IS EXPERIENCE THE ULTIMATE MEASURE OF TRUTH?
>I recently visited your home page on the web and read about your experiences and views of the Unification Church. You are to complemented on your sincerity for having taken the time and resources (personal, I assume) to express your convictions in such an articulate manner.
Why don't you qualify that you're a member?
>As I read through your materials, it is obvious that you are man of high ideals and also a deeply religious person. (Despite being unable to bring up your religious reasons for leaving the Unifications Church.)
Here we get into the slight underhanded criticism - and unreasonalbe, too. If you had read the section "Why section I left (religious reasons)" ... there a PLENTY of religious reasons. Or did you and it just bounced off your Unification paradigm?
>However, one question comes to mind: do you write based on what you BELIEVE or what you KNOW? This is not just a matter of semantics. Of course, your experience of the Moon organization is direct and therefore goes beyond belief. But, your theological views and critique of the Unification Church's doctrine seem rather "canned".
Interesting perspective... By "canned" you mean ...biblical?!
>To put this into perspective, let me address just one issue. Is Jesus God? Although I am aware this is a widely-held view among many millions of Christians, I KNOW personally that this view is incorrect.
Oh, you mean like Mormons KNOW that Joseph Smith is the one and only true prophet of God? So if you talk to this friend of mine who had this light and energy experience when becoming baptized by them, you'll follow him because he KNOWS?
>How do I know? I have directly experienced both God and Jesus in a way, I suspect, that few people who have ever lived can claim to have done.
Wow. How humble. Now, how do you KNOW it really was JESUS, and not the angel of light disguised as Jesus? He told you? Oh, of course, the angel of light doesn't lie when you ask him in the name of "True Parents".
>Based on my personal experience, I can say that one of the fundamental tenets of Christianity is incorrect. Jesus exists as one of the brightest, if not the brightest, spirit in the universe, but he is not God. In my understanding, he is a fully perfected man of love. If you do not believe me, please go ahead and check this out for yourself!
Oh, so you're actually contradicting what Moon said about Heung Jin Nim: That he is indeed the highest (and thus brightest) spirit in the spirit world - because he has reached perfection and has been "blessed" (in marriage) by Moon?
>Of course, the view that one of the most basic tenets of Christianity is flawed is preposterous to many so-called Christians. Yet I have never met a Christian who has been able to verify that Jesus is God first-hand. I have only met people who tell me what they believe.
There are plenty of people who had personal experiences with Jesus ..but, you know, my friend, that's so interesting. Every single cult emphasizes EXPERIENCE! I guess it's because satan can REALLY MESS with our senses. Did you know that in some hindu-based cult members actually see their master fly? Does that mean he's actually flying? Filmed documentaries show that he's not. Actually, through hypnotic suggestion these people can be made to "see" and "experience" GREEN ELEPHANTS flying through the air. So, you believe them too when they tell you they KNOW their master is the only and true enlightened master on earth?
Ever thought about why God gave us the Bible? Is it possible that he gave us his word so that we would have a MEASURE of truth against which to measure all the counterfeits the devil comes up with? What if it was actually the DEVIL who gave you that experience and who's now laughing because you're totally under his wing without knowing it? In that case you're spending you life spreading his lies, supporting a false Messiah who is misleading people away from Jesus to himself. To whom do you bow - Jesus or Sun Myung Moon? What if Sun Myung Moon is NOT the return of Jesus? If you follow God's word He gave us in the Bible - Moon definitely is NOT. But then, when you choose to put your own personal experience above the word of God - I can see how you can be so convinced.
>Such is the power of belief, as we are both well aware. People inevitably run their lives on the basis of what they believe.
Faith NOT based on FACT is EMPTY and BLIND faith! FAITH NOT FOUNDED ON THE WORD OF GOD - THE BIBLE - IS ...FUTILE AND DECEIVED!
If you study the DP, it takes its authority from the Bible. It quotes it all throughout (out of context, but nevertheless) ...why? To claim or assume its authority. Would you have accepted the DP if it HADN'T quoted the Bible?
You'd have dismissed it as lunatic hogwash right away, wouldn't you? If not ...you'd be like one of the poor souls who just accepted the words of their Hindu cult guru or Soko Asahara of Aum Shinri Kyo (the nerve gas cult that distributed sarin in Tokyo ...and killed dozens of people, hurting thousands more).
>Few, though, have the courage to admit that they don't really KNOW what they are talking about.
Courage or foolishness and arrogance?
>For the most part, this doesn't matter, because few of us are ever in a position to influence large numbers of people through our beliefs. You Ingo, however, have chosen put yourself in that position. You are going head to head with a man who knows that he is the Messiah.
...a man who THINKS he knows, in other words, who BELIEVES he is the Messiah. How many of those have been there in history? Soko Asahara also KNOWS that he is the Messiah. Did you know that he actually believes and claims it, too? He claims he also had an experience with God. So ...are you ready to follow him? What if you have a spiritual experience showing you that HE is actually the Messiah?
So what does to KNOW mean? To experience? There is intellectual, spiritual and empirical knowledge (knowledge gained through experience). Knowledge entails UNDERSTANDING, learning, scholarship, facts, wisdom, instruction, education, insight etc. (Webster's Thesaurus).
If you rely on your experience alone to gain knowledge (I know only what I can experience) ...you're in bad shape because you'll believe - or think you KNOW - a distorted view of reality based on the way your senses portray them to you. You'll believe an optical illusion like a fata morgana is actually true. You'll KNOW that there is this great lake in the desert.
