Introduction and Clarification of Terminology
The text contained within these pages is a gift to you from the Interreligious and Internation al Federation for World Peace and the Family Federation for World Peace and Unification for your prayer and contemplation. It contains a series of reflections from major religious leaders in the spirit world. Though some of the ideas expressed may challenge your conventional understanding, the urgency of these times calls for new and deeper insight into the nature of life itself. Accordingly, this text is being presented in newspapers and other media throughout the world. The tragic events of September 11, 2001, have also challenged our conventional understanding. A world that once seemed safe and comfortable now appears vulnerable, as we are reminded of the fragility of life itself. The hopes for peace that arose with the new millennium have all but been dashed. In the face of uncertainty, we hold fast to family and loved ones, searching for what is truly lasting and meaningful in our lives. Long before this crisis, Reverend and Mrs. Sun Myung Moon began working together with the world's major religious leaders to remove the barriers between religions and build bridges of peace. Immediately following the tragedy of September 11th, they convened a gathering of 500 religious, educational, diplomatic and political leaders from 101 nations in the heart of New York City to address the roots of the crisis under the theme, "Global Violence: Crisis and Hope." Leading Muslim clerics and scholars joined with Christian and Jewish leaders in prayer, and to establish bonds that would exalt faith in God and lead toward global peace.
Subsequently, from October to December 2001, they conducted a speaking tour in 25 major cities in Korea, Japan and America to consider, "The Nation and World of Peace Which God and All People Desire." In the process, they have appointed 7000 leading men and women from diverse faiths and walks of life as "Ambassadors of Peace," who share the commitment to transcend the barriers of religion, race and nationality in the common cause of peace.
At the heart of Reverend Moon's worldview is a rich understanding of the inner, or spiritual, dimension of life. The world's great scriptures concur that human beings have both a temporal, physical nature and an eternal, spiritual nature. Saint Paul noted that, "It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body" (1 Corinthians 15:44).
With the new Millennium, we have entered the Completed Testament Age in which the spirit world is coming closer to us than ever before. To respond to this new age we are sharing new insights revealed from the spirit world itself so that we might contemplate the fuller meaning and purpose of life, the afterlife and our long cherished path to reach heaven.
In an age of reason, science and skepticism, some have tended to doubt all that could not be measured with our physical senses. But 20th century science, with its quantum theory, particle physics, and relativity, has made traditional understandings of matter, time and space obsolete, opening the door to the infinite. We live in a world that is moved by invisible forces, governed by invisible laws, and ultimately made of invisible energy. Now, a new paradigm is being introduced through which to understand reality.
In his letter to the Hebrews, Saint Paul referred to this physical reality as a "copy and shadow" of the heavenly, or spiritual realm (Hebrews 8:5). The Bible makes clear that life does not cease with the death of the flesh.
Modern society seeks comfort and satisfaction in the material reality, relegating the spiritual dimension of life to the realm of superstition. But many of our own daily experiences transcend the scope of our physical senses.
A mother is aware of the death of her soldier son or daughter in a distant land at the moment it occurs, long before receiving notification; we think of a friend out of the blue, and in the next moment they call or visit; we feel the presence or guidance of departed loved ones, or they appear in a dream far more intense than our experience of daytoday life, sharing intuition and foresight. These and other insights teach us that our mind is not limited by time or space.
The following is a communication from the spiritual world, resulting from a seminar conducted with the historical leaders of the world's faiths. The seminar's purpose: to break down the barriers between the four religions of JudeoChristianity, Buddhism, Confucianism and Islam in the spiritual world, paving the way for peace and harmony on earth. The content includes the reflections of 80 historical leaders of JudeoChristianity, as well as 13 disciples of Confucius. The seminar was conducted by Dr. Sang Hun Lee, who was President of the Unification Thought Research Institute in his earthly life, and who passed into the Spiritual World in 1997. Dr. Lee interviewed the participants and conveyed these messages, which were recorded by Mrs. Young Soon Kim between August 27 and November 13, 2001.
Knowing that such information is new and unusual to many western readers, we encourage you to digest it thoroughly with a prayerful yet open mind. Translation from Korean to English presented some difficulties in terminology. The term "Messiah," for example, as used throughout the narrative should be understood broadly. Its literal meaning is, "anointed one," and refers not only to Jesus, who was anointed by God for the restoration of humankind, but also to those anointed by Jesus to carry on and complete the work of restoration upon his foundation.
