Cham Bumo Gyeong: Episode 57
Cham Bumo Gyeong
Book 3. The Beginning of True Father's Public Course and the Founding of HSA-UWC
Chapter 1: True Father Begins His Course of Public Life
Section 3: Eight-Stage Restoration and 43-Day Battle for Victory, Paragraph 11
Section 4: Heungnam Prison, Paragraph 11
11 I never complained even during hardships. Even amid persecution, I did not complain. Nations, communities, families and individuals in the spirit world continually attacked me until the end of my 43- day course, but they could not defeat me. They were all defeated. Later, even God struck me. However, no matter how God treated me, I held onto God. Since God opposed me, Jesus, Confucius, Buddha, Mohammed, and the whole spirit world opposed me. However, during those 43 days I never yielded. Finally after 43 days, God had to reach a verdict. That is why God proclaimed me as the greatest victor in heaven and on earth.
Section 4. Hungnam PrisonInheriting Jesus’ mission
True Father’s suffering in Hungnam Prison was the indemnity course that made it possible for him, as the Returning Lord, to continue Jesus’ mission. For the Returning Lord to continue Jesus’ mission, he needed to survive despite the opposition of Christian believers. He could not die on the cross as Jesus had. Additionally, the Lord at the Second Advent had to find more disciples than the 12 who abandoned Jesus at the time of his crucifixion. Hungnam Prison in North Korea was like the cross. It too killed its inmates slowly and gradually. True Father not only had to survive but also had to find and establish more than 12 disciples. He was not allowed to witness to those around him, but even so, ancestors of the prisoners appeared to them in dreams and taught them to serve True Father and attend him well. When True Father finally left prison, he had more than 24 disciples.
For the first two weeks of his imprisonment at Hungnam, he shared half of his rations with cellmates. His mother in Jeongju took great pains to prepare powdered mixed grains and clothes for him, but he gave them all to other inmates. Moreover, during the course of his imprisonment, he was given the exemplary laborer award three times. Father always kept a little of his daily ration of drinking water to clean his body before going to bed. He did this with the awareness that he was God’s Son. In these ways, he led such an exemplary life that God Himself could not help but be moved.
1 In the spirit world, Jesus had to go to the bottom of hell for three days after his crucifixion and overcome a path of suffering there, to make the starting point of victory both in spirit and flesh. Unless he was able to open the way to liberate those in hell, Satan would be able to accuse him; therefore, he had to make a way for them. This is the reason Jesus went to the spirits in hell and pioneered a way for them. Because I knew this principle, when I went to North Korea I was willing to go to prison there.
Even while I was being led away in shackles for incarceration in Pyongyang Prison, I was promised by the spirit world that I would meet certain people in prison. In other words, I was promised, “If you go there, you will meet people who are like Jesus’ three disciples.” If this were not so, it would not be in accord with heavenly laws that govern the realm of fortune and restoration. That is why even the path of shackles and imprisonment can be the path of the greatest hope. In other words, I actually went to prison with hope and expectation. I knew, “I will meet such and such a person.” I did not go to prison in despair. Since I went to prison with such a hope, at the prison I made my own way, and through the merit of that hard labor I enabled that door to be opened naturally. To do this, I had to make a total indemnity condition. I knew that while I was living in prison I had to become a sacrificial offering. This is why I took on the most difficult tasks while I was there.
2 After the liberation of Korea, I began to propagate the Word in North Korea, even though it was overflowing with my enemies. I started on that path in prison. When I went to Pyongyang Prison, I knew that I would not die. I even knew whom I would meet there. When I needed something, the spirit world would sometimes instruct other prisoners—for instance, ignorant thieves, robbers or murderers—that in a certain prison cell there was an inmate with number 596, and they should bring a certain thing to that person. When it became winter and the weather grew cold, and I had no clothes to put on, they were instructed to bring me clothes. And when I was really hungry because I had nothing to eat, the spirit world sought out people who had never met me and, telling them my name and my number, compelled them to bring me food. Such things happened, not once or twice but many times.
Since I knew that there were people prepared for me to meet in Pyongyang Prison, where I remained until May 20, 1948, I kept hope. It feels like only yesterday that I saw the willow leaves brushing against the prison window. I can still recall it vividly. I met people there who had promised to follow God’s Will. With those meetings, the secret meetings of heaven began from the deepest valley in the land of the enemy. From there, I started to recruit heaven’s soldiers. Since I was cornered and driven away by the families and the society, I had to start my work in this way from prison.
3 My transfer in shackles from Pyongyang Prison to Hungnam Prison took 17 hours. What do you think was on my mind as I rode in that vehicle? I felt so miserable, thinking of God who would have to see me in this situation. He had no one but me to restore through indemnity the 6,000 years of His providence, yet I ended up in this kind of situation. I was the only one who knew what should be done for God. Can you imagine how serious I must have been as I looked at the fields and mountains through the window? At the time, I was shackled in the vehicle together with a violent thief. As I sat there, I wondered with deepest seriousness, “How can I survive in these circumstances?”
4 I spent two years and eight months in Pyongyang Prison and Hungnam Prison in North Korea. This corresponded to the three years of Jesus’ public life. While there, I was able to restore more than 12 people. By doing so, I restored all the conditions that Jesus had lost. Even though most of them did not follow me to the end, when I was freed from prison I put other people in their positions. Since I had completed all that I had planned to do, heaven directed the United States, the archangel nation, and UN troops to attack North Korea in order to liberate me. That was how I came out of prison. Four people continued to follow me at the time. The UN troops protected South Korea. This set a global condition for heavenly fortune to come back to the democratic world, and the work of restoring Christianity could be launched.