If you rely on your intellect alone, you're also in bad shape, because that, also can be easily fooled. An intellectual model that is in itself consistent can fool MILLIONS of people ...even though its foundation, the premises upon which it is built, are false. Think about Communism. Just because there are many smart people who believe in it - does that mean it's true? The philosophy is very logical and consistent in itself and makes a lot of sense ...but what has been the historical result of its application because of false premises of the nature and value of man and God?
What is the result of an ideology that proclaims its self-proclaimed leader as the absolute authority? What if Moon really gains world dominion and enforces his views? Haven't you read that he wants to make extramarital sex a FEDERAL OFFENSE - punishable by death? Not that I agree with extramarital sex (I don't) ...but how would you feel if your nice, nephew, or sister-in-law was sentenced to death for having slept with his or her partner before marriage ...which is legal only when granted by Moon?
What a brave new world it would be, indeed!
People have devised methods to influence the human mind that you apparently don't even know about. ...and again, satan has his own ways of messing with our mind. That's why we need be Bible as the rock, the ultimate measure. People have tried to discredit and destroy it for over 4000 years, but it is the only book that has withstood the test of time!
>You'd better be very sure of your ground. For as it is written "fools rush in where angels fear tread".
I am VERY sure of my ground - it's backed by the Word of God! To me THAT supercedes experience. My warning to you is not of my own, it is from the Word of God:
Luke 21:8 He replied: "Watch out that you are not deceived . For many will come in my name, claiming, `I am he,' and, `The time is near.' Do not follow them.
Acts 1:11 (NIV) "Men of Galilee," they said, "why do you stand here looking into the sky? This same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen him go into heaven."
(THIS SAME JESUS - not somebody else with the same "spirit and mission"!!!!!!!!!)
Gal 1:8 But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let him be eternally condemned ! 9 As we have already said, so now I say again: If anybody is preaching to you a gospel other than what you accepted, let him be eternally condemned!
2Cor 11:3 But I am afraid that just as Eve was deceived by the serpent's cunning, your minds may somehow be led astray from your sincere and pure devotion to Christ. 4 For if someone comes to you and preaches a Jesus other than the Jesus we preached, or if you receive a different spirit from the one you received, or a different gospel from the one you accepted, you put up with it easily enough.
13 For such men are false apostles, deceitful workmen, masquerading as apostles of Christ. 14 And no wonder, for Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light. 15 It is not surprising, then, if his servants masquerade as servants of righteousness. Their end will be what their actions deserve.
What if the DP - or your personal experience - contradicts the word of God? To what authority do you hold?
According to the Bible, Jesus is sufficient. We do not need to - and can not - earn our salvation (as in pay indemnity for our ancestors). Please read the book of Hebrews some time.
Heb 7:25 Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them. 26 Such a high priest meets our need--one who is holy, blameless, pure, set apart from sinners, exalted above the heavens. 27 Unlike the other high priests, he does not need to offer sacrifices day after day, first for his own sins, and then for the sins of the people. He sacrificed for their sins once for all when he offered himself. 28 For the law appoints as high priests men who are weak; but the oath, which came after the law, appointed the Son, who has been made perfect forever.
Heb 9:19 When Moses had proclaimed every commandment of the law to all the people, he took the blood of calves, together with water, scarlet wool and branches of hyssop, and sprinkled the scroll and all the people. 20 He said, "This is the blood of the covenant, which God has commanded you to keep." 21 In the same way, he sprinkled with the blood both the tabernacle and everything used in its ceremonies. 22 In fact, the law requires that nearly everything be cleansed with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness. 23 It was necessary, then, for the copies of the heavenly things to be purified with these sacrifices, but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these. 24 For Christ did not enter a man-made sanctuary that was only a copy of the true one; he entered heaven itself, now to appear for us in God's presence. 25 Nor did he enter heaven to offer himself again and again, the way the high priest enters the Most Holy Place every year with blood that is not his own. 26 Then Christ would have had to suffer many times since the creation of the world. But now he has appeared once for all at the end of the ages to do away with sin by the sacrifice of himself.
AND, LAST BUT NOT LEAST, IF YOU WANT TO TALK EXPERIENCE:
The moment I repented for my sins and accepted Jesus Christ as my ONLY Lord and savior - while selling roses on a street corner in South Chicago Heights after 2 days of Bible study and earnest prayer - I saw a spiritual hand that had induced fear and guilt into me all these years, being wiped away. SWOOSH! God had opened my eyes through the holy spirit and I was able to see that I had been deceived. I was filled with joy and excitement. A song came to me that I play until this very day (I even wrote it down: "Jesus is my Lord").
So I DO have experience that allows me to be sure that Moon is a false Messiah, that I had been deceived - but unlike you I do not make that the last instance of authority. The Word of God is ...over all experience! That's why I continued to study and pray ...and I found out more and more what an incredible lie and satanic deception the Divine Principle, Unification Church and Mr. Moon are. I praise God for liberating me! I give you the words of advice a very spiritual black preacher gave me when I talked to her about my beliefs while being in the movement: RUN! RUN ...WHILE YOU STILL CAN!!! IT'S FROM THE DEVIL!!!
While you are deceived, you are blinded and your mind cannot understand the word of God that could liberate you, but my prayer for you and all others in your group and others like it is that God may break the chains of your bondage as he did for me and allow you to know the truth that will set you free!
To me, the most convincing proof for the truth of the Bible, especially the Gospel and the reality of spiritual warfare, is the existence and power of spiritual counterfeits like the one you are adhering to. The fact that so many are feverishly trying to copy and claim the value of what was already there is a strong indication that the true original exists and is extremely valuable.