The founder and leader of the Unification Church is Sun Myung
Moon who was born in Korea on January 6, 1920. His family
converted to Christianity when he was ten and became members of
the Presbyterian Church.
At age 16 young Moon experienced a vision while in prayer on a
Korean mountainside. Moon claims that Jesus Christ appeared to
him in the vision admonishing him to carry out the task that
Christ had failed to complete. Jesus supposedly told Moon that he
was the only one who could do it. Finally, after much repeated
asking by Jesus, Moon accepted the challenge.
Moon spent the next few
years of his life preparing for the great spiritual battle ahead.
The years between his "conversion" experience and his
coming to America are shrouded in much controversy. For
documentation on those intervening years we would recommend The
Moon is Not the Son by James Bjornstad, Minneapolis: Dimension
Books/Bethany House Press, 1976.
Moon Comes to America
After achieving success with his new religion in the Far East,
especially South Korea, Moon came to America at the end of 1971
and his cult began to flourish. Today they claim some two million
The Claims of Sun Myung Moon
Sun Myung Moon has made it clear that he believes himself to be
the Messiah for this age.
With the fullness of time, God has sent his messenger to resolve
the fundamental questions of life and the universe. His name is
Sun Myung Moon. For many decades, he wandered in a vast spiritual
world in search of ultimate truth. On this path he endured
suffering unimagined by anyone in human history ... He fought
alone against myriads of satanic forces in both the spiritual and
physical worlds, and finally triumphed over them all. In this
way, he came in contact with many saints in paradise and with
Jesus, and thus brought into Light all the heavenly secrets
through his communion with God (Sun Myung Moon, Divine Principle,
Moon has also said, "No heroes in the past, no saints or
holy men in the past, like Jesus or Confucius, have excelled
us" (Sun Myung Moon, "Our Shame;' translated by Won Pok
Choi, from Master Speaks, March 11, 1973, p. 3).
Even though Moon's
doctrines are opposed to Christianity, he claims that it was
Jesus who revealed them to him. "You may again want to ask
me, 'With what authority do you weigh these things?' I spoke with
Jesus Christ in the spirit world. And I spoke also with John the
Baptist. This is my authority. If you cannot at this time
determine that my words are the truth, you will surely discover
that they are in the course of time. These are hidden truths
presented to you as a new revelation. You have heard me speak the
Bible. If you believe the Bible, you must believe what I am
saying" (Rev. Moon, Christianity in Crisis, p. 98).
And, like all cult leaders, Moon claims exclusive knowledge.
"We are the only people who truly understand the heart of
Jesus, and the hope of Jesus" (Rev. Moon, The Way of the
World, p. 20).
Source of Authority
In the Unification Church the writings and teachings of Moon take
precedence over the Bible, "It may be displeasing to
religious believers, especially to Christians, to learn that a
new expression of truth must appear. They believe that the Bible,
which they now have, is perfect and absolute in itself"
(Divine Principle, 2nd ed., 1973, p. 9).
Moon further stated,
"...The New Testament Words of Jesus and the Holy Spirit
will lose their light ... to 'lose their light' means that the
period of their mission has elapsed with the coming of the new
age" (Divine Principle, p. 118). The basic work containing
the supposed revelation given to Moon is entitled the Divine
The Divine Principle
For the members of the Unification Church, the Divine Principle
is the ultimate authoritative work, superseding even the Bible.
The Divine Principle is known as the completed testament because
it supposedly contains the present truth for this age which
heretofore had never been revealed.
The assertions of Moon are at complete odds with the Bible. The
Scriptures testify that the Word of God is eternal: "The
grass withers, the flower fades, but the Word of God stands
forever" (Isaiah 40:8 NASB). Jesus said, "Heaven and
earth shall pass away, but my Words shall not pass away "
(Matthew 24:35). The idea that the words of Jesus will somehow
lose their light is totally foreign to the teaching of the Bible.
Moreover, the Bible records the strongest condemnation for those
who would add to what the Scriptures have revealed, "You
shall not add to the Word which I am commanding you, nor take
away from it. That you may keep the commandments of the Lord your
God which I command you" (Deuteronomy 4:2 NASB). "I
testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this
book; if anyone adds to them, God shall add to him the plagues
which are written in this book" (Revelation 22:18 NASB).