When Jesus was accused of making himself God in John 10:3335, he answered by quot ing Psalm 82: "I have said, Ye are gods, and all of you are children of the most high," comparing his divinity to that which all are meant to inherit. Thus the anointing, or messiahship used here in reference to Reverend Moon does not mean that the revelations claim that Rev. Moon is Jesus. Jesus' role as savior and Messiah will never change. Rev. Moon teaches that Jesus and the Holy Spirit are the True Parents of spiritual rebirth.
What it does indicate is that Jesus anointed Rev. and Mrs. Moon as the True Parents of Humanity to complete the work of the Second Advent by establishing true families within all faiths, as the dwelling place of God. As Jesus predicted: "He that believeth onme, the works that I do shall he do also, and greater works than these shall he do..."(John 14:12). The narrative testifies to the value and position of Jesus, while at the same time highlighting the crucial role played by those alive on earth in completing the providence of restoration. We pray for God's blessing for you, your family and your work.
Clarification of Terminology
Used in Clouds of Witnesses: The Saints Testimonies
In his letter to the Hebrews, Saint Paul referred to this physical reality as a copy and shadow of the heavenly, or spiritual realm. (Heb. 8:5) The Bible makes clear that life does not cease with the death of the flesh. Indeed, most major religions hold the concept that a person s soul continues on after his or her physical body passes away. Where a person s soul goes to dwell is determined by the quality and character of his or her life on earth, especially the quality of faith and depth of love.
Up to the present, the realms of heaven and hell have been divided, separated by the same barriers of religion, nationality, race and culture that have divided people on earth. This is because people on the other side continue with the same prejudices and limitations they had on earth. However, in the Last Days, when God establishes His Kingdom, there should be unity in heaven as well as on earth: The Lord shall be one and His name be one (Zech. 14:9) and The kingdoms of this world become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever and ever. (Rev. 11:15)
The testimonies that follow describe how leaders of diverse denominations and religions, even atheists, are gathering at conferences in heaven to study the truth of God and commit themselves to supporting the providence of this age. They are humbling themselves before the one true God and Jesus work at the Second Coming. Readers can glimpse the unfolding process that is unifying the heavenly realms.
Acts 2:17-21 reveals that in the last days, I will pour out My Spirit on all flesh, your sons and your daughters shall prophesy& and I will show wonders in the heavens and in the earth. This teaches us that the Spirit will move gifted individuals to have visions of the spirit world, showing people on earth the wonders of heaven. At a time when religious conflict seems rampant, this vision of the gathering of heaven s forces united as one mind under the one God and Creator of heaven and earth comes as a welcome message of hope.
Above all, this is a testimony to the work of Jesus at the Second Coming of Christ. Jesus supreme sacrifice at Calvary and the atoning blood of the cross grants us the redemption of sins. His resurrection was victory over death, hell, sin and the grave for all eternity. Of this there is no dispute. Yet few articles of the Christian religion are more divisive than doctrines of the Second Coming.
Many premillennialists believe Christ will return in the air to collect the faithful and one thousand years later establish his Kingdom on the earth. Others with a post-millennial view believe Christ will come only after the millennial reign. Still others don t accept the idea of a millennial Kingdom at all. In matters of eschatology, many Christians of good faith have agreed to disagree.
Is it possible that our generation is the one that is to welcome the Second Coming? When we study the signs of the times in Matthew 24, we can recognize their fulfillment, one by one, in our time. Notably, And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come, is commonly seen as being fulfilled during the 20th century.
Many Christians are comforted by the prediction in Matthew 24:30 that Jesus will return on the clouds. However, at his first advent also there were those who predicted that Christ would come in the clouds, based on Daniel chapter 7. Of course, we know that Jesus was born on the earth and did not float down out of the sky. Yet the prophecy in Daniel can be regarded as having been fulfilled in Jesus advent if we take clouds to be symbolic. Thus, John 3:13 reveals that Jesus came down from heaven. Hebrews 12:1 describes a cloud of witnesses, the spiritual aggregation of Old Testament saints who hoped for their reward in Christ. Jude 14 likewise reports of Enoch s prophecy that Jesus would come with thousands and thousands of holy saints. This was the spiritual cloud upon which Jesus came. The same circumstance will occur at the Second Coming: The armies of heaven were following him, riding on white horses and dressed in fine linen, white and clean. (Rev. 19:14) Indeed, their testimony is contained in the following pages.
