In a way God fears man, and Satan fears man also because of man’s ability to betray. God is absolute good, and He never changes His position; Satan is absolute evil and he never changes his position either. In this respect God and Satan are similar. However, man is a mixture of good and evil. Man stands between God and Satan and has the ability to change. Therefore, man is unpredictable. One day a man may profess his untiring faith in God and desire to serve Him; and the next day the same man may curse God, unite with Satan and become his slave.
Since God did not know how man would respond to His providence for the Messiah, He had no choice but to predict two contradictory results dual prophecies, each possible depending on man’s actions. Thus the faith of man was the factor determining which one of the two prophecies would be fulfilled:
In the case of Jesus, if the chosen people of Israel demonstrated faith and united with him, then he would be accepted. The full realization of the prophecy of the Lord of glory would result.
On the other hand, if the people rejected the Messiah when he came, inevitably the second prophecy, that of the suffering Christ, would be fulfilled. And history shows that the chosen people took the second way. Therefore, the prophecy of the suffering Lord became reality instead of the prophecy of the Lord of glory. Thus the crucifixion and the story of the suffering Christ became the course of history.
Since the prophecy of the suffering Christ became fact in the time of Jesus, the prophecy of the Lord of glory has been left unfulfilled. And this is the prophecy which will be fulfilled at the time of the Lord of the Second Advent.
I would like to also observe that the Bible does not provide much record of the life of Jesus prior to his public ministry, except for the story of his birth and a few accounts of his childhood. Haven’t you ever wondered why?
For 30 years Jesus lived in great rejection and humiliation. There were many events and circumstances which grieved and agonized Jesus. He was a truly misunderstood person – in his own society and even among his own family. Nobody, absolutely nobody, treated him as the Son of God. He was not even accorded the common respect due to any man. His society ridiculed him. God’s heart was very deeply grieved by Jesus’ life. If I revealed just a glimpse of some of the situations of heartbreak and sorrow in the life of Jesus, that obscure figure, the man of Nazareth, you would not only be shocked and stunned, but you would burst into tears of sorrow.
God did not wish mankind to know the tragedy, the heart breaking reality of the humiliation of Jesus Christ. The death of Jesus was neither his will nor his fault. The death of Jesus was murder, and his body was taken by Satan. Our salvation in Christianity comes not from the cross but from the resurrection. Without the resurrection, Christianity has no power The crucifixion itself was a criminal act of faithlessness. However, the resurrected Jesus brought new hope, new forgiveness, and a new power of salvation. Therefore, when we place our faith in Jesus Christ of resurrection and unite with him, our salvation comes.
Please ask seriously in your prayers for a final answer on these matters. Ask either Jesus Christ or God Himself. If Jesus had lived and fulfilled his primary mission of bringing the Kingdom of God on earth, Christianity would never have been what it is today. The purpose of Jesus’ coming was for the salvation of the world. The Jewish people were to be God’s instruments. However, salvation was not intended only for God’s chosen people. For every soul upon the face of the earth, Jesus is the savior. He is the savior of all mankind. Since Jesus left his mission uncompleted, he also left us the promise of his Second Coming.
Then let us examine when the end of the world will come. This is very important to us. The gospel says that in the last days God will separate the sheep from the goats. What is the difference between these two kinds of animals? Sheep recognize their master, the shepherd, while goats do not follow a shepherd. Today you know that our world is divided into two opposing camps. One is the democratic world, the other is the communist world. Our free world says, “There is a God.” We accept our shepherd. The communist world says, “God does not exist.?’ They deny their master. Thus the free world may be symbolized by sheep, and the communist world by goats. At the time of the formation of these two conflicting ideological worlds we can know we have come to the end of the world.
How will the Lord of the Second Advent come? Our position as Christians exactly parallels the position of the elders, scribes, and priests at the time of Jesus. In those days, the people were waiting for Elijah and the Messiah to arrive in the clouds of heaven. Why did the people think this way? Why did they hold this kind of belief?
They were simply following the Bible prophecy written down in Daniel 7:13:
‘I saw in the night visions, and behold, with the clouds of heaven there came one like a son of man, and he came to the Ancient of Days and was presented before him.’
Because of the great prophet Daniel, the people of Israel had every reason to expect the arrival of the Messiah with the clouds of heaven. Christians are expecting the arrival of the Lord of the Second Advent in the same way today, from the clouds of heaven.
John said, ‘. . . many deceivers have gone out into the world, men who will not acknowledge the coming of Jesus Christ in the flesh; such a one is the deceiver and the antichrist.’ (II John 7)
The Bible says that many people were denying the appearance of Jesus Christ in the flesh. And John condemned those people as the antichrist. But let us not forget the Old Testament prophecy of the coming of the Son of God in the clouds of heaven. Unless we know the whole truth, we, like the people of Jesus’ time, become victims of the words of the Bible.
Then, may I ask, what would you do if the Lord returned to earth not in the clouds but as a man in the flesh? What would you do? I am telling you, the Lord of the Second Advent will in fact appear as a Son of Man with flesh and bones. The first thing you may want to say is, “Reverend Moon, you are a heretic.”
(from the book: God’s Will and the World by Reverend Dr. Sun Myung Moon)