5 When Jesus was made to walk the path of death, the people of Israel and even his three beloved disciples betrayed him. That is why, according to the principle of restoration through indemnity, when I was in prison I had to restore the number 12 through indemnity, the same number as the 12 disciples that Jesus had lost. Since I was in such a position, even though I did not witness at all while I was in Hungnam Prison, people in the spirit world, who belonged to the realm of the Second Israel, witnessed to 12 inmates to follow me and fulfill that number. Such was the historical connection I experienced. Even while I was under the strictest surveillance in prison by the communists, God took responsibility to secretly organize people who united in heart with me. All this was unknown to anyone else. While there, I could not witness openly. Yet, even when I stayed silent, the spirit world witnessed to people for me.True Father prevails
While in Hungnam Prison, True Father went to sleep later than anyone else and woke up before anyone else. At the labor site, for the sake of his fellow inmates he always volunteered for the most difficult tasks. Because his lifestyle was so remarkable, True Father was nicknamed the Saint of the Prison. Heaven could not but be moved by his absolutely sacrificial heart. In this way, he set all the conditions necessary for the providence of restoration through indemnity.
After the UN troops landed in Hungnam on October 12, 1950, the North Korean army began executing prisoners. True Fathers execution was scheduled to take place on October 14, but on that very day UN troops launched a full-scale attack and the North Korean army retreated. This enabled True Father and all the remaining prisoners to be freed. Right after he came out of prison, True Father set out for Pyongyang on foot, arriving there ten days later.
6 October 14 is the day I came out of Hungnam Prison. Can you imagine how miserable I must have felt when I entered that prison? I had to survive it by all means. To survive, I had to go through a course in which I was willing to die. We did forced, hard labor, but even so I became the prison’s model worker. That was the secret of my survival. There were not just dozens of workers, rather there were close to 1,000 workers there. Even from among that number the jailors chose me as the worker with the best results. Do you think that was easy to accomplish? That is how I survived. By taking this kind of path, I was able to proceed toward the fulfillment of the Will.
Where is the leader who will overcome the obstacles of restoration, filled with bitter sorrow? I took responsibility to digest everything—the sorrows of the people, God’s bitter grief resulting from the failures of world Christianity, and all the difficulties related to those. As God’s co-worker, I stood on His side and recreated my path. I organized the ideal Christian cultural sphere that could resonate with my mission from God.
7 I was the champion laborer at the fertilizer factory in Hungnam. Because of that, all the prisoners followed me around. Every morning, the guards organized us into teams for work. We were not allowed to work with the same people every day. So, when the time came to organize teams, if, for instance, I had gone to the toilet, others waited for me to come back and then lined up behind me. In this situation, all the best workers ended up joining my team and I became their leader.
I made a science out of how to tie a bag, carry it, and load it onto the train. I designed the most efficient method to accomplish these tasks. Therefore, when I worked I did not have to think about what I was doing, but was freed to think of other things. I was making plans for the future, thinking about the nation and the world. While I formulated such plans, I often lost track of time and the working hours flew by. Consequently, even though I was sweating as much as the others, I did not feel exhausted. Working in this way was mentally empowering. Every time they gave out the awards, I received the award for being the model worker. This is how I survived there.
8 On August 1, 1950, during the Korean War, American B-29 bombers launched an all-out attack on Hungnam. I knew this would happen. I foresaw it. Additionally, I knew that God would protect me, providing a circle of safety 12 meters around me during the attack. I told those who were close to me to stay near me. As the bombs were falling, I meditated silently. I was not thinking of the bombing but was rather thinking about the ideal world in the future.
Ultimately, the most worthy people are those with a clear vision of the ideal. If a person is carrying out a mission of providential restoration, sending that person to the spirit world would be a loss for God and for the cosmos. So, God desired to protect me at any cost, and in fact He had no choice but to do so.
9 A few days before the UN bombers attacked, the communists began to lead some of the prisoners away. One day they started to collect hemp strings, such as are used for corpses. I intuitively felt that some kind of final reckoning was imminent. I offered a very serious prayer. The guards called the prisoners one by one and explained that they would be transferred to another place. The prisoners did not realize it, but I knew it was their final call. They threw each of the prisoners upside down into a well, killing them. The next day it would have been my turn, but that very night, at 2:00 a.m., the UN troops launched an all-out attack, and it was thanks to them that I was able to leave Hungnam Prison alive.
10 The UN troops bombed North Korea in 1950. The first place they bombed was the Hungnam area. The place they bombed was very close to Hungnam Prison where I was being held at the time. Thanks to those UN troops, I was able to walk out of prison. There are many behind-the-scenes stories of how this came about. From Hungnam, which is located on the east coast, I returned to Pyongyang on foot. I walked from the shores of the East Sea all the way to Pyongyang, which is situated in the west. Once I arrived in Pyongyang, I informed every person who had followed me previously that I had returned. I searched for all my disciples. Even though most of them did not come back, I was able to gather a few people together.
11 I was set free on October 14, 1950, and, after following the coast of the East Sea for a short distance, I walked to Pyongyang, accompanied by four followers who had been in the labor camp with me. When we reached the border between North and South Pyeongan Provinces, we discovered that the North Korean soldiers who were fleeing over the mountain passes were executing anyone whom they believed harbored defiant thoughts towards communism. Our path brought us directly through just such a mountain pass. Dozens of people were being lined up and killed. But we were not in our prison uniforms, so the North Korean soldiers did not recognize us as the enemy. Four times during that journey we faced such life-and-death situations.