45 Ekron, with its surrounding settlements and villages; 46 west of Ekron, all that were in the vicinity of Ashdod, together with their villages; 47 Ashdod, its surrounding settlements and villages; and Gaza, its settlements and villages, as far as the Wadi of Egypt and the coastline of the Mediterranean Sea.
Richard: Here God allotted land for the tribes of Judah.
14 Therefore this is what the Lord God Almighty says:
“Because the people have spoken these words,
I will make my words in your mouth a fire
and these people the wood it consumes.
15 People of Israel,” declares the Lord,
“I am bringing a distant nation against you—
an ancient and enduring nation,
a people whose language you do not know,
whose speech you do not understand.
16 Their quivers are like an open grave;
all of them are mighty warriors.
17 They will devour your harvests and food,
devour your sons and daughters;
they will devour your flocks and herds,
devour your vines and fig trees.
With the sword they will destroy
the fortified cities in which you trust.
Richard: When the people of Israel and Judah turned against God, they were punished. Right now the United States is seeing various killings and atrocities of various kinds happening. We too can cry out to God and repent, for have we not turned far from God as a nation, as a whole?
Let Us Fathom the Heart of Heaven
Rev. Sun Myung Moon
September 13, 1959
We are the people who should go before God. We are the sons and daughters of Heaven, part of God’s family, heavenly couples and heavenly brothers and sisters. Yet what is our current situation? We lost our brothers and sisters. We are pitiful people who do not have parents, families, citizens and partners. These are what we must restore. We have to recover them.
When we seek them, we have to do so through our minds. Heaven comes to us through our minds. Heaven knocks on the doors to our minds and enters. For six thousand years of history, Heaven has instilled in us the feeling, “This is not how I should be; I have to escape from this world.” The six- thousand-year history of war is the repetition of fights between those who represent goodness and those who represent evil. Human history has been a history of war.
In the beginning, it may seem that evil people strike and prevail over good people, but when good people are struck, they multiply. When they die, they multiply. The condition in Heaven allows three people to be recovered when one person is struck. For this reason Christianity is struck first in any nation. God’s tactic is to send His beloved sons and daughters to Satan’s world and let them suffer through beatings and death. In exchange for their suffering, He takes back a comparable amount from Satan’s world. Good people never strike first. For the same amount that they are struck, they make a claim from Satan’s world. This is the tactic of Heaven. This is the reason that the history of Christianity until today has been a history of martyrdom and blood.
In history those who strike first always lose. Look at the World Wars. In the First and the Second World Wars, the side that struck first lost. In the third World War, the side which strikes first will also lose. This is why even in an individual’s life, it is said that one should persevere and restrain oneself; those who persevere will be blessed. One is to take the beating and persevere. This is because when you endure, you will rise up one day.
God has been enduring through all manner of grief. Even when He was accused by Satan during the six thousand years, He was not able to alleviate His indignation and sorrow. There will come a time when God will empathize with you and say, “You are also bitter; you must belong to My side.”
For this reason the religious world today tells us to endure. They tell us to believe and persevere. They tell us to be meek, obedient and sacrificial. Why? When we do so, the time will come when we will rise up.
Because Heaven’s tactic is to be hit first before taking things back, Jesus prayed as he was being struck. He did not even want to violate the laws of Satan’s world. If he had considered the people his enemies, he would have been violating the laws of Satan’s world. Such have been God’s tactics.
We have to understand this. You who are here today should understand that each of you is a son or daughter of God and a citizen of the heavenly kingdom. God sought you many times in history. You have to understand that you are members of the family in the heavenly kingdom. Moreover, you have to understand that you are the sons and daughters of God’s direct lineage. We have to become these sons and daughters, members of the heavenly family, people and citizens.
We have not understood God. God of the past, present and future came to us for our own sake, yet we did not know that God came to us with the hope that we would become His true sons and daughters. God is truly miserable. Did you know that God sought you?
Now that we look back, we find that we have a responsibility to our Father. Although God has exerted Himself for six thousand years on earth, has there been a person who can be proud of himself eternally before Satan and not be attacked by Satan’s world? There has not. There has not been a family about whom God could say, “This family is my family,” or a people about whom God could say, “This people is my people,” and whom Satan could not attack. There has not been a land which God could claim, “This is My land.”
This is the situation God is in. Then who should do this work? Since human beings fell, human beings should do this work. We should say, “Father, my home is Your home, and this home never allows Satan in. It will never allow him.” However, is there a home which can make that statement?