. Jesus had to reverse, at the very root, the false love by which the Archangel had caused the fall of Eve, who was growing up as the sister of Adam. Consequently, Jesus, in the place of Adam as the Son of God, should have received as his bride the younger sister of someone in an archangelic position. That bride was to have been none other than Zechariah’s daughter, the younger sister of John the Baptist. To fulfill this in a world where Satan plays the role of owner and lord, Jesus needed a foundation of protection formed by absolute faith. Tragically, the entire foundation ended up collapsing around him.
This would not have happened if Zechariah and Elizabeth, who had received the revelation and spiritual support from God, had maintained absolute faith. If they had fulfilled their responsibility Mary would have been in contact with them continually, even after her three-month stay at their house. God chose Zechariah’s family as the foremost representatives of the entire world, so that even after the birth of Jesus they would protect, serve and witness to him as the Messiah. They not only should have served Jesus as the Son of God and Messiah with utter devotion, but they should have learned the will of God through Jesus and followed him absolutely. Also, John the Baptist was born to serve Jesus and should have fulfilled his responsibility to guide everyone he led to repentance, to believe in Jesus and receive salvation. But unfortunately, although Zechariah, Elizabeth and John the Baptist testified at first to Jesus as the Son of God, there is no evidence that they served him as such. The respected priest Zechariah was simply a spectator. John the Baptist stood separate from Jesus. These circumstances blocked the people from following Jesus and made his path very difficult. And once this family lost faith in Jesus, looking at him through human eyes, there was no room for them to help him receive his bride.
We should also consider the influence that Joseph and Mary’s relationship had on Jesus. Mary had to restore the position of Eve and Tamar through indemnity, so she should have remained as only the fiancée of Joseph. Providentially, they could not be husband and wife. It was God’s desire that they not have sexual relations either before or after Jesus’ birth. Joseph still loved Mary after Jesus was born, but Mary should have wanted to separate from Joseph to raise Jesus as the Son of God.
But the real circumstances did not make this easy to do. Even though Mary’s original mind told her that she should not do so, she had sexual relations with Joseph. They had children, which was a repetition of Eve’s mistake. With this condition, Satan invaded them. With the exception of Jesus, everyone who should have protected Jesus came under the dominion of Satan: his father, his mother, his Abel-type brothers (John the Baptist and his brothers) and his Cain-type brothers (the children of Joseph).
Jesus Seen through Human Eyes
When someone is invaded by Satan, he loses all spiritual support and inspiration. Trust in God, as well as a sense of gratitude to Him, is lost. One begins to see everything through human eyes. Mary did not help Jesus with the wedding he desired. She even opposed it. This was the direct reason that Jesus could not receive his bride and could not become the True Parent; and this forced him to go the way of the cross.
Jesus’ words to Mary during the wedding at Cana, “Oh woman, what have you to do with me?” (John 2:4), reveal a reproachful heart to a mother who helped in the weddings of others but neglected to help Jesus receive his bride, the most important requirement of the Providence. With this perspective, now we can understand why Jesus asked, “Who is my mother, and who are my brothers?” (Matthew 12:48)
Faced with the opposition of Mary Zechariah, Elizabeth, and finally John the Baptist, Jesus gave up hope for their protection as he sought to fulfill his mission. Therefore, Jesus left his home in search of a new spiritual foundation to restart the Providence of Salvation.
Now without a family and household, Jesus lamented, “Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man has nowhere to lay his head.” (Matthew 8:20) With his family-level foundation lost, Jesus sought to replace it. That was his three-year course.
In the end, as people disbelieved and the disciples lost faith, Jesus endured Satan’s attack. And as his foundation crumbled, he went the way of the cross. Originally, Jesus came to the earth as the Messiah to give blessings to his disciples and all humankind. He was to build the sinless Kingdom of Heaven. But because of the lack of faith in him, he could not receive his bride, he could not become the True Parent, and he could not accomplish his mission. This is why he promised to return.
Completing the Ideal of True Parents
The Lord of the Second Advent comes to perfect the foundation of God’s Providence of Restoration left uncompleted by Jesus. That is to say, he comes as the seed of the original True Child to complete the ideal of creation. He comes to complete the ideal of True Parents, who are the origin of the True Love, True Life and the True Lineage of God. He comes on the victorious foundation of the fundamental providence of God’s side up to the time of Jesus. He also stands upon the victorious foundation of Jesus’ life and finds the bride that Jesus could not find. Together they become the True Parents to save all humankind.
Through the blessing of new marriages that pass on God’s original blood lineage, the True Parents will be able to give salvation to all humanity. People will become True Persons engrafting into the True Love, True Life and True Lineage of God. Furthermore, the Messiah will establish a True Family, creating the Kingdom of Heaven on earth. Thus, it is the International Holy Weddings that establish this new blood lineage when the Lord of the Second Advent comes in the flesh.
On the level of the great worldwide family, the Lord indemnifies that which was lost in the family of Adam and restores the True Elder Sonship, True Parentship and True Kingship that should have been perfected in Adam’s family. He will transform this world into the Kingdom of Heaven on earth under the dominion of God, opening the Kingdom of Heaven in the spirit world for registration. Humanity will enter into the era of kingship both spiritually and physically, centered on God; establish a world of victory, freedom, happiness and unity; and create the Heavenly Kingdom on earth and in the spirit world, which is God’s ideal of creation. This is the View of the Principle of the Providential History of Salvation. I hope that in the future all of you can also receive this joyous new marriage blessing.
Distinguished writers and honored guests, I want to again express my appreciation that you have taken time from your busy lives to come together from so many nations to attend this important conference.
I have the highest hopes that your achievements from this gathering can be the beginning of the guidelines from which we can build an eternal future for our descendants.
May God bless you and your families.