This is their testimony: that Christ at the Second Coming is born on earth, just as Jesus was at the first coming. He is born on earth, that he might fulfill the hope of the Lord s Prayer, Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth.
These testimonies affirm that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, Messiah, and the Savior of humankind. Through his death on the cross he atoned for our sins, and his resurrection delivers us from death and brings us into the power of new life. He sits at the right hand of God and leads all the saints in Heaven. However, if Jesus at the Second Coming works through his anointed born on earth, how will it occur? Let s examine the pattern displayed in other documented second comings.
Malachi 4:5 said that Elijah would come again. Thus, the chosen people were anticipating the return of the actual figure of Elijah, the prophet of old. However, Jesus said that John the Baptist is Elijah who is to come. (Matt. 11:14) Furthermore, the angel Gabriel had informed Zechariah that his son John was born in the spirit and power of Elijah. (Luke 1:17) Therein is revealed the biblical principle of second comings. The mission is entitled with the name of the predecessor. Thus, Elijah s mission is called Elijah. John the Baptist takes up Elijah s mission and is the Elijah who fulfills Malachi 4:5. Adam s mission was taken up by another Adam, the last Adam. (1 Cor 15:45)
This testimony of the saints asserts that Jesus has anointed his representative on earth to fulfill the mission of the Second Coming. Consistent with Rev. 2:17 and 19:12, he has a new name that had not been revealed in the days of the New Testament. He will manifest greater works as the extension of Jesus mission that was laid down in Gethsemane in sorrow and tears.
If these testimonies are true, and Jesus has in fact appointed another person to fulfill the mission of the Second Coming, then how should we view this new person in relation to Jesus? Since Jesus appointed him, surely they are not rivals! Nevertheless, it is likely that many Christians will regard him as an Antichrist. It is worth considering whether such a judgment is from God or from man. It is a human failing for churches to be rivals. However, the saints in heaven testify that Jesus and Christ at the Second Coming are one.
In John 9:28-29, some Jews berated a man born blind who was testifying to Jesus. Then they hurled insults at him and said, "You are this fellow's disciple! We are disciples of Moses! We know that God spoke to Moses, but as for this fellow, we don't even know where he comes from. Regarding Jesus and Moses from a human point of view, they regarded them as rivals.
Yet on the Mount of Transfiguration, Jesus is seen conferring with Moses and Elijah. Two men, Moses and Elijah, appeared in glorious splendor, talking with Jesus. They spoke about his departure, which he was about to bring to fulfillment at Jerusalem. (Luke 9:30-32)
Moses brought the Law, to which the Jews were so devoted that it became a stumbling block to receiving Jesus. Jesus brought a higher truth the Gospel. Hence, many Jews could not believe in Jesus. Nevertheless, Moses certainly recognized Jesus as the Messiah, even if ordinary Jews did not. Moses and Jesus were of one mind and heart when Jesus set off to Jerusalem to consummate his Passion. In truth, Jesus victory over death through the cross and resurrection was also Moses victory.
Likewise, this testimony of the saints asserts that there is no gap between Jesus and the man he has appointed to the mission of the Second Coming. They work together, Jesus in heaven and the person of the Second Coming on earth, to fulfill the will of God to restore everything. (Acts 3:21) They are of one heart and mind to do the Father s will. Their struggle is a common struggle; their suffering is a common suffering; their victory is a common victory.
If another person is fulfilling the mission of the Second Coming of Christ, what shall we call him? Messiah? Savior? King of Kings? These are some of his biblical titles, and the saints in heaven, being faithful Christians, proclaim him thus. Could they do otherwise?
When Jesus was accused of making himself God in John 10:33-35, he answered by quoting Psalm 82: I said, You are gods, and all of you are children of the Most High, comparing his divinity to that which all are meant to inherit. Thus the anointing or terms Messiah, Savior and King used here in reference to Reverend Moon does not mean that the revelations claim that Rev. Moon is Jesus or God. Jesus role as Savior and Messiah will never change.
