The Life and Mission of Jesus Christ
34 Then Simeon blessed them and said to Mary, his mother: “This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be spoken against, 35 so that the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your own soul too.” ~ Luke 2:34-35
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was with God in the beginning. 3 Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made…
14 The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth. ~ John 1:1-14
The pattern of creation that God wanted to enjoy centering on human beings was not realized on this earth due to the fall of Adam and Eve, our progenitors. God created all existence in six days through the Word. All created beings … hoped for one mediator, one center that would enable all of creation to move if God moves and rest if God rests. If human beings had become such a center, the chaotic history that has unfolded on this earth would not have taken place.
God’s hope was to see one existence emerge who could represent him and who would be able to take action on his behalf. God not only wished for this in the course of providential history after the human Fall; it was the center of God’s hope from the time of the creation.
Jesus came as the incarnation of the Word. At the same time, centering on God’s love, he must become the embodiment of life … In the Bible, there is a verse that reads, “I am the way and the truth and the life.” (John 14:6) Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life. This signifies that, although due to the fall of Adam and Eve, God’s word went back unchanged to God’s spirit without being attained on earth; God again bestowed this word upon humanity through one man living on this earth… With the appearance of Jesus, the Word that had been buried in God’s mind could be transferred to Jesus’ heart. This is the most joyful good news for humankind.
What must Jesus have felt when, after appealing as the substantial being of this historical Word, he announced the Word? What was in his heart? Jesus knew that his words represented the will of the historical providence. What’s more, he felt the deep heart of his words, which represented, what was hidden in God’s mind. He understood that his words were the words that would begin Gods history of re-creation which would continue until God’s will was attained on earth for the whole of eternity
Jesus, the incarnation of the truth, said, “I am the way and the truth.” What was the purpose of these words of Jesus? Jesus spoke in order for human beings to become incarnations of the Word like him. This would be attained only if people came to believe in Jesus’ words.
~ Let Us Be the People Who Attend God,
February 2, 1958
The Only Begotten Son
In the Bible, Jesus is described as the “only begotten Son.” What does this mean? Jesus was the only person who inherited the total love and total lineage of God, and the only person who could represent it. For that reason, he had the power of God’s lineage flowing through him. That is why he is the Savior.
We know that God is the Father of mankind; furthermore, Jesus is the only begotten Son of that God. Therefore, it is only through Jesus that we can be connected to the lineage of God; otherwise, God’s lineage cannot flow through mankind.
~ True Parents and I,
June 15, 1986
John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believes m him shall not perish but shall have eternal life.” The most important part of that verse is that God loved the world. However, many Christians put the greatest emphasis upon the second part of the verse, forgetting the most important thing: that God so loved the world. God did not love the church or the individual so much that he sent his only begotten Son. It was because God loved the world, the universe, so much. Thus Jesus is the one who was meant to save the world. When we believe in Jesus, the world is very much in our minds. God is in Jesus and Jesus is in God.
“I am the way and the truth and the light. No one comes to the Father except through me.” ~ John 14:6
Jesus was born without sin. Jesus came without having anything to do with satanic blood. It had been completely separated front him — God had prepared this line for a long, long time, so that Jesus could come as a sinless child. Therefore, he was indeed able to claim: “I am the only begotten Son, the only Son of God.”
In human history; this was the first time a sinless child was born on earth. “I am one with God,” Jesus said. “The person who has seen me has seen the Father,” he said. In the 14th chapter of the Book of John, Jesus says, “I am in my Father and you in me: and I in you. He who has my commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves me; and he who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and manifest myself to him.” So Jesus came to restore the sinless position of love, the love that had been lost since the time of Adam. This fact has not been known until now.
There is a reason, a most important reason, why no one could come to the Father except by going through Jesus. He is our only bridge, our only hope, our only channel for reaching God. Therefore, Jesus proclaimed, “I am The Way. The Truth, and The Life. and without going through me, no one reaches the Father.”
~ The New Messiah and the Formula of God in History,
February 21, 1972
There have been in human history many saints, many religions geniuses, and many wise men. But no one else could play the role of Jesus, who alone brings us to the Father. This is because he came in a stainless, sinless position which no one else has. He is the only channel to reach God. Though Buddha, Confucius, and Mohammed were all religious saints, they did not have the same relationship with God that Jesus had. Therefore, the birth of Jesus as the Messiah was the day of hope for all humankind.
The Genealogy Of Jesus
This is the genealogy of Jesus the Messiah the son of David, the son of Abraham:
2 Abraham was the father of Isaac, Isaac the father of Jacob, Jacob the father of Judah and his brothers, 3 Judah the father of Perez and Zerah, whose mother was Tamar, Perez the father of Hezron, Hezron the father of Ram, 4 Ram the father of Amminadab, Amminadab the father of Nahshon, Nahshon the father of Salmon, 5 Salmon the father of Boaz, whose mother was Rahab, Boaz the father of Obed, whose mother was Ruth, Obed the father of Jesse, 6 and Jesse the father of King David.
