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UBF Ten Commandments 
8th-Dec-2006 10:43 am
The following is an excerpt from Anamgol UBF Sunday message on Ten Commandments. Anamgol UBF is considered the most exemplary UBF chapter in the world. The message is about the last half of the Ten Commandments. The fifth command is about honoring one's parents. But the Anamgol message twists the meaning of the very important commandment and says that one should respect his one-to-one shepherd as a God's messenger and as someone("대리자") who is equal to God in representing him in this world. The Anamgol message emphasizes that one will be blessed by God and grow greatly in his faith when he respects his one-to-one shepherd as such.

"...부모 공경의 계명은 조금 더 나아가보면 모든 위계질서에 대한 존중으로 연결됩니다. 우리는 웃어른들을 잘 섬기고 존경을 표해주어야합니다. 지도자들, 학교의 선생님, 직장 상사들 모두가 우리가 존경해야합니다. 만일 이들이 불의를 행하면 그것에 대해 우리는 경계하지만 그들이 있는 그 위치로 인하여 존경해 주어야합니다. 우리는 목자님들을 존경해야합니다. 자기의 일대일 목자님을 존경해하고 그 말씀 한마디 한마디를 귀담아 들어가면서 배우고 성장해야합니다. 일대일 목자님은 나를 위한 하나님의 대리자요 메신저로 알고 존경해야합니다. 우리는 우리의 목자님들을 영적 아버지 어머니로 귀하게 여기고 감사해야합니다. 목자님들이 우리 한사람을 위해 얼마나 마음 졸이며 또 마음 썩어가면서 기도하고 자기의 시간과 물질을 드려가면서, 심지어 자기 자녀를 뒤로 두고 와서 섬기는 줄 조금이라도 생가해보시기 바랍니다. 그런데 이런 것은 생각도 않고 목자님들의 희생과 섬김을 무시하고 함부로 대하면 하나님이 그 사람의 인생을 축복해주실 수 없습니다. 하나님은 살아계신 하나님 이십니다. 다 보고 듣고 계십니다. 우리가 이를 알고 행한다면 하나님은 그 사람을 축복하시고 큰 믿음의 진보가 있게 하실 것입니다..."
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9th-Dec-2006 06:22 am (UTC) - English translation
The following is english translation of the Korean excerpt.

"The command to honor parents can be extended to respect all existing hierarchical order. We must serve and respect our elders. We must respect our leaders, teachers and bosses. We must be on our guard against their sin when they commit unrighteous acts. However we must respect them because of the position that they hold (?). We must respect our shepherds. One must respect his one-to-one shepherd. He must grow by learning from his one-to-one shepherd and must pay careful attention to every word that his shepherd says to him. One must respect his one-to-one shepherd by regarding him as a God’s messenger and as someone who is equal to God in representing God before him. We must consider our shepherds our spiritual fathers and mothers. We must respect them and give thanks to them. We must think about how much our shepherds suffer for each one of us through prayer and sacrificing time and material things. They even leave their own children home alone to come to serve us. If one does not respect his shepherd properly, treating their sacrifices and love with contempt, God cannot bless him. Our God is a living God. He sees and hears everything. So if we know all these things and act accordingly, God will bless us and help him grow greatly in our faith."
9th-Dec-2006 06:41 am (UTC) - Re: English translation
I don't know why but it is very difficult to understand the Korean message of the Anamgol UBF. I was born in Korea and lived there for more than 20 years. I went to college in Korea. But the Korean language used in the Anamgol UBF messages are very difficult for me to understand. I wonder how any Korea who attend the Anamogol Sunday service understands the Korean used in Anamgol UBF!

The Anamgol messenger says, "만일 이들이 불의를 행하면 그것에 대해 우리는 경계하지만 그들이 있는 그 위치로 인하여 존경해 주어야합니다." I don't understand what this means even though it is obviously written in Korean. Especially I don't understand what the messenger means by "그 위치로 인하여". 위치 means 'position' in English. I translated it like this: "We must be on our guard against their sin when they commit unrighteous acts; however we must respect them because of the position that they hold (?)."

