“America and God’s Will” Washington Monument Speech (1976)
On September 18, 1976 Rev. Sun Myung Moon delivered the following United States Bicentennial speech entitled “America and God’s Will” at the Washington Monument in Washington, D.C. before an audience of 300,000 people.
Honorable Citizens of the United States and world delegates: I would like to express my heartfelt thanks and appreciation to all of you for “Meeting us at the Monument.” Tonight we are celebrating America’s Bicentennial in the Name of God. For you and me, this is an historical moment.
Tonight I would like to speak on the subject “America and God’s Will.”
God is eternal, unchanging, unique and absolute. If those are the qualities of God, His purpose of creation must also be eternal, unchanging and absolute. In the beginning, God’s ideal was to create one world of unity and harmony.
Today, however, out world has no unity or harmony. Instead there is much division, disharmony, confusion and chaos. Individually, our minds are separated from our bodies, and our families, races, nations and our world are torn apart. This reality is in total contradiction to God’s original intention. Clearly something is fundamentally wrong.
Victory over Evil
Religion has an explanation. It says that this worldwide division is the result of our first ancestors’ rebellion against God, the Fall of Man.
In order to save fallen man, God sent the Messiah. His purpose was to restore man to his original state before the Fall. Therefore, Salvation is the same as Restoration.
The Fall of Man brought about this fallen world. Disobeying God’s Word, man rebelled against Him. This put him in the position to be overpowered by Satan’s lies. And so, finally man united with Satan, receiving Satan’s personality and love instead of God’s personality and love.
To be restored as an original man, we must reverse the process of the Fall. This time we must separate ourselves from Satan, reach out to God whom we have lost, and obey His Word. In this way we can receive God’s personality and His love.
Selfishness is Unhappiness
God is supremely selfless and supremely public minded; whereas Satan is absolutely self-centered and only out for himself.
God’s formula to restore man is for us to become God-like. This means that we must become completely selfless and public minded. Each of us must become a person who is able to sacrifice himself for the sake of others.
Such a selfless and public minded person will prosper because he is the image of God. The selfish, self-centered person will decline because he is the opposite of God. This is God’s rule.
Human history has been a history of struggle, a history of war. It has been almost like a tug-of-war between God and Satan with man as the prize. Good and Evil have been struggling to win man to their respective sides.
Because human history started with the Fall, Evil got a head start. Therefore, in history the evil side has always taken the aggressive and offensive position. Good has been passive and defensive; yet, God is on the side of Good. In the end, the good side always wins the victory. The good side is always the underdog; yet, it comes out victorious and expands.
For example, during World War I and World War II, the evil sides attacked first, yet they were the ones to be defeated. Today, there is much talk about World War III. This time Evil, represented by the Communist nations, is challenging the free world, provoking conflicts and war everywhere. But again based on God’s formula, the ultimate victory will surely be on the side of God.
Has the Messiah Completed His Work?
There is another formula in God’s Work of Restoration. Before God sends the Messiah to restore man, He always prepares a central religion and a chosen nation as the foundation to receive the Messiah.
According to this formula, God established Judaism as the first central religion, and Israel as the first chosen nation. Upon this base, God sent Jesus Christ as the Messiah. His hope was that the chosen nation and religion become one with Jesus to establish the Kingdom of God on earth and restore the world to God.
For this purpose, God prepared Judaism and Israel for nearly 4,000 Biblical years. If they had recognized Jesus Christ as the Messiah and worked with Him in a spirit of sacrifice, He would not only have been successful in Israel, but also would have gone on to unite all the Arab nations and Asia, linking the East and West. By unifying the world under the sovereignty of God, He would have established the Kingdom of God on earth at that time.
Israel and Judaism, however, did not fully realize their responsibility. Jesus was not accepted as the Messiah, and finally was crucified on the cross. Thus, God’s Kingdom remained unfulfilled. However, Jesus opened the way to spiritual salvation and started Christianity which is spiritually in the position of the Second Israel.
A Quick historical Glimpse
The early Christians marched towards Rome only to find terrible persecution. For 400 years the blood of many martyrs was spilled. Their sacrifice atoned the for loss of 4,000 years of God’s preparation for the Messiah. The Christians finally triumphed in Rome and Christianity became the state religion. Thus Rome came to occupy the position of the Second Israel physically and receive the blessing of God.
At that time God expected the Papacy and Rome to completely unite and unselfishly build the unified world left unaccomplished at the time of Jesus.
However, the Papacy also did not realize the significance of its mission and often used its power for its own glory. There was abuse and corruption in the Church and it departed from the will and expectation of God. The dignity of the Papacy fell.