David was the father of Solomon, whose mother had been Uriah’s wife, 7 Solomon the father of Rehoboam, Rehoboam the father of Abijah, Abijah the father of Asa, 8 Asa the father of Jehoshaphat, Jehoshaphat the father of Jehoram, Jehoram the father of Uzziah, 9 Uzziah the father of Jotham, Jotham the father of Ahaz, Ahaz the father of Hezekiah, 10 Hezekiah the father of Manasseh, Manasseh the father of Amon, Amon the father of Josiah, 11 and Josiah the father of Jeconiah and his brothers at the time of the exile to Babylon.
12 After the exile to Babylon: Jeconiah was the father of Shealtiel, Shealtiel the father of Zerubbabel, 13 Zerubbabel the father of Abihud, Abihud the father of Eliakim, Eliakim the father of Azor, 14 Azor the father of Zadok, Zadok the father of Akim, Akim the father of Elihud, 15 Elihud the father of Eleazar, Eleazar the father of Matthan,
Matthan the father of Jacob, 16 and Jacob the father of Joseph, the husband of Mary, and Mary was the mother of Jesus who is called the Messiah.
17 Thus there were fourteen generations in all from Abraham to David, fourteen from David to the exile to Babylon, and fourteen from the exile to the Messiah.
Why was Jesus’ family tree described in such detail in the Bible? It reveals God’s effort to create an unstained lineage out of which Jesus could be born. The struggle of Esau and Jacob, the special situation of Joseph’s mother Rachel, and [the story of] Tamar are all significant. The Bible records some things that seem to be irregular, but it was necessary so that the satanic lineage could be liquidated, allowing a new ancestor to emerge.
~ Parents, Children and the World Centered upon Oneself,
June 5, 1983
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.
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 the sacrifices of many godly people since 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 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.
~ View of the Principle of the Providential History of Salvation,
April 16, 1996
Tamar disguised herself as a prostitute and slept with Judah, her father-in-law. In doing this she prevailed in faith over her father-in-law and husband in order to pass on the lineage of God. It was a revolutionary, life-risking act on her part. From her womb, the elder and younger brother relationship was restored.
~ Total Calculation or Accounting of God’s Historical Providence,
December 25, 1994
Two brothers, Perez and Zerah, were struggling inside Tamar’s womb. At the time of delivery the brother who was later named Zerah reached his hand out of his mother’s womb. In order to clearly mark who was first born, the midwife tied a red thread around his wrist… After the red thread was tied on, however, a great struggle took place in Tamar’s womb, in which Perez fiercely pulled Zerah back in and was born first himself! Thus, the name Perez means “he who pushed aside.”
The victory won by Jacob [younger] over Esau [elder] was consummated to the mother’s womb through Perez and Zerah. Now restoration was complete in that lineage and there was no room for Satan to exert any claim, even from the time of conception in the womb. That family tree continued uninterrupted for 2,000 years down through the birth of Jesus. As you can see, God prepared a foundation that was totally cleansed from the root, so that at an opportune time God could have a sinless Son out of that lineage, over whom Satan could have no claim…
After 4,000 years of biblical history since the fall of Adam and Eve, the time finally arrived for the birth of the Messiah. It was Mary who was chosen to fulfill that most extraordinary dispensation in the sight of God. She was a culmination of all God’s work through 4,000 biblical years of history and the pinnacle of this dispensation.
~ The Day of the Victory of Heaven,
October 4. 1979
Mary when she was engaged to Joseph, received from the Archangel Gabriel the surprising message that the Messiah would he born through her. (Luke 1:31) In those days, if an unmarried woman became pregnant, she could 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 immediately left her home and journeyed to consult 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 anybody else. All of them had the absolutely crucial mission of following the will of God and sewing 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. 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.
34 “How will this be,” Mary asked the angel, “since I am a virgin?”
35 The angel answered, “The Holy Spirit will come on you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God. 36 Even Elizabeth your relative is going to have a child in her old age, and she who was said to be unable to conceive is in her sixth month. 37 For no word from God will ever fail.”
38 “I am the Lord’s servant,” Mary answered. “May your word to me be fulfilled.” Then the angel left her.
39 At that time Mary got ready and hurried to a town in the hill country of Judea, 40 where she entered Zechariah’s home and greeted Elizabeth.
Matthew 1: 18-21…
18 This is how the birth of Jesus the Messiah came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be pregnant through the Holy Spirit. 19 Because Joseph her husband was faithful to the law, and yet did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly.
20 But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. 21 She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.”
