Unification News for November 2001
Muslim, Christian, Jew; One Family of God
This is from an address to a gathering of ministers at the Ohio Family Church, Columbus, Ohio, October 6, 2001
by Rev. Michael Jenkins
We just thank God we are in a time of transition in American history, yet this transition gives us an opportunity to turn to God. A turning to God is going on all across this nation. I was there on Sept. 11 in NYC. I was at 43rd St. when the attack occurred. The next night I was down at Ground Zero. The city, nation and world struggled at that moment. Eighty-two nations had representatives at the WTC and lost their sons and daughters—including 1400 Muslims.
We were preparing at that time for MSG. We had been to 400-500 churches throughout the NYC area. We continued to go and all of these churches lost many loved ones at the WTC. There's no church I went to that didn't have a loss. Brooklyn, Bronx, Manhattan. The chairman of Canaan Baptist church and I became very close. Mrs. Hall of that church died and left a 12 year-old boy without any parents. The little boy was running around the church that day screaming and yelling when he realized his mommy would never come home. They also lost one of the seniors at that church.
I became a chaplain with the Mayor's office. We went down many nights to Ground Zero, they needed a lot of spiritual support. Never have I seen in the history of America where clergy and religious leaders have such value, such importance. There is no politician that can solve these problems.
Yes, we pray for our president. We're grateful for his leadership but bombing will not solve this problem. We do believe that measures are necessary to chase and track down the criminals and bring them to justice. We're not against using the proper methods to bring those criminals to justice, that's not an issue. We're not pacifists—we are people of God and people of God must have ways and means to defend themselves.
However, if we don't understand the time we facing with America, we will fail as a nation. We represent Christianity. Our nation is on the cross. America is on the cross. With the love of Jesus, we have the power to embrace Islam. We are all the children of Abraham. How can the three sons of Abraham—the Jewish son, the Muslim son and the Christian son—become one again? I'm here to tell you that Jesus has all power. If we do not live according to the gospel of Jesus Christ, we actually do not manifest Jesus in our churches, our cities, and our communities. While it was Christians who planted the seed of Christian love and spirit in this nation and founded this nation, it was those same Christians that also chased Roger Williams out of Massachusetts, ruling that he was a heretic.
It was those same Christians who lost the love of God and would turn that into a justification for slavery in this nation. Our founding father Thomas Jefferson said, "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal." Yet that very man who let God speak through him also had slaves. He violated the very truth which he spoke.
Therefore I come to tell you that if you're a pastor, a religious leader, if you speak the truth, you're doing right for the word of God has the power to change a man's soul. And only the word of God can edify, strengthen and purify man. Man was created by the word and with the word man shall be saved. Man shall be guided by the word.
The pastor is the only one, the religious leader is the only one that can bring faith on the earth in this time. No political leader, no civic or community leader, no social worker, no other kind of academic leader or educator or business leader or professional people can do what is necessary right now. Only religious leaders can do what is necessary right now.
I saw the suffering and despair. I went down into Ground Zero many times. I prayed with crying policemen, I prayed with officers with Irish names, Jewish names, Christian names, all different races and nationalities. We are a nation of ALL God's people.
Man did not create this nation. No man could conceive a nation that had fundamental respect for all races, because man in his sin could not manifest true love of God until he meets his lord and savior and becomes completely purified. Even after our salvation, we still have purification to do. We are not finished simply by being saved. Salvation opens the gate where can relate with God. We can come into a relationship with God that was blocked by sin. We could not stand as a child of God without salvation.
However, even though that gate and that child relationship with God was opened through our lord and savior Jesus Christ, that does not mean that we have become a full embodiment of God. Unless we repent, humble ourselves, purify ourselves and become one with God in heart, unless we really atone for the path of our ancestors' history, we cannot stand as God's true sons and daughters.
At the WTC, officers were working seven days a week, 14 hours a day. Incredible exhaustion set in. There was a tremendous feeling of hope for the first week, hope to find survivors. Yet after the first day there was not one. It was a trauma zone and yet I testify that it's also a holy place, a place of sacrifice. While I was there, one officer came up to me and said, "Pastor, I have a question. I want to share something in my heart." He said, "Is it a sin to pray that all Muslims will be killed by God?" This is a police officer with a gun. He was extremely exhausted. He was shaking he was so tired.
I had to pastor him to understand that we are all brothers, that God loves everybody, and that the attack on the WTC was not from the Muslim faith or representatives of the faithful believers of the religion of Islam. The terrorists were not of the faithful. The Qur'an teaches very clearly that thou shalt not commit suicide, it's a sin against God. Therefore the suicide bombers completely had to sever their relationship with God to do what they did. They were not representing God and they did not represent Islam.
Our religious leaders must come together and respond. How do we respond? As Jesus would respond on the cross. We must be aggressive in our spiritual life and fellowship together, embrace one another, cross racial lines, denominational lines, religious lines, and become what Jesus prayed for. That all may be one.