In reaction, humanism arose, and Protestantism called for reformation of the Church. Instead of heeding the call, the Papacy and the Roman authorities increased their persecution of the reformers.
During that period, it was no coincidence that Henry VIII, King of England, also revolted against Roman Catholicism and, enacting a new law through Parliament, founded the Anglican Church. This was actually a golden opportunity for Great Britain to join the Protestant movement of Europe and bring about a new hope for the advancement of God’s will.
At that time, the British Empire became the greatest in the world, inspiring the famous saying, “The sun never sets on the British Empire.” This extraordinary blessing was not just for England, but was for the advancement of God’s Kingdom. If Britain had understood God’s Will, she would have supported the Puritan and Protestant movements and tackled her God-given task of world restoration. Through that she could actually have built a United Kingdom of God, transcending all national barriers.
However, Britain persecuted the Puritans, and was apathetic to the Protestants. These persecuted people had to look for a land of hope. They were united by a common destiny. Transcending race and national barriers and fleeing from persecution, they came to the new world, the American continent. Here they established an independent Protestant nation. This is the providential background of the birth of America.
America: God’s New Nation
Today, America and Christianity together must take up the sacred task of world restoration. America must unite the cultures of the West and the East, as well as the Middle East, and create one great unified culture, ultimately fulfilling the mission of establishing the Kingdom of God on Earth.
Judaism was God’s first central religion, and Christianity was the second. The Unification Church is the third, coming with the new revelation that will fulfill the final chapter of God’s Providence. These central religions must unite in America and reach out to unite religions of the world
Judaism, centered upon the Old Testament, was the first work of God and is in an elder brother’s position. Christianity, centered upon the New Testament, is in the position of the second brother. The Unification Church, through which God has given a new revelation, the Completed testament, is in the position of the youngest brother.
Israel, the United States and Korea are Brothers
These three religions are indeed three brothers in the Providence of God. Then Israel, the United States and Korea, the nations where theses three religions are based must also be brothers. Because these three nations have a common destiny representing God’s side, the Communist bloc as Satan’s representative is trying to isolate and destroy them at the UN
Therefore these three brother nations must join hands in a unified effort to restore the United nations to its original purpose and function. They must contribute internally to the unification of world religions and eternally to the unification of the world itself.
Have you heard about “Godism”?
“One World Under God” is the unchanging, eternal and absolute desire of God. This goal will be realized; yet, in order to accomplish this goal, the unity of religions is the first and essential task. When all men worship one God as Father, accept one Messiah and uphold one Godism, an absolutely God-centered way of life, then the dwelling of God will be with men. It will be only a matter of time to see the Kingdom of God here on earth.
The United States of America, transcending race and nationality, is already a model of the unified world. She must realize that the abundant blessings which God has been pouring upon this land are not just for America, but are for the children of God throughout the world. Upon the foundation of world Christianity, America must exercise her responsibility as a world leader and the chosen nation of God.
Israel did not meet the expectation of God, nor did Rome, nor did Great Britain. Now what about America?
To inspire America to avoid the same mistakes, to inspire America to sacrifice herself for the sake of the world, to inspire America to work towards “One World Under God”, God summoned Reverend Moon to his country to proclaim God’s new revelation. And in particular, God called me to lead the young people of America, the leaders of tomorrow, back to God.
Today, America is plagued with problems: racism, juvenile delinquency, and immorality. Christianity is declining. Communism is rising. The menace of Communism is everywhere. Of all these problems, atheistic Communism is the worst. Is it not just America’s problem; it is the problem of religious people, it is the problem of God Himself.
“I love America”
Ladies and gentlemen, at this crossroads of human history, we must listen to the calling of God. God prepared America for 200 years. This is the time for awakening. America must accept her global responsibility. Armed with Godism, she must free the Communist world, and at last, build the Kingdom of God here on earth. God has chosen America as the flag bearer. America must rise up. Today. Tomorrow may be too late.
I not only respect America but truly love this nation. I respect and love her as a great nation, as a godly nation, and as the central nation in God’s Providence. She is now at the threshold of her third century. She must not disappoint God. Today let us pledge to God Almighty that we shall do His will. We shall never let Him down. Never!
Today in this holy place, let us together lay the cornerstone of the Kingdom of God on earth. Let us all join together as the co- workers of God. Let is be the pioneers of His Kingdom.
My dear brethren who long for unity, this is the place of commitment, the moment of decision. If you are willing to give your sweat, your blood, and your very lives to the call of Gird, then in this sacred moment before heaven and earth and before all mankind, let us shout it out. We know we can build the Kingdom of God here on earth, in His power, and with our own hands.
May God bless you and your homes, and forevermore, God bless America.
Thank you very much.