The 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; 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…
Because Mary made up her mind to give her life for the mission of God, God cooperated to help her. An angel appeared to Joseph in a dream, telling him not to fear taking Mary as his wife. Joseph was also a man of God, and where another man might have dismissed this as but an absurd dream, he took it seriously. He turned his back on the external appearance of the situation and accepted it as God’s will. He took Mary as his wife, knowing that she was carrying a child that was not his. Do you think that as a matter of course he asked her whose baby it was, since after all he had saved her life? Could she reply that she conceived through the Holy Spirit and expect Joseph to accept 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 Macy, protected her this way in the beginning. However, there was a great deal of anguish deep in his heart.
~ View of the Principle of the Providential History of Salvation,
April 16, 1996
4 So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. 5 He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. 6 While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 7 and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them. ~ Luke 2:4-7
The Christian world honors Christmas by setting up nativity scenes of Jesus in a manger. Actually a manger is a very lowly place. They celebrate Jesus’ being placed in a manger, but is this the kind of place God’s Son, the King of kings, should he born? Do you think God truly wanted his Son to be born in a stable?
What about Jesus’ mother, who knew through revelation what kind of son she was bearing? Do you think she was happy that her son, the Messiah, was born in a stable? I’m sure Mary would have thought that the Son of God would deserve more than the most elegant palace. The appropriate way for the Son of God to arrive would be with announcements of hour-by-hour bulletins and a proclamation throughout the land when he arrived.
If the priests, scribes, and rulers of Israel had known of Jesus’ coming, I’m sure that during the months before his birth everyone would have been eagerly awaiting his arrival, and would have come to worship even before he was born. Mary would have been treated like a queen wherever she went. A record would have been kept of everything she did — if she ate a snack, how many times she went to the bathroom, how long she slept. If people had truly known that the Son of God was in Mary’s womb, the twelve tribes of Israel would all have competed in trying to serve him before his birth.
If that had been the case, do you think the people would ever have allowed him to be born in a stable? A great fanfare would have been prepared, great bells readied to ring and bands to play. Should the birth of the Son of God be an event greater than Americas Independence Day? America preserves her cracked Liberty Bell, but a small bell that rang to herald the day of Jesus’ birth would be preserved in a shrine as a priceless item. If there were a record of people fighting each other to be the first to offer the new baby some gill at his birth, would that make Jesus unhappy?
Jesus came after God had worked for 4,000 years in preparation. After all that preparation the greatest event was the coming of God’s Son to this earth. Is the fact that he then came in such a humble way to a lowly place the pride or shame of history? Ultimately Jesus was crucified, but if Jesus had begun his life in the recognition that he was the Son of God, would the history of his life have been different? Truly he would have been treated as the king of Israel. Furthermore, if he had been embraced by the chosen people, then he should have received more glory as God’s representative than the emperor of Rome.
God wanted to see all the great priests of the day gather to hold the holy child. If Jesus had been recognized from the moment of his birth as the Son of God and the long-awaited Messiah, then all the chiefs of the 12 tribes would have competed to serve him as he was growing up… From the early days Jesus would have known he was born as the Son of God and his mission was to be the King of Kings, who would initiate Gods kingdom here on earth. Would history have been different then? Then wouldn’t the entire world celebrate Jesus’ birth, generation after generation?
Will fruitcake and ice cream make a merry Christmas? Christmas is truly the celebration of the birth of God’s Son, but without knowing God’s purpose for sending him there cannot truly be a celebration of Christmas… After hearing me speak, “Merry Christmas” becomes “Concerned Christmas.” The true content of Christmas is the amount of love you gave during the year. That is far more dazzling than any amount of decorations.
~ The True Meaning Of Christmas,
December 25, 1979
The Boy Jesus
41 Every year Jesus’ parents went to Jerusalem for the Festival of the Passover. 42 When he was twelve years old, they went up to the festival, according to the custom. 43 After the festival was over, while his parents were returning home, the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem, but they were unaware of it. 44 Thinking he was in their company, they traveled on for a day. Then they began looking for him among their relatives and friends. 45 When they did not find him, they went back to Jerusalem to look for him. 46 After three days they found him in the temple courts, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. 47 Everyone who heard him was amazed at his understanding and his answers. 48 When his parents saw him, they were astonished. His mother said to him, “Son, why have you treated us like this? Your father and I have been anxiously searching for you.”
49 “Why were you searching for me?” he asked. “Didn’t you know I had to be in my Father’s house?“50 But they did not understand what he was saying to them.
51 Then he went down to Nazareth with them and was obedient to them. But his mother treasured all these things in her heart.
