PDF file: 20211219_Meishu-samas Birthday Service_Masaaki-sama
I am ready to fight against the whole world in order to defend justice.
Era of Religious Civilization, vol. 2
Regarding the video just now, “Save Sekai Kyusei Kyo,” how did each one of you feel about it?
For me, seeing the images of Meishu-sama, Nidai-sama, Sandai-sama and our current Kyoshu-sama left an impression, of course. But the clips of the members gathering under Nidai-sama and Sandai-sama, in particular, really stood out to me.
After Meishu-sama’s ascension, there were many people who quit having faith in him. And in those circumstances, there were people who believed in Meishu-sama’s last will for Nidai-sama to carry on his sacred work. There were people who believed that even though Meishu-sama passed away, his work was not over, and it would continue under Kyoshu-sama; there were people who believed that Kyoshu-sama would reveal Meishu-sama’s will in the physical world.
I want you to be clear about one important thing. Before his ascension, Meishu-sama did not tell the executive directors of the Church to continue his work and lead as the center of the Church.
Also, the members who gathered under Nidai-sama or Sandai-sama did not do so because Nidai-sama or Sandai-sama were placed as Kyoshu-sama by the Board of Executive Directors.
Rather, it is because Meishu-sama expressed his will before he made his transition that Nidai-sama inherit his work. By expressing this, Meishu-sama was telling us that from then on, the center of the Church would be Kyoshu and that he would relay his will through the holy seat of Kyoshu. The people who believed in this Meishu-sama’s will were the ones who gathered under Nidai-sama and Sandai-sama, as you saw in the video.
As such, because there were those who believed in the holy seat of Kyoshu, the real faith in Meishu-sama was able to continue, thus we were able to know about Meishu-sama and were allowed to encounter God through Meishu-sama.
So we are here today thanks to the people who believed in the existence of Kyoshu-sama after Meishu-sama’s ascension and had that kind of faith. This is the reason why we can gather here today. Because those people existed, all of you exist, and in that sense, because all of you exist now, I exist.
And it is because of all of you, who are inheriting this noble faith now, that many people from here on too will be able to encounter God and Meishu-sama’s true salvation. As I reflect on this, I think about just how precious the faith each one of you carry is and how grateful I am.
As such, Meishu-sama says in his Sacred Word that any group, any organization, has a center, a leading figure. Take Japan as an example. Ultimately, its center is His Majesty the Emperor.
And for Sekai Kyusei Kyo, the center, the leading figure, has always been Kyoshu-sama. This is how it has been always.
Despite that, and I am ashamed to say it, our Church has been having internal conflicts, and the people who call themselves Sekai Kyusei Kyo are saying they don’t need Yoichi Okada Kyoshu-sama as the center figure anymore.
Okay. Fair enough. In that case, who actually, from then on, is the center figure for Sekai Kyusei Kyo? From then on, whose example do the members follow? Who is the example of Meishu-sama’s faith in this material world and by his or her virtue, guides the organization Sekai Kyusei Kyo?
Currently, is it “Godai-sama (fifth spiritual leader) of Sekai Kyusei Kyo,” Emeritus professor at Tokai University, Mr. Nobuyuki Watase? I don’t think so, since he does not come out in front of the members. But there is something called “Authorization of Kyoshu” in the bylaws and Church rules. The Board of Executive Directors needs this “seal of Kyoshu,” and I assume Mr. Watase is there, in effect, to simply go through these procedural formalities desired by the Board.
This means that in the current Sekai Kyusei Kyo, there is only one leading figure, a central existence, to be revered by members as the model of faith in Meishu-sama. Who is this person? It is Mr. Yoshiyuki Nagasawa, who currently calls himself the president of Sekai Kyusei Kyo. It can’t be anyone else.
If they don’t need Yondai Kyoshu-sama, it means that in Sekai Kyusei Kyo, its “president,” Mr. Yoshiyuki Nagasawa, is now the model of faith for the members. It means that with his faith, he guides members connected to Sekai Kyusei Kyo in every part of the world.
