The Jesus of The Holy Spirit Association for the Unification of World Christianity
While most cults distort the true nature and work of Jesus and His mission, they at least acknowledge that He completed His mission successfully. Rev. Sun Myung Moon, the founder and leader of the Unification Church, however, disagrees. Jesus' death, in Unification theology, is explained as an error.
"Christians have traditionally believed that Jesus' death on the cross was predestined as the original plan of God. No, it was not! It was a grievous error to crucify Jesus Christ. Death on the cross was not the mission that God had originally intended for Jesus, his Son" (Outline of The Principle: Level 4, pp. 79, 81).
If Jesus death was not the plan of God, what was the plan?
As Moon teaches, "He [Jesus] came to erect the Kingdom of God on earth, but instead he had to caution his disciples even to keep his identity a secret because people did not accept his legitimacy as the Messiah, and he therefore lacked the power to be the King of kings" (God's Warning to the World: Rev. Moon's Message from Prison, p. 122).
Not only did Jesus fail to become the King of kings, according to Moon, he also failed to raise the perfect family. In a section of Moon's scripture, the Divine Principle, under the subheading, The Purpose of Jesus' Coming as the Messiah, is found this insightful information.
Jesus main purpose was to make man perfect, which was the original intent of God in the Garden of Eden. Once man has achieved earthly perfection, he "becomes one body with God, possesses deity, and cannot commit sins. This man is not in need of redemption or of a savior, nor does he need the life or prayer and faith required by fallen men, because he is without original sin. Such a man, being himself without original sin, comes to multiply children of goodness without sin; in consequence, his children are not in need of a savior for the redemption of their sins" (pp. 140-141).
Since Jesus, according to Moon, was not supposed to die, and since He was sinless and only a sinless man can reproduce sinless children, it has been taught that Jesus' ultimate purpose was to be married and begin the perfect family! This is only one of the many unique insights about Jesus which Moon has taught.
Some may wonder from where Moon received these new doctrinal insights. For such skeptics, he has a simple answer. In speaking of his authority to teach such doctrines he explains, "I spoke with Jesus Christ in the spirit world. And I spoke also with John the Baptist. This is my authority" (God's Warning to the World, p. 128).
Because Jesus failed to get married and produce children, as well as having been mistakenly crucified, it may be asked was anything salvageable in such a mismanaged life?
Fortunately, as Moon teaches, some benefit did come from Jesus' death. "By resurrecting the crucified Jesus, God opened up a way of spiritual salvation, a way to a realm free from satanic invasion" (Outline of The Principle, p. 82, emphasis added). This spiritual salvation is not as good as it sounds, however.
"Only man's spirit can attain salvation. Our body still awaits redemption. There is no one who has been cleansed of original sin. It is for this reason that the Messiah must appear again on earth, to liquidate our sins completely and establish the Kingdom of Heaven, fulfilling God's Purpose for the Creation" (Ibid, pp. 82-83).
This second coming will provide God with another chance to give man physical salvation, in addition to spiritual salvation. As Moon explains, "Thus Jesus died on the cross, not to fulfill his own ultimate hope, not because of God's original plan, but by the will of sinful people. Christ was destined to return from that moment on. He will return to consummate his mission on earth. Mankind must await his second coming for the complete salvation of the world" (God's Warning to the World, p. 132).
Not only has Moon proclaimed heretical doctrines about Jesus' mission, he has also espoused erroneous theology concerning the Second Coming.
Moon continues by stating, "In like manner, although many Christians up to the present have believed that Jesus would come on the clouds, there are no grounds to deny the possibility of the Lord being born in the flesh on the earth at the Second Advent the numerous biblical records concerning the Second Advent from the viewpoint that the Lord might come on the earth by being born in the flesh" (Divine Principle, pp. 500-501).
After laying the above foundation, Moon, on several occasions, strongly implied that was this Lord of the Second Advent, born in the flesh, come to fulfill Jesus failed mission. Then last year, he announced to his followers that he is "the Savior, the Lord of the Second advent, the Messiah" (Today's World, September 1992, pp. 20-21).
According to the Unification Church, Jesus was to get married and raise the perfect family but instead failed in His mission by getting Himself crucified. Is this the Jesus of the Bible?