Some sense that God left America, but I'm here to tell you that God has come back! Over the last 30 years, a reversal has occurred. When I was in NY in the early 70's there was looting and violence all over the city. You couldn't walk through the Bronx safely. Yet I have lived in Harlem for the last 40 days. That's why we could convene our rally there when we postponed the MSG Blessing. We moved there for our prayer breakfast where Muslims, Christians and Jews could come together and express their common faith in our one God. There is only one God, and he is the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. If you don't understand that He is also the God of Islam, you're wrong. You're wrong, because you don't understand the law of God. "In my Father's house there are many mansions."
Jesus was put on the cross, and much of that cross "work" was in that He had the power to love. He had the power to love His enemy. "Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do." Do we manifest love now? How can we manifest this love? We cannot manifest this love simply in prayers and just embracing one another. We must aggressively seek to break down those walls.
That's why the American Clergy Leadership Conference was born. It's formed a movement that's all denominations and all races, and also embraces Islam, Buddhism and all the religions. The core of the ACLC is 12,000 Christian clergy. What Father Moon has asked us to do is to transcend all the barriers by affirming first our family in God.
God created man in His image—male and female He created them. God created man and woman in the image of God. To fully manifest God's image and love, the parental force of God's love must come through His image. Therefore I'm asking every one of those 12,000 pastors to have their marriages blessed. We're going to do that on March or April of next spring—it was what we were planning for Sept. 22.
From there we want every pastor to strengthen and edify every marriage in their congregation. Do you believe in the power of the Holy Spirit? Do you believe in the power of God as you pull God down into your life. Do you believe in the power of God to solve problems in the church? Do you believe in the power of Jesus to solve the problems in the marriages in our churches? Then why are your marriages breaking down? If you believe in it, pastors, then why can you not shut down divorce in your congregation? Why can you not shut down adultery in your congregation?
Adultery is a sin before God and it will destroy any marriage. No marriage can stand in violation of the law of God. The fundamental root of all the problems that link to marital problems is the fact that man has not kept the Ten Commandments—he has not kept his love for God and the love for mankind that Jesus taught us.
Marital infidelity is the root of all the fundamental problems that link to breakdown. It is the Garden of Eden story. As Father Moon traveled through the 50 state tour, he made it very clear that God gave him a revelation from our lord and savior Jesus Christ. And that revelation was that there was more to the Garden story than meets the eye. That revelation was that Adam and Eve, in their disobedience to God, separated from God and that created sin. Lucifer came upon Eve and tricked her with the word, twisting God's word, telling her disobeying God was all right. However I'm here to tell you that Adam and Eve's sin was more than simply eating a fruit. Jesus said in Matthew, "It is not that which goes into the mouth that defiles a man." They did not eat some literal fruit. What Adam and Eve did in the Garden of Eden—they violated the most fundamental thing that was most sacred to God. They went outside of the law of God and created a love relationship that was premature, immature, in violation of God. Therefore, adultery became a sin of the Old Testament. The highest and most serious sin of the Old Testament, beyond murder—because the first sin was not murder, it was adultery.
I'm here to tell you that's why the Jewish law would state that a man and a woman who had any kind of adulterous relationship should be taken out and stoned to death. Jesus came and brought a higher law. The law of love. He stood before the prostitute and the adulterous generation and said "I am the way, the truth, and the life. Come unto me, you who are heavy burdened, and I will give you rest." He covered their sin, cleansed their sin, and caused them to move into a new covenant with God.
But adultery occurred at the foundation of humanity at the time of Adam and Eve. They committed an adulterous act. That's why we must really cleanse the church right now.
Pastors, do you think Jesus wants man and woman to separate? What is His work? What is the word of God regarding marriage? Matthew 19:4-6 says "If God ordaineth that a man will leave his father and mother and cleave unto his wife, they will become one flesh. Therefore what God hath joined together, let no man put asunder." Divorce is not Jesus' will. From your pulpits be aflame with the word, preach the word—"what God hath joined together, let no man put asunder." We're coming into an age where Jesus' words are going to become real. That's the meaning of the Blessing and the holy convocation we were going to have on September 22. We believe in the power of the magnificent Holy Spirit. How many of you believe we're living in the time of the return of Christ?
Yes, the majority of our Christian pastors and leaders know that the hour is at hand. I have come to reveal to you now that we are absolutely standing on the crossroads of human history, and the only leaders that can lead this nation to reconcile—Muslim, Jewish, and Christian—and end the resentment—and the fertile soil of resentment that's growing these evil forces—is the love of Jesus manifested at this time.
We have to love one another. Yet within our Christian denominations, we have such bitter judgment toward one another. We don't like the Methodists, because we don't like their method. We don't like the Presbyterians because we'd rather see a bishop that have a council of Presbyters. We don't like the Pentecostals because we don't like speaking in tongues. We don't like the Catholics because we're not sure that we can really accept the fact that they honor Mary so much. We don't like the Episcopalians because we don't like ... We don't like this, we don't like that.