I haven’t actually heard this Mr. Nagasawa speak very much publicly. If anything, I only know about how he has put out a lot of material like written pieces criticizing Kyoshu-sama’s messages, saying in what way they are different from Meishu-sama’s teachings. Well, I think anyone can invent a critical piece pointing out differences between what someone is saying and what Meishu-sama is saying considering his enormous amount of Sacred Word.
But if Mr. Nagasawa is really that important to Sekai Kyusei Kyo, if possible, I would like for him to come to an occasion like this and talk about his faith and way of life. After hearing what Mr. Nagasawa says, Kyoshu-sama and I would like to determine whether or not he is honestly living according to Meishu-sama’s will. And this goes for all the presidents of the Churches around the world who ousted Kyoshu-sama this time. You can come here and talk, and we can judge you.
As you know, the title of the video we just saw was “Save Sekai Kyusei Kyo.” Let me be clear that Meishu-sama never even once used the name “Sekai Kyusei Kyo” or World Church of Salvation. Until he made his ascension, he used “Sekai Meshia Kyo” or World Church of Messiah. Meishu-sama specified the reading of “World Church of Messiah” by placing the phonetic characters above the two Chinese characters for “Kyusei” or Salvation so that they would be read as “Meshia” or Messiah, which was unusual, but that’s what Meishu-sama did. Although a bit confusing, the Japanese writing system allows you to specify how certain Chinese characters are read.
So if this video title were seen back in Meishu-sama’s time, everyone would have automatically read the characters for “Save Sekai Kyusei Kyo” as “Save Sekai Meshia Kyo” or “Save World Church of Messiah.”
But in 1957, only two years after Meishu-sama’s ascension, the name of his Church was changed to Sekai Kyusei Kyo. Well, it was convenient to change, right? If the Chinese characters for “Kyusei” did not specifically have the phonetic characters specified above them, it would simply read as the standard “Salvation” and not “Messiah.”
As such, from 1957 up until today in 2021, our Church has been recognized as Sekai Kyusei Kyo. When someone sees the Chinese characters of Sekai Kyusei Kyo now, society included, everyone usually reads it as “Sekai Kyusei Kyo.” But in Meishu-sama’s time, no one read it like that. The Chinese characters for “Sekai Kyusei Kyo” were read as “Sekai Meshia Kyo” or World Church of Messiah.
If Meishu-sama were to suddenly come back to this world and hear us say “Sekai Kyusei Kyo,” I think he would be surprised.
So I think this change in name was basically a stab in Meishu-sama’s back.
Meishu-sama wished for us to read the Chinese characters for “Kyusei” or Salvation as “Messiah.” In fact, he clearly said that the name Sekai Kyusei Kyo was Eastern in nature and uninteresting and wanted to use the Western word Messiah.
But after Meishu-sama made his transition, we changed the name of our Church from Sekai Meshia Kyo, World Church of Messiah, the name Meishu-sama himself prepared, to Sekai Kyusei Kyo, World Church of Salvation. Still more, we used Sekai Kyusei Kyo for such a long time that now, society thinks we are actually Sekai Kyusei Kyo and were never Sekai Meshia Kyo. What we did is the same as stabbing Meishu-sama in the back. This is how I’ve been thinking recently.
Of course, I understand the purpose, the intention of the name change. Basically, it was because of the following: the word Messiah sounds very religious; Jesus Christ is also considered the Messiah so it is a word that would stir up tension with Christianity; so Messiah should not be in the identity of the Church; the work of Messiah is to save the world in the first place, so the name doesn’t have to be World Church of Messiah—Sekai Kyusei Kyo should be just fine.
But if you drift away from Meishu-sama’s will like that once, there’s no limit to how far you will go after that.
The next thing you know, it’s not even a religion anymore. At first, it started with Messiah. Meishu-sama wanted to put out the word Messiah. But we thought the work of Messiah, essentially, is to save the world, so there’s actually no need to put out the word Messiah. Then we thought “save the world” actually means to “make the world better,” so we don’t really need to be a religion. And it keeps going. This, in every way, is what suits human interest—not at all what suits Meishu-sama.
What am I talking about? We were totally a part of it, but symbolically, it is MOA, the MOA Museum of Art or MOA activities. Basically, this is about dropping Meishu-sama to the level of society, what society says and accepts, and going forward as such. For us, this is not someone else’s problem at all.