The Anamgol messenger seems to have "hierarchical order" in mind. So 'position' here might mean the position that a leader holds in the hierarchical order or aurhotiy(?) that the position carries in the hierarchical order.

But what is more troubling is that the Anamgol messenger seems to assume too much in saying that "그 위치로 인하여 존경해 주어야합니다." In English it means that we must respect a leader just because the leader is in the position of a leader. What does this mean? I don't understand it in Korean and I don't understand it in English.

It seems to me that the difficulty arises because the Anamgol messenger uses Korean words that are vague in meaning. As his words are vague, his thinking based on vague words also becomes vague. So the whole messge becomes vague.
9th-Dec-2006 09:30 pm (UTC) - Re: English translation
The Anamgol messenger says, "만일 이들이 불의를 행하면 그것에 대해 우리는 경계하지만 그들이 있는 그 위치로 인하여 존경해 주어야합니다." I don't understand what this means even though it is obviously written in Korean. Especially I don't understand what the messenger means by "그 위치로 인하여". 위치 means 'position' in English. I translated it like this: "We must be on our guard against their sin when they commit unrighteous acts; however we must respect them because of the position that they hold (?)."

I asked a Korean friend and he translated like that: "Even if they do wrong, we shall respect them because of their position, though we (shall) beware of it." He agreed that it is vague and unclear.

But the meaning is clear: Even if a leader such as Samuel Lee very obviously does terrible sins like forcing a woman to abort her child, we shall respect him. Yes, that's indeed the UBF teaching. Plus, one has to understand that "respect" includes that this wrong may not be criticized or even mentioned, it needs to be covered up.
9th-Dec-2006 11:59 pm (UTC) - Re: English translation
Plus, one has to understand that "respect" includes that this wrong may not be criticized or even mentioned, it needs to be covered up.

Yes. That is indeed how UBF defines what it means to respect one's one-to-one shepherd. So to respect one's one-to-one shepherd, one is put in a position to despise God's commandments. Therefore UBF theology teaches sheep to dishonor Ten Commandments to honor Dr. Samuel Lee, Dr. Peter Chang, and Dr. John Jun.
12th-Dec-2006 01:30 am (UTC) - Re: English translation
"It seems to me that the difficulty arises because the Anamgol messenger uses Korean words that are vague in meaning. As his words are vague, his thinking based on vague words also becomes vague. So the whole messge becomes vague."

Vague statements in messages and during Bible studies are common place in UBF. UBF's messages are so vague, a native Korean has difficulty translating the message into English.

If the messenger was confronted by a sheep who is upset by the idea of holding shepherds equal to God, the messenger would deny that shepherds are equal with God and that it was just a misunderstanding. The messenger will subtly tell the sheep is too spiritually young to understand the message. Further, the messenger will urge the sheep to keep studying the Bible with UBF so that he can grow spiritually and deeply receive God's word. The sheep will blame himself for the misunderstanding, remain in UBF, and assume that future misunderstandings are because of his spiritual weakness.

This is another connection UBF uses: vague messages to misunderstanding to blame the sheep to committed sheep. Many times when I confronted Isaac Kim about his words, he claimed it was just a misunderstanding. Then, he would state that we should study the Bible together and fellowship together so that I could better understand him. When we got together 1:1, he told me I was proud and needed to repent and respect him as God's servant.
12th-Dec-2006 10:38 pm (UTC) - Re: English translation
I think the vagueness and implied meaning of UBf messages is why UBF rejects the topical Bible study method. Their chapter by chapter verse by verse paraphrasing method of the books of the Bible, with their own chosen examples thrown in, is a more effective way of manipulating their hearers and keeping them in line.