What it does indicate is that Jesus anointed Rev. and Mrs. Moon as the True Parents of humanity to complete the work of restoration at the Second Advent by establishing true families as God s dwelling places. As Jesus predicted: He who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do (John 14:12). The narrative testifies to the value and position of Jesus, while at the same time highlighting the crucial role played by those alive on Earth in completing God s providence to restore all things (Matt. 17:11).
This applies particularly to the person commissioned by Jesus to fulfill the mission of the Second Coming of Christ. When the saints call him by the titles Messiah, Savior and King of kings, they are not thereby asserting that he supplants Jesus. The mission of the Second Coming is an entirely new dispensation.
Take, for example, the term Savior. Jesus is and ever remains the Savior, who died on the cross to redeem our sins. However, 1 Peter 1:5 states that Christians are shielded with faith, until the coming of the salvation that is to be revealed in the last days. The salvation that is to be revealed in the last days is not the salvation that Jesus brought through the cross; that salvation was already revealed. It is a further salvation that is to occur at the Second Coming. Hebrews 9:28: He will come a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him. Therefore, Christ at the Second Coming can be termed a Savior in his own right, on account of what he is to accomplish at the Second Advent. This does not take anything away from Jesus primary role as the Savior, for what he accomplished through his death and resurrection.
The testimony also applies the title King of Kings to the person of the Second Coming of Christ. In doing so, it consistent with Rev. 19:16, where King of Kings is a title of Christ at the Second Coming. The saints are not thereby asserting that this person is God, even though in 1 Tim 6:15 the title King of kings is used of God. Jesus is the King of kings in heaven, who sits at the right hand of God (Heb. 1:3, Matt. 22:44), as he does in this testimony. But God also views His earthly representative at the Second Coming as the King of kings on earth.
Scripture amply attests that Christ at the Second Coming will rule over the nations (Ps. 2, Isa. 2:3, Rev. 11:15, 19:15). This testimony reveals the beginnings of Christ s universal rule when, for the first time, the leaders of the world s religions acknowledge his chosen role. It reveals the opening of a providence that will conclude with the happy realization of Christ s millennial reign over all the earth.
The mission of the Second Coming is the most glorious mission, and that glory should redound on his person. Nevertheless, while he is walking the earth, his glory is hidden, just as Jesus glory was invisible to the people of his day. When a blind man praised Jesus as the Son of David, the Pharisees who heard it immediately declared that he was possessed by demons. (Matt. 12:23-24) Isn t it predictable that this spiritual proclamation of the Second Coming of Christ would be greeted by cries of pretender and false Christ ?
The coming of Jesus on earth 2000 years ago did not harmonize with Jewish doctrinal expectations. No one came to Jesus as a natural conclusion of any doctrine. Those who recognized Jesus did so by the workings of the Spirit. Simon Peter answered, "You are the Christ, the Son of the living God." Jesus replied, "Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by man, but by my Father in heaven. (Matt. 16:16-17) Knowing how difficult it was for the people of Jesus day to recognize him, we encourage the reader to consider this message of the Second Coming with deep prayer and an open mind.
These spiritual testimonies were conveyed through two chosen individuals, one working in heaven and the other reporting to people on the earth. Dr. Sung Han Lee, who passed into the spirit world in 1997, is best known for his critique and counterproposal to Marxism-Leninism that was widely disseminated around the world during the Cold War era. A tireless teacher of God s truth, Dr. Lee educated countless atheists and believers of various religions. Young Soon Kim is graced with the gifts of spiritual hearing and spiritual sight. While in the Spirit she is able to record Dr. Lee s narrative for earthly people to read.
The book of Hebrews describes the Old Testament saints as a cloud of witnesses in heaven, surrounding and urging on Christians as they run their race, on the principle that those heavenly saints should not be made perfect apart from us on the earth (Heb. 11:39-12:1). In the same way the saints are calling out to us today, describing to us the current situation from the vantage point of heaven. They are urging us to do our part, so that together we might see the dawning of the Kingdom of God, in heaven and on the earth.
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