Didn’t we come all this way thinking that the MOA Museum was easier to introduce to people? But once World Church of Messiah became Sekai Kyusei Kyo or World Church of Salvation and still further, started doing non-religious activities, we were very far removed from Meishu-sama’s will.
Even still, we accepted that kind of thinking without any resistance. We even thought it was convenient to convey to friends, didn’t we?
And even though the God of Meishu-sama is the same as the Heavenly Father of Christianity, we tried to replace this God with a Shinto-type god, didn’t we? Since Shintoism and Buddhism are generally accepted in Japan.
As such, until today, didn’t we all drop Meishu-sama to the level of society, put ourselves there, too, and convey his teachings to others? Then, didn’t we all proudly think that we materialized Meishu-sama’s will in some way?
So what brought us to that posture in the first place? Our very first step in the wrong direction was changing the Church name from World Church of Messiah to World Church of Salvation, Sekai Kyusei Kyo. This was our very first mistake.
That is why the name of our Church has now been changed to Sekai Meshia Kyo, World Church of Messiah, using the phonetic characters for Meshia, Messiah, completely removing the Chinese characters for Kyusei, Salvation. It would prevent anyone from trying to change the name back to Sekai Kyusei Kyo, World Church of Salvation, in the future. This name change using the phonetic characters declares to Meishu-sama that we will never run away from the word Messiah, and it also expresses our apology to Meishu-sama, who wanted to put out the sound “World Church of Messiah.” That is why the phonetic characters for Messiah are used in the Church name now and not the Chinese characters, I believe.
But, at any rate, by changing the name from World Church of Messiah to World Church of Salvation, Sekai Kyusei Kyo, we put what suited human interests—Church operations, matters that are easy to convey to others or easily accepted by society, etc.—before Meishu-sama’s wishes and what he left for us. We went deeper and deeper into human-centeredness.
And Johrei. It was the same with Johrei.
Meishu-sama said over 60 years ago—over 60 years!—that “Johrei is not so important anymore.” When it comes to Johrei, some people criticize Kyoshu-sama, but who said that Johrei is not so important anymore? It was Meishu-sama. Who said that from now on, we enter the world of sonen and that Johrei is not so important anymore? It was Meishu-sama.
Meishu-sama said this during the time of World Church of Messiah. But for us of Sekai Kyusei Kyo who do not receive Meishu-sama’s will, this is inconvenient. After all, Johrei is convenient for missionary work. So to put it bluntly, Meishu-sama’s will does not matter to Sekai Kyusei Kyo.
Then there is Kyoshu-sama, who wants to somehow, in any way possible, respond to this Meishu-sama’s will and is explaining what Meishu-sama meant by “Johrei is not so important anymore”: In reality, within each and every one of us is the hand of God, and with His hand, He receives the various thoughts and feelings that arise in our hearts and minds. That hand of love is within each one of us. When Kyoshu-sama speaks up about this, those people say that he is denying Johrei, which means they are actually denying Meishu-sama.
And there is also the issue of Christianity, right? Kyoshu-sama has a Christian friend and is learning about Christianity, which they say is a problem. Is that line of reasoning really all right?
Let’s look at all five of today’s hymns. They are titled as “Meishu-sama’s Hymns” because, I believe, there are those who cannot believe these hymns were actually composed by Meishu-sama. Those who want to deny Christianity would love to think that these hymns by Meishu-sama were composed by Kyoshu-sama, right? But that’s not the case. They are all Meishu-sama’s hymns. All five hymns have the word hallelujah. It is enough to think, wow, I didn’t know Meishu-sama used hallelujah so much!
That is to say, in our daily lives, in our daily conversations, of course we can say the word hallelujah, right? Of course, we can say praise the Lord. Did you know that Meishu-sama composed all those hymns with the word hallelujah, as in praise the Lord? If one of Meishu-sama’s followers were to suddenly say out loud, “Hallelujah!” to praise God, isn’t there a part of us that would think how strange it is for a follower of Meishu-sama to say that? That is how far gone we are from Meishu-sama’s will.
