May 03, 2024

Father, Forgive Them - Morning Devotion on May 3, 2024

Father, Forgive Them

Jesus said, "Father; forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing."

Luke 23:34

Jesus Christ has endured the pain and has walked this path full of grievance and suffering for 6,000 years until now in order to find us, and he has put his life at stake and walked the road of the cross. We should hold onto Jesus! Even when he was facing death on the cross, which put an end to the thirty years of his life, he earnestly appealed to God, "Oh Father, forgive them."

Jesus Is Searching for Us in This Way
May 20, 1956

The path of Jesus suffering on the cross was the same path of tribulations that God himself walked. In such a situation of trial and tribulation Jesus desperately prayed, "Please forgive them for they know not what they do." Even in the place of death, he forgave Rome and the group of people who opposed him, waiting for victory in the future. Therefore, the life of Jesus did not end at the age of 33. With God's help, Christianity inherited his spirit.

The Path for America and Humanity in the Last Days
January 22, 2000

Jesus Christ did not hold grudges against anyone when he stood before the Israelite people, even when he was dying on the cross. The reason is that he knew that by practicing this way the door to the salvation of the world would open, even though it might come after his death.

As he suffered immeasurable agony Jesus could have been resentful towards the Israelite people. Instead, what Jesus felt from the people who opposed him was the toil of God, who had led the dispensation for 4,000 long years. When he was dying on the cross, he could have appealed to heaven, calling judgment upon the Israelite people who had put him to the cross. Instead, he agonized over the history of the dispensation during which God had greatly exerted himself, and seeing how God forgave even the people who opposed those whom he had sent, Jesus had the magnanimity to forgive them. Even though there might have been times in history when those who opposed God avoided judgment and rejoiced, the reason that God did not judge them was not because they themselves were valuable, but because he was able to generate magnanimity by looking at the prophets who had forgiven them. In this way with the heart of sorrow on behalf of heaven, Jesus forgave them as representing all of history and God's dispensation.

Let Us Become People Who Participate in the Glory of the Lord
June 16, 1957

If Jesus, as he hung dying on the cross, had held any feelings of malice toward his enemy, God's providence would have been turned completely upside-down. It is because Jesus overcame death with a heart of praying for and loving his enemies that Satan surrendered in that instance.

World Unification Will Be Accomplished by True Love

February 10, 2000

Last week was an incredible week. I'm sure you heard about it. During this past week, I was dragged into the courtroom under judicial "gun point.' and all kinds of fundamental questions were asked of me, including whether I am the Messiah. What is the difference between the situation 2,000 years ago and the one today? The day after Jesus was questioned, he was crucified. However, God has worked for 2,000 years to establish the foundation of democracy grounded, on religious freedom. Therefore, even after my recent interrogation I am able to come to Belvedere this morning and give this sermon to you.

As I sat in that hostile courtroom last week, there were many different attitudes that I could have chosen to adopt. On the one hand I could have been thinking, "God, I wish you would bring down fire and brimstone on this judge's head! And I don't like those lawyers at all; kick them out!" I might have thought in such a fashion, but I certainly did not. On the contrary, I practiced God's principle in that extremely hostile judicial environment, and I had compassion on my enemies and forgave them. Inside, I was thinking, "God, please forgive them because they don't know what they are doing. Eventually the time will come when they will understand who I am."

During the tax trial the prosecutor, Mr. Flumenbaum, was incredibly vicious toward me. It's natural to have an urge to knock down such a person. Imagine Mother's feelings during all this; she was suffering so much for my sake, and here was Mr. Flumenbaum behaving in such a hateful way, not knowing me at all. Mother couldn't restrain her feelings and kept protesting to me. However, I always comforted her and said, "Mother, I understand how you feel, but please forgive him."

The Road of God's Will
May 30, 1982

However, Jesus did not come for his own sake. First, he came for the sake of history for the sake of the Jewish faith and the Israelite people. He came for the sake of the disciples who were to follow him. On a larger scale, he came for the sake of the people, the nation, the world, and the universe. This is how he lived his life. Even his death was not for his own sake.

...With a heart of compassion, even in the moment of death on the cross, he prayed for the sake of the Jewish people who betrayed him, the disciples, and humanity who betrayed him. Because he was a man of sorrow, he could become their friend. He could pray for the sake of the people who opposed him and the enemies who struck him. Such a thing had never even been heard of in the 4,000 years of human history. This was the work of universal adventure done to dismantle the wall of sin rooted deeply in heaven and earth.

The Providence of God and the Nature of the Adventure that Transcends Reality
December 2, 1956

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