More children were born to Mary and Joseph, and they all knew that somehow Jesus was different. The Bible does not speak directly about this, but the fact is that when Jesus was a boy there was a great deal of tension, and even Mary was distant with him at times because she was a victim of the everyday situation. Jesus was lonely as a child and often left the house to be alone. Once his parents even left him behind in Jerusalem, only coming back to find him after three days. How could parents leave a young boy behind that way? There were not many happy days in his family.
I’m sure many of you have grown up with a stepparent, and even in an open society like America’s today there is tension between a stepparent and stepchildren, so imagine how much more difficult it was 2,000 years ago. In this sense Americans are in a position to be sympathetic with Jesus’ position; many young people are experiencing the same kind of suffering Jesus went through.
~ Day of the Victory of Heaven,
October 3, 1979
Jesus grew up in the midst of a complicated relationship between Mary and Joseph. Even as a child, Jesus sensed that there was something tangled between them. Between Joseph and Jesus there was no blood relationship, so they were like strangers to each other. On Mary’s part, even though she may have wanted to do things for her son, like make clothes for him, she had to find out if on that day Joseph was in a good or bad mood. Jesus could sense clearly that his parents had an inner quarrel because of him…
What about Jesus’ brothers? His brothers could sense that there was some untold, entangled story centered on Jesus. That’s why even they could not trust or believe in what Jesus was doing.
Furthermore, not only Joseph but also all of Jesus’ relatives came to know that.
Jesus worked as an assistant to his carpenter father while inwardly preparing for his mission. He knew that he was going to do a great mission under God’s guidance. Sometimes Jesus felt like asking his mother, “Why, why am I treated like this? Who is my father? What is your problem and how does it fit in?” Mary could never answer Jesus. There was an emotional distance between Mary and the child.
As time went by, Jesus came to know what to do and what direction he was headed. God told him about his mission. To carry out his mission, he had to pass through a period of preparation and to prepare a good environment to help him. He could not expect people to receive him without that foundation. Jesus always wished that his own parents, brothers, and relatives could help him in the mission. If his parents would not help him, then who else would?
Jesus came as the master of love, the prince of love, and the center of love. He should have received more love — from his parents, from his brothers and sisters, and from his relatives and neighbors — than anyone else in the world. But we cannot say that he received such love from anyone… How full of grief must Jesus’ heart have been! The kingdom of God is supposed to be the kingdom of love. Jesus, who came as the center of love, should have established that kind of family first of all. But it seemed hopeless to him, so he had to flee from his home. He was then 30 years old.
~ On Jesus’ Family,
December 25, 1971
Jesus resolved during his 30 years of preparation to carry out a successful battle in the future through a life of practice. He determined that even if he would have to become a sacrifice due to the ostracism of the Jews, he would take this or that kind of path and establish such and such kinds of methods. He had many such ideas that no one else even imagined. He planned that, if the people believed in him, he would take such and such measures; if they did not believe, then he would do this and that. While no one else was concerned about heaven, Jesus was deep in prayer.
During the 30 years that he spent in the family of Joseph, he could not express joy when his brothers and sisters were joyful. When his relatives and the congregation in the synagogue rejoiced, he could not rejoice. Although Jesus had many things to say, he had to remain silent. We need to understand the sorrow that Jesus experienced during those 30 years of preparation. Even though he desperately wanted to witness to the truth by going from place to place throughout Israel, he had to help with his family affairs. Since Jesus was about to pioneer the kingdom of heaven, there was not a day when he in his heart did not visit the realm of God’s ideals at least several times. We need to understand that Jesus was this kind of person.
No one on earth recognized Jesus’ internal suffering, yet God was on his side. When Jesus was shaving wood with a plane or was cutting a piece of wood with an ax, he wanted to experience the heart and situation of God and build the kingdom of heaven that God desired. Even when he was taking a break after a meal, this desire of his heart did not fade away. There was not a moment when he did not have these thoughts.
Picture Jesus and his heart as he was making preparations. Even if the clothes that he wore were poor and the expression on his face pitiful, his gaze was unmatched by any conqueror or pioneer of the earth. His gaze could connect with the heart of God and see through the universe. Accordingly, as he looked at the world with this heart and perspective, he could not help feeling miserable and tortured. He could not avoid sorrow.
Hs gaze was for the sake of the Jewish people; his heart was for the sake of the nation of Israel and the entire world. This is why Jesus shed endless tears. When he heard the rumor that someone was about to pass away; he felt that it was he himself. If there was someone who was unjustly persecuted or wronged, he felt that it was he who was undergoing the privations. In his heart, Jesus looked at all the tragic affairs of his community as if they were unfolding in his life.
~ The Incarnation of Jesus, a Pioneer,
February 1, 1959
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Sun Myung Moon Sermon (pre-1960) links & images courtesy of Tparents.org
Sun Myung Moon Sermon (1960-) links Sunhak Institute of History (USA)
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