Meishu-sama repeatedly used the word hallelujah, meaning praise the Lord. How about us, followers of Meishu-sama? Have we ever, even once, said this word in our lives to truly praise God?
In today’s Sacred Word too, Meishu-sama sees himself and Jesus as one, doesn’t he? He says there is nothing wrong with going to a Christian school; praying to Jesus is the same as praying to him; praying to him is the same as praying to Jesus. The two—Jesus and Meishu-sama—have a very close relationship. Meishu-sama’s birthday is on December 23. Jesus’s is on December 25. How can they not have a connection?
But we ended up changing World Church of Messiah to World Church of Salvation, Sekai Kyusei Kyo, and we practically believed that the right way was to not even be a religion anymore—that’s how far we went from Meishu-sama’s will.
Believing that he had to bring us back to the true path somehow, Meishu-sama caused great unrest in the Church. If you look at the history of Sekai Kyusei Kyo, it is quite terrible. It was conflict after conflict—scrambles over the sacred grounds, calling in the police, lawsuits and trials. Well, the lawsuits continue today too. Through those strict lessons in tough love, through all the conflict and unrest, Meishu-sama was trying to tell us to return to World Church of Messiah and to realize his will.
And ultimately, we came to a head. Our fellow members of faith ended up secretly following, wiretapping and photographing/filming Kyoshu-sama.
Forget about being a person of faith—someone who commits that kind of act has already deviated from the path that a human being should be following. That is how low we ourselves have fallen. This is not someone else’s problem. This is our very own problem. There is no excuse.
There are people who say they don’t want to hear about this anymore or why say this when we are already actively moving forward. But I say this many times—this is not about someone else’s problem. I repeat: it is not someone else’s problem. Sure enough, this is something that we must face head-on, isn’t it?
Well, I am sure that the people who committed this act of secretly following and filming Kyoshu-sama, did not want their act to be exposed, did they? They didn’t want people to know that they were doing such an act.
What they really wanted to do, actually, was to follow Kyoshu-sama in secret during his private time, secretly take photos and videos, find some kind of weakness, then confront him with the information they found so they could frighten him into silence, hoping that he would change and do as he was told. That’s what it was—blackmailing Kyoshu-sama.
I think this act of secretly following and filming someone in itself is pretty serious but the approach that they took, this blackmailing someone who was inconvenient to them, someone who posed an obstacle, was even worse. This person is inconvenient; what should we do; let’s follow him in secret; we should get information on him, some dirt, and use it to make him do what we say—this approach, this blackmailing.
Can you believe that this was the approach taken by people who are supposed to save the world? I mean, we are talking about Sekai Kyusei Kyo, World Church of “Salvation.”
Now if Kyoshu-sama had given in to them, what would have happened to us? That would have been the end of us. Just imagine being under the leadership of people who use methods as cowardly as secretly following and filming then blackmailing someone and being under a weak Kyoshu-sama who gives in. We would have been hopeless.
Normally, people in distinguished positions, such as executive directors, are there because they are closer to Meishu-sama than other members, right? Despite that, let’s say those kinds of people use those kinds of methods and Kyoshu-sama gives in. Under them, we would have been finished, right?
But Kyoshu-sama stood up and has held firm to fight for us so that we would not end up under the leadership of people who use those methods.
And it is all of you who decided to respond to this Kyoshu-sama’s heart and who determined to walk on the right path.
Now I believe almost all the people who stayed behind Sekai Kyusei Kyo know, more or less, what was done to Kyoshu-sama, as there is a lot of information out there.
If they know and still do not come to Kyoshu-sama, there is no way I, in the name of Meishu-sama, can call them followers of Meishu-sama.
I mean, isn’t it so disrespectful to Meishu-sama? Those people who carried out that act for sure, but also the Churches around the world that approved of it and the members under those Churches—to call them followers of Meishu-sama is just plain disrespectful to him. Members who do those kinds of things or who approve of such and do not come to Kyoshu-sama are no longer followers of Meishu-sama, no doubt.
Why am I being ordered by Meishu-sama to talk about these things now? Even I, myself, do not know the depths as to why.