Scriptures make it plain that the faith has been "once for
all delivered to the saints" (Jude 3). Any so-called
revelation that contradicts that which was previously revealed is
guilty of adding to the Word of God and should be discarded. The
Divine Principle is in this category.
Basic to Moon's world view is the concept of dualism. All of
existence is dual: Father God and Mother God; Male and Female;
Light and Dark; Yin and Yang; Spirit and Flesh. Each part of
existence has its dual aspect. Moon's God (with dual male/female
aspects) always acts in a dual manner with his dual creation.
The Fall of Man
According to the Divine Principle, until now no one has correctly
understood the Genesis account of the fall of man. The Divine
Principle teaches there were two falls, one physical and one
spiritual. Moreover, both falls were sexual in nature. Eve
supposedly had an illicit sexual relationship with Lucifer
causing the spiritual fall. Afterward, her sexual relationship
with spiritually immature Adam resulted in the physical fall.
The Divine Principle
justifies this by saying, "It is the nature of man to
conceal an area of transgression. They covered their sexual
parts, clearly indicating that they were ashamed of the sexual
areas of their bodies because they had committed sin through
them" (Divine Principle, p. 72).
Since there was a dual aspect of the fall there also needs to be
a dual aspect of redemption, necessitating both physical and
The Coming of Christ
When Jesus Christ came to earth, He was supposed to redeem
mankind both physically and spiritually, but He failed in His
mission: "Jesus failed in His Christly mission. His death on
the cross was not an essential part of God's plan for redeeming
sinful man" (Divine Principle, pp. 142, 143).
The ministry of Christ, however, was not a total failure for He
did accomplish a "spiritual" salvation at the cross of
Calvary, but He failed in achieving a "physical
salvation" for mankind (Divine Principle, p. 151).
John the Baptist
Moon believes the major reason for Jesus' crucifixion was John
the Baptist's failure. John was supposed to clear the way for
Jesus to come to the people of his day but failed because he lost
faith. This caused the people to abandon Jesus and eventually
resulted in His death. The crucifixion was not something God
desired because the work of Christ was unfinished. It is here
where Sun Myung Moon picks up where Jesus left off. Moon is
supposedly the "third Adam;' the one who is called to redeem
Moon has a non-biblical view of the person of Jesus Christ by
denying the unique deity of Jesus Christ.
"Jesus is the man of this value. However great his value may
be, he cannot assume any value greater than that of a man. .
." (Rev. Moon, Divine Principle, p. 255).
"It is plain that Jesus is not God Himself" (Rev. Moon,
Divine Principle, p. 258). "But after his crucifixion,
Christianity made Jesus into God. This is why a gap between God
and man has never been bridged. Jesus is a man in whom God is
incarnate, but he is not God Himself" (Rev. Moon,
Christianity in Crisis, pp. 12, 13). Moon tells his followers
that they can not only equal Jesus, they can also excel Him.
"You can compare yourself with Jesus Christ, and feel you
can be greater than Jesus Himself" (Sun Myung Moon,
"The Way" translated by Won Pok Choi, from the Master
Speaks, June 30, 1974, p. 4). Jesus, according to Moon, was a
failure: 'Abraham was the father of faith, Moses was a man of
faith, Jesus was the Son of man, trying to carry out his mission
at the cost of his life. But they are, in a way, failures"
(Sun Myung Moon, "Victory or Defeat," translated by Won
Pok Choi, from Master Speaks, March 31, 1973, p. 1).
Speaking of the work of Christ, the writer to the Hebrews said,
"For by one offering He has perfected for all time those who
are sanctified" (Hebrews 10:14). The Scriptures testify that
the work of Christ on the cross is complete, sufficient to secure
the salvation of the individual. Jesus accomplished all that was
necessary for the full salvation of mankind. He was not a
The Death of Christ
The Bible plainly states that Jesus Christ came to this earth for
the specific purpose of dying for the sins of the world,
"Just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to
serve, and to give His life a ransom for many" (Matthew
20:28). Rev. Moon, however, teaches to the contrary: "We,
therefore, must realize that Jesus did not come to die on the
cross" (Rev. Moon, Divine Principle, p. 178). The Scriptures
teach "that God was in Christ reconciling the world to
Himself" (II Corinthians 5:19). But Moon declares, "...
the physical body of Jesus was invaded by Satan through the
cross" (Rev. Moon, Divine Principle, p. 438).