Still this Anamgol message seems to direct to be delivered to American students. I don't think Teddy Hembekides would ever deliver such a direct message at Triton or Mark Vusekavich at DePaul.
11th-Dec-2006 04:49 pm (UTC) - Re: twisting biblical teaching concerning parents
Back in 2004, a UBF defender (rather, a UBF critic attacker) wrote an infamous essay that was copied at http://rsqubf.fortunecity.net/discuss/archive/6699.html . He (or she) did the same thing that this Anamgol UBF "scholar" did, but he took to the extreme of saying basically that all biblical commands regarding honoring and obeying parents applied to one's UBF leaders.
12th-Dec-2006 04:22 am (UTC) - Re: twisting biblical teaching concerning parents
According to this article Chris found, UBF Ten Commandmenst and Moonies Ten Commandments do not seem to be much different. It says the folllowing:

Moon invited the 120 founding members on an expenses-paid trip where he christened the pastors, presented each with a diamond-studded watch and said they were on a "mission to become one with the True Parents," as Moon and his wife are known in the Unification Church.

I am sure the Moonies scholars get the idea of Moon and his wife being "True Parents" from the Bible. Moon and his scholars start from the Bible and come to the conclusion that Moon and his wife are "True Parents". The UBF scholar at Anamgol start with "Honor your parents" and come to the conclusion that "Resepct your shepherds as the one who is equal to God." I wonder why UBF shepherds consider studying theology at seminary humanistic. But strangely enough, all UBF shepherds think that they are so spiritual(?). I think all moonies also consider themselves very spiritual since they believes Moon and his wife as his "True Parents".
12th-Dec-2006 02:12 pm (UTC) - Re: twisting biblical teaching concerning parents
When the aforementioned UBF defender wrote his essay, claiming that (almost) all biblical teaching concerning obedience and honor to parents applied to one's UBF leaders, I think it was kind of laughed off and thought to be the work of an overzealous mind. But now, an Anamgol UBF "scholar" has twisted the Bible in the same way in a UBF message. (After all, if the Fifth Commandment applies to one's UBF "shepherds" as one's "spiritual parents," then by extension, why not all the Bible's teachings about honoring and obeying one's parents?) This can't be laughed off anymore. I think this shows that this type of Bible twisting runs up and down the mainstream of UBF to enforce the "spiritual order" and "absolute obedience" false teachings.

The Anamgol UBF scholar takes it even further than that UBF defender from 2004 did. To teach that one's UBF one-to-one "shepherd" should be seen as "equal to God in representing God before him" is incredibly unbiblical and even cultic. The UBF take on 1 Timothy 2:5 has always been a bit tenuous and superficial because of their stubborn emphasis on hierarchy. But this Anamgol UBF scholar just took 1 Ti 2:5 and threw it in the garbage.
9th-Dec-2006 07:23 am (UTC)
The Anamgol messenger claims that 부모 공경의 계명은 조금 더 나아가보면 모든 위계질서에 대한 존중으로 연결됩니다 (The command to honor parents can be extended to respect all existing hierarchical order.)"

I consider this kind of extending the meaning of the Bible the most serious problem in UBF theology. UBF theology never seems to give clear justification for its theological reasoning. For example, the fifth commandment says, "Honor your father and mother." But no where in the Ten Commandments one can find "Respect all existing hierarchical order." So one should naturally raise a question: Given Ten Commandments, how can I go from "Honor your father and mother" to "Respect all existing hierarchical order"? Obviously one wants to do it based on sound theological reasoning. Otherwise it would end up being a boolsheet. I claim that the Anamgol messenger is boolsheetting with authority here.

The whole UBF theology is nothing but boolsheetting with authority. Why? Because you cannot raise any question against any theological arguement given by your one-to-one shepherd or by Dr. Samuel Lee or Dr. John Jun. As Dr. Schafer testifies in this message, "In our typical UBF message style, we try to be very convincing and make absolute statements. With a loud voice, we say, 'Jesus is the way!'" All you hear from a typical UBF messenger is just a loud voice that sounds very convincing. But no UBF one-to-one shepherds are trained with basic theological reasoning of going from A to B or from A to C.

A: "Honor your father and mother."
B: "Respect all existing hierarchical order."
C: "Respect your one-to-one shepherd as someone who is equal to God."