But at the very least, I believe Meishu-sama wants to save those who committed or approve of that shameful act. I am sure Meishu-sama is trying hard now to bring them to repentance.
I believe he is strongly wishing for those people to “Repent! Repent of those deeds and come to the true path!” Nothing would make Meishu-sama happier if one day, they can realize, “I committed such a terrible act that has tarnished Meishu-sama’s good name,” and repent.
I certainly understand if you don’t want to hear about this anymore—secretly following people, blackmailing or the like is not a joyful topic. But for the sake of salvation, for the sake of salvation of those who can no longer be called Meishu-sama’s followers, there is something that we need to face. There is something that we must know, something that we must hear.
There is also the court trial.
I’m not sure what all of you think about the Church being involved in the trial, but this too, in the end, is for the sake of salvation.
It is not for the sake of something petty like who is right or who is wrong. We should not be involved in a trial if that were the case.
If that side were to win the trial, would they be happy saying, “Hooray! We kicked out Kyoshu-sama who is connected to Meishu-sama, Nidai-sama and Sandai-sama! Hooray! We kicked out Meishu-sama’s grandson!”? Would any of Meishu-sama’s followers celebrate that way? If they were to, that would be as far as they could go as followers. That would be the farthest they could fall. But now, they actually are heading toward this cliff, this fall, aren’t they?
Now if Sekai Kyusei Kyo is able to reconnect with Kyoshu-sama, they may still have a chance to repent. So I believe that the current Sekai Kyusei Kyo’s one and only chance of salvation is to lose the trial. In actuality, this is the only chance of salvation left for them. For us, it doesn’t really matter whether we win or lose. We are under Kyoshu-sama’s leadership, that is, under Meishu-sama’s leadership, and nothing can be shaken.
So the trial, too, is for the sake of salvation.
What I’m trying to say through all this is that while we all have various images of who Meishu-sama is, we have a tendency to forget about Meishu-sama’s righteousness, the heart that is resolute in righteousness. With this in mind, I have been speaking today.
Meishu-sama who does not give in. Meishu-sama who is righteous. We must not forget this.
Meishu-sama says in a hymn,
“In this human world, / Strong are you / Who can forget the self / And stick to the right path / With a resolute mind.”
If you do not try to understand this carefully, it will end with your vague understanding of it. I mean, don’t you think it is really difficult to forget the self and stick to the right path with a resolute mind? That’s because there’s our own convenience, what suits our own needs. We say, “Because those things linger, it’s so hard to stick to the right path. If this or that can be resolved or finished, I could stick to it with no problem.” But if you know the right path, you must cast aside those conveniences and wishes and stick through it with a resolute mind, regardless of what happens. God and Meishu-sama will then say to you, “Good. Given that you have stuck through, I will support you with all My power.” But instead, if we get caught up in our human wants and needs, if we do not forget ourselves, if we go on to do what is convenient for us, and if we aren’t able to take the plunge and resolutely stick through all of it, then God and Meishu-sama will never be able to help you.
Ultimately, despite facing the possibility of losing everything, it was Kyoshu-sama who stood up for the right path, wasn’t it? He stuck through everything with a resolute mind, right?
In a hymn, Meishu-sama wrote:
“A teaching that creates people / Who can’t tell right from wrong / Is a pseudo truth— / No, it is an untruth.”
As a human being, acts like secretly following people are wrong. If you don’t understand that, it’s over. If we are that ignorant, doesn’t it go to show how much we have been believing in a pseudo truth, an untruth, up until now?
In another hymn, he says:
“Know this my followers: / The key to true faith is to pay due respect to others.”
The center in this physical world, in Sekai Kyusei Kyo, that we must pay due respect to is Kyoshu-sama. Through this hymn, Meishu-sama is teaching us that to pay due respect to Kyoshu-sama is actually related to our faith also.
If you cannot pay due respect to Kyoshu-sama, it is impossible to pay due respect to God, naturally. If you favor this Kyoshu but not that one based on self-serving reasons, you will never be able to pay due respect to God, will you? God is a being that can do anything, remember? You know this just by watching the news about the world, right? At one glance, things that completely disregard human wants or needs happen one after another. Now if that is the case and we accept or kick out even Kyoshu-sama based on what suits us, there is no way you would be able to pay due respect to God, the One who can do anything. There is no way you would be able to have the respect to say to God, “Ah, I understand. You are doing this out of some sort of necessity,” regardless of what happens.