That's not Jesus! That's why one of the reasons they persecuted Jesus was that he could honor and love all people. One of the testimonies Jesus gave was the testimony of the Samaritan. He praised the Samaritan who was not even a Jew. The Jewish people thought, "How can he be praising a non-Jew? He's not even a chosen person, and Jesus is lifting him up?" However, I've come to tell you Jesus had no barriers, no boundaries, no idea of blockage.
There's no barrier between Christian, Islam and Hebraism if we have God's love. If we manifest the love of God that's so powerful we truly see God is in everybody. We believe they will all come through the gate of salvation through Jesus, but they won't even make it to the gate if you don't love them. And if you think discriminatorily towards everybody, you're not with Jesus. Jesus is not with you. You may be saved, but I'm telling you your place at the banquet table will not be up front—it'll be clear in the back.
That’s our response as the American Clergy Leadership Conference? We do not advocate war. War will not solve this problem. Police actions and military actions to capture the criminals are all right—as long as we don't allow that to spill into a war, because a war will not solve the problem. The problem is not about conflicts among nations. The problem is that we as a Christian nation have not really loved one another. White people in this nation have not really come straight up with what we did in this nation's history and repair it with reparations.
We're not talking politics or economics here, we're talking love. Reparations means that you get down on your hands and knees and pray to God that God will bless you, then you take that blessing to your violated brother and give it to him. America's history is a bitter, bitter, bitter history. That's why we can't talk about the unity that is necessary to heal this world before we heal this nation.
The rallies and military actions can appear to bring unity. People start waving the flags. But I guarantee that if we don't start bringing the clergy to the front proclaiming the message that we are one and bring down the Holy Spirit, eventually our flag-waving will recede, and we will go back into our divided communities. We will have the fertile soil that breeds the kind of resentment that hates America. It will continue not only offshore, but it will continue in our cities, because it's already there.
The power of Jesus can heal this nation. The power of Blessed marriage can heal the community. We can heal our families. Children coming out of marriages that are full of love, not confusion, not animosity between man and woman that are trying to convince the children that the other one's wrong—but a love that has said, "Oh, forgive me my child, for I have sinned. Forgive me lord, for I have sinned. I didn't understand your mother. I was too harsh, too narrow, too judgmental."
Husbands have a tendency to think they're right. Mothers too. How about we just repent. Let God be right. Then the children will learn with that, won't they? Children growing up in Blessed marriages have the power to heal the community. The only institution that can lead this way is the church right now.
So, pastors, we praise God that you had the courage to come here this day. We want to enlist you in the holy campaign of God, to bring love to every church. To bring a spirit of love that will break down every barrier between Islam, Christianity and Judaism. I want everyone to go to the Muslim mosque and love them. Bring a cushion and a donation to the mosque, because are we not the sons of Abraham? We are one and Jesus is coming again and is going to make us all one.
I'd like to read from Joel 2:15. "Blow the trumpet in Zion, sanctify a fast, call a solemn assembly, gather the people, sanctify the congregation, assemble the elders, gather the children and those that suck breasts, let the bridegroom go forth out of his chamber, and his bride out of her closet. Let the priests, the ministers of the Lord weep, between the porch and the altar, and let them say 'spare thy people oh Lord, and give not thine inheritance to reproach, and that the heavens should rule over them.'"
Let the people sanctify themselves at this time. Dr. King would tell us what to do in this situation. It's from his speech, Loving Your Enemies—From Strength to Love. "Returning hate for hate multiplies hate. Darkness cannot drive out darkness, only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that. Hate multiplies hate, violence multiplies violence, toughness multiplies toughness in a descending spiritual destruction."
I pray that we will mark this day here in Ohio as a day that the march of love began across this nation. I'm very grateful to all the pastors here and we pray that God will abundantly bless your ministries. We believe in you. Please understand you are the prophets of this second Israel, this Christian nation of America that's big enough to also say it's a nation of Muslims, a nation of Jews, a nation of all God's people.
You are the prophets of this new Israel. Do not mince the words of God. Preach about adultery, and adultery will disappear from your church. Preach about divorce, and what Jesus said, that man must not separate, and divorce will be received in your church. Preach about what's right, and don't water down the word of God.
And one other thing—you have to live it. If you've got something going on the side, you will not be able to bring healing and restoration to your congregation. Therefore, before preaching about adultery, you must first cleanse yourself of all adultery. And if you are guilty of that sin, you must confess to your spouse and take it before the Lord in prayer. Once you cleanse yourself, then you can preach God as a forgiving God. He will completely forgive whatever sin you've committed.
America can change at this moment. America is a nation that can change. I believe it will change. Pastors, we praise God for you. Without your word going forth across this nation, this nation will not be able to decide whether it goes with God or with man. Was it not true in the Bible that how the nation of Israel dealt with the prophets determined whether they would be blessed or whether they would decline? How can the people have faith if there is no preaching?
I ask you all to preach against adultery, to preach what Jesus said—that all may be one—to preach against divorce. And watch divorce decline, watch love fill every family, and—that we all may be one—watch the love of God start to bring Muslim, Christian and Jew into one family of God.
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