The Anamgol messenger claims that he can go to B from A because A is in Ten Commandments. So he finally concludes that one must do C since A is in Ten Commandments. But he never seems to think more deeply why he can do that. If his sheep asks him "Why so?", he can call his sheep a humanistic rebel or Satan. If he really wants to keep his sheep in his chapter, he would tell him, "Just obey even though you don't understand. Then God will bless your obedience." This is basically how the UBF system works. This is basically the reason why UBF hurts sheep and why UBF was divided into two.
9th-Dec-2006 11:14 am (UTC)
You're really onto something here. We can observe two phenomena in UBF messages:

1) They claim to be based on the Bible, but what they do is take a Bible passage, then select some "key verses", then they formulate it in their own words, twisting it already somewhat or adding something, and then make a chain of steps from there to the UBF cult ideology. Each step seems to be logical to a UBF follower, since they are not accustomed to think on their own and question the logical steps in the message. It's like in these puzzles where you start with one word and by changing only one letter in each step, you arrive at something completely different (e.g. winter winner wanner wander warder warded warmed harmed hammed hummed summed summer). This way you can come from one meaning to the opposite meaning by making only small twists that are hardly noticed.

2) Your observation that it is difficult to translate the statement is correct. The problem for the UBFers is that they cannot formulate their cult ideology too clearly because then it would be too obvious for the new sheep or members who still have a rest of conscience to see that there is something wrong and cultish. Therefore they have to formulate it in an ambiguous way that can be understood in a more harmless way but those in the cult understand the real meaning. Actually, UBF and all cults prefer to have "unspoken rules" and "unspoken theology" because as soon as you speak it out, it would immediately appear ridiculous or cult-like. So they convey their message between the lines and through practice (imitation, punishment etc.) only. It is very seldom that they really speak out their ideology in the messages, and if they do they make it vague and ambigous so you can never nail them down to it. They always want to have the resort that they they never said or wrote that or have been misunderstood.

This passage is also important because it contains the fundamental teaching of UBF:

* "Treat and obey your UBF shepherds as if they were God."
* "Obey them even if you do not understand them or think they are sinning."

I have seen Kaleb Hong preaching these very teachings from another passage that was even farer away. By applying the twisting in little steps method, they can arrive at this teaching from every possible Bible passage.
12th-Dec-2006 04:48 am (UTC) - sacrifice theology
Another recurring theme in UBF message is "sacrifice". The Anamgol messenger says,

목자님들이 우리 한사람을 위해 얼마나 마음 졸이며 또 마음 썩어가면서 기도하고 자기의 시간과 물질을 드려가면서, 심지어 자기 자녀를 뒤로 두고 와서 섬기는 줄 조금이라도 생가해보시기 바랍니다. 그런데 이런 것은 생각도 않고 목자님들의 희생과 섬김을 무시하고 함부로 대하면 하나님이 그 사람의 인생을 축복해주실 수 없습니다. (We must think about how much our shepherds suffer for each one of us through prayer and sacrificing time and material things. They even leave their own children home alone to come to serve us. If one does not respect his shepherd properly, treating their sacrifices and love with contempt, God cannot bless him.)

There is no doubt that it is a great virtue to sacrifice oneself for the benefit of others. Sacrifice should be valued greatly in any society. But what should I do when two Jehovah's witnesses come and knock at my door every Satudray? I really admire their persistence and sacrifice(?) to save my soul according to their own theology(?). I really do.

Because I was moved so much by their sacrifice(?), one day I gave them some to have talk with them. They seemed to know a lot about the Bible. They showed me so many bible verses. They quoted the bible verses from here and there. Then they connected the passages logically according to their own theology and finally came to the conclusion that there was no heaven!

I was so much moved by their hard working and sacrifice to convert me to a Jehovah's witness. But I told them that I do not belive their theology and told them never come again. I felt so bad because I felt like I was being so rude to them. Based on the sacrifice argument by the Anamgol messenger, I think I did something very terrible. But I could not but help feeling strongly that the two Jehovah's witnesses were WRONG regardless of how much they had to sacrifice to help(?) me see the truth(?) of God.
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