In another hymn, Meishu-sama says:
“Happiness will escape! / No matter how hard you try to rely on / And get hold of things visible, / Happiness will escape!”
It is true that material things, corporate status, the sacred grounds, facilities and churches are important. But if in order to have those things, you commit acts like secretly following people, or approve of those kinds of people and go with their leadership, it’s over, isn’t it? To commit such acts because you want material things means you are done for as a believer in God. Don’t they know that?
“Oh, you who live in falsehood! / How sad is the way you perish. / You bring it upon yourself / For you turn your back against the path of light.”
What is this “path of light”? It is the path of Meishu-sama, and the path of Meishu-sama is the path of Messiah. Now, the one who showed us this path of Messiah is Kyoshu-sama, right? That means the “path of light” is “the path of Messiah under Kyoshu-sama.” And remember, when we say Messiah, it means both Jesus and Meishu-sama. Because when Meishu-sama founded World Church of Messiah, he received and accepted the existence of Jesus Christ at the same time. So “the path of Jesus and Meishu-sama under Kyoshu-sama”—this is the “path of light.” If you turn your back against this, you will perish, as Meishu-sama says.
So if those of Sekai Kyusei Kyo end up winning the trial and their path leading to Kyoshu-sama disappears, all that is left for them is Meishu-sama’s judgment. Well, I think Meishu-sama has long given up on them, so what waits for them is God’s judgment and His only.
It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of God. (Note from Masaaki-sama: Please refer to Hebrews 10:26–31. See final page.) Of course, it is out of His love that He judges us, but it is still terrifying.
All of you, however, chose the path of light. Just like the members during Nidai-sama’s and Sandai-sama’s time who appeared in the video “Save Sekai Kyusei Kyo,” you are all offering your pure, precious, noble and unwavering faith to God.
Today is Meishu-sama’s Birthday Service. What kind of birthday present would Meishu-sama be most pleased with? To begin with, the most important treasure for Meishu-sama is all of you, his followers. Then, don’t you think he would be most pleased with the resolute heart of each one of you?
Under Kyoshu-sama’s leadership, all of you gather, respond piece by piece to Meishu-sama’s long-standing wishes of “Johrei is not so important anymore” and “working in concert with Christians,” and stick to that path with a resolute mind.
And even if something adverse should happen, it is when you resolutely stick to the path of light, to the right path, that God and Meishu-sama will give you all the strength you need.
So today on Meishu-sama’s Birthday Service, I am sure that Meishu-sama is very happy and saying that there is no greater gift than your faith. We also heard today’s piano performance before the service, “O Holy Night,” which celebrates the day that Jesus was born. The day Jesus was born is a joyous day, for sure. But the day that Meishu-sama was born is also a joyous day. The two together are one. Jesus and Meishu-sama are two but work as one—this is the path of Meishu-sama. It is the path of Meishu-sama, the path of World Church of Messiah, the path of light. And actually, ahead of us on this path of light is a joy and happiness beyond our imagination that we can practically see. We are walking on that path right now.
From here on too, all kinds of things will happen, but we must never forget the heart that is pure and sticks through everything with a resolute mind. God will greatly bless us who resolutely stick through with the heart of righteousness. So from here on too, together, let us walk an unswerving, non-stop straight line on the path of light.
Thank you very much.
For there is no longer any sacrifice that will take away sins if we purposely go on sinning after the truth has been made known to us. Instead, all that is left is to wait in fear for the coming Judgment and the fierce fire which will destroy those who oppose God! Anyone who disobeys the Law of Moses is put to death without any mercy when judged guilty from the evidence of two or more witnesses. What, then, of those who despise the Son of God? who treat as a cheap thing the blood of God’s covenant which purified them from sin? who insult the Spirit of grace? Just think how much worse is the punishment they will deserve! For we know who said, “I will take revenge, I will repay”; and who also said, “The Lord will judge his people.” It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God!