Moon also thinks that the death of Christ was a victory for
Satan: "Satan thus attained what he had intended through the
4,000-year course of history, by crucifying Jesus, with the
exercise of his maximum power" (Rev. Moon, Divine Principle,
p. 435). He also teaches Christ's death was without effect:
"It is equally true that the cross has been unable to
establish the Kingdom of Heaven on Earth by removing our original
sin" (Rev. Moon, Divine Principle, p. 178).
Moon, the Messiah?
As previously noted, Moon believes himself to be the person to
finish the task left uncompleted by Jesus. The failure of Jesus
leaves the way open for Moon. The Divine Principle states that
the Messiah, the Lord of the Second Advent, must be born
physically on earth to accomplish man's physical salvation. While
neither the Divine Principle nor Moon publicly declare that he is
the Messiah, the inference is strongly given that Moon is indeed
the Lord of the Second Advent.
To his followers there appears to be no question about it; Moon
is the Messiah. He is reportedly worshipped by his followers and
given the designation "Father. " Moon has stated,
"God is now throwing Christianity away and is now
establishing a new religion, and this new religion is the
Unification Church" (Time Magazine, September 30, 1974). The
Bible portrays two comings of the Messiah. The first coming was
fulfilled when Jesus of Nazareth was born to the virgin Mary.
"Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days
of Herod the King, behold, Magi, from the east arrived in
Jerusalem, saying, 'Where is He who has been born King of the
Jews?"' (Matthew 2:1, 2 NASB). The Bible speaks over and
over again of the second coming of Christ which will be a
visible, bodily, return from Heaven!'. Men of Galilee, why do you
stand looking into the sky? This Jesus, who has been taken up
from you into heaven, will come in just the same way as you have
watched Him go into heaven" (Acts 1:11 NASB). "Behold,
He is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see Him.
.." (Revelation 1:7 NASB).
There is no biblical
teaching that the Messiah will be born physically a second time
to accomplish any physical salvation. Jesus accomplished both
physical and spiritual salvation at His first coming by His work
on the cross. He is the only Savior. There is no need for another
Messiah. 'And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no
other name under heaven that has been given among men, by which
we must be saved" (Acts 4:12 NASB). Another Messiah is both
unbiblical and unnecessary.
Although the Unification Church makes astounding claims for
itself, the facts speak otherwise. The teaching of the Divine
Principle is at odds with the Bible at all of its central points
and therefore cannot be a completion of God's revelation. Moon
has no messianic credentials and must be considered as a false
prophet, of which Jesus warned us: "Beware of false
prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly are
ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits"
(Matthew 7:15, 16 NASB).
Unification Church Terms
Unification Church - Eastern cult founded by Korean Sun Myung
Moon. Claims to have the complete truth of God which has just now
been revealed to this present age through Moon. Considers its
leader, Rev. Moon the Messiah who is completing the salvation
work unfinished by Jesus Christ
Collegiate Association for the Research of Principles (CARP)
-Front organization for the Unification Church, used to recruit
members and funds from college areas.
Holy Spirit Association for the Unification of World
Christianity-The complete name of the Unification Church.
Lord of the Second Advent -Title of the second Messiah, said to
be Sun Myung Moon, who comes to complete the unfinished salvation
work of Jesus Christ.
Master Speaks-Tapes and transcriptions of Moon's messages to his
Moon, Sun Myung -Founder of the Unification Church. Born in Korea
in 1920. Moon claims to have had a vision of Christ in 1936 in
which he was told that he must finish the work which Christ
began. His followers believe him to be the Messiah, the Lord of
the Second Advent. Moonies -Nickname (which they do not
appreciate) for followers of Rev. Sun Myung Moon and the
New Hope Singers International -Singing publicity front
organization for the Unification Church.
The Divine Principle -According to the Unification Church, the
Divine Principle book is the completed testament, superseding the
Bible, containing the present spiritual truth for this age which
heretofore had not been revealed. Its author is the cult's
founder and leader, Sun Myung Moon.
True Father and True Mother-Titles of Moon and his wife, ascribed
to them by their